Friday, March 5, 2004

Big oil incomes don't help people
Over at the State Library I read an interesting article in The Economist (Dec. 6, 2003), about oil money in Chad, called "Can Oil Ever Help the Poor?"

Conservatives are not blind
POMV makes permanent fund temporary

Income tax best for working families
This state has thrown away billions of dollars after Rep. Terry Gardner proposed eliminating Alaska's income tax and the Legislature agreed. The state income tax was easy to figure because it was a percentage of the federal income tax.

Empire coverage of artist's past excessive
This is in response to the Feb. 26 article regarding local artist Mark Horn's surrendering three pieces of art containing eagle feathers that were featured in an exhibit at the Juneau Arts and Humanities Council (JAHC).

Costco sells wild salmon
I wish to tip my hat to Costco and let other readers know they are selling packs of frozen salmon burgers from Trident Seafoods that proclaim themselves as "ocean caught, wild salmon." My wife and I find this new wild salmon treat to be quite delicious. As long as Costco sells it, we'll be buying it.

POMV makes permanent fund temporary
The Permanent Fund Corporation proposes to spend over a million dollars to "educate" us about their proposed POMV (Percent of Market Value) approach. The proposal would allow "up to" 5 percent of the book value of the Permanent Fund on one predetermined day, calculated as a five-year average, to be spent for some combination of dividends and other expenditures, such as state government.

Unified Defense 2004 proved to be a success
Last week, Unified Defense 2004 was held in the City and Borough of Juneau, as well as many other locations around the country. A national-level exercise hosted by U.S. Northern Command headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., it was designed to train participants on homeland security and homeland defense processes.

Parents responsible for racism
I am quite disturbed about the solution for the racism noted in our local high school of requiring action by the baby sitters (teachers) to solve this very serious problem. Unfortunately it appears no one wants to address the primary cause of racism, which is parents. This problem starts in your homes, not in the school.

Make big box stores prove their worth
As nice as a big box would seem, what are the economic impacts of a big box store? When a big box opens a store they expect to do $3.5 million in sales monthly, over $40 million a year. How is our community going to support this?

It's time for Tenakee murder truth
Our little community of Tenakee Springs will soon mark the first anniversary of the brutal murder of Maggie Wiggins. There has never been an arrest in the case and her killer is still free - tormented by guilt living in constant anxiety, we may certainly hope - but free.

Travel: Thailand - The 'Land of Smiles'
Our next stop after Tokyo was Bangkok, and we arrived there in the middle of the night. My girlfriend and I planned on spending only two days in that city before heading on to Cambodia, so we were eager to begin exploring.

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

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

FYI
Births, judgments and other legal matters.

Photo: Hard at work
Leonard R. Johnson digs a hole to install a new mailbox for a friend, as it snows Wednesday along North Douglas Highway.

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

School cuts spur parents to become lobbyists for funds
Dead silence engulfed the Matanuska-Susitna School Board's Feb. 3 meeting when the district's chief administrator laid out the spending cuts, Wasilla parent Anne Kilkenny said.

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

Budget may force Bartlett to drop mental health unit from remodel
The latest construction plans for Bartlett Regional Hospital may not include a mental health unit at a time when the hospital is seeing an increased number of those patients, hospital Administrator Bob Valliant said.

Correction
Due to a reporter's error, a story in Wednesday's Empire listed the incorrect number of visitors to Juneau in 2003. A total of 93,500 travelers arrived in Juneau via ferry or air travel, and 776,991 visited Juneau on cruise ships.

Program rewards excellence on high school diplomas
A new program at Juneau-Douglas High School that recognizes academic and extracurricular excellence could lead to more students taking advanced courses and more of such courses being offered, students say.

Juneau residents learn how police department works
Police work isn't like you see on television. Reggie Cruz said his Tuesday nights this year have taught him that in Juneau "it's way different."

Neighbors Digest
Community news in brief.

Photo: A picture-perfect day
The calm waters of Auke Bay mirror the snow-capped peaks and clear blue sky above, in this view from the state ferry Aurora on Friday afternoon, Feb. 27, as it arrived in Juneau from points north.

Teacher Talk: We need to present a united front against racism, bias
I have been a teacher at Juneau-Douglas High School for seven years, and most days I am just a history teacher. These days, in light of the recent racial incidents that have surfaced in our building, I have become a Native teacher.

