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Sunday, October 28, 2001

Novel treats coming of age in Alaska
Set on the Situk and Ahrnklin rivers, "Where the Mountains are Nameless" is a tale of innocence being lost over the course of a single summer. Several different worlds intersect: traditional Tlingit, modern Tlingit, Bush and city, rich and poor.

In the Stacks
This week, we're featuring all new fiction for Juneau Public Libraries patrons!

Southeast cave reveals clues to ancient Alaska
While exploring a cave in Southeast Alaska a few years ago, Tim Heaton found the leg bones of a large brown bear and a black bear. He expected the bones to be like others in the area - fossils from animals that lived about 10,000 years ago - but these bears were different. Radiocarbon dating showed they lived about 40,000 years ago.

Underground exploration
The cave enthusiasts have left the cold, dank recesses beneath the rain forest of Southeast Alaska. The results of their summer exploration of the underworld of the Tongass are now transferred to notebooks and memories. But the work continues for U.S. Forest Service geologist Jim Baichtal. In the months to come, he will digest the annual research done on the vast, but little-known caves of Southeast Alaska. The latest findings will be incorporated into future timber harvest policy.

Responding appropriately
The Empire published a letter recently concerning a fire department response to a tragic event. The members of Capital City Fire and Rescue share in the writer's sadness and extend our sympathies to the family of the man we cared for that night.

Real benefit
I read with interest the article of the Point Retreat lighthouse controversy. I think it's a no-brainer.

Judge for yourself
It is time for the Assembly, Planning Commission, staff and citizens of Juneau to call DOT&PF to be accountable!

Lighthouse underdogs
Thanks for the article on Point Retreat. I think the Alaska Lighthouse Association is doing a great job.

Dock access and Joy
I don't know whose idea it was to shut off the city dock to access by the public in the first place but the logic escapes me. Who is being protected from whom? There is a reason it is called a "city, public" dock. It belongs to us the citizens of Juneau not to the cruise ship companies.

Silly statements
Joel Orelove's silly remarks about Sen. Frank Murkowski in Word of Mouth was uncalled for. The senator gave serious thought four years ago about running for governor and decided against it. Also, the senator announced many, many months ago he would make up his mind about running for governor in the fall.

Photo: It's here, finally
Shanye Howard, 11, left, and Juan Quintanilla, 14, ride their bikes on a snow-covered sidewalk in Douglas on Saturday morning. Estimates of snowfall ranged from a half-inch in some areas downtown to the five inches measure by the National Weather Service in the Mendenhall Valley.

Around Town
Sunday, Oct. 28

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

JDHS Drill Team back on its feet
The Juneau-Douglas High School Drill Team would like you to know that, to paraphrase Mark Twain, reports of their demise are greatly exaggerated.<

Accepting best efforts
First came the death notice. A man only 40 years old, a husband and father, stricken suddenly and fatally. The obituary was proper and correct, yet somehow insufficient. A family and a community share the loss of someone whose life was more than printed words.

My Turn: What? Tongass only 4th most endangered?
The National Forest Protection Alliance - whoever the outfit is, and whatever its expertise - lists the Tongass National Forest as fourth among the 10 most endangered national forests in the nation.

Good works, good results
Hired any good employees lately? Juneau businesses that work with Linda Esther of Juneau Works have. Esther has placed more than 100 employees in the workplaces of dozens of local businesses and state and federal agencies one job at a time over the last three years.

Word of Mouth
Word of Mouth gives readers a forum to express opinions on a variety of issues by telephone. Calls must be limited to one minute.

Sports In Juneau
Today, Oct. 28

Crimson Bears go unbeaten in region
The Juneau-Douglas High School volleyball team completed a perfect season in Region V-Class 4A play with a pair of victories over Sitka on Friday and Saturday nights.

Dedicated to success
Mark Bucat paces the sides of the August G. Brown Swimming Pool hollering instruction aided by hand signals and body language.

State's terrorism scares continue
Some airplanes in Alaska were grounded for about an hour Friday after a suspicious package was found on Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage, near a Federal Aviation Administration building.

Bill targets former military weapons
Language in a U.S. Senate military funding bill that could force people to destroy their old military guns and equipment will be removed before it becomes law, Sen. Ted Stevens said late last week.

New taxes, fund earnings thought to be fiscal solutions
As Dickens said, it's the best and worst of times. Financially, Alaska is in great shape. The state has nearly $27 billion in its two largest savings funds, more than 11 times this year's budget for providing basic state services. That's a mountain of cash - roughly $43,000 per resident - that is unmatched by any other state.

State Briefs
Crashed helicopter found; Congress puts off Native hearing; NANA Corp. head to retire; Court upholds mayoral veto

$1 billion deficit may bring about long-range plan
Most Alaskans seem to agree that the state needs a long-range plan to balance its budget. But nothing is likely to happen until there's a crisis, some say. Opinion polls show general recognition of a budget problem.

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