Arctic Trails Chapter 71 Fairbanks, Alaska

Right-of-Way News and Spotlights


See below for Chapter 71 news and blog items:

With the City of North Pole and IGU gearing up for the next phase of their utility expansion, it is an appropriate time to revisit this article published in the Daily News-Miner on November 28, 2015.


This is an international level award, named after the IRWA’s founder, Frank Balfour.  This is the 7th time a Chapter 71 member has won this award; no small feat from a small chapter!  Previous winners include:

  • Charlie Parr, SR/WA, 1991
  • Sharon McLeod-Everette, SR/WA, 1993
  • Chris Guinn, SR/WA, MAI, 1992 and 1994
  • Paul Costello, SR/WA, 1995
  • Bill Newman, 1996


Chapter 71 Election Results

  • President:  Stu Pechek
  • President-Elect:  Steve Taylor
  • Secretary:  George Stefan
  • Treasurer:  Terry Griffin


Supreme Court of Alaska:  S-16468, P.3d, October 5, 2018

The owners of real property near Big Lake appeal a superior court decision, following trial, in favor of the State, Department of Natural Resources (DNR), that recognized an RS 2477 right of way over their property for the Historic Iditarod Trail and a prescriptive easement for public use of a road. The property owners argue that the evidence did not support the court’s findings of the right of way and the easement; that the court made a number of procedural and evidentiary errors that collectively deprived them of procedural due process; and that the large attorney’s fees award in favor of the State was excessive in light of its likely deterrent effect and the State’s decision to vigorously litigate this case for its precedential effect.

Supreme Court of Alaska:  411 P.3d 560,  January 26, 2018

Two adjoining landowners dispute the creation and continuing validity of an easement for ingress and egress to and from property near Fairbanks. The superior court held that a valid easement was created but had been extinguished by prescription. We are asked to decide whether one party’s mining activities—placing gravel piles, equipment, and a processing plant in the easement—were sufficient to prescriptively extinguish the entire easement. We hold that they were not. Although the processing plant extinguished the portion of the easement on which it stood, the evidence presented regarding the gravel piles and equipment was insufficient to support extinguishing the entire easement.

Charlie Parr, SR/WA, was recognized at the Arctic Trails Chapter 71 Christmas party for his role as one of the founding members of Chapter 71, for his expert work over the years in the right-of-way field, and for his continuous role as member and mentor within our chapter.  See the news article above for more about his life and his work.  Congratulations and Thank You, Charlie!

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Archived Chapter 71 News and Spotlights


See below for archived Chapter 71 blogs:


‎Tuesday, ‎May ‎10, ‎2016, ‏‎9:34:17 AM | charlieparrGo to full article

Who owns the right to store natural gas in a depleted reservoir? Did you know that “pore space” is “mineral”? For an interesting discussion of that question and the nature of surface and subsurface rights, see the Alaska Supreme Court’s May 6, 2016 decision in City of Kenai v. Cook Inlet Natural Gas Storage, State of Alaska Department of Natural Resources, and Cook Inlet Region Inc. (No. 7101):  373 P.3d 473

‎Thursday, ‎October ‎22, ‎2015, ‏‎7:55:37 AM | charlieparrGo to full article

Depending on the dates involved and other circumstances, the mere filing of a homestead application can segregate the land applied for from the public domain. Such segregation could prevent the imposition of a section line easement when the land is surveyed. That was the finding of the Alaska Supreme Court on October 16, 2015 in Luker v. Sykes, Opinion No. 7059. Open question: Could this principle also influence how the various Public Land Order (PLO) rights of way affect the land applied for? (This case involves land south of Chena Hot Springs Road near Grange Hall Road.-cp)

  In 1961, BLM issued a patent for a Small Tract in the Anchorage area.  The patent contained the following language: “This patent is subject to a right-of-way not exceeding 50 feet in width, for roadway and public utilities purposes, to be located along the north boundary of said land.”  In an interesting March 2013 opinion, the Alaska Supreme Court interpreted that language as an express common law dedication which required some form of acceptance, either by a public body or by actual use.  Because the Superior Court had not made specific findings of acceptance, the case was remanded for determination whether there had been acceptance.  (One of the things that makes this interesting is that the 50’ strip is within East 136th Avenue!)  The case, McCarrey v. Kaylor, (301 P.3d 559) is worth a read. – CLP

