Emily Files, KHNS - Haines

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Emily Files is a reporter at KHNS in Haines.

State Troopers plan to move lone Haines position to Bethel

Things are not looking good for Haines’ Alaska State Trooper post. AST Director Col. James Cockrell intends to reassign Haines’ one trooper position to Bethel. The decision isn’t final yet, but the community conversation about how to handle the loss continued at a Public Safety Commission meeting this week. Listen now

State to hold meetings on evaluation process for controversial water protections

Four Alaska communities from Haines to Bristol Bay have applied for high-level water body protections. The Outstanding National Resource Water, also known as Tier 3, nominations have been in limbo for a few years. That’s because the state is still figuring out what evaluation process to use. A series of public meetings in March aim to gather input on that question. Listen now
people stand on the dock of a large boat as it approaches a glacier

After uncertainty, Alaska national parks get green light to hire summer staff

Alaska National Parks can hire the hundreds of seasonal employees they need to keep up with summer operations. Seasonal staffing was thrown into limbo when President Donald Trump ordered a federal hiring freeze in January. After about a month of questions and waiting, Alaska national parks can now get to business hiring summer staff. Listen now

Trump’s federal hiring freeze leaves Alaska national parks in limbo

The Trump administration’s federal hiring freeze is creating uncertainty for Alaska’s national parks. A Jan. 31 announcement that seasonal employees may be exempt from the order eased some of the stress on national parks. But there are still questions about the future, including for Alaska’s most-visited national park. Listen now

With fireweed cosmos and spruce tip gin, Skagway distillery set to open in May

A family of self-described “serial entrepreneurs” in Skagway think they’ve found their final adventure: a craft distillery.

Jilkaat Kwaan Cultural Heritage Center opens in Klukwan

It was a historic year for the Chilkat Indian Village of Klukwan. After more than a decade of work, the Jilkaat Kwaan Cultural Heritage Center was opened in May. The center tells the still-evolving story of the Chilkat people. It also houses some of the world’s most admired works of Northwest Coast Art, the Whale House Collection. Listen Now

Alaska DOC Commissioner to stop in Haines as part of a 15-town visit

The Alaska Department of Corrections Commissioner will be in Haines next week. Dean Williams is traveling to far-flung corners of the state in preparation for more budget cuts. He is visiting all 15 towns that are part of the DOC Community Jails Program. Listen Now

Former Skagway Assemblyman claims he misunderstood public office disclosure forms

Alaska’s campaign finance watchdog group held a hearing Tuesday morning on a complaint against former Skagway Assemblyman Dan Henry. The complaint against Henry involves incomplete public office financial disclosure forms. During the hearing, Henry said he misunderstood what information is required on those filings.

After Haines and Skagway visit, Walker says he’s close to Juneau Access Road decision

Alaska Gov. Bill Walker visited Haines and Skagway Friday in what he says was a crucial step toward making a decision on the controversial Juneau Access Road. Listen Now

One Skagway Assembly seat may be vacant soon, but won’t be on election ballot

In less than a month, Skagway voters will cast ballots for two open borough assembly seats, but one more seat may be vacant soon. Listen now

Alaska’s most-visited national park puts little-known Buffalo Soldiers story in the spotlight

When you think of Buffalo Soldiers, does Alaska come to mind? Probably not. But the African American units formed in the 19th century before the US military was de-segregated are a part of Alaska’s history – specifically, Skagway’s history – during the days of the Klondike Gold Rush.

For first time in a generation, Skagway School has single-grade classrooms

For more than 20 years, Skagway School was small enough that all students were taught in multi-age classrooms. Listen now

Mineral exploration near Haines given green light to expand

A Canadian company conducting exploration for a potential mine about 35 miles north of Haines was recently granted permission to grow its project. Listen now

Three new teachers on board as Skagway School grows

Skagway School went through a restructuring this year. An influx in students enabled the school to create single-grade classrooms in the elementary school, increase Spanish and music classes, and start an accelerated learning program. It also opened space for three new teachers.
A cruiste ship pulls into a mountain town

Haines Chamber of Commerce grapples with role of nonprofts

Whether nonprofit and for-profit businesses should have an equal voice in the Haines Chamber of Commerce has been debated for a while. Members will vote this week on amended bylaws that would clarify the role of nonprofits — allowing them to be members and vote, but not to serve on the board.

Wildlife biologist describes circumstances of Haines bear attack

Some of the circumstances that led to a brown bear attack near Haines this spring came to light when a wildlife biologist interviewed the victim recently.

Earthquake simulator to bring jolt of awareness to Southeast and Yukon

Alaska is earthquake country. But many people don’t know the basic safety measures they should take to prepare for an earthquake. The Alaska Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management wants to change that. The Division hopes to jolt people into awareness with a mobile earthquake simulator. The ‘Quake Cottage’ is scheduled to visit ten communities in Southeast Alaska and the Yukon for the first time ever this fall. Listen now

Piping problem leads to dry taps, brown water in Haines

The Haines Borough is working to replenish its water supply after storage tanks drained so low Sunday that some neighborhoods were left with dry taps. The water shortage sprung from a problem with the transmission line from the borough’s main water source, Lily Lake.

Chilkoot Tribe celebrates lands into trust ‘victory’

A Haines tribe is calling a recent decision by a U.S. Court of Appeals a ‘historic victory.’ The Chilkoot Indian Association was among five plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging what is known as the ‘Alaska exception’ – which prohibited Alaska tribes from placing their lands into federal trust. After years of litigation, including an appeal from the state, the federal court sided with the tribes. Alaska tribes can now petition for sovereignty over their lands. Listen now
Dead murres on the beach in Haines on Jan. 12, 2016. (Tim Ackerman)

Following seabird die-off, citizen science project expands in Alaska

Earlier this year, dozens of dead seabirds washed up on beaches in Haines and Skagway. It wasn’t an isolated event. An estimated hundreds of thousands of dead common murres were found on shores across the West Coast.