Knowles named Ramseur chief of staff
JUNEAU - David Ramseur, deputy chief of staff for Gov. Tony Knowles the past seven years, was elevated to chief of staff this morning.
Ramseur will succeed Jim Ayers, whose last day is Friday. Ayers is leaving to head the Juneau office of an international environmental organization.
Ramseur, 47, was press secretary to Gov. Steve Cowper from 1986 to 1990. He came to Alaska in 1979 as a reporter for the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, according to Knowles spokesman Bob King.
No decision has been made about the vacancy for deputy chief of staff, King said. "There'll be an internal reorganization. I don't know if we're going to be bringing anybody new in at this point."
Some speechwriting duties may be turned over to Bruce Scandling, who has been a special assistant to the governor on human services and education issues.
This is the final year of the Knowles administration. The governor is barred by the constitution from seeking a third consecutive term.
Injured girl improving after relapse
JUNEAU - Charlotte Brown, the 7-year-old seriously injured in a vehicle accident last month, is showing improvement today despite a relapse in her condition just before Christmas, her parents said this week.
Charlotte's father, Jason Brown, said she stopped breathing for several minutes the night before Christmas Eve, landing her back in pediatric intensive care at Children's Regional Hospital in Seattle. Brown said his daughter wasn't getting oxygen to her lungs due to a blockage in her airway. Doctors also discovered she had developed a bacterial infection, Brown said.
Charlotte was originally treated for multiple internal injuries, back injuries and a spinal chord injury following the accident.
But Jason Brown said his daughter is breathing on her own and managed to sit in her wheelchair for 10 minutes Monday afternoon. Brown said she is scheduled to begin rehabilitation next week.
"She was able to look outside for the first time since Dec. 8 when the accident took place," Brown said. "That was good for her although she spotted a swing outside and started crying."
Mitkof timber sale to get more review
JUNEAU - The U.S. Forest Service will take another look at elements in a proposed timber sale on Mitkof Island based on concerns outlined in an appeal.
The Woodpecker timber sale environmental impact statement called for harvest of 16 million board feet of timber on 1,300 acres of land 27 miles south of Petersburg.
Deputy Regional Forester James Caplan directed Tongass staff to address discrepancies in timber volume information, sale economics and the effects of the proposed harvest on deer. The issues were raised in appeal filed by the Forest Conservation Council of Santa Fe, N.M.
Forest Conservation Council Executive Director Bryan Bird said the Woodpecker sale calls for new roads in a now-roadless area.
Corrective action should be accomplished by the end of 2002, according to Tongass Forest Supervisor Tom Puchlerz. Three other appeals were dismissed because the appellants didn't participate in public involvement opportunities earlier, according to the Forest Service.
Compiled from staff reports.