Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Juneau likely was pioneer in lake taps
The Sunday article on the Bart Lake part of the Lake Dorothy hydroelectric project implied that lake tap technology was pioneered in Norway.

Election of Obama was only symbolic
In response to Eran Hood's letter to the editor on Sept. 11, she is absolutely right. Had any other president decided to address the same issue on national television, I can guarantee no child would have been pulled from school.

Juneau couple takes over restaurant
A bartender and a cook who met at a local restaurant and became engaged have leased it and are making a go of the business together.

District estimates drug-testing cost
The Juneau School District estimates the basic cost of a new high school drug testing program and two additional part-time counselors to be $170,000 a year, Superintendent Glenn Gelbrich told the School Board.

Carlson stresses equity, access and community in schools
Two very different personal experiences with the Alaska public school system have affected Phyllis Carlson's approach to education. As a student, she attended a one-room elementary school in the village of Chignik, a fishing community of less than 100 yearround residents on the Alaska Peninsula. As a parent, she sent her two daughters through Juneau's public schools, a system that accommodates about 4,900 students.

School Board president runs to improve graduation rates
After 10-year-old Skylar Lee Kim was killed in a traffic accident in 2003, Mark Choate was asked to put a dollar value on the Glacier Value Elementary School fifth grader's life.

Capitol to get new heating system before session
Alaska's Capitol will get new boilers, ensuring steady heat for the Legislature and Gov. Sean Parnell's Juneau office this winter.

School district reports two more cases of swine flu
JUNEAU - The Juneau School District reported two additional cases of swine flu among its students, bringing the total number of cases to three as of Friday.

Idaho man dies aboard cruise ship
A 76-year-old Idaho man died Sunday night aboard a cruise ship on its way from Glacier Bay to Juneau.

Photos: The open road
John Bursell, left, and Tracy Rivera ride bicycles Sunday morning on the Klondike Highway from Whitehorse to Skagway. The two had just completed the Klondike Trail of '98 International Road Relay (Bursell ran a 12.40-mile leg and Rivera ran 13.10 miles) for Juneau's Smokin' Ol Geezers team. So why are they biking the following day? "We need to get into shape," Rivera shouted as they flew by Emerald and Spirit Lakes.

Photo: Autumn cleaning
Meridith McFarland pumps water out of a kayak Sunday at Above & Beyond Alaska at Auke Bay. It was just daily maintenance, but Above & Beyond Alaska and other tourism-oriented businesses are preparing for the end of the season in the next few weeks.

Photo: Sewer project moving forward
Admiralty Construction employee Kevin Sledge, front directs Sean Lewis, operating an excavator while Kevin Millay and January Spencer look on Monday during completion of the North Douglas Sewer Expansion Project Phase II. "The system is functioning and online," Wastewater Collections Section Supervisor Tom Trego said. "People can, and have been, decommissioning their septic tanks and hooking up to the city system."

Around Town
Today, Sept. 15

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials reported:

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

Around Town
Today, Sept. 14

Clarification
An A1 story in Monday's Juneau Empire about a drug-testing program for Juneau School District incorrectly implied that School Board member Andi Story does not support stricter punishments being considered for a first offense. Story said she has not made up her mind, and brought the issue forward to encourage more discussion before the board makes a final decision on any changes to the disciplinary grid.

Merida Pearl Rodriguez
Juneau resident Merida Pearl Rodriguez died Aug. 27, 2009, in Juneau.

Charles 'Harry' Lupro
Juneau resident Charles Harrison "Harry" Lupro died Sept. 9, 2009, with family at his side. He was 82.

Carol Paddock Jorgensen
Former Juneau resident Carol Paddock Jorgensen died suddenly on Sept. 3, 2009, in Virginia. She was 63.

Billy Paul Jones
Juneau resident Billy Paul Jones died July 21, 2009, in Bothell, Wash. He was 83.

State should ban outside campaign contributions
With all the current debate over health care, there seems to be a major issue that has been put on the backburner and ignored. That is, the whole question of campaign contributions for political candidates. The First Amendment to our Constitution says, "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech, or the press."

It's not all smoke
For years, the cigarette, arguably the most dangerous legal product in America, was also one of the least regulated, subject to less government oversight than dental floss. That has finally changed - but now a group of tobacco companies has challenged in court parts of the law that gives the Food and Drug Administration authority to regulate tobacco products.

What is America's top dynasty?
American public life is saturated with them. Kennedys. Bushes. Clintons. Powerful individuals connected to one another by blood or by marriage who, deservedly or not, take on that most paradoxical of American labels: dynasty.

Heckling toward Obama a new low, but not the last
It was just two words. "You lie!" Two words. Not even curse words. But the where and the when made those two words significant.

