Senior Night is about more than just five basketball players
I read with interest the article in the Feb. 27 edition of the Empire about JDHS's Senior Night. While I understand that his article was focused on the basketball team and the importance of the games for the Feb. 27-28 weekend, but the titled the article "Senior Night Gut Check" failed to mention a single word about any other senior, or group, who will be honored during the game on Saturday.

Support Juneau's underpaid teachers
What would you say if your boss told you to work 30 minutes more every day? What would you say if your boss also asked you to work an extra three days every year? You might ask how much more he was going to pay you to work an extra 100-plus hours, right?

Schools to consolidate language programs
Choosing to take Russian or Japanese language classes will become tantamount to choosing which high school to attend.

School Board demands more budget scrutiny
The Juneau School Board did not take action on the first reading of the school district's proposed budget for the 2009-2010 fiscal year Tuesday, instead demanding more information to scrutinize district programs, positions and their justifications.

Elton's seat gaining interest
A list of candidates who should represent Juneau in the Alaska Senate is solidifying, with Rep. Beth Kerttula, D-Juneau, looking to be the popular nominee.

Sen. Kim Elton resigns for Interior post
Sen. Kim Elton, who has represented Juneau in the Senate, House and Assembly for nearly two decades, has accepted a position in the administration of President Barack Obama. The 60-year-old legislator will now be dealing with Alaska issues in the Department of Interior.

State official lays out in-state gas plan
A state official charged with helping develop a small diameter natural gas pipeline from the North Slope to Cook Inlet said Tuesday the so-called bullet line could cost about $4 billion and bring gas to Alaska homes and businesses as early as 2015.

Behind the Douglas wall of skis
For Pat Harmon, bigger is better. His wall of skis on North Douglas highway is certainly no exception.

Photo: Sweating out a save
Good Hardware goalie Jodie Pessolano, right, pins Bleu Chunks' Brant Oliphant's shot attempt to the ice with the corner of her leg pad Sunday at Treadwell Ice Arena. Bleu Chunks went on to win the Juneau Adult Hockey Association Men's Tier B contest 6-0. Pessolano picked up 13 saves in Good Hardware's losing effort.

Police investigate armed robbery at Fred Meyer
The Juneau Police Department is searching for a man who allegedly robbed a Fred Meyer employee in the store's parking lot late Sunday evening.

Kerttula among Dems seeking Senate seat
Rep. Beth Kerttula heads a list of prominent Democrats in Juneau who are seeking appointment to the Alaska Senate seat vacated by Sen. Kim Elton, who has taken a job with the Obama administration.

Photo: City night lights
In a time exposure, the headlights of a city bus snake along Marine Way Tuesday evening. Today's forecast sees areas of fog in the morning, decreasing clouds and highs around 33 degrees.

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials and state police reported:

Photos: Commemorating success
Juneau Police Officer Jason Van Sickle shakes hands with David Rago of Auke Bay Elementary as students collect their Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) Program diplomas at Centennial Hall Monday evening. About 300 elementarystudents from area schools graduated from the nine-week course taught by Officers Van Sickle and Blain Hatch.

Photo: Vantage point
A mountain goat rests in the sun under a blooming willow tree Sunday as it watches over Mendenhall Lake.

Around Town
Today, March 4

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials and state police reported:

Around Town
Today, March 3

John Albert Hinchman Sr.
Former Hoonah resident John Albert Hinchman Sr., died Feb. 25, 2009, at the Life Care Center of Skagit Valley in Sedro-Woolley, Wash. He was 79.

Jim Willie Marks
Juneau resident Jim Willie Marks died Feb. 28, 2009, in Juneau. He was 67.

Samuel Patrick Sanders
Former longtime Juneau resident Samuel Patrick Sanders died Feb. 14, 2009, in Reno, Nev. He was 61.

Outside editorial: Move to protect nation's workers could instead cost more jobs
The economic stimulus package signed into law last week by President Obama contains a provision antithetical to innovation and domestic prosperity. That provision makes it even harder - some say impossible - for companies that receive government bailout money to hire foreign employees for specialized work.

Colberg's resignation unfortunate for Alaska
Last month, a very unfortunate thing happened in Alaska, one that reflects turbulent times and one that merits reflection.

My Turn: Kill House Bill 9, not other humans
Besides political posturing, what would lead any legislator to sponsor a bill reinstating the death penalty in Alaska? Reps. Mike Chenault and Jay Ramras have put forward a bill to do just that.

Outside editorial: Banking fear
Nationalization is not a concept that many Americans find appealing, which may explain why the government's attempts to clean up the mess in the financial sector seem to be generating fear rather than confidence. What is going on looks like a creep toward government control and even ownership of banks.

We can't forget the past
Even as President Obama urges the country to "look forward" to the huge tasks he has laid out in his first budget, the excesses of the departed Bush administration continue to intrude.

United States must end the war it gave Mexico
Early in the last century, near the end of his 34 bloody years in power, the aging Mexican strongman Porfirio Diaz mused that his country's great misfortune was to be located "so far from God and so near the United States."

Proposed system would decide who runs the world
With the American superpower trapped between two wars abroad and economic crisis at home, the time could be ripe for a new force to assume the mantle of global leadership.

Cowdery asks for sentencing leniency
ANCHORAGE - A former Alaska state senator is asking a federal judge for leniency.

