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Tuesday, July 17, 2007

To those against leopard hunt: What about bear hunts?
I have been following the exchange of letters concerning the African hunt recently concluded by Bill Adair and Dr. David Miller ("Skinning a cat the hard way," June 17).

National Geographic article got it right
National Geographic's recent Tongass story, mentioned by Brittany Retherford ("Magazine seeks 'truth' about Tongass," July 8) may not have quoted Forest Service or timber industry representatives, but it presented a balanced and accurate picture of the economic realities that shape people's lives and livelihoods in Southeast Alaska.

A few of the pitfalls facing major capital projects
The following is prompted by Tim Whiting's My Turn, "Where are Juneau's priorities," published July 6.

Cost increases not just the result of shipping
Price gouging does happen in Juneau. For example, gasoline at the cheapest place has been $3.35 per gallon, but according to news reports in the Lower 48, prices have dropped to $2.78 per gallon.

Renters' contribution to property taxes are minuscule
I assure Rebecca Smith ("Renters carry as much weight as property owners," June 21) that I had considered renters' indirect contribution to the property tax foundation. But because it's nebulous, it's much harder to identify.

Touch-screen voting a concern for democracy
I was the first in the state of Alaska to telephone my senator about this issue, and this was before the Help America Vote Act of 2002 was passed. I was stunned that nobody had even contemplated the dangers of touch-screen voting; our state wasn't exactly squeaky clean in terms of vote counting.

The evidence is in: Republicans to blame for war in Iraq
Stuart Cohen is right to credit Republicans with starting this stupid war in Iraq ("Disinformation on Iraq war's origins," July 9 Juneau Empire). Serious reporters and authors looked into the question.

Campground a refuge to Juneau's homeless
A recent article in the Juneau Empire about Thane Campground ("In Juneau, a community finds comfort living outside," June 17) provides a disturbingly unbalanced view of life at the site.

Newspaper's stance on moving fall session doesn't hold up
It was not a great surprise to read in the Anchorage Daily News that the paper is beating its drum for the fall special session to be held in Anchorage ("Next meeting: Oil Tax session should be within easy reach of Alaskans," published July 5).

No one should have to work in Juneau's 'plywood palace'
After reading the My Turn column submitted by Department of Administration Commissioner Annette Kreitzer regarding the Department of Labor building ("A vow to fix 'plywood palace,'" July 9) and hearing other recent media comments by Department of Labor and Workforce Development management, I could not stay silent.

No more Tongass roads: We have enough timber for all our needs
Why should we use our tax dollars to construct more roads in the Tongass National Forest to enable logging that will return only a fraction of that investment in stumpage fees, and will diminish our recreational opportunities and the productivity of our salmon streams in the process?

Voters care about more than property value
I routinely listen to KINY news on my way to work. Today I heard District 2 Assembly member Randy Wanamaker talking about his desire to remain in office and the important issues that he wants to take care of.

Photo: Laser shot
Derek Isturis takes Wal-Mart up on its offer of free laser tag Saturday at the Party Zone. The retailer advertised free laser tag to anyone who played on Saturday.

Woman works to turn fry bread into dough for Woosh.ji.een Dance Group
Atricia Makaily has a pretty simple list of ingredients for her fry bread: flour, sugar, water, milk, eggs, yeast, butter, salt.

Around Town

Photo: Mansion restoration
Mitch Williams of Van Pool Painting works Monday on a window in the kitchen of the Governor's Mansion. The mansion, built in 1912, is undergoing an extensive window restoration project this summer. Erika Fagerstrom, executive residence manager, said the project is expected to be completed in August.

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

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

Photo: Wait to skate
Cory Chrisman waits for a friend Sunday at the Pipeline Skate Park on Mendenhall Loop Road.

Photo: Bucking the rain
A man carrying an Ohio State Buckeye umbrella stands Monday at Marine Park, overlooking the Radiance of the Sea cruise ship as it rests in Gastineau Channel.

Governor signs two Elton bills into law
Gov. Sarah Palin on Monday signed into law two bills sponsored by Sen. Kim Elton, D-Juneau.

Planning commission member to run for Assembly
Longtime Juneau Planning Commission member Marshal Kendziorek announced he will run for Johan Dybdahl's areawide Assembly seat in the October city election.

District sets Tlingit curriculum
Sealaska Heritage Institute and the Juneau School District have co-produced what they say is the first broad-scale Tlingit language and culture curriculum that meets state academic and cultural standards.

Around Town

FAA opens door to airport upgrades
After years of work and nearly $4 million, the Federal Aviation Administration has given the Juneau International Airport its blessing to move ahead with expansion of its runway safety area and other projects.

