Mark Sabbatini

The Juneau Assembly on Monday unanimously approved spending $300,000 for the first phase of the city’s first off-road vehicle park, which will be located beyond the 35-mile marker on Glacier Highway. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire File)

Assembly approves $300,000 for first phase of Juneau’s first ORV park

Five miles of trails planned at 175-acre site near 35 Mile Glacier Highway.

The Juneau Assembly on Monday unanimously approved spending $300,000 for the first phase of the city’s first off-road vehicle park, which will be located beyond the 35-mile marker on Glacier Highway. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire File)
Caution tape and warning signs at the former Glory Hall shelter on South Franklin Street on Monday alert passerbys to construction that begin earlier this month, with seven housing units and additional commercial space scheduled for completion by next summer. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)

Construction starts on conversion of former downtown Glory Hall shelter to affordable homes

Two-year permitting and legal battle raises cost 20% for seven housing units, plus commercial space.

Caution tape and warning signs at the former Glory Hall shelter on South Franklin Street on Monday alert passerbys to construction that begin earlier this month, with seven housing units and additional commercial space scheduled for completion by next summer. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
The frame of a house waits further construction in Yakutat with the assistance of the Tlingit Haida Regional Housing Authority. On Monday the housing authority received a $2 million grant intended to help more than 100 families in Southeast Alaska with loans and other housing assistance. (Photo courtesy of the Tlingit Haida Regional Housing Authority)

$2M grant for Tlingit Haida Regional Housing Authority seeks to help more than 100 Southeast families

Agency among six nationwide winners for programs “making homes more accessible and affordable.”

The frame of a house waits further construction in Yakutat with the assistance of the Tlingit Haida Regional Housing Authority. On Monday the housing authority received a $2 million grant intended to help more than 100 families in Southeast Alaska with loans and other housing assistance. (Photo courtesy of the Tlingit Haida Regional Housing Authority)
Participants in the Juneau Alaska Music Matters program perform on Alaska Native drums at Sitʼ Eeti Shaanáx̱ Glacier Valley Elementary School. (Photo courtesy of Juneau Alaska Music Matters)

JAMM among 11 finalists for four $500,000 national Accelerator Awards

Winners of fifth annual awards for youth music programs scheduled to be announced in January.

Participants in the Juneau Alaska Music Matters program perform on Alaska Native drums at Sitʼ Eeti Shaanáx̱ Glacier Valley Elementary School. (Photo courtesy of Juneau Alaska Music Matters)
John Phillips (left) and Roger Sheakley salute the colors during the opening of the Southeast Alaska Native Veterans’ observance of Veterans Day on Saturday at Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)

Trio of observances for Juneau’s veterans share tributes in distinctly different ways

Annual events honor those serving during wars, seeking peace and preserving Alaska Native heritage.

John Phillips (left) and Roger Sheakley salute the colors during the opening of the Southeast Alaska Native Veterans’ observance of Veterans Day on Saturday at Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
A tourist departs a cruise ship in the documentary “Cruise Boom,” which was screened Friday as part of an Evening at Egan presentation at the University of Alaska Southeast. The film is also scheduled to be shown Saturday at the Gold Town Theater. (Courtesy of Artchange Inc.)
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Presentation pitching partnerships to address cruise ship impacts proves provocative

“I do not trust these corporations one iota,” says one attendee; others see signs of hope.

A tourist departs a cruise ship in the documentary “Cruise Boom,” which was screened Friday as part of an Evening at Egan presentation at the University of Alaska Southeast. The film is also scheduled to be shown Saturday at the Gold Town Theater. (Courtesy of Artchange Inc.)
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Thunder Mountain High School’s Ashlyn Gates, seen hitting the ball past Ketchikan High School defenders during the Region V Volleyball Tournament last Saturday, was named the outstanding player for the Falcons during their elimination game against Dimond High School in the statewide 4A Volleyball Championship on Friday in Anchorage. Thunder Mountain lost the match in four sets. (Christopher Mullen / Ketchikan Daily News File)

Thunder Mountain’s volleyball season ends with loss to defending state champs

Strong rallies by Falcons keep match close before decisive fourth set.

