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Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Constitution of privacy needs change
When it comes to the welfare of our children, we parents are the ones who know them best and have to deal with them in sickness and health. We know their allergies. Planned Parenthood does not.

Is building the road progress?
Chris Watson's letter on Nov. 22 is both interesting and amusing. His reason for the road being built is progress. Who can be against that? Where would one draw the line?

Maintaining hope, even in November
You can tell the days are getting short in Juneau when you read My Turns titled, "Why Try? It may be Hopeless." (Nov. 27) Yikes. Somebody plug in the Seasonal Affect Disorder lights.

Poll should ask a different question
The Empire's front page article regarding the Juneau access road reported on the wrong poll. The newspaper should have reported the results of a recent poll taken by Juneau Rep. Andrea Doll. That poll shows that 68 percent of Juneau residents support construction of the road.

Reservoirs low due to hydro power
I'm writing in response to Jon Torrella's Nov. 30 letter regarding water levels in the lakes that supply Juneau's hydro plants.

Council urges single sports program
The Juneau-Douglas High School Site Council recently recommended that Thunder Mountain High School, under construction in the Mendenhall Valley, not offer junior varsity sports in its first year.

Fire destroys home in Valley
A landlord thawing frozen pipes with a butane torch under a mobile home in the Mendenhall Valley started a blaze that destroyed the single-wide home Tuesday morning, Juneau fire officials said.

Photo: Hanukkah celebration
Two Juneau families light candles for their menorahs Tuesday, the first day of Hanukkah. Suzy Cohen, top left, assists her sons, Orion and Gabe Cohen. Jesse Kiehl, top right, lights a candle under the watch of his daughters, Tsitira Kiehl and Adara Allen.

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

Bartlett Regional Hospital plans orthopedic center
Bartlett Regional Hospital plans to develop an orthopedic center, announced hospital CEO Shawn Morrow on Tuesday.

Correction
A photo cutline on page A4 of Monday's Empire misidentified the photographer. Carrie Hulse submitted the photo of a rescue dog digging in the snow during a SEADOGS training session.

Around Town

Photo: Cold Snap
Runa Skeie, a foreign exchange student from Norway, tries to keep warm Monday as she waits for a bus on Glacier Avenue. "I like it when it's not raining," Skeie said. The temperature was a frigid 5 degrees in downtown Juneau. Today's forecast calls for increasing clouds and a high of 18.

Around Town

Kensington to submit application for permits
Coeur Alaska is expected to apply for permits for a new paste tailings plan for the Kensington gold mine in the next few weeks, according to Juneau Mayor Bruce Botelho.

Munoz to run for Doll's House seat
Former Juneau Assembly member Cathy Munoz announced Tuesday she plans to run in the 2008 election for Rep. Andrea Doll's seat in the House of Representatives.

Photo: Frozen art
An ice sculpture by an unknown artist sits on the shore of Mendenhall Lake near the Mendenhall Visitor Center.

Report: Ferry office needs upgrades
Alaska transportation officials are reconsidering whether to purchase the building occupied by the state ferry headquarters in Ketchikan after an engineer's report showed it could require a $7 million upgrade.

City at impasse over sewer project
The Juneau Assembly could not muster the eight out of nine votes required Monday night to override a Local Improvement District 97 vote against a landowner payment formula for the city's $4.5 million sewer expansion project.

Photo: Capsized on land
A skiff is tipped over after a blast of windy weather Monday next to First Street in Douglas. The owner was waiting for the high winds to calm down before turning it over to put it back on its trailer. The strongest gust of wind recorded in the Juneau area near sea level was 68 mph at 8:40 a.m. in south Douglas.

Photo: Holiday fundraising
Sherry Drake, right, buys some raffle tickets from Pam Thompson of the U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officers Association on Sunday at the Nugget Mall. Raffle ticket sales benefit the Juneau Senior Citizen Holiday Dinner.

Weather wreaks havoc on ski plans
A dry November and two days of high winds this week withered hopes that Eaglecrest Ski Area would open on time this Saturday.

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

Pets of the week
Come visit three fair felines from 3 to 6 p.m. Monday-Friday or 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday at the Gastineau Humane Society.

Optometrist Shannon Farr joins SEARHC eye clinic
The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium announces optometrist Shannon Farr, O.D., has joined the permanent staff at the SEARHC Ethel Lund Medical Center Eye Clinic in Juneau.

Hanukkah: A celebration and a testament
Hanukkah has always been one of my favorite times of year.

Gift ideas for the cat people on your list
Annie, my golden-haired fluffball, was doing the whirling dervish. Spinning on her hind legs, she'd give a little hop, then pounce and smack something across the laminate floor.

Sitka Wellness Coalition Honors Mount Edgecumbe High School
The Sitka Employee Wellness Coalition has honored Mount Edgecumbe High School with its Well Workplace of the Month award for December.

Photo: Alaska Native Sisterhood officers
Emcee Delores Cadiente presents Micalyne Kunz with a gavel to symbolize her authority as the re-elected Alaska Native Sisterhood Camp 2 president.

