Thursday, March 26, 2009

Executions implicate all in a democracy
The Alaska Peace Center is committed to nonviolent conflict resolution and working for peace within ourselves, our community and our world. As citizens of the state of Alaska, we cannot have peace within ourselves if we are responsible for the death of another human being by use of the death penalty. We cannot have peace in our communities absent the internal peace of the members of our communities.

Senate seat vacancy: A modest proposal
I believe the recent controversy about selection of a replacement to fill the vacant Senate seat of former Sen. Kim Elton is unnecessary.

Juneau's stimulus money not wasted
To the taxpayers of Juneau, thanks for the stimulus money. I thought you'd like to know how it is being used in Bloomington, Ind.

Fritz Cove Road has a dog problem
I am writing this letter as a concerned person who walks in Fritz Cove. People are not being responsible with their dogs on Fritz Cove Road.

Palin could do more to support education
When Gov. Sarah Palin was unable to name any newspapers or magazines she read, I was amazed and embarrassed as an Alaska resident.

Stimulus could help fund healthy lunches
Gov. Sarah Palin came out March 19 against some of Obama's stimulus program money. Palin says some of the money is short-term and will cost the state more in the future to keep the new programs running.

Governor says she won't block stimulus funds
Some legislators fear Gov. Sarah Palin is more interested in winning kudos from national Republicans for her anti-stimulus spending stance. Others, however, are taking a more conciliatory tone, saying that as long as they can get as much money as possible for Alaska, they don't care who gets the credit.

Lawmakers are days away from pay hike
Alaska's legislators are just a few days away from receiving long-awaited pay raises, as bills that would require politically risky public votes remain bottled up in committee.

Hotel room used to lure in OxyContin seekers
Court documents related to last week's undercover drug operations show insight into the sketchy process of obtaining large quantities of illicit drugs in Juneau.

Southeast town seeks students to fill school
In an effort to save their school, the residents of Tenakee Springs have launched an Internet marketing campaign. The item for sale: Tenakee Springs.

Herring roe-deo kicks off in Sitka
Schools of silvery herring arrived this week in Sitka. "It's really quite a lovely day," said fisherman Scott McAllister. "I'm enjoying my last few minutes of peace and quiet before we do battle."

Swope plans to hold line on city taxes, spending
City Manager Rod Swope and Finance Director Craig Duncan presented an overview of a conservative budget Wednesday that should make 2010 a surplus year and help put a dent into an estimated $5.3 million deficit forecast in 2011.

Photos: Sharing their knowledge
Approximately 97 speakers were invited to the"Sharing Our Knowledge" conference of Tlingit tribes and clans, which started Tuesday and willcontinue through Saturday at Centennial Hall.

Crash closure a long time coming
Retired Army Col. Meredith Townsend III has been to war, but until last week he was too afraid to come to Juneau.

Photos: Clowning around
Olexandr Kartukov, left, balances a stack of boxes next to Ringmaster Cornell "Tuffy" Nicholas during a Tuesday afternoon performance of the International All-Star Circus at Centennial Hall.

Photo: Fishing for flounder
Bill Byouer pulls in a small flounder off the dock at the Don Statter Boat Harbor on Wednesday while fishing with Ryan Mayhew, 10.

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

Photo: Grand day out
Co-leaders Megan Ahlman, right, and Linda Mancuso ski across Mendenhall Lake after leading a Wednesday hiking group on a tour to the glacier.

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

Around Town
Today

Correction
Juneau Empire columnist Ben Brown is co-chair of the Capital City Republicans. His title was not included in his last My Turn column that appeared in the Empire earlier this month. We regret the error.

Around Town
Thursday, March 26

Correction
A headline in Wednesday's Juneau Empire read "Governor says she won't block stimulus funds." The reporter noted in the story that Gov. Sarah Palin didn't say if she would actively block Alaska's portion of stimulus money.

Outside editorial: Obama softens his wish list
With Congress poised to rewrite his budget, President Obama subtly signaled Tuesday night that he understood that he could not have everything on his ambitious wish list. Granted, you had to be listening pretty closely to hear that.

