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

Photo Courtesy of John Cox

John Cox is one of three candidates running in the House District 31 Republican primary to face incumbent Paul Seaton. The Anchor Point business owner served in the Navy for 30 years, has sat on several local boards and is currently the commander of the Anchor Point VFW. He says his collective experience gives him the best chance to beat Seaton in the general election this fall.

Alaska State Troopers

Alaska State Troopers say five commercial fishing vessels illegally caught and transported thousands of pounds of salmon near Homer in late July.

According to a trooper dispatch released Monday,  a wildlife trooper observed operators of the fishing vessels Little Star, Relentless, Northstar and Windstar working together in Dog Fish Bay south of Homer to drive salmon out of waters closed to commercial seining and into areas open for commercial harvest. Troopers say the vessels harvested fish in closed waters as well.

U.S. Coast Guard

The U.S. Coast Guard medevaced a man from a commercial fishing vessel near Cordova Saturday. The 51-year-old was aboard the F/V Devotion about 35 miles southwest of Cordova.

According to a Coast Guard press release, a nearby charter vessel notified responders that the man had fallen and sustained a head injury.

A MH-60 Jayhawk aircrew stationed in Kodiak responded to the scene. The man was transferred to a nearby tugboat before he was airlifted to Cordova for medical treatment.

Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

Anchor Point residents are looking to form neighborhood watch groups following complaints that Alaska State Troopers aren't responding to calls. Tensions are rising over the perception that crime in the area is spiking, though crime stats aren't available.

Photo courtesy of Paul Seaton.

Campaign season is in full swing on the southern Kenai Peninsula and aside from asking residents, businesses and political groups to throw up campaign signs, candidates in House District 31 are asking for their money as well.  

The only competitive primary race in House District 31 this election cycle is on the Republican side. Three candidates are vying for the party’s support and chance to face incumbent and former Republican Paul Seaton in the general election.

Rudy Gustafson

Halibut ex-vessel prices are seeing a slight uptick around the state, which is good news for some fishermen after prices fell about $2 per pound at the beginning of the season.

Doug Bowen works for Alaska Boats and Permits, a vessel and fishing permit broker in Homer. Bowen tracks halibut prices around the Gulf of Alaska, which have a significant influence on the halibut quota he sells for fishermen.  

“We did see the ex-vessel price for halibut perk up a bit where we’re at $6.25, $6.50, $6.75 here in Homer today,” Bowen said.

Drug Enforcement Administration

Two men who allegedly had 33 pounds of methamphetamine in a backpack after leaving a ferry in Whittier made their initial court appearances Monday in Anchorage.

Whittier Police arrested Eric James Hansen and Marshal Parke on Thursday. Federal authorities say Hansen brought the meth – worth about “$225,000” in wholesale quantities – from Bellingham, Washington to Whittier on the state ferry Kennicott.

The ferry made stops in Southeast Alaska on its way to Whittier, the closest state ferry terminal to Anchorage, about 60 miles away.

Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

The lone candidate running for governor in this year’s Democratic primary stopped in Homer Thursday. Former U.S. Senator and Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich ended the day with a meet and greet at a local bar. Some Homer voters are concerned that Begich and Gov. Bill Walker might split the moderate vote in the general election, paving the way to victory for former Republican state Senator Mike Dunleavy.

Homer Soil & Water Conservation District

This week on the Coffee Table: invasives. KBBI News Director Aaron Bolton is joined by Matt Steffy with the Homer Soil & Water Conservation District, Jen Hester with the Kenai Watershed Forum and Janice Chumley with the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service to talk about all things invasive on the Keani Peninsula and in your own backyard.

Links and resources:

Kenai Peninsula Cooperative Weed Management Area

Courtesy of Alaska Department of Fish and Game

The state Department of Transportation says an Anchor Point bridge is at risk of becoming compromised. The bridge on the Old Sterling Highway crosses the Anchor River.

DOT became aware of the issue in 2017, but after an inspection earlier this month, spokesperson Shannon McCarthy said the bridge’s condition deteriorated faster than expected.

“The material from the abutment, which is where the road meets the bridge, is starting to flow under the bridge – really problematic, essentially creating a sinkhole,” she said.