The Valdez Star - Serving Prince William Sound and Copper River Basin

News briefs


Tony Gorman photo

Sen. John Coghill, who represents Valdez in District F in the Alaska Legislature, was hard at work in his Juneau in recent weeks. Coghill, like other legislators, are awaiting new legislative boundaries after a court ruling forced the Alaska Redistricting Board to redraw house districts in the state. Valdez is waiting to see the new potential boundaries, which could put Coghill, and House District 12 Rep. Eric Feige, outside Valdez voting lines.

Grounded Crowley tug in port

The US Coast Guard said the Crowley tugboat Bulwark was safely towed to Port Valdez last Wednesday after it reported a “soft grounding” in Nelson Bay on the evening of March 13. Divers inspected the hull of the tug before it was towed to Valdez by the tugboat Guardian. There were no injuries or pollution reported in the grounding according to spokeswoman Lt. j.g. Allie Ferko of the Coast Guard.

VHS at Arctic Games

Three teenage athletes from Valdez were selected to participate in the Arctic Winter Games in Whitehorse, Canada according to Randy Holbrook. He said the young women traveled to the games the week of March 4-10. Two of the teens, Chaylene Mills and Sidne Mann, were on the female volleyball team and brought home gold medals - without losing a match the entire week. They were on the team with other teens from Anchorage, Palmer, and Juneau. Athlete Shoney Ridderbush competed in the Arctic Sports division and was part of five different competitions in that category.

Record snowman plans scrapped

Courtesy Google Maps

The Crowley tugboat Bulwark “soft grounded” in Nelson Bay on the evening of March 13. It was ordered by the Coast Guard to return to Port Valdez after a damage assessment found it was still sound.

Plans to build a record-breaking snowman in Valdez are melting away according to organizer Ronnie Houchin, student services director for Prince William Sound Community College. Houchin said a lack of engineering plans for the project caused the city – and its snow moving machinery – to step back from the project, which had been slated to begin Sunday, March 18. Organizers had asked for city support on the snowman, which would have needed to reach a height exceeding 123 feet to break the Guinness World Record. “Right now we’re kind of in a holding pattern,” Houchin said.

Redistricting board meets again

The Alaska Redistricting Board plans to meet later this month to begin redrawing the state's political boundaries after the March 14 decision from the Alaska Supreme Court ordered the board to follow the process laid out in an earlier court case, Hickel v. Southeast Conference. Meetings are scheduled from March 26-31 to work toward adopting a new plan. “Our entire district (for both House and Senate) could change,” said Sheri Pierce, city clerk for the City of Valdez. “It’s a possibility.”

Pierce said city administrators and elected officials will be monitoring the process, which will not allow for public input. “This, we’re going to have to watch really close.”


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