Sunday, October 12, 2003

In the stacks: DVDs to cozy up to on fall nights
The windy, rainy nights of autumn are almost upon us. Cozy up with a new DVD or video from the library.

Tobacco tax hike unfair
Well, it looks like Juneau has once again decided to make the price of something else higher in this town than it is in most other places. I am appalled at the willful robbery of the people's money for different goods and services in this town, but Iam even more upset by the passing of the tobacco tax Tuesday.

Glad drill coaches are back
Agree with Kadashan

Putting spin on survey
The Thursday Juneau Empire headline stated "Survey says Juneau split on road debate: Haines and Skagway overwhelmingly back enhanced ferry service in Lynn Canal." Digging through the body of the article, 52 percent of Juneauites want a road to the north, while 36 percent want improved ferry service. That's the margin of our "split" in opinion.

Agree with Kadashan
I agreed with so much of what Kadashan had to say that I forwarded that letter (via e-mail) all over the world. John Collin is the one who missed the mark.

More Southeast coverage
One of the big selling points for KTOO now days is local reporters giving us Southeast and Juneau news. With the loss of KING 5 news out of Seattle to KATH, we now have all of our local TV news beamed down from Anchorage telling us the goings on in the Southcentral Alaska area.

Presidents in perspective
Those who would criticize President Bush might first reflect upon our previous president Bill Clinton. Clinton was almost impeached for lying about his sexual affair with Monica Lewinsky. President Bush's starting a war with Iraq in order to destroy weapons of mass destruction which have yet to be found, thereby killing thousands of Iraqis and many American and British soldiers while spending billions of our tax dollars to do so, is a mere trifle compared to Clinton's treasonous attempt to conceal his sex life from us.

Facts off on salmon story
I am writing to advise you of some errors contained in the article entitled "Fisherman catches salmon that likely escaped from B.C. fish farm," dated Oct. 7. I would like to take this opportunity to correct those errors.

Don't make us a joke
People are actually trying to make this state a joke, arent they? A recall for Governor Murkowski. Well, it is confimed again that this state is full of bickering little children. Come on people. If someone is elected you can criticize them and say what you want, but if you try and recall all you're doing is making it harder for people to do their intended work.

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

Schorr ahead by one vote
Longtime Juneau School Board member Alan Schorr leads William Peters by one vote for the final open seat on the board, according to results from Friday afternoon's tally of absentee and questioned ballots. However, the city will accept ballots postmarked by Oct. 7 until 1 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 14, when the canvassing board meets to certify the election, City Clerk Laurie Sica said. The city mailed out 305 ballots and had received 218 by Friday, she said.

Court orders deadline for initiative decision
Anchorage Superior Court Judge Mark Rindner ruled Friday that Lt. Gov. Loren Leman has until Oct. 25 to certify or reject a ballot initiative that would change the way vacancies in the U.S. Senate are filled. The initiative sponsors - Democratic state Reps. Harry Crawford and Eric Croft of Anchorage and David Guttenberg of Fairbanks - took the matter to court after waiting more than a month for Attorney General Gregg Renkes and Lt. Gov. Loren Leman, a Republican, to respond.

Connecting with Carnegie Hall
Schoolchildren in Juneau and New York City guided Ron the trumpet player and Skippy the squirrel from the Alaska capital to the Big Apple, past sleeping rattlesnakes and rope-skipping girls, in a novel interactive music game Friday. The event - which used sophisticated phone lines in a videoconference between a new concert hall at Carnegie Hall and a studio at KTOO downtown - inaugurated a connection this school year with Carnegie Hall's educational staff.

Correction
Due to a reporter's error, a story in Friday's Empire misstated the number of comments received by the U.S. Forest Service on a proposal to exempt the Tongass National Forest from the roadless rule. The Forest Service has received 125,000 comments.

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

Empire publisher moves on
Juneau Empire publisher Donald S. Smith will leave the newspaper for a job as publisher of The Grand Island Independent in Nebraska, Morris Communications Co. announced Friday. Morris owns the Empire and 25 other daily newspapers as well as 10 nondailies and 23 free community papers. Smith has served as publisher of the Empire since January 2001. His departure is effective Nov. 10, the company said.

Photo: The Mosquito Fleet
This early 1930s photograph shows the so-called "Mosquito Fleet," Juneau's fishing armada, rafted together at a local dock.

Beverly M. Dorsher
Beverly Mae Dorsher, 71, died Sept. 28, 2003, at her home in Douglas. She was born May 28, 1932, in Minneapolis, Minn., to George A. and Isabelle N. Peck. She was a graduate of South High in Minneapolis, Class of 1950. She arrived in Douglas in 1978 and married Gerald J. Dorsher, also a 1950 graduate of South High, in 1980.

My Turn: Thanking Terry Gardner for helping shape the PFD
As you peer into your bank account to see if your $1,107.56 dividend has arrived, say thanks to former Ketchikan legislator Terry Gardner. Hugh Malone was clearly the founder of Alaska's Permanent Fund and Governor Hammond appropriately earned the nickname "Father of the Dividend." But had former Ketchikan Rep. Terry Gardner not done what he did when he did it, it is unlikely that Alaska's dividend program would exist.

