Wednesday, October 23, 2002

Supporting resource development
Alaskans have been blessed by the strength of our federal delegation. For years, our leaders in Washington have battled to preserve our rights and our ability to support ourselves through resource development.

Upright and honest
In 1984 I was in my second term in the Legislature representing the rural communities of Southeast when Fran Ulmer was elected to the House. I watched her very closely from her first day in office. She sat next to me.

Alaska needs Murkowski
Have you decided how you will vote for governor? If so, are you firm in that decision? If you're not sure, then please give what I have to say some thought.

Honorable, effective
Bruce Weyhrauch, candidate for House District 4, will make an exceptional legislator. I have worked with Bruce for many years on fishing issues and other important issues.

Constitutional convention is dangerous and unnecessary
The League of Women Voters of Alaska urges Alaskans to vote "No" on Ballot Measure No. 1: "Shall there be a Constitutional Convention?"

Vote: Protect women's reproductive rights
Fundamentally, freedom means having a choice. If protecting a woman's right to choose among reproductive options is important to you, please vote for Fran Ulmer.

Out of touch
Sen. Murkowski's comments about the urban-rural divide are both outrageous and out of touch! His views that "the Knowles-Ulmer administration has created a track record of broken promises, finger-pointing and perpetuating urban-rural conflicts for political gain" is absolutely incredulous!

Assessing the debate
During the gubernatorial debate held last night in Fairbanks between candidates Fran Ulmer and Frank Murkowski, one of the attending reporters asked Fran why any liberals would vote for her, given her stand on issues like missile defense and ANWR. She proceeded to state her appeal to folks regardless of whether they consider themselves liberal or conservative. Nice answer, and true enough, but here it is straight: Why wouldn't they, given the alternative?

Can vs. can't
Improving Alaska's transportation infrastructure is critically important to our economic future. Most candidates agree. A rail connection with North America is one project that has captured the imagination of many Alaskans. In the Legislature, Rep. Jeannette James took the lead by passing legislation to set aside corridors.

A famous analogy
I read Gregg Erickson's letter defending Sen. Elton and attacking Republicans with utter amazement at his disregard for the truth. In his defense of Sen. Elton, he said that Sen. Adams had been denied a seat on the Senate Finance Committee two years earlier.

Valuable representative
I am proud to call Cathy Muñoz my friend and professional peer. Long before she decided to campaign for the Senate, and long before I decided to campaign to become the mayor of the Fairbanks North Star Borough, we were discussing statewide issues, opportunities and solutions.

Alaska needs Murkowski
Have you decided how you will vote for governor? If so, are you firm in that decision? If you're not sure, then please give what I have to say some thought.

Progressive attitude
I have no use for anyone in the Alaska Legislature who represents Juneau and votes no on road access in and out of Juneau, and votes no on opening ANWR for drilling. We need Cathy Muñoz in the Alaska State Senate now.

Fran impresses
I first heard Fran Ulmer speak at an Alaska Visitor Association convention held in Skagway in the early '90s. At that time she was in the House of Representatives. She not only spoke at the event, but also sang. I remember being very impressed with both her singing and her speech.

Empire bias
Re: "Cathy helped bilingual education" (Empire, Oct. 22), I wonder why the writer of this letter, Allan D. Engstrom, didn't bother to identify himself as being Cathy Muñoz's brother?

Time to ante up
It is now the end of the season. Although it was not one of the best seasons, for those that persevered through the end, there were some nice cohos to be caught. Furthermore, there was a record number of king salmon to be caught. Now I would urge you all to dig into your pockets and pay your Alaska Trollers Association (ATA) membership dues.

Consider the source
It seems Al Johnson has worn out his welcome in our sister city, Ketchikan. Now Mr. Johnson wants to peddle to a Juneau audience his personal, and need I say distorted, interpretation of statistics about student reading scores and what they represent. (Empire, Oct. 18,).

Images and action
On April 12, 1990, Frank Murkowski joined four other U.S. senators in Iraq for a meeting with Saddam Hussein. Their purpose was to help Saddam find ways of improving his image in America. This image was understandably poor. Two years earlier Saddam had launched a well publicized campaign of genocide against the Kurdish minority living in his country, resulting in the deaths of some 100,000 unarmed Kurdish men, women and children.

Every vote counts
I've been wearing a "Fran Ulmer for Governor" button since early spring, and I've heard many different and interesting responses. One thing I hear often is, "Oh, it would be great if she won, but it will never happen. Frank Murkowski has too much support."

