Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Calling for corporate comeuppance
One of comedienne Lily Tomlin's original acts featured a telephone operator and lines such as, "we're the telephone company, you can trust me." Well, that was then and this is now.

Improve transportation and save money
After attending a recent Marine Transportation Advisory Board meeting, I have a solution for those folks who can't afford to travel out of Juneau - go to work for the Alaska Marine Highway System. All employees and their families get to travel free on the ferries, and if you are invested in the retirement system (five years of service) you will be able to travel free for the rest of your life.

State should lease, not buy computers
There has been a good deal of discussion regarding recycling lately, as the growing landfill has become more apparent to all. In all recycling discussions, it is best to follow the reduce, reuse, recycle sequence which is provided often by experts in the field. In applying this to Juneau (and to other parts of the state) it always surprises me that state, city and federal entities are buying rather than leasing computers and peripheral computer equipment (printers, copiers, etc.).

Miners don't kill fish; fishermen do
Concerning Berners Bay and the Kensington Mine:

Bravo Glacier Valley for D.C. performance
I just got home from seeing the performance by Glacier Valley Elementary School of "The Tides and The Tempest" on March 14 at the Kennedy Center here in Washington, D.C. As a 30-year former resident of Juneau, living in the D.C. area for the last four years, it was a special treat for me.

Residents drive debate on city off-road park
About 100 people showed up Tuesday night at Centennial Hall for a special meeting of the city Planning Commission hosted solely for public testimony on a proposed off-highway vehicle park in North Douglas.

State backs decision to deny autopsy
The director of the state Division of Health said the State Medical Examiner's office made the right decision when it denied a second Juneau police request for an autopsy to be performed on 46-year-old Lori Jo Hall.

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

Correction
A My Turn column Monday, "Repetition that Deepens Learning," incorrectly cited a 1992 Scientific American. The correct information follows:

Cheaper harbors lure Juneau fishermen
Juneau's moorage rates are the highest in Southeast Alaska. Some fishermen say they left town partly because of them, but port directors say the fees are as low as they can go.

Photo: Gold Medal heats up
Huna Totem player Kamal Lindoff, left, tries to shoot over Metlakatla's Tom Booth Jr. Lindoff scored a team-high 18 points to lead Huna Totem to a 75-53 victory Tuesday in the Gold Medal C Bracket game. For complete coverage of the tournament, see today's Sports section.

Teachers unhappy with UAS autoshop decision
Automotive technology high school teacher Stephen Squires said he got a certificate of appreciation last week from the University of Alaska Southeast - on the same day he found out it had effectively ended his autoshop program.

Juneau musher reaches Nome
NOME - The 2008 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race is over.

Photo: Head's up
Juneau-Douglas High School soccer player Sam Greely eyes the ball Monday at the school's field during the first day of outdoor practice for the JDHS soccer team. The team will travel to Spokane, Wash., in early April to start its season.

Photo: A balanced approach
Cachet Garrett, a health educator for Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium, points to a board that explains healthy food portions Tuesday at SEARHC's booth in the Juneau-Douglas High School commons. Several booths have been set up in the commons during the Lions Club Gold Medal Basketball Tournament.

School Board approves extra $1.3 million for renovation
The Juneau School Board on Tuesday approved taking $1.3 million from a reserve fund to cover an increase in the expected cost of renovating one of the district's elementary schools.

Committee recommends Marie Drake for Montessori
Most members of the Juneau School Board's Facilities Committee said Monday that the school district's entire Montessori program should be housed in the Marie Drake building next school year.

Around Town
Today

Three arrested after burglary at downtown liquor store
Police arrested three suspects following a Tuesday morning burglary at Thibodeau's Home Liquor and Deli-Market, on the corner of Whittier Street and West Willoughby Avenue.

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

School Board takes look at proposal for Montessori move
The entire Juneau School Board on Tuesday had its first look at a plan to house the district's Montessori program at the Marie Drake building next school year.

Two Juneau men arrested in connection with burglaries
Juneau police arrested two men they allege were involved with burglaries in two homes two years ago.

Around Town
Today

Heritage and Cultural Tourism
SITKA - Sitka Tribe of Alaska is pleased to announce the second annual Heritage and Cultural Tourism Conference, to be held April 2 to 4 at Harrigan Centennial Hall in Sitka. The conference, with the theme "Building Cultural Tourism," is planned for all levels of employees and those involved in the growing field of cultural and heritage tourism.

The Learning Connection offers preparation for citizenship test
JUNEAU - The Learning Connection will offer a class to help people prepare for the U.S. citizenship test.

