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Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Bullying the disabled is another school issue
Karen Quick's letter of March 3 was of interest to me. She rightly expressed how bullying and taunting of students with disabilities is every bit as ugly, hurtful and repugnant as racist incidents of recent notoriety.

Quit gouging tourists
I just finished reading your article. I have been to Juneau once and will return again this summer. I will be on a cruise and I have another angle that I don't think you covered. Our ship will be in port for a total of five hours. I don't know if this is a caused by Juneau or NCL, but it's not very much time for anyone on board that ship to experience (or spend money in) one of the great cities in the world - at least in my opinion.

Mills don't want Couverden timber
Having read the letter to the editor on Sunday, Feb. 29 by Owen Graham, Alaska Forest Association spokesperson, I immediately thought of the old adage - repeat the lie often enough and it becomes the truth. Mr. Graham states that "timber sales make money unless you charge the timber program with the excess cost of endless NEPA studies, appeals and lawsuits."

Speak out for justice
It has been a year since I last saw Maggie Wigen. She worked with me in the Rainbow Foods kitchen last March for one day. If only I had known it would be the last time I would work with her. I would have let her choose the music. I would have let her plan the menu and only make the things she wanted to cook. I would have washed all her dishes, and done all her cleaning. She could have spent the day doing only her favorite tasks. Baking bread, cutting vegetables, preparing salad dressings, making pizza. No matter how much I want to, I can't go back to that day, and I can't bring Maggie back.

It's no wonder that people don't vote
The Murkowski administration seems determined to convince us that the best government is bad government. The latest example is the governor and his commissioner of transportation telling us different stories about whether a decision has been made to move the ferry headquarters from Juneau to Ketchikan.

Policy Center promotes responsible mining
I would like to respond to a recent letter by Coeur Alaska which wrongfully describes the Mineral Policy Center as an "anti-mining" organization because of our stated concerns over Coeur's plan to cut costs at the proposed Kensington mine by discharging toxic mine waste directly into freshwater Slate Lake.

Leave Berners Bay alone
The renewal of the assault on Berners Bay, Juneau's backyard wilderness and wildlife-and-fisheries refuge, fans coals of resentment throughout northern Southeast Alaska. Senator Murkowski's reintroduction of a bill that would transfer this rich sanctuary to the state for development purposes is part and parcel of aggregating abominations.

Assembly OKs transfer of power from harbor bd.
The Juneau Assembly passed an ordinance Monday night giving the city's Personnel Department a say in the Docks and Harbors Department's hiring and firing in response to ongoing labor complaints.

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

Court hears appeal of talk-show host's trial
Tom Leykis' radio show hasn't been heard in Juneau since 1998, but the Los Angeles-based syndicated talk host's court case is back again. Leykis' free-speech rights were at the center of Tuesday's Alaska Supreme Court hearing of his network's appeal of damages awarded to a Juneau woman who claimed his on-air ridicule caused personal injury.

City leaders agree to solicit bids on second high school
The Juneau Assembly decided to solicit bids for a second high school Monday after much discussion about whether that would compromise the democratic process of a ballot initiative opposing construction.

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

City eyes sonar for underwater searches
City leaders told Gene Ralston Monday night he bought himself "a first-class ticket to heaven" and that they are impressed with the equipment he used to recover a body.

Panel proposes changes in leash law
The Dog Task Force recommended banning five areas to dogs, but increasing to 10 the number of areas where owners can allow their dogs to run off-leash. The recommendations came after a nearly four-hour special meeting Tuesday, in which task force members debated the rights of dog owners and those interested in the preservation of wildlife.

Morris purchases Capital City Weekly
Morris Communications, the parent company of the Juneau Empire, has purchased Capital City Weekly and a monthly boating publication from Renda and David Heimbigner of Juneau. The sale, effective March 3, marked the end of a 24-year run for Renda Heimbigner, who also served as publisher of the weekly.

