Hatchery to reopen in Southeast Alaska with new owner

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PETERSBURG, Alaska (AP) - A hatchery in a small southeast Alaska community that closed down under a mountain of debt in 2014 has been purchased by a nonprofit organization that plans to produce chum and Chinook salmon at the site.

KFSK-FM reported the state foreclosed on the Gunnuk Creek hatchery's $22 million debt and put it up for sale. The Northern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association bought the facility in Kake for an undisclosed price this month.

Fred Parady, with the state's Department of Commerce Community and Economic Development, says the regional group was the only bidder on the property formerly owned by the Kake Non-Profit Fisheries Corporation.

The aquaculture association's general manager, Steve Reifenstuhl, says the group will invest $2.5 million in the hatchery before things get up and running.