SEARHC celebrates Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
SITKA - The second National Native HIV/AIDS Awareness Day takes place on Thursday, and the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium would like to honor those Alaska Natives, American Indians and Native Hawai'ians who have been affected by HIV/AIDS. On March 20, an information table about the impact of HIV/AIDS on Alaska Natives will be set up in the lobby of SEARHC Mount Edgecumbe Hospital in Sitka.

KTOO to air showcase of Alaska writers next Tuesday
JUNEAU - KTOO 104.3 FM will air a special radio program, "Letters from the North," a showcase of Alaska writers, storytellers and poets, at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, March 25.

Sealaska accepts applications for 2008 Celebration events
JUNEAU - Sealaska Heritage Institute is accepting applications for Celebration 2008 events.

Hacking the mystery of MySpace
Imagine a greasy 37-year-old man, coming home to an empty apartment from his pathetic accounting job, where, after two years, everyone still thinks his name is Bob.

Getting ready for kindergarten
Our little girl will be going to kindergarten next year. For most parents this is a significant event in their family's history. In our household it is even more momentous: Two years ago, our daughter was diagnosed as autistic.

High-income taxpayers may receive tax rebates
With the recently announced Economic Stimulus Payments (rebates), there may be an opportunity for high-income taxpayers who would otherwise be subjected to the phase-out of these payments.

Reader seeks chicken cacciatore with shrimp recipe
Auntie Emo: Does anyone have a recipe for chicken cacciatore with shrimp? You cook it in a slow-cooker. I've only lost two favorite recipes over the years and this was one of them.

Mattson, Anderson to wed
Linda Anderson, of Anchorage, and Stephen Mattson, of Juneau, will marry at 3 p.m. on April 5, 2008, at Anchorage Baptist Temple in Anchorage. A reception will follow at The Den on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus.

Carson, Thompson to wed
Joanne Thompson, of Tucson, Ariz., and Chris Carson, of Juneau, will marry on July 26, 2008, at Glacier Gardens in Juneau.

Thanks for supporting our annual concert
The Juneau Co-op Preschool would like to thank the following businesses and individuals for their support in our recent children's concert fundraiser, Zip-a-dee-doo-dah: Alaska Canopy Adventures, Douglas Cafe, Our Backyard, Mount Roberts Tramway, Princess Cruises, Paradise Cafe, The Hangar, Seventh Heaven, Gross Alaska Theaters, First Implressions Hair Salon, Dragon Inn, Island Pub, Alaska Fudge Co,. Rainy Day Books, Stampin' Up, Gourmet Alaska, Valley lumber, Pat Costello, Juneau Artist's Gallery, The Art Department, Friends of the Alaska State Museum, The Juneau Empire, Hearthside Books, Imagination Station, Bear's Lair, Play it Again Sports, Kodiak Coat Co., Poundstone Freight, Blockbuster Video, Rainbow Foods, The Creating Place, Alaska Nugget Outfitter, Foggy Mountain Shop, Raven's Eye Studio, The Rock Dump, Gold Town Nickelodeon, A&P, Super Bear, Fred Meyer, Walmart and Costco, Era Helicopters LLC, Heritage Coffee Co., Treadwell Ice Arena, Perserverance Theatre, Andy Romanoff and Alaska Litho, Frontier Suites, the Juneau Arts and Culture Center, Wee Fishie Shoppe, Zen Restaurant, The Growing Tree Safeway, Pepsi, Jeff Brown, Jason Messing, Elias Antaya, Max Blust, Robert Newman, Jamie Marks, Bobby Jones, Heidi Johnson, Dave Kovach, Jason Hort, Tom Schwartz, Travis Croteau, Gene Nelson, Margie Hamburger, Rhonda Gardinier and Mary Sweeney.

AARP, Widowed Persons Program sponsor public tax program
JUNEAU - The AARP Tax Aide Program and the Widowed Persons Program are sponsoring a free public program on taxes at 2 p.m. Saturday at the Mendenhall Valley library conference room.

Gordon Stockdale
Former longtime Juneau resident Gordon James Stockdale died Dec. 9, 2007, in Seattle of metastatic cancer. He was 65.

Lyle H. Robinson
Former Juneau resident Lyle H. Robinson, of Underwood, N.D., died March 15, 2008, at the Turtle Lake Community Memorial Hospital following a long illness. He was 79.

Elizabeth Walters
Juneau resident Elizabeth Kitka Walters died March 19, 2008, in Juneau. She was 74.

Sylvia Merrill Wright
Former Juneau resident Sylvia L. Merrill Wright died peacefully in her sleep on March 14, 2008, in Aurora, Colo., after returning from a vacation. She was 73.

