A joke so close to true it's not funny
This morning, March 7, the swimming pool shower discussion group got to talking about the recent push to move Alaska's capital out of Juneau. One of the wags suggested they just go ahead and move it ... long pause ... "to the Federal Penitentiary in Oregon since that seems to be where our politicians, lobbyists, and now our administration officials seem to be headed, anyway."

Politicians should reassess priorities
I think the most upsetting thing about the Alaska government is how moving the Legislature and having Gov. Sarah Palin be vice president are more important than the climbing rates of murder, suicide and other felonies that are on the rise.

Sexism pervasive in Clinton coverage
"Mrs. Clinton could be one of the finest presidents," read the Juneau Empire headline on the March 4 My Turn by Charles Campbell. That's what it said. Was her title chosen purposefully?

Thank you for Sunday's editorial
Thank you for the March 9 editorial about student placement at Thunder Mountain High School. Thanks also to Rene Pisel Walker for her letter to the editor on this same issue.

Assembly OKs new smoking ordinance
The Juneau Assembly closed a loophole Monday used by private clubs to allow bar patrons to continue smoking inside after the final phase of a citywide ban on smoking in public places went into effect Jan. 2.

Medical examiner won't do autopsy
The state Medical Examiner's Office denied a Juneau police request for an autopsy on the remains of a Juneau woman found dead in a hotel early Saturday morning.

Commission reverses rezone decision, OKs union building project
The Juneau Planning Commission voted Tuesday to allow a union to rezone its lot on West Ninth Street to build a larger office building in the downtown flats area.

Schimanski pleads guilty to forgery, theft and burglary
A member of a ring of alleged thieves and forgers, who are believed to have stolen checks, jewelry, art and mail from more than 30 locations throughout the city, pleaded guilty to forgery, theft and burglary Monday in Juneau Superior Court.

Photo: Future civic leaders meet with Palin
Gov. Sarah Palin, right, meets with teens from around the state who have come to the capital for the eighth annual Civics and Conservation Summit, sponsored by the Alaska Youth for Environmental Action program. The group talked with Palin about renewable energy and action on global warming. The summit runs through Thursday.

Photo: Embarking on a new journey
Bridget Milligan rows her boat Monday in the Gastineau Channel. Milligan has rowed and sailed her boat extensively in Alaska waters, including a trip around Kodiak Island and excursions in Southeast waters. She plans to do more boating after her business, Kodiak Coat Company, closes for good at the end of the month.

Job Fair expected to draw hundreds of job seekers
Eighty local employers have registered for this spring's Job Fair on Wednesday at Centennial Hall in downtown Juneau.

Around Town

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

Photo: Screamin' eagle
A bald eagle vocalizes as it soars Monday over the Auke Bay harbor parking lot. There are an estimated 30,000 bald eagles in Alaska.

Photo: Better bait than dinner
Lester Hunt, a crew member aboard the fishing boat Mr. Wind, cuts up squid to be used as bait for gray cod fishing Monday at the Don Statter Boat Harbor in Auke Bay.

Tuesday's Juneau Empire story "Assembly OKs new smoking ordinance" reported that businesses with four or fewer employees can allow smoking inside the business. Companies can do so only in areas restricted to the public.

Around Town

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

Yaakoosgé seeks art funding
Art students in Miah Lager's ravenstail weaving class at Yaakoosegé Daakahídi Alternative High School may not have any art classes next year, due to the expiration of the three-year Transitions Grant, funded by the U.S. Department of Education.

Quilt Show results
For the Juneau Empire

Strap the skis on the snake
My daughter cried when the grill ran over her snake. It wasn't a real snake; it was a dummy made of PVC pipe, dressed in a snowsuit and a snake costume. But the grill was real, with hot dogs cooking and music blaring. Both things were tenuously attached to skis, speeding down the platter pole at Eaglecrest Ski Area.

Zach Gordon Youth Center to hold annual Easter Egg Hunt
JUNEAU - The Zach Gordon Youth Center will hold its annual Easter Egg Hunt at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 22, at Adair Kennedy Park, located adjacent to Floyd Dryden Middle School.

Poetry OmniBus announces winners, Poetry on Wheels
JUNEAU - The winning poems from the recent Poetry OmniBus competition were selected and will be posted inside Capital Transit System buses in mid-March. The winners will read their winning poems at a reception at 7 p.m. Saturday, March 15, at the downtown library.