Juneau officials blast relocation of ferry system
Juneau lawmakers and city officials sent Gov. Frank Murkowski and the state Department of Transportation a swift rebuke Monday, following the announcement that state ferry system administrative offices will move to Ketchikan.

Photo: Kingly catch
Oly Nelson shows off a large brown king crab in the hold of his boat, the Christian. Nelson and his crew brought in about 700 crab they delivered to Taku Fisheries on Monday.

Governor moves ferry offices out of Juneau
Transportation Commissioner Mike Barton announced Monday that Gov. Frank Murkowski has approved moving the Alaska Marine Highway System and about 40 Juneau jobs to Ketchikan. The ferry system's administrative offices will move to the largely vacant Ketchikan Pulp Co. administration building near Ward Cove, a four-mile drive from the ferry system's maintenance yard.

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

PBS cartoon aardvark comes to Riverbend
Arthur the Aardvark, a popular figure in children's literature since 1977 and the star of his own PBS program, will appear at KTOO's Ready to Learn workshop, at 7 tonight at Riverbend School.

Correction
An Empire story on Tuesday incorrectly characterized the nature of an ordinance approved by the Juneau Assembly on Monday night. The story should have stated that the harbors department continues to be in charge of hiring and firing decisions but is required by the new ordinance to obtain assistance from the Personnel Department when making these decisions.

Photo: Waiting out the squall
Gulls line up on the cruise ship dock next to the fishermen's memorial downtown, tucking their beaks into their feathers to stay cozy during a rain squall Monday.

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

Court reviews Huna Totem election
The Huna Totem Corporation's dominant directors effectively "placed their hands over the ballot box" to keep from being recalled in 1999, an attorney for dissident shareholders told the Alaska Supreme Court in Juneau Tuesday.

... for help with Yan Waat Latin i caregiver workshop
Central Council of Tlingit & Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska's Elderly Services program of the Tribal Family & Youth Services Department would like to thank the local organizations and community members who contributed to the "Yan Waat Latin i" (Elders Watch) Caregiver Training workshop held on Feb. 26 at the ANB Hall.

... for supporting our fund-raiser
On behalf of the Alaska Youth Choir, I would like to thank all of the Juneau businesses and residents who supported our children in the 2003-2004 AYC fund-raising raffle.

... from The Glory Hole
On behalf of the patrons at The Glory Hole, I would like thank several groups and businesses for their recent contributions to Juneau's emergency shelter and soup kitchen.

Pets of the week
Pets available for local adoption.

Neighbors Digest
Community news in brief.

Southeast Sagas: Alaska goes to St. Louis - 1904
The Louisiana Purchase Exposition of 1904 was organized to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Thomas Jefferson's Louisiana Purchase. By all contemporary accounts, it was the most beautiful, educational and thrilling of all the international exhibitions presented to that date. The world was at peace and developments in technology promised an easier future for mankind. Sixty-two nations and 43 states and territories displayed their treasures and cultures to demonstrate humanity's advancements since the Louisiana Purchase.

French Lessons: French school dress, other mild shocks
If schools are a window into a community, Heather's experience at the Lycée (high school) Sainte-Agnes is a virtual sliding glass door into French culture, teen and otherwise. By the time Shane and I arrived in Angers, my husband had met with the director to determine Heather's course schedule and she had been attending classes for three weeks. Through necessity, she adapted to a degree of independence that quickly became a preference. Upon my arrival, eager to catch up, I quizzed her about her school life. She didn't disappoint.

Ethel Rose Naish
Carol Lee Morris Former Juneau resident Ethel Rose (Bayers) Naish, 90, died Feb. 26, 2004, at Riverside Healthcare in Missoula, Mont.

Beverly Christensen
Beverly Ruth Christensen died Mar. 5, 2004. She was born June 29, 1932. Wife of Albert L. Christensen, she was mother to Don Fowler of Pendleton, Ore., Steve Allen and Ray Allen of Portland, and Carl Christensen and Russell Christensen of Juneau.

Carol Lee Morris
Juneau resident Carol Lee Morris, 49, died March 7, 2004, of a heart attack.

