Wednesday, April 23, 2003

Delta gold-mine construction could get started in December
ANCHORAGE - If final permits are cleared for the project, construction could begin in December on the $250 million Pogo gold mine development near Delta. The boards of Teck Cominco Ltd. and Sumitomo Metal Mining Co., which own Pogo, are expected to make a final decision to go ahead with the project in September, according to Karl Hanneman, Alaska regional manager for Teck-Pogo Inc., which is managing development of the mine.

If salmon are marketed, they need protection
Gov. Murkowski has announced the state is spending millions of dollars to promote marketing of our wild salmon. Declaring that the environment where our fish are reared is clean and pure is key in the promotion. Consumers should feel confident when they buy Alaska salmon, they are buying a product that is pure and free of harmful chemicals.

Juneau dissent is healthy to explore
People who equate criticism of the Bush administration with being anti-America are proving only that they do not have any understanding of what this country is about. Dissent is written into the U.S. Constitution and has been supported by all of the philosophers and statesmen since.

Real patriots love and support America's kids
Are we a nation of family values? Children the most important thing? No child left behind? You betcha! Or maybe not. Schools nationwide have to shut down early this year (some teachers volunteering to work for free for two weeks in Portland, Ore., for example). Let's consider our true intentions as a nation.

At least he served
I would like to respond to Tony Tengs' My Turn in Monday's paper and say that I would be fine with calling the Department of Defense the War Department because it would not sway my support for our military at all. And when I say "our military" I mean every part of the government that has to do with the military, including our president who is the commander and chief of it.

Assembly backs commission in Duran Construction case
The Juneau Assembly late Monday upheld the Planning Commission's January decision requiring Duran Construction Co. to obtain a permit to process topsoil and store construction equipment on the company's Lemon Creek-area property. The Assembly's vote was 6-2 against the company. A motion to grant a stay to enable the company to work during any 30 days between now and the end of July failed 5-3.

'Best Management Practices' aim to combat tourism problems
When the cruise ships sail into town and the buses and helicopters start moving, Juneau residents will have an opportunity to make their own noise for local tour operators. The Tourism Best Management Practices program will be in effect again this year, and residents are invited to voice their concerns with local tour companies on a public comment phone line and e-mail address.

Renowned crime expert sought by nat'l TV while testifying in Juneau
Perched on the side of a bed in a downtown Juneau hotel room, forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden breathlessly attempted to juggle two telephones. Baden, chief forensic pathologist for the New York State Police, had just finished testifying in the third murder trial of 20-year-old Jose "Che" Mateu of Ketchikan. And broadcast news programs wanted his comments on the latest developments in the Laci Peterson case.

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

Planning Commission OKs mining ordinance change
The city's review of a mine's socio-economic impact on Juneau was a main focus at a Juneau Planning Commission hearing Tuesday night. The Juneau Assembly's Land Committee has proposed a slate of revisions to the city's mining ordinance to expedite permitting in rural areas. Under the proposal, a new rural mine would be an allowable use and wouldn't be subject to permitting conditions covered by state and federal environmental reviews.

Photo: Portrait of a portrait, 1940
Juneau photographer Trevor Davis holds his well-known image, "Lights of Juneau," in 1940.

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

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

Play: To Bhutan and back
A family visit to Bhutan, a small kingdom in the Himalayas, has inspired a local eighth-grader to write a play about friendship. "The Four Friends" by Libby Parker, 13, is Auke Bay Elementary's fifth-grade spring musical, to be performed for the public at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in the school gym. The suggested donation is $3 a person or $10 a family. "I never really planned to write it," Libby said at a recent rehearsal. "But when I found out we were going to Bhutan, it all evolved."

Southeast narcotics team confiscates cocaine, methadone in 4 busts
State drug enforcement officers are waiting to arrest at least five suspects police said are connected with shipments of cocaine, marijuana and methadone recently confiscated in Juneau. The Southeast Alaska Narcotics Enforcement Team, known as SEANET, recently seized more than an ounce of cocaine, almost a pound of marijuana and more than 70 tablets of methadone in four separate operations.

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

Amsterdam opens cruise season May 5
The Holland America ship Amsterdam will bring a full load of 1,380 visitors when it sails into Juneau on May 5 to start the 2003 cruise ship season, said company spokesman Erik Elvejord. How many passengers come for the rest of the season, though, depends on whether bookings pick up between now and the fast-approaching summer tourism season.

Photo: Hands-on quilting
Judy Hall helps her granddaughter, Jadyn, 6, tie a quilt together Tuesday evening at Glacier Valley Elementary School. Fourth-grader Charlie Johnson, 10, helps, too.

