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Thursday, March 9, 2006

Business Digest
Staff reports from local businesses

Stupid is as stupid does
I agree with Ron Glenn of Ketchikan's letter on March 3.

A road wouldn't just serve Juneau
Every time I read in the Empire a letter criticizing the road to Skagway, the thought comes to mind that people in Juneau think this road is just for them. For their information, those of us that don't live in Juneau will own part of that road also.

End sales tax on food for everyone
Since the senior citizen sales tax exemption is up for discussion, why not consider replacing it with one that is fair to all. End the exemption and replace it with an exemption on food for everyone - not prepared, restaurant or take-out food, but food found in the grocery store. This would be fair to all and would cost about as much as the current senior citizen exemption. Also, the cost would not increase over time, except as Juneau's population does.

Make our neighbors feel welcome, safe
While attending the last home stand of the Juneau-Douglas High School boy's basketball team against Ketchikan (our Southeast neighbor, not rival) Feb. 24 and 25, I was both appalled and disappointed.

Teachers deserve their new contract
I am writing about the teachers' new approved contract. Teachers and school staff deserve the increase.

Fast ferry issue began with Knowles
I'd like to respond to Rob Glenn's letter ("Ferry system was set up to fail.")

More than pay should steer officers
After the police recruitment article in the Empire on Feb. 27, I felt compelled to write a letter to the editor.

Kensington Mine waste creates risks
While the jobs and business associated with the development of the Kensington Mine may be appealing...

Statute doesn't justify killing
The Board of Game is meeting March 10-20 in Fairbanks to consider adopting some controversial proposals that allow for increased aerial wolf killings (targeting an 80 percent reduction in wolves), classifying black and brown bears as fur-bearers to allow them to be trapped and their fur sold, allowing the harvesting of both female and young bears and allowing the use of airplanes and snow machines to pursue the wolves and bears.

The truth about Alaska's swift boats
How amazing is it to hear somebody blame the Murkowski administration for spending $66 million for fast ferries, despite known failure of those kinds of boats in British Columbia?

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

Teen walks as prosecutor decides whether to appeal
Craig teenager Rachelle Waterman walked out of Lemon Creek Correctional Center on Wednesday, free on bail the morning after Superior Court Judge Patricia Collins tossed out an indictment charging her with murder and conspiracy in the 2004 killing of her mother.

Around Town
Around town is a listing of nonprofit local events

City lands manager to retire
After nearly 33 years of serving Juneau, Lands and Resources Manager Steve Gilbertson has decided to step down and enjoy the area he helped build.

Christian school to shut down
After 26 years of religious and academic instruction, Juneau Christian School will close its doors at the end of this school year, church officials say.

Task force calls for public comment on future of tourism
While the Juneau Assembly reviews four future tourism scenarios, what it really needs are recommendations about how to cause or prevent those competing visions, some city officials say.

School Board OKs staff contract
The School Board voted unanimously to approve a contract agreement with the Juneau Educational Support Staff union at its regular meeting Tuesday.

Women have their day
As a teenager in Australia in the 1980s, postdoctoral research fellow Liz Conor and her friends were wrapped up in the new-wave fashions sweeping the planet.

School Board may cut jobs designed to curb dropout rate
The Juneau School Board may be forced to cut several positions aimed at curbing the dropout rate.

Images from another time: Flying low, 1980s
The Canadian Forces Snowbirds fly over Gastineau Channel during a performance in the mid 1980s. The acrobatic team some consider the best in the world has performed several times in Juneau.

Around Town
Around town is a listing of nonprofit local events

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

Judge tosses out indictment
Rachelle Waterman's father expected to get her out of jail this morning after a Juneau judge Tuesday dismissed the indictment charging the 17-year-old Craig girl with murder and conspiracy in the 2004 slaying of her mother, Lauri Waterman.

Photo: Shooting the breeze
Mary Taug a client at the Bridge Adult Day Center talks about how her sons Oly and Ron are such good fishermen while Heather Sincic works on her hair in the salon.

Neighbors Digest
Staff reports from the residents of Juneau

Neighbors mailbox
You've got thanks

Shortys celebrate 50th anniversary
Juneau residents Elizabeth and John Shorty Jr. will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary from 7 to 10 p.m., March 10 at the Baranof Hotel.

Photo: Under the blue
An out-of-town visitor reaches into a melted-out area to pull out a piece of garbage Feb. 16 from the Mendenhall Glacier.

This I Believe: Saying no offers freedom
I believe in just saying no. One of my earliest applications of this principle was when my granddaddy gave me a silver dollar for my sixth birthday.

