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Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Couple builds thriving business
ANCHORAGE - It took love for what they do and a melding of talents for Mike and Michele Robuck to grow the Alaska Mint from a one-coin operation to a diversified and thriving business.

Year-round operations off at Homer hatchery
KENAI - Year-round operations at a hatchery south of Homer are being suspended because of low prices for pink salmon.

Choice advocates do disservice to women
"Abortion-rights demonstrators sweep capital," announces the Empire on the front page Monday, April 26. And our illustrious citizens, Fran Ulmer, Susan Knowles and LaRae Jones are proud to attend.

Church, state are linked
I would like to comment on the issue of keeping church and state separate. First, the church is made up of people and the state is made up of people. The church is primarily an institution to address the spiritual and emotional needs of people.

Oil spill victims appreciate column
Thank you for your column on the ironic analogy between Captain Hazelwood and the man who shot the pipeline.

Empire offers positive coverage
My compliments to the Juneau Empire reporters and editorial staff for recent articles detailing some very positive local stories that might otherwise have escaped our attention.

Abortion demonstration helps explain activists
This letter is concerning the abortion demonstration article on Monday's front page. I may be a 19-year-old male conservative but, in a way, I am glad that the "throng" of women protested that their rights to abortion are being oppressed.

Don't blame mayor in Simpson's defense
While I can understand Ms. Simpson's frustration at being caught up in the Ruedirich troubles, it seems to me regrettable that she needs to find some room in her defense via blaming Mayor Botelho for suggesting a need for a new capitol.

It's Alaska: Make room for dogs
Obviously there is some tension between dog owners and the non-owners of Juneau. People need to realize that this is still Alaska. People here have the right to wear Xtra-tuffs to church, and let their dogs walk off-leash.

Empire lowers standards with Simpson piece
I read your disturbing piece ("Simpson e-mail ignites capital move squabble," April 25, 2004) over the Internet and felt compelled to write this letter.

Don't waste money on lobbyists
On April 15 the city of Juneau sent a "preliminary list" of capital improvement projects to our legislative delegation for possible state funding.

Don't equate Islam with terror
It was with great sadness I read the article in Sunday's paper regarding the new Fort Wainwright Combat Center. I understand the need for our military to receive terrorism training. What I don't understand, and find very distressing, is that my federal tax dollars are being spent on terrorist training that includes Islamic prayers being broadcast over the sound system at the combat center.

Simpson works to keep Juneau capital
There must be a new theory that says if you shoot all of your friends your enemies will leave you alone. Why else would your reporter try to make a story out of Paulette Simpson's e-mail?

Juneau needed school years ago
Many of the residents of Juneau's neighboring communities have been watching with great interest the struggles you are going through to build a new Valley high school.

Editorial overanalyzes
Your Sunday "Thumbs Down" editorial regarding the two e-mails that went from me to Randy Ruedrich suffers from underreporting and overanalyzing.

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

Corrections
The article on charter school funding in Tuesday's Empire misstated what the cap on school funding refers to. It is the maximum that a city can give the schools, not the minimum amount required by the state.

Spuhn Island project heats up
Developers proposing home lots on Spuhn Island say they hope the more neighbors know about their plans, the less threatened they will feel.

Charter school seeks funds to prevent closure
Juneau Community Charter School officials are requesting $50,000 from the city to prevent a possible closure in the 2005-2006 school year.

Guide goes after wounded brown bear, is charged, injured
After a wounded bear tore at his leg and arm Monday night on Admiralty Island, a licensed game guide was reported as "alert" in the Sitka Community Hospital.

Spring cleaning
Linda Orr of Ricker & Associates Property Management scrubs moss and grime off of the Goldbelt Place sign Tuesday.

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.

Corrections
Due to a reporter's error, an April 20 article in the Empire misstated the cost of having voters decide on a ballot question on whether to ban smoking in all public places in Juneau.

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

Mickey fans, 1931
The 1931 Capitol Theatre Mickey Mouse Club poses for a photo in front of the Palace Theatre on North Franklin Street, across from the Baranof Hotel.

Naming ceremony
The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium will hold a naming ceremony for its traditional Native-style canoe from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday at Sandy Beach in Douglas.

Group says schools should home in on dropout rate
A group of community members and educators meeting Tuesday to review the Juneau School District's priorities recommended focusing on dropouts, among several other topics.

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

Coeur seeks $20 million in aid for ports
The developer of the proposed Kensington gold mine is working toward a tax-exempt deal to build two ports in Berners Bay.

Pets of the Week
Echo is easy, not fussy about inside or out, Li'l Bit has wide face, knows the rules

Thank you
... for food drive success

Rielly, McAdoo to marry
Mattie Rielly and Joshua McAdoo of Juneau will be married at 4 p.m. May 1, 2004, at Mount Roberts Tramway. A reception will follow.

Hixon, Ross marry in Las Vegas
Jeannette A. Hixon of Yakutat and Troy R. Ross were married in a ceremony held at 2 p.m. April 7 at "A Special Memory Wedding Chapel," in Las Vegas, Nev. A reception followed at The Imperial Palace. Many friends and relatives of the couple were present and the couple would like to extend their thanks to all who attended.

