Local News

7 file for 2 council positions

A last-day filing by three candidates on Monday boosted the Homer City Council election from four candidates last Friday to seven as of 5 p.m. Aug. 17. 

In Kenai Peninsula Borough elections, Anchor Point resident Dawson Slaughter made the election for the District 9 borough assembly seat a contest when he filed against Fritz Creek resident Willy Dunne. District 9 assembly member Mako Haggerty cannot run for re-election because of term limits. District 9 is the seat for the southern Kenai Peninsula, excluding Homer.

Less restrictive beach policy proposal to be introduced at Sept. 14 meeting

Citizens riled up about a proposed city of Homer ordinance that would ban year-round driving on Bishop’s Beach and summer driving on the Homer Spit can save their energy in opposing it. 

Council member Catriona Reynolds, who sponsored Ordinance 15-29 with council member David Lewis, said this week that she will recommend a no vote on the ordinance. Reynolds said this week she didn’t think she had enough votes to pass the ordinance.

Hickory comes home

Holding signs that said things like "It's time to give your Mrs. her kisses," "Keep Calm: You're Home," "I'd wait for your forever, but four months is long enough" and simply "Finally," a group of U.S. Coast Guard wives and children and one brother waited on the Pioneer Dock Thursday for the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hickory to return.

Homer’s Schroer inducted into Hall of Fame

When the state inducted a new class of luminaries into the Alaska High School Hall of Fame, the Kenai Peninsula had the chance to celebrate two of its own as they were recognized for their imprint upon the history of high school athletics.

Dave Schroer and Roger Steinbrecher are two of nine new inductees honored Aug. 2 at the Hilton Hotel in Anchorage. With a combined 48 years of dedicated service to the Kenai Peninsula Borough — and years more of immeasurable success — both men have played critical roles in establishing and growing their community. 

Dunne files for assembly

Homer resident William R. “Willy” Dunne has filed to run for the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly seat in District 9, South Peninsula. So far, Dunne is the only candidate to file for that seat. Because of term limits, District 9 assembly member Mako Haggerty cannot run for re-election.

Candidate filing periods opened earlier this month for Homer City Council seats and Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly, Board of Education and service area boards. The Homer filing period ends 5 p.m. Monday and the borough filing period ends at noon Monday.

Fairbanks assembly debates tax on pot sales

FAIRBANKS — Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly members are set to vote on a tax proposal on marijuana sales next week, but members can’t agree on how much to charge.

The assembly is having a special meeting on Aug. 20 to vote on a tax proposal about what tax rate to put before the voters on the Oct. 6 ballot, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported.

One measure calls for an 8 percent tax, the same rate applied to wholesale tobacco. Another, for a 5 percent tax, the same rate applied to alcohol.

Cordova man arrested in HEA burglary

Surveillance video and a chance encounter with a man sleeping in a stairwell at the Kachemak Center led to the arrest of that man, Patrick B. Jensen, 29, of Cordova, on charges of second-degree burglary and second-degree theft, both felonies. 

Homer Police allege Jensen broke into Homer Electric Association offices on Lake Street early on Aug. 5 and stole laptop computers, cell phones, food and other items valued at $1,800.

Unsolved murder remains police priority

Why hasn’t the killer of Mark Matthews been brought to justice? Two years after someone killed a Homer man near a popular downtown trail, that’s a question Matthews’ brother asked.

“Those cops, they’ve got that place wired. They have to know who did this,” Mike Kohel, one of three siblings of Matthews, said in a phone interview earlier this month from his home in Everett, Wash.

Man arrested for terroristic threatening at Safeway

A man upset that he’d been sold a defective phone card allegedly knocked over displays and threatened to shoot Safeway employees in an incident the morning of Aug. 6. Homer police arrested Steavin R. Martin, 30, on second-degree terroristic threatening, a felony, and fifth-degree criminal mischief.

In a criminal complaint, Homer Police Officer Jim Knott said that about 8:30 a.m. Aug. 6, three people reported a man at Safeway yelling and knocking items off a wall. One 911 caller said the man threatened to shoot them with an assault rifle. 

Ice Plant hums with old-school technology

In this climate-changed world, there are reasons to get sentimental about ice. It is old, for one. Our local sheet — the Harding Icefield — was formed more than 23,000 years ago. And it is disappearing.

But it’s not ice George Tyrer feels nostalgic about. It is the 32-year-old ice-making machines Tyrer has been running in the City of Homer’s Ice Plant on the Fish Dock at the end of the Spit for the last decade.

Reality TV stars plead not guilty to hunting violations

A Discovery Channel reality TV star facing a charge of using a helicopter in a bear hunt suffered injuries from a fall about 6 a.m. Monday morning at Otter Cove in Kachemak Bay. 

Atz Lee Kilcher, 38, had to be medevaced by LifeMed helicopter from the scene to a hospital, Alaska State Troopers said in a press release on Tuesday. Kilcher’s injuries made transportation by boat too painful, the release said.

Youth learn to give back to community

What do you get when you mix 15 teenage girls, a church camping trip and a hot, muggy day? 

Girl power is what you get, and a lot of it.

It was supposed to rain all day on June 4 in Seldovia, when 15 girls began the long trek from their campsite to the road where they would be caravanned to the Seldovia Police Department. They estimated they had to climb approximately 200 steps to reach the top of the hill that bordered their campsite. 

Growing with Alaska in Mind

Shawn and Ember Jackinsky’s garden looks almost like every other northern garden. There are currants, chickens, gooseberries, carrots and kale, all protected from the vanguards of the moose by a tall fence. 

But a short interview with the brother and sister duo will tell you that this garden is unique. The two have spent the last 15 years developing strains of edibles designed specifically for Alaska’s climate, and the results are a unique take on sustainability. 

Hikers rescued near China Poot Lake

An Alaska Air Guard Guardian Angel team early on July 28 rescued two hikers lost near China Poot Lake on the south shore of Kachemak Bay. An Air Guard Pavehawk helicopter took Patrick King, 57, of Kenai, and Victoria Baldasarre, 55, of Amherst, N.H., to the Homer Airport. Both were uninjured. The hikers wandered off the China Poot Lake Trail in Kachemak Bay State Park and tried for several hours to find the trail.

Beyond halibut:

Fish cutters at Coal Point Seafoods notice there’s less halibut coming into the 23-year-old fish processing business on Thursdays. Clad in head nets, aprons and rubber boots, they might grumble about filleting boney pollock instead.

On Thursdays, they see more pollock, as well as salmon, lingcod, and rockfish instead of halibut, which streams into the building as soon as charter boats return to the harbor every other day of the week. Owner Nancy Hillstrand confirms that Thursdays are slow. 

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