Business Digest
Darlene's House of Gifts to carry new inventory

Tax us, but don't cut morning buses
I am a property owner who has just written the Juneau Assembly asking them to tax me more, and I hope my fellow readers will do the same. I read in Friday's Juneau Empire that some of the cuts anticipated in the next CBJ budget are the delay of half-hour bus service until 11 a.m. and charging "people with disabilities and senior citizens $12 for monthly bus passes and single cash fare." These two groups currently ride free.

Alaska unsafe
I was planning on visiting Juneau and Tenekee Springs with my granddaughter, a long way from our home in Oklahoma. With the murder of my cousin, Maggie Wigen, as yet unsolved, we surely do not feel safe.

Dog owners can take responsibility
This e-mail is written in response to Mr. Bob Armstrong's "My Turn: Dogs need leashes at wetlands to protect migratory bird

Where's the money coming from?
OK, my question is for the city. What are you thinking? On Friday, April 9, on page one of the Juneau Empire the headline reads "City's deficit may force cuts in bus service," then continues to page 10, "Budget: City manager proposes cutting more than 11 full-time positions."

Hypocrites opposing development
I would like to respond to the "Cut fossil fuels" letter that was in the Friday, April 9, Empire. It's funny how people who: are opposed to logging like to live in wood houses; are opposed to mining like to wear gold jewelry; opposed to fishing yet like to eat fish; opposed to hunting but enjoy eating most of the food in the animal kingdom; and oppose drilling for oil but love the fact that their homes are heated and have electricity.

Trail fits with airport
In response to Mr. Larry Knecht's letter on Friday, April 9 ("Juneau has a right to a safe airport"), I telephoned him and introduced myself to discuss some of the points he had raised about the Empire's April 5 "Juneau Color" feature about me. I want to clear up any misconceptions his letter may have caused to other readers.

Break the cycle of war
What a surprise. Now that we've captured Saddam Hussein, we're fighting against Muqtada al-Sadr, a Shiite priest, and instead of fighting only Saddam's Sunni hold-outs, we've opened a second front, fighting members of Iraq's Shiite majority.

Talk of principles, not people
It is interesting to me that so many opinions concerning peace are steeped in hatred. I wonder why someone's views must include the names of fellow humans?

Last-minute tax filers need to be on lookout for mistakes
Shopping for a tax preparer isn't like shopping for Christmas presents.

Juneau man lost in Harlequin Lake
Divers from Juneau were scheduled to fly to Harlequin Lake this morning to recover the body of a Juneau man presumed dead after falling through the ice Saturday, Alaska State Troopers reported.

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

Assembly OKs convenience-store expansion
Convenience stores will be allowed to nearly double in size, upsetting some who worry about safety and alcohol use, the Juneau Assembly decided Monday.

Kate Troll takes on Kilimanjaro to raise funds for fighting cancer
Kate Troll knows that the difficulty of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro doesn't begin to approach the ordeal of a cancer patient, but she hopes to honor several friends who died of the disease when she tackles the mountain this fall.

Tax help is still available online
IRS spokeswoman Judy Monahan in Seattle said online help will be available at as long as people need it.

Slush cup marks end of season
Eaglecrest Ski Area had a sunny end to a sometimes-stormy season Sunday, and dozens of skiers went out with a splash.

Around Town
Today Valley Toastmasters meeting, 6:10 a.m. every Tuesday, Henry's Restaurant. Public invited. Details: Jim, 789-3074.

Photography cruise to feature local expert
Longtime Juneau resident and professional photographer Mark Kelley has been on a cruise once in his life. But that cruise was enough to convince him that locals make the best guides on cruise ships.

City bans skaters in park during tourist visits
Despite opposition from some skaters, the Juneau Assembly unanimously passed an ordinance Monday prohibiting skateboards and similar devices from the Marine Park Plaza when tourist buses and vans are there.

Sign of spring
Jan Waatti, a volunteer worker at the Thane Public Campground, paints the campground sign Thursday. The campground opens April 15. People attending the Alaska Folk Festival can stay at the site at no cost until then, according to Jason Layton, the campground caretaker.

National groundswell spurs lesbian couple to wed
After more than 12 years together, Juneau residents Karen Wood and Darla Madden have decided to take the next big step in their relationship and marry, even though they aren't allowed to legally in Alaska.

Around Town
Today: Low Impact Exercise, 10 a.m., Juneau Senior Center and Valley Senior Center. Details: 463-6175.

Let the music begin
Eric McDowell of Juneau talks to the audience during his performance on the first night of the 30th Alaska Folk Festival on Monday at Centennial Hall.