Thunder Mountain High School’s Ashlyn Gates, seen hitting the ball past Ketchikan High School defenders during the Region V Volleyball Tournament last Saturday, was named the outstanding player for the Falcons during their elimination game against Dimond High School in the statewide 4A Volleyball Championship on Friday in Anchorage. Thunder Mountain lost the match in four sets. (Christopher Mullen / Ketchikan Daily News File)
A map shows areas of downtown Juneau considered at severe (red) and moderate (blue) risk of avalanches. The Juneau Assembly is scheduled on Monday to give initial consideration to an ordinance regulating development in such areas. (City and Borough of Juneau)

Assembly to consider new hazard zone proposal to regulate avalanche areas, notify landslide risks

Warming shelter, off-road vehicle park, Suicide Basin monitoring also on agenda for Monday’s meeting.

A map shows areas of downtown Juneau considered at severe (red) and moderate (blue) risk of avalanches. The Juneau Assembly is scheduled on Monday to give initial consideration to an ordinance regulating development in such areas. (City and Borough of Juneau)
The Thunder Mountain High School volleyball team, seen here in the official program for the 2023 Alaska School Activities Association’s 4A Volleyball Championship, lost their opening game of the double-elimination tournament to South Anchorage High School on Thursday. (Photo courtesy of ASAA)

TMHS loses opening game at state finals, plays elimination game Friday morning

Eighth-ranked Falcons will face either top-ranked Wasilla or second-ranked Dimond.

The Thunder Mountain High School volleyball team, seen here in the official program for the 2023 Alaska School Activities Association’s 4A Volleyball Championship, lost their opening game of the double-elimination tournament to South Anchorage High School on Thursday. (Photo courtesy of ASAA)
Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire
Denise Koch, director of engineering and public works for the City and Borough of Juneau, explains efforts being made to secure various types of flood mitigation funding while City Manager Katie Koester listens during a Juneau Assembly Committee of the Whole meeting Monday night in the Assembly Chambers.

City still seeking millions in federal flood funding, despite FEMA disaster aid rejection

NOAA, Army Corps of Engineers, others being asked to help with future prevention efforts.

Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire
Denise Koch, director of engineering and public works for the City and Borough of Juneau, explains efforts being made to secure various types of flood mitigation funding while City Manager Katie Koester listens during a Juneau Assembly Committee of the Whole meeting Monday night in the Assembly Chambers.
The front page of the Juneau Empire on Nov. 6, 2005. (Photo by Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
The front page of the Juneau Empire on Nov. 6, 2005. (Photo by Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Sealaska Corp. CEO Anthony Mallott is departing effective Jan. 1, according to a company announcement Wednesday. (Photo courtesy of Sealaska Corp.)

Sealaska Corp. CEO Anthony Mallott stepping down effective Jan. 1

Announcement comes days after Alaska Native corporation announces lower shareholder dividends.

Sealaska Corp. CEO Anthony Mallott is departing effective Jan. 1, according to a company announcement Wednesday. (Photo courtesy of Sealaska Corp.)
A screenshot from “Juneau Thug Life” by Last Frontier Aerial LLC, which is among the films scheduled to be screened during the Juneau Underground Motion Picture Society’s Winter Film Festival at the Gold Town Theater starting Thursday. (Courtesy of the Juneau Underground Motion Picture Society)

Locals again get their moment on the quicksilver screen

“A real cross-section of the community” shown in 10 minutes or less at JUMP Society’s Film Festival.

A screenshot from “Juneau Thug Life” by Last Frontier Aerial LLC, which is among the films scheduled to be screened during the Juneau Underground Motion Picture Society’s Winter Film Festival at the Gold Town Theater starting Thursday. (Courtesy of the Juneau Underground Motion Picture Society)
Hundreds of people visit Sealaska’s Heritage Square in downtown Juneau for an April 22 ceremony celebrating the raising of 12 totem poles along Juneau’s waterfront. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire File)

Sealaska issues lower annual dividend for first time in many years, displeasing shareholders

Complaints voiced about corporation’s leadership, especially as Goldbelt dividends again rise.

Hundreds of people visit Sealaska’s Heritage Square in downtown Juneau for an April 22 ceremony celebrating the raising of 12 totem poles along Juneau’s waterfront. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire File)
Juneau Assembly members cast an informal vote during a Committee of the Whole meeting Monday night about the volume of cruise tourism they want to see in Juneau in future years. Mayor Beth Weldon (left) and Assembly member Greg Smith (middle) cast neutral votes essentially favoring an as-is approach, while Michelle Bonnet Hale, Paul Kelly and Ella Adkison suggesting they prefer lower numbers than the record 1.66 million passengers that visited this year. Votes by the other four members included one as-is and three “thumbs down,” for a 6-3 vote in favor of the city’s tourism director exploring a strategy for 2026 and beyond that results in fewer annual cruise visitors. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
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Most Assembly members express preference for fewer cruise visitors after record season

In 6-3 informal vote, members ask tourism director for reduction strategy for 2026 and beyond.

