Candidates speak to budget, energy, states' rights
Alaska's budget, states' rights and energy policy were three main topics of a question-and-answer session of the four Republican gubernatorial candidates at the start of this weekend's state Republican convention, held in Juneau for the first time in two decades.

Eight groups honored by Coast Guard
The need to know how to survive in Juneau's wondrous surroundings beyond a rain jacket and pair of XtraTufs was endorsed by numerous visitors and volunteers attending Sunday's 2nd Annual Southeast Outdoor Safety Expo at the Centennial Hall.

Alaska's payphones to disappear soon
Sometimes the sound of progress is silence.

Returns filed, protestors rail on taxes
Vietnam veteran John Dunker pays his taxes. He's just not happy with how it's being spent.

Photos: Honoring the Earth

Photos: 4-H takes over Swampy Acres
Captions: Amber Dawn Cunningham leads Midnight Moonshine, a miniature horse, past 4-H club members learning to judge horses.

Photo: Candy making
Civil Air Patrol volunteer Kirstin Eyre makes a supply of cotton candy during the SoutheastAlaska Outdoor Safety Expo at Centennial Hall on Sunday.

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials reported:

Photo: Legislative delivery
Legislative affairs aide Roland Mueca brings ready-to-make boxes into the capital building Thursday afternoon as the legislative session begins to come to a close and legislative representatives and staff start the packing process. The 2010 session ended Sunday.

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

An A1 story on coastal zone management in Friday's Empire gave an incorrect first name for the senator sponsoring a bill on the topic. Sen. Donny Olson, R-Nome, sponsored the legislation.

A volunteer 'angel'
"Most anyone I speak to about Claudette describes her as 'Juneau's angel,' an angel walking among us, the most amazing person, so sweet, precious, giving, gracious, loving, and caring, and much more. ... She's the volunteer of the century. She just loves to give of her time. That's her passion - giving."

Thanks for donating time to our choir's fundraising dinner
The Alaska Youth Choir would like to sincerely thank the following businesses and individuals who generously donated their time and resources to our annual fundraising dinner held at the Moose Lodge and April 3.

Thanks for giving during the Scouting for Food drive
The Southeast Alaska Food Bank and the Boys Scouts and Cub Scouts of Juneau would like to thank the people of Juneau for their generosity during the annual "Scouting for Food" the non-perishable food drive held on April 10. Scouts and Cubs collected more than 10,000 pounds in that effort for the Food Bank and their participating members. The organizers of the event would also like to thank all the Scouts and Cubs who distributed collection bags, collected food then delivered it to the food bank, as well as the Scouts, leaders and others who weighed and sorted the food.

Senior menu for the week of April 19-23
Monday, April 19

Auke Bay Co-op Preschool to hold open house April 27
JUNEAU - Auke Bay Cooperative Preschool is having an open house for families who are considering enrolling their 3- to 5-year-old for the 2010-2011 school year.

Thanks for donating fleece blankets to Love INC clients
Love In the Name of Christ (INC) would like to thank Vicki Nelson and her students at Juneau-Douglas High School for donating 22 fleece blankets to give to our clients.

Thanks for choosing respect on March 31
On March 31, Gov. Sean Parnell created an opportunity for Alaskans across the state to stand up and speak out about Alaska's epidemic rates of domestic violence and sexual assault. In Juneau, AWARE partnered with the Governor's Office and hundreds of people who marched and rallied from the steps of the Capitol to Marine Park, all of us Alaskans Choosing Respect. This would not have been possible without the work of many many people choosing respect that day, and for weeks preceding.

Foundation accepts applications for funding support
JUNEAU - The Douglas-Dornan Foundation, a donor-advised fund of the Juneau Community Foundation, will accept applications for funding support until June 1. The foundation offers financial grants to organizations that benefit and enhance the health, education and welfare of individuals in Southeast Alaska.

Thanks for aiding Alaska Wildlife Alliance's rally
The Alaska Wildlife Alliance ( extends a big, happy thank you to everyone who helped make our recent event and rally, Managing Wildlife in Alaska: Predators, Prey and Politics, a huge success.

Juneau Skating Club presents 'Dance the Night Away' show
JUNEAU - The Juneau Skating Club will present a "Dance the Night Away on Ice" show at 7 p.m. Saturday, April 24, at Treadwell Arena.