Photo: New wheels
The Salvation Army received the gift of a 15-passenger van from Princess Cruises & Tours on March 2. Pictured from left: Cathy Muñoz, Salvation Army director; Nila and Larry Frankhauser, both majors in the Salvation Army; and Kirby Day, director of shore operations with Princess Cruises & Tours.

Ruby Linda deLuna
Juneau resident Ruby Linda deLuna, 56, died March 1, 2004, in Juneau. She was born July 13, 1947, in Juneau. She lived in Juneau from 1947 to 1952, and returned in 1965, living here until her death.

My Turn: A vote against school is for crowding
As someone who has worked daily in the Marie Drake building for more than a decade, I want the public to understand the practical realities of voting to reconsider a second high school. Here's what your vote endorses.

Letting dams off the hook hurts Alaskans
Supporting troll fishermen around here is about as safe as siding with God and cheap electricity in Idaho. Living in Alaska puts me on the right side of that divide.

Spikers remain perfect at AWG
Team Alaska's junior male and junior female volleyball teams won two matches each on Thursday to conclude round-robin pool play with perfect 5-0 records at the Arctic Winter Games in Fort McMurray, Alberta.

Brandner, Yankee, Harmon win events
Juneau Ski Club members Kristen Brandner, Nick Yankee and Mark Harmon all posted victories last weekend as the Alyeska Cup State Alpine Skiing Championships and Junior Olympic Qualifier Series Ski Races wrapped up at Alyeska Resort in Girdwood.

Cavs crush Hawks
On his bobblehead night, LeBron James again left everyone shaking their heads. "He just amazes me," Cleveland Cavaliers coach Paul Silas said.

Mushers prepare to hit the trail
When the Iditarod gets under way this weekend, fans of the 1,100-mile mile race across Alaska will get a look at a record number of the remarkable athletes. Oh, and the humans might also get some attention.

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.

Full-court life
From the start, Alida Bus sank her teeth into high school activities. And that's more than just a figure of speech for Bus, a Juneau-Douglas High School senior who this weekend - along with four teammates - will be playing the last home basketball games of her career.

Short-handed Juneau boys head to Kayhi
The Juneau-Douglas High School boys basketball team already was facing a tough task as it prepared for this weekend's two regular-season-ending Region V-Class 4A games in Ketchikan.

Undefeated region season on the line
The Juneau girls basketball team will be playing with practice and pride on their minds as they face the Ketchikan Kings this weekend.

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

Brooks improves footwork in run for Iditarod title
Ramy Brooks has been counting every second as he tries to take the final step into the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race winner's circle. Brooks has long been a spectacle at the checkpoints of long-distance races as he maniacally but methodically beds down his dogs, tends to their injuries and prepares a meal.

ASBN state prep basketball poll
The Alaska Sports Broadcasting Network high school basketball poll for the week ending Feb. 28.

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 an NBA bargain
A Cleveland Cavaliers game-day practice was ending earlier this month in Detroit, and Jeff McInnis was looking for a little action from former Juneau-Douglas High School star Carlos Boozer.

Crimson Bears seniors
Five Juneau players will take the home court this weekend for the final time in their careers

Fighters claim three title belts
Three local pugilists earned Juneau Fight Club titles during the Fight Night Boxing show held Friday at Centennial Hall.

Gymnasts claim a bronze ulu
Two local gymnasts won bronze late Tuesday night, as they helped the Team Alaska junior female gymnastics squad take third place in the team gymnastics event at the Arctic Winter Games in Fort McMurray, Alberta.

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

Dissident shareholders to get day in court
Hoonah resident Karl Greenewald Jr. said he is looking forward to his day before the state's highest court. That will be Tuesday in the Dimond Courthouse, where the Alaska Supreme Court will hear arguments in his appeal of a dispute that some Huna Totem Corp. shareholders have been living with for seven years.

State regulators investigate 1,600-gallon spill at Kuparuk oil field
About 1,600 gallons of a petroleum product called naphtha spilled out of split tubing at the Kuparuk oil field on the North Slope. State environmental regulators are investigating the spill, which was discovered Saturday at a plant that refines crude oil into diesel fuel used to run trucks and power generators at Kuparuk. Naphtha is a byproduct of the refining process.

House OKs bill letting voters fill U.S. Senate vacancies
The House approved a measure Thursday that would let voters, rather than the governor, choose the replacement when there's a vacancy in the U.S. Senate.

Small ships fear pollution controls
Small cruise ship companies operating in Alaska waters are looking for an exemption from the state's wastewater pollution law, saying expensive upgrades could put them out of business.