The Top Political Dynasties
No. 1 Kennedy, 96 points

Hopeful signs in Iraqi politics
For the first time, it appears that a political party in Iraq is coming together along ideological rather than sectarian lines. If the trend continues, it could mark a sharp break in the country's political evolution, which until now has been dominated by sectarian rivalries.

School bus driver fails to report accident
JUNEAU - A school bus driver who failed to report an accident Thursday has been charged with a misdemeanor.

Board mulls request for more teachers
ANCHORAGE - One of the items on the Anchorage school board agenda is a request from the district for 30 additional teachers because more students enrolled this year than expected.

Man with concealed knives, gun arrested
JUNEAU - Juneau police arrested a 25-year-old Washington man Friday morning when they discovered knives concealed in his clothing.

HUD awards $1.5M to UAF campuses
WASHINGTON - The Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded $1.5 million to the Kuskokwim and Bristol Bay campuses of the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Woman charged with assault, leaving scene
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage police say a 26-year-old woman has been charged with assault, leaving the scene of an accident, and driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Police: Boater missing on Yukon River
TANANA - Alaska State Troopers said a boater is missing and feared drowned on the Yukon River.

Fairbanks imposes 5-cent plastic bag tax
FAIRBANKS - The Fairbanks Borough Assembly has approved a 5-cent tax on plastic bags to reduce litter.

Anchorage hit-run driver's alibi fails
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage police say a hit-and-run driver tried to claim his car had been stolen.

KUAC-TV plans equipment upgrades
FAIRBANKS - The public television station in Fairbanks will be off the air for almost two weeks for anyone without cable TV.

Anchorage man dies from bullet to throat
ANCHORAGE - Police are investigating the death of a man who was shot in the throat .

Fort Rich soldier dies a week after attack
FORT RICHARDSON - Army officials say a Fort Richardson-based soldier from Illinois died a week after being attacked in Afghanistan.

Alaskans protest Obama policies
ANCHORAGE - About 150 anti-Obama protesters gathered on the Anchorage park strip to express anger at the direction the nation is taking.

Library of Congress spotlights Alaska
WASHINGTON - From an 1802 Alaska map made by the Russian Navy to a full-color poster for an 1897 Broadway show on the Klondike Gold Rush, Alaska's history comes alive at the Library of Congress.

Fire guts Willow lodge
WILLOW - Fire destroyed the Pioneer Lodge in Willow.

Enstar projects natural gas rate drop
ANCHORAGE - Southcentral Alaska's largest natural gas utility said it will lower rates in January.

Corruption law challenged as vague
CHICAGO - Among the corruption charges faced by former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich is a statute of just 28 words with enough pop to send big names to prison for corruption, but it's under attack by those who consider it vague and unfair.

State: Wolf, bear hunts increasing moose, caribou
ANCHORAGE - An Alaska wildlife management program in which wolves are shot from low-flying airplanes and black bears are baited and snared is helping to increase the numbers of moose and caribou, state wildlife officials say.

Rural Action Subcabinet plans public hearings
ANCHORAGE - Two questions have arisen in the year since then-Gov. Sarah Palin formed the Rural Action Subcabinet: What has it accomplished and what will it accomplish?

Orphaned cubs may go to zoo
SITKA - The three orphan bear cubs at the Fortress of the Bear may eventually wind up at a zoo in another state.

Fairbanks sales tax opponents organize
FAIRBANKS - A proposal to add a city sales tax to offset a reduction in property taxes has been met with resistance from some Fairbanks business owners and residents.

Apple experiment shows promise in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS - Researchers at the University of Alaska Fairbanks are reporting an encouraging sign for locally grown fruit - a robust apple crop.

Court backs illegal guiding conviction
ANCHORAGE - The Alaska Court of Appeals has upheld a 30-day jail term given to a Kodiak man convicted of illegally guiding a hunting party in 2006.

Exxon Mobil has started first Point Thomson gas well
ANCHORAGE - Exxon Mobil has drilled the first section of its first production well at the Point Thomson field on Alaska's North Slope.

Teachers union settles harassment lawsuit for $170,000
ANCHORAGE - Alaska's main public school teachers union will pay $170,000 to settle a federal harassment lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on behalf of four female employees.

Lawsuit seeking change in judge selections tossed
ANCHORAGE - A federal judge on Friday dismissed a lawsuit challenging how Alaska chooses its judges.

Warmer winters let geese skip trip south
ANCHORAGE - A small Pacific sea goose is finding Alaska winters more to its liking, and a federal study suggests it's due to climate change.

Photo: Moose Nugget Regatta
From left, Donny Joachim, Marti Pepper, Jackie Pepper and Deanne Pokryfki of the Alaska Midnight Sun Rowing Association compete in mixed novice fours at the Moose Nugget Regatta on Saturday at Wasilla Lake.

Photo: Preserving Alaska's history
Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, right, and Librarian of Congress James Billington look over an old map of Ketchikan, Murkowski's hometown, on Friday during a visit to the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.

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