Conference of Alaskans




February 12, 2004

Leaders must be held responsible for choices
We need the people at the top to be laid off. TWe need the people at the top to be laid off. Their decision to try and build a new high school is outrageous. They can't even keep the teachers employed.

Is a payout really the answer to fiscal crisis?
We pay our government officials good money to figure out a workable plan to run our state. If we Alaskans take a one time payoff on our PFD and grant government access to the oil revenue how then can these high officials justify their position as state leaders and problem solvers? A child could figure a solution like that out and that is exactly the person we need to think about.

Stopping prejudice in high school isn't easy
I am Katie Damian, a junior at Juneau-Douglas High School. I was one of the many students who heard about the racial sign on the bus derogatory towards Natives. I think it's absolutely wrong. People should not be racist, especially on a public school bus in front of high school students. It's just as wrong as putting up signs saying "white trash" or "stupid Mexicans."

There needs to be more spending on education
At the root of the current debate about whether Juneau should have one high school or two are sincere concerns for the quality of our children's education. Which choice will give students the most comprehensive curriculum, personal attention and rewarding high school experience?

Why smoking ordinance is valuable for health
On this 40th anniversary of the landmark Surgeon General's Report on Smoking (1964), we know some extremely vital things about tobacco and smoking.

New school is cheaper, better in long run
The debate over a new high school is heating up. The issues are complex, emotions are running high and there is much information to digest. There is considerable unavoidable uncertainty and those on either side of the issue are forced to make projections that can result in very different outcomes. Who to believe?

Willing to sacrifice PFD for the kids' sake
As a father of two young children I hear my fair share of youthful, self-centered bickering. How many times must parents endure our kids' "mine, mine, mine" daily mantra? The current debates over use of PFD monies and disappearing funding for education rings of the same childish quarrels.

Where are Juneau's preeminent scholars?
In my opinion, lack of education is why Juneau is just a tourist town.

Relying on dropouts?
The need for a second high school is even more desperate than one might think from listening to the arguments.

Is conference really impartial?
The Preliminary Report of the state of Alaska's Long-Range Financial Planning Commission (Aug. 12, 1995) shows that the commission chair was Brian Rogers.

Smoking, non-smoking night life can co-exist
Much of the discussion about whether or not Juneau bars should be smoke-free has hinged on the words "freedom" and "choice."

Don't endanger charter school with cuts
The Juneau Community Charter School is part of the Juneau School District, open to any child via a yearly lottery. It probably gives the most bang per buck of any money spent on public education in Juneau.

Photo: Musical treat
Liz Leach listens intently while Juneau Community Charter School students Jacob Moser, left and Orion Cohen, right, perform a piano recital Wednesday at the Juneau Pioneers' Home.

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

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

Students, adults petition district to combat racism
As a student, Barbara Cadiente-Nelson left Juneau-Douglas High School because she couldn't take the racism there, she told about 60 students and adults who met Thursday afternoon at ANB Hall to talk about prejudice at school.

Rowcroft attorney wants next trial to be moved out of town
The next time Frank Brian Rowcroft stands trial, his attorney wants it to be outside of Juneau.

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

Photo: Trip to the dentist
Dental assistant Kathy Bergy, left, watches as Shannon Mason, 4, and Katelyn Reddekopp, 4, open wide for Dr. Mohammed Awad during the Children's Dental Health Fair on Wednesday at the SEARHC dental department.

Empire names Thomson, Loomis to head newsroom
The Juneau Empire has filled the top two editorial positions in the newsroom. Brandon Loomis, an experienced reporter who grew up in Ketchikan, has been named city editor. His responsibilities are the daily management of reporters and photographers and editing local news and the opinion pages.

Boat owners face bigger fees under new proposal
Boat owners would pay more to dock their vessels at the city's harbors under a new Juneau Docks and Harbors Board proposal.

