Back to

The Juneau Daily News

Latest Edition

Weekly Poll | News Center | Weather | Site Map | Air staff | Help | Contact Us | Home

Established March 13, 1995 "Alaska's First Online Newspaper"
greenbar.gif (834 bytes)


'News of the North’ content copyright of Alaska Broadcast Communications Inc. and Juneau Alaska Communications LLC. Any unauthorized use will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

[Tuesday August 19th, 2014  14TH  EDITION 8:48 P. M.]

Coffee with a Cop
The Juneau Police Department is pleased to announce participation in a new program called “Coffee with a Cop”. The purpose of the program is to provide a venue for citizens to interact with officers in a relaxed setting to help facilitated a question and answer session. “Coffee with a Cop” is a nationwide program and their motto is “Building partnerships one cup of coffee at a time.”

Lieutenant David Campbell says, "JPD’s first ever 'Coffee with a Cop' event will be held on Wednesday August 27th, from 9:00AM – 10:00 AM, at Heritage Coffee located at 216 2nd Street in Juneau. Coffee is not being provided, but will be available for purchase. Chief Bryce Johnson and Officer Jim Quinto are looking forward to meeting everyone and sharing a cup of coffee."

2 Democrats seek lieutenant governor nomination
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Two Democrats running for Alaska lieutenant governor are seeking their party's nomination in Tuesday's primary, with the victor facing presumed Republican winner, Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan, in the November general election.

Democrats running are state Senate Minority Leader Hollis French of Anchorage and Palmer math teacher Bob Williams. Sullivan faces minimal opposition.

Current Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell is seeking the GOP nomination for the U.S. Senate seat held by Democrat Mark Begich.

Independent lieutenant governor candidate Craig Fleener is running in the general with independent gubernatorial hopeful Bill Walker.

In Alaska, the party candidates for governor and lieutenant governor run as a ticket.

French, who lost the Democratic gubernatorial nomination in 2010, decided to support Byron Mallott for governor this time and instead seek to become Alaska's next lieutenant governor.

Little drama expected in Alaska US House primaries
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Little drama is expected in Alaska's U.S. House race, where Republican Rep. Don Young faces a handful of poorly funded, low-profile candidates in his quest for a 22nd term.

On the Democratic side, the party endorsed political upstart Forrest Dunbar ahead of Tuesday's primary. He faces perennial candidate Frank Vondersaar.

The focus has been on Young and Dunbar. Young enters the race with a huge cash advantage and plenty of name recognition, but Dunbar has been crisscrossing the state, making his pitch for a change in leadership.

Young, who has made recent headlines for gaffes, released an ad in which he described himself as intense and less-than-perfect. But he also said he would never stop fighting for Alaska.

Dunbar has relied heavily on social media for his messaging.

Alaska voters to pick oil company tax system
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska voters will decide Tuesday whether to retain an oil production tax system revised last year in hopes of attracting more wells that will fill the trans-Alaska pipeline.

Critics call it a giveaway that awards tax breaks to already profitable oil companies with no guarantee they will invest in Alaska.

A "yes" on Ballot Measure No. 1 is a vote to repeal a production tax approved in 2013 by Republican lawmakers at the urging of Gov. Sean Parnell. It replaced a measure championed by Parnell's predecessor, Sarah Palin.

Known as "Alaska's Clear and Equitable Share," or ACES, the Palin law gave tax credits for investment but contained a progressive surcharge that companies said ate too deeply into profits, discouraging new investment. The "progressivity" was designed to share profits when oil prices were high, and over its seven years on the books, helped replenish state savings accounts.

Alaska gubernatorial races expected to heat up
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Front-runners in Alaska's gubernatorial race plan to put their campaigns in high gear after Tuesday's primary.

Republican incumbent Gov. Sean Parnell and Democratic challenger Byron Mallott are expected to easily win their respective primaries.

Their victories would set up a three-way battle with independent candidate Bill Walker in the weeks leading to the November general election. Libertarian Carolyn Clift also is running.

So far, gubernatorial campaigns have largely been eclipsed by contentious runs for a U.S. Senate seat and a ballot referendum to repeal the state's new system for taxing oil companies.

