State and local briefly

Posted: Tuesday, February 22, 2000

Monday crash victims recovering

JUNEAU - A Juneau man who was extricated from his van following a head-on crash Monday morning is in satisfactory condition today in a Seattle hospital with a broken leg and arm, a Harborview Medical Center spokesman said.

The man, identified by Harborview as Dale Gosnell, 39, was flown to Seattle from Bartlett Regional Hospital on Monday afternoon. He had been freed from the van by Capital City Fire and Rescue personnel with a ``jaws of life'' tool.

A woman, 39, who was driving a pickup that collided with Gosnell's van about 7:45 a.m. on North Douglas Highway, was treated and released from Bartlett on Monday, said day supervisor Charlotte Mielke. A passenger in the van, a 38-year-old man, also was treated and released, she said.

The Empire on Monday incorrectly reported the directions of the vehicles. The pickup was heading toward the Douglas Bridge, and the van was outbound.

Seasonal sales tax off Haines ballot

HAINES - A seasonal sales tax targeting summer visitors to Haines won't appear on a special spring election ballot.

The Haines Borough Assembly voted last week to keep a proposal to levy a one-percent general sales tax from April 1 to Sept. 30 starting in 2001 off the ballot. The borough currently has a 1 percent sales tax year-round.

Measure supporter Lucy Harrell said she was disappointed there won't be a vote on the proposal. ``I don't see any rationale for not letting the voters choose on this,'' Harrell told the Chilkat Valley News. ``Taxes are ridiculously low here, and this would spread the impact around to the most people when more money is in town, and make it easier on local people.''

But opponent Tim June said the tax would be too much of a burden to low-income people.

Last year, voters in the Haines Borough imposed a 4 percent sales tax on the shore tours sold to cruise ship passengers, but turned down a general sales tax increase.

Bill boosts part-time teachers' retirement

JUNEAU - A bill giving part-time teachers retirement credit in proportion to the actual days they work was approved by the state House on Monday.

Rep. Con Bunde, an Anchorage Republican, said teachers who work more than 50 percent of the time, but less than full time, receive only one-half service credit in the teachers retirement system. Bunde said teachers in this group contribute more retirement dollars than they're receiving in benefits.

House Bill 236 gives retirement credit that matches the percentage of the amount that part-time teachers work.

Bunde said the measure might help school districts attract part-time teachers when they face teacher shortages. Legislators approved the bill 34-2 and it now moves to the Senate for consideration.

Measure limits debt collection

JUNEAU - The Senate passed a bill Monday to prevent creditors from seizing a partnership interest in payment of a debt.

The measure, which has already passed the House 36-0, was approved 18-0. It now goes to Gov. Tony Knowles for his signature.

Rep. Norm Rokeberg, an Anchorage Republican, backed the measure sponsored by the House Judiciary Committee after a Connecticut court allowed a creditor to foreclose on an interest in a limited partnership.

Rokeberg contends such judgments make the creditor a limited partner in the partnership, a situation that could endanger the investments of other partners who had nothing to do with the debt.

The bill limits creditors to receiving the income the debtor would be entitled to from the partnership or membership.

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