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Wednesday, July 9, 2003

BP to halt production at Badami
FAIRBANKS - BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc. will halt production Aug. 1 on the Badami oil field, a once-promising North Slope site about 25 miles east of Prudhoe Bay. Expected to yield 30,000 barrels of oil a day, production at Badami slowed to 1,300 barrels a day in recent years and the oil giant decided to cut its losses.

Land-and-shoot not in wildlife's interest
Against public opinion, Gov. Frank Murkowski has signed a bill allowing wolves to be hunted and killed from airplanes.

Religious freedom comes from Christian heritage
The critical thinkers who replied to my letter both falsely described the pledge as being "forced" upon schoolchildren. Wrong! The pledge is voluntary, and should remain as is. Those who disagree should be more tolerant and respect the diversity of those who wish to include "Under God."

Price is high when shopping locally
I am writing in response to all the letters regarding shopping locally. As a single mother of two, let me set a few things straight about shopping locally.

Express route needs hospital stop
I am a big fan of Capital Transit, but I would like to know why there is only local bus service to the hospital area.

Former state workers can find good jobs
It always surprises me that you don't hear much about the new employment opportunities that follow the initial shock of state employee downsizing. It's true that no one likes the anxiety and uncertainty of the job hunt, but, realistically, qualified people will find employment in the private sector.

Photo: A jump for joy
Taking advantage of Tuesday's sunny weather, Ashley Montoya, 13, jumps from the city's floating dock in front of Marine Park as her friends Cassandra Jerue, 13, center, and Brook Delgoto, 13, swim.

Assembly must decide who gets funds: schools or nonprofits
At tonight's Finance Committee meeting, Juneau Assembly members will grapple with how to answer funding requests from the Juneau School District and area nonprofit groups. The requests total more than the city has to give. "I wish I had a solution, but I think we are just going to have to downsize," said City Manager Rod Swope, adding that tough financial conversations, like the one he anticipates tonight, will continue for the next few years. The Finance Committee meeting is scheduled for 5 p.m. today in Assembly chambers.

This Day in History
In 1898, Jefferson Randolph "Soapy" Smith, gambler and character of ill-repute, was shot and killed in Skagway.

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

Finance Committee funds nonprofits, provides for schools
Faced with too many budget requests Tuesday night and not enough money to fund them, the Finance Committee of the Juneau Assembly chose to fully fund some area nonprofits and to provide partial funding to the Juneau School District. "(Nonprofits) create the tax base," said Assembly member Dale Anderson. "If we have no tax base we can't support our community. Without a tax base, without income generating a sales tax revenue, we are lost." Perseverance Theatre, the Juneau Economic Development Council, Juneau Jazz and Classics and the Southeast Alaska Guidance Association (SAGA) will receive a total of $174,800.

Clarification
An article in Sunday's Empire on Thursday's Marine Park Plaza grand opening celebration failed to identify the funding source for the $6.1 million project.

Photos: Trying to catch the wind
Harrison Masters, 6, peeks through his pirate's ship kite Monday at Eagle Beach. Masters and his father, Mark, and brother, Benjamin, 2, gave it their best, but light winds kept their ship grounded.

Photo: Making way for wheelchairs
Steve Ricci, left, and Peter Cross work Monday on the Boy Scout Camp Trail. The project to make the trail wheelchair-accessible is nearly complete. The 1.5-mile trail begins at about mile 27 Glacier Highway, near the Herbert River.

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

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

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

Planning Commission rejects DOT's Douglas Bridge plan
The Juneau Planning Commission voted 4-4 Tuesday night to reject the state Department of Transportation's plans to make renovations to the Douglas Bridge and nearby intersections to help ease traffic congestion. The commission's split decision sends a recommendation to the Juneau Assembly not to move forward with the project. "With a vote to not recommend approval, the planning commission did not agree with our project," said DOT project planner Chris Morrow.

Photo: Juneau waterfront, 1940
This colored postcard shows the Juneau waterfront and ships in 1940. During this time, Juneau's waterfront housed saloons and brothels, cold storage buildings, marine supply outlets, warehouses, fish processing facilities and various military installations.

North Carolina man dies in climbing fall
State troopers on Monday recovered the body of a North Carolina man who died Saturday in a climbing accident on the Juneau Icefield. Troopers on Tuesday morning identified the deceased as Jeffrey Sutton, 29, an Army captain from Fayetteville, N.C., who was transferring to the U.S. Coast Guard. Officials at Fort Bragg in Fayetteville confirmed a Jeffrey Sutton was stationed there but provided no other information. According to a trooper statement, Sutton and Army Capt. Arleigh William Dean, 29, of Juneau were climbing the west Taku Tower at 3:30 p.m. Saturday when Sutton's rope was cut on a rock as he was about a third of the way down. He fell to the tower base.

Friends remember Mr. Fourth of July
Though former Juneau Mayor Larry Parker did not spend his last few Fourth of Julys in town, those who remember him still associate him with the holiday's festivities. Parker, who died a week before Independence Day at the age of 84, was a founding member of Juneau's July 4 fireworks committee, and was involved in the pyrotechnics for more than 50 of the celebrations.

