Saturday, March 27, 2010

Taxation of soda is a slippery slope
The March 21 article "Anchorage politician backs soda tax" caught my interest. While I agree something needs to be done to guide our youth in better dietary habits, I fail to see how this can be accomplished with a 2- and 4-cent tax on soft drinks. By the time the wholesalers and retailers add their cut, it will be more than double the proposed amount.

Kensington blasting begins next month
Real mining work will begin soon at the Kensington Mine northwest of Juneau.

Photo: Sea walk fence
Eric Sather, left, and Jeff Sampson of AAA Fence Inc. ofAnchorageinstallplastic slats into fencing along Taku Smokeries property on Thursday. The work is part of the sea walk project.

Photo: Outdoor concert from Colorado ensemble
Members of the Kutandara Marimba Ensemble of Boulder, Colo. jump as they give a free lunch-time performance at theoutdoor park at the corner of Seward and Third Streets on Thursday. The Kutandara members are teaching marimba classes for kids, teens and adults this week at the Canvas Community Art Studio & Gallery, and will perform Friday at the Thunder Mountain High School Auditorium at 7:30 pm.

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials reported:

My turn: Cutting the cruise ship head tax makes no sense
Why does a campaign of fear and misrepresentation have to govern political policies and actions?

Pro: Life is improving for Haitians, and the global commitment is firm
WASHINGTON - The devastation in Haiti is almost impossible to comprehend, and what the earthquake destroyed in minutes will take years and the collective efforts of relief organizations and governments to repair.

Con: Thousands of Haitians will die unless US beefs-up relief efforts
WASHINGTON - President Clinton apologized on March 10 for the role that his government played in destroying a big part of Haitian agriculture: "It may have been good for some of my farmers in Arkansas, but it has not worked. ... I have to live every day with the loss of capacity to produce a rice crop in Haiti, to feed those people, because of what I did."

Bob Armstrong's 'life story in Alaska'
Photographer, naturalist and author Bob Armstrong believes the true definition of being an expert is acknowledging "you really don't know anything at all."

Tides
Today, March 26

Grooming report
As of March 25 the following Nordic trails are groomed and tracked for both skate andclassic skiing:

Spring is here. Can you smell it?
More days of sunshine, longer hours of light. These are the familiar signs that winter has reliquished its hold. Warmer weather means many things,including smells.

More to mating than just the 'quack'
The pond near my house is beginning to thaw. There are maybe ten square feet of open water at the inlet and a little more at the outlet - just enough to be discovered by a pair of mallards. Survivors of the hunting season, they formed their pair bond in winter.

'Kids night' fosters fun for the whole family
Few sports can be enjoyed by both 6-year-olds and their adult parents. Even fewer also foster participation from all walks of life and ability levels.

Photos: Sights from Sitka's herring catch
After weeks of waiting, the herring sac roe fishery opened in Sitka Sound Wednesday, beginning at 5:10 p.m. An estimated 6,900 tons were harvested.

Saturday Tracks and Signs hitting the Flume Trail
JUNEAU - The latest Tracks and Signs event, put on in conjunction with the Juneau Audubon Society, will meet Saturday, March 27 at 10 a.m. at the end of Basin Road.

Grayish wolf sighted near DZ, Lemon Creek
JUNEAU - A light-colored wolf seen recently around Juneau has been spotted this week near Dzantik'i Heeni Middle School and in the Lemon Creek area.

Managing wildlife rally to be held, book signings tonight
JUNEAU - The Alaska Wildlife Alliance will hold two days of events beginning tonight at 7 p.m. at the Juneau Arts and Humanities Council. There will also be a rally Saturday, March 27, at noon in front of the Capitol downtown.

Calling all 'green-thumbed' students
Students with an affinity for agriculture, or those with a uniquely green thumb, are encouraged to take advantage of scholarships being sponsored by the Southeast Master Gardeners Association this year.

