Kaktovik voters overturn decades-old alcohol ban

Kaktovik, Alaska (Department of Commerce photo)

After decades of banning alcohol, residents of the North Slope village of Kaktovik have voted to discontinue their designation as a “dry” village. City officials certified results from a special election on June 8 to remove the local option which prohibits the import, sale, and possession of alcohol.

The other seven communities in the North Slope Borough, including the regional hub Utqiagvik, currently ban alcohol. 

The special election results in Kaktovik were 54-32 in favor of lifting the ban. Voter turnout was close in number to the election in 1989 when the village initially banned alcohol.

Kaktovik is the easternmost village in the North Slope Borough, about 310 miles east of Utqiagvik, with a population of 262 residents.