Articles from the December 31, 2020 edition


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  • 2020: Year in Review

    Brian Varela|Dec 31, 2020

    January The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration proposed establishing critical habitat areas for humpback whales in three distinct population segments located off Mexico, Central American and the Western Pacific. The Petersburg Borough sent a letter of disapproval to the National Marine Fisheries Service regarding the proposed critical habitat for humpback whales after residents spoke out against the proposal. The Petersburg Borough authorized the hire of Josh Rathmann to fill the...

  • Red Kettles bring in $19,879.50

    Brian Varela|Dec 31, 2020

    Bell ringers raised $19,879.50 in donations for the Salvation Army Red Kettle campaign this holiday season, said Salvation Army Major Loni Upshaw. The donations will fund the Salvation Army's social services budget through 2021. Donations exceeded last year's donation by $2,700, and nearly reached the same amount as Ketchikan's Salvation Army's donations, which surprised Upshaw. She said she didn't have as many organizations and volunteers out ringing the bell this year as previous years. "We...

  • Yesterday's News

    Dec 31, 2020

    December 31, 1920 Looking back over the past year, it seems to us that Petersburg has taken a rapid stride to the front since we last extended to you the season’s greetings. More new houses and homes have been built than for several years before: the Petersburg sawmill was taken over by new owners and had a successful season: the road between Petersburg and Scow Bay was nearly completed: the new reduction plant at Scow Bay was built and operated the latter part of the season: the cold storage plant at Scow Bay was nearly completed: the capacity...

  • Pilot picks up where others left off

    Brian Varela|Dec 31, 2020

    Scott Newman had always wanted to fly float planes out of Petersburg. He had flown planes for both Pacific Wing and Pacific Wings on and off since the early 1990s. When COVID-19 shut down the latter air taxi service earlier this year, the DeHavilland Beaver went up for sale. "I really liked flying the Beaver," said Newman, who was born and raised in Petersburg. "It was kind of like my airplane of choice. When I flew for them, I tried to fly it as much as possible." He purchased the Beaver and...

  • Petersburg Legislative Information Office

    Dec 31, 2020

    The Petersburg Legislative Information Office is currently closed to walk-in services. Call or leave a message with your name and number, or email for help. Limited live appointments are available. Call to make a plan with us before making a trip downtown. 2020 Non Reproducible IRS Employer Report Forms: The LIO has the 2020 tax year forms in stock. 1099 MISC, INT, DIV,1098, 1096 Transmittal, and W-2 and W-3s are all available. Call with your order, and it will be ready here for pick up. FY22 Budget Release and Executive Order: If you...

  • Year ends with three active cases

    Brian Varela|Dec 31, 2020

    A Petersburg resident who returned from out of state on Dec. 30 has tested positive for COVID-19, according to a joint press release from the Petersburg Borough and Petersburg Medical Center. The individual was tested for COVID-19 three days before traveling back to town, and received the positive test result soon after landing in Petersburg. According to the joint press release, the individual is asymptomatic and in isolation. Another resident who returned to Petersburg from out of state on Dec...

  • To the Editor

    Dec 31, 2020

    Thank you Petersburg To the Editor: Thank you, Petersburg, for helping us all get through the 2020 salmon season safely and nearly COVID-19-free! Now it is winter, our selling season, and with every piece of fish we sell or eat, we are grateful for the changes you made to ensure the summer was a success. Although countless people helped make our gillnet season successful, there were many we didn't see so wish to acknowledge: OBI and Trident Seafoods with thoughtful, unwavering protocols; Karl...

  • Editorial: Money is circulating

    Ron Loesch Publisher|Dec 31, 2020

    Overall, Petersburg doesn't look like a town in distress. We've seen what happens in "down" years, and there is no resemblance. Charitable giving is generally up and local businesses appear to be doing well with only a few exceptions. As we mentioned last week, the city's distribution of $3.9 million in CARES funding was a part of it. (See breakout above) The biggest factor however appears to be from 539 local businesses and boats applying for and receiving over $15.08 million in SBA's Economic...

  • Editorial: Health consequences

    Ron Loesch Publisher|Dec 31, 2020

    It's clear that the actions of Petersburg's Emergency Operations Center, the Petersburg Medical Center staff and the State Public Health Nurse have played a huge part in keeping the Covid-19 virus at bay on Mitkof Island. The actions of these officials have been questioned, marginalized, and outright rejected in some cases. Public health leaders are constantly attempting to balance the impact of their decisions against the health consequences of inaction. It has nothing to do with restricting...

  • Designs for Motor Pool Shop finished

    Brian Varela|Dec 31, 2020

    WJE Associates, Inc. has finished the designs for the rehabilitation of the Motor Pool Shop, and Public Works Director Chris Cotta said he will begin the bidding process in the first week of January. "The basics are it's a renovation," said Cotta. "There's going to be a lot of cleaning and selective demolition and replacement of anything that was damaged in the fire." The Motor Pool Shop was damaged in August of 2019 when a fire originating from an adjacent storage shed spread to the building....

