Aaron Bolton

News Director

Aaron Bolton is excited to come on board at KBBI after spending his first year reporting in the state at KSTK in Wrangell. He grew up in southern Minnesota and graduated from the University of Minnesota in 2015 with a degree in professional journalism.

Prior to Alaska, Aaron reported for Radio K in Minneapolis. He spent his free time going to local concerts and promoting shows and music festivals. Since making the move, he has spent his time in the backcountry snowboarding whenever possible.

Ways to Connect

Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

The Alaska Board of Fisheries will kick off its annual work session in Anchorage Monday and salmon hatcheries will once again be a prominent topic of discussion. The board will consider whether to add issues surrounding production levels to future agendas and it will kick off a broader discussion on the hatchery industry Tuesday.

Disagreements over salmon hatcheries have been roiling over the past few years, and those arguments have played out at Board of Fish meetings.

Courtesy of Rudy Gustafson

Today on the Coffee Table, it's a Fishermen's Academy. Homer fisherman and President of the North Pacific Fisheries Association Malcolm Milne, Alaska Board of Fisheries member Robert Ruffner and Homer fisherman and North Pacific Fishery Management Council member Buck Laukitis join KBBI News Director Aaron Bolton to explain how fishermen and other stakeholders can get involved in the policy making process. 

Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly

After a roughly two-year court battle, a state superior court judge ruled Tuesday that the Kenai Peninsula Borough’s invocation policy is unconstitutional. However, this may not be the end of the road for the case. The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly still needs to decide whether to appeal Tuesday’s ruling.  

The court’s decision found that the borough assembly’s 2016 rewrite of its invocation policy took a step toward establishing an official religion by excluding “minority faiths,” therefore violating the state Constitution’s Establishment Clause.  

Courtesy of the Kenai Peninsula Borough

The final results are in for the Kenai Peninsula Borough’s municipal elections, but there were no big surprises coming out of the official vote count.

Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly member Willy Dunne will return for his second and final three-year term. Dunne led his opponent Troy Jones by 85 votes as polls closed last week. He nearly doubled his lead as absentee, mail-in and questioned ballots were counted throughout the week.

Image Courtesy of the City of Homer

Ken Castner was sworn in as Homer’s mayor during the Homer City Council’s regular meeting Monday. Castner beat former council member David Lewis in first run for public office. Castner will join the council at its next meeting on Oct. 22.

He replaces current Mayor Bryan Zak. Zak did not run for re-election due to health reasons.

Council members Heath Smith and Donna Aderhold were also sworn in Monday. Both ran unopposed this election cycle and will be serving their second terms. 

Courtesy of the International Halibut Commission

The North Pacific Fishery Management Council, or NPFMC, took a step during its meeting Monday toward regulating unguided boats that anglers pay to use for halibut fishing. The council may require those boats to be registered and may also impose more restrictive charter bag limits on the customers that utilize them.

Courtesy of John Clutts

A vehicle crashed through the front wall of the Anchor Point Post Office Friday. According to Alaska State Troopers, officers responded to the two calls alerting them that a Ford Explorer had crashed into the building shortly before 2 p.m. this afternoon.

An officer at the scene did not identify the driver who is said to have accidently pushed the gas pedal instead of the brake. Both troopers and first responders at the scene said no one was hurt in the incident, though the post office was open at the time of the crash.

KBBI

Some of Alaska’s seafood industry has escaped the Trump administration’s trade war with China for now. The industry is happy the administration dropped some mainstay seafood products from a list of tariffs it imposed last week.

The Trump administration levied billions of dollars worth of tariffs on the world’s second largest economy on Sept. 24.  The tariffs start at 10 percent and will ratchet up to 25 percent by 2019. The Trump administration’s original list of levies included seafood products that Alaska processors export to China for reprocessing.

Photo Courtesy of South Peninsula Hospital

The final vote count isn’t in quite yet, but Kenai Peninsula Borough voters overwhelmingly approved two bond propositions Tuesday that will shift both the Central Peninsula and South Peninsula hospitals’ service area boundaries.

The CPH service area will move about 15 miles south to Barbara Drive in Ninilchik. SPH’s boundary will expand to include all communities on the south side of Kachemak Bay except for Seldovia.

Renee Gross, KBBI News

Wednesday was the very first national test of the Wireless Emergency Alert System, and there are reports that some phones in Alaska and across the country did not receive the test message. State and federal officials are now working to sort out the kinks.

Millions of Americans’ phones made a strange noise Wednesday as the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, tested the Wireless Emergency Alert System. But some phones did not go off, including here at KBBI.

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