Court Says 2008 Sitka Citizen’s Initiative Was Legal

The Alaska Supreme Court ruled Friday that a controversial 2008 citizen’s initiative in Sitka was legal and should have gone before voters. The decision reverses a lower court ruling.

The proposed initiative was seen by many as a way to control further development at Sitka’s former pulp mill site – including a possible cruise ship dock. But the litigation doesn’t mention ships at all. The underlying issues may be much larger.

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Robert Woolsey is a reporter at KCAW in Sitka.