Walker finished second behind Parnell in the 2010 Republican gubernatorial race. This time, he is bypassing the primary. Instead, he opted to gather signatures to qualify as unaffiliated candidate rather than make another run for the GOP nomination.

Sheriff: Ex-Marine inquired about body disposal
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) — Authorities say a former Marine charged with murder after the body of his alleged lover was found in an abandoned California mine shaft had been looking into how to dispose of a human body.

A San Bernardino County sheriff's investigator says in court paperwork filed Tuesday that 24-year-old Christopher Lee admitted conducting Internet searches on human body disposal.

The investigator also says .22-caliber fired casings and rebar were recovered with the body of 19-year-old Erin Corwin and the head stamp from the casings matched those on casings found in Lee's vehicle and residence.

Lee was arrested Sunday in Anchorage, Alaska, a day after Corwin's body was found.

Corwin, a married woman who used to be Lee's neighbor, went missing in June.

JPD Quarterly Awards Ceremony
Juneau Police Department Tuesday honored a Juneau youth and two officers at their Quarterly Awards Ceremony.

On November 22nd, 2013, 9 year old Juneau resident Peyton Carson was playing with a friend, who fell and hit her head causing an injury. Peyton called 911 and provided the dispatcher with information that led to paramedics responding and treating Peyton’s friend. For her quick response and actions, Peyton Carson is being awarded the Juneau Police Department Citizen’s Certificate of Merit.

On June 7th, 2014, Officer Blain Hatch and Officer Jim Quinto were walking on foot in the downtown area. At approximately 3:29 PM, JPD received a report of an unresponsive male in the bathroom of a bar located on Franklin Street. Within seconds, Officer Hatch and Officer Quinto arrived at the bar. The man had no pulse and was not breathing. Officers opened the man’s airway, called for an ambulance, and began CPR. Within two and a half minutes, paramedics arrived and took over CPR. Paramedics were able to regain the man’s pulse. The man was taken to the Bartlett Regional Hospital and then flown to Providence Medical Center in Anchorage. For their quick response and actions, both Officer Blain Hatch and Officer Jim Quinto are being awarded the Juneau Police Department Life Saving Medal.

Alaska has 2 Dan Sullivans on the ballot
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska Republican voters might think they're seeing double on Tuesday's ballot with two Dan Sullivans running for higher office.

Dan Sullivan, the former state attorney general and natural resources commissioner, is seeking the Republican party nomination for the U.S. Senate seat held by Democrat Sen. Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election.

The other Dan Sullivan — or the "original" Dan Sullivan, as he has referred to himself because he's older— is the Republican mayor of Anchorage, known for his political battles with labor unions. He is seeking the GOP nomination for lieutenant governor.

Alaska holds referendum on oil company taxes
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska voters will decide if their old system for taxing oil companies is better than the new one.

The referendum on Tuesday's ballot asks voters if they want to reject the 2013 law, championed by Gov. Sean Parnell. It replaced the production tax that was pushed by former Gov. Sarah Palin.

Critics say Palin's plan was an investment killer. It gave tax credits for investment, but contained a progressive surcharge that companies say ate too deeply into profits.

Referendum advocates contend Parnell could have fine-tuned Palin's oil tax measure but instead pushed the new law, which they say gives tax breaks to profitable petroleum companies at the expense of revenue that belongs to the people of Alaska.

US Senate race draws focus in Alaska primary
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska's primary election is today as three Republicans wage a contentious campaign to take on U.S. Sen. Mark Begich in the fall.

The race is important to Republicans nationally since Begich, a first-term incumbent Democrat, is seen as vulnerable and the GOP needs a net gain of six seats to take control of the Senate.

The Alaska GOP Senate race mirrors national trends, with tea party conservatives trying to knock out mainstream Republicans. The race features former state attorney general and natural resources commissioner Dan Sullivan, current Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and tea party favorite and 2010 GOP primary winner Joe Miller.

Sullivan has the support of national Republican power brokers and groups like Club for Growth. Miller is largely considered a wild card and long-shot, while Treadwell has cast himself as the "electable" conservative.

