Friday, January 30, 2004

Wyatt named new director of Chamber
For Chris Wyatt, the strength of businesses in Juneau is a reflection of the overall strength of the town. "When you have a healthy business community, you have a healthy community in which to live," said Wyatt, who will begin serving as executive director of the Juneau Chamber of Commerce on Sunday.

A word of praise
Thank you, Sarah J.H. Brooks (whoever you are), for your clever "My Turn" on education. If our educational system can still produce someone with your talent and humor, we must be doing something right. I would be pleased for my children to have you for a teacher.

Who really should be drug tested
It seems to me that if it is all right to require a 15-year-old that had red eyes in school to pee in a cup to prove his innocence and it's all right to pee test a store clerk at Alaska Industrial Hardware just to apply for a job, then it must be all right to require that the judge and owner of this store also submit to the degrading act of peeing in a cup, in front of an audience, to prove they are also not users of alcohol or other drugs.

Legislation protects fish, fishermen from pesticides
This winter the state Legislature will consider a bill important to public health and the Alaskan salmon industry. Right now it is legal for private corporations to spray toxic chemicals from airplanes in Alaska. Senate Bill 233 would ban this practice to protect our health and natural resources.

If lock-step required, what's the point?
I'm shocked that an elected representative is punished for taking a position on an issue that means something to him and many constituents. It never occurred to me that when you join the ranks of the Legislature you cater to the wishes of the powerbrokers instead of the electorate.

A few questions for our politicians
Politician, why are you afraid? Why do you fear the work of parliamentary debate and seek ease in the political force of caucus voting?

Unbalanced Super Bowl ads
The sports pages tell us that the Super Bowl is approaching. What a lot of us do not know is that huge companies like CBS that control access to the publicly owned airwaves have a constitutional obligation to air opposing points of view during this widely viewed event. CBS refuses to air an ad that highlights the current administration's $1 trillion deficit, claiming it is too controversial.

Don't compare abortions to 9/11
In response to Friday's (Jan. 23) article "Planned Parenthood Draws Debate:" James Sedlak is absolutely out of line to compare abortions to Sept. 11. The two are so ridiculously different; to compare them like that is outright ignorant. A terrorist attack vs. a woman's choice. How exactly are they related? He is using Sept. 11 as an emotional trigger in attempt to make us draw a connection between abortion and an act of religious extremists.

Better long-term alternatives than drilling
After reading the article about Gale Norton signing a plan to open up 8.8 million acres of Alaska to oil and gas development, my mind once again turns to ANWR and the oil drilling debate. When will the truth be told? I once supported drilling in Alaska, until I did a little research and uncovered some rather interesting facts.

Let businesses decide their own rules
Again, my latest discussion about rights has been degraded by others complaining about their right to smoke-free air everywhere they go. This is simply unreasonable when referring to privately owned establishments.

Around Town
Around Town is a listing of local nonprofit events.

Police & Fire
Reports from Juneau police, fire officials and state troopers.

Anonymous hiker finds one lucky dog
Thane residents Chris and Benthe Mertl were hosting a house-warming party Saturday when they got a call from the animal shelter. "We were having too much fun," Chris Mertl said. "They called around 9, and we didn't get the message until close to midnight." But the news was good. Tsuga, the Mertls' 2-year-old Canadian husky, had been found after being missing for five days.

FYI
Births, judgments and other legal matters.

Juneau to host homeland security conference
Representatives of Alaska's communities will converge on Juneau in mid-March to participate in the state's first homeland security conference.

Wetlands neighbors call for nonhunting buffer
One year after the state intensified its education of duck hunters on the Mendenhall Wetlands, nearby residents are still looking for ways to protect their families and homes from being sprayed with shot.

City will thaw outside water lines for a fee
The city's Water Utility Division is once again offering thawing service for outside water lines. Its equipment had broken down before the latest cold snap.

Juneau to become first Alaska city to receive new wind-shear detection system
A low-level wind-shear detection program that soon will be in place at the Juneau Airport will be the first of its kind in Alaska, and one of 10 in the United States, Federal Aviation Administration officials said.