Daniel G. Moreno Sr.
Juneau and Sitka resident Daniel G. Moreno Sr., 78, died March 4, 2006, at Bartlett Memorial Hospital, with his family nearby.

Joel Christian Grant
Juneau resident Joel Christian Grant, 24, died Feb. 27, 2006, in Seattle.

Dawn Michelle Davis
Juneau resident Dawn Michelle Davis, 43, died March 3, 2006, in her home.

Charles Johnson Jr.
Kake resident Charles "Topsy" Skon Johnson Jr., 75, died March 4, 2006, at Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital in Sitka.

Alaska editorial: Lawmakers should keep future in mind while crafting budget
Oil and gas may be dominating the day in Juneau, but in reality the Legislature doesn't have to approve any legislation whatsoever on the topic.

My turn: Of highway lies and hatchet men
Gov. Murkowski came to Haines and Skagway several weeks ago with his staff via the ferry because he needed quiet time to get work done, according to reports.

My turn: Marine highway system is sinking in a sea of red ink
Whether or not you support the road, by now it should be painfully obvious that the Alaska Marine Highway System is sinking in red ink.

My turn: Celebrate International Women's Day
Today is International Women's Day, a day to celebrate the economic, social and political achievements of women.

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

Bears' JV takes two at Angoon
The Juneau-Douglas High School boys basketball junior varsity team completed its season last week with two wins at Class 2A Angoon.

JDHS grad Chad Bentz reassigned by White Sox
Juneau-Douglas High School graduate Chad Bentz was reassigned by the Chicago White Sox on Tuesday.

Alaskan Open swings through Arizona
For the 20th straight year, members of the Juneau Golf Club competed in the Alaskan Open.

JDHS athletes win at Arctic Winter Games
The Team Alaska snowshoeing squad, mostly comprising Juneau-Douglas High School students, cleaned up in the first two days of competition at the Arctic Winter Games.

Two silver ulus for Juneau's Ord
Juneau Ski Club member Nathan Ord helped Team Alaska dominate the slalom and giant slalom events at the Arctic Winter Games.

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.

Village of Takotna gives mushers a nice break in race
The dog teams leading the Iditarod spent just a few minutes at this hillside village on Wednesday, but many mushers stayed to recuperate at one of the sled dog race's most hospitable checkpoints.

State switches health insurance group
Premera Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alaska will replace Aetna as the state's health care administrator for employees and retirees.

Alaska Digest
Staff reports from around the state

Candidates weigh in on governor's tax proposal
If Gov. Frank Murkowski is successful in pushing through a new production tax and closing a fiscal deal for a North Slope natural gas pipeline, it may be a new governor who has to deal with the consequences.

This Day in History
In Alaska, the nation, and the world

State surplus to beat projections
The department raised its predictions on oil prices for the next three years in its regular spring forecast released Tuesday, a month earlier than usual. The announcement included key predictions on oil prices and production. A complete forecast is due in April.

Alaska Digest
Staff reports from around the state

AK officials worry about federal food safety law
Alaska officials said this week they are worried that a U.S. House of Representatives-approved bill could undermine the state's ability to regulate food safety.

Gov.: Lawmakers can see contract after passing tax
Gov. Frank Murkowski said Wednesday the Alaska Legislature should approve a new oil tax system before getting a peek at the natural gas pipeline contract, which he claims is nearly finished.

Senate seeks to revive Arctic drilling
The Senate will drop President Bush's proposals for new tax cuts and politically painful cuts to Medicare and instead revisit the battle over allowing oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as it takes up its budget plan for next year.

State wants to reduce ferry subsidy
Alaska's state-run ferries need a heftier chunk of state dollars than their counterparts in Washington state and British Columbia, but that margin could decline in the future, the state's ferry chief told legislators Tuesday.

briefly
news of local entertainment events

Making 'Hair' fuller
Last year, artistic director PJ Paparelli thought about making a few changes for Perseverance Theatre's presentation of "Hair" and put in a call to James Rado, the co-writer of the original script.

Shall we dance?
Ballroom dance teachers Pat Belec and Frank Bergstrom are pleased to see the success of the ABC program "Dancing With the Stars."

Legends from the Hawaiian Islands
In Honolulu, storyteller Alton Chung learned early there are some things you simply do not do.

Ocean cinema
The Alaska Oceans Program will bring the Alaska Ocean Film Festival 2006 to Juneau for two showings at the Backroom at the Silverbow, 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, March 10 and 11.

Cinema Guide
what's playing at the box office

what's happening
news of local enterainment events

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