My Turn: Let's bring back public hearings
Public hearings, and your right to tell the government what you think, are becoming things of the past in Juneau. So is your right to hear what other citizens think.

Alaska editorials
Editorials from Alaska newspapers.

My Turn: Marine highway move sensible
I concur that the discussion paper prepared by Pacific Marine Technical Services on moving the headquarters of the Alaska Marine Highway System could have been made public in a more timely manner. I regret that because of logistical reasons it was held up for two weeks and, as a consequence, fueled unnecessary suspicion that there was something to hide. There isn't.

Secret move deserved some public scrutiny
If you were surprised by Tuesday's headlines announcing Gov. Frank Murkowski's decision to move the Alaska Marine Highway System from Juneau to Ketchikan, you weren't alone. Monday afternoon's announcement more than caught the ferry system's employees - and Juneau residents - off guard.

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.

Ames leads Skagway girls over Angoon
A summary of high school basketball from around the region.

Cavs beat Hawks, move to eighth place in Eastern Conference
LeBron James slumped in a chair in front of his locker, wearing only a pair of boxer shorts and a run-down expression. James had 34 points - his 10th game this season with more than 30 - and made three free throws in the final minute to help the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Hawks 108-102 Monday night.

Photo: Team Alaska snowshoers
The Juneau representatives of the Team Alaska snowshoe squad for the Arctic Winter Games pose before their flight to Fort McMurray, Alberta on Feb. 27.

Region V-Class 3A tourney opens today in Sitka
The Metlakatla boys and Petersburg girls are the teams to beat heading into this year's Region V-Class 3A basketball tournament, which starts today at Mount Edgecumbe High School in Sitka.

Leaders play hopscotch
Norwegian Kjetil Backen took the lead Tuesday in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, but said that was not his intention. Good thing, too. He held it for less than three hours before Mitch Seavey of Seward stole it away, although later on Tuesday Backen had retaken the lead leaving McGrath, 48 miles up the trail.

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.

Region V standings
Region V basketball standings through games of March 6.

Swimming with pool sharks
Pool got a bad rap in the musical "The Music Man." There was no trouble with pool this weekend in the Juneau Billiards Association's Red Hook Ale-Capital City Classic pool tournament at the Viking Lounge, as the top players from Southeast Alaska, and even a couple of Lower 48 sharks, met in the top local tourney.

Familiar faces at front of Iditarod
More than 200 hundred miles into the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, Bill Cotter gave his team a long rest Monday while he mulled over the nasty bump on his forehead.

Korean market opens to pinks
Alaska pink salmon is set to become a staple in South Korean military rations and school lunches, as an Anchorage businessman prepares to introduce the country to the fish. Kenneth Zong, president of Alaska Marine Seafood Inc., has signed a five-year contract with the Lotte Group, South Korea's fourth-largest conglomerate.

Board backs bear control
The Alaska Board of Game has adopted a statewide policy allowing everything from trapping and sterilization to baiting and land-and-shoot hunting of black and brown bears in areas deemed necessary.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Labor negotiations heat up at state capitol
About 100 state employees representing Alaska unions rallied in front of the Capitol Tuesday for better pay and health benefits. Union leaders are in negotiations with the state and have a tentative contract deadline Friday. That's the legislative session's 60th day.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

District could garner millions from bills
An education-funding package passed by the House on Monday and supported by Gov. Frank Murkowski would provide the Juneau School District with about $3.23 million more next school year.

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

This Day in History
In Alaska; in the nation.

Legislation encourages retired physicians to volunteer services
A bill aiding physicians and other health care providers who want to remain in Alaska and volunteer their services is awaiting action in a Senate committee.

Photo: Award-winning bulldog
Alaska State Trooper Bryan Barlow and Chewy, a French bulldog, are shown at the Anchor Point Winter Rondi's dog show. Chewy wore a mini trooper uniform created by Barlow's wife, Ophelia, and trotted home with two awards, Best Costume and Judges' Choice.

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