Wednesday, December 17, 2003

Say no to smoking ban
Have you asked bar patrons and employees how they feel about a smoking ban?

Smoking - or not - is a legal choice
People seem to forget that tobacco is not an illegal substance. Until it is, people have the right to use it or not as they choose. And private property owners should have the right to allow it or disallow it as they choose. The public can choose whether to patronize those establishments or not.

That's some way to treat friends
I'm writing this letter in regards to Ione Ackerman's letter titled "Yes, gay marriage is a threat." The letter states that "in order to maintain a healthy, organized society we need to draw the line on many issues and gay marriage is one of them." I beg to differ.

Road will be good for business in Skagway
I endorse the Juneau Access Road. I have come to this decision because I have gone beyond the rhetoric and the fallacies I was told and once believed. I reviewed the facts and am basing my decision on what I have learned.

Social change doesn't alter true marriage
Concerning the letter "Gay lifestyle undermines fabric of society" (Dec. 12) by Jackie Woolf: I agree with this writer that there is simply no evidence that the primary purpose of marriage has evolved to include gays and lesbians.

Majority not always right
One piece of the argument to control smoking in Juneau's bars is that it is the will of the majority. That may be true, but that doesn't make it the right decision.

There's a wolf-like problem Down Under
We have this so-called big, bad wolf problem - or should I say a man-made problem of dingos? Fraser Island is a world Heritage area in Queensland. Like your black bears, people feed the wild dingo and the wild dingos become problem dingos.

Disputing claims about homosexuality
Ms. Woolf makes a number of erroneous statements, to put it charitably. Exactly what "benefits" is she alluding to regarding marriage? Is spousal abuse one such benefit? What about incest? Also, where is the evidence regarding pedophilia more clearly documented than recently among members of Christian organizations?

The time is way past due for a road
"Build the road Juneau to Skagway" bumper stickers are showing up on more and more vehicles in Skagway, Juneau, Sitka and even in Whitehorse, Yukon. People are speaking out on the subject of the East Lynn Canal Road and Juneau Access, and are not afraid to show their support for the road.

Fans line up for 'Rings' final episode
Just after 11 a.m. Tuesday morning, 18-year-old movie buff Keith Shepro arrived at 20th Century Theater on Front Street. It was less than 32 hours until the Juneau premiere of "The Lord of The Rings: The Return of the King" at 7 p.m. today, and he was first in line.

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

Panel creates subcommittees to take on city dog problems
Creating three subcommittees would be a better way to address dog-related problems in Juneau than a survey of the community, the city's dog task force decided Monday.

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

Budget plan: New taxes, 402 fewer jobs
Gov. Frank Murkowski laid out his 2005 budget Monday, calling for new taxes on tourism, smoking and pulltabs, and the elimination of 402 state jobs.

Photo: City of slush
Dan Teske of the city's Street Division clears slush Monday from Marine Way. Rain and up to two more inches of snow were expected to fall by today.

Offices celebrate the season by giving
Food will be shared and Christmas music will chime in the background, but staff at public radio station KTOO will be wrapping gifts instead of opening them.

Photos: The busiest mail day of the year
Monday was expected to be the busiest day of the year for the U.S. Postal Service, according to postal officials. The local post office received 35,858 pounds of incoming mail over the weekend and shipped out 30,401 pounds of mail.

Correction
Due to a reporter error, Friday's story about Alaska State Employees Association business manager Jim Duncan incorrectly stated that Donn Liston was a business manager of ASEA. Liston was a business agent.

Photo: Holiday ring
Rotarian Bob Merritt rings a bell during the Salvation Army kettle drive as Noah Williams, 4, drops in a donation. Juneau Rotary Club members will be ringing bells until Christmas in front of the First National Bank of Anchorage on Front Street.

Photo: Celebrating the capture with coffee
Misti Hogberg, right, owner of Jordan Creek Coffee, pours free coffee for Roger Porto on Monday. An anonymous donor paid for customers' coffee Monday in celebration of the capture of Saddam Hussein by U.S. forces over the weekend.

Southeast educator honored nationally
After serving Sitka and Juneau for 20 years in local community schools programs, Joyce Kitka has a national endorsement confirming what some of her colleagues knew all along.

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

SEADOGS track down lost Skagway hunter
Two Juneau search and rescue members found a cold and wet overdue hunter early Tuesday.

Murkowski eyes cuts to 115 state jobs
Gov. Frank Murkowski's budget plan released on Monday will cut 402 state positions next year, but state Budget Director Cheryl Frasca said the positions identified for cuts could change before the fiscal year 2005 budget kicks in.

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

Photo: Alaska's poet laureate, circa 1950
Gov. and Mrs. Ernest Gruening (second from right) present a scroll to Alaska's former poet laureate, Carol Beery Davis. Poet laureates were named in Alaska first by the Poetry Society of Alaska, which initiated the honor in 1963, and then by the Alaska State Council on the Arts after 1987.

