Greg Kim

News Reporter

Greg Kim is a news reporter for KYUK. In his past life, he worked as a software engineer in Seattle, WA. He visited Bethel in 2019 for the Kuskokwim 300, and decided he wanted to tell the stories of the people in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.

Bethel's Fire Chief Bill Howell serving as Acting City Manager
Greg Kim / KYUK

Bethel Fire Chief Bill Howell is now Bethel’s Acting City Manager. City council appointed Howell to the position last week, three days after publicly firing former City Manager Pete Williams. As KYUK reports, Howell has sat in the city manager’s seat before, but never under these circumstances. 

Christine Trudeau / KYUK

Bethel City Council introduced an ordinance last week that would pay its council members for attending meetings. It wasn’t the first time council has considered compensating itself. Five times, a version of an ordinance to compensate city council members has been introduced; five times it has been voted down. 

Bethel Fire Chief and Acting City Manager Bill Howell
City of Bethel

Fire Chief Bill Howell is serving as Bethel’s Acting City Manager after Bethel City Council appointed him to the position on Friday. All council members attended the special meeting except Perry Barr, who was attending his daughter’s high school graduation. Vice-Mayor Raymond “Thor” Williams nominated Howell for the position, and the rest of the council unanimously agreed. 

LKSD will take over operations of Suurvik Cinema, beginning Jan. 1, 2020.
Airn Carl

Bethel residents might have to find a new place to watch this summer’s blockbuster movies. The Suurvik Cinema at Kipusvik will likely close down July 1, at least temporarily. That’s according to Lower Kuskokwim School District Superintendent Dan Walker. KYUK sat down with Walker to find out why plans being made for the Ayaprun Elitnaurvik Yup’ik Immersion School would affect Bethel moviegoers.

Christine Trudeau / KYUK

In the same meeting in which the Bethel City Council fired its city manager, it voted to introduce a measure to pay council members, provided Bethel voters approve. The ordinance, if passed, would pay council members for their service, but not before a public vote. The compensation would include $100 for every regular city council meeting attended, $25 for every special city council meeting, and in addition, water and sewer subsidies that could total several hundred dollars a month. The vote was split 5 to 2, with council members Leif Albertson and Mitchell Forbes voting against.

The City of Bethel has not had a permanent City Manager since former City Manager Pete Williams was fired April 23, 2019.
Greg Kim / KYUK

The Bethel City Council fired City Manager Pete Williams Tuesday night. Council members were sharply divided in a 4 to 3. Voting for Williams to go were Mayor Fred Watson, Vice Mayor Raymond “Thor” Williams, and council members Fritz Charles and Carole Jung-Jordan. Voting for Williams to stay were council members Leif Albertson, Perry Barr, and Mitchell Forbes.

Christine Trudeau / KYUK

On Tuesday, the Bethel City Council will look at introducing an ordinance that would compensate city council members for their duties. Council member Fritz Charles proposed the ordinance, which would pay council members $300 per month and subsidize their water and sewer costs. Council member duties include participating in regular city council meetings, special meetings, and budget meetings. Each council member must also be a member of at least one committee or commission for the city. 

BRHS students Nicholai Chase and Calvin Samson in front of their science fair posters
Greg Kim

Two Bethel Regional High School students took top honors in the state science and engineering fair. Calvin Samson won first place in the “Animal Science” category, and Nicholai Chase took home the “In Vitro Biology” award. The contest took place in Anchorage last month. KYUK sat down with the students to talk about their accomplishments and future plans.

American Ninja Warriors Nate DeHaan and Nick Hanson on DeHaan's Warped Wall
Katie Basile

The television show “American Ninja Warrior” enters its 11th season next month, and again will feature the Eskimo Ninja, Nick Hanson from Unalakleet. Nick visited Bethel last week to hang out with his buddy, fellow American Ninja Warrior, Nate DeHaan. These two comprise two thirds of all the Ninja Warriors to ever come from Alaska. KYUK sat down with the two ninjas to talk about how they became friends, and what it means for them to represent rural Alaska on the show.

Bethel Potholes
Aleina Tanabe

Bethel residents often ask, “Why are the roads so bad?” KYUK sat down with Bethel’s City Manager Pete Williams to find out.

“Gravel is gravel, and there will always be a need to maintain it. And the worse the weather is, the more it needs to be maintained,” explained Williams.