Thank you
... for library prizes; ...for raptor center gift; ...for help with the car rally

ASAP may help soften blow to some seniors who are losing Longevity Bonus
Eligible seniors will receive their final Longevity Bonus checks in August 2003. With that check, they will receive information about a new program called the Alaska Senior Assistance Program (ASAP). The ASAP is not a replacement for the Longevity Bonus, but it will help soften the blow to some seniors who are losing the bonus.

Parks, Cunningham marry
Sarah Parks of Gig Harbor, Wash., and Trent Cunningham of Juneau were married in a ceremony on June 20 at the Seattle Washington Temple.

Photo: Bridget Cove sunset
Shorebirds are silhouetted by the setting sun at Bridget Cove last April. The Chilkat Mountains are in the distance. Low tide exposes large areas of sandy and rocky flats at the cove, along with several stream channels that are hidden when the water is higher.

Student recognition
Weaver graduates; Messing earns degree; Turner honored; Smiley on honor roll; Thomas-Garrigues honored; Rider receives Schneider Merit Award; Ann Northrip inducted into Psi Chi at Linfield; Noreen graduates cum laude with bachelor's; Juneau residents named to East Oregon dean's list; Davis ends wilderness emergency medical technician course; Shine awarded bachelor of arts in English; Weston makes Western State dean's list; Blake Rider makes UAF chancellor's list; Tanna Peters honored; Bauer on dean's list; Barril, Burnett enrol at Universal Technical

Cadiente, Baxter to marry
Christa Cadiente and Corey Baxter of Juneau will unite in marriage at 6 p.m. on Friday, July 11, at Chapel by the Lake. A reception will follow immediately at the ANB Hall.

Becker, Germain to marry
Kristy Becker and Greg Germain of Juneau will be married in a ceremony planned for Nov. 22 at the Northern Light United Church.

Neighbors Briefs
Marine Park shelter rentals transferred; Newborn screening program dedication; Pesticide license classes; Goldpanning results are in; Library prizes; Derr leaves ASHNHA

Pets of the week
Ren is a small dog, a purebred border collie. She is a well-behaved 7-year-old with a sweet disposition. Tucker is a cuddler and a lap-sitter who never met a person or a cat he didn't like.

Kaplor, Fortwengler to wed
Karen Ann Kaplor of Kent, Wash., and Kevin Alexander Fortwengler of Kent, Wash., will be married in a ceremony at 4 p.m., July 19, at Skater's Cabin in Juneau. A reception will follow at 6 p.m. at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, 5100 Glacier Highway.

Fred C. Morgan Sr.
Juneau resident Fred C. Morgan Sr., 90, Neechg a Raven from the Takdeintaan Clan, died June 2, 2003, at Bartlett Regional Hospital.

Louis Orvil Nelson
Haines resident Louis Orvil Nelson, 89, died in his home on July 4, 2003, after a yearlong battle with cancer.

Ruth Lokke
Ruth Lokke, 80, died July 5, 2003, while at Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital in Sitka.

My Turn: Juneau viewed as an also-ran
There used to be a skinny guy with black hair in Juneau who could be seen pushing a very large woman around town in a wheelchair. I felt sorry for that guy, who sometimes seemed out of breath, because he had quite a job to do with all of the downtown hills and traffic dangers.

Alaska Editorial: Fishing, construction industries looking up
At least two segments of Alaska's economy are looking strong - construction contracts are holding at a record high level and the market for Bristol Bay red salmon appears promising. Bradner's Alaska Economic Report predicts that an unprecedented combination of factors could make Bristol Bay fishermen's paychecks significantly larger than they have been in recent years.

Blind musher signs up for 2004 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race
BEND, Ore. - A high-ranking official with the Iditarod sled dog race said a sight-impaired musher from Redmond should be allowed to compete in the 2004 race.

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

A sunny night run
It was a hot time for a Midsummer Night 10K run. With the temperature above 70 degrees and only a few clouds in the sky, nearly 80 runners showed up for a rare night race hosted by the Southeast Road Runners club Tuesday night at False Outer Point. There was a 10-kilometer race (6.2 miles) for the older runners, and a one-mile race for the kids and some adults.

Boozer to play in summer leagues
Former Juneau-Douglas High School basketball star Carlos Boozer will get a first-hand chance to see if all the LeBron James hype is warranted when the Cleveland Cavaliers teammates play their first games together in two NBA summer leagues over the next two weeks. The Cavaliers will play in the six-team Pepsi Pro Summer League today through July 12 in Orlando, Fla. Then they travel to Boston for the 10-team Reebok Pro Summer League from July 14-20.

Healy man first to register for Yukon Quest
FAIRBANKS - The 2004 Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race picked up 11 contenders Wednesday, the first day to enter the 21st annual test of dog and man between Fairbanks and Whitehorse, Yukon Territory. The 1,026-mile race starts Feb. 14 in Fairbanks.

King James reigns in pro hoops debut
ORLANDO, Fla. - LeBron James dominated the competition to the delight of his audience, then eyeballed the scoreboard for his own satisfaction. With 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists Tuesday night, the most talked-about high school draft pick in NBA history thrilled a huge crowd that waited several hours to see him make his pro basketball debut. But he said what he'll remember most is the outcome of this summer league game - Cleveland Cavaliers 107, Orlando Magic 80.

