News briefs


Photo courtesy Kathryn Hawkins/CVEA

Kathryn Hawkins was named winner (three times) in CVEAs photo contest where co-op members compete for a coveted front page photo to be featured in the Ruralite publication. Other winners for the 2013 cover shots are Carl Crosman, Bob Benda, and Vic Bruss.

Fire guts storage building

An early morning fire Dec. 20, gutted a storage building on the Harris Sand & Gravel property on Airport Rd. according to the Valdez Fire Dept.

“The cause of the fire is undetermined but is suspected to be caused from the power fluctuations,” Fire chief George Keeney said in a press release.

Electrical service had disrupted in the entire service area of Copper Valley Electric Association the night before.

“At 10:21 p.m., Wednesday, Dec.19, damage to an insulator located behind the Valdez Senior Center caused a total system power outage affecting all CVEA members,” a press release issued by CVEAs Sharon Crisp said. “Power was restored to the majority of affected members by 10:56 p.m., while some of downtown Valdez, and the Black Gold and Mineral Creek Subdivisions, remained out. After crews located the damage and began repairs, these areas came back on-line at varying times.”

Crisp said the entire system was fully restored by 3:32 a.m., December 20. The blaze was reported to VFD at 3:01 a.m. The building and most contents are a total loss.

VHS cross country ski race this weekend

This year's annual Valdez Invite will be taking place on January 4-5 according the Valdez High School ski coach Pete Toye. About 150 athletes from Colony, West Valley, Palmer, Wasilla, and SuValley will be joining the Valdez Buccaneers in what Toye said will be a “great weekend of racing.” Friday's relay begins at 3:45 p.m. at the U.S. Coast Guard Housing unit on Hanagita. Saturday's classic race starts at 11:00 a.m. at the same location. An open 5.4K freestyle town race will take place at 2 p.m. This race is free to the public. Due to the need for maintaining the integrity of the course as well as for everyone's safety, the Mineral Creek Road will be closed to all motor and foot traffic from 7 a.m. Friday until 5 p.m. Saturday. As always, motorized traffic is prohibited from the East Dike but foot traffic will be allowed below the USCG start area.

“Thank you very much for your understanding and consideration in this important matter,” Toye said in a written statement.

Teachers and District reach contract agreement

Valdez City Schools and its teachers agreed to a three year contract Dec. 10, ending a months long impasse between the district and educators. Teachers have been working without a contract since the school year began last August. According to a press release issued by district superintendent Jacob Jensen, the three-year contract provides a one-time gross stipend payment of $1,535.18, and a 1 percent increase in salary each year, beginning in the 2013/14 school year.

Tony Gorman photo

Electrical fluctuations associated with the power outages on Dec. 19 is being eyed as the culprit behind the fire on the Harris Sand & Gravel property that gutted a storage building.


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