Thursday, May 4, 2006

Business Digest
Children with hands covered in paint may be a common sight during afternoons downtown.

Education funding should be priority
As a Juneau parent with two elementary kids in public school, I have been watching the debate in the Legislature concerning adequate education funding.

Insidious fisheries legislation
How would you like to enter a poker game rigged against you because the bigger bankrolls could buy extra cards from the deck?

Road is a wasteful desecration
On behalf of all the members of the Auk Kwaan, the original settlers of the Juneau area, I wish to express our strong opposition to extending the highway from Echo Cove, around Berners Bay, to a proposed ferry terminal at the Katzehin River Delta where travelers must board a shuttle ferry to reach Skagway or Haines.

How about offering guaranteed gas prices?
The big oil companies would like Alaska to commit to a tax rate for the next 30 years. In this way, they could better predict their long-range expenses, making it much easier for them to plan accordingly.

The road is a dead-end investment
I am writing this letter so that we can have one more person on record that supports spending our finite state resources on more important needs than another road to nowhere.

City leaders need to tighten their belts
What's going on at City Hall? Last year the real property tax assessments went up 16 percent and the Assembly reduced the mill rate from 12 mills to 11.17 mills, a decrease of about 7 percent.

Our Alaska schools are in dire need
At the April 18 Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting, the Assembly voted to contribute $36.7 million of public tax money toward support of public schools on the Kenai Peninsula.

Channel dredging dropped
The state's public works budget has grown to $2.37 billion, but a multimillion-dollar project proposed by the governor to dredge Gastineau Channel has been cut out.

Photos: A lot to see
Above, Eliza Walker, left, a 10-year-old student in Elissa Borges' fourth-grade class at Gastineau Elementary School, shows University of Alaska biology student Ryia Waldern specimens she netted Tuesday in the freshwater pond next to the airport dike trail as part of annual Seaweek activities.

Around Town
Around town is a listing of nonprofit local events

Cruising South Franklin Street
If one is accustomed to crossing the English Channel by ferry, then perhaps a little rocking back and forth on a blustery spring day in Alaska's Inside Passage is like the usual morning tea.

Sports arena in funding bill
A Juneau nonprofit organization could get $4 million from the state to build an indoor sports field.

School bus routes may change
Some elementary school students may have an easier time getting to school next year.

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

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

Images from another time: Best face forward
Dr. Maynard Miller points to the Mendenhall Glacier's east face on Aug. 30, 1985.

Photo: Traffic stopped
Juneau Police Department Lt. Kris Sell walks past a rollover accident Wednesday.

Latte competition brewing
Next winter Juneau shoppers can add a Starbucks Frappuccino to what's on their list to get at Fred Meyer, when the retailer ads a coffee outlet to its expanded superstore.

'Bong Hits' to Supreme Court?
The Juneau School Board is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn a court ruling that supported a former student's right to display a banner that read "Bong Hits 4 Jesus."

First lady teaches kids about safety
Nancy Murkowski, mother of a U.S. senator and the wife of Alaska's governor, spent Wednesday morning as a matriarchal figure for Harborview Elementary School counselor Michele Ricci's first-grade class.

Avalanche expert warns of danger on local trails
Juneau avalanche expert Bill Glude is warning Juneau residents to avoid the Flume Trail, Thane Road and other urban avalanche run-out zones because of dangerous new snow conditions.

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

Neighbors mailbox
You've got mail, neighbor

Student recognition
Recognizing Juneau's outstanding youth

Local doctor gives big to youth
Longtime Juneau resident and physician Henry Akiyama donated $100,000 to the Juneau Community Foundation to establish the Akiyama Family Fund.

Savage and Miller to wed
LaStar Savage and Dan Miller of Juneau will be married June 3 in Juneau. Friends and family will be invited to a reception following the ceremony.

This I Believe: The healing power of music and one shared experience
I believe in the healing power of music. I'm a singer.

Nina Dee Mollett
Juneau resident Nina Dee Mollett, 55, formerly of Fairbanks, died April 29, 2006, at University Medical Center in Tucson, Ariz.