Correction
Due to an editor's error, a story on a bill instituting a graduated driver's license inaccurately stated that teens would have to drive with a learner's permit for six months under the proposed law. Teenagers can get a driver's permit at the age of 14.

Police & Fire
Reports from Juneau police, fire officials and state troopers.

Man gets 15 years in prison for attack
Katherine Tanner told a judge Wednesday that she kept her eyes open during a near-fatal attack by her husband because she was afraid she might never open them again.

Clarifications
Updates on previous Empire articles.

Around Town
Around Town is a listing of local nonprofit events.

Woman sentenced to six months for embezzling almost $27,600
A 61-year-old woman was ordered this week to spend six months in jail after pleading guilty to second-degree theft from a local construction company.

Wolf killing ban in question
Protections for wolves on Douglas Island and for a white bear seen near Juneau likely will be reconsidered when the state Board of Game takes up Southeast issues in the fall.

Bell and Kohlhase to marry
Robin Francia Kohlhase, daughter of Robert Kohlhase and Susan Penning, will marry Mark Bell on April, 10, 2004, in Seattle.

Photo: Generous donation
Jetta Whitaker, left, executive director of the Glory Hole, accepts a check for $2,300 from Juneau-Douglas High School InterAct club officers Alida Bus, Lena Gilbertson, Zoe Olson and Tim Peterson. The money was earned through pledge money for sleeping out in the JDHS parking lot on Nov. 1, 2003, for the Homeless Awareness Project.

Heidersdorf and Gilday to wed
Katherine J. Gilday of Juneau and Theodore D. Heidersdorf of Juneau will be married at 5 p.m. on July 31, 2004, at the Shrine of Saint Therese. A reception will follow at 6 p.m. at Glacier Gardens.

Neighbors Digest
Community news in brief.

Student recognitions
Achivements by local sudents.

Leamer and Foss wed
Lola L. Foss of Sitka and Kelly O. Leamer of Juneau were married Jan. 1, 2004, at the Mendenhall Glacier in Juneau. A reception will be held in August aboard a chartered catamaran. Friends and relatives are invited to the reception.

Dorothy Irene Cary
Juneau resident Dorothy Irene Cary, 78, died Jan. 19, 2004, in Juneau.

My Turn: Life in Afghanistan more hopeful than the headlines
I returned to Alaska from Afghanistan in June 2003 after completing the construction of two girls schools in the Northern Afghanistan province of Jawzjan. I had been back for a couple of weeks and began to get e-mails from friends about girls schools burned down by extremists.

My Turn: Income tax is fair, hiking fees are not
Yes, I had listened to the broadcast of the City-Borough meeting, but wasn't paying a lot of attention other than the sewer and water people said maintenance and improvements were overdue. My mental question was - why? Why wasn't this done as we went along?

Sports in Juneau
Sports in Juneau is a service provided by the Juneau Empire to provide information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

Boozer sits out game for funeral
Cavaliers forward Carlos Boozer missed Wednesday night's game against the Miami Heat so he could be with his family following his grandmother's funeral.

Crimson Bear gridders secure top Outside opponent
The Juneau-Douglas High School football team will host a squad from Washington State in September - a high-caliber team that has drawn attention for its skills on the field and for its staff on the sidelines.

Sports in Juneau
Sports in Juneau is a service provided by the Juneau Empire to provide information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

Adult Ordway league basketball standings
Final standings for the Juneau Parks and Recreation Department's Adult Ordway Basketball League.

Local Briefs
Local sports news in brief

Alaska Sportswriters' prep basketball poll
The Alaska Sportswriters High School Basketball Polls, as voted on by statewide sports reporters and compiled by the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.

Juneau wrestlers head to regions
Yes, the Crimson Bears want to reclaim the championship that Ketchikan has won four of the past five seasons. But there are more important things to accomplish. The main goal of the region meet will be trying to qualify as many wrestlers as possible for the Class 4A state championships the next weekend at Chugiak High School.

Juneau girls on '3' spree
There's nothing like a 3. A blocked shot is great. A breakaway bucket? Sweet. But for value in points and emotion, for sealing a win or starting a rally, there is nothing like draining a 3-point basket - and the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team has been doing a lot of that this season.