Elder remains homeless after his boat sinks in Auke Bay
While the rest of us lay in our warm, dry beds dreaming of turkey and good times with friends and family in the early morning hours last Thursday, Tom Carpenter was woken up by his faithful boat cat, Princess. Her important message? "Abandon ship boss, the boat is sinking!"

Holiday craft fairs galore
Crafters showed off their stuff at a craft fair on Nov. 4 at the Nugget Mall.

Neighbors Digest
Winter Ball to be held Saturday; Dance studio to host Sugar Plum Fairy party; Annual Singing Christmas Tree concerts to be held Dec. 7 through 10; Check out University's Cooperative Extension Service for brochure on Christmas trees

Neighbors mailbox
Thanks for help with tree and Santa projects; Thank you to Steve Baseden for hosting Skate with Santa.; Thanks for providing support over the years; Thanks for help with Thanksgiving dinner; Thanks from theJuneau Soccer Club; Thanks to Fred Meyer Foundation for grant; Thanks for help with kids' concert

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Charles F. Stedman
Former Juneau and Sitka resident Charles F. "Chuck" Stedman, of Sacramento, Calif., died Nov. 25, 2007, of lung cancer at Sitka Community Hospital while visiting for Thanksgiving with relatives. He was 76.

My Turn: High cost of living not restricted to the Bush
I read the article in the Empire about the noble effort by the Legislature wanting to help low income homeowners with the high cost of heating oil and have some comments regarding this.

Juneau's garbage plan off to a good beginning
Last week the Juneau Assembly took an overt step toward solving the capital city's solid-waste problem. This step was the culmination of many years of study, which most recently included the hiring of consultants to evaluate where we are, where we are going, and how we may want to change direction.

My Turn: Plan should address needs for all students
Based on the current plan, Juneau will have two basically equal, theme-based high schools. As a parent of two students, I have many reservations and concerns about it.

My Turn: Creating rural jobs while saving the Alaska soul
Fourteen people showed up at Elfin Cove's community potluck Thanksgiving dinner. This was somewhat surprising because the year-round population of the isolated Southeast community had dropped off to single digits in recent years.

Outside editorial: Chavez isn't finished
On election days in Caracas, fireworks and bugles awaken voters in districts known to support Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, who controls all branches of government and has cowed or taken over most of the media.

Outside editorial: Piling abuse atop borrowers in trouble
It's bad enough that record numbers of people are losing homes because of mortgages they couldn't afford and should never have gotten. Mortgage companies shouldn't add insult to injury by overcharging borrowers already in foreclosure.

Outside editorial: Saudi whiplash
Saudi Arabia's foreign minister, Saud al-Faisal, basked in praise and attention from the Bush administration at last week's Annapolis peace conference.

Big third period lifts Ice Pirates
The Ice Pirates struck for three goals in the third period and survived a late rush by Island Pub to secure a 4-3 victory Sunday in Juneau Adult Hockey Association Tier A action at Treadwell Arena.

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.

Sports Digest
Youth wrestling club registration open; Dodgeball tourney starts today

Photo: Juneau Jugs
The Juneau JUGS have successfully completed their 60-mile walk in San Diego to raise funds for the Susan G. Komen Foundation, which supports breast cancer research and philanthropic efforts.

Parks and rec Ordway Basketball League standings

Boozer elected into AK Sports Hall of Fame
Carlos Boozer, a 1999 graduate of Juneau-Douglas High School, is among this year's inductees into the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame.

Alaska Club announces fall tourney results
Tournament was Nov. 29-Dec. 2.

Medical helicopter carrying patient, three others vanishes
Poor visibility Tuesday hampered searchers looking for a medical helicopter that vanished in blowing snow while carrying a patient and medical crew over mountainous coastal terrain.

Alaska Digest
Mayor asks board to reinstate snow dump; Jury convicts couple of firearms violations; Road project critics hold presentation; Education board seeks commissioner; State department hires new executive

Alaska Digest
Calendar for next school year released; Firewood gathering allowed on state land; Suspect in violent spree appears in court; Coast Guard rescues five stranded on ice; Alaska voter rolls will be updated; K9 handler, dog to receive bronze star

Man charged with murder in day-long spree
Police have arrested a 28-year-old man accused of murdering two people, including his father, and injuring three others in a day-long series of gun and machete attacks in two Alaska cities, authorities said Monday.

Kott cites good works, seeks short sentence
Convicted former legislator Pete Kott is asking for a shorter sentence than prosecutors want, saying the bribes he took were so small they don't merit the lengthy sentence they are suggesting.

Fairbanks' City Council discusses police practices
Police assistance from state and federal law enforcement is up for discussion in Fairbanks.

This Day in History
In Alaska, in the Nation and the World

Health care plan readied for lawmakers
A team of experts Gov. Sarah Palin asked to study Alaska's growing health-care problem is setting some ambitious goals and proposing modest steps to get there.

This Day in History
In Alaska and in the Nation

Former oil executives optimistic about natural gas pipeline bids
Former oil company executives see hopeful signs in the results of bidding for a natural gas pipeline tapping Alaska's North Slope reserves.

Groups ask court to block Shell's oil drilling plans
Environmental and Native Alaskan groups asked a federal appeals court Tuesday to block Royal Dutch Shell's plans for exploratory drilling near the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

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