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Joe Viechnicki, KFSK - Petersburg

Joe Viechnicki is a reporter at KFSK in Petersburg.

UPDATE: Former Petersburg School Maintenance Director Charged For Child Porn

The former maintenance director of the Petersburg School District appeared in a Juneau courtroom Wednesday after being charged with distribution and possession of child pornography.

October 30, 2013

Secure Rural Schools Program Extension Approved

Congress has passed a one-year extension of a program that pays out millions of dollars to communities in Alaska near national forest land, like Petersburg. The extension of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act of 2000 was approved by the house and senate this week.

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September 27, 2013

School Board Questions Laws On New Student Physicals

Should parents pay for a state required physical exam for new students entering a public school in Alaska? That was the question raised by a member of Petersburg’s School Board this summer.

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September 23, 2013
Dead Humpback Whale Examined Near Kake

Dead Humpback Whale Examined Near Kake

An adult female humpback whale was found dead near the Southeast community of Kake earlier this month. Kate Savage, a marine mammal specialist with the NOAA Fisheries protected resources division in Juneau, says the dead whale was first reported around Sept. 1 in Keku Strait near Kake. It was later floated to an island outside of Kake and Savage led a team performing a necropsy on the animal on Sept. 11.

September 20, 2013

Petersburg Republican to Seek House Seat

A Petersburg Republican plans to run for House District 35 in hopes of unseating a freshman Democratic representative from Sitka. Legislative districts for next year have not cleared a legal challenge but at least two people intend to run for the new district that includes Sitka, Petersburg, Craig and other communities on the northern half of Prince of Wales Island.

September 2, 2013
Whale Tangled in Gillnet Heads North

Whale Tangled in Gillnet Heads North

Volunteers from Petersburg were not able to free a humpback whale tangled up in a gillnet near Petersburg on Friday and Saturday.

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August 27, 2013

Petersburg Concerned With Future of USCG In Community

Petersburg officials are seeking answers about the future of Coast Guard ships in the community. Borough Mayor Mark Jensen sent a letter to Senator Mark Begich this month voicing concern that the cutter Anacapa could be replaced by larger vessels planned for other Southeast ports.

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August 13, 2013

Record-Setting Pink Run Hits Southeast

A huge and record-setting run of pink salmon is hitting Southeast Alaska this summer. The region’s purse seine fleet has been netting around 8 million pinks per opening in late July and early August. The overall catch for all of last season was around 21 million.

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August 8, 2013
Warm Weather Kills Hatchery Chinook Near Petersburg

Warm Weather Kills Hatchery Chinook Near Petersburg

Over a thousand hatchery king salmon died at Blind River rapids sometime last week. The Chinook were returning to the Crystal Lake Hatchery on southern Mitkof Island, south of Petersburg. Warm water temperatures appear to be the culprit.

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July 24, 2013

Petersburg Man Killed In Trailer Fire

A trailer fire early Saturday morning claimed the life of an elderly Petersburg man. Frank Neidiffer was found dead once volunteer fire fighters were able to get in.

July 23, 2013
Photo courtesy of the Alaska State Troopers

Preliminary report out for fatal float plane crash

The National Transportation Safety Board has released its preliminary report on last week’s fatal crash of a floatplane near Petersburg. The report summarizes the circumstances in the June 4th accident but does not yet include a probable cause for that fatal crash.

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June 14, 2013
Photo courtesy of the Alaska State Troopers

Float Plane Crash Victim Recovered From Steep Mountainside

Alaska State Troopers and other rescuers Wednesday recovered the body of a Santa Fe man killed in Tuesday’s float plane crash near Petersburg.

June 6, 2013

Body Recovered From Fatal Plane Crash

The National Transportation Safety Board needed help from mountain rescue specialists to get to the site of Tuesday’s fatal plane crash near Thunder Mountain east of Petersburg.

June 6, 2013
One Dead, Six Survive Float Plane Crash Near Petersburg

One Dead, Six Survive Float Plane Crash Near Petersburg

One person is dead and six were rescued from a floatplane crash Tuesday on the mainland near Petersburg.

June 5, 2013

Federal Judge Dismisses Alaska’s Challenge of Roadless Rule

A federal judge has dismissed Alaska’s court challenge of the roadless rule for national forest land. Alaska had the last remaining legal case against the 2001 nationwide rule, which prohibits new road construction, reconstruction or logging on large undeveloped areas of national forest land across the U.S. That includes parts of the Tongass and Chugach national forests in Alaska.

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March 25, 2013

Troopers Investigating Kake Teenager’s Death As A Homicide

Alaska State Troopers are investigating the death of a 13-year-old girl in the small Southeast community of Kake as a homicide.

February 7, 2013

13-Year-Old Girl Found Dead Inside Kake Church

Family members have identified the person found dead in the Southeast community of Kake Tuesday night as a 13-year-old girl, Mackenzie H. Howard of Kake. Alaska State Troopers say Howard was found by a member of the community inside the Memorial Presbyterian Church.

February 7, 2013
Petersburg Officials Review Tsunami Evacuation

Petersburg Officials Review Tsunami Evacuation

Petersburg officials are reviewing the community’s response to a tsunami warning from the January 4th earthquake that rattled Southeast Alaska and sent residents scrambling to higher ground in the middle of the night. The voluntary evacuation went smoothly by many accounts but also highlighted some possible areas of improvement.

January 28, 2013

Petersburg Becomes 19th Borough In Alaska

It’s official. Petersburg is now a borough. The state’s Division of Elections certified the town’s borough vote Thursday January 3rd and the final results did not changed from the initial counts in December. The final tally is 782 votes in favor and 600 opposed.

January 3, 2013
State Looks At Southeast Alaska Wolf Control Programs

State Looks At Southeast Alaska Wolf Control Programs

Southeast game managers are working on new wolf control programs for Southeast Alaska. The state’s Board of Game will hear about the plan when it meets in January in Sitka. The Department of Fish and Game is looking at reducing wolves near Petersburg and Ketchikan to help boost deer numbers. Predator control efforts are underway in other parts of the state but these new programs would be the first of their kind in decades for Southeast.

December 18, 2012