News

Daysha Eaton, KBBI News

Voters in the Kenai Peninsula Borough will decide in October whether the small Russian Old Believer village of Kachemak Selo, also known as K-Selo, will get a new school. The roadless village near the head of Kachemak Bay serves roughly 45 students in three deteriorating houses that were converted into classrooms over 30 years ago.

The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly approved putting the roughly $5.4 million bond proposition on the ballot Tuesday. The state would pay for a majority of the school, which is estimated to cost about $15.5 million total.

Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

This week on the Coffee Table, KBBI News Director Aaron Bolton speaks with Homer Police Chief Mark Robl and City Council members Donna Aderhold and Heath Smith about the city's $5 million bond proposition for a new police station. Homer city residents will vote on the proposition during a special election on June 26. 

Image courtesy of U.S. Coast Guard

The U.S. Coast Guard rescued four mariners Sunday after the commercial fishing vessel Soulmate was disabled and began drifting 57 miles west of Kodiak Island. The vessel is registered Joseph Samoilov of Homer.

The Coast Guard was contacted Saturday and stayed in contact with the crew every six hours before the Coast Guard Cutter Naushon was dispatched to the scene Sunday. The Soulmate was towed to Alitak Bay.

Weather on scene was reported as 15-mph winds and 11.5-mile visibility.

Alaska Department of Fish and Game

As a number of commercial salmon fisheries around the state kick off this week, the outlook for ex-vessel prices is looking good. Fishing economists say between lower run forecasts and strong foreign and domestic demand, commercial fishermen will likely see higher prices this year. But that doesn’t necessarily mean commercial fishermen will earn more this season compared to last year.   

Andy Wink with Wink Research and Consulting said although prices vary by species and region, most fisheries should see stable or higher prices this year.

Image courtesy of U.S. Coast Guard

The U.S. Coast Guard medevaced a 13-year-old boy Saturday near Chenega Island in the southwest corner of Prince William Sound.

The F/V Golden Pacific notified watchstanders that the boy was experiencing symptoms of a seizure after falling 18 feet. An EMT onboard the vessel assessed the teen before additional care was requested.

A Coast Guard flight surgeon agreed, and the vessel was diverted to Chenega Island. A Cordova-based Jayhawk helicopter crew then transported the teen to Anchorage.

Courtesy of Alaska Department of Fish and Game

Slow king salmon runs are prompting the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to close three popular rivers to sport fishing on the southern Kenai Peninsula.

Sport fishing in Deep Creek and on the Anchor and Ninilchik rivers will be closed starting midnight on June 2. The closures will run through July 15. The department also closed sport fishing for kings in salt water within 1 mile of shore from Bluff Point to the Ninilchik River.

Courtesy of Alaska Legislature

House Rep. Paul Seaton of Homer is taking a new route this election cycle. Seaton has represented House District 31 on the Kenai Peninsula as a Republican since 2002, but he filed Thursday to run as a non-partisan candidate in the Democratic primary.

Courtesy of Tim Whip

The principal of the Kachemak Selo and Razdolna schools will be retiring in June. Tim Whip has taught every grade level, except kindergarten. He became principal of Razdolna roughly six years ago and Kachemak Selo about four years ago. 

Whip said the schools have embodied personalized learning and have incorporated more technology during his tenure.

Kachemak Bay Writers' Conference

Writers and readers will be descending on Homer for the Kachemak Bay Writers’ Conference next week. The 17th annual literary arts event features workshops, panels, open mic sessions and more. But conference founder Carol Swartz said it’s the relationships that make the event.

“You can read a book on developing plot, character development if you will and different aspects of poetry, poetry writing, but the sense of community and the shared experience, people feel brings another level and another layer, another introspection to their writing,” she said.

Creative Commons Zero - CC0

In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month, this week's Coffee Table is on the stigma surrounding mental illness and substance abuse. Jay Bechtol, the head of South Peninsula Behavioral Health Services, and Hannah Heimbuch, a member of the local recovery group The Bearded Sister, discuss how the community can overcome negative attitudes toward these diseases. 

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