KTNA Studio – Dave Totten, artist

Photo by Deb Wessler

Photo by Dora Miller

KTNA Studio

KTNA On Air Studio, Jan 2013

Photo by Deb Wessler

Photo by James Trump

Fish Lake morning

Fish Lake morning

photo: Robin Song

Archives

Posts from the 'Local News' category

Borough Consultants Meet With Talkeetna Residents on Sewer and Water Rates

Thursday, August 7, 2014

On Wednesday, CRW Engineering Group met with community members in Talkeetna to discuss the recent sewer and water system assessment.  The two-hour meeting was dominated by discussion of potential rate structures.  KTNA’s Phillip Manning was at the meeting, and has this report:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

While there are some operational tweaks that could slightly ease the deficit spending of the Talkeetna Sewer and Water System, what the state-funded study finds is that a significant increase in revenue, meaning water bills, is necessary.  On Wednesday, Andrea Meeks of CRW Engineering Group laid out three potential new rate structures, all of which incorporate significant annual increases.  For example, the average residential user would end up paying around $145 per month in the summer of 2019, as opposed to the current rate of around $87. G. Denny, a member of the Talkeetna Community Council board of directors,  said that, while the rate hikes might work on paper, they are not feasible in reality. (more…)

Federal Government Gives Mat-Su Borough 30 Days to Repay $12 Million in Ferry Funds

Thursday, August 7, 2014

MV Susitna. Photo from Mat-Su Borough Press Release.

20140807Ferry

READ THROUGH FRIDAY AM

The federal government has contacted the Mat-Su Borough asking for repayment of $12.3 million dollars in grant funds connected to the idle MV Susitna.  In a letter dated August 5th, the Federal Transit Authority says that the borough has thirty days to repay the amount or else risk delinquency.  The borough has made attempts to sell the 190 foot vessel as well as to transfer it to another public entity.  In the latter case, the hope was that the federal grant funds could be transferred as well.

Mat-Su Borough Manager John Moosey says he is not surprised to receive the letter, and that the challenge of selling the ferry has been greater than expected.   On Thursday afternoon, Moosey spoke with reporters.  He says that the borough will continue to look at options to avoid paying the full $12.3 million that the FTA is asking for.  Whatever conclusion is reached, the funds would have to come from the borough’s general fund, since there is not money currently set aside to repay the federal grants.

If the borough does not repay the grant within thirty days, the FTA says it could charge interest and eventually late payment fees.  The special meeting of the Borough Assembly to discuss the matter will take place at 6:00 pm on Tuesday, August 12th.

 

Borough Press Release

Mat-Su Borough Assembly Resumes Meetings

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

The Mat-Su Borough Assembly is back from its July break, and this week’s meeting included two issues in the Susitna Valley as well as the introduction of an ordinance that would change the way vehicle registration works in the borough.  KTNA’s Phillip Manning has more.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

On Tuesday night, the Mat-Su Borough Assembly held its first regular meeting since June.  After staff reports, the first topic on the agenda was a two-percent rate increase for the Talkeetna Sewer and Water System.  That increase has been delayed multiple times, most recently in order to wait for the results of a $100,000 state-funded study.  Those results were not final by the end of July as initially planned, so the rate increase was delayed once again.  Speaking on the subject, Assembly Member Vern Halter indicated that the ultimate rate increases will be significantly higher.

“I think Mr. Dolan sent out an e-mail a few days ago.  They’re going to ask for a thirteen percent increase for four or five years in a row, something like that, to go from red to black.” (more…)

Talkeetna Community Council Meeting for 8/4/14

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Monday’s meeting of the Talkeetna Community Council board of directors included discussion of the new library, flood issues, and Talkeetna’s sewer and water system.  The Council also covered planning for the upcoming election, which will seat as many as four new board members.  KTNA’s Phillip Manning was there, and has this report:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Before the Council began conducting regular business, it heard from Ann Yadon with the Talkeetna Public Library.  She says that the Mat-Su Borough is planning an official groundbreaking ceremony for the new library, located on the Spur Road.  The ceremony is scheduled to take place on August 21st.  What is to become of the current library building has been a topic of conversation in Talkeetna.  Ann Yadon says that decision has not yet been made. (more…)

