Letters to the editor

Trawler fleets to blame for king salmon losses

In reference to a July 26 letter in the Anchorage Daily News, “Kings need our help,” Mr. Fjelstad says “1.5 billion hatchery pinks will result in lower returns of Red and King Salmon.”

First, red and king salmon don’t even eat the same food as pink salmon. Secondly, silvers, chums and kings, being 3, 4 and 5-year returning species, move much deeper and further out into the Gulf of Alaska’s upwelling than do pink salmon and reds. Kings, being much larger, are able to move well into the Pacific, becoming vulnerable to multi-national trawler fleets whose record for violation of international fishery is well documented. As well, we have the U.S. trawlers with their, alleged, incidental catch records.

For the sportfish lobby to suggest denying any other user group their constitutional right of access to a common resource will put the sport and commercial user groups right where the politically powerful international packing corporations want them: at each others’ throats. Closing any king salmon fishery to any user group will only enhance the harvest levels of king, silver and chum salmon for the foreign fleets.

So, all user groups of the above mentioned species must be prudent enough to move the federal court for declaratory judgment against joint foreign and U.S. packing companies as well as to enjoin the North Pacific Fisheries Management Council as third party defendant for criminal acts in the management of U.S. fishery esources.

Anything else at this point in time will lead to the eventual loss of of all of the above salmon species, coast wide,i n little more than a decade. As Mr. Fjelstad stated in his letter,” I don’t think future generations would appreciate or understand why we allowed Alaska’s King Salmon population to be decimated.”

John A. Anderson, Kenai

Senate responsible for robbing PFD

Alaska may be the Titanic who wishes to believe that it’s unsinkable even though those of us in third class are already drowning. Neither political party has any answers to the cold waters fast approaching. Our Permanent Fund Dividend has been held ransom by a corrupt political elite, “first class,” while I am barely able to keep my head above water. They won’t allow a state income tax to “rob their savings.”

In fact my family is being taxed with the withholding of PFD dollars at many more times the percentage rate of these “poor” folks worried about a little state income tax. The recent ads attacking Rep. Paul Seaton by “District 31 Republicans” try to paint this picture that he stole the PFD and they wish to restore it.

Really? The Senate leadership I hold totally responsible for the robbing of the PFD. I am ashamed of the government of this state. Do they wish this state to bottom out so they can dip into the that old “savings account” and buy up properties at cut rate prices? Neither political party has any interests in the people they are said to represent. The government of this state represents big money and oil interests only.

One side wishes to restore the PFD and cut more spending while raising no new taxes. This is such a naive and callous view. The Republicans in this state do not represent the working class. I applaud Paul Seaton for realizing this and the courage to take a stand. I also find Bill Walker to have done the best he could with his hands tied by the senate.

What sort of state do we wish to live in? We must have new revenue to stay afloat. Gas line? A state income tax? Vote.

Stephen Overdorf

Orchestra appreciates JEMCO Fund

The Kenai Peninsula Orchestra would like to thank the JEMCO Fund, a donor advised fund at the Homer Foundation, for supporting the orchestra’s percussion equipment project. KPO is in the process of upgrading and acquiring new professional quality percussion instruments that will be available for rehearsals in Ninilchik as well as performances in the southern and central peninsula.

This generous support has allowed the orchestra to purchase a professional set of concert bells, which will make their debut at the orchestra’s Aug. 10 gala concert at the Mariner Theatre.

Scott Bartlett, Kenai Peninsula Orchestra Board of Directors

Salmon bust problem not just a habitat issue

Stand For Salmon has a desire to restore Alaska’s salmon populations but it wants to do it by only addressing salmon habitat. Alaska’s salmon bust problems are not that simple. Unfortunately there are many offenders to blame for our current salmon bust problems.

Blaming only habitat issues for salmon bust, while ignoring user groups, is like trying to catch a serial murderer by regulating the park the murders are committed in. You catch a murderer by going after the murderer, not by regulating the environment they are murdering in.

User groups are busy slaughting billions of salmon while Stand for Salmon is busy trying to regulate only salmon habitat. Our salmon bust problems are local, and foreign user groups slaughtering billions of our salmon period. We can end our salmon bust problems by directly addressing the people who are killing our salmon.

Alaska could address these people by charging a straight salmon tax for each salmon kill by anyone. A solution can be reached by increasing the tax until users either cannot afford to kill salmon or pay enough tax to finance a salmon solution. A salmon tax would guarantee a salmon solution either way. Minor habitat impacts could then be addressed after reducing major user group impacts.

Donald Johnson, Soldotna

Sprout thanks Homer Foundation

Thank you to the City of Homer through the Homer Foundation for providing Sprout Family Services with general operating funds. We appreciate the support and funding our city provides to nonprofits in the community. With operating funds, we can bolster our programs in methods that might be otherwise challenging. Here are some ways we used the grant money this year to support children and families: new training materials, a projector for parenting workshops, books for the Imagination Library program and a new desk.

