Thursday, August 21, 2003

Also 'homeland security'
As we watch the funding for many social service programs decrease, or in some cases, totally disappear, the needful ones, those that have come to rely upon those programs, neither decrease nor disappear.

Tough crowd
In response to Mr. Lowry's letter on the postal service let me relate something that occurred years ago when I lived in North Pole.

Sad transition
I will never understand why people think they have to destroy other people's property, especially in Juneau. I was born and raised here and Juneau used to be a pretty safe community.

A fair tobacco tax
The Juneau assembly will meet Monday, Aug. 25, to hear public comment on increasing tobacco tax. If passed, Juneau tobacco tax would be raised to the same level that Anchorage residents are paying. The money is expected to help meet the shortfall in funds for community health programs.

Downtown drunkenness
I read the Juneau Empire article regarding the recent crime spree in the downtown area, and what surprises me the most is how surprised the police, Kirby Day and this town seem to be in response to this sort of behavior.

Half mass times velocity
All of this discussion about speed on the Egan autobahn is a subterfuge to distract us from the real issue. What the police should be monitoring is kinetic energy, not speed.

Task force discusses skateboard guidelines
The city Skateboard Task Force on Tuesday discussed establishing certain areas of Marine Park for skateboarding and setting up safety guidelines for those using the area. The task force was established in July, when the Juneau Assembly tabled an ordinance that would have made the park off limits to skateboarders during the summer. Marine Park is the last legal place to skateboard downtown.

Photo: The Capitol about 50 years ago
A caption that accompanied this photo in the Aug. 13 edition of the Empire mistakenly dated the historical postcard of the Federal and Territorial Building to 1940. Museum sources said the photograph was taken in the mid-1950s and produced as a postcard in the late 1950s.

Sweets for the sweet
In an edible version of Shakespeare's "sweets for the sweet," the Tongass Alaska Girl Scout Council has scheduled a dessert auction as one of the attractions accompanying its fund-raising salmon bake on Aug. 30. Local homemakers, experienced amateur bakers, and professional chefs are all contributing to the event in a veritable sugar extravaganza. The all-you-can-eat salmon, chicken and barbecued pork dinner will be held at the Gold Creek Salmon Bake, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., Aug. 30. Door prizes including boxes of Girl Scout cookies will be part of the fun.

Marauders' memories
Roy Matsumoto and Grant Hirobayashi came to Juneau to fish with Matsumoto's daughter Fumi and her family. But the old friends, both World War II veterans of the 5307th Composite Unit, known as Merrill's Marauders, can't help but let the conversation stray from fishing when they get together. "It was a considerable hardship, and I know what he went through and he knows what I went through," said Hirobayashi of the men's U.S. Army experience in India and Burma in 1943 and 1944.

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

Assembly to consider Phase 2 of Dryden upgrade
Some teachers at Floyd Dryden Middle School will start the school year Wednesday with butcher's paper and newsprint for whiteboards, but the school's current renovations will be substantially complete, school officials and contractors said. The 30-year-old school in the Mendenhall Valley is undergoing a $5.4 million renovation that compressed two summers worth of work into one, with a bit left over this fall. The state is paying for 70 percent of the project.

High school renovation is close to completion
Juneau-Douglas High School, in the midst of major renovations, should be ready for students when classes start next Wednesday, but some work will continue after school or on the weekends, city and school officials said. "We'll be operable and substantially complete," city project architect Gary Gillette said of JDHS on Wednesday. "In some cases, there may not be carpet on the floor. They'll just wait for a long weekend, pull out the furniture and carpet it." JDHS Principal Deb Morse said some classrooms' furnishings haven't been moved in yet, but will be by the start of school. The nurse's office and a computer-assisted drafting room won't be ready until a few days after school starts, but other rooms have been prepared for those functions, she said.

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

Photo: Inspiration for a totem, 1935
Taken in 1935, this photograph shows Auke Lake during the winter. According to Auk Kwaan legend, Auk-da-shaw lived beneath what is now Auke Lake, said Rosa Miller, an Auk Kwaan elder.

