Canadian Company Set to Fill a Gap   Leave a comment

https://www.adn.com/article/20150921/canadian-company-considers-ketchikan-ferry-connection

In case you don’t know it, Alaska is experiencing some financial difficulties. This is partially due to Saudi Arabia pumping oil like mad to corner the international market again. As soon as they get enough market share, expect the price of oil to go up, up, up again. This is also partially due to the Parnell administration’s insane giveaway to the oil companies (good Alaska SB21 for details), followed by a seriously uninformed vote by Alaskans to allow it to go forward. Alaska runs on oil and we are caught in a double whammy right now.

We have savings. We’re running a deficit, but unlike every other state in the union, we have savings accounts to turn an emergency in a soft bounce. But to make it all work, the State of Alaska has to cut costs, so among many other things we’re looking at is a reduction in ferry service in Southeast.

(NOTE – The entire western half of the state has no road system and relies on barges to get their goods to them. Southeast has had a special deal for a long time where they had subsidized ferry service, due in large part because our state capital is located there. They are not being treated unfairly. They are being asked to join the rest of the state in fixing a problem).

So, Prince Rupert won’t be seeing the Alaska Ferry very often in the next year. Once a week, most likely. That impacts their tourism because a lot of people go to Prince Rupert to access the ferry because it is cheaper than Bellingham and a lot of Canadians go to see Alaska via the Prince Rupert ferry station. Yes, the ferry station the Canadians were all up in arms about because US (federal) rules say US transportation projects must use American steel. And, yes, it is possible that fight is in the mix with decisions.

But ….

A private company is considering picking up the slack.

You see, if government gets out of the way, private companies will do it IF it needs to be done.

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