Thursday, April 1, 2004

Day to kick smoking
March 31, 2004 is National Kick Butts Day where youth across America join together to promote a tobacco-free environment. As part of the JDHS T.A.T.U. (Teens Against Tobacco Use), I thought I would want to write why I personally don't smoke and encourage others to avoid tobacco as well.

Kucinich supporters not just persevering
Dennis Kucinich came to Juneau and galvanized overflow crowds at five events. The Juneau Empire wrote two stories, but it missed the whole point. Kucinich activists are not "persevering in the face of certain defeat." As Congressman Kucinich said in Juneau, he can do the math.

Stevens shows courage in budget proposal
Kudos to Sen. Ben Stevens for having some courage in solving Alaska's fiscal problems. As for the Democrats' response, they have suggested oil taxes, yet are they working in earnest (or believe their proposals are even possible?) or trying to score political points?

Real input, not false gestures
Last year, many cities in the state as well as the state Legislature passed amendments asking the federal government not to pass the Patriots Act II. Those actions signified Alaskans' strong sense of fair play and devotion to true freedom.

Kucinich, Dean are helping the party
I want to applaud Carol Anderson and Chistopher Wright for expressing much of what I felt the need to say regarding the recent reporting of the Democratic Party presidential campaigns and caucus in Juneau. I will add some additional thoughts.

Support pesticide bill
I am pleased the Senate has bill No. 27 which addresses public notification and access to information about pesticide use in the state of Alaska.

Tell kids not to steal
This letter is directed to the parents of the thief or thieves who continue to steal bicycles from Glacier Valley Elementary School.

We can do better protecting students
Recent letters to the editor asserting that the state provides accommodations for students with disabilities taking the exit exam miss the point. The academic accomplishments of a student with disabilities should not be measured solely based on a standardized test, with or without accommodations or modifications (the use of a calculator and/or other educational tools) if that student is unable to pass the test based solely on his or her disability. That is the system that we have now, which will deny deserving students a diploma this spring unless the Legislature or the courts intervene.

Peace rally a bust
I was at the peace rally on March 20, shivering in the setting sun as 900 or so names of the dead were read off by a cadre of middle-aged former activists and veterans. Occasionally, a name would choke an audible sob out of the readers' throat, but more often the names were read in such docility that they couldn't be heard over the passing cars.

Council supports students' efforts
The Juneau Tlingit & Haida Community Council, representing more than 5,000 members, has paid close attention to the racism issue plaguing schools. We discussed how prejudice and discrimination affected our own educational experiences and grappled with its longstanding and deep-rooted existence in our community and schools. We asked ourselves, as surely as many others have asked, where then do we begin?

U.S.-Chile fisheries talks to be held in capital city
Representatives of the Chilean government will be in Juneau at the end of July for fishing talks with U.S. officials.

Ground loop
Chris Hinkley, 14, surveys the damage to the model plane he and his mother, Maggie, were flying near their Switzer Creek area home on Tuesday evening.

Bond cut for woman charged in taxi assault
An 18-year-old woman charged with her husband in a Jan. 7 attack of Juneau cab driver Eric Drake smiled and waved at her 8-month-old son Tuesday, before a judge made it easier for her to get out of jail.

Charter school seeks more students
The nearly 60 children in the Juneau Community Charter School piled into a classroom Wednesday, sat on the carpeted floor and sang of dreams of harmony. They will be among the performers at the school's annual fund-raising arts gala on Friday, April 9.

JDHS band heads for Windy City
The Juneau-Douglas High School Festival Band endured a long journey fraught with peril.

Drop in bed-tax revenue stings visitors bureau
seanna O'sullivan / juneau empire Depending on hotel revenue: Lorene Palmer of the Juneau Convention and Visitors Bureau looks out at downtown Juneau from her office in the Sealaska Building on Wednesday.

City lawsuit alleges taxicab companies owe back-sales taxes
The owners of two Juneau taxi companies owe the city more than $100,000 in unpaid sales tax, interest and penalties, a lawsuit filed Tuesday morning alleges.

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

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

Spring Gala set for April 9 at ANB
The Juneau Community Charter School will hold its biggest fund-raiser of the year on April 9 at ANB Hall. The Spring for the Arts Gala will be a cabaret and dance. Doors will open and homemade food will be sold starting at 5:30 p.m. There will be a silent auction of donated art work as well.

Correction
Due to an editor's error, Sen. Bert Stedman's city of residence was misstated in a note at the end of a My Turn opinion column that ran in Tuesday's Empire. Stedman is from Sitka and his district includes Ketchikan.