What the test scores mean
Some Alaska schools that did not meet targets for progress under the federal No Child Left Behind Act are nonetheless "high-proficiency," Education Commissioner Roger Sampson said in an interview last week. This afternoon in Anchorage the state was scheduled to release the list of schools that didn't meet proficiency targets in English and math. "We're asking parents to find out why the schools are on or not on the list," Sampson said last week.

This Day in History
In 1938, the first scheduled Pan American air express flight from Seattle to Juneau landed at Auke Bay.

Sternwheeler in Southeast for first time in 100 years
The Empress of the North may not have tennis courts or pools or a 24-hour buffet table, but operators of the sternwheeler, which made its debut docking in Juneau on Wednesday, hope the ship's old-time riverboat feel will give it a special niche in Alaska's cruise industry. "We don't want to show them just the beauty of Alaska, but also its history," the ship's captain, Bob Wengel, told some Juneau residents, including Mayor Sally Smith, at a reception on the boat. "This is the best way to see Alaska. It really is," he added.

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

Girl Scout Council Recipes
Gregg's Lemon Pie; Killer Ginger Cookies; Tiramisu; Samoa Kiss Brownies

Eight local schools don't meet state proficiency targets
Eight of 12 Juneau schools are on a state list of schools that did not meet proficiency targets in English and math - or just didn't have enough students taking the tests - in the school year 2002-03. Under the federal No Child Left Behind Act, schools must show progress toward meeting the goal that all students be proficient in English and math by 2014. This is the first year for the lists. Schools were judged to be making adequate progress if at least 64 percent of their students, as a whole and in various subgroups, were proficient in English and 55 percent in math.

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

This Day in History
In 1954, the Lost River Mine near Seward unloaded 183 tons of tin in Seattle, the largest shipment ever taken from a U.S. tin mine.

The time to think about the Pioneers Home is right now
Every senior citizen who is 65 or older and who has been an Alaska resident for at least one year is advised to submit an application to the Pioneers Home - even if they do not plan on moving there in the next ten or 20 years. "Don't wait until a crisis hits, such as falling and breaking your hip," said Virginia Smiley, Alaska Longevity Programs Manager. "Sometimes there is a lengthy waiting list and it's good to be on the Inactive List just in case the need arises."

Pets of the week
Big guy is really a teddy bear inside; Buck gets along with everybody, everything

Neighbors Briefs
Cellular One incentive; Vaccinate Juneau Kids; Bunnetts head tour group; Christian Youth Exchange; Girl Scouts in song; Computer classes for beginners; Shrine sponsors retreat; Waterfowl hunting regs; Adopt-A-Classroom

Photo: Big Sister, Little Sister
Big Sister Cathy Jeans and Little Sister Ally wait to board their raft for the Big Brothers Big Sisters Mendenhall River rafting trip.

Thank you ... for the donation
The Juneau Boys and Girls Club (BGC) would like to extend great appreciation to the Fred Meyer Foundation/Juneau Advisory Committee for their donation of $300 to sponsor the Club's Summer Open Gym. With the contributed funds, the club was able to purchase sports equipment, program supplies such as Gatorade and water, as well as attendance incentives such as granola bars and fruit snacks.

My Turn: Dream team: Ted and Tony
Some politicians quoted in the press have recently raised concerns that the power of Sen. Ted Stevens might somehow be diminished if former Gov. Tony Knowles is elected to the U.S. Senate. As one who has known, worked with and followed the careers of these talented and dedicated individuals, I think the two would make a strong, effective team for Alaska.

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

Bear runners strong at Bartlett; will head to Kayhi this weekend
Juneau-Douglas High School cross-country runners Carly Craig, Tyler Dinnan, Wesley Dinnan, Tristan Knutson-Lombardo and Greta Thibodeau joined forces to take sixth place at last Saturday's Bartlett Relays in Anchorage. The Crimson Bear quintet covered the 2-mile course in 1 hour, 2 minutes, 25 seconds - the sum of their individual times. A team from Chugiak High School won in 1:00:34. The event featured water hazards, hay bales and logs on a muddy course.