Empire Editorial: California dreamin'
Recall fever seems to be spreading in the wake of California's historic recall of Gov. Gray Davis. Now it appears that it is the ambition of a dozen people here in Alaska to mimic what happened in California by suggesting the recall of Alaska's governor. To most people across the land, California's recall was a gut-wrenchingly painful process to witness.

Web links
Web sites of interest to local outdoors enthusiasts.

Record outings
Records are made to be broken. Sure, anyone following sports has heard the phrase uttered when some sports star has eclipsed another star's stats. New records are interesting, but they always seem so distant. So unrelated. What are the chances of any of us breaking the home run record, rushing for the most yards or even getting in Guinness? But wait. Even if most of us don't set records, being part of one can be a perky picker-upper that makes an otherwise routine day memorable. At least that's the way I felt upon learning that Juneau recently set two distinctly different weather records just two days apart.

Bowhead whale population rebounds
Bowhead whales, once hunted to the brink of extinction by commercial whalers, are on the rebound in Alaska. The population in Alaska waters - representing about 90 percent of the world's population of bowhead whales - is now estimated to be at about 10,000 animals and growing. The Alaska population, known as the Bering-Chukchi-Beaufort Sea stock, is one of the world's five stocks of bowhead whales. The other stocks swim the frigid waters of Canada and Greenland, Hudson Bay and the Sea of Okhotsk north of Japan.

Outdoors Digest
Brief outdoor news items from around the state.

Out & About
Outdoor recreational events happening in Juneau.

Money for Kenai trail sent south
The dream of the Alaska Mountain and Wilderness Huts Association for 30 miles of new backcountry trail connecting four shelters on the Kenai Peninsula appears to have gone up in the smoke of Western forest fires this summer. Alaska officials with the U.S. Forest Service say the entire $500,000 that U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens, an Alaska Republican, earmarked for construction of new trail and the huts in the Paradise Valley area of the Chugach National Forest near Seward went south to help pay for firefighting.

Fight Night Friday gets rolling
Sixteen boxers - including several first-time pugilists - took to the ring at Centennial Hall on Friday for the first-ever Fight Night Friday event. Tim "Rocky" Garcia of Juneau and San Jose, Calif., scored a knockout in the first match of the evening. He defeated Frank Shorty of Juneau in a middleweight (146-174 pounds) bout. In the evening's other middleweight matchup, Wayne "Fu" Smallwood of Juneau beat Shawn Beaird of Juneau and Sitka by unanimous decision.

East ready for rematch with Juneau
Any coach hates to lose, but a loss may have been the best thing for East Anchorage High School when the Thunderbirds came to Juneau and fell 42-18 to the Juneau-Douglas Crimson Bears in the second week of the season. All season long, the Crimson Bear players felt as if they hadn't played the real East team, and they've said they think Thunderbirds looked past them in that game.

Where no Bears have gone before
The Juneau-Douglas High School football team will be exploring uncharted territory next weekend when the Crimson Bears play in their first state championship game in team history. The Crimson Bears knocked off the Lathrop Malemutes 33-18 in Friday night's state championship semifinals, and they will play the East Anchorage Thunderbirds for the state title at 1 p.m. Saturday at Anchorage Football Stadium.

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.

Stevens: Energy bill may have to wait until next yeat
Just a few months ago, Sen. Ted Stevens predicted that a House-Senate committee would produce a national energy bill this fall. But his thinking has changed. "It's entirely possible this bill won't go to the floor until next year," he said.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

A bulldozer runs through it
Psalms sat on Papa Pilgrim's right knee and Lamb perched on his left. Thirteen more of his children - all with names from the Bible, several packing pistols - crowded around. So did his exhausted-looking wife, Country Rose. It was a late summer's evening in Hillbilly Heaven, a 410-acre ranch in eastern Alaska. Outside, the temperature dipped below freezing and the encircling mountains had a fresh dusting of snow. Inside the family cabin, potato soup was steaming on the stove and apple pies bubbled in a wood-burning oven. Supper, though, was on hold.

Alaska Geographic magazine ends 30-year run
After three decades of publication, Alaska Geographic is calling it quits. A dwindling subscriber base has forced the Anchorage nonprofit outfit that publishes the quarterly publication to halt production. The glossy publications have been available on a subscription basis for society members. Individual issues are sold in bookstores and specialty shops as well.

Nome voters elect first Alaska Native woman mayor
Denise Michels, who was elected mayor of Nome by voters last week, is the first Alaska Native woman to hold the post in the town's 100-year history. A 37-year-old Inupiaq, Michels hopes to establish better communication between Native organizations and the largely non-Native city council.

Longtime Alaskan is ferry's new owner
The Bartlett was transferred Friday to its new owner, a longtime Alaskan and Seattle businessman who bought the 34-year-old state ferry in the last 10 minutes of bidding on eBay. The buyer, who went by the username of Salmon Man 1953 during the online auction that ended Aug. 10, is Lloyd Cannon, the 73-year-old CEO and president of All Alaskan Seafoods, a company he founded in 1975.

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