Alaska Digest

Posted: Friday, January 23, 2004

Northern Light to host Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah

JUNEAU - Northern Light Church will host the Juneau Co-op Preschool's annual Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah Family Concert, dinner and ice cream social at 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 24.

The show will star Jeff Brown, Heart Strings Violinists, Margie Hamburger, Chris Fredell & the Floyd Dryden Guitar Club, Pre-School teachers and parents and Teri Tibbett.

Concert admission is $5 per person, $20 per family. Dinner and ice cream social admission is $5 per person.

For more information, call Rhonda Gardinier at 586-2656.

Businessman, 3 others indicted on drug charges

ANCHORAGE - An owner of a chain of hardware stores was indicted Thursday on federal charges that he provided cocaine to teenagers in exchange for sexual favors.

Josef F. Boehm, 59, president of Alaska Industrial Hardware, was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of conspiracy to distribute illegal drugs to individuals under 21. Indicted on the same charges were Allen K. Bolling, 39, Leslie J. Williams Jr., 39, and Bambi Tyree, 23, all of Anchorage.

Boehm, Bolling and Williams are in custody. Police were seeking Tyree.

Boehm owns a majority stake in Alaska Industrial Hardware, a chain with stores in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Wasilla, Eagle River, Kenai and Juneau.

According to the indictment, Boehm, Bolling, Williams and Tyree for two years, from late 2001 through December, conspired to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine to people under 21, primarily girls under the age of 18. They also are accused of offering drugs and money to mothers of teenage girls for permission to "party" with the girls.

Prosecutors said Bolling and Williams supplied Boehm with cocaine, which Boehm, Bolling and Tyree cooked into crack cocaine at Boehm's home on Anchorage's southwest side.

Prosecutors said Tyree and others recruited teenage girls to visit the home and area hotel rooms. All of the defendants are accused of giving the girls cocaine and crack, according to the indictment.

In exchange, the girls were expected to engage in sex with Boehm, Bolling and Williams, the indictment charged.

Gov.'s budget offers less than university wants

JUNEAU - The University of Alaska would receive far less than it's seeking under the governor's proposed budget.

The university wants an extra $10.5 million for its operating budget next year, $8.7 million of which would be spent on salary increases, university Budget Director Pat Pitney told a House Finance subcommittee Thursday.

The university has also requested $40.3 million for construction, with about $6 million of that for projects needed to meet safety and other code requirements.

The university's budget request does not include $8.8 million it needs to fund increased retirement system obligations. The university hopes that will be addressed through separate legislation because that's a problem all state agencies, as well as municipalities and school districts, are facing.

"This is a problem way beyond just the university," Pitney said. "And it's a big number."

Gov. Frank Murkowski proposed just $10.5 million for the university - all of it allocated in the capital budget - with the understanding that the university could spend it on operations if it chose to, Pitney said.

Pitney said if that's all the money UA gets, the operating budget would take precedence over construction projects. The exception would be those projects critical for safety.

Senate offers $2.6 billion for Alaska roads projects

WASHINGTON - A Senate committee is proposing to give Alaska more than $2.6 billion for highway projects during the next six years.

The amount proposed is even larger than that suggested by Alaska Rep. Don Young, chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, when he unveiled his preferred bill in November.

The Alaska money amounts to $120 million a year.

Many in Congress are hoping to pass the bill sometime in the next few weeks, according to the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.

Nationwide, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee's version released Wednesday authorizes $255 billion for highway projects during the coming six years. The House Transportation Committee's version authorizes $298 billion.

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