Primary Election Day 2014
Today is Primary Election Day in Alaska. Polls are open from 7 am to 8 pm. If you are not sure where to vote you may call 1-888-383-8683 or visit

The primary will decide the hard-fought, first-round battle for U.S. Senate in Alaska and whether to reinstate an oil tax system that was a legacy of Sarah Palin's short tenure as governor.

Here are five more things to know about the primary:

—BIG MONEY: Alaska's U.S. Senate race is the first major race in the state during the era of super PACs and it comes with high stakes: Republicans see the state as key to their efforts to wrest back control of the chamber. The seat is currently held by a first-term Democratic incumbent, Mark Begich, who is putting up a hard fight.

In the lead-up to the primary, a super PAC backing Begich spent about $4 million against the presumptive GOP front-runner, former state Attorney General Dan Sullivan. About $1.2 million has been spent against Begich, according to the web-based Influence Tracker, with millions more waiting in the wings heading toward the general election.

—SENATE SLATE: Begich's only primary opposition is from a Brooklyn, New York, man who has been a non-factor. The Republican contest is considered a three-man race between Sullivan, Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller. The Libertarian and Alaskan Independence parties are fielding candidates, as well. Begich wants all the eventual nominees included in debates he participates in.

—OIL TAX REPEAL: Ballot Measure 1 asks voters whether they want to repeal the oil tax cuts passed by lawmakers in 2013 and revert to the system enacted under Palin in 2007. A "yes" vote favors repeal. According to the Division of Elections, only three referenda have ever appeared on a statewide ballot, two of which passed, one in 2000, one in 1976.

—OTHER RACES: The ballot also features U.S. House and gubernatorial primaries, though no upsets are expected. The attention in both those has largely been focused on the general.

Eleven Candidates file for Assembly, School Board
After a flurry of last-minute filing, when the dust cleared, the following is the list of certified candidates for the three open Assembly positions:

The one Area-wide Assembly position that was open drew 3 candidates: Norton Gregory, Maria Gladziszewski and Tony Yorba. Incumbent Assembly member Carlton Smith is not running for re-election.

For the Assembly District 1 seat, Jessie Kiehl looks to keep his current position without opposition.

For the Assembly District 2 seat, Debbie White, Karla Hart, David Fox, Kory Hunt and Joshua Warren are all running for the seat currently held by Randy Wanamaker, who has decided not to seek another term.

For the two open School Board seats; Sean O'Brien will run un-opposed and Brian Holst was certified as a candidate without any other opposition.

UPDATE: Ex-Marine charged with murder after body found
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) — Prosecutors have charged a former Marine with murder after the body of his alleged lover was found in an abandoned Southern California mine shaft.

The San Bernardino County Superior Court's web site says prosecutors on Tuesday charged 24-year-old Christopher Brandon Lee with murder.

Lee was arrested Sunday in Anchorage, Alaska, in connection with the death of 19-year-old Erin Corwin.

Authorities say Corwin and Lee were having an "intimate relationship" before she disappeared in Southern California in June. Court papers say Corwin was pregnant at the time.

Authorities searched a vast, remote area some 130 miles east of Los Angeles for Corwin for nearly two months and found her body Saturday in an abandoned mine shaft.

Corwin disappeared June 28 from her home in Twentynine Palms, where her Marine husband was stationed.

Port of Anchorage project need $300M to complete
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan estimates the city needs about $300 million in additional funding to complete the Port of Anchorage construction project.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports Sullivan spoke about the troubled project Monday after a week of meetings with shippers, port administrators and employees of CH2M Hill, the company managing the project.

The city has spent more than $300 million over the past decade on a rail line, roads, utilities, drainage systems, acreage and a new dock. Construction stalled in 2009, after initial cost estimates soared from $211 million to $1 billion.

Sullivan says the city expects to have a new plan by November and construction could resume in 2015.

Princess Cruises tour bus in Alaska collision
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A Princess Cruises tour bus was involved in a collision with a truck Monday afternoon on Parks Highway near Cantwell.