Search Continues for Missing Fisherman Near Willow Creek

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The search for missing Missouri fisherman Jerry Warner continued on Tuesday.  Warner, 71, was reported overdue from a solo fishing trip on Sunday evening.  According to the initial report by the Alaska State Troopers on Monday, Jerry Warner walked upstream from the campground near Mile 71 of the Parks Highway  at around 11:00 am on Sunday.  He expected to be back within a few hours. The troopers say Warner was not carrying a phone or survival gear, and no clues to his whereabouts were discovered as of Tuesday afternoon.  Search efforts began Sunday night, and have been running continuously as daylight allows.   (more…)

Troopers Looking for Missing Missouri Man on Willow Creek

Monday, August 4, 2014

The Alaska State Troopers are looking for a missing fisherman in the Willow Creek area.  According to the troopers, 71 year old Jerry Warner of Missouri left the Willow Creek Resort at about 11:00 am on Sunday to go fishing by himself.  He planned to be away for a few hours.  When he did not return by 7:30 pm, the troopers were contacted and a search began.  On Sunday night, teams on foot as well as a Mat-Su Borough boat searched the creek until midnight, but found no sign of Jerry Warner.

On Monday morning the search resumed with the addition of an Alaska State Trooper helicopter and four search and rescue dog teams.  As of late Monday morning, no sign of Warner has been discovered.  According to the troopers, Warner was carrying only a fishing pole, and has no survival gear with him.

This is a developing story, and KTNA will provide updates as they become available.

Proposed Vehicle Registration Changes Could Cost Borough

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Next Tuesday, the Mat-Su Borough Assembly will hold a regular meeting for the first time since June.  One ordinance that is scheduled for introduction next Tuesday would eliminate recurring registration for older vehicles.   While that could mean less out-of-pocket expense for some drivers, KTNA’s Phillip Manning found that it could also come with trade-offs.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

The ordinance, sponsored by Assembly Member Jim Colver, takes advantage of a new state law that gives municipalities the option to allow permanent registration of vehicles that are more than eight years old.  Under the proposed system, owners would have to register the vehicle one last time and pay a $25 fee to the state, but would then be exempt from state or borough registration fees as long as the vehicle did not change ownership.

While that could mean a significant convenience for many borough residents, it’s not without a potential cost in the form of lost revenue. According to the borough’s estimates, it could mean a total loss of more than $2.4 million in revenue by fiscal year 2018.  According to Terry Dolan, Public Works Director for the borough, dust control is a major part of what the registration fees cover. (more…)

Democrat Neal Lacy on Running for House Seat 10

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

On Wednesday, Neal Lacy, Democratic candidate for District 10 of the Alaska House of Representatives, discussed the race, the legislature, and his vision for the future of the state.  KTNA’s Phillip Manning has more.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

There are three candidates running for District 10 of the Alaska House.  Democrat Neal Lacy and independent Roger Purcell are both attempting to unseat the incumbent, Republican Wes Keller.  Neal Lacy was in Talkeetna on Wednesday for Su-Valley Voice, KTNA’s public affairs program.

Neal Lacy has lived in the Mat-Su since 1975.  He is a mechanic by trade, as well as a former Mat-Su Borough School District teacher and school board member.  During the show, he laid out his political platform. (more…)

Port MacKenzie Poised For Post-Oil Economy

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

By: Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage

Earlier this month, the Matanuska Susitna Borough’s Port MacKenzie took on a load of sixteen miles of cement-coated pipe from a foreign vessel.  The pipe now rests at the Port, awaiting shipment to Nikiski to be used in construction of a new Cook Inlet oil platform. As KSKA’s Ellen Lockyer reports, although the pipe shipment has boosted Borough revenues,  some are asking questions about whether the port will ever be profitable.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Port MacKenzie director Marc VanDongen says the load of cement – coated pipe proves the Port’s heavy lifting capabilities:

“Each piece of pipe is 42 feet long and it weighs 10,500 pounds. So we were lifting four pieces of pipe at a time off the ship, 42, 000 pounds at a time, and placing them on flatbed trucks. “ (more…)

Page optimized by WP Minify WordPress Plugin