Outside editorial: America's children deserve a better fate
It's hard to remember a president who inherited a worse budget fix than Barack Obama - with the economy reeling, federal revenues falling and the government obligated to spend huge sums to avert even worse. For the most part, it is not Obama's fault that the deficit, according to Friday's projection from the Congressional Budget Office, will reach a staggering $1.8 trillion this fiscal year and $1.4 trillion next year.

Outside editorial: You can depend on Detroit
Quick, which car brand do you suppose buyers report as being the most dependable after three years of ownership?

My turn: Air safety net has holes
For some, starting in February, flying in Alaska potentially just got a lot riskier. Certainly it has for those unfortunate enough to be in an accident with an aircraft without a 406 MHz emergency locator transmitter. In case you're not familiar with an ELT, it's a small battery-operated device that mounts in an aircraft and is turned on either manually or by impact forces. Turned on, it sends a signal to a network of satellites that process the signal and route it to the appropriate Rescue Coordination Center.

My turn: Juneau residents can help stop stormwater pollution
Since we typically see more rain than sun here in Juneau, stormwater and stormwater pollution are a major threat to our clean water. Stormwater is all of the rain and melted snow that runs off our paved streets, sidewalks, buildings, lawns, and construction and industrial sites. Everything dumped on our streets and into our stormdrains ends up in our salmon streams, wetlands and lakes, and eventually flows out into the ocean. Stormwater can include things like used motor oil, dog poop, antifreeze, herbicides, cigarette butts and other garbage.

My turn: State needs to recruit pharmacists
Pharmacists improve patient care. Chronic diseases cost the health care system about 75 cents on every health care dollar spent. Inappropriate use of medications leads to adverse events, costing the health care system $177 billion each year. Trained clinically, with expertise in medication use, pharmacists can and do ensure patients properly utilize their medications, improving health care outcomes, reducing overall health care costs. Every person has a right to have access to pharmacists and pharmacist provided care.

Despite nation's strides, hate groups growing in number
There are now 926 hate groups in this country. Take a second and consider that number. It represents an increase of more than 50 percent since 2000. And by "hate groups," I don't mean guys in their bathrobes who go online and pretend their followers are legion. No, I mean actual Klan cells, Neo-Nazi sects, gay-bashing "churches," cliques of black separatists, white nationalists, nativists, racist skinheads and other merchants of venom who meet, plot and recruit in all 48 contiguous states. (Alaska and Hawaii have no known hate groups.) Nine hundred twenty-six of them. The number is a record.

Juneau hunting guide sentenced to jail
ANCHORAGE - A 70-year-old Juneau man has been given a jail sentence and a hefty fine for illegal guiding of brown bears on Admiralty Island.

Road to be closed for training session
JUNEAU - This Friday from 8:30 a.m. to noon, Capital City Fire/Rescue plans to conduct training at the Hank Harmon Rifle Range. This portion of Montana Creek Road will be closed to pedestrian and vehicle traffic during this time.

ID of teen's remains tragic end to mystery
PORTLAND, Ore. - A man walking his dogs found what investigators and a heartbroken family had sought for more than a decade: the remains of a southern Oregon baby sitter who was just 14 when she vanished in 1998.

Chamber backs tax cap proposition
ANCHORAGE - The Anchorage Chamber of Commerce is backing a tax cap proposition that's on next month's municipal ballot.

Alaska Senate gives marmots their day
JUNEAU - Alaskans would celebrate Feb. 2 as Marmot Day - instead of Groundhog Day - under a bill that passed the state Senate.

Body found in Anchorage identified
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage police say a body found last week has been identified as a 47-year-old man last seen after he jumped nude from the third floor of a hotel.

Needy Seattle dogs receive kibble windfall
SEATTLE - A mountain of dog food has proven a bit of a headache for the Port of Seattle.

Anchorage firefighters forgo pay increase
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage firefighters have agreed to give up a pay raise this year.

