Thursday, December 13, 2001

A matter of perspective
Jim Ayers, Gov. Knowles' chief of staff, says in an Empire interview that "Alaska has lost its soul." The cause he believes is money; then curiously throws in church opposition to same-sex marriage and failure of the Legislature to approve a constitutional amendment regarding subsistence as signs of this problem.

Rebuilding broken trust
To the Demmert family of Angoon who lost a loved one and is still grieving. I would like to apologize for the way things were handled aboard the M/V Aurora in your time of grief. I am a deck officer who works both crews of the M/V Leconte. We are the ones who normally service Angoon and would have been doing so during this sad time if we were not late coming out of the yard period in Ketchikan. I am positive this incredible act of callousness would not have happened aboard the M/V Leconte.

News that never grows old
I have a few comments on Mr. Sonin's remarks. William Blake was perspicacious, but not American. (Johnny Depp is American, however.)

Correction
Due to a reporting error, an article in Tuesday's Empire on a benefit slide show about Afghanistan incorrectly identified Deborah Marshall. Marshall is the founder and a board member of the Southeast Alaska Land Trust.

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

Ferry system apologizes to family
Two months after the state ferry Aurora separated a grieving family from the body of a beloved matriarch, the Alaska Marine Highway System has issued a formal apology.

Robber may get 4 years for $5
A $5 robbery could mean four years in prison for a Juneau man. Thomas Evan, 27, accused of robbing two boys of $5 in Susan B. Anthony coins, pleaded guilty to felony coercion Tuesday in Juneau Superior Court. The charge stemmed from an Aug. 13 incident where he threatened two teen-age boys with bodily harm if they did not give him their money.

Phillips says road necessary for Juneau
As lieutenant governor in a Murkowski administration, Gail Phillips said she would support construction of a road linking Skagway and Juneau as a means of securing the capital and legislative sessions in Southeast.

Mendenhall sewage plant compromised by solvent
Operations at the Mendenhall sewage treatment plant are returning to normal today after an estimated 50 gallons of solvent were discharged illegally into the system Monday evening.

Former Juneau educators help Chugach district win major award
A Southcentral Alaska school district recently won a major award from the federal government for its success, and two former Juneau educators played a role in the district's success.

Christmas food, toys and cheer
One Juneau area mother isn't asking for much this Christmas. When she filled out a wish list of gifts for her family to be provided by a St. Vincent de Paul Society sponsor group, she listed only "a happy day" next to her name.

Open house showcases local musicians
The annual holiday open house at the Governor's Mansion attracted a record crowd of cookie tasters and cider sippers on Wednesday - plus bell-ringing, carol-singing entertainers and a traveling volleyball team.

Airport rejects plan to clearcut trees
A controversial proposal to improve safety at the Juneau Airport by cutting a large swath of trees near the floatplane pond is dead. The trees will stay for now.

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

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

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

Ohler: Schools must change
In a world marked by anxiety about technology, teachers will be the heroes who help people use it wisely, says Professor Jason Ohler. For years, Ohler, a professor of educational technology at the University of Alaska Southeast, has put forth his ideas in lectures and academic journals and books. Now Ohler has embodied them in the recently published novel, "Then What?"

Miller, Howell to marry
Erin Miller and Brent Howell, both of Juneau, will be married Saturday, Dec. 15, at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. A reception will follow at 6:30 p.m. in the Cathedral Parish Hall.

Students create gingerbread houses
Students in Life Skills Foods classes at Dzantik'i Heeni Middle School recently completed making gingerbread houses, many of which will be on display today at the Governor's Mansion open house.

'United We Read' set for Dec. 14
First Lady Susan Knowles plans to join in the Read for 2002 "United We Read" campaign held by the Scholastic Book Clubs. On Dec. 14, at noon, she will join students and teachers around the world in reading for 2002 seconds (33 1/3 minutes). She will read to 55 students at Gastineau Elementary School in Douglas, and challenges all schools in Alaska to participate. The program is designed as a celebration of the power of reading to delight, comfort and connect children.

Thank you
...for all the help; ...for the hard work; ..for volunteering, donations; ...for your contribution; ...for your help; ..for the contributions and work ; ..for assisting our family; ..for your generosity and help; ..for all the hard work

Letter: Simple acts of kindness
How do you measure kindness? In what units of measure can you quantify or even acknowledge this indescribable thing? Is it something born of compassion? Empathy? Concern? I wonder because I think I have experienced (and continue to do so) this indescribable thing.

Lindoff, Sharclane wed
Roxanne Jeanette Lindoff and Jason Earl Sharclane, both of Hoonah, were married Saturday, Dec. 8, 2001, at the United Pentecostal Church in Hoonah. A reception followed at the Icy Straits Lodge.

Thank you for your kindness
The staff and residents of Wildflower Court would like to thank the Aldersgate Crusaders for their extraordinary gifts in the form of eight brilliantly crafted lap quilts.

Neighbors briefs
Free legal workshop offered; Relay for Life meeting set; Fund set up for fire victim

Pet Of The Week
Blue, who is named after his blue eyes, is a large 9 month old neutered male husky/malemute mix who is very smart, energetic and playful. He is also good around other dogs.

Tollini, Hansen to marry
Tania Marie Tollini of Ukiah, Calif., and Jeffrey Todd Hansen of Juneau will be married Dec. 15, 2001, in Redwood Valley, Calif.

Celia Elizabeth Wellington
Longtime Alaska resident Celia Elizabeth Wellington died Dec. 8, 2001, at the Juneau Pioneers' Home.

U.S. vs. Zacarias Moussaoui
The indictment of Zacarias Moussaoui for conspiracy in connection with the Sept. 11 attacks is an encouraging sign that the enormous criminal investigation that followed the attacks is making progress.

