NEW AGAIN – Amy Rowe-Danielson arranges a display at the Sitka Sound Science Center's newly opened Mill Building on Lincoln Street this afternoon. The reconstructed 1940 building houses Ludvig's Chowder Cart, which opened today for the first time this season to a steady line of socially distancing customers. It also houses the center's gift shop which, like many businesses in town, offers online ordering and free local delivery. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Anchorage Mayor Seeks PFD for Communities

    ANCHORAGE (AP) — The mayor of Anchorage has asked state legislators to consider giving part of the Alaska Permanent Fund to cities and boroughs.
    Ethan Berkowitz made a pitch to lawmakers Monday for municipalities to share a portion of the annual cash transfer from the fund to the state treasury.
    Lawmakers approved the transfer in 2018 but did not determine the specific split of the money between government operations and the permanent fund dividend for residents.
    The Legislature is set to consider the issue again after the next session opens Jan. 21.
    The Legislature should consider splitting the transfer three ways, with one of the three shares consisting of a “community dividend,” Berkowitz said.
    The funds would cover some of the state’s responsibilities, he said.
    “A community dividend, in essence, would mean you would divide the dividend payout between state government, the dividend itself and local government,” Berkowitz said.
    A community dividend would allow the state to eliminate school bond debt payments and require local governments to take a greater share of public works, Berkowitz said.
    “We could do things like plow some of the state road and that would do things like reduce costs at the state level, and at the same time give us increased capacity locally,” Berkowitz said.
    Democratic state Rep. Andy Josephson of Anchorage said the measure would be politically difficult to accomplish.
    “There’s just been no momentum behind a community dividend,” he said.
    The state has repeatedly cut financial support for municipalities since 2014 while transferring some obligations to cities and boroughs.
    The Alaska Municipal League, a group that lobbies on behalf of boroughs and cities, has expressed support for the community dividend.   



Alaska COVID-19
At a Glance

(updated 5-29-20)

By Sentinel Staff

The state Department of Health and Social Services has posted the following update on the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Alaska as of 10:20 a.m. Friday.

New cases as of Thursday: 5

Total statewide – 430

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 47, and the cumulative number of deaths is 10.

To visit the Alaska DHSS Corona Response dashboard website click here.



Welcome to the Sitka Sentinel's web page. In order to make the Sentinel's news more easily available during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have taken down the paywall to access articles on this page. Just click on an article headline to read the story. 

March 23, 2020



For the duration of the COVID-19 disaster emergency declared by federal, state and local authorities, the Sentinel is taking additional measures to reduce virus exposure to its employees and contractors as well as to the public, while continuing to publish a daily news report for Sitka.

To the extent possible, Sentinel news and sales staff will be working from home. For the protection of our carriers, home delivery of the newspaper will be stopped effective Tuesday, March 24.

The Sentinel will continue to publish on its website sitkasentinel.com. Access to the website will be free to all users. The Sentinel will also produce a print edition Monday through Friday. It will be available to all readers without charge, at locations throughout town.

Initially, these locations are those where the Sentinel's newspaper vending machines are already in place. The coin mechanisms will be disabled or the doors removed to permit easy access. The Sentinel will work with the stores where the paper is usually sold, to designate a place inside or outside the store where the free edition can be made available.  

Home delivery subscriptions are on hold, and after the end of the disaster emergency, subscriptions will be extended at no charge for the number of days that there was no home delivery.

The Sentinel will make its print edition available to the public as early in the day as possible. with all personnel taking precautions to prevent spread of the virus.

The Sentinel is calling upon its customers to observe the COVID-19 emergency precautions already in place, particularly in maintaining a six-foot social distance from others at newspaper distribution sites.

Following is the statement issued by the Sentinel on March 16, stating the Sentinel's emergency procedures, which remain in effect.

The Sentinel office at 112 Barracks Street is closed to the public. We encourage people to use the phone, email or the U.S. Postal Service as much as possible.There is a slot in the front door of the office for ads, news items and payment checks. Emails may be sent to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and the phone number is (907) 747-3219.                                                                          

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