Monday, September 30, 2002

In the Stacks
This week, as promised, is devoted to books on CD!

Elect a student
Most high school students are too busy to worry about democracy. They spend their time winning soccer games, planning dances, studying chemistry, or trying to get into college. There are a few of us, though, whose responsibility it is to represent the student voice.

'The people have spoken'
It's absolutely frightening to many of my acquaintances to finally understand that communities throughout this country share in one well-defined destiny.

Public servant
It's a great compliment to our community that we have so many qualified candidates running for public office this fall.

Rhetorical questions
Friday's headlines in the New York Times quote President Bush as saying in part, in reference to pushing for a hot-war with Saddam Hussein, "After all, this is a guy that tried to kill my dad at one time."

Paved with pork
The idea that a road to Juneau will save the Capitol is nuts. Those that want the move are not going to back off just because they can drive over 800 miles to go to work.

Pressure source
I think it is about time the city put some real pressure on local vendors to carry bear-proof garbage containers. There was a one-day chance to get a 55-gallon drum on the 28th. Or you could order one online and wait a month for it to get here. These are not viable solutions for our problem.

Local decisions
Regarding Mr. Alan Kinsolving's letter of Friday, my long-term home has been Juneau for the past 35 years. During the last 27 of those years, my husband and I have been and are friends of William S. Morris III (Billy) and his wife.

Proven leader
I have known and worked with Merrill Sanford for over 20 years and support his campaign for Assembly. Over the years, he has proven himself as a leader and I admire the respect he shows for those around him, as well as the effort he puts into understanding all aspects of an issue.

Strong voice for kids
During the first two years as an Assembly member, Marc Wheeler has put words into actions for the benefit of Juneau's children and schools. He fought hard to get increased funding for the school district during this year's Assembly budget debates. And Marc has worked constructively with the School Board in supporting the second high school in the Valley.

Pure of heart
"We've got people being intolerant of our intolerance. Where will it end?" So asks the Rev. Mr. Frega in a recent Juneau Empire story of the concern many Juneau citizens have expressed over his church's stance against gays and lesbians.

Take the high road
I am deeply saddened by the personal attack on Don Etheridge by some long-time, prominent citizens of this community.

Unresolved Native claims
Hey, Frank M., thanks for the information about the land trade in Berners Bay between Cape Fox and Sealaska and the feds. As a shareholder in Sealaska Corp., I have lost maximum participation on anything that our corporation does with our land, including logging as it sustains the corporation with enough cash to keep it above the water.

Frankie supports kids
I'm thankful that Frankie Pillifant is running for re-election to the Assembly. Her record supports kids and making our community a better place.

Merrill listens, leads
I am writing in support of Merrill Sanford, candidate for Juneau Assembly. I have known Merrill for over 10 years through the fire department. He was my fire chief for my volunteer and career positions as a firefighter and paramedic.

For Frankie, Marc and Stan
Leaders that allow diversity of opinion, open debate on all issues, and balanced, thoughtful public policy decisions help build a more viable and stronger community.

Eloquently voiced
Regarding the My Turn, "Another Christian point of view," by Mark and Mildred Boesser (Empire, Sept. 26), bravo!

Choke hold
Juneau is the only state capital city on the North American continent that cannot be reached by road.

All deserve respect
I was happy to see your article on the JDHS Day of Silence (Empire, Sept. 22). You gave a fair and impartial hearing of the story. Now let a former SE Alaska student tell you her experiences of living life in silence.

Just stick around
I read the Anchorage Daily News editorial pressing for details from the Murkowski campaign. I would contend that it would be irresponsible for either candidate to lay out a detailed plan for when they take office. First, Murkowski doesn't know who will be on his team in Juneau. Secondly, it would be bad management to dictate to the professionals working in state government as opposed to asking for their input.

The real evidence
It is unfortunate that candidates running for public office like Marc Wheeler and Frankie Pillifant don't have the courage of their convictions to tell voters exactly what they think.

Injustice to Frankie
Don Smith's editorial in Friday's Empire does a gross disservice and injustice to Frankie Pillifant's voting record and views.

Thumbs down
As a property owner and a voter, I am taking a close look at the $15 million of projects in the bond package. Are some of the projects worthwhile? Sure! Are all of them necessary? No one has convinced me of that!

Campaign issue
How to fund our state government is Alaska's prevailing political problem. The people must challenge our candidates to address this issue. Rhetoric like taxes only as a last resort and somehow protecting dividend checks just does not cut it.

Deep Southeast roots
We get the impression from reading the Juneau Empire editorial page that not much is known about Frank Murkowski's Alaska residence. We knew Frank and Nancy as neighbors in Wrangell some 40 years ago.