My Turn: Solve two problems with Gastineau Channel access
I read with interest Ed Fairbanks' March 24, 2006, column on his experiences while dredging Gastineau Channel. His observations in 1958 were telling.

Legislature's support points to inevitable road
As the regular 2006 legislative session winds down, the issue of fair taxation on Alaska's most lucrative industry clearly continues to occupy the majority of the Legislature's time and attention.

Alaska editorial: Marijuana fight diverts attention from real issues
What should have been a simple bill to help control Alaska's methamphetamine epidemic has provoked a battle that is distracting lawmakers from more important business.

My Turn: Consumer protections were misrepresented in editorial
After some consideration, and against my better judgment, I am compelled to respond to a recent Anchorage Daily News editorial reprinted in the Juneau Empire (Alaska editorial, April 16).

Alaska editorial: Government branches should work together on tax, pipeline contract
Wrangling over a proposed North Slope gas pipeline deal and oil industry tax has had an odd effect on the state's government - it makes branches want to pretend the others don't exist.

Crimson Bears softball team stays perfect with sweep of North Pole
With dominant pitching, solid defense and strong hitting, the Juneau-Douglas High School softball team swept a Wednesday doubleheader form host North Pole.

Juneau-Douglas girls soccer upends Kenai
The Juneau-Douglas High School girls soccer team continued its undefeated season Wednesday with a 4-1 victory over host Kenai Central.

Bears' slide continues in loss to the Kardinals
The Juneau-Douglas High School boys soccer team's recent struggles continued Wednesday at Kenai Central.

Alaska High School Track and Field best performances
2006 State Bests

Runners' Corner: Sturdy shoes key for runners
Spring is here, and it's time to dust off those running shoes and hit the roads and trails again. But wait a minute.

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.

Bears win their 7th straight game
The Juneau-Douglas High School baseball team successfully opened a key four-game road series Wednesday with a 9-6 win over host Ketchikan.

This Day in History
In Alaska, the nation, and the world

House increases school funding
In the biggest debate on education funding this session, the Alaska House on Wednesday passed a bill that gives school districts in smaller cities and rural areas an additional $35 million.

LeConte route limited to days
The state plans to turn the LeConte ferry into a day boat this summer and pull it from three communities that require more than a 12-hour round trip from Juneau - Sitka, Kake and Pelican.

Conference promotes Native HIV/AIDS education
American Indians and Alaska Natives need to be armed with the latest information about HIV/AIDS and provided with culturally sensitive models of treatment to effectively fight the latest threat to their survival.

Senate OKs historic $2.4 billion capital budget
The Alaska Senate voted 20-O to approve an unprecedented $2.37 billion in capital spending on Wednesday.

Ketchikan veneer mill sold
The Ketchikan Gateway Borough has completed the $9 million sale of a veneer mill and 379 acres of Ward Cove property to a group that hopes to have the plant operating by Sept. 1.

Officials say too few wolves killed to control population
Wildlife officials say the number of wolves collected in the state's aerial wolf-control program this winter were less than half of what was expected.

This Day in History
In Alaska, the nation and the world

State surplus mostly spent
This year's $1.4 billion revenue surplus will have dwindled to $52 million once legislators have finished spending and shuffling around the oil-wealth money, according to the Legislative Finance Division.

Alaska Digest
Jury selection began Wednesday in the murder trial of a man accused in the shooting death of a Soldotna woman 21 years ago.

Alaska Digest
Staff reports from around the state

Briefly
Food Challenge VI deadline eight days away

What's happening
Events around town

Cinema Guide
What's playing at the box office

Folk singer strums and steps across the U.S.A.
Folk singer strums and steps across the U.S.A.

First Friday
Elise Tomlinson took a year off from exhibiting after her last show, last summer at Heritage Coffee.

Play examines five lives on Sept. 12, 2001
The somewhat-absurd, somewhat-existential play "Recent Tragic Events" finds five acquaintances in the same place much of America was on Sept. 12, 2001: in front of the television.

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