City of Unalaska

Hope McKenney/KUCB

The Unalaska City Council appointed Thomas D. Bell to an empty council seat at a special meeting Thursday night.

Jim Fitch resigned from the council in November, about two years into his three-year term, leaving a vacancy.

After accepting Fitch's resignation, the City Council announced it would accept applications for his vacant seat through early January.

Hope McKenney/KUCB

GCI has applied to bring broadband communications to communities along the Aleutian chain.

The proposed project would bring fiber optic cable from Kodiak to Unalaska, spanning approximately 860 miles.

Dan Boyette, Vice President of GCI, said getting the financing arranged and support from the business community for this project has proved to be a challenge. 

Zoe Sobel/KUCB

For the fifth time in five years, Unalaska is looking to hire a new fire chief.

Ramona Thompson was fired in early October after about a year and a half leading the Department of Fire and Emergency Medical Services.

Due to the fatal plane crash that month and Thompson's travel schedule, KUCB couldn't reach her for an interview until this week.

"Our current city manager pretty much said that she had determined that it was in the best interest of the community and the organization to terminate me without cause, and that's why I'm not working there anymore," she said.

Laura Kraegel/KUCB

Former mayor Frank Kelty has retired after almost 40 years as a local official.

Before he moved to southern California last month, Kelty sat down with KUCB's Laura Kraegel to reflect on his long career. It began in the late 1960s when he moved from Washington to Alaska to find seasonal work as a seafood processor.

At first, Kelty said he just needed enough money to settle a $7,000 debt from a car accident. But he said he quickly fell in love with Unalaska and made it his home.

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Hope McKenney/KUCB

Engineers have taken down one of Unalaska's four meteorological (MET) towers after it was damaged in a fall storm. Its loss isn't expected to compromise the city's ongoing energy study testing the feasibility of a local wind farm.

On Hog Island, workers have been preparing a MET tower for winter, anchoring it deeper into the ground. That way, when high winds blow and heavy rain falls, it'll stand up to the elements and avoid damage.

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