Local News

News

The Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA) has approved applications allowing Cook Inlet Pipeline Company (CIPL) to proceed full speed ahead with construction and rerouting of oil and gas lines in Cook Inlet and on both sides.

The goal is to ship crude oil from the inlet directly to the Andeavor refinery in Nikiski. That will allow Hilcorp Alaska to close the Drift River tank farm and dismantle it. The farm at the mouth of the Drift River, is regularly threatened by volcanic eruptions from Mount Redoubt.

 

The governor was in town earlier in the week for a rural development forum in Soldotna and we got some face time with him at the Soldotna library. We started off with AK LNG and how that project is coming amid China’s trade disputes with the Trump administration, and we’ll also touch on how rising oil prices are affecting the budget conversation in Juneau.

 


 

The dynamic between the Soldotna city council and the mayor will remain the same, after the council rejected a move to change the mayor’s job description.

 

 


City of Kenai Dipnet app

 

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has issued two emergency orders restricting the harvest of sockeye salmon on the Kenai River.

Jay Barrett/KDLL

Political signs have returned to Kenai Peninsula roadsides, blooming right on schedule between dandelions and orange hawkweed. By the time the fireweed has gone to seed, we'll be tired of them -- if they're still around.

Placing temporary signage is likely the most misunderstood and disobeyed law in Alaska. But there is one simple rule of campaign signs in the State of Alaska and it is this: If a campaign sign can be read from a state roadway, then it is illegal and should be taken down.

Shaylon Cochran/KDLL

 

Primaries for state offices races are less than a month away. The Kenai and Soldotna Chambers of Commerce hosted a candidate forum for Senate District O Wednesday, with Republican incumbent Peter Micciche and his challenger Ron Gillham fielding questions on everything from health care to the Pebble mine to how to use the state’s permanent fund.

 

 


Wasteland Hop

If you like your fusion music with beer and art, a Fort Collins, Colorado, band has got you hooked up Wednesday night. Wasteland Hop, which despite the name is not a hip-hop band. However, they do have some spoken-word in their songs and do have an MC.

Fiddler Liz Baylor says trying to figure out what to call the music they make has been a “major hitch” since the band members started playing together six years ago.

Starting next month customers of Alaska's largest telecommunications company will finally start getting one bill for their services. Until now, GCI customers have received two bills if they happened to have more than one of the company's services, such as mobile voice and data, landline phone, internet and cable TV. 

Heather Handyside is the senior director of corporate communications with GCI.

Kenai National Wildlife Refuge managers have closed three campgrounds on the Kenai Peninsula to tent camping after an early morning bear encounter on Saturday.

Refuge managers received reports of a black bear damaging a camper’s tent in the Refuge’s Lower Ohmer Campground and scratching the single occupant.

This week’s sport fishing report is dominated by news of new catch-and-release only regulations for king salmon on the very lowest portions of the Kenai River. 

The regulations went into effect on Wednesday morning in that section from the Kenai River mouth to the regulatory marker approximately 300 yards downriver of Slikok Creek.

Thursday was an especially deadly day on the roads near the Sterling Highway.

Yesterday around mile 58.7 afternoon at about 1:23 p.m. Troopers received a report of a rock that went through the windshield of a Volkswagen GTI hatchback, striking the middle passenger in the back, before bouncing back out of the car. Killed was 8-year-old Noah Schwebach of Eagle River.

Though the rock was about the size of a volleyball no one else in the Hatchback was injured. Next of kin was on scene.

Shaylon Cochran/KDLL

It’s the midway point for the Kenai river personal-use fishery and the sockeye are still just trickling in. KDLL’s Shaylon Cochran caught up with some dipnetters fishing near the Warren Ames Bridge late Friday morning, achieving various levels of success.


www.ozobot.com

 

Young or old, few of us can get by these days without at least some occasional computer work. The Soldotna library recently received a grant that will help with basic digital literacy all the way up to coding.

 

 


Jenny Neyman/KDLL

July on the Kenai Peninsula means one thing to most people — fishing. Even if you don’t put a line in the water, it’s likely your friends, neighbors, co-workers or certainly the people in line ahead of you at the store do.

The Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Visitors Center has you covered this week.

“Fish week at the refuge is all about everything fish, so, not just fishing, but we started out on Tuesday talking about the anatomy of fish and what fish need to survive — so, habitat and what makes a healthy stream. Things like that,” said Leah Eskelin, park ranger with the visitors services department at the refuge.


 


Six candidates are lined up to challenge Congressman Don Young this fall. Two of them were in Kenai for a Chamber of Commerce-sponsored candidate forum Wednesday.

Jenny Neyman/KDLL

The Kasilof River has been open to dip-netting since June 25. Newly expanded facilities and parking area on the north shore of the river mouth means easier access for dip-netters. Easier access means more visitors. And more people can mean more trash left behind.

That’s where the Stream Watch program comes in.

“If you’d like you can grab a bag and help yourself to cleaning up the roads or a little bit of the beach and the parking lot,” said Terese Schomogyi, a summer intern with the Kenai Watershed Forum’s Stream Watch program, which organizes volunteers to do restoration, protection and education programs along sensitive sections of waterways on the Kenai Peninsula.


Photo by Jenny Neyman

The July rush is in full swing, with residents and visitors trying to cram in as much summer activity as possible. But one aspect of Kenai Peninsula life has been quieter than usual this year — wildfire season.


 

Whether at the assembly or at the ballot box, the debate about borough sales tax won’t be ending any time soon.

 

Thursday was a slightly better day for sockeye returns to the Kenai river. But some of those fish coming back have raised a little curiosity.

 

The city of Soldotna has looked at expanding its footprint at various times over the years. The most recent effort goes back almost two years and has potential economic implications for residents, businesses and the city.

 

 


ADOT

It will be a couple of seasons and result in enough delays and inconvenience that by the time the Kenai Spur Highway rehabilitation project from Soldotna to Kenai is done, it will be a welcome relief. That’s because the project will extend five-lane blacktop the entire distance between the Twin Cities.

 

How active a voice should Soldotna’s mayor have? That was a question for debate at Wednesday night’s city council meeting.

 

A new route for the Kenai Spur Highway has been decided, should it be needed. But many other questions remain about the AK LNG Project.

City of Kenai officials will be closing access to the Kenai River's Soth Beach tonight and are warning dipnetters not to camp there or on the North Beach.

The reason are extreme high tides overnight that could pose hazards to campers. 

The morning tide Thursday at 3:54 a.m. is forecast to be 23 feet, followed by Friday morning's 4:44 a.m. high tide of 24 feet, and Saturday morning’s high tide at 5:44 will be nearly 25 feet.

Late Tuesday night the National Weather Service in Anchorage issued a special weather statement for high water levels expected on the Kenai River below Skilak Lake.

Water levels on the Kenai River are reported at bank-full just below Skilak Lake and at Kenai Keys, and they are expected to continue rising over the next few days, potentially peaking less than a foot over minor flood stage.

No widespread flooding is expected at this time, but low lying areas may have standing water ponding on them.

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