Committed to transportation
Friday's editorial from the Empire publisher was off base to question Frankie Pillifant's commitment to safe and efficient transportation in Juneau, when it has consistently been among her highest priorities.

Absentee numbers hold up to last year's
Almost 880 people have asked for absentee ballots for Tuesday's city election, about the same number as last year when about a quarter of Juneau's registered voters went to the polls, said Beth McEwen, deputy city clerk.

Suicide threat closes local road
Police shut down the North Douglas road to Eaglecrest for nearly three hours Sunday while they talked to a man threatening to kill himself.

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

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

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

A little of Juneau found in 'Sweet Home Alabama'
Alaska's capital city may not be an obvious feature in the romantic comedy "Sweet Home Alabama," which opens this weekend in theaters across the country, including Juneau. But Doug Eboch, who wrote the movie, said growing up in Juneau proved to be a major influence. Eboch, 34, lived in Juneau in the 1980s and graduated from Juneau-Douglas High School in 1986. He then moved to Los Angeles to study film production and screenwriting at the University of Southern California.

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

Writing comedy in Hollywood
Doug Eboch hates it when writers cheat, especially in romantic comedies.Eboch, a 1986 Juneau-Douglas High School graduate, wrote "Sweet Home Alabama" as his master's thesis in screenwriting at the University of Southern California and then sold the screenplay to a pair of Hollywood film producers.

Tribal group seeks payback for land
John Morris remembers watching the city of Douglas burn down his home in the Douglas Indian Village in 1962. The fire trucks were there to keep the fire in, not put it out.

Etheridge denounces 'whisper campaign'
Accusations that Juneau Assembly incumbent Don Etheridge abused political power for personal gain brought counter charges from the candidate Friday that he's been marked by a "whisper campaign." Greg O'Claray, director for legislative and governmental affairs for the Marine Engineers Beneficial Association, sent a memo to the union's membership last week that said Etheridge is keeping the tugboat Tagish in the city's harbor against policy and that he tried to pressure Capital City Fire and Rescue to hire two of his relatives.

Conference: Tourism lets Alaska Natives tell their story
Tourism offers American Indian and Alaska Native tribes the opportunity to tell their own stories, says Tex Hall, president of the National Congress of American Indians.

Photo: Glacier fog
Fog creeps toward the Mendenhall Glacier late last week.

Man prepares for self-sufficiency in retirement
A Hoonah man is building a floating greenhouse to feed himself in his retirement and in case violent world events cut off Alaska from its food supply."There are going to be some really strange times these 10 to 20 years," said Greg Garrison. "Our government is putting us in a world of hurt."

Hitching a ride
Photo Isaac Musser, 14, and his electric-powered wheelchair provide a lift for friends Shanye Howard, 13, left, Travis Evans, 13, center, and Mike Wood, 13, on his skateboard as they make their way Saturday afternoon to the skateboard park in the Mendenhall Valley. michael penn / the juneau empire

My Turn: Murkowski's third option
Some people missed stories revealing how Sen. Frank Murkowski proposes solving Alaska's fiscal and economic problems. Missing the news, or ignoring it, are proponents of invoking new taxes or using Alaska Permanent Fund earnings. Murkowski prefers a third option, using Alaska's bountiful resources. It might take a little of all three but Murkowski's option alone benefits Alaskans, reducing the need for the other two.

My Turn: Yes to an EIS, a JDHS, and an October bond
The motion passed by the Assembly on Sept. 9 directed staff to work with the state to complete the environmental impact study for the designated preferred alternative (East side) for Juneau access. The issue is not a new one and has been debated since the mid-'90s.

Toe Cartoon

Empire editorial: Re-elect Don Etheridge to District 2 Assembly seat
Juneau is fortunate to have six well-qualified people willing and able to represent its citizens in the Assembly. Competing for the District 2 seat is one-term incumbent, Don Etheridge, a 43-year resident of Juneau and business agent and lobbyist for the Alaska State District Council of Laborers.

Our language has nuked itself into common use
Finding the right words to convey a clear message may have been a struggle before, but now you are free to make up what you can't find in our genetically enhanced, grain-fed living language. Everyone using English these days is quite free to try new phrasing, contrast words in clever ways or go boldly with sentence organization. How do we get away with this? There is no one to stop us, apparently, but also, there is a wonderful thing called metathesis.

My Turn: Random drug tests undermine trust
To those school board candidates who favor random drug testing for students who participate in extracurricular activities - have you really thought about this or were you merely parroting some sound bite spun off by the "war on drugs?"

My Turn: Sexual orientation is not a choice
Most Americans are committed to democracy and religious freedom and do not want to discriminate unfairly. They realize the injustice of prejudice against persons who have innate characteristics of gender or race. However, these very persons mistakenly consider sexual orientation as a lifestyle choice. They are victims of misinformation.