Wild shots
Submit your wild shots

Icicle Seafoods gifts thousands to UAS
JUNEAU - Icicle Seafoods, a seafood processing company founded in Petersburg and currently one of the largest seafood processors in Alaska, has gifted $20,000 to the University of Alaska Southeast to help fund various educational programs.

Park Service would ban hunting bear cubs in dens
ANCHORAGE - The National Park Service wants to ban hunting black bear cubs and sows with cubs in their dens in the Denali and Gates of Arctic preserves.

Juneau Raptor Center to hold annual meeting
JUNEAU - The Juneau Raptor Center will hold their annual meeting Saturday, March 27, beginning at 11 a.m. at the Nugget Mall.

Trout Unlimited: Phase out felt-soled products
JUNEAU - Trout Unlimited's Alaska Program urged the Board of Fisheries to phase out the use of felt-soled wading products in Alaska as a way to guard against the spread of aquatic invasive species at a March 16-21 meeting in Anchorage.

Grand jury indicts Homer woman
KENAI - A Kenai grand jury has indicted a 26-year-old Homer woman on charges she altered a commercial fishing crew member license to receive benefits from the Alaska Fishermen's Fund.

Government says US oil production increased in 2009
CHEYENNE, Wyo. - Increased crude oil production in the Gulf of Mexico and North Dakota more than offset declines elsewhere last year to result in the first annual increase in U.S. oil production since 1991, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Guide pleads guilty to illegal moose hunt
DENALI NATIONAL PARK - A commercial guide has been fined for leading an illegal moose hunt inside Denali National Park.

Police recover at least 30 stolen cars, arrest man
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage police have recovered at least 30 stolen cars while breaking up a theft operation.

Parnell reappoints two Juneau residents to state positions
JUNEAU - Two Juneau residents have been reappointed to state positions by Gov. Sean Parnell.

Sarah Palin's Alaska series to appear on cable TV
NEW YORK - Sarah Palin's travelogue series about Alaska has landed at the TLC cable network, and filming is set to begin this summer.

Kake crushes Klukwan to advance
Kake came out against Klukwan and left little doubt as to which team was going to advance Thursday afternoon in C Bracket action.

Hydaburg holds off Metlakatla
Metlakatla was determined to not let Thursday's win-or-go-home matchup versus Hydaburg turn out like the teams' previous Sunday meeting, in which Hydaburg pulled away early for a 103-88 victory.

Yakutat rallies by Klukwan for Master's Bracket win
A 12-point Klukwan lead at halftime was quickly erased in the second half as Thursday's opener went down to the wire in the M bracket.

Photo: Silver medalist visits Treadwell

Parnell proposes cruise head tax rollback
Gov. Sean Parnell Thursday provided more details on his plan to reduce cruise ship head taxes, and said he would soon introduce legislation that could end up returning most or all of the $46 per passenger "head tax" to the industry.

Anchorage retail growth slows in economic crunch
ANCHORAGE - Business experts say the growth of retail stores in Anchorage has slowed after 15 years of rapid expansion.

Settlement to free up funds for Alaskans
Alaska securities regulators announced a settlement Thursday with Citigroup Global Markets, Inc., under which the company would repurchase auction-rate securities it sold to Alaska customers.

Prospects for Pebble Mine study uncertain
Gov. Sean Parnell said he wants the state to have the best information available as it evaluates the potential effects of developing a copper-and-gold prospect at Bristol Bay. But he stopped short of endorsing the third-party review that two lawmakers have requested, saying the permitting process is meant to elicit "the best data on all sides."

Bill would restore gun rights to some felons
Some felons living in Alaska would have full gun rights restored under a bill heard Thursday in a committee hearing.

Dozens of cars pulled from Anchorage auto graveyard
ANCHORAGE - When Anchorage had to dispose of thousands of cars and trucks damaged in a powerful 1964 earthquake, it dumped them off a 350-foot (100-meter) bluff near the outskirts of town.

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