Ravel's opera casts a magical transformation
As if she didn't have enough to think about with her sophomore course load at Juneau-Douglas High School, 16-year-old Giselle Stone began rehearsing nightly for the lead role of the boy in "L'enfant et les Sortileges" one week after she finished starring as Dorothy in the JDHS spring musical "The Wizard of Oz."

Discovery Southeast to hold its 15th auction
Discovery Southeast will auction an $18,500 bronze bear sculpture - the most expensive piece ever - at its 15th annual dinner and auction Friday.

Around Town
Today:Day of Quilting, Sewing and Good Fellowship, 10 a.m. every Wednesday, Resurrection Lutheran Church. Quilts donated to Lutheran World Relief. Details: 586-2380.

Photo: Stocking up
seanna o'sullivan / juneau

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

Correction
Due to incorrect information supplied to the Empire, an article stated the wrong measurements for a bronze bear sculpture featured at Discovery Southeast's auction Friday. The sculpture is 21 inches long, 13 inches wide and 17 inches tall.

On the Rails
A year ago this month I began planning a three-month European backpacking odyssey that required a great deal of focus and preparation to become the pseudo-transient transcontinental train traveler that I aspired to be.

Pets of the week
Big Boy is a man's cat, an amiable, easy-care shorthair He is a large, neutered male who is outgoing, friendly and playful. Kit-Kat is a beautiful young, spayed female with medium-length black hair and green eyes. She is outgoing, friendly, and loves to be petted.

Warranted exuberance
August McAllister, 9, gives a joyful jump over a representation of a compass aboard the Fairweather last week during a ferry open house.

Thank you
... for the rabies clinic

Singers sought for festival of Christian, Islamic, Jewish music
A festival of Christian, Islamic and Jewish music is being planned for the evening of April 25, 2004 at St. Paul's Church, across from the Mendenhall Mall turn-off. Entitled "A Celebration of the Children of Abraham," it will emphasize common origins and beliefs of the three faiths and feature chants and canons -sometimes layered and sung simultaneously - with audience participation.

Neighbors Digest
Staff Reports

Math winners
The Dzantik'i Heeni Middle School Mathcounts team, coached by longtime Mathcounts coach Mary Borthwick, right, took third at the state competition in Anchorage on March 6. Pictured, from left, retiring Alaska Society of Professional Engineers treasurer Don Dent, who presented awards to Gus Browning, Isaac Stark, Nick Waldo and Dylan Wenzlau.

Jennie Marie Rodenberg
Longtime Juneau resident Jennie Marie Rodenberg, 89, died March 27, 2004, in Juneau after a lengthy illness.

Jack Austin III
Former Juneau resident Jack Austin III, 46, died March 29, 2004, at his home in Ninilchik.

Tobacco tax is a deep well government uses for cash
I just got done reading the article on the state Web site about Gov. Murkowski introducing legislation calling for a $1-per-pack tax on cigarettes.

Empire editorial: State needs leadership to solve the budget gap
It's ironic that the goose that lays this state's golden eggs - oil money - is also one of the biggest hindrances as the Alaska Legislature wrestles with what could become a $700 million budget deficit in the next five years.

My Turn: Reinstating state income tax is essential to long-range plan
Bengt called again from Minnesota. He left Alaska just before the permanent fund dividend (PFD) program started. He said, "The idea of spending earnings from the permanent fund is not new. Indeed, the original intent of the fund was to set aside some income from nonrenewable resources to create a sustainable income for the future." I told him this has been so successful that earnings from the permanent fund now are the largest single source of income for Alaska. Yet the earnings are not counted as income. And we have essentially no taxes.

Juneau Parks and Rec coed volleyball standings
Standings, through matches of March 28, of the 2004 Juneau Department of Parks and Recreation's coed volleyball leagues.

Sports in Juneau
• Juneau Soccer Club - 2004 Juneau-Whitehorse Exchange Tournament: This tournament will use Arctic Winter Games indoor soccer rules and takes place Friday through Sunday at Dzantik'i Heeni Middle School and Floyd Dryden Middle School, with an outdoor game each day Adair-Kennedy Memorial Park.

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.

No state crowns for Southeast
There won't be any state high school basketball titles residing in Southeast for the next year. The defending state champion Hydaburg boys fell to a powerful Lumen Christi squad of Anchorage 49-33 on Saturday night in the Class 2A boys state tourney title game at Anchorage's Service High School.

Cavs' playoff hopes dwindle with loss to Mavs
DALLAS - Already the league's highest-scoring team, the Dallas Mavericks are trying to improve their playoff chances by doing more of what they do best.

Local State High School Basketball Champions
The past winners of the state high school basketball championships. Before 1973, the all-Alaska basketball championships featured a best-two-games-of-three series between the Southeast and Western Alaska champions.