The public library's private advocate
When Nancy Ferrell was growing up in a broken home in Milwaukee, the public library there was her haven."It was a place of enjoyment for me ... and a place for information," Ferrell said. Her childhood escape turned into a lifetime of library use and promotion - a passion that led her to receive the Library Advocacy Award at the Alaska Library Association at the association's convention here in March.

Young writers, illustrators in 9th annual contest
Young authors and illustrators in kindergarten through third grade recently participated in the Ninth Annual Reading Rainbow Young Writers and Illustrators contest. Sponsored by local public television station KTOO-TV in cooperation with the nationally acclaimed PBS children's series, Reading Rainbow, the contest encourages young children to write and illustrate their own stories.

Local liquor stores working with MADD, teens to raise awareness
Last Saturday, on the occasion of National Youth Service Weekend, local teens worked with the Juneau Alcohol Beverage Retailers Association to educate customers about Alaska's alcohol laws through a project called "Sticker Shock." These youth and their parents entered local stores to attach warning stickers on the bags in which alcohol purchases are placed. The stickers warn customers of the penalties for adults who provide alcohol to minors: Up to $10,000 in fines and up to 1 year in jail for a first offense.

Neighbors Briefs
Annual 4-H tree sale; Wine-tasting cruise to benefit Red Cross; Scholarships awarded; Animals in need; Juneau Golf Club annual meeting

Thank you
... for the help; ... for matching grant

Photo: Riding an Easter breeze
A sailboat plies Gastineau Channel on Easter Sunday.

Pet of the week
Baka is a black lab mix -- but what went into the mix is a mystery. He has a bushy tail and a smooth, black coat with lots of feathers.

Forest Service brings smiles, food, appliances to Glory Hole
Forest Service employees from the Alaska Region Regional Office in Juneau wanted to make a difference for the men, women and children that use the Glory Hole's services. A two-week food drive and some hints from the Glory Hole staff enabled the Forest Service to supply some much-needed foodstuffs, appliances and even some cash to the shelter.

Connie MacLean
Former Juneau resident Connie MacLean, 91, died April 10, 2003, in Coupeville, Wash.

Jeraldine Rose (Thompson) Thomsen
Former Juneau resident Jeraldine Rose (Thompson) Thomsen, 68, died April 7, 2003, in Seattle, Wash., after suffering a heart attack.

Roberta 'Bobbi' Jean Rodgers
Juneau resident and longtime Alaskan Roberta "Bobbi" Jean Rodgers, 63, died April 3, 2003, in Juneau after a short bout with cancer.

Mary Anderson Wilson
Hoonah resident Mary Anderson Wilson, 92, died April 13, 2003, in Hoonah.

My Turn: Bills provide stable price structure
There has been a lot of talk in the media lately about the effects of House Bill 57/Senate Bill 50 and the motives of those who stand most to profit from its success. The bill has been called the "Agrium Bill" and, while as a manufacturer that uses gas in the products it makes Agrium does benefit from this bill, it needs to be made clear this is a bill that assists all manufacturers of value-added products throughout Alaska.

My Turn: America's freedom is historically owed to many dissenting voices
In response to Jody Liliedahl's letter of April 18, I would like to voice a few concerns. First off, being anti-Bush is not anti-American. Having an opinion that killing thousands of innocent people is wrong is not anti-American either. America is all about expressing opinions.

My Turn: Alyeska Central School not unique
The voters of Alaska made it abundantly clear that they want a more scaled-down, efficient state government to deliver essential state services. The governor has proposed closing the Alyeska Central School (ACS) to accomplish these goals and to terminate a state service that duplicates the new and creative efforts of local school districts to offer correspondence courses.

Sports in Juneau
Information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

This time the Duke pick wasn't a dud
CLEVELAND - Before rookie forward Carlos Boozer of Juneau was taken by the Cleveland Cavaliers in the 2002 NBA Draft, the Duke University pipeline to Cleveland wasn't panning out. Former Duke star forward Danny Ferry was acquired from the Los Angeles Clippers along with Reggie Williams for Ron Harper in one of the most controversial trades in the 33-year history of the franchise and played for the Cavs from 1990-2000.

Sidelines: Alaska fullback waits for NFL call
A sporting legend looms on the NFL draft board in 2003. A few years back Sports Illustrated put together lists of the 50 greatest sports figures for each of the 50 states. So talented was the Texas list that Pro Football Hall of Fame cornerback Dick "Night Train" Lane ranked a modest 17th. Illinois and Ohio placed a couple of legendary coaches at 17 - Knute Rockne for Illinois and Woody Hayes for Ohio. Michigan and New York placed a couple of boxing champions at 17 - Thomas Hearns for Michigan and Gene Tunney for New York. Thoroughbred champion Man O' War placed 17th for Kentucky.