  • Police report

    Dec 31, 2020

    December 23— Suspicious activity was observed at a location on Fram St. An officer served a summons to Christopher Miller. A lost wallet was reported to authorities. Residents at a location on Haugen Dr. reported a wildlife complaint to authorities. December 24— Authorities responded to a report of suspicious activity at a location on S. 3rd St. The owner of a business at a location on S. Nordic. Dr. filed a report of theft with authorities. December 25— Suspicious activity was reported at a location on Fram St. A concerned citizen spoke to au...

  • Court report

    Dec 31, 2020

    Dec. 3 – The court entered a not guilty plea on behalf of defendant Mathew Brown, Jr. who was arraigned on charges of violating conditions of release. The defendant was released O.R. with conditions. Dec. 4 – Levi Scott Newman appeared in a felony first hearing on charges of burglary in the 1st, criminal trespass in the 1st and theft in the 4th. The defendant entered not guilty pleas on the last two charges. The defendant was released on a $500 performance bail and other conditions. Dec. 9 – Nicole Marie Wooton was arraigned on charges of DU...

  • Julebukking 2020

    Brian Varela|Dec 31, 2020

  • Alaska Fish Factor: State's commercial fisheries set to get breather from fund swapping rather than lawmakers' largess

    Laine Welch|Dec 31, 2020

    As Alaska faces its toughest budget squeeze ever, the state’s commercial fisheries are set to get a bit of a breather. But it is due more to fund swapping than lawmakers’ largess. For the commercial fisheries division, the largest within the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, the preliminary FY2022 budget released by Governor Dunleavy reflects a slight increase to $72.8 million, compared to nearly $68 million last year. “I think we did really well this year,” said Sam Rabung, commercial fisheries division director, speaking last week at a Unit...

  • Fish & Game forecasts average pink salmon harvest

    Brian Varela|Dec 31, 2020

    The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is predicting an average pink salmon harvest of 28 million fish in 2021, according to an advisory announcement. While the point estimate for the harvest is 28 million fish, the range of the forecast is between 19 to 42 million fish. Andy Piston, Fish and Game Southeast Alaska pink and chum salmon project leader, said that such a wide forecast range is a reflection of the uncertainty in the forecast. "Twenty-eight million sounds pretty good compared to...

  • School News

    Dec 31, 2020

    Brynn Lister was named to the President’s List at Montana State University at Bozeman....

  • Artifact Archive

    Dec 31, 2020

    Promotional Calendars Objects noting the passage of time have been around for millenia, but promotional calendars are relatively new. Not until the 1850s did Ohio newspaperman Jasper Meek begin creating promotional items in quantity, expanding to hats, trays and other collectible items. Clausen Memorial Museum has a number of promotional calendars, some of the earliest being Sing Lee's General Store and Bank of Petersburg from 1927. These, and calendars from OK's Beer Parlor, Sanitary Market,...

  • Progress made on Wrangell Mariners' Memorial walls

    Caleb Vierkant|Dec 31, 2020

    WRANGELL — Groundwork for the Wrangell Mariners’ Memorial has come to a halt for winter, but progress has still been made recently. Jenn Miller-Yancey, with the Mariners’ Memorial board, reported that work is being done for the memorial’s walls, where plaques will one day be hung to commemorate Wrangell sailors who have passed away. “There will be four walls within the memorial, three walls meant to hold plaques that are 26 feet long, curved and vary in height from 42 inches to 8 feet,” Miller-Yancey wrote in an email. “There will be 1 wall at...

  • Congress approves bill to train prospective fishermen

    Dec 31, 2020

    SITKA, Alaska (AP) — A bill to establish the nation’s first ever federal program to train prospective commercial fishermen has passed Congress and awaits approval by the White House. The Young Fishermen’s Development Act was passed unanimously by both the U.S. House and Senate, the Sitka Sentinel reported Monday. The law would provide grants to foster the growth of budding fishermen across the country. The bill introduced by Republican U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan in 2019 had bipartisan support, with co-sponsors that included Democratic U.S. Sen....

  • Bald eagle shot in AK survives; investigation underway

    Dec 31, 2020

    JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A bald eagle that had been shot has survived with a broken leg and is being treated at a bird hospital in Alaska. The eagle was rescued on Tuesday after Kathy Benner, the manager of the Juneau Raptor Center, received a report about an injured bird in a person’s yard in Juneau. It is illegal to harm bald eagles under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act of 1940 unless a permit from the Secretary of the Interior is provided. Violating the law can result in up to $100,000 in fines for individuals and $200,000 in fin...

  • Unfrozen

    Dec 31, 2020

    A portion of the Crystal Mountain Ridge stands above Crystal Lake, which is usually frozen this time of the year....

  • EOC switches town to moderate risk amid virus spike

    Brian Varela|Dec 31, 2020

    The Petersburg Emergency Operations Center raised the local risk level for COVID-19 from yellow to orange on Monday after Petersburg saw six active cases of the virus within seven days, according to a joint media release between the Petersburg Borough and Petersburg Medical Center. "Following the holidays, and some holiday travel, Petersburg is definitely seeing an uptick in COVID-19 cases," said Incident Commander Karl Hagerman to the Borough Assembly at their meeting on Monday. Details of the... Full story

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