ALASKA MARINE HIGHWAY SYSTEM

The Alaska Marine Highway System is facing unprecedented budgetary, operational, and capital issues. At the same time, ferry service is increasingly important to the residents, businesses, and communities of Prince William Sound.

In 2015, ferry service in the Sound was revised to a single vessel format using the M/V Aurora. This change resulted in significant reductions in passenger and vessel embarkations (see Sound Opportunities, page 49). The impact of these reductions were frequently cited by businesses in the 2015 Prince William Sound Business Climate Survey.

We applaud the Walker Administration and our sister ARDOR, the Southeast Conference, for their efforts to explore sustainability for the system. In addition to supporting that effort, PWSEDD will examine regional options to ensure ferry operations.

PWSEDD Action Plan:

  • Coordinate community and regional advocacy efforts in Juneau
  • Support and partner with the Southeast Conference on the AMHS Reform Project
  • Appoint a Prince William Sound resident to serve on the AMHS Reform Steering Committee
  • Examine the Municipal Authority model for PWS routes

Resources:

AMHS Governance Study – Phase I Report
Learn about the advantages and challenges of three possible governance models for state ferries.
Download the report

AMHS Strategic Plan MOU
An agreement between the State of Alaska and the Southeast Conference to create strategic sustainability plan for the AMHS.

AMHS Reform Project Site
Southeast Conference’s project site provides resource materials and a listserv to stay up to date on all actions.

AMHS Presentation
Details budget and operating challenges, including the costs for PWS routes.

AMHS Ferry Reform Summit Videos
Southeast Conference has posted videos of the Statewide Ferry Reform Summit held August 20, 2016 in Anchorage.