Best Beginnings offers community grants
JUNEAU - Best Beginnings, a public-private partnership mobilizing people and resources to ensure all Alaska children begin school ready to succeed, is taking applications for Imagination Library and Early Childhood Partnerships, two community programs in Alaska that enhance the lives of young children and their families.

Empty Bowls fundraiser to be held next Sunday
JUNEAU - The Glory Hole will host its annual Empty Bowls fundraiser from 5 to 7 p.m. Sunday, April 25, at Centennial Hall.

Thanks for supporting Friends of the Flags
Friends of the Flags will soon be installing the 50 state flags on the light standards along Egan Drive from City Hall to 10th Street. We will start at 7 a.m. April 25. Please observe the traffic signs. A Juneau Police Department officer with a patrol car will help insure the safety of our volunteers who will be wearing bright fluorescent vests.

Venables to play Bob Bartlett for 106th birthday celebration
JUNEAU - Marking the 106th birthday of Bob Bartlett, Alaska's first senior U.S. Senator from 1959 to 1968, Alaska Living History will present a progam, "Remembering Bob Bartlett," at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Centennial Hall.

Congratulations to the League of Women Voters for 90 years
Congratulations League of Women Voters. This year marks its 90th year of activism as a political yet non-partisan civic organization. League is well known for thoroughly studying issues (frequently for several years) before adopting a position on them through consensus.

Pillars of America hosts first of three speakers
Jeff Yalden, former Mr. New Hampshire Male America and Male America's "Mr. Personality," will be the first speaker at the Glacier Valley Rotary Club's 18th annual Pillars of America Speaker Series, which starts on Wednesday at Centennial Hall.

Thanks for helping with the Discovery Southeast dinner and auction
Discovery Southeast extends our sincere thanks to all of those who helped to make our April 3 fundraising dinner and auction a great success. Your generous donations and efforts will help us to continue our work providing hands-on learning from nature for children, adults, students, and teachers through our programs and publications. Thank you Abby's Kitchen and Taku River Reds for contributing some of the food that we enjoyed. Special thanks to Kathy Hocker for the auction poster design, to Ron Clarke for serving as auctioneer, to Ursa Major and the Bellweathers for the music and entertainment, to Scott Burton for the sound system. Thanks to KTOO, KXLL and KRNN for extra publicity, to Art Matters for matting the 2010 auction poster at no charge, and to Hearthside Books, Rainy Retreat Books, the Observatory Book Store, and the Juneau Arts and Humanities Council for ticket sales.

Thank you, Ike's Fuel, for the uniforms
We are grateful for Ike's Fuel's generosity to provide uniforms for our trip to participate in an Amateur Athletic Union basketball tournament in Redding, Calif., this weekend, April 17-18.

Juneau Jumpers to hold spring show
At the Juneau Jumpers' 25th annual Spring Show, to be held at 7 p.m. April 30 at Glacier Valley Elementary School, performers will share a variety of skills including gymnastics, choreography, rope manipulation, team and individual routines.

Cone free, pain free, Ernie's puppy-ness returns
April 18. It has been over two months now since our 1-year-old Samoyed had what we hoped was a piece of dirt in his eye. That hope turned quickly into the reality that our puppy was unique in the worst way possible - glaucoma just after his first birthday.


Call me Earth-centric
Call it spring fever, call it mid-life crisis, but actually my whole life long I've been more than a little "Earth-centric." I don't know if the word is real, but a few years ago, I was trying to communicate my love for this blue-green ball we call home and this is what came to me.

Photo: Interfaith hug
Hindu leader Rajan Zed, right, who read the first Hindu opening prayer of the Alaska State Senate on April 9 in Juneau, meets afterward with Bishop Edward J. Burns in Burns' office at the Catholic Diocese of Juneau. Both leaders engage in interfaith dialogue.

Photos: Living history
Registered living historian Ron "LongWalker" Schramm visited Kris Gress' eighth-grade class on Friday at Floyd Dryden Middle School to present a living history presentation on mountain men, the fur trade and the opening of the West.

Local middle school students earn third at state math contest
JUNEAU - A team of Dzantik'I Heeni Middle School mathletes won the Southeast Regional Mathcounts Competition in February and traveled to Anchorage for the State Mathcounts Competition on March 20 - winning third.

Florence Marjorie Bennett
Hoonah and former Juneau resident Florence Marjorie Bennett died peacefully on April 9, 2010, after a brief illness in Juneau. She was 89.

Sheila Brena
Former Skagway resident and pioneer Alaskan Sheila Brena died peacefully early Saturday morning, April 10, 2010, at her home in Anchorage while surrounded by family and friends. She was 85.