Moving to a new level
Sarah Felix and Kimiko "Koko" Urata got started in synchronized swimming for different reasons, but more than five years later the Dzantik'i Heeni Middle School eighth-graders are ready to start the process that could eventually land them on the national team.

This Day in History
In Alaska: • In 1915, the $10 wolf bounty, passed by the Legislature, was approved by Gov. John F. A. Strong.

Wolf swipes chow, dies
ANCHORAGE - When Jan Perkins opened her porch door to find out what was causing such a racket in the middle of the night, the Chuathbaluk resident reached out to calm the large animal she thought was Muffy, the family Pyrenees.

Outside residents' dividend on the line
Almost 17,000 Alaskans living outside of the state received dividends from the Alaska Permanent Fund last year - removing about $19 million from the state's economy - and many may never return to live here.

This Day in History
In Alaska; in the nation.

House Finance Committee restores Medicaid
The House Finance Committee restored money previously cut by a subcommittee in the proposed state budget for Medicaid, a program that provides health care to low-income Alaskans.

Cuts could lead to cabin closures
State parks, cabins and historic sites face possible closure or reduced maintenance with proposed budget cuts in the Legislature. State Parks Director Gary Morrison said the Parks Division still is trying to figure out how to deal with proposed cuts of about $519,000. But cuts could bring the closure of the popular Cowee Meadow and Blue Mussel cabins at Point Bridget State Park north of Juneau next year.

Flying boat to serve this fall
A company that hopes to operate speedy seaplanes in Southeast Alaska this fall will hold a public meeting Thursday to address concerns about the new transportation method.

Murkowski invites drilling near ANWR
Gov. Frank Murkowski said Wednesday he will open lease sales in state waters offshore of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.

Pioneer Home rates may jump 5 percent
Residents of Alaska's Pioneer Homes could see a 5 percent rate increase if the state Health and Social Services commissioner approves proposed regulations. The program's director says the increase is necessary to bring the rates closer to the actual cost of care.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Alaska Digest
Staff and Wire reports

Growing up with 'L'enfant'
If you grow up in France, you will likely see "L'enfant et les Sortileges" when you are very young. "It's sort of a childhood play," said Philippe Damerval, a Juneau resident and a native of France, from Normandy and the French West Indies. "They usually show it in your town when you're in primary school."

Briefly
Local arts and entertainment news in brief.

Symphony celebrates French color
Juneau Symphony conductor Kyle Wiley Pickett says he neglects French music. By that, he means that in the five years he's worked with the symphony, his programs have been dominated with American, Russian and German works. His forays into French have been mostly through Impressionist composer Claude Debussy.

Cartoon: In the Swamp
Cartoon by local artist Toe.

'L'enfant' Triumphant
Who among us has not spoken to the animals and inanimate objects in our homes? And who among us would not be terrifed if these same objects broke into song one day and took us to task for our frailties and weaknesses - the things that make us human and inhumane?

April showers, First Friday flowers
Eight or 10 years ago, Juneau artist David Woodie stopped by the Alaska State Museum to see a touring narrative art exhibition. Anchorage Museum of History and Art curator Dave Nichols organized the show, which included works by Troy Dalton, Michael Ehle and Galen Hanson.

Movies: Where & when
Movie times and locations.

Be the frog, know the frog
For the exhilarating frog ballet scene in "L'enfant," opera choreographer Janice Hurley turned to a literal source of inspiration. She drove to the Wee Fishie Shoppe near Nugget Mall and sat in front of a tank of fire-bellied toads for 45 minutes.

Tengs leads Pre-Folk Festival jam at City Museum
Juneau musician/ice cream maker Tony Tengs and his friends will lead the Bob-Dylan-based acoustic Pre-Folk Festival Public Jam Session from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 3, at the Juneau-Douglas City Museum at Fourth and Main streets.

JDHS dance to host Showtime 2004
The Juneau-Douglas High School Dance Team will hold its annual community show, Showtime 2004, at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 8, in the high school gym.

Country singer Knapp returns to the Sandbar
Country singer Kenny Knapp has returned to the Sandbar, 2525 Industrial Boulevard, and will play from 9 p.m. to close Wednesdays through Sundays through May 30.

What's Happening
Schedule of upcoming local arts and entertainment events.

Friends of Kozlowski to hold benefit
Friends of Bill Kozlowski and his widow, Sierra Kaden, will host a benefit auction and concert at 7 p.m. Saturday, April 3, in the Hangar Ballroom.

A rare case of the blues
Juneau fingerpicking Texas blues guitarist Pat Henry doesn't record and rarely plays outside the Alaska Folk Festival and his wife's famous Starr Hill kitchen.

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