KTUU reports the cruise company says the bus was traveling from Mt. McKinley Princess Lodge to Denali when it was rear-ended by a semi-truck with a double tractor trailer.

Alaska State Troopers report the truck driver was flown to a hospital with injuries not considered life-threatening.

Princess spokesman Bruce Bustamente says there were 44 passengers on the bus and 10 were injured, but the injuries do not appear to be life-threatening. They were taken to a hospital.

Troopers say the bus had stopped at an Alaska Railroad crossing, but the truck did not stop.

Magnitude 4 earthquake in Cook Inlet region
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A magnitude 4 earthquake was recorded at 2:11 a.m. Tuesday in the Cook Inlet region of Alaska.

The Alaska Earthquake Information Center in Fairbanks says it was centered near the Iliamna volcano, which is 34 miles southwest of the Redoubt volcano, 137 miles southwest of Anchorage and 60 miles west of Homer.

There are no reports the quake was felt.

Public comment period opens for Denali bridges
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — National Park Service officials say the agency is considering whether to replace two pedestrian bridges at Alaska's Denali National Park and Preserve.

The agency is taking public comments through Sept. 17 for an environmental assessment for the possible project, which would take place next summer at Hotel Creek.

Officials say the Healy Overlook and Taiga Trail bridges were built near the water surface and usually capture water flow on top of winter ice.

Officials say this creates ice dams on the bridges that usually don't melt until mid-June, resulting in unsafe conditions.

According to officials, a new bridge would serve both trails.

[Monday August 18th, 2014  14TH  EDITION 5:02 P. M.]

Man injured in Bethel police shooting identified
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) - The name of the 31-year-old Bethel man wounded in a police-involved shooting has been released.

KYUK says the family of Aaron Moses released his name. Authorities have not confirmed the name.

Alaska State Troopers say the state Bureau of Investigation is investigating the shooting involving a Bethel police officer who reportedly shot the man during an altercation in a residential neighborhood.

According to the radio station, a family member says Moses was stable Monday in the intensive care unit at the Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage.

Troopers say officers encountered a man holding a baseball bat and tried to control him, including using an electronic stun gun. Troopers say a struggle followed and an officer was struck with the bat.

Troopers say an officer shot the man.

Murkowski: Will work to elect Republican senator
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski is questioning how Alaskans have benefited from having a Democratic senator in recent years.

Murkowski told reporters she would work hard after Tuesday's primary to help ensure Republicans win the seat held by Democrat Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election.

She said it's been six years of having a Democrat "supposedly working with" a Democratic administration. She said she didn't see how Alaskans had gained from that.

While she has not publicly said who she is voting for, Murkowski said she had two good friends running, Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and former state attorney general Dan Sullivan.

She didn't mention tea party favorite Joe Miller, who's also running. Miller beat Murkowski in the 2010 GOP primary but she won the general election with a write-in campaign.

Searchers find missing Cook Inlet hunter
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A hunter missing in Cook Inlet for two days has been found.

KTUU-TV reports 41-year-old George Green was picked up by a Coast Guard helicopter Monday morning.

The agency says he is in good condition.

He was found about 1.5 miles inland east of the Little Susitna River.

Green left the Anchorage at noon Saturday in a 10-foot fiberglass skiff. He had planned to boat to Port MacKenzie and return Saturday night.

The Coast Guard, Anchorage firefighters and Alaska State Troopers searched for Green on Sunday without success.

Fermented fish investigated after village death
LOWER KALSKAG, Alaska (AP) — An autopsy has been ordered for a man from a Kuskokwim River village who complained of health problems after eating fermented fish.

Alaska State Troopers say 59-year-old Allen Nook of Lower Kalskag was found dead Friday in his home.

Nook had reported eating fermented fish two days earlier.

He told others in the village he felt sick and was seeing double.

A community member checked on Nook early Friday afternoon and found him unresponsive. Village medical personnel responded and he was pronounced dead 20 minutes later.

Troopers say no foul play is suspected.

Lower Kalskag is a community of 300 about 89 miles northeast of Bethel and 350 miles west of Anchorage.

