Jenny Neyman

General Manager

Jenny Neyman has been the general manager of KDLL since 2017. Before that she was a reporter and the Morning Edition host at KDLL.
She also worked in print journalism for 15 years, including 7.5 years as owner, publisher and editor of the Redoubt Reporter community newspaper in the central Kenai Peninsula.
She holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Whitworth University in Spokane, WA, and grew up listening to KSTK public radio in Wrangell, AK.

Voters in the city of Kenai will have three choices for two city council seats Oct. 6. Incumbents Henry Knackstead and Tim Navarre are running for reelection. Challenger Teea Winger is running her second campaign for a council seat. The top two vote-gets will be seated for a three-year term.

All three grew up in Kenai. Knackstead is a civil engineer, Navarre is a business owner and Winger is a full-time mom.

At a Kenai Chamber of Commerce forum held Sept. 16, Knackstead and Navarre said they would continue the positive progress made to better promote the city, improve the financial outlook and free up airport and other city land for development. Winger said she’d bring new voices to the council.

“I am definitely a lot younger, trying to engage people more my age and the younger voters,” Winger said. “So that’s definitely what’s going to set me out is I can bring fresh new thoughts and ways of doing things to the council.”

There weren’t any huge disagreements between the candidates, though. All three are on the same page with the importance of completing the city’s decades-long push to stabilize the bluff in Old Town.

Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities

The Alaska Department of Transportation is trying to wrap up road projects before winter sets in. Drivers should expect delays for the next couple of weeks. In Kenai, Bridge Access Road paving is scheduled from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sept 19 through Sept. 21. That’ll result in one-lane traffic and delays of 15 to 20 minutes.

On the Seward Highway, from Mile 37 to 52 near Summit, DOT is switching to day work in its passing lane project. Warmer day-time temperatures are better for paving. Construction hours are now 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

City of Kenai

A Kenai City Councilman was charged with driving under the influence Saturday. Robert Peterkin was arrested by Kenai Police at about 1:45 a.m. Saturday near Mile 11 of the Kenai Spur Highway. Peterkin, 52, was charged with DUI and violating conditions of release, relating to a previous charge of driving under the influence in June in Homer.

Residents Kenai and Soldotna with income affected by COVID-19 can get help with their rent or mortgage payments through the end of the year.

The cities are partnering with the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation to localize an assistance program AHFC started this summer.

City residents can apply for up to $1,200 each month, to be paid directly to the mortgage holder or landlord. The relief amount will be the lesser of the household’s drop in income or whatever their housing payment is each month. It’s for households that earn less than 80 percent of the median area income. For the Kenai Peninsula Borough, that’s $71,760. Households must be able to show income has been negatively affected by COVID.

“Their income has to have been impacted by COVID 19,” said Laura Rhyner, assistant to the Soldotna city manager. “So, either they’ve lost employment or they had a reduction in hours. Or maybe they had to leave work to stay home and care for kids that aren’t able to attend school — something like that.”

Jenny Neyman/KDLL

Driving through Cooper Landing lately, it’s hard not to notice the swath of trees cut down north of the highway. Or what will become the old highway as the new alignment of the Sterling Highway is built between miles 45 and 60.

This is the first year of noticeable construction on the project.

Project Manager Sean Holland, with the Alaska Department of Transportation, says it’s going well, all things considered.

“We were struck with a fire last year so our survey got shut down for six or eight weeks, and then we come up with a pandemic this year so I don’t know if it could get any worse next year but we’re still making good progress anyway,” Holland said.