Coast Guard association to host annual March charity auction
JUNEAU - The Juneau Coast Guard Military and Family Association will host its 20th annual March charity auction, "Vintage Hollywood," at 5:30 p.m. March 22 in the Treadwell Room of the Baranof Hotel.

Association presents family dance, potluck to take place Thursday
JUNEAU - The Association for the Education of Young Children will present "When was the last time YOU did the hokey pokey?" family dance and potluck from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday at Chapel by the Lake.

Richard McKinley
Juneau resident Richard McKinley died on March 7, 2008, at Bartlett Memorial Hospital in Juneau. He was 76.

Eric Eidsness
Longtime Juneau resident Eric Eidsness died March 8, 2008, in Wasilla. He was 37.

Adelia Waid
Juneau resident Adelia Waid died March 8, 2008, in Juneau. She was 87.

Robert Gregovich
Longtime Juneau resident Robert "Bob" P. Gregovich died peacefully March 7, 2008, surrounded by his family at the Juneau Pioneers' Home. He died from complications of multiple sclerosis. He was 74 years old.

Louise Richardson
Longtime Juneau resident Louise "Evelyn" Richardson died peacefully on March 5, 2008, at the Juneau Pioneers' Home. She was 70.

Glenn William Sachs
Juneau resident the Rev. Glenn William Sachs died March 8, 2008, at Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau. He was 90.

My Turn: Refuge a good way to honor former Gov. Hammond
We write this open letter in the hope that readers can find a few minutes to help us move ahead with establishing the Jay Hammond State Game Refuge. There have been many heart-warming ideas for honoring Gov. Jay Hammond since his untimely passing in 2005, leaving us survivors to go on with some of his life work.

Local column: Measuring today's schools along tomorrow's experiences
When the new Thunder Mountain High School opens next fall, it's not likely to be free of all the unfriendly suspicions it's garnered during the past 10 years. But whose place is it to decide if the school is a success or a failure? And when will it be ready for its judgment day?

Outside editorial: Where terrorists hide
This editorial appeared in the Los Angeles Times:

My Turn: Transportation department road stats fail to illuminate
Pat Kemp, a good public servant and vocal Lynn Canal road advocate for many years, mentioned my Feb. 29 newsletter in his recent opinion piece. Here's what the 1,175 newsletter subscribers read:

Outside column: The war of words may still turn ugly
The seven-day war of words between Colombia and the Venezuela-Ecuador alliance ended in embraces, but both sides have emerged with fresh ammunition that could spark a new conflict at anytime - and probably will.

Outside editorial: Gov. Spitzer must resign his position
The following editorial first appeared in Newsday:

Legislators pass salmon tax credit
JUNEAU - Salmon processors may continue to get a state tax break for developing new salmon products.

Developer appeals to stop cottage housing
JUNEAU - All Seasons subdivision developers Kelly Corrigan and Mary Kay Pusich asked the Juneau Assembly on Monday to accept their appeal and overrule an earlier Planning Commission decision granting permits to a neighboring cottage housing development.

Malley to plead guilty in child porn case
JUNEAU - Jeffery Malley, 29, appeared in Juneau Superior Court on Monday asking to schedule a date to change his not guilty plea on six counts of possessing child pornography.

Palin appoints Morley to council
JUNEAU - Juneau resident Lisa Morley has been appointed to the Statewide Independent Living Council by Gov. Sarah Palin.

KTOO soliciting for music and video sale
JUNEAU - KTOO is soliciting donations for its semiannual used record, compact disc and video sale from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, March 29, at KTOO Studios.

House leaders, Palin spar over vetoes
JUNEAU - A dispute over last year's vetoed capital projects threatens to hold up this year's budget process.

Group claims unions harm education
ANCHORAGE - The teachers union in Anchorage is one target of a nationwide campaign launched today by an advocacy group that claims the unions harm the public education system.

Army extends tour for aviation unit
FORT RICHARDSON - The Iraqi tour of duty for a Fort Wainwright-based aviation unit has been extended.

Palin urges Alaskans to be more active
JUNEAU - Gov. Sarah Palin wants you to get moving.

Assembly supports labor agreements
JUNEAU - Sitting before an audience of union workers bearing "PLA" stickers, the Juneau Assembly on Monday passed an informal resolution supporting Project Labor Agreements on all city construction projects.