Prisoners in Afghanistan
Though Osama bin Laden and Taliban ruler Mohammad Omar are still at large, thousands of their followers are now prisoners, and the number is likely to keep growing. Many are being held in Kabul and other cities by a mix of Afghan authorities.

My Turn: Bible makes ultimate science statement
Several months back a series on evolution was presented on PBS-TV (Sept. 24-27). I would like to comment on several aspects of the presentation. So there is no confusion as to my intention by this article, it is to propose evolution not be taught in our public school system.

My Turn: Florida election claims still shaky
A year ago today, the Supreme Court took the matter of choosing our president out of the people's hands. The day they ordered the recount to stop was a nightmare for some of us. We are not necessarily "Gore partisans," as the New York Times labeled us. We are democracy partisans.

Word of Mouth
Word of Mouth gives readers a forum to express opinions on a variety of issues by telephone. Call 586-4636 and press 8255 to leave a message. Be sure to leave your name and telephone number.

Skiing at Eaglecrest was definitely worth the wait
The first day on the slopes is always a special time. For many skiers and snowboarders, it marks the true beginning of winter and a glimpse of what is to be expected from the rest of the season.

Out and About
What's in season and what's going on.

Snow Report
The status of Alaska and Pacific Northwest ski areas.

Skis, boots and boards: A review of available equipment
A variety of equipment is available from ski and snowboard shops in Juneau and the Pacific Northwest.

Going for gear
Ed Hansen, a 30-year downhill ski veteran, used to buy his gear in Juneau. Since Adventure Sports closed last January, Hansen has had to search the Web for the lowest prices and contact stores by phone. He admits the biggest problem is fitting for boots.

Rodda: Juneau can host Arctic Winter Games
When the towns of Chugiak and Eagle River were awarded the rights to host the 1996 Arctic Winter Games, there were really about five separate communities in the area and sometimes they just didn't get along.

Basketball Standings
Standings from the Juneau Parks and Recreation Department's Ordway Basketball League, 2001-02 regular-season standings through games of Dec. 9.

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

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

Juneau girls open season in Nikiski
After two years of watching Ketchikan represent Region V-Class 4A at the state tournament, the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team is ready to book its own trip this season.

Juneau wrestlers head to state
Riding high, but not too high, from their first Region V title in four years, 17 Juneau-Douglas High School Crimson Bearss will try to carry their team's momentum to the state wrestling tournament at Kenai Central High School in Kenai beginning today.

State Briefs
Board opens Kenai Peninsula waters to subsistence fishing; State, feds agree on Adak cleanup; Park service plans $22 million information center for Denali

Senators balk at Native wireless deal
FAIRBANKS - Two U.S. senators are raising objections to a proposed deal that would let three Alaska Native corporations keep control of wireless telephone radio frequencies purchased in January.

Budget includes Alaska missile defense test sites
FAIRBANKS - New missile defense testing sites in Alaska appear to be on track for inclusion in the Defense Department's annual spending bill.

Knowles wants more money for oil, gas oversight
Gov. Tony Knowles wants $4.8 million more to strengthen oversight of Alaska's aging oil facilities and streamline new oil and gas exploration.

FBI investigation into Alaska hate crime leads to bank fraud arrest
ANCHORAGE - A Syrian-born businessman who received thousands of dollars in support after someone spray-painted "We hate Arabs" and broke equipment at his business days after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks was arrested Tuesday on bank fraud charges.

Governor's child initiatives stress early action
In his annual State of the Child address this afternoon in Anchorage, Gov. Tony Knowles was to call for beefed up efforts to improve health, safety and education for young Alaskans.

Alaska tourism group proposes marketing blitz
The Alaska Travel Industry Association has come up with a plan to combat an expected drop in tourism with an aggressive marketing campaign featuring television, print advertising and direct mail.

State Briefs
Two men arrested for murder of Anchorage woman; Salmon found in Petaluma, 2,000 miles from home; Alaska Rep. unhappy with highway fund changes; Alaska predicts improved sockeye run; Youth shelter worker charged with abuse

Phillips Petroleum to reduce Alaska spending
ANCHORAGE - Phillips Petroleum plans to spend $807 million in capital projects for its Alaska oil business next year, down $18 million from this year's budget.

Pentagon releases bin Laden video
WASHINGTON - Osama bin Laden contentedly recalled the Sept. 11 attacks against America on a videotape released today by the Pentagon, saying the destruction exceeded his estimates and the events "benefited Islam greatly."

Audit alleges possible fraud at state agency
A new audit says the state Division of Senior Services may have committed fraud by inappropriately allocating $120,000 in Medicaid dollars.

Coyotes, magic and a dance potpourri
T he story of a goose with a dream will be told in dance. Alexei Badrak, ballet master and director for Juneau Dance Unlimited, has modified the children's book "Albert's Play" to create a ballet with 21 short scenes. This weekend, JDU presents a "Winter Dance Concert" including "Albert's Play" and other performances by JDU students. The three performances will be at 1 and 7 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. Sunday at the JDU studio.

What's happening
Concerts

What's Where & When
"Hardball," (PG-13) ends tonight, last show at 7 at the 20th Century Twin.

'Messiah'returns
L ena Simmons first sang Handel's glorious oratorio "Messiah" in West Virginia and subsequently with the Juneau Lyric Opera in 1988.

Afghanistan slides, 'Messiah' among week's top picks
Probably the only Americans in Afghanistan these days are mercenaries, Marines and military advisors. But 25 years ago, before a Soviet invasion, a coup and a couple of civil wars, Dick Marshall and his wife, Chrissie, spent a month traveling through Afghanistan's northern provinces.

Local Briefs
Studio art show opens' Fairbanks Fine Arts Camp on two-year hiatus; Arts fellowships available

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