Present in Alaska
I was driving to a meeting the other day and heard Fran Ulmer on a live radio call-in show. Folks were calling in with tough and challenging questions. As I continued to listen to the way in which Fran Ulmer addressed the issues I was struck by her intelligence and communication skills.

Count on Cathy
Please vote for Cathy Muñoz for the state Senate in the general election on Nov. 5. I worked with Cathy in the state Legislature and I know that she knows her way around the capital.

Demonstrated success
I am a recent graduate of UAS-Juneau. I advocated with my fellow students to get full funding for the University of Alaska. I want to thank Sen. Kim Elton for his role in securing money for the University. That funding has resulted in meeting the needs of Juneau students with more academic programs, a mental health counselor (we had none until this year), new classrooms via the library addition (we attend most classes in renovated trailers), and a recreation center.

Securing our future
Rep. Bill Hudson has served Juneau and Alaska with distinction and while it will be hard to replace all of his knowledge and experience, there is a candidate running for office who can fill his shoes - Tim Grussendorf. Mr. Grussendorf's service with the state and local governments brings a valuable knowledge, so he knows where those shoes should be walking and what steps they need to take to get there.

Fran understands fisheries
We've all been exposed to Fran and Frank's positions on major issues. Here are a few comments on less discussed items.Fran has been active and accessible to fishery leaders in this state. Last January, she was a keynote speaker at the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill Trustee Council annual meeting where she declared her interest and appreciation for marine science and desire to bridge the gaps between science, resource dependent people and government.

Cathy helped bilingual education
Cathy Muñoz understands the importance of bilingual education. As a fluent Spanish speaker and co-founder of the Juneau Charter School, Cathy pushed hard for the creation of a Spanish language curriculum. The Juneau Charter School is one of the only primary schools in Southeast that offers foreign language instruction. Cathy brought the idea to fruition.

The best choice
Fran Ulmer is our best choice for governor. She will ensure our schools have resources to provide the education our children deserve.

'Take a hike'
The contractor's claim of "unexpected soil conditions" encountered while dredging the Douglas boat harbor is ludicrous! Anyone at all experienced in soil excavation that has observed the boat harbor at low tide would recognize that the area to be excavated would be tough or hard material.

Correct and courageous
For a candidate who is pledging in her campaign to bring us all together, Cathy Muñoz certainly seems to have attracted vitriolic supporters. Monday's "Character, integrity" letter attacks Sen. Kim Elton for "having voted against the flag desecration resolution."

A strong voice
Bruce Weyhrauch will be a most credible representative for the Juneau in the State House. Bill Hudson is a hard act to follow. For years, Bill represented Juneau's interests, including those of state employees, with dedication, vigor and statesmanship.

Friends of fishing?
I have noticed with interest a campaign issue that has come up for discussion - particularly in letters to the editor and some political ads - concerning close associates of Fran Ulmer.

Supporting resource development
Alaskans have been blessed by the strength of our federal delegation. For years, our leaders in Washington have battled to preserve our rights and our ability to support ourselves through resource development.

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

Juneau Assembly funds campaigns against session move and for school bonds
The Juneau Assembly spent $375,000 Monday to encourage people to keep legislative sessions in Juneau and to vote for a statewide school bond measure.Both issues are on the Nov. 5 ballot. Most of the money appropriated Monday - $350,000 - will go to the Juneau-based Alaska Committee's efforts to campaign against Ballot Measure 2. The measure would move legislative sessions to the Matanuska-Susitna Borough or Anchorage. The city has contributed more than $1 million to the effort in the past year.

Students hear from candidates at JDHS forum
Juneau-Douglas High School students got a first-hand civics lesson Monday morning at a question-and-answer forum with local legislative candidates.Scattered throughout the high school library, separate venues for each race - House District 3, House District 4 and Senate District B, plus the governor's race - provided an intimate setting for students to get to know the candidates and their positions.

Photo: Swearing in
Juneau City Attorney John Corso, left, shakes hands with Stan Ridgeway, Merrill Sanford and Mark Wheeler after swearing them in as Juneau Assembly members Monday evening. michael penn / the juneau empire

Correction
The caption for a photograph on the front page of Monday's Empire of participants in a youth program misstated the sponsors and omitted a participating organization.

Absentee voters get head start on election
With 13 days left before the general election, Alaskans who are unable to be in their voting precinct on Election Day already are casting their ballots.The Alaska Committee, which is fighting a ballot initiative to move the Legislature to Anchorage or the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, is urging Juneau residents to vote early via absentee ballot to ensure they make it to the polls to defeat Ballot Measure 2.