Commission reviews plans for new school
The Juneau Planning Commission had few questions for people presenting plans for the new Valley high school Tuesday night.

... to anonymous donor
We, the students of Ms. Skiman Jones' class at Auke Bay School, would like to thank the anonymous donor that gave $100 to our class. In your letter, you stated that we were a nice class and you liked how nicely we treated one another.

A partial chronology of Juneau slides
A look at local landslides.

Southeast's academic decathlon students vie for honors in marathon
On Dec. 5 and 6, academic decathlon students from Southeast Alaska pitted their mental prowess against each other in a grueling two-day testing marathon.

Li'l Man is tailless breed, friendly but not cloying
Li'l Man is a Manx, the breed of cat that has no tail. His short, shiny coat is all black except for a little fringe of white bib.

Student honors
Recognition given to local students.

Bun-rab is litter-box trained, hops
Snowflake is a cuddly "house rabbit," used to hopping around the house instead of living in a cage. (Yes, she knows what a litter box is for.)

... for support for Take Back the Night march
On Oct. 24, 2003, AWARE Inc. held its Take Back the Night march, chili feed and dance as a finale to Domestic Violence Awareness month.

Photo: Restored, donated
This painting of the Mendenhall Glacier was done in 1932 in Juneau by George Beymer, a self-styled "tramp artist" who came to Alaska in 1904.

Neighbors Digest
Community news in brief.

... for helping Operation Christmas Child
... for support for Take Back the Night march

Southeast Sagas: Slide
Rock and dirt slides and snow avalanches are nothing new to Juneau. All of the city's recorded history tells of disasters of this sort, some of which took lives in addition to damaging nerves and property. Slides are to be expected in territory where there are steep hillsides and mountain slopes that feel the annual impact of hundreds of inches of precipitation, both liquid and solid.

Gary E. Nulph
Douglas resident Gary E. Nulph, 63, died from a longtime illness Dec. 12, 2003.

Thomas Young Sr.
Thomas Young Sr., 97, died Dec. 12 at SEARHC-Mt. Edgecumbe Hospital.

My Turn: Marriage, biblical teachings not threatened by domestic partners
I t's a Biblical disagreement, not a threat. Everyone who credits the success of their marriage to the denial of same-sex marriages, please raise your hands.

My Turn: Schools wrong if they opt to ban 'Merry Christmas'
Last year during our school system's "winter holiday" (once known as Christmas break), we were approached by a young mom asking if we would look into a problem that had upset her son at his elementary school just before the break. Asking him what the problem was, we were shocked at this response: "I was sent out of the room because I said 'Merry Christmas' to kids in my class."

A trial by fire
The Juneau-Douglas High School boys basketball team will have its youngest roster in several years this season. But the young Crimson Bears weren't given any breaks with their schedule, and they won't be able to ease into the season.

Class 1A-2A-3A state wrestling
The final results from the Class 1A-2A-3A state wrestling tournament held Friday and Saturday at Anchorage Christian Schools.

34 and counting
he Cleveland Cavaliers made a big trade Monday in hopes of turning around their losing ways on the road. The new additions didn't arrive soon enough. Jermaine O'Neal had 24 points, 10 rebounds and six assists to help the Indiana Pacers send LeBron James and the short-handed Cavaliers to their 34th consecutive road loss, 95-85 Monday night.

Thirty-five mushers registered for the 2004 Yukon Quest
Thirty-five mushers have signed up for the 1,000-mile Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race and one-third of them are rookies.

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 in Juneau
Sports in Juneau is a service provided by the Juneau Empire to provide information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

2003 coho run on Yukon River breaks record
Yukon River salmon are back. The river recorded its best fall chum run in five years and a record-breaking coho run.

Federal funds to provide job retraining for fishermen
The state is receiving up to $8 million in federal funds to provide job retraining for fishermen and seafood industry employees affected by the salmon price decline, the state's labor commissioner said Monday.

Stevens: Federal funds for Alaska projects in doubt
WASHINGTON - Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens said he doesn't have the votes to pass the $820 billion government spending bill and Congress is likely to scrap the legislation if the Senate doesn't approve it soon after it reconvenes Jan. 20.

Logging camp turns into halfway house
Alaska Native groups are converting a Southeast logging camp into a minimum-security justice center based on Tlingit traditions.

State to retool school exams
Alaska students can expect to see a new set of statewide tests - including the High School Graduation Qualifying Exam - beginning next fall. Officials with the state Department of Education say the change is one way to bring the state into compliance with federal education law.

This Day in History
In Alaska; in the nation.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Alaska employers prepare for 20 percent rise in insurance rates
Employers in Alaska are bracing for the biggest hike in workers' compensation insurance rates since 1988. The changes effective Jan. 1 could mean higher costs for goods and services for consumers.

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