Felon sentenced for possessing a firearm
ANCHORAGE - A 22-year-old Anchorage man has been sentenced for illegally possessing a firearm.

Oil removed from grounded vessel
ANCHORAGE - The Coast Guard has completed the removal of nearly 19,000 gallons of oil from a Seattle-based trawler aground on a Bering Sea island.

Alaska Airlines resumes flights
ANCHORAGE - Alaska Airlines said it will resume flights to and from Alaska after ash clouds cleared from the most recent eruption of Mount Redoubt.

Sixth Iditarod dog dies en route to Nome
ANCHORAGE - A sixth dog in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog race has died.

Senate approves energy assistance
JUNEAU - The state would provide an extra $9 million in short-term energy aid to low- and middle-income Alaskans under legislation that passed the state Senate.

Man's body found in Ketchikan basin
KETCHIKAN - The body of a man was found floating between two boats in Ketchikan's Thomas Basin.

20 inches of snow falls on Kodiak
KODIAK - A major snowstorm essentially shut down Kodiak.

Pilots report another laser beam at airport
SEATAC, Wash - Once again a laser reportedly has been shined into a plane landing at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

Final Iditarod musher reaches Nome finish
NOME - The last musher has reached the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race finish line.

Kake rolls into C Bracket semis
Phil Daetwiler's strong endgame play and clutch free throw shooting was enough for Angoon to grind out another tough 82-71 victory over Sitka Shee Atika in the C Bracket on Wednesday night at the 63rd Gold Medal Basketball Tournament.

NAPA takes Angoon into OT
A Juneau NAPA team made of replacement players took Angoon into overtime Tuesday in the C Bracket of the Gold Medal Tournament.

Green advances to face Klawock
Juneau Green Team's Kevin Casperson and Klukwan's Rob Hotch-Larose faced off in a long distance shoot-out, as the Green Team on Tuesday defeated Klukwan 87-52 in the Gold Medal Masters Bracket.

Martin fires 35 for Huna's 79-60 win over Yakutat
Huna 79, Yakutat 60 Myron Martin stroked eight three-pointers on his way to a 35-point night for Huna. Martin came out firing in the first half and when Martin was not hitting from deep, Huna looked the ball into the paint for big man, Stuart Mills, who made his presence known with 12 points.

Gold medal roundup
Klawock 73, Huna 68

Another ethics complaint is filed against Gov. Sarah Palin
ANCHORAGE - The second ethics complaint in a week filed against Gov. Sarah Palin alleges a conflict of interest when she wore Arctic Cat logo gear during this year's Tesoro Iron Dog snowmachine race.

Oil terminal a concern as volcano rumbles
ANCHORAGE - An Alaska volcano continued to rumble Tuesday amid new concerns that eruptions and mud flows will damage a nearby oil terminal where about 6 million gallons of crude are stored.

Mount Redoubt has two small eruptions
ANCHORAGE - Alaska's Mount Redoubt continued to erupt Wednesday with at least two small explosions, while a Chevron-operated pipeline company assessed the condition of an oil storage facility near the volcano.

Alaskans still mourning Exxon Valdez
ANCHORAGE - For Steve Smith, the 20-year anniversary of the nation's worst oil spill is like flowers at a loved one's grave, the mourner contemplating a heartbreaking loss alone and without fanfare.

Feds delay an ESA listing for rare loon
ANCHORAGE - Environmental groups chastised the Obama administration after federal wildlife officials relegated a rare Alaska loon to what the groups call "administrative purgatory."

Family of slain Anchorage man asks for burial money
ANCHORAGE - Relatives of a 21-year-old Anchorage man who was stabbed to death in Miami are taking unusual steps to raise money to bury him.

This Day in History
In the nation

Poet Sylvia Plath's son commits suicide in Fairbanks
When Nicholas Hughes was in his early 20s, his father, poet Ted Hughes, advised him on the importance of living bravely.

Photo: Getting around OK
Sen. Lisa Murkowski is wheeled into a meeting Tuesday on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. Earlier this month, Murkowski suffered a serious injury while skiing.

This Day in History
In the nation

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