Auke Bay parents worry about pedestrian safety
When school lets out each day at Auke Bay Elementary, a few children stand at the edge of busy Glacier Highway waiting to cross. Occasionally, a child will dart out just before a vehicle speeds by."I bet they (Auke Bay children) have close calls. I cringe to think about it," said Nancy Lehnhart, a parent of two Auke Bay students.

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

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

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

Thank you
...for the hard work.

Pets of the week
Reggie is a 1-year-old cream-orange neutered male who is quiet, shy and rather independent. Shenia is a grey-brown spayed female Tabby who has a very sweet and gentle personality. She is friendly and affectionate and a great lap-sitter.

Learning to be heard
Brooke Leslie, 17, has trouble finding teenagers in her home town of Wrangell who are interested in their Native culture and heritage.Brandon Johnson, 18, and Lydia Henry, 15, of Yakutat, believe many youths in their village would like to know more about Native culture, but the two said adult leaders in Yakutat are unreceptive to the students' ideas.

Lecture focuses on marine life
"Marine invertebrates in medicine" is the topic of Friday's Evening at Egan free lecture at 7 p.m. in Egan Library on the University of Alaska Southeast campus.

Pilots should be prepared to fly in the harsh winter weather
October is a month of change. The tourists are gone and the shops that cater to them closed. The kids have been back in school and are deep into their winter routine. Our weather is getting colder and we are getting out the winter clothing. Oil in the car needs to be changed, and speaking of oil what about winterizing the airplane.

In the harsh autumn, nothing beats butternut squash
I can think of no vegetable better than butternut squash to satisfy appetites piqued by the cold winds of fall. The satisfying starchiness of this squash is harmoniously balanced by its velvety texture and its earthy flavor, with notes of almonds, sage and pumpkin. Even the warm orange color of the butternut is appropriately autumnal.

Schmidt, Polasky wed
Kelley Schmidt of Lindstrom, Minn. and Nick Polasky of Juneau were married in a ceremony at St. Bridget's Catholic Church in Lindstrom, Minn., on Sept. 7, 2002.

New tougher and greener grasses for a wider world
Grass, in the form of a closely trimmed sheet of green, is our most widely used form of landscaping. It is treasured and coddled like a national obsession, the amount spent on lawn care is tremendous. Fertilizers are presented with moss control, or as weed and feed, or winterizer, or with insect control or with crabgrass preventer or organic foods derived from poultry feathers or fish waste.

Lloyd Marshall Dedrick
Juneau resident Lloyd Marshall Dedrick died Oct. 16, 2002, in Juneau.

Arlene Jeanette Johnson
Juneau resident Arlene Jeanette Johnson died Oct. 10, 2002, at Virginia Mason Hospital in Seattle, Wash.

Public health, women's issues, and Nov. 5
Alaskans who value access to affordable and confidential health care should think carefully before casting their vote for governor on Nov. 5. One of the most striking differences between the leading gubernatorial candidates is their attitudes toward public health and reproductive rights.

My Turn: It's time for new ideas and change
Peter Nakamura has it right that fiscal planning should be realistic but he is wrong if he believes the Knowles-Ulmer tax and spend model is working.We've had eight years under this plan and the impact to salmon sales, lumber and pulp manufacture, and mining has been devastating. It does little good to invent a parachute for state government if we leave the private sector and municipal governments to crash and burn.

Cavs 'Smush' Lakers, 102-101
SAN DIEGO - Rookie Smush Parker hit a 3-pointer with 4.4 seconds left to lift the Cleveland Cavaliers to a 102-101 exhibition victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday night.

Juneau Youth Basketball Standings
Standings from the Juneau Department of Parks and Recreation youth basketball leagues, through games of Oct. 22.

Potomac to Pacific
Like a lot of people, Christopher Wolpert longed to travel across the United States, to see what he calls the "guts" of America.Unlike most, he achieved his dream using pedal power. Wolpert, 29, a 1991 Juneau-Douglas High School graduate, spent much of the past summer seeing diverse regions of the country - Appalachia, the Ozarks, the Great Plains, the Rocky Mountains - from the seat of his mountain bike.

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

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

State Briefs
Fog delays Juneau flights; Meeting to focus on collaboration, tourism; Southeast Conference staff shifts; Holland America exec to head Providence Health System; Anti-war protest planned for Saturday; Anchorage driver killed in trucking mishap

Murkowski, Ulmer debate fiscal gap
FAIRBANKS - Facing off twice in Fairbanks on Tuesday, the two leading candidates for governor held fast to their strikingly different approaches to bringing state spending and income closer together.Republican Sen. Frank Murkowski called Democrat Lt. Gov. Fran Ulmer's approach to the state's fiscal gap "a tax plan" while Ulmer said Murkowski's refusal to consider taxes endangers the state's economy and Alaska Permanent Fund dividends.