Ida Jo Reddekopp
Former Juneau resident Ida Jo Reddekopp died March 16, 2008, at Ray Hickey Hospice House in Vancouver, Wash. She was 69.

My Turn: Building Alaska with a better capital budget
The Legislature is poised to pass a supplemental budget which contains $3.6 billion in savings. That sounds good, but $3.6 billion may be but a fraction of what should turn out to be a banner year for Alaska's savings accounts. Today Alaska is looking at record-breaking revenues due to record-breaking oil prices and at this writing, the predicted total surplus may be upwards of $7 billion. But as you know, the legislators who have the power over this surplus are the same legislators who control the operating and capital budgets. So we ask: "How much of the surplus will be spent, how much will be saved?" Many of us search for that answer, because as of today, the Legislature does not have a clear spending or savings plan in which the public can place its trust.

My Turn: Palin not abandoning earmarks altogether
With the coming of spring in the nation's capital, Congress has begun its annual ritual of producing a federal budget.

My Turn: Saving a dream from becoming a nightmare
With commencement of the Alaska Gasline Inducement Act process, Alaska has finally begun to realize the long-held dream of building a pipeline to transport natural gas from the North Slope to markets in the Lower 48. Though we're off to a good start, we have much to do before the dream becomes a reality.

My Turn: Missing man's family clings to hope
I am writing to clear up any confusion and make clear how Michael F. Dunne's family feels about his disappearance. The events of the past three weeks have been surreal. Frequently, people view this type of situation as, "It happens to other people." They never dream their family will be chosen to endure this anguish. So many emotions wash over you - fear, disbelief, hope, anticipation, just to name a few. Then, on top of dealing with all of those emotions, one has to turn on what I call "the filters."

Outside editorial: Painful days ahead
The Federal Reserve's extraordinary response Sunday to Bear Stearns Cos.' looming collapse signals an unnerving new phase in the protracted credit crunch. No longer is the Fed simply pumping money into the economy to promote lending. It is now putting taxpayers on the hook for investments of uncertain value and extending federal help to Wall Street firms whose activities haven't been regulated as closely as commercial banks.

Alaska Editorial: Subsidized flights essential for survival
Imagine life in rural Alaska without access to regular, dependable air travel.

Three men rescued when vessel sinks
SITKA - Three men were rescued Sunday night when their vessel sank in Cross Sound.

Legislature waits to hear capital move bills
JUNEAU - A bill to promote the construction of a new legislative hall, likely outside Juneau, has not been heard in the Legislature since a controversial hearing last week, and no further hearings were scheduled as of Monday.

Bodies of Kenai fire victims removed
KENAI - Authorities recovered the bodies of a woman and three children Monday who died when a fire consumed their home this weekend.

Feds: Procedures not followed in fatality
ANCHORAGE - A job site fatality last year in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough occurred because proper procedures and controls were not followed, according to a report released by the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration.

Senate wants share of U.S. oil revenue
JUNEAU - The state Senate says Alaska deserves a share of future offshore oil production taxes and royalties from the federal government.

Woman charged for theft from business
KENAI - An employee at a pull-tab business was arrested for stealing more than $53,000 to support an addiction to painkillers.

House OKs savings plan for surplus
JUNEAU - The state House agreed Tuesday to ask voters if they would approve a plan to stash surplus oil revenues in an income-generating endowment.

Leader of foreign offshoot church dies
JORDANVILLE, N.Y. - Metropolitan Laurus, who played a key role in healing an 80-year schism between the Russian Orthodox Church and an offshoot set up abroad following the Bolshevik Revolution, has died. He was 80.

Earthquake shakes Alaska Peninsula
CHIGNIK - An earthquake occurred Tuesday in the Alaska Peninsula region near the town of Chignik.

Klukwan grabs opening win
The Klukwan Chilkats opened the Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament Master's Bracket with a 91-49 victory against the Legion 2008 Legends on Monday at the Juneau-Douglas High School gym.

Huna Totem eliminates Metlakatla
While Tuesday's Gold Medal C Bracket game between Huna Totem and Metlakatla was punctuated by extracurricular comments and verbal warnings, Kamal Lindoff let his game do the talking and led Huna Totem to a 75-53 victory.

Photo: Haines spirit
Haines fans, from left, Lyndsey Hura, Rikki Gelston, Zdravea Jones, Andrea Ferrin, Kassie Ambruster and Kim Ferrin, dress up to support their team Monday during the Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament at Juneau-Douglas High School. The Merchants defeated Sitka Estella 96-82 in the Mighty B Bracket.

Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament Today's schedule
• Mighty B Bracket: Sitka vs. Metlakatla, 3:30 p.m.Yakutat vs. Hoonah, 9 p.m.

SPORTS IN JUNEAU
UPCOMING EVENTS

Experienced Yakutat upends Sitka
Yakutat showed the Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament crowd on Tuesday what experience and cohesion on the court can do in a Master's Bracket win at the Juneau-Douglas High School gym.

Bean steals the show in Kake win over Filco 81-72
The Rudy Bean show was the evening flick at the Juneau-Douglas High School gym on Monday as Kake outlasted a scrappy Filipino Community team 81-72 in Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament Legendary C Bracket action.

Raffle with a cause
Alice Ottoson-McKeen, a sophomore at Juneau-Douglas High School, walked among the fans at the Gold Medal while she called 50/50 tickets for sale.

Gold Medal special for the refs
The Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament isn't just a special event for fans and players, but for the referees as well.

Eagles undefeated season grounded with opening loss
The Angoon Eagles boy's basketball team suffered its first loss of the season, 69-47, in the opening round of the Alaska School Activities Association Class 2A State Boys Basketball Tournament at Anchorage's Sullivan Arena.

Angoon wins second straight Mighty B Bracket game
Angoon moved one step closer to playing for the Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament Mighty B Bracket title with a 103-70 win over Yakutat on Monday at the Juneau-Douglas High School gym.

Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament: Tuesday's schedule
Mighty B Bracket: Klukwan vs. Metlakatla, 3:30 p.m.Kake vs. Hoonah, 9 p.m.

Watts' clutch goal gives Blue a Tier C victory
The Blue team's Kit Watts broke a 2-2 tie with 5:22 left in regulation to give his squad a 3-2 win over the Green team in Juneau Adult Hockey Association Tier C action Sunday at Treadwell Arena.

Crimson Bears look to deal with pressure
The final hour of the Juneau-Douglas High School boys basketball team's Monday morning practice consisted almost entirely of running and breaking out of defensive traps.

Morgan tops Marrero in Roughhouse main event
Roughhouse Friday at Marlintini's Lounge featured a little bit of everything. It had the first all-female mixed martial arts bout held in Juneau along with fighters brawling for money to fix a car and for sushi.

JDHS girls look to control tempo
Many times during a game, the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team turns steals and turnovers into points via a fast-break layup or transition jumper.

Kake girls fall to Point Hope
Point Hope held off Kake 54-47 in the opening round of the Alaska School Activities Association Class 2A State Girls Basketball Tournament on Tuesday at Sullivan Arena in Anchorage.

Metlakatla tops Klukwan to stay alive in B Bracket
Metlakatla raced to a 53-29 halftime lead and never looked back in a 102-68 victory over Klukwan in the Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament Mighty B Bracket on Tuesday at the Juneau-Douglas High School gym.

Murkowski urges gas line action
The advice from U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski to state lawmakers on Tuesday was simple: "Think energy and think jobs."

Fate of capital projects still uncertain after vote
The House unanimously approved a $4.3 billion supplemental budget bill on Monday, but the biggest area of contention may be still in flux.

An uncommon ethics query: What's a good gift for Palin's baby?
What happens when a governor whose strong stand on ethics is an important part of her phenomenal popularity is having a baby, and suddenly everybody wants to give her gifts?

Employees say lack of pension hurts state
Some fear Alaska's state government made its retirement problem worse, not better, when it adopted a controversial new system that began in 2006.

Coast Guard plans more Arctic surveillance flights
KODIAK - The U.S. Coast Guard has stepped up surveillance flights to the Arctic and plans to complete one every two weeks to familiarize crews with the terrain.

Lawmakers vote to stick with $70 million in capital projects
It's Gov. Sarah Palin's turn now.

Photo: Rotten to the core
Ben Russell, 15, of Eagle River, holds his winning pair of "rotten" sneakers Tuesday in the annual Odor-Eaters Rotten Sneaker Contest in Montpelier, Vt.

Photo: Strutting their stuff
Pam Bushnell makes her rounds Thursday in downtown Ketchikan with her pink poodle, Milligan. Bushnell says her favorite color is pink. She dyed her dog's fur with cherry Kool Aid.

With VECO fall, a new name tops political donor list
ANCHORAGE - A real estate development company is now the biggest contributor to Alaska congressional campaigns, following the demise of VECO Corp. in an ongoing political corruption investigation.

Lawmaker chides father's former aide
U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski didn't hide her disappointment with Jim Clark, who served as her father's top aide when Frank Murkowski was governor.

This Day in History
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