Local News

Permit for Herring Cove tour operators?

A few public hearings will kick off Monday’s Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly meeting. The hearings provide the public an opportunity to comment on ordinances, including two that would expand development options at the borough-run airport, and appropriate about $62,000 in cruise ship head tax funds to the City of Ketchikan for improvements at the downtown dock.

Also on the agenda is a presentation about ways to improve congestion at Herring Cove, a popular destination for summertime tourists. An earlier report suggested infrastructure improvements, but the Assembly directed staff to come up with options.

The proposed solution would establish a program to issue permits for commercial tour operators taking passengers to Herring Cove. The permit would require the operator to have an off-street parking area at the destination and proof that the driver is trained in pedestrian safety. A permit fee or cruise head-tax funds could pay for the staff position needed to administer the program.

Another option would be to establish a new service area. Then that service area would hire an enforcement officer to make sure parking and safety rules are followed.

Also on Monday, the Assembly will consider a resolution reiterating the borough’s opposition to a “no-action” alternative for the state Department of Transportation’s Gravina Access Project. State DOT and Federal Highway Administration officials are scheduled to start preparing the Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement for that project next week.

The Assembly meeting starts at 5:30 p.m. in Borough Assembly chambers. Public comment will be heard at the start of the meeting.

Recent News

City Council defers premium pay issue

Ketchikan Fire Department
The Ketchikan City Council deferred action Thursday on the issue of premium pay for assistant managers filling in for department heads, instead asking the city manager to provide more information. more

Metlakatla group plans canoe trip to B.C.

A colorful canoe is towed from Saxman after a group of paddlers landed and disembarked in August 2013.
About two years ago, a group of First Nations and Alaska Native canoeists paddled from Canada’s northwest coast, across the U.S. border to Alaska’s only Indian reservation, on Annette Island. Now, a group is planning a return journey, paddling the same route back toward the Tsimshian Native community’s roots in British Columbia. more