Millay, Geiger earn top honors
Style, power and artistry in the air were all on display Friday night at the Shralp! slopestyle snowboard and ski competition sponsored by Hangar on the Wharf, Sequence Core Skate Shop and Traffic at Eaglecrest Ski Area.

Nome awaits Mackey, King
NOME - Victory in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race is all but assured for either of two past winners who were waging a tight contest expected to end early this morning in this frontier town.

Arctic Winter Games open
In his previous five Arctic Winter Games, Garry Hull of Anchorage watched others carry their delegation's flag. Sometimes he wished he was the chosen one.

Photo: Looking ahead
Leean Rees of Alaskan Dames, right, looks up as she tries to beat Alaska Glacier Seafoods' Debbie Vance to the puck during Sunday's Juneau Adult Hockey Association Women's B game at Treadwell Arena.

Mackey, King sprint for Nome
The burled arch in this old gold rush town is up and ready for the grand finale of the 1,100-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. But no one can predict who will reach it first.

Ice Pirates roll to Tier A win
The Ice Pirates scored their biggest win of the year Sunday after upending Doc Water's Pub 6-2 in a Juneau Adult Hockey Association Tier A game on Sunday at Treadwell Arena.

Juneau's Sekona, Lehnhart score for Team Alaska
Juneau's Carly Lehnhart and Margaret Sekona accounted for three goals and two assists in Team Alaska's 5-4 loss to Sami in the opening round of the Indoor Soccer Intermediate Female Tournament on Monday in Yellowknife for the Arctic Winter Games.

Juneau's Brown, Francis strike gold
Juneau's Hunter Brown and Leah Francis won gold ulus in the snowshoeing competitions on Tuesday at the Arctic Winter Games in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.

Juneau Parks and Recreation Co-Ed Volleyball League Standings
Juneau Parks and Recreation Co-Ed Volleyball League Standings



Juneau fights to keep Legislature
Juneau residents on Tuesday urged lawmakers against taking away the public's right to know what a capital move would cost.

Groups sue to force polar bear decision
Three conservation groups sued the Department of the Interior on Monday for failing to meet a deadline on a decision to list polar bears as threatened because of the loss of Arctic sea ice.

Plan to provide health care for all worries businesses
Business advocates said Tuesday they are keeping a close eye on a bill that would require all Alaskans to have health insurance and some businesses to pay for a piece of it.

Palin VP mentions stoke her popularity
Gov. Sarah Palin will be the first to admit that it might be a stretch for a hockey mom from Alaska to be considered for the No. 2 spot on Sen. John McCain's presidential ticket.

Clark may lose license to practice law
The Alaska Bar Association has begun a process that may lead to the disbarring of Jim Clark, former chief of staff to former Gov. Frank Murkowski and prominent Juneau attorney.

Hunting group takes aim at black bears
A private hunting group hopes to help hundreds of hunters kill as many black bears as possible in a game unit west of Anchorage.

Photo: On the Nome stretch

Sled maker keeps eye on work in the Iditarod
WHITEFIELD, N.H. - Carl Brown is at home in Whitefield, but his heart is on the trail in Alaska, where dog teams are pulling three sleds he built for racers in the Iditarod race.

Avalanche forecaster killed in giant slide near Cordova
ANCHORAGE - An avalanche forecaster was killed Saturday in a giant slide, one day after warning people of the danger that existed around Cordova.

Kohring continues push for new trial
ANCHORAGE - Former state Rep. Vic Kohring continued his quest for a new shot at beating federal corruption charges, this time with testimony from a friend who claims to have witnessed hostility a decade ago between Kohring and the wife of the judge who presided over his trial.

This Day in History
In Alaska and in the Nation

Two hurt when Iditarod plane goes down outside checkpoint
NOME - Two members of a media production crew working with organizers of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race were injured Tuesday when their small plane crashed en route to a race checkpoint.

House approves state revenue sharing
Alaska's communities would get a cut of the state's oil wealth - at least while oil prices remain high - under legislation approved Tuesday by the state House.

Orthodox Church in Alaska appoints new administrator as bishop is investigated
KODIAK - The Orthodox Church in Alaska has appointed a new administrator to replace its bishop, who is on mandatory leave while church officials investigate allegations that he abused his office.

This Day in History
In Alaska, in the Nation and the World

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