Sidelines: LeBron James Show set to open in Orlando
Nothing but raves. That's the early word on the LeBron James Show. The curtain lifts tonight when the Cleveland Cavaliers play their first summer league game in Orlando, Fla. It will be a typical over-the-top production that seems to follow James everywhere. More than 10,000 fans are expected, and as of Monday, 108 media credentials had been issued.

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

Ferries to land security funding
ANCHORAGE - Alaska's state ferry system is in line to receive $2.65 million in federal port security funds to buy such equipment as surveillance cameras and explosives detection devices for nine terminals, marine highway officials said Monday. The state will use the funds for enhancements at terminals in Bellingham, Wash., Whittier, Homer, Juneau, Ketchikan, Haines, Sitka, Skagway and Petersburg, said Jack Meyers, operations manager of the Alaska Marine Highway System.

Haines, Skagway want private ferry
The communities of Haines and Skagway are mounting a campaign to bring a private fast ferry system to Lynn Canal, a move the towns' officials say is in response to inadequate service. Officials in the two communities said they are frustrated with unfulfilled promises by the state to provide Lynn Canal communities with fast ferry service to Juneau. "We're fed up with the Department of Transportation," said Jan Wrentmore, a business owner in Haines who serves on the Haines Lynn Canal Transportation Committee.

Students get rare glimpse of ANWR on field trip
GALBRAITH LAKE - Willie Via used a break during his first hike into the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to watch a distant group of Dall sheep traverse a mountainside. "I was always kind of interested in seeing the area," the student from Fairbanks' Randy Smith Middle School said while perched on a plateau just inside the refuge's boundary. "It's on the national news and stuff because of the oil debate." Via and fellow students received a rare chance this month to spend several days in the region, exploring the Arctic and visiting with scientists who have studied it.

Knowles will run for U.S. Senate in 2004
Democrat Tony Knowles, a two-term Alaska governor and former mayor of Anchorage, will run for a U.S. Senate seat in 2004, he said. In a long-anticipated announcement, the 60-year-old Knowles said Alaska needs a strong voice in both political parties defending the state in Washington, D.C. Knowles is seeking the seat now held by Sen. Lisa Murkowski, an Anchorage Republican appointed by her father, Gov. Frank Murkowski, last year after he took office and resigned his Senate seat.

Yukon fish run outdoes forecast
FAIRBANKS - More salmon than expected are showing up in the Yukon River. Department of Fish and Game biologists said they planned for another poor year, but with the run half completed, the return is much stronger than predicted. Area biologist Tracy Lingnau said fishermen have reported improvement in the number and quality of fish.

Appeals court rejects borough hiring preference ordinance
ANCHORAGE - A North Slope Borough law giving Native Americans preference for borough jobs has been rejected by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. In a decision released Tuesday, a three-judge panel ruled that the law violates the Alaska Constitution's guarantee of equal protection. The decision affirms a decision by U.S. District Court Judge John Sedwick, who heard the case in Fairbanks.

State Briefs
Explosion injures three in Juneau home; Tongass gets new forest supervisor; Woman's body pulled from Cook Inlet; Thieves target laptop computers; Trooper car smashed during traffic stop

State Briefs
Aerospace firm plans to build facility in Kenai; Troller sinks near Kruzof Island; Police chief demotion protested with manure; Body may be missing Florida woman; Eagle River woman dies in motorcycle wreck

Alaska Railroad updates track in corridor between Anchorage, Wasilla
ANCHORAGE - The Alaska Railroad Corp. is replacing the bolted rail that it has previously used with continuously welded rail on the corridor between Anchorage and Wasilla. "This is big stuff," Terry Hinman, manager of welded rail for the railroad, told the Alaska Journal of Commerce. "It is a huge step forward for this railroad."

State allocates $7 million to struggling fishing communities
At one time, the boardwalk fishing community of Pelican numbered more than 250 people and received more than $200,000 per year from the state's fisheries business tax. A steady decline in the fishing industry has dropped the town's share of the tax as low as $9,000 four years ago, and its population has shrunk to 115, said Mayor Kathie Wasserman. But on Monday, Pelican received a check for $92,641 from the state. The money is part of a $7 million attempt to ease the plight of Alaska's fishing towns. The state has allocated federal salmon disaster funds to 63 communities that have lost fisheries business tax revenue. Eighteen Southeast communities are receiving checks ranging from $500 for Angoon, Coffman Cove, Kasaan, Skagway, Tenakee Springs and Thorne Bay, to about $277,000 for Petersburg.

New halibut subsistence fishery draws 8,500 people
About 8,500 people have obtained certificates for halibut subsistence fishing since they became available in mid-May, and federal and tribal officials say for the most part the program has run smoothly. "Most people are real excited about it, said Gordon Jackson, Tlingit-Haida Central Council business and economic development manager. "There's a lot of people applying for it. For the most part I think everybody's following all the rules and regulations pretty nicely."

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