‎Wednesday, ‎December ‎4, ‎2013, ‏‎3:24:13 PM | charlieparrGo to full article

For an interesting read about the “hostility” element required to establish an easement by prescription, see Dault v. Shaw, Alaska Supreme Court Opinion No. 6847 dated November 29, 2013. This opinion cites (and quotes very extensively from) many prior opinions of the Court on prescriptive easements. There is a vigorous dissent, and the Superior Court decision being appealed is attached to the Opinion. You do not normally get this much information in one Opinion. (322 P.3d 84)

‎Monday, ‎March ‎4, ‎2013, ‏‎9:40:22 AM | charlieparrGo to full article

For a comprehensive treatise on Highway Rights of Way in Alaska, see the monograph with that title authored by John Bennett, PLS, SR/WA.  This paper, first published in 1993, was updated and revised in January 2013.  It covers the history and uses of highway rights of way, citing statutes, regulations, court and IBLA decisions among other sources.  Bennett addresses RS 2477, section line easements, PLO’s, and other means by which rights of way are created, defined, and used.  This is an essential reference for all involved in any aspect of the right of way profession.

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Fairbanks North Star Borough Land Sales


Check out the *new* FNSB direct land sale procedures. Land for sale can be found here.  Don’t wait, see what’s available today!

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Job Opportunities


See below for Fairbanks area job opportunities:


Fairbanks:  ADOT&PF Airport Leasing Specialist III

  • Posted:  04/05/2019           Closing:  04/26/2019
  • Full Time, $4,921.00 Monthly
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April 24, 2019 @ Miguel's Authentic Mexican Cuisine

April 24, 2019 Membership & Program Luncheon

Crystal Haman, Vice President & Title Manager of Yukon Title, will be presenting on the effects of the Fairbanks Recorder’s Office closing and how to use the electronic recording system.  Please read her biography.

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Chapter 49 Educational Courses Anchorage, Alaska


Seminar: Alaska Land Descriptions - May 3, 2019

May 3, 2019


Presented By the International Right of Way Association IRWA Chapter 49
Speaker: Timothy Mullikin, PLS, SR/WA

Friday, May 3, 2019, 8 am to 5 pm

Municipality of Anchorage Offices Limited Space – 4700 Elmore Road, Training Room #30
Anchorage, AK 99507

How to Register: Submit Registration Form and Payment to: Kathryn Schreckenghost, (907) 646-5169,, fax (907) 770-7749, or U.S. Mail: c/o Electric Power Systems, 3305 Arctic Blvd., Suite 201, Anchorage AK 99503-4575

Cost: All attendees $125.00, Includes coffee, morning muffins and lunch!

REGISTRATION FORM – Alaska Land Descriptions

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C-100 Principles of Land Acquisition

May 22, 2019

Course 100: Principles of Land Acquisition – May 22 and 23, 2019

Course Description: This course outlines real estate law terms and concepts. Participants will gain awareness of environmental issues, learn the methods of acquiring and transferring title to realty, three views of engineering plans and the fundamentals in property description systems. Topics also include the requirements of a valid contract, information on easements, deeds, leases, the appraisal process, successful negotiations, and relocation requirements involved with property acquisition and management.

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C-102 Elevating Your Ethical Awareness

May 24, 2019

Course 102: Elevating Your Ethical Awareness

Course Description:

This course is intended to help resolve ethics and compliance issues by providing the information, tools and resources necessary to make good decisions. Participants will leave this course with an overview of IRWA’s Code of Conduct, Rules and Standards. These are what guide us and provide an understanding of how to apply this knowledge in serving our clients and members in the utmost ethical manner while always striving to fulfill our purpose of “improving the quality of people’s lives through infrastructure development.”

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C- 800 Principals of Real Estate Law

November 1, 2019


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C-205 Barganing Negotiations

December 1, 2019


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C-700 Introduction to Property/Asset Management

December 1, 2019


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Chapter 71 Educational Courses Fairbanks, Alaska

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