Sylvia Martha Fleek
Longtime Douglas resident Sylvia Martha Fleek died Jan. 18, 2010, at her home. She was 93.

Jacklynne "Jackie" Lorensen
Juneau resident Jacklynne "Jackie" Lorensen lost her battle with breast cancer on Feb. 6, 2010, in Rochester, N.Y., surrounded by family. She was 63.

Leona Hettie "Nonie" Cramer
Former Juneau resident Leona Hettie (Jarvis) "Nonie" Cramer died April 11, 2010, in Rochester, Minn. She was 81.

Nuclear progress
The following editorial first appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer:

Outside editorial: Census count is just one big scare tactic
Maybe the Americans for Legal Immigration political action committee does not understand how the census works. That would explain its call for legislation to allow U.S. Census data to be used to "detect, detain and deport" illegal immigrants. The goal, according to ALIPAC leader William Gheen, is to keep illegal immigrants from "stealing" taxpayer resources and "diminishing representation" for legal Americans.

My turn: 2010 Census: Still time to make all Alaskans count
The famous quote by Baseball Hall of Famer Yogi Berra can be used to describe the 2010 Census: "It ain't over 'til it's over."

To John McCain's integrity: Rest In Peace
We are gathered here today to pay our final respects to John McCain's integrity.

Deficit reduction through tax reform
On April 15, every Washington policy wonk's fancy turns to thoughts of streamlining the tax code.

My turn: It's not about the cruise ships
Since the 2006 cruise ship ballot initiative passed, lines have opted for other destinations in Alaska. This has caused great concern among Alaskans, communities and businesses that rely on a vibrant cruise industry.

Warnings given by 'Father of Atomic Bomb'
FAIRFAX, Va. - During his 63 years (190467), J. Robert Oppenheimer engaged all the great transformative forces that roiled the 20th century: quantum physics, with its new understanding of the universe; the communist movement, with its alternative vision of capital and labor; and the Manhattan Project, with its atomic weapon that immediately threatened the world's security, sanctity and sanity.

My Turn: Reduced head tax offers 'tourist-friendly' image
The "State Head Tax" initiative was narrowly approved by 52 percent of voters in the 2006 primary election. Many voters erroneously thought communities could spend this as "free money" however they wished.

Toe toon
This week's toe toon.

Ethics investigation sought into former Palin aide
ANCHORAGE - An activist wants an ethics investigation into whether Mike Tibbles, a former chief of staff under Gov. Sarah Palin, is violating state ethics rules by lobbying for the Alaska Cruise Association.

Minor earthquake occurs in Cook Inlet
ANCHORAGE - A minor earthquake occurred in the Cook Inlet area.

Voters to decide whether to add 6 lawmakers
JUNEAU - Alaska voters will be asked in November to add six seats to the state Legislature.

Pebble opponents to visit London
ANCHORAGE - Officials with the Anglo American mining company can expect a visit next week in London from opponents of the Pebble Mine.

Legislature sends gun measure to governor
JUNEAU - The state Legislature has passed a measure exempting from federal gun regulations firearms, accessories and ammunition made and kept instate.

Man killed in standoff had air pistol
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage police say the man killed in a standoff earlier this week had an air pistol.

Nebraska company wins Fort Wainwright barracks bid
FAIRBANKS - An Omaha, Neb., company has been awarded a $38 million contract to design and build a 276-person barracks on Fort Wainwright.

Bill resetting minimum cigarette prices passes
JUNEAU - Cigarette prices in Alaska - particularly at large retailers and wholesale discounters - are likely to rise in a few months.

Big cleanup needed after Arctic Man
FAIRBANKS - Cleaning up for thousands of fans of the Arctic Man snowmachine race is a big job.

Capitol evacuated 3rd time in busy final weeks
JUNEAU - The Alaska Capitol was evacuated for the third time in two weeks, briefly putting lawmakers on hold Friday morning during the busy final days of this year's session.

Hospital receives test results of suspicious powder
JUNEAU - Bartlett Regional Hospital reopened an area of administrative offices Friday that had been quarantined due to the discovery of an unknown white powder from an established vendor's shipping box on Wednesday.

Fairbanks fugitive arrested in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE - A Fairbanks man wanted on a warrant for first-degree murder has been arrested in Anchorage.

Divers begin removing oil from Alaska shipwreck
JUNEAU - Specialized divers have begun removing oil from the Princess Kathleen shipwreck in Alaska after its tanks leaked and oil became trapped within the aging vessel.