Plan may prevent layoffs at schools
A plan suddenly emerged from Senate Republicans on Thursday to add nearly $88 million to Alaska's education system and stave off extensive teacher layoffs and other cuts to local schools. But the bill, which was rushed out of Senate Finance Committee on the same day, had enough strings attached to give pause to minority Democrats hungry for more school funding increases.

Alaska Native leaders plan international summit
Alaska Native leaders are planning an international summit this summer to exchange information about developing the economies of rural and indigenous communities. Organizers say representatives from cities, villages and development organizations in Asia and South America are expected to participate.

Ferry jobs may move by summer
Alaska Marine Highway System employees in Juneau worry they'll have to look for new jobs or move to Ketchikan as early as this summer, though no one has said just why it makes sense to relocate the ferry system's administration.

Photo: Fairweather glimpse
The new Alaska Marine Highway high-speed ferry Fairweather motors through Long Island Sound Wednesday morning after leaving Derecktor Shipyards in Bridgeport, Conn., traveling 22 knots. It will go through the Panama Canal before arriving in Juneau on March 24, depending on weather.

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

Salmon tax bill meets opposition from harvesters
Salmon fishermen are opposing a bill that would allow for an increase in the taxes they pay to support regional hatcheries. Senate Bill 322 would allow regional hatchery associations to increase the salmon enhancement tax to up to 30 percent. Currently fishermen pay up to 3 percent, and each regional hatchery association sets its own assessment.

Historic Ketchikan bar closes
The stools at the Alaska Bar downtown are vacant but the faint smell of cigarettes and beer lingers inside. After 20 years in the bar business, owner Mellanie Isner locked the front door for the last time Thursday.

Photo: Help for seniors
Gov. Frank Murkowski, right, signs the SeniorCare Bill into law as his spokesman, John Manly, watches during a press conference Thursday at the Juneau Senior Center.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Photo: Craig convention, 1950
This photograph shows, from left, Alaska Territorial Gov. Ernest Gruening with Ethelyn Jones and her husband, C.M. Jones, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Craig Convention on Nov. 15, 1950.

Wolf-control boundaries expand near McGrath
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is expanding the boundaries of a controversial aerial wolf-control program near McGrath. The decision Tuesday - two days after hunters killed the first wolves near the Interior village - widens the program area from about 1,750 square miles to 3,600 square miles.

Northwest Digest
News in brief from around the region.

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

Famous Quotes
Quotes from "As You Like It."

The buildup to the wedding scene...
Sir Rowland de Bois has died and his oldest son, Oliver, has possession of his estate. Oliver denies his brother, Orlando, education and property.

'As You Like It':
Theatre in the Rough co-director Katie Jensen has been acting for 28 years, and Jacques - the cynical, love-wary lord of William Shakespeare's comedy "As You Like It" - is the toughest role she's played. The play opens at 8 p.m. Friday, March 5 and runs through March 27.

Four selected for All Alaska exhibition
Four Juneau artists had work selected for inclusion in the 30th All Alaska Juried Art Exhibition, a biennial exhibition and the largest display of Alaska artists in the state. Guest juror Michael Rush, the director of the Palm Beach Institute of Contemporary Art, selected 96 works by 74 artists out of 910 works by 260 artists. The exhibition begins at the Anchorage Museum of History and Art, then tours the state.

When Doves Fly
As a young girl in Osaka, Japan, in the early 1970s, Kuniko Yamamoto's original ambition was to be a dancer. As she grew older, her dreams shifted to the theater - a place where she could combine three of her passions: movement, music and magic.

Briefly
Local arts and entertainment news in brief.

First Friday
A clock, students, seagrass and thriftiness among offerings for March's First Friday.

What's happening
Upcoming local arts and entertainment events.

Movies: Where & when
Movie times and titles at local theaters.

Symphony showcase breaks from tradition
The Juneau Symphony's annual showcase traditionally has been a venue for its players to break off into small ensembles of two, three and four musicians.

Thailand: the 'Land of Smiles'
Our next stop after Tokyo was Bangkok, and we arrived there in the middle of the night. My girlfriend and I planned on spending only two days in that city before heading on to Cambodia, so we were eager to begin exploring.

Thailand: the 'Land of Smiles'
Our next stop after Tokyo was Bangkok, and we arrived there in the middle of the night. My girlfriend and I planned on spending only two days in that city before heading on to Cambodia, so we were eager to begin exploring.

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