My Turn: Preferred option is the best option
Recently, the completion of the Juneau Access Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) has become the focus of renewed public attention and rightfully so. The environmental impact statement process can be confusing, and in regards to this project, perhaps even more so due to delays and controversy. For those reasons, some clarification of the process may help the public discussion.

My Turn: Another view on the JDHS Day of Silence
I am saddened deeply by Pastor Tim Frega of Auke Bay Bible Church's statement, which said: "...We love the lesbian and the gay individuals ... but there is plenty of places in the word of God that say (homosexuality) is wrong."

All-weather athletes
In autumn, when rain, wind and darkness can sock in Juneau for weeks at a time, many of us store our bikes and hiking gear and head to the gym - or the couch.Not Rob Welton. He pulls on water-resistant tights and overshoes, mounts heavier tires on his bike and revels in the mess. "I'm kind of a biking nut," Welton said. "I don't care if it's raining or windy, it doesn't matter."

Fish Pictures

Out and About
In season: Black bear (Sept. 1-June 30), brown bear (Sept. 15-Dec. 31, March 15-May 31), deer (Sept. 15-Dec. 31), mountain goat (Sept. 1 or Oct. 1, depending on area,-Nov. 31), moose (Sept. 15-Oct. 15), wolf (Aug. 1-April 30), wolverine (Nov. 10-Feb. 15), ducks, geese, brants, snipe, crane (Sept. 1-Dec. 15), red and blue king crab (Oct. 1-March 31), coho salmon (June-Nov.). (Seasons and limits are more complex than can be detailed here. Always check regulations before heading out.)

Deal with the meat now for good eating later
FAIRBANKS - The sooner you cut up a moose, deer, caribou, sheep or other game animal, the better it will taste later on."It's how the meat is taken care of more than anything else," said Virgil Umphenour, hunting guide and owner of Interior Alaska Fish Processors, which also processes game meat in the fall.

Fish Report
Coho salmon fishing slowed in the Juneau area during the most recent creel survey. It took an average of eight hours to land a silver. Last year it took anglers an average of three hours to land a coho. The five-year average catch rate is five hours. Most of the coho were being harvested from Point Retreat, Outer Point and North Pass.

Canine companions require supervision on the trail
Trail Mix's 10th anniversary is a good time to reflect on the tremendous amount of work and dedication that has been put into the development of trails in and around Juneau.Our trail system allows individuals of all abilities to access the beauty that surrounds us. It seems, however, that many people think of the trails as their own personal space where they are exempt from the courtesies of community.

Swimmers dominate in Valdez
The weekend got off to a rough start for the Juneau-Douglas High School swim team, as their flight to the Valdez Invitational was delayed due to mechanical problems.But the Crimson Bears bounced back in a big way to sweep the team titles at the Friday-Saturday meet, which featured some of Alaska's top high school swimming programs.

Juneau ends year with a win
The Adair-Kennedy Memorial Park bleachers were nearly empty after Friday night's high school football game, but Juneau-Douglas senior Austen Clair had to make one final run across the field.With the lights shining above, Clair stood on the 50-yard line and surveyed the field, thinking about all the moments he'd spent in practice and games. Clair's red and black face paint was smudged as he savored Juneau's season-ending 21-14 victory over the Colony Knights, ending a season of struggle. The victory halted Juneau's six-game losing streak and came against a Colony team that is bound for the state playoffs.

Bear girls attack with pack
The Juneau-Douglas High School girls cross-country running squad finished in a remarkably tight pack to claim fourth place at Saturday's Class 4A state meet at Palmer High School's Michael Janecek Trails.The Crimson Bear boys placed seventh, led by sophomore Tristan Knutson-Lombardo's ninth-place individual finish.

Crimson Bears 21, Knights 14
Friday's game from Adair-Kennedy Memorial Park

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

Alaska High School Cross Country Champions
These are the past Alaska state cross-country running individual and team champions. The state meet was a single classification until the 1985 season, when it was split into two divisions for small schools (Class 1A-2A-3A) and large schools (Class 4A).

Crimson Bears sweep in Ketchikan
The Juneau-Douglas High School volleyball team hoped to avoid a letdown this weekend when it played the Ketchikan King Salmon in a pair of Region V-Class 4A matches Friday and Saturday in Ketchikan.The Crimson Bears were coming off one of their best weekends ever - a weekend where they beat four state contenders in Anchorage and Wasilla - and the Juneau players wanted to maintain that same level of intensity in Ketchikan. Juneau easily swept Ketchikan in early September, but letdowns have been known to happen.

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.

