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 unofficial results are out for the recall election of three Homer City Council members, but it’s too close to call until the vote is certified Friday. The roughly 1,070 voters who showed up at the polls Tuesday voted in favor of keeping council members Donna Aderhold, Catriona Reynolds and David Lewis on the panel.

About 740 in-person absentee ballots were cast and another 80 were mailed out to absent voters.

Homer residents were nearly split on whether to recall Reynolds, who waited in the lobby of City Hall for the results.

Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

Homer residents are deciding the fate of three city council members today. Absentee voting was high and there were long lines at the polls this morning. Supporters on both sides of the fence also gathered along Pioneer Avenue, waving signs and soliciting honks from passing traffic.

Homer residents are voting on whether to recall city council members Donna Aderhold, Catriona Reynolds and David Lewis.

Courtesy of the Homer Police Department

Frustration over the slow progress towards a new police station was evident at Monday’s Homer City Council Meeting. Council members fretted over how the city would pay for either a $6 million or $9 million option.

Last month, a task force recommended building the station just north of the post office rather than expanding the current Public Safety or the HERC buildings. There are currently no designs for the new facility.

In order to offset the price tag, the council approved dissolving Homer’s roughly $2.3 million permanent fund to pay for planning and construction.

City of Homer

The Homer City Council held what could be three of its members’ last meeting Monday. Donna Aderhold, Catriona Reynolds and David Lewis are all subject of a recall election, closing Tuesday.

Nothing very contentious was on the agenda, but the council chambers were full, some wearing pro-recall shirts.

Mayor Brian Zak read a statement several times throughout the meeting, reiterating the council would not comment on the recent court case or the recall election.

Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

Contentious small town politics took on a festive vibe over the weekend. Political action committees on both sides of the Homer City Council recall issue held rallies with live music and likeminded people. Both groups aimed to energize voters before they head to the ballot box Tuesday, deciding the fate of the three liberal members of Homer’s local government.

Aaron Bolton, KBBI News

Floatplanes and other aircraft are taking off from Beluga Lake and Homer’s airport several times a day. With more than a handful of flightseeing, bear viewing and air taxi operations in town, some residents are concerned about low flying aircraft and the noise that accompanies them.

Homer City Council member Donna Aderhold started hearing complaints last year during a meeting about a floatplane access road. She started working with City Manager Katie Koester to see what the city could do to mitigate the issue. She added residents also suggested their own measures.

Courtesy of the Kenai Peninsula Borough

The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly voted down revenue measures after approving an $83 million budget Tuesday, leaving a projected $4.1 million deficit. Moves to increase property taxes and the number of months groceries are taxed both failed. But, more revenue measures could be coming down the line.

As the assembly pored over Borough Mayor Mike Navarre’s budget proposal Tuesday, there were fundamental differences on where the borough’s money should be spent, namely whether economic development spending actually benefits the borough.

Photo courtesy of Kenai Peninsula Borough School District

Teachers and schools across the Kenai Peninsula received good news Tuesday evening. The Kenai Peninsula Borough approved Borough Mayor Mike Navarre’s budget proposal, appropriating $1.2 million more than the school district had requested.

Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Spokeswoman Pegge Erkeneff said several open teaching jobs are now being filled as a result.

Kachemak Bay Writers' Conference

The Kachemak Bay Writers' Conference is headed into its sixteenth year this weekend. The gathering of writers and readers from around the state and country is aimed at creating community within a solitary art form.

Writers and literary fans can participate in five days of workshops, panels and public readings. Conference organizer and Kachemak Bay Campus Director Carol Swartz said the conference continues to garner its reputation.

Photo from KBBI

The F/V Tustumena’s return to service has once again been delayed. The Alaska Marine Highway announced Monday more of the vessel’s steel structure would need to be replaced.

The Tustumena has been in Ketchikan for scheduled maintenance since March, and its return to Western Alaska was set for May 27. Staff found the first batch of damaged steel in early May, cutting the vessel’s scheduled sailings in half.