Girl Scout program reconnects daughters, families
A year ago, Tongass Alaska Girl Scout Council entered into a collaborative relationship with Gastineau Human Services, Catholic Social Services and a number of faith-based entities in Juneau.

Senior Service Corps opens office
On March 17, 2004 Andrea Doll began her job as programs coordinator for the new National Senior Service Corps office in Juneau. The National Senior Service Corps (NSSC) "offers a great opportunity for seniors to be engaged in the community," explains Doll.

Sunset
The setting sun creates a kaleidoscope of colors over Gastineau Channel and the distant Chilkat Range earlier this month.

Neighbors Digest
Juneau's League of Women Voters is hosting a live radio forum/call-in on Thursday, April 29, on KTOO-FM. The program is entitled "America in the World: Iraq" and the number to call is 586-3636.

Drena Ann Austin
Drena Ann Austin, 47, Koot'-shee, Raven/Beaver of the Raven Bone House of Angoon, died April 23, 2004, at Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau after a brief battle with a rare type of cancer.

Joyce Myn Wolfe
Former Juneau resident Joyce Myn Wolfe, 57, died April 26, 2004, at the Teton County Nursing Home in Choteau, Mont., from natural causes

Empire editorial: Charter school needs city funds to thrive
Without help from the Juneau Assembly, and soon, the Juneau Community Charter School could face closure after the next school year.

Empire provided forum for Democratic critics
The cold call from the Empire reporter caught me completely off guard. I was in my kitchen washing breakfast dishes.

Alaska editorial: Hammond's income tax plan still won't work
This editorial appeared in Wednesday's Voice of the Times:

Legislators should step aside if they won't solve fiscal gap
I see in the newspapers around the state that our Legislature is working hard at finding ways to avoid addressing the state's fiscal problems.

Sports in Juneau
Juneau Golf Club annual meeting and banquet - Meet at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 29, at the Elks Lodge downtown for this event.

Padres rally in the 9th
SAN DIEGO - Back when they faced each other back home in Mexico, Miguel Ojeda was always left frustrated by Luis Ayala.

Eyes on a bigger prize
ANCHORAGE - Adolph Paul of Kipnuk had won the past two years, and he knew the competition would be gunning for him. So the 17-year-old junior from the Lower Kuskokwim School District trained intensely for about two weeks for the Native Youth Olympics. His event was the kneel jump, where kneeling athletes leap as far as they can to a standing position.

Sports Briefs
JUNEAU - The undefeated Juneau-Douglas High School boys and girls soccer teams leave town today for their first trip north this season.

Sports in Juneau
Juneau Freewheelers bicycle club - Tee Harbor Road Race: Meet at 6 p.m. at the Tee Harbor Fire Station for a 6:30 p.m. race start.

Jumpers qualify for tourney in Australia
Five Juneau girls have the chance to go Down Under this summer - thanks to their ability to jump over.

KTOO Fun Run
Results from the Southeast Road Runners club's KTOO Fun Run held Saturday in Juneau. Courses were 5 kilometers and 1 mile.

This Day in History
In Alaska: In 1949, Anchorage set a winter snowfall record of 104.3 inches.

Boy fends off brown bear with his fists
ANCHORAGE - A 15-year-old boy on a Southeast Alaska wilderness expedition for emotionally troubled youths woke up to find a 400-pound brown bear with a bad attitude sitting at his feet.

Fairbanks school aims to cut Native dropout rate
FAIRBANKS - Officials alarmed at high Alaska Native student dropout rates are proposing a charter school aimed at keeping students in school.

Breaking News: Dividend Guarantee of $1,111 stalls permafund proposal
A proposal to use some of the Alaska Permanent Fund for state government stalled in the House of Representatives Tuesday night over an amendment that would guarantee dividend checks of at least $1,111.

Northwest Digest
Staff and Wire reports

Junked-car scrapper gets Carhartt award
KETCHIKAN - Tom Konen's well-worn and well-scented bib overalls beat out the competition to win the Ugliest Carhartt Trade-in Contest.

House OKs endowment plan
Voters would get to decide whether to adopt a new method of managing the Alaska Permanent Fund in the November election under a proposal that passed the state House of Representatives on Monday.

Alaska Digest
staff and Wire reports

Legislation targets lobbyists who bully
A state lawmaker has caused a stir among lobbyists by proposing a bill to sanction lobbyists who bully or intimidate legislators.

Secretary of Interior touts state's energy potential during Juneau visit
U.S. Secretary of the Interior Gale Norton told a crowd of 130 Alaskans at the Baranof Hotel on Monday how the Bush administration is trying to work with the state to develop its natural resources.

House poised to take tough permanent fund vote
BREAKING NEWS: See corresponding story on Juneau Empire Homepage for results of the debate.

District, Palmer present arguments on district policy to fund advocacy
Alaska Public Offices Commissioners asked staff members Monday to take a closer look at the advice they gave the Juneau School Board before it appropriated $750 to disseminate information about the May 25 special election on the planned Dimond Park high school.

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