Powerful earthquake jolts much of Alaska
PALMER - A strong earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.2 rocked parts of Southcentral and Interior Alaska early today, experts at the Alaska Tsunami Warning Center said.Major damage is unlikely from the quake, which occurred at 3:27 a.m. Alaska time about 85 miles south of Fairbanks and 170 miles northeast of Anchorage, but it jarred residents in both cities and as far as 350 miles away, seismologist Bruce Turner said.

Winter kings not part of annual limit
ANCHORAGE - The state Board of Fisheries has reversed a controversial decision and will allow anglers to continue catching king salmon in winter without deducting them from a five-king annual limit.

Rescue swimmer helped injured in boat fire
ANCHORAGE - From the air, Coast Guardsmen in a C-130 airplane could see three fires burning on board the 180-foot fishing boat Galaxy. Two injured seamen were trapped atop the pilothouse on the stern and three more on the bow.

Candidates address hiring inequities
Legislative hopefuls posed possible solutions to inequities in state hiring of Alaska Natives at a candidate forum held Monday night at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall.A panel of Native leaders said about 6,200 Alaska Natives live in the city of Juneau, but fewer than 4 percent of state employees are Native.

Voters again asked about a Constitutional Convention
ANCHORAGE - Voters again on Nov. 5 will be asked this question: "Shall there be a Constitutional Convention?"As required by the original framers of the Alaska Constitution, the question has appeared every 10 years on the ballot, and each time voters have said no except in 1970 when it was approved by a narrow margin. That decision was later nullified by the Alaska Supreme Court because of what was determined to be misleading ballot wording.

Fish Board backs drafting of marine reserve policy
ANCHORAGE - The Alaska Board of Fisheries has voted unanimously in support of drafting a policy on the protection of marine areas.Such marine reserves can include broad swaths of ocean, often closed to commercial fishing, dredging and oil production. The goal is to foster biodiversity or, in some cases, to help particular species recover from overfishing, pollution or other threats.

Kake schedules runoff election
Kake voters will get another chance to choose a new School Board member next month after discussions about confusing instructions on last month's city ballot.The Kake City Council on Tuesday certified the community's Oct. 1 election results and will schedule a runoff election between Patti Handy and Cheryl Evan for one open seat on the Kake School Board, Mayor Paul Reese said.

Another fisherman lost in search for Galaxy survivors
ANCHORAGE - The search for two men missing from a commercial fishing vessel that exploded and burned in the Bering Sea continued today as Coast Guard officials prepared to launch a formal investigation into the cause of the blast. The Coast Guard today said another man is missing in the area, a commercial fisherman swept overboard this morning from a vessel aiding in search. The man was a crew member of the Clipper Express, a 138-foot Seattle-based vessel that on Sunday had rescued two people swimming in survival suits after they abandoned the burning ship.

Voters to decide state ownership of gas pipeline
ANCHORAGE - A longshoreman is heading an effort to have the state build a natural gas pipeline from the North Slope to Valdez, saying Alaskans have waited too long for big oil to do it.Ballot Measure 3 would set the wheels in motion for a state-owned natural gas pipeline.

Plan targets pike in the Kenai Peninsula
ANCHORAGE - The Soldotna Creek drainage has yielded more than 250 pike since an experimental netting program began in May.The project is part of a broader state and federal effort to size up the extent of the Kenai Peninsula's pike problem.

State Briefs
Hospital changes night entrance; Federal grant aids telemedicine efforts; Quakes strike near False Pass and Alaska-Canada border; EPA seeks input on Point Thomson project;

Alaskan among the missing after Bali attack
ANCHORAGE - A woman who grew up in Eagle River is missing and feared killed in the bomb attack at a Bali nightclub nearly two weeks ago.Megan Heffernan, 29, a college teacher in South Korea, joined four friends on a quick four-day vacation at Bali's Kuta Beach the weekend of Oct. 12, her mother said Tuesday. They went scuba diving during the day that Saturday. Then the two men in the group went back to their hotel rooms. Heffernan and two girlfriends went shopping at about 11 p.m. Saturday.

ATIA wants state funds to lure more visitors
ANCHORAGE - The Alaska Travel Industry Association wants $14 million in state funding to help attract more tourists to the 49th state.The association plans to ask the Legislature for the money following a lukewarm tourist season. While more cruise ship tourists visited Southeast Alaska last season, they spent less money. And tourism up north was below the previous year's levels.

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