Olympic skier returns home to share skills at Eaglecrest
Hilary Lindh has traveled the world as a three-time Olympic skier and the 1997 world downhill champion, but she was born and raised in Juneau. Now she's coming back to Eaglecrest to share some of her skills this weekend.

Photo: Following the crab
Mark Buchkoski prepares crab pot lines on the vessel Fortune on Thursday at Harris Harbor. Buchkoski and other crab fishermen are getting ready for the tanner crab season, which opens this Sunday for five days. "The F/V Fortune will be fishing where the crab are at," Buchkoski said.

Police search for clues in Lemon Creek shooting
Juneau police are investigating a possible drive-by shooting after a man was hospitalized with an apparent gunshot wound early Wednesday. Police Sgt. Troy Wilson said he could not release information about the man, who was taken from the Lemon Creek area to Bartlett Regional Hospital. The man received a leg wound that did not appear to be life-threatening, Wilson said.

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

Births, judgments and other legal matters.

Warwick and Morgan to wed
Sydney Warwick of Fairbanks, and Yuri Morgan of Juneau, will be married June 12, 2004, in Fairbanks. A reception will follow immediately after the ceremony.

Neighbors Digest
Community news in brief.

Yoga heaven
With an exotic reputation that keeps many people at a distance, yoga has come a long way since it was introduced in the West in the 1960s. Originally intended for 12-year-old monks to prepare for long periods of sitting meditation, the Eastern practice of Hatha yoga has been modified to suit the fast-paced West.

Student recognitions
Local student honors and awards.

Brown and Hinman to marry
Rachel Brown and Michael Hinman, both of Juneau, will be married in a private ceremony Saturday, March 20, 2004, at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center. Friends of the couple are invited to attend the reception at 6:30 p.m., March 20, at the Tlingit and Haida Hall on Hospital Drive.

... for your comfort and prayers
Our heartfelt thanks are sent to the people who provided words of comfort and prayers during the brief illness and passing of Kenneth W. James, our brother, father, uncle, and grandfather, on Jan. 1, 2004.






Robert Grant Mitchell
Douglas resident Robert Grant "Bob" Mitchell, 86, died Feb. 8, 2004, at his home in Douglas.

My Turn: Prison expansion needed, but private options need scrutiny
I support the expansion of the public prison system in Alaska, specifically at the already developed location just north of Palmer. For four years I have been working on public prison legislation.

My Turn: The Last Frontier - not the past frontier
Every day we are thankful to be Alaskans. We have the most beautiful place to live in the world and the best neighbors. We are most proud of the Alaskan tradition of helping each other when times are tough. Think of the 1964 earthquake. Alaskans put the state back together by facing the challenge head-on and working side by side.

Boozer is thriving as an NBA throwback
Joe Tait noticed it a year ago. Carlos Boozer walking down the Gund Arena hallway, holding hands with his wife and talking to anyone who wanted a moment.

Sports Briefs
Local sports news in brief.

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

Mixed conditions on '04 Yukon Quest trail
Mushers preparing to head out on the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Trail have an extra worry this year when it comes to getting to the finish line.

Juneau Gun Club trap shooting
Standings through week four.

On several occasions in Wednesday's and Thursday's Empire, the record of Hoonah's boys and girls basketball teams failed to account for several games played in early January at Skagway.

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.

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.

Nets rout Cavaliers
New Jersey's interim coach has a permanent NBA record. Not bad for a kid who couldn't even make his high school basketball team. Lawrence Frank improved to 9-0 since taking over the Nets, who got 27 points from Kerry Kittles and won their 10th straight game Wednesday night, 105-85 over the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Juneau girls victorious in battle of Bears
Senior Tasha McKoy scored 18 points - most on layups off steals - and freshman Talisa Rhea chipped in 10 as the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team used energetic defense to trounce Bartlett 61-37 on Wednesday night in Anchorage.

Canadians win Challenge
Canadian couple Greg and Denise McHale claimed the team title in the 2004 Fulda Challenge, a cold-weather extreme sports circuit that ended Sunday in Dawson City, Yukon Territory.

