Sen. Stevens cautions Alaska against panic

Sen. Gary Stevens makes a Homer stop Wednesday through Friday to talk with constituents in what’s proving a most contentious battle year for passing a 2016 budget. It’s a job he said the Senate completed, along with $750-800 million in cuts that will not involve mass layoffs.
Now the budget is in the hands of the Alaska House. Budget disagreements will be solved before the July 1 fiscal budget year begins, he predicts, and it will not involve a government shutdown.

Relay for Life celebrates 30 years of raising funds, awareness

Heroes come in all variety at this year’s Homer Relay for Life, a cancer-fundraising event launched 30 years ago by a Tacoma doctor.
Dr. Gordy Klatt began a long walk on his own one day in May of 1985, a 24-hour trek at the University of Puget Sound stadium, to raise both money and awareness about the need for cancer research funds.
“The doctor came up with an idea for how to raise money for some way to cure cancer, to fund research in general,” said this year’s Homer Relay Co-Chair Michelle Geagel. “He got donations from family and friends and walked a track by himself. He walked 83 miles.”

Summer at Homer Public Library offers variety of fun

This week, the Homer Public Library Kicked off Summer@HPL; a jam-packed schedule of activities and learning opportunities that bear little resemblance to summer reading programs of old. Youth Services Librarian, Claudia Haines explained that summer reading programs help kids to avoid the “summer slide” – the tendency of students to lose academic ground over the summer months when they are not in the books.
“We offer summer programs for kids, teens and adults and they all look a little bit different,” said Haines. “Research shows that kids are more likely to read if their adults are reading.”
And picking up a book is not without incentive. Every hour that a kid under the age of eleven reads and documents the time, they will receive a prize for up to 10 hours logged.
And that’s not to mention the super-reader prize; a drawing for students who read more than 45 hours during the ten-week period.

Marijuana vs. cannabis – what’s in a name?

As local governance of marijuana begins to take shape statewide, so has the local regulatory Cannabis Advisory Commission representing the city of Homer.
The group held its first meeting May 28 and discussed ideas and concerns regarding the up-and-coming industry and potential impacts that could be seen in Homer. During the meeting, the group also designated a chairwoman and vice chairman. Uncontested, agricultural gurus, Aryn Young and Shane Monroe were named for the two positions, respectively.
The commission currently comprises nine members; eight of which were present, commission member David Etzwiler was unable to attend.

Punctured tank on ‘Thor’s Hammer’ spills 6,000 gallons of diesel

A 116-foot landing craft that suffered turbulent seas and a punctured fuel tank last week made a stop in the Homer harbor to offload cargo and undergo a safety examination, according to the U.S. Coast Guard.
The vessel — Thor’s Hammer — was met with inclement weather on the morning of May 23. High seas punctured a 9,000-gallon fuel tank during transit from Seward to Bristol Bay.
Petty Officer 3rd Class, Meredith Manning, said the crew aboard Thor’s Hammer encountered six to eight foot seas and winds of 40 miles per hour as they traveled south of Port Graham in Cook Inlet.

Bear sighted killing moose calves, trail closed

The Kachemak Heritage Land Trust closed the Calvin and Coyle Woodland Park on May 23 after an individual making their way down the trail came upon a bear killing two moose calves.
Calvin and Coyle Woodland Park is located inside city limits on Mariner Drive, approximately one mile from downtown Homer. The 1.5-mile loop in the park is a hotspot for birders, runners and those who like an easy hike just a short drive away.
According to KHLT Executive Director Marie McCarty, sitting adjacent to the Beluga Wetlands, the park is “prime wildlife habitat” that includes moose and bears.
McCarty said KHLT decided to cl

Green found guilty of second-degree murder

Following weeks of jury selection, witness testimony and evidence examination, a jury spent nearly three days deliberating the verdict in the case of 23-year-old Demarqus Green; ultimately finding him guilty of murder in the second degree and tampering with physical evidence.

Locals raise concern over float debris

Chunks of float debris made of a material known as Expanded Polystyrene, commonly called styrofoam, found floating in the water and on the coastline of Kachemak Bay have recently drawn concern from community members looking for answers. Chief among those questions, though, is where is the debris coming from.
Providing a piece of the puzzle, Homer City Manager Katie Koester offered information on the issue this week in the city managers report prepared for the May 26 city council meeting.

Grand Jury indicts man in Christmas Day accident

Five months after an accident that rocked the community, a grand jury for the Kenai Superior Court indicted 29-year-old Larry E. Pyatt Jr., of Anchor Point, on charges stemming from an accident that happened on Christmas Day injuring then 11-year-old Angelica Haakenson and her mother, Mathany Satterwhite, 29; both of Anchor Point.

Truck hits house in fatal accident

Alaska State Troopers reported a fatality this week after a 76-year-old man collided into a residence with his vehicle.
Troopers reported the accident took place near Milepost 151 of the Sterling Highway, and was reported at 10:30 a.m. on May 17. Authorities are uncertain of the exact time the incident took place. One driver reported to troopers that they noted nothing amiss during a drive by the area around 9:30 a.m. That led troopers to believe the accident occurred sometime between 9:30-10:30 a.m.

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