Pro-move group: FRANK fooled backers
The pro-legislative-move group Alaskans for Efficient Government says the organization working to ensure that Alaskans know the cost of moving the Legislature has pulled a "bait and switch" on campaign contributors by referring to the ballot measure as a "capital move." Alaskans for Efficient Government on Friday filed a complaint with the Alaska Public Offices Commission, which oversees campaign contributions, stating that the FRANK Committee has solicited campaign contributions in the Anchorage Daily News and Juneau Empire through ads calling on voters to keep their right to know the cost of a "capital move."

Fighting for flagstops
From the railroad track, John Strasenburgh's cabin is an hour's walk through the Alaska wilderness. Without the train, it would take him seven hours or more to hike in from the nearest road. "The train is absolutely essential to me," said the 56-year-old retired bank auditor. Strasenburgh and his neighbors depend on the train service that stops for people who wave it down along a remote 55-mile stretch of rail.

FAA wants passengers to play bigger role in air safety
ANCHORAGE - That old image of the Bush pilot - Alaska's cowboy of the air - may be getting reined in a bit as safety officials try to cut the death toll in airplane crashes.The Federal Aviation Administration says one reason for Alaska's spotty safety record is the attitude that risk is just part of flying here.

Man arrested after returning to stolen car
Police staking out a car that had been reported stolen arrested a Fairbanks man on an outstanding drug warrant Saturday, then added some new charges.

Petersburg: Residents to vote on six propositions
Voters in Petersburg's Oct. 1 municipal election will have the opportunity to cast a yes or no vote on six propositions approved by the City Council. Four propositions address city tax issues, including a much-debated ordinance that would require travel and adventure services to collect and report the 6 percent city sales tax.

Salcha homesteader, inventor dies
A Salcha homesteader known for his businesses and inventions died last week.

Owners attempt to sell cabins via essay contest
Brian Johnson is selling his cabin rental and youth hostel business in Haines for the asking price of $200 and 400 well chosen words.And the words don't even have to be spelled correctly. After twice trying to sell their business in Haines by more traditional means, Johnson and his wife, Laura, are trying something completely different. They are holding an essay contest, with the winner taking possession of the rustic property on 2.5 acres.

Ozone holds hope for treating tanker water
Trials of ozone treatments used to kill invasive bacteria and tiny animals in oil tanker ballast water are giving scientists hope that the creatures can be kept from taking hold in Alaska.

BLM: No serious leaks at petroleum reserve wells
The Bureau of Land Management did not find anything alarming over the summer after it finished its first look at 37 years worth of abandoned wells and drill sites in the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska.

Moose-cutting rookies learn the finer points of big-game butchery
When Chelsie Venechuk took a break from her job in Nikolai, her co-workers gave her an assignment for her stint in Fairbanks.

Sitka: Haida rejects Sitka Tribe of Alaska appeal
The Haida Corp. has rejected an appeal from the Sitka Tribe of Alaska to choose other lands than those in Sitka Sound. The corporation says the appeal has came too late.

Liquor sellers, buyers stock up before tax hike
Alaska's liquor merchants and drinkers are buying booze in unprecedented volumes to sidestep - at least for a while - a spike in alcohol taxes coming on Tuesday.

Ketchikan: Man shoots marauding bear
A black bear that raided a family's outdoor freezer was shot early Monday morning.

New law: carrying insurance ID a must
Alaska State Troopers will start citing motorists Tuesday if they can't prove they have insurance as required by a law that went into effect July 1. Other law enforcement agencies are following their lead.

Indictment: Man planned to fake death
ANCHORAGE - A federal indictment says a man charged with insurance fraud in the death of his wife originally intended to fake his own death as part of an insurance scam.The indictment, returned Sept. 18 in Anchorage, charges Jay Darling with four counts of wire fraud and one count of mail fraud for scheming to illegally obtain insurance proceeds.

Couple charged with stealing UA servers
Two former University of Alaska Fairbanks student employees have been charged with stealing two computer servers and selling them on eBay.

State Briefs
Eielson commander heads to Qatar to lead guard; Worker, children hurt after chlorine leak at pool; Student sexually assaulted at UA Anchorage; Students suspended after videotaped brawls

Correction
Due to an Associated Press error, a news brief in Friday's Empire gave the incorrect final day for registering to vote in the Nov. 5 statewide general election. Sunday, Oct. 6., is the final day for registration. Juneau's elections office, in the Court Plaza Building at 3rd and Main Streets downtown, will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday to register voters. Registration also can be done during regular business hours at the city clerks' office, the Department of Motor Vehicles and public libraries. Registration forms also are available on the Internet.

Two charged for robbery with hammer
Two men have been charged with armed robbery after one of them went into a Wasilla convenience store and threatened the cashier with a hammer, according to Alaska State Troopers.

Candidate gets equal time on TV
Candidate Joseph Easaw has been reading promos for TV news shows. It's not what he expected when he decided to run for the Fairbanks North Star Borough School Board, but it's one more way to get his face in front of voters.

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