SPLASH – An SUV makes a tremendous splash as it drives through a puddle on Lake Street Sunday morning.  A storm front Sunday and Monday morning brought with it torrential rain, thunder,  lightning and a power outage, but no major damage. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

2 Oil Firms Try Again To Hide Deal’s Finances

ANCHORAGE (AP) — Two oil companies renewed a request for Alaska regulators to protect the financial information of Hilcorp Energy Co., in its proposed $5.6 billion purchase of BP Alaska assets in the state. 

Hilcorp wants the Regulatory Commission of Alaska to shield its finances from public scrutiny during the proposed purchase, the Anchorage Daily News reported  Tuesday.

The oil companies blacked out document sections related to Hilcorp’s financial fitness and access to capital in a filing with the regulatory agency Monday.

“Petitioners seek to protect and keep confidential” answers to questions about Hilcorp’s financial reserves and its ability to acquire capital, the companies wrote in a request for confidentiality.

The companies provided information related to crude oil spills since 2003, but sought to keep a wide array of other information from public view, including pipeline repairs and operational risk assessments related to the trans-Alaska pipeline.

After oil prices plunged, the commission requested additional details in April. The regulators asked whether the industry turmoil impaired Hilcorp’s ability to borrow money to finance the purchase.

The companies, which hope to complete the sale by June following regulatory approval, argue that disclosure could put Hilcorp at a competitive disadvantage.

BP in August announced plans to sell to Hilcorp operations in Alaska, including interests in Prudhoe Bay, the Point Thomson gas field and the trans-Alaska pipeline system. BP recently announced altered terms, including the allowance of slower payments, while the sale price has not changed since the proposed sale was announced.

The agency will make a future determination on the request for confidentiality, commission spokeswoman Grace Salazar said.

The Alaska Public Interest Research Group has pressed for disclosure of Hilcorp’s finances out of concern the private company may be too small to handle unexpected costs, such as a major oil spill.

“This doesn’t allow the public to engage on this in a substantive way,” said Phil Wight, who studied the deal for the consumer rights group.

 

 

August 5, 2020

A Note To Our Readers

Reopening: Phase One:

 

On March 30 the Daily Sitka Sentinel began taking precautions against the coronavirus, which was starting to show up in Alaska.

We closed our building to the public and four key employees started working remotely. Home delivery was suspended to protect our carriers from exposure to the virus.

Four months later, the virus is still with us and the precautions remain in effect.

In appreciation for the willingness of our subscribers to pick up their daily paper at drop-off sites, the Sentinel was free to all readers, and subscriptions were extended without charge.

As of August 1 the Sentinel is once again charging for subscriptions, but the present method of having subscribers pick up their papers at designated sites will continue.

The expiration date of all subscriptions has been extended without charge for an additional four months.

We thank our readers for their support in these uncertain times, and especially those who paid for the paper despite the free offer.

We look forward to the time when we can safely resume home delivery.

To check on the expiration of your subscription or to make a payment please call 747-3219. The subscription email address is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . We also will be mailing out reminder cards.

The single copy price is again 75 cents. The news racks do not require coins to open, but we ask that the 75 cents for a non-subscription single copy sale be paid with coins in the slot.

– The Sitka Sentinel Staff

 

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Alaska COVID-19
At a Glance

(updated 9-28-20)

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 11:50 a.m. Monday.

New cases as of Sunday: 115

Total statewide – 7,597

Total (cumulative) deaths – 56

Active cases in Sitka – 20 (11 resident; 9 non-resident) *

Recovered cases in Sitka – 44 (37 resident; 7 non-resident) *

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 286.

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

* These numbers reflect State of Alaska data. Local cases may not immediately appear on DHSS site, or are reported on patient’s town of residence rather than Sitka’s statistics. 

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20 YEARS AGO
September 2000

Sitka Open Golf Tournament winners are: Men’s Division – Semisi Funaki, Tom Mattingly and Gregory Martin. Women’s Division – Janet Schwartz, Judy Sudnikovich and Liza Martin. Youth Division – Elaina Mattingly, Matthew Way and Sidney Wyman.

50 YEARS AGO
September 1970

Lions Catch a Bear at Kake. They were on Lions Club business, but Willie Dick and Bill Pasek, Sitka, brought back a bear from Kake. Pasek shot the 6-foot-tall black bear after Lions Club business was ended. He and Dick brought the bear back to Sitka where Larry Ross and Dick Wight helped prepare it for a taxidermist.

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