Ellis lobbies for bill on YouTube
JUNEAU - Alaska's Senate Majority Leader is lobbying for a bill creating postsecondary scholarships on the Internet Web site YouTube.

UAF supercomputer called Pingo
FAIRBANKS - The University of Alaska Fairbanks has scheduled a dedication ceremony for its newest supercomputer.

Anchorage breaks ground for new library
ANCHORAGE - Construction of a new library in Anchorage's Mountain View neighborhood is under way.

Troopers investigate Copper Center death
ANCHORAGE - Alaska State Troopers are investigating the death of a 65-year-old Copper Center woman who died when she was hit by a pickup driven by her husband.

Anchorage school flag flew on shuttle
ANCHORAGE - A flag that flew on a space shuttle mission has a new home at West Anchorage High School.

February extra snowy in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS - Fairbanks just had the snowiest February since 1996.

Brog to speak at 'A Night To Honor Israel'
JUNEAU - The Juneau Christian Center will host "A Night to Honor Israel," a tribute to the nation of Israel and the Jewish people of the world, at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 3. The event's purpose is to promote esteem and understanding between Christians and Jews and emphasize the things each hold in common as believers in God. David Brog, an author from Washington, D.C., will be the featured speaker.

Alaska dentist gets 5 years on tax fraud
ANCHORAGE - A 61-year-old Alaska dentist will serve five years in a federal prison for trying to avoid more than $575,000 in federal taxes, including taking a deduction for a Las Vegas house of prostitution as a business expense.

Organizers end Serum Run sled dog race
ANCHORAGE - Organizers of the Serum Run sled dog race are ending the contest early.

State contenders meet at KayHi
To hear her players tell it, Crimson Bears coach Lesslie Knight could freeze a Southeast cruise ship in its wake with a stomp and two-fingered whistle.

Boys ready for Kings' greeting ... again
The Crimson Bears and Kings can agree on one thing about tonight's opening game of their best-of-three 4A Southeast Conference Championship Series - nobody wants to start with a loss.

Tourists holding out for big deals, industry hopes
Those in the Alaska travel business will face a nail-biting year as they wait to see if - and even when - tourists will book their fares North.

UAS program connects with Kensington Mine
Students who graduate from the University of Alaska Southeast's power technology diesel program with an emphasis in heavy-duty diesel will be at the top of the hiring list for the Kensington gold mine, according to a new agreement between the mine company and the university.

Mat-Su Mayor Curt Menard dies
JUNEAU - The mayor of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough died of cancer Tuesday morning at a hospital just outside Wasilla, borough spokeswoman Patty Sullivan said. Curt Menard was 64.

Court split on convict's right to test DNA
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court's conservative and liberal justices appeared divided Monday about giving convicts a constitutional right to test DNA evidence, which for 232 people has meant exoneration years after they were found guilty.

Mother and her teen arrested after fight at Bartlett High School
ANCHORAGE - A 41-year-old mother and her teenage daughter are charged with assault after a feud involving students at an Anchorage high school turned into a brawl.

State operating budget before House Finance
JUNEAU - The House Finance Committee on Monday began consideration of a nearly $9.7 billion state operating budget with public hearings scheduled for today and Wednesday.

Japanese tourists keep Talkeetna man flying
FAIRBANKS - Unlike Alaska snowbirds who flock south during the winter months, Eric Denkewalter heads north from Talkeetna to Fairbanks, piloting a Piper Chieftain for a long winter stay.

Soldotna pull-tab clerk pleads guilty to theft
The 32-year-old Soldotna woman accused a year ago of stealing as much as $53,000 from River City Pull Tabs reached a settlement agreement with the state Monday.

Prison report warns about lax rehab funding
JUNEAU - Even as the state of Alaska prepares to break ground on a 1,500-bed, medium-security prison, a newly released national study says investments should be in rehabilitating prisoners instead of locking them up.

Photo: Bear in ice
Qi Feng An, left, and Chun He Zhang, both of Harbin, China, guide a bear carved from ice into place during the multi-block competition of the BP World Ice Art Championships on Monday afternoon, March 2, 2009, in Fairbanks, Alaska. Qi Feng An won the World Ice Art Championships' Artist's and People's Choice awards in 2004, and he also won second place in the single-block competition in 2005. Competition for this year ends Thursday night with the awards ceremony Friday.

Murkowski urges state to resolve gas pipeline issues or risk losing market
Alaska officals had better act to bring people together on a large natural gas pipeline or risk losing the U.S. gas markets to shale gas producers and liquefied natural gas importers, U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski warned state lawmakers in her annual message to the Legislature in Juneau Feb. 19.

Mother implicated in infant's disappearance
ANCHORAGE - A woman who reported her baby missing is accused of orchestrating the disappearance, which triggered Alaska's first fully initiated Amber Alert.

Photo: Bones to pick
Red salmon carcasses pile up in the Kenai River behind an angler cleaning his catch several summers ago. Biologists are blaming the fish waste for conflicts between people and bears in the surrounding area. According to Bobbi Jo Skibo,Russian River interagency coordinator for the U.S. Forest Service in Moose Pass, state and federal agency managers who oversee the confluence area are considering asking anglers to clean their catch offsite starting this season.

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