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

No-show male strippers leave owner of bar in a bind
Robby Harris said disappointing women was the last thing he wanted to do four months ago when he booked the Men of Playgirl to appear at his bar last week.

Diane Ruth Fawcett
Juneau resident Diane Ruth Fawcett, 41, died April 10, 2004, in Juneau.

Babies don't need fluoride, and we get plenty
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, uoride is not recommended at all for infants under six months old.

Sustenance bill is just a ploy that favors urban fishermen
A laska Senate Bill No. 318, "An act relating to a preference for Alaska residents in the consumptive uses of fish and game," has recently attracted the attention of commercial fishermen. If passed, the new law will raise allocations of fish and game for "sustenance" to a "very high preference" over all other allocations and hurt commercial fishermen.

Charter schools are a cost-effective alternative
Charter schools in Alaska offer a bright opportunity for parents who are looking for the best for their children. Alaska's charter school law, enacted in 1995, allows parents, teachers and community members to organize independent schools that provide innovative educational opportunities for Alaska's youth.

Alaska editorial: Act like a sovereign state, not a colony to oil producers
Rep. Eric Croft wants Alaskans to vote on whether to impose a reserves tax on North Slope natural gas if the major oil companies won't move it to market.

Cavs close out home schedule with a win
CLEVELAND - LeBron James yanked off his game jersey, kicked off his sneakers and walked to midcourt in his socks to hand the items over to some lucky fans.

Local Briefs
Juneau Jumpers head to U.S. World Team qualifier

Sports in Juneau
UPCOMING EVENTS: Juneau-Douglas High School boys and girls soccer - Spring Fever event: The Crimson Bear boys and girls host teams from Chugiak, Palmer and Pagosa Springs (Colo.) at Adair-Kennedy Memorial Park.

Juneau grad, Phillies scout
When Chad Bentz made his major league debut last week as a Montreal Expos relief pitcher, he became the second Alaskan and first from Juneau to make it to the big leagues as a player.

Defending champs avoid falling into 0-3 hole
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - A lot of determination and a little luck got the defending champion New Jersey Devils back into their first-round playoff series with the Philadelphia Flyers.

Sports in Juneau
UPCOMING EVENTS: Juneau-Douglas High School boys and girls soccer - Spring Fever event: The Crimson Bear boys and girls host teams from Chugiak, Palmer and Pagosa Springs (Colo.) at Adair-Kennedy Memorial Park.

Mets' Valent makes the most of opportunity
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - Cliff Floyd's injury gave Eric Valent an opportunity. Valent hit his first major league home run, a go-ahead, two-run drive that backed Tom Glavine and led the New York Mets over the Montreal Expos 4-1 Sunday.

Herring eggs mark spring's arrival in SE
KETCHIKAN - Crocuses and chocolate bunnies might mark the end of winter in some parts of the nation, but herring eggs announce spring's arrival in Southeast Alaska.

Northwest Digest
Kenai processor plans major dock expansion: KENAI - A Kenai fish processor said he plans to expand his Kenai River dock in such a way to enable his company to catch a new wave in the commercial fishing industry.

UAF attempting to build robot vehicle
ANCHORAGE - Slow and steady wins the race. And the Arctic Tortoise has a chance at victory - next time. That's the philosophy of Rick Ruhkick, team leader of a project at the University of Alaska's Geophysical Institute in Fairbanks which is preparing for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency "Grand Challenge."

This Day in History
In Alaska: In 1959, the Detroit '59'ers canceled plans to settle on homesteads on the Kenai Peninsula and traveled to sites in Susitna and Fairbanks instead.

This Day in History
In Alaska: In 1901, the city of Nome was incorporated as a first-class municipality.

Alaska Digest
Staff and Wire reports

Former judge makes ukulele CD in support of library
HOMER - Little did Pat Boone, an actor and singer who made female hearts flutter in the 1950s, know that his smooth singing style and artful strumming of a baritone ukulele would one day inspire a fund-raising effort for Homer's new public library.

State questions facts in wolf ads
ANCHORAGE - The public opinion battle over killing Alaska wolves from the air continues, even as the programs wind down with the end of winter.

Buoy collection
Buoys hang from a hand rail on the fish tender Rogue late last week at Casey Moran boat harbor in Ketchikan.

GOP chairman faces state ethics probe
ANCHORAGE - The state attorney general's office is investigating possible ethics law violations by Republican Party Chairman Randy Ruedrich when he worked last year as one of three members of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission.

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