The years between birth and kindergarten are a vital time to lay the foundation for later success in school, work and relationships. Sprout Family Services is here to support families with children 0-5 years, by offering information, activities, caring and qualified staff, and access to books, toys and other needed baby supplies. Thanks to the City of Homer, we can give more families the opportunity to “Grow up with Sprout.”


Jillian Lush, executive director

Sprout Family Services

Win – Win solution for Dorothy Drive concerns

Three landowners at the end of Dorothy Drive have filed a petition to vacate rights-of-way near Bear Canyon and Skyline Drive. Unfortunately this would block access to an existing, popular, 100-year-old hiking trail that has seen substantial use. “Private Property,” “No Trespassing” signs have sprung up to eliminate public access to this trail.

Trail users respect the privacy of the landowners at the top of the hill. We consciously avoided the homes at the top of the bluff when hiking or skiing. If successful with blocking Dorothy Drive, the landowners hope to vacate the pedestrian easement on the section line that is now the only legal access to the top of the bluff from established trails in the Canyon Trails subdivision. This section line has been cleared for pedestrian access, and is the only legal, feasible access to the top of the bluff for several miles. This pedestrian traffic would prefer to not see the homes near the section line.

Instead of stirring up anxiety and hard feelings between homeowners who want their privacy, and trail users who want to avoid the homeowners and keep the peace, a simple solution would be to create an easement on the existing trail along the rim of Bear Canyon. Hikers could use the trail which would be routed out of sight of all the homes. This easement would join the existing trails in Canyon Trails and provide legal access to Bellamy Drive and the section line access to the Lookout Mountain trails. These trails are noted/approved in the 2004 Homer Nonmotorized Transportation and Trails Plan.

Dorothy Drive residents could keep their privacy and never see the trail users. Hikers could enjoy their hike, stay on the legal trail, and have access to Skyline hiking and skiing possibilities to the north.

Hike on, Homer.

Kevin Walker

Blockade brought down

We, Dwight and Diann Glanville, hereby temporarily remove the blockage from the Glanville bridge. We do this under duress to allow the parties residing on our property and the adjoining property belonging to Joey and Tonda Allred to leave our properties. Due to the court system and Alaska laws, they allow those illegally on our properties to drive our highways without licenses (due to DUI), insurance and registration, run vehicles through the Anchor River, and give these people extra time to rob us blind.

We hereby wash our hands. The blockade was placed there to protect the public from harm caused by these people. Remember our problems when you vote. Senate Bill 91 must go.

Dwight and Diann Glanville

Thanks Homer

I would like to send a heartfelt thank you to everyone in Homer who sent condolences and well wishes after Mary passed away in June. I am sorry that I have not been able to thank you all individually. The number of cards, text messages, emails, and phone calls I received from Homer was overwhelming and for me, very emotional. It touched me deeply and helped to lift my spirits. I cannot adequately express what it means to me.

Mary truly loved living in Homer. She said that Homer “suited her” and that she felt at home there. She said that Homer enriched her in many ways and that being there fed her soul. She never missed an opportunity to remind me that we were moving back when we “retired” for real. Mary will be coming home soon when we spread her ashes on one of her favorite Homer beaches.

There will be a celebration of Mary’s life in Anchorage on Saturday, Sept. 8. beginning at 3:30 p.m. For more information, go to https://www.sites.google.com/view/celebrating-mary-mcburney/home.

Walt Wrede, Anchorage

Get ready to vote

I know the moose hunting season on the Kenai Peninsula is gearing up, but it’s also time to sharpen your pencil and get ready to do your civic duty. That’s right, it’s time to go cast your ballot and vote. There are three elections coming up in the next four months. Two Tuesdays from now, Aug. 21, we Alaskans are voting in the State of Alaska primary. Then on the first Tuesday of October, there are Borough and city elections. Following that, the first Tuesday in November we will be voting in the State of Alaska’s regular election.

As a voter, it is important to know who is running and what Measures are going to be on the ballot. Be a responsible voter. Please don’t be a voter who has their head in the sand, and say I’m just too busy or my vote doesn’t matter.

Voting is a basic ingredient in keeping our democracy alive. I don’t care who you vote for, but do the right thing and vote. If not, our system of democracy will wane even further.

Plan ahead and read about the candidates and the ballot measures. The Alaska Division of Elections is a good place to start to educate yourself and get information. Talk to your friends, neighbors, and family to remind them that they have a duty/responsibility to vote.

Alex Koplin, Kenai Peninsula Votes

On Trump’s undocumented immigrants policy

In one sense it’s good that people are responding to, and demanding answers from, the Trump administration to the news-media’s selective focus on emotionally wrenching images and scenes of immigrant children being separated from their undocumented parents.