Alaska state wrestling rankings
Here are the state's top wrestlers in each weight class for the Class 4A season as ranked by the Web site, http://www.alaskawrestling.com, which is run by Palmer's Eric Wade.

Rolling Cavs dare to talk playoffs
Day after day, LeBron James politely answers the same humdrum questions. But Thursday, facing the usual bouquet of microphones and tape recorders, the rookie star was quizzed about something rarely talked about in Cleveland the past few years.

Crimson Bear boys host Malemutes
When most schools schedule their homecoming games, they usually find a mediocre opponent so they can give their homecoming crowds an easy victory.

Juneau girls crunch Dimond
Practice pays off. Zone defense is what the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team prepared for, and zone defense is what the Crimson Bears got - and exploited - in a 49-37 home victory over the Dimond Lynx on Thursday evening.

Judge orders Exxon Mobil to pay up
A federal judge in Anchorage on Wednesday ordered Exxon Mobil Corp. to pay nearly $7 billion in punitive damages and interest to thousands of fishermen and others affected by the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill.

Fish and Game predicts strong salmon run
This year's salmon run looks strong, according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game's 2004 forecast released Wednesday. The agency is predicting a statewide run of 196 million fish and a run of about 67.5 million fish in Southeast. Last year's statewide prediction was 150 million and the forecast for Southeast was 63 million.

Report says cruise ship pollution down
Cruise ships visiting Alaska are dumping less wastewater into the Inside Passage due to a state law passed in 2001, according to the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

Photo: Talking fish and game
Alaska Rep. Nick Stepovich, a Fairbanks Republican, talks with Rep. Peggy Wilson, a Wrangell Republican, during a House Fish and Game Committee meeting Wednesday at the state Capitol.

Group to recall governor collects signatures
A group of Alaskans in Anchorage began gathering signatures Wednesday in an effort to recall Gov. Frank Murkowski and Lt. Gov. Loren Leman. The group cited incompetence, neglect of duties and lack of fitness for office as reasons for the recall.

This Day in History
In Alaska; in the nation; in the world.

This Day in History
In Alaska; in the nation; in the world.

Lawmakers may restore $88 million in cuts
The Legislature is poised to restore more than $88 million cut from state accounts following a partisan fight between Majority Republicans and Democrats last session.

New bill would require elections for Senate vacancies
U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski may not have to run for election this fall on the same ballot as a citizens' initiative that's critical of the way she got her job.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Star-crossed Symphony
The bard, it seems, is here to stay. Just six days after Perseverance Theatre's all-Tlingit "Macbeth" closed, William Shakespeare is back at the Juneau-Douglas High School auditorium at 8 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 31, in the Juneau Symphony Orchestra's evening of concertos and Sergei Prokofiev's "Romeo and Juliet Suite No. 2."

Fit for a wooden ball
If you attended one of the last two Wearable Art shows, then you remember David Walker's creations. A carpenter at University of Alaska Southeast, an artist in his free time and an inventor (in his Bonnie Brae garage) by necessity, his medium is wood. But his imagination is far from wooden.

Paulick plays 'tone poem' for friend
French horn player Bill Paulick has had a special affinity for Richard Strauss' "Concerto for Horn" since he was a high school student in Whittier, Calif., in the mid-1960s. Three years after he first picked up the horn, it was the first piece he chose for a solo.

Briefly
Local arts and entertainment news in brief.

O'Malley At Large: Everything I know, I learned from my little brother
It was a Wednesday, the middle of the day, and I was sitting at the kitchen table, drinking cold coffee and quietly having a crisis. I had no temp work, and no freelance story ideas to try to sell. I was broke, my imagination felt tapped out, and among other bills, rent would soon be due. My breathing went shallow and my eyes started to burn.

Love strikes the luckless
Local review of "The Cooler."

Toe cartoon: In the Swamp
Cartoon by local artist Toe.

Street dancers FLY into ensemble
In 1993, at a street festival in Houston, dance choreographer Kathy Wood met a group of Hispanic and black teenage boys who knew how to dance to hiphop, but knew little self-discipline.

What's happening
Upcoming local arts and entertainment events.

'An Evening with FLY'
What's included during Friday's show "An Evening with FLY."

Movies where & when
Local movie times and locations.

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