Petersburg may consider letting ATVs on Mitkof Island roads

  • Thursday, March 16, 2017 9:09pm
  • News

PETERSBURG (AP) — Voters in southern Alaska may find a question about whether to allow all-terrain vehicles on the roads of Mitkof island on this year’s ballot.

Local four-wheeler owner Richard Burke plans to collect signatures this spring for a vote to allow ATVs and snow machines on local streets, KFSK-FM reported Wednesday.

Burke said allowing four wheelers and side-by-sides — two- to six-person off-road vehicles — on Petersburg roads gives people an affordable transportation option. He also said that for residents who already own off-road vehicles, there aren’t many options.

“You spend $7,000 or more on a four wheeler and all you can do is illegally plow snow with it,” Burke said. “I’d like to be able to ride to the post office occasionally or to the grocery store. I’m a single guy. Most of the stuff I buy I can fit on my four wheeler.”

Petersburg currently does not allow ATVs, side-by-sides or snow machines on any streets. Police chief Kelly Swihart said his department doesn’t strongly enforce those rules, particularly in winter.

“It’s Southeast Alaska, we get a lot of snow at times and we don’t wanna hinder that. So as long as people are being responsible while they’re plowing, they’re not going to have a problem with us,” he said.

Swihart said he wants to remain neutral on the possible ballot question. Burke has drafted an ordinance based on municipal code from Thorne Bay on Prince of Wales Island. He plans to submit the ordinance to the borough for certification soon.

After the ordinance is certified, Burke will be able to start collecting signatures to get the issue on the regular election ballot in October.

More in News

Renewable IPP CEO Jenn Miller presents information about solar power during a meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly on Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Company looks to build solar farm on peninsula

It would be roughly 20 times the size of the largest solar farm currently in the state.

(Image courtesy CDC)
Officials: COVID is at a plateau in Alaska

The approved COVID vaccines, Zink said, are the best tool to get cases to drop off.

Clem Tillion of Halibut Cove poses for a photo on Jan. 9, 2020, in Homer, Alaska. The veteran Alaska legislator was passing through Homer while waiting to take the M/V Tustumena ferry to Kodiak. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)
Clem Tillion, PFD founder and former legislator, dies at 96

Tillion died Wedneday, Oct. 13, at Halibut Cove home.

“Soctober” will take place from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16, 2021, at the Cook Inlet Counseling parking lot at 10200 Kenai Spur Highway in Kenai, and consists of rock painting, the winter gear giveaway and a free spaghetti lunch. (Image via Cook Inlet Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse)
Recovery group to host outreach event

The event will include rock painting, the winter gear giveaway and a free spaghetti lunch.

Finn Petersen, left, is announced the winner of a $49,000 Alaska 529 scholarship on Thursday, Oct. 14, 2021, as part of the “Give AK a Shot” COVID-19 vaccine program. (Photo via the Alaska Chamber of Commerce)
Anchorage residents win latest vaccine lottery

“Give AK a Shot” awards $49,000 in cash scholarships to one newly vaccinated adult and one child.

Jason Floyd testifies in opposition to COVID-19 mandates during a meeting of the Soldotna City Council on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Protesters pack council meeting, declare ‘medical liberty’

Attendance at Wednesday’s meeting was reduced to standing-room only.

Baked goods are on display during a Soldotna Chamber of Commerce pie auction in this undated photo. (Photo courtesy Soldotna Chamber of Commerce)
‘Local gourmets’ to share baking skills at Soldotna Pie Auction

The Great British Baking Show-esque event showcases local culinary talent.

A spruce bark beetle is seen on the underside of a piece of bark taken from logs stacked near Central Peninsula Landfill on Thursday, July 1, 2021 near Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Chugach campgrounds to be closed for beetle kill mitigation

Only one campground will be closed at a time, and updates on closures will be shared to the Chugach National Forest’s website.

Most Read