Chapter 15 SLA 09 allocates a portion of the State of Alaska's CIAP funds to the Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development for legislatively-named recipents. The The City and Borough of Wrangell was appropriated $86,110 through this legislation for capital projects. These funds are being administered through the Community Coastal Impact Assistance Program (CCIAP).
The City and Borough of Wrangell is a Unified Home Rule Borough located on the northwest tip of Wrangell Island, 155 miles south of Juneau and 89 miles northwest of Ketchikan. It is near the mouth of the Stikine River, a historic trade route to the Canadian Interior. The City and Borough of Wrangell has a population of 2,112 (2008 DCCED Certified Population), 2,582 square miles of land, and 883 square miles of submerged tidelands.
Wrangell is one of the oldest non-Native settlements in Alaska, and has become the primary settlement of the Stikine Tlingit. In 1811, the Russians began fur trading with area Tlingits and built a stockade in 1834. The island was named for Ferdinand Von Wrangel, manager of the Russian-American Co. around 1830. The British of Hudson Bay Co. leased the fort in 1840 and named the stockade Fort Stikine. A large Stikine Indian village known as Kotzlitzna was located 13 miles south of the fort. The Tlingits claimed their own ancient trade rights to the Stikine River and protested when the Hudson Bay Company began to use their trade routes. But two epidemics of smallpox reduced the Tlingit population by half. The fort was abandoned in 1849 when furs were depleted. In 1868, after Alaska's purchase by the U.S., a military post called Fort Wrangell was established and named for the island. The community continued to grow as an outfitter for gold prospectors. In 1903, the city was incorporated. By 1916, fishing and forest products had become the primary industries. In the 1930s, cold packing of crab and shrimp was occurring. Abundant spruce and hemlock resources have helped to expand the lumber and wood products industry. The Alaska Pulp Corporation sawmill, Wrangell's largest employer, closed in late 1994 but was reopened on a smaller scale in 1998 by Silver Bay Logging, Inc. The City of Wrangell was dissolved and reincorporated as the City and Borough of Wrangell in May 2008.
Wrangell's economy is based on commercial fishing, tourism, and timber from the Tongass National Forest. Fishing and fish processing are an important segment of the economy. 233 residents hold commercial fishing permits. There is a deep-water port, which is able to cater to large cruise ships. Stikine River and the surrounding area attract independent travelers for fishing, glacier viewing, and kayaking adventure tours. Anan Wildlife Observatory is famous for black and brown bear viewing.
As a recipient of CCIAP funds, the City and Borough of Wrangell has developed projects to be funded through the City and Borough's CCIAP allocation. The City and Borough ranked these projects in Tier 1 and Tier 2 project lists to address regional priorities. The Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development, Division of Community and Regional Affairs (DCRA) then sent the proposed project lists to the Department of Natural Resources for inclusion in the 2010 Amendment to the Alaska Coastal Impact Assistance Program Plan. The plan received federal approval, and the State has subsequently applied for and recieved federal awards for all approved projects in the CIAP plan. DCRA is now entering into grant agreements with Named Recipients for each approved CCIAP project.
The City and Borough of Wrangell at the base of Mt. Dewey. Photo: James Crippen
Economic Development Director
Division of Community and Regional Affairs
Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development