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

Photo: Twice as nice
The Juneau Xtratuffs U-14 girls soccer team won its second straight State Cup title on Aug. 10 in Palmer. The double-overtime, shootout victory earned the team a berth at the Far West Regional Championships in Spokane, Wash., next June.

Report: Alaska fails to meet standards for child protection
Alaska does a poor job of finding permanent placement of children in foster care and there is not enough face-to-face contact between case workers and families, according to a federal review of the state's child protection services. Alaska was among 14 states that failed in every category under new and more rigorous tests that measure not only the bureaucratic process but how children and families are actually being served. In many instances, Alaska fell short, the review showed.

Alaska Briefs
David Stone files to run for Assembly; Senior aid program draws 11,000 applicants; Caribou quota reduced; Murkowski turns down Greenpeace invitation; Stevens: Bridge, railroad expansion top priorities

Chignik salmon fishermen say they're better off under co-op
ANCHORAGE - Commercial salmon fishermen participating in the Chignik co-op report that they are better off financially, according to a University of Alaska Anchorage research report. The Chignik fishery last season switched to a system in which most of the 100 seiners stopped competing against one another and agreed to fish cooperatively. The new system allowed many of the Chignik fishermen to mothball most of their boats and deliver fresher fish to the docks for higher prices with less expense.

Alaska Briefs
Soldier returns home; Murkowski files written Roadless comments; Leman turns down cruise ship initiative; Ketchikan borough rejects cruise ship tax

New ship initiative floated
Sponsors of a wide-ranging cruise ship ballot initiative plan to submit a revised version of the proposal to the state today, just two days after the original was rejected by Lt. Gov. Loren Leman. Based on a recommendation by state Attorney General Gregg Renkes, Leman denied certification of the initiative Tuesday because the proposal was not confined to a single general subject. Renkes also noted that a provision of the initiative could establish a dedicated fund, which is in violation of the Alaska Constitution.

282 Alaska schools fall short of federal standards
ANCHORAGE - State Education Commissioner Roger Sampson said Wednesday that 282 schools in Alaska - nearly 58 percent - failed to make adequate yearly progress under federal standards set out in the No Child Left Behind Act. But Sampson urged parents to review why their child's school may be on the list. It might be because just one segment of the school population did not meet a standard required by law, he said. "There are some very high performing schools that did not make adequate yearly progress," Sampson said. "They are some of our best schools. Even our best schools can improve."

Fairbanks mayor salvages sister-city relationship by agreeing to visit Italy
FAIRBANKS - Mayor Steve Thompson apparently has avoided a minor international incident by agreeing to visit a sister city in Italy next month. A proposed September goodwill trip by a contingent of Fairbanks residents to its sister city of Fanano, Italy, fell apart earlier this year, leading to an impassioned response from the mayor of the town. Fanano is the hometown of Fairbanks' founding father Felix Pedro. Thompson declared it a sister city of Fairbanks, and 32 people from the town arrived in July last year to take part in Golden Days, the annual celebration of Fairbanks' mining history.

Jail murderer doesn't contest charge
ANCHORAGE - A jail prisoner who choked another inmate to death nearly three years ago has pleaded no contest to second-degree murder. Terry Ray Stromme, 24, was originally charged with first-degree murder in the death of Elijah Sage. Stromme pleaded to the reduced charge Monday after reaching an agreement with prosecutors that includes a 20-year prison sentence and 10 years of probation upon release.

CONTACT US

  • Switchboard: 907-586-3740
  • Circulation and Delivery: 907-586-3740
  • Newsroom Fax: 907-586-3028
  • Business Fax: 907-586-9097
  • Accounts Receivable: 907-523-2230
  • View the Staff Directory
  • or Send feedback

ADVERTISING

SUBSCRIBER SERVICES

SOCIAL NETWORKING