Pick. Click. Give. edges toward permanence
ANCHORAGE - An innovative program designed to make philanthropic giving easier for Alaskans is one step closer to permanence.

Kings soccer sweeps in Falcons' first-ever series
Soccer balls move quicker on Fawn Mountain's new turf field than the dirt field that was recently replaced.

Boys' soccer Bears complete sweep
Early-season success for the Juneau-Douglas boys' soccer team continued Friday as the Crimson Bears beat West Valley 3-2 to send them back to Fairbanks winless on the weekend.

Rhea tranfers to SeattleU
Former Juneau-Douglas girls' basketball star Talisa Rhea has decided to transfer from Oregon State University to Seattle University to play her final season of women's college basketball.

Photo: Sweet tag in Bears' sweep
Juneau-Douglas shortstop Kalea Chapman tags out Ketchikan's Mylayla Martin as she tries to get back to third in the bottom of the fifth inning Saturday at Ketchikan's Dudley field. JDHS third baseman Gabbie Saldivar looks on behind Chapman. The Crimson Bears swept the season-opening series with the Kings, winning both games 5-3. A story appeared in Sunday's Juneau Empire sports section.

Photo: King Salmon Cup

JDHS places third in Sitka
Just three weeks into the season, the Juneau-Douglas track team finds itself improving with each meet.

Softball Bears crash Kings' home opener party
The Juneau-Douglas softball team picked up a pair of season-opening 5-3 wins over the Kings in a weekend series at Ketchikan.

Girls gain experience on the road in California
The Juneau-Douglas girls' soccer team returned Sunday from a difficult California road trip eager to get back on track.

Bi-partisan animal cruelty bill passes
JUNEAU - The Alaska Legislature passed legislation Saturday that strengthens the penalties for animal cruelty by making the act of bestiality punishable by law.

Commercial shrimpers join Prince William sound fishery
ANCHORAGE - For the first time in 19 years, commercial boats have joined the Prince William Sound shrimp fishery.

Budget nears approval in final hours
Alaska's House Finance Committee passed a capital budget Saturday evening that's grown substantially beyond what Gov. Sean Parnell submitted earlier in the session, and tens of millions more than the big increase passed earlier in the Senate.

Cruisehead tax cut passes
The House of Representatives voted to overturn most of the cruise ship head tax on the last day of the Legislative session, largely mirroring an earlier action by the Senate and paving the way for the tax rollback sought by the industry.

State critical of Yukon-Charley sport hunting ban
FAIRBANKS - A National Park Service decision to curtail hunting and trapping in three federal preserves has drawn heavy criticism from state officials.

House resurrects oil, gas tax bill
JUNEAU - The House shook up what had appeared to be a low-key trudge toward adjournment Sunday, eventually approving a bill - after first defeating it - to change Alaska's system of taxing oil and gas production together.

Lt. Gov. candidates split on gas line plan
Republicans trying to choose a lieutenant governor candidate may want to first choose their favored gas pipeline project.

Sourcing Pebble gold could be difficult
KENAI - The nation's second largest jeweler recently announced it will boycott gold from the proposed Pebble Mine in southwest Alaska, but that could be a hard pledge to keep.

Sewer, water financing problem for Alaska prison
ANCHORAGE - The cost of water and sewer systems could delay construction at the new $240 million Goose Creek prison.

Questions shroud fate of Alaska cruise tax bill
JUNEAU - Disagreement over the divvying-up of cruise ship passenger taxes threatened to torpedo a bill aimed at bringing more ships back to Alaska and settling a federal lawsuit over the state head tax.

Juneau unemployment rate inches down
Juneau's unemployment rate is inching down, declining from 7.3 percent in February to 7.1 percent last month.

Lawmakers jockey on last weekend
JUNEAU - Lawmakers jockeyed to finish bills - and in some cases, save them - as the session neared its scheduled close on Sunday.

Sen. Begich co-sponsors bill opposing airline carry-on fees
JUNEAU - Sen. Mark Begich, D-Alaska, co-sponsored a bill that could put an end to costly baggage fees.

Legislature promotes assistance for crime victims
JUNEAU - The Alaska Senate on Friday unanimously approved House Joint Resolution 48, encouraging the United States Congress to expand funding for crime victim services.

House passes omnibus capital bill
JUNEAU - The state House has approved an omnibus spending bill, adding to it on the way to the vote.

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