In another sense, however, it’s paranoia — just as the “birther” issue about President Obama was for some conservatives —- to suggest that the government immigration system is staffed by psychopaths, misogynists and sadists, instead of basically normal (and flawed) humans overwhelmed by a sudden change in immigration policy. In both cases people have let their suspicions overwhelm their rationality. But a little objective research will clarify that Trump’s immigration policy, contrary to Obama’s lax enforcement, is a proper application of the law of the land as created and approved by your friendly congresspersons. Senators Murkowski and Sullivan are naturally cautious about upsetting the apple cart.

Personally, I’m opposed to policy by paranoia.

Larry Slone

Thanks for Ritzy help

The Pratt Museum held its Ritzy Garden Gala on July 28 to celebrate 50 years of community, stewardship, and outreach. The Museum is especially grateful to the following sponsors and artists for their role in creating a successful fundraiser:

Our sincere thanks to: (Sponsors) First National Bank Alaska, Ravn Alaska, Ninilchik Traditional Council, Patrons of the Pratt Society, Bay Excursions, Beachy Construction, Patrice Krant and Rick Rosenbloom, Nancy Levinson, Peter and Jo Michalski, John and Rika Mouw, Bob Neubauer and Nan York, Peninsula Radiation Oncology Center, Petro Marine Services, Mel Strydom and Nadya Klingel, Linda and Ken Rowell, Ron and Turid Senungetuk, William and June Carter, Tom Collopy and Mary Frische, Roger and Denice Clyne, Robert and Jane Alyson Dickson, Homer Electric Association, Homer Tours, Sharon Gleason, Bernard and Rebekah Griffard, Flo Larson, Mary McBurney and Walt Wrede, Joe and Joan Mello, Debbie and Jack Oudiz, David and Marga Raskin, Paul and Tina Seaton, Rita Sholton, Bill Smith, Spenard Builder’s Supply, Ulmers Drug and Hardware; (Artists) Kate Boyan, Jen DePesa, Joan Dodd, Leslie Klaar, Debra Lowney, Lynda Reed, Jane Regar, George Overpeck, Britni Siekaniec, Kathy Smith, Alexandra Sonneborn, Franco Venuti, Eileen Wythe, Jenna and Paul Yost.

Laurie Stuart, Pratt Museum Director

Tell Vance no — again

Sarah Vance has a difficult time listening to her community. It’s fairly obvious she has dreams of becoming a career politician. So far she has had little success.

Sarah Vance grew up in Homer but wants to change Homer into something different, I’m not even sure what exactly, but her methods are unsound, her attitude, troublesome.

If you will recall, Sarah Vance was the spokesperson for oddly Orwellian-like named Heartbeat of Homer (meanwhile zero understanding of the actual pulse of the town), the group that tried unsuccessfully to recall duly-elected Homer City Council members whom she personally disagreed with.

That was the first time we said no to Sarah Vance. Her group opened a wound with that costly, unnecessary recall election in Homer and then after they lost, they kept poking that wound, keeping it raw, all along paying zero attention to reality.

After Sarah Vance didn’t get her way, she decided to run for city council herself.

Homer said no thank you, again. No thank you Sarah Vance, we do not like your policies.

Sarah Vance is pretty tenacious, and she doesn’t like being told “pass”.

Now Sarah Vance has decided to run for Alaska State House, leapfrogging her hometown that said no to her, twice, to continue onward and upward with her dreams of a political career.

Its time for us once again to say no thank you to Sarah Vance. All of Alaska. This time the stakes are higher, because although we have not given her this town’s support, if she wins this seat she effectively has been given de-facto support from Homer because she is from here and no one outside of this community will know the battle that raged to keep her from misrepresenting our nature here in Homer.

Together we can tell Sarah Vance no for the third time and hopefully she will decide change her policies and represent the town correctly or will choose a different career.

Chris Needham

Inhumane hunting methods should be banned

The Department of the Interior National Park Service will allow inhumane hunting methods to ensue on hibernating bears, wolves and their young. Allowing these hunting methods to ensue will affect the economic growth of Alaska, deplete the wildlife and alter the ecosystem.

A statewide poll showed that 71 percent of Alaska voters strongly support the elimination of these cruel hunting practices. Wildlife is what generates tourism in Alaska. Wildlife watchers outnumber hunters by nearly five to one in Alaska and spend five times more than hunters. In 2017, tourists generated $2 billion dollars which supported the local economy and thousands of jobs.

A study reported in Scientific American has shown culling native carnivores to protect animals such as moose and caribou does not translate to a balance in the ecosystem but actually causes more harm. In comparison, a female bear protecting her young is no different than a human protecting hers. We all have a unique purpose for being here. The wildlife that remains in Alaska is part of what makes it the last frontier, which is the exact reason people go to Alaska — to experience something they cannot experience anywhere else. The Department of the Interior is still taking public comments at this time.

Nicole Rojas, Willow Springs, Illinois