UPDATE: Body of Marine's missing wife found in mine shaft
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) — The body of the missing, pregnant wife of a U.S. Marine has been found deep in an abandoned mine shaft in Southern California, where her husband had been stationed.

San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon said Monday that the remains of 20-year-old Erin Corwin were found Saturday and were identified by dental records Sunday.

Her alleged lover and former neighbor, 24-year-old Christopher Brandon Lee, was arrested at 9 p.m. Sunday at a traffic stop in Anchorage, Alaska, on an extradition warrant out of California.

Alleged lover of Marine's missing wife arrested
SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. (AP) — The alleged lover of the pregnant missing wife of a U.S. Marine based in Southern California has been arrested in Alaska on a homicide charge.

Jennifer Castro, a spokesman for the Anchorage Police Department, said Monday that 24-year-old Christopher Brandon Lee was arrested at 9 p.m. Sunday at a traffic stop on a warrant out of California.

Castro says San Bernardino County officials have charged Lee with homicide.

Court papers show Lee was the lover of 20-year-old Erin Corwin, who disappeared June 28 after leaving her Twentynine Palms home.

Corwin had planned to meet Lee for a hunting trip. Marine Cpl. Jonathan Corwin reported his wife missing the next day.

An affidavit says the investigation focused on Lee and the unborn child may have been his.

Man accused of setting off 'seal bombs' in tunnel
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A Ketchikan man has pleaded not guilty to allegations he detonated bombs used for scaring seals from fishing nets inside a tunnel in that southeast community last month.

Joseph Duane Brown was indicted on a felony charge of receipt and possession of explosive materials by a prohibited person. The 39-year-old is a convicted felon, prohibited from possessing explosive materials.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jack Schmidt said no one was injured in the July 4 incident, though a taxi was driving through a tunnel at the time the bombs went off. He said there also was no damage to the tunnel.

Schmidt said "seal bombs" are legal to own with the proper license and are roughly the size of a firecracker.

US Senate race the focus in Alaska primary
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The tea party is hoping for primary magic again in Alaska, where they hope fellow conservative voters will help Joe Miller win the Senate race like 2010.

Miller is one of the three major Republicans vying for the seat held by Democratic Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election. The others are Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and former attorney general Dan Sullivan, the presumptive front-runner.

Tuesday's ballot also will feature a referendum on the state's new oil production tax. Voters will narrow fields in races for U.S. House, governor and lieutenant governor.

Republicans see Alaska as key to their efforts to regain control of the U.S. Senate. They need to pick up six seats.

The state GOP has vowed to unite behind the eventual nominee in the cause of defeating Begich.

Astronaut Aldrin endorses Treadwell in Senate race
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Space pioneer Buzz Aldrin has endorsed Mead Treadwell in Alaska's Republican U.S. Senate primary.

While Aldrin is not from Alaska, he said he has known Treadwell for nearly 30 years. In a statement, he praised Treadwell's work as chairman of the Aerospace States Association and efforts to help make Alaska a testing ground for drones.

Aldrin also helped raise money for a project, in memory of Treadwell's late wife, that helped to bring thousands of students to the Alaska Sea Life Center in Seward.

In 1969, Aldrin was one of the first men to walk on the moon.

Treadwell faces two high-profile candidates for the GOP nomination in Tuesday's primary: presumptive front-runner Dan Sullivan and tea party favorite Joe Miller, who also has trotted out celebrity endorsements, including Sarah Palin.

City considers new strategy for Anchorage port
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The municipality of Anchorage is looking at another strategy for revamping the city's port, this time abandoning flawed construction to the north and downsizing the project.

Alaska Dispatch News reports that more than 50 people tied to the beleaguered project are meeting in Anchorage beginning Monday for a weeklong planning session.

Officials expect the session to result in the selection of three possible design plans.

Lindsey Whitt, a spokeswoman for Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan, says engineering firm CH2M Hill will present a prepared design by November. The company has taken over management of the project.

The project first got underway in 2003. Construction on the port halted in 2009 when inspections revealed some steel sheets for a dock had bent, jammed and separated, threatening structure's integrity.

Landing gear fails on experimental aircraft
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A 56-year-old