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Edward Nielsen Sr.
Juneau resident Edward Christian Nielsen Sr. died on July 8, 2007, at his home in Mount Vernon, Wash. He was 84.

Outside editorial: Only one major league
It's no secret that Major League ballplayers are better than their minor league counterparts. That's why they're in "the Show." It's also why there's no annual All-Star game between best of the majors and the best of Triple A. No one wants to see an obvious mismatch between the best and the not-quite-so-good.

Outside Editorial: Bush's aid program needs time
When President Bush announced the Millennium Challenge initiative in 2002, it sounded like a promising new approach to foreign aid. The idea was to supply U.S. taxpayer dollars only to governments that could meet strict standards of efficiency and accountability.

My Turn: Litigation fixed so all losers pay
Alaska is well known for being unique. Even in the state's court system, Alaska has demonstrated a break from the Lower 48 by early on adopting a "loser pays" system for attorneys' fees as a check and balance against unnecessary litigation.

Alaska editorial: Anchorage should host second special session
The Legislature's special session to restore SeniorCare was a swift and efficient exercise, held within easy reach of half the state's population. Meeting away from the Capitol in Juneau was cheaper than doomsayers warned.

Alaska editorial: Anderson conviction a needed housecleaning
Guilty. Former state Rep. Tom Anderson of Anchorage now faces up to 115 years in a prison and a fine of perhaps $1.75 million following a July 9 pronouncement from a federal jury.

My Turn: The joys of a Lynn Canal highway
The song "Highway, Highway," sung by Joe Cocker, will have new meaning for the people of Juneau when the Lynn Canal highway is completed. In his song, Cocker sings "Highway, highway / Where you go I don't know / Maybe closer to my dreams, maybe far away / Take me today."

Ketchikan wins 14-under title
Hard hitting, a pair of strong pitchers and solid defense lifted Ketchikan to the Southeast Alaska Junior Olympic Fast-pitch 14-under Championship on Sunday at Melvin Park.

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.

Kenai Peninsula dubbed 'Alaska's playground'
Before two years is out, the phrase "Alaska's playground" will be synonymous with the Kenai Peninsula - at least that's what the Kenai Peninsula Tourism Marketing Council hopes.

Collision may have killed deformed whale
The unusually swollen tongue of a dead humpback whale may indicate that it perished after colliding with a blunt object in the waters of Southeast Alaska, scientists said Monday.

This Day in History
In Alaska, in the Nation and the World

Committee gives Stevens financial filing extension
The Senate Ethics Committee has given Sen. Ted Stevens a second extension for filing his annual financial disclosure statement after it asked him to make "a few technical clarifications," the senator's spokesman said Monday.

Mat-Su Republicans narrow down list for Kohring replacements
Republicans in the Matanuska-Susitna Valley have passed a short list of three finalists to replace Rep. Vic Kohring on to Gov. Sarah Palin.

Artist builds stained-glass window for Little Chapel
The Rev. Gary Barnes and his wife, ordained minister and Ilanka Cultural Director LaRue Barnes, have spent the last 31 years ministering.

Human jawbone found on solstice tour near Barrow
A group of tourists taking the midnight run out to Point Barrow hoped to see polar bears. It was foggy on June 21, the summer solstice, and what the group ended up seeing was not exactly what they had anticipated.

Mine provides economic boon for Eklutna
Gravel mining used to be a sore subject in Eklutna. But times have changed. This spring, large metal crushers began crunching out hundreds of tons of gravel per minute on the outskirts of the Athabascan village on the northeast edge of Anchorage.

Northwest Digest
A soldier who died in the Iraq war was remembered this weekend as a single mother who struggled to provide a better life for her two young sons, and a woman who found a sense of direction in the Army.

For bull-riding Wilsons, rodeo is in the genes
Watch a bull-riding rodeo this summer in Alaska, and don't be surprised if a boy named John David Wilson takes home the win.

Poll shows new low in Steven's popularity
A poll conducted this month by Ivan Moore shows that popular perception of 83-year-old Sen. Ted Stevens is near an all-time low among Anchorage voters.

Survival shows capture public interest
Few sane people want to visit a storm-tossed Bering Sea, the sizzling Sahara Desert and Canada's Northwest Territories in January. Experiencing them from a comfortable chair in front of a flat-screen television, however, is all the rage.

Northwest Digest
Judge: Flawed data used in coho decision, Lightning-caused fires blacken Oregon

This Day in History
In Alaska, in the Nation and the World

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