Juneau Assembly members cast an informal vote during a Committee of the Whole meeting Monday night about the volume of cruise tourism they want to see in Juneau in future years. Mayor Beth Weldon (left) and Assembly member Greg Smith (middle) cast neutral votes essentially favoring an as-is approach, while Michelle Bonnet Hale, Paul Kelly and Ella Adkison suggesting they prefer lower numbers than the record 1.66 million passengers that visited this year. Votes by the other four members included one as-is and three “thumbs down,” for a 6-3 vote in favor of the city’s tourism director exploring a strategy for 2026 and beyond that results in fewer annual cruise visitors. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
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Thunder Mountain High School players celebrate after scoring a point during their 3-1 victory over Ketchikan High School to win the Region V Volleyball Tournament in Ketchikan on Saturday. (Christopher Mullen / Ketchikan Daily News)

TMHS completes threepeat as regional volleyball champs

Falcons begin quest for state title Thursday; JDHS plays Ketchikan tough in elimination game.

Thunder Mountain High School players celebrate after scoring a point during their 3-1 victory over Ketchikan High School to win the Region V Volleyball Tournament in Ketchikan on Saturday. (Christopher Mullen / Ketchikan Daily News)
Rock fill safeguards homes along the Mendenhall River on Sept. 3, a month after record flooding from Suicide Basin caused extensive damage. Concern has been expressed by some residents who paying for the fill to protect their homes that others who opt not to do so will increase the risk of another flood causing further erosion. One property owner who has not done so said it makes no sense for him to spent that money since his home was destroyed, and isn’t getting sufficient assistance or insurance to replace it. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)

City meeting to update Mendenhall River flooding issues and answer public questions set for Monday

In-person, remote and written testimony being accepted by Assembly’s Committee of the Whole.

Rock fill safeguards homes along the Mendenhall River on Sept. 3, a month after record flooding from Suicide Basin caused extensive damage. Concern has been expressed by some residents who paying for the fill to protect their homes that others who opt not to do so will increase the risk of another flood causing further erosion. One property owner who has not done so said it makes no sense for him to spent that money since his home was destroyed, and isn’t getting sufficient assistance or insurance to replace it. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
The living room of Marty and Marjorie McKeown’s house remains exposed a month after record flooding of the Mendenhall River eroded the couple’s backyard and portions of the earth under their home. In the backdrop next door are the remains of a home that mostly collapsed into the river during the flood and a condominium that is being propped up with posts and rock fill in an attempt to make it safe to occupy again. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)

Between rocks and a hard place for flood victims trying to save homes

Many residents paying to install rock fill along riverbank, but cost just one of many concerns.

The living room of Marty and Marjorie McKeown’s house remains exposed a month after record flooding of the Mendenhall River eroded the couple’s backyard and portions of the earth under their home. In the backdrop next door are the remains of a home that mostly collapsed into the river during the flood and a condominium that is being propped up with posts and rock fill in an attempt to make it safe to occupy again. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire)
Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File
Kyle Farley-Robinson, left, Jon Hays, center, and Dr. Alexander Tutunov play “Romance And Waltz For Six Hands Piano” by Sergei Rachmaninoff during the Juneau Piano Series featuring Dr. Tutunov at the Juneau Arts and Culture Center on Friday, Jan. 18, 2019.

Making a Liszt, playing it twice as opener for JAHC piano concert series

Works by Hungarian composer featured in solo performance by series’ artistic director.

Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File
Kyle Farley-Robinson, left, Jon Hays, center, and Dr. Alexander Tutunov play “Romance And Waltz For Six Hands Piano” by Sergei Rachmaninoff during the Juneau Piano Series featuring Dr. Tutunov at the Juneau Arts and Culture Center on Friday, Jan. 18, 2019.
A blueprint shows the planned second phase of a commercial and resident development project in downtown Juneau, which is currently used by seasonal food trucks and where the historic Elks Lodge was located. (Illustration by Northwind Architects submitted to the City and Borough of Juneau)

What’s next for old Elks Lodge site? Owner proposes ‘South Franklin Food Court and Housing’

Indoor/outdoor pavilion, food trucks, restaurant and up to 100 housing units in plan.

A blueprint shows the planned second phase of a commercial and resident development project in downtown Juneau, which is currently used by seasonal food trucks and where the historic Elks Lodge was located. (Illustration by Northwind Architects submitted to the City and Borough of Juneau)