Juneau girls win at West
The Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team almost couldn't take the heat. Faced with hot hotel rooms, an overheated locker room - even record warm temperatures in Anchorage earlier this week - the Crimson Bears were sluggish on the court but managed to down the host West Anchorage Eagles 56-40 on Thursday.

Poll results
Results of straw polls taken Wednesday during the Conference of Alaskans.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Conference strays from agenda, takes look at income tax
The Conference of Alaskans, tasked with answering four questions regarding the Alaska Permanent Fund and the fiscal gap, strayed outside of the confines of its agenda Wednesday to explore taxes and other solutions.

Bill would lower tax for direct marketers
Lowering the tax paid by fishermen who sell their fish directly to consumers could spur more salmon harvesters to start value-added processing, according to a senator sponsoring such a tax break.

Photo: Racing to the finish
Joe Redington drives his team of sled dogs to a second-place finish in the Exxon Mobil Open on Sunday at Tozier Track in Anchorage.

Google bans ads that criticize cruise ships
Online search engine leader Google has banned the ads of an environmental group protesting a major cruise line's sewage treatment methods, casting a spotlight on the editorial policies that control the popular Web site's lucrative marketing program.

Bunde wants permafund to cover workers comp
Sen. Con Bunde proposed the state use the Alaska Permanent Fund to plug a $20 million hole in a program intended to pick up unpaid workers compensation claims.

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

Judge denies request to move ex-cop's trial
The trial of a former Nome police officer accused of murder will be held in the community, after a judge denied a defense request to move the case elsewhere.

Conference backs guaranteed PFD
The Conference of Alaskans ended its three-day search for state funding solutions Thursday by recommending constitutional protection for Alaska Permanent Fund dividend checks and use of some of the fund for state services.

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

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Legislators consider tourism tax bill
Several tourism businesses told legislators Thursday they want to tax their customers so they can spend more money marketing Alaska to visitors. But not all in the industry favor the plan.

Discussing Oz
"Oz" characters discuss the meaning of the play.

What's happening
Upcoming local arts and entertainment events.

Banff Film Festival returns to Juneau
From ice-climbing in the Canadian Rockies to paragliding in the Himalayas, from the nomadic lives of Tibetan herders to the climbing adventures of Biscuit the dog, this year's Banff Mountain Film Festival World Tour seeks to capture the spirit of mountain adventure. The festival travels to Centennial Hall on Friday, Feb. 13, and begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are available only at the door, which opens at 6:15. The cost is $12 for general admission, $6 for students.

Welcome to Oz
Kansas, as described in the first chapter of L. Frank Baum's 1900 novel "The Wonderful Wizard of Oz," is "a broad sweep of flat country that reached to the edge of the sky in all directions." As visualized by director Ryan Conarro in the opening scenes of Juneau-Douglas High School's adaptation of the 104-year-old story, it's a drab, starkly lit expanse with monochromatic tones and undercurrents of dysfunction.

Movies: Where & when
Local movie times and locations.

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

Pipe thawing impetus for 'Copper Girl'
Sometime in the middle of lying under her Highlands home and trying to unfreeze her water pipes, high school geometry teacher Mary-Lou Gervais realized she had a good idea for the fourth Wearable Art show.

Local arts and entertainment news in brief.

Is being a writer worth the spoon-ring job?
Right before I moved to Portland, my landlord, Joe, wandered over to give me some advice about making it in the world Outside.

Student creations: From pop cans to the Queen of Hearts
For Juneau-Douglas High School geometry teacher Mary-Lou Gervais, the annual wearable art show is a rite of passage to spring.

Valentine's Day: What a drag
Shortly before Halloween, in the fall of 2002 in Ann Arbor, Mich., John Lamb found a short skirt left lying in his room and decided it was his. A few days later, when the witching hour approached and the ghouls came out to play, he stuffed himself into the skirt, slipped on a tube top and walked across town to read poetry in a bookstore.

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