Empire Cup Standings
Here are the standings of the Empire Cup running series through the KTOO Fun Run held April 19. Races included in the standings so far are the Sweetheart Relay, Flanagan's Run, the Glacier 10K and the KTOO Fun Run.

Sports in Juneau
Information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

Wilkens paces SE runners at Boston Marathon
Christian P. Wilkens of Douglas posted the fastest time by a Southeast Alaska resident during the 107th Boston Marathon on Monday. Wilkens, 27, covered the 26.2-mile course in an official time of 3 hours, 0 minutes, 56 seconds to finish in 632nd place overall, 603rd among all male runners and 435th among men in the open division (age 18-39).

System could revolutionize small-town garbage woes
HAINES - A new garbage composting system here is being watched closely by small towns around the nation as a possible solution to solid waste disposal. Haines Sanitation's "in-vessel" composting system is still a few weeks away from full operation, but has the potential to reduce by two-thirds the volume of garbage and sewage sludge buried at the landfill, company president Lynda Walker said. Eventually, it also will produce salable compost.

Senator wants board to have more authority on wolf control
A state senator is advocating a measure that would allow the state Board of Game to authorize airborne predator-control programs without backing of the governor. Freshman Sen. Ralph Seekins, a Fairbanks Republican, told the Senate Judiciary Committee he wants the Board of Game to allow private hunters to shoot predators with the help of aircraft if predator control is necessary.

Turning wasted fish into food
Gulf of Alaska trawl fishermen pulled more than 3 million pounds of halibut bycatch last year, and they had to throw all of the dead fish overboard. Trevor Jones, chairman of the Alaska Food Coalition, says he has a better idea for what to do with all that fish. He wants to donate it to food banks and soup kitchens around the state, but the law won't let him.

Senate bill would eliminate credit scoring by insurance companies
Using personal credit ratings to help determine how much a policy- holder pays for home and automobile insurance makes premiums more equitable and does not target low-income consumers, an insurance industry representative said Tuesday during a Senate hearing. Sam Sorich, with the National Association of Independent Insurers, told the Senate Labor and Commerce Committee that insurance companies historically have used factors such as driving record, car type, age and driving experience to determine the insurance risk of a person.

Realtors pan bill on dual-agent disclosure
ANCHORAGE - A bill that would change disclosure requirements when one agent or brokerage represents the buyer and seller in a real estate transaction has drawn sharp criticism from some members of the industry. The bill, introduced by Rep. Norman Rokeberg, an Anchorage Republican, would change a law that says as soon as a brokerage firm is aware it represents both a buyer and a seller, it must obtain written consent from both parties to act as a "dual agent." The same would be true for an independent real estate agent.

Senate budget could avoid controversial cuts
JUNEAU - Senate Republicans may preserve the longevity bonus for seniors in next year's operating budget, GOP leaders say. But a compromise may add eligibility requirements to exclude seniors who don't rely on the bonuses. "We're looking at trying to craft something that gets the votes, number one, and looks out for the seniors of very modest means," said Senate President Gene Therriault, a North Pole Republican.

State Briefs
'Bowling For Columbine' held over for 2 nights; Assembly to discuss attorney recruitment; Glacier center closes Thursdays, Fridays; Mining ordinance meeting tonight; City meet on SARS; School bond issue supporters meet; State considers ending subsidy on ethanol

State and Local Briefs
Seat belt helps woman survive crash; State sues over WorldCom losses; Residents invited to give input on waterfront; Pillars series starts today; Recount of Anchorage mayoral ballots begins; Klawock women charged in pull-tab scam; Boy's autopsy mirrors drowned brother's

NOAA publishes rules for halibut subsistence fishing
Residents of rural communities and Alaska Native tribal groups with a tradition of subsistence fishing will receive an allowance of 20 halibut per day under new federal halibut subsistence fishing regulations that will take effect May 15. The regulations are an attempt to codify what many Alaskans were doing already: fishing halibut for personal use and in some cases exceeding the personal use catch limit of two per day. While Alaska does have regulated subsistence fisheries, mainly for salmon, halibut has never been included.

Photo: Restoring a Raven pole
Northwest Coast carver and historian Steve Brown attaches a golf umbrella to the Raven Stealing The Sun totem pole in Ketchikan to protect it while doing some restoration work.

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