Month: November 2013

Ulti-MUTT Dog Show at KPC

Tyann Reed and Courtney Parker shelter their dogs Bo and Basil Lynn from the chilly temperatures outside KPC Friday.

Fridays power outage didn’t do anything to deter a handful of dog lovers at Kenai Peninsula College, who were there for the Student Union’s first dog show.



Student Union president Teresa Cross was grilling hot dogs while dog owners milled about outside the Brockel Building on the KPC campus.

“We have the Ulti-mutt Dog Show. Any breed, any style, short, fat, skinny, we don’t care. He’s a mutt, he can come participate.”

Staff and faculty at the college served as judges, contemplating cuteness and costumes.

 A KPC students Tyann Reed and Courtney Parker had their eyes on the cuteness award, while they had their dogs, Bo and Basil Lynn, tucked into their coats.

“Basil is full of love and personality. She’s just my baby,” Parker said.

Debbie McCree and her five year old shi tzu are going after the best costume award, with Minnie dressed up like a reindeer, antlers and all.

“I thought she’d just take every prize there is,” McCree said with a laugh.


The Legend Of Soapy Smith

Alaska’s history is peppered with crooks, cons and other characters famous for running afoul of the law. One of them is Soapy Smith, whose travels brought him briefly to the Kenai Peninsula. Historian Jane Haigh has written about Smith, and on Thursday night, told his story at the Kasilof Regional Historical Association Museum.

Read more

Local Veterans Remember

Members of VFW Post #10046, American Legion Post #20 and AMVETS Post #4 perform a rifle salute outside the Soldotna Regional Sports Center Monday morning.




-Shaylon Cochran/KDLL-

School District Seeks Community Input For Budget

The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is starting its budget process for next school year. District officials are looking for community members to lend a hand in deciding how the money will be used.



School officials are looking for 10 to 15 people to be part of the KPBSD Budget Review Committee.

“It gathers once a year and it will meet all day long,” KPBSD Spokesperson Pegge Erkeneff said. “The purpose is to take a look at what our budget is for the upcoming year, for the 2014-2015 school year. And as it goes through the process there will be a presentation of where the district is at… and then we’re inviting feedback.”

Erkeneff said much of the conversation will focus on the general fund budget, which is by far the largest pot of money. That’s the portion that pays teacher salaries and benefits. It’s also the portion of the budget that needs to be reduced by $1.24 million for next school year. Erkeneff said the district is hoping to streamline costs without sacrificing what happens in the classroom.

“So here’s our current reality and what suggestions and ideas do you have? We’ll be asking that to the people who are on this budget review committee,” she said.

She also points out this review committee will be a way for the district to educate people about how education funding works.

“Public education funding is interesting for people to really learn. We have no way to generate our own money for the school district. So we rely on our state funding and the borough funding and some federal funding. So they’ll get an informative understanding of how a school district budget works… you’re learning where funding comes from, you’re learning what we’ve done in the past, we’re learning trends that are coming in the future,” she said.

But don’t worry; Erkeneff said a degree in finance isn’t mandatory.

“It’s somebody with a mind that’s open to inquiry and to learning, and that’s open to

The 10 to 15 people from the community won’t be the only ones in the room for this discussion. Erkneff said district officials, school board members, some Borough Assembly members as well as student and union representatives will be on hand to hammer out budget priorities.

The school district might also have a better idea of the number of students in each of the schools by that point. The district just finished its 20-day count for the State Department of Education and Early Development.

“The preliminary information that we got… from our 20-day count… it’s looking like we’re slightly under,” she said.

Erkeneff said that report isn’t concrete yet. But if the numbers stay slightly down that will affect state funding for the district.

If you’d like to apply for this committee, the short application is available on the KPBSD website. All you need is your name, address, phone number and email. The submission deadline is 4 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 8. The committee will meet the following Tuesday from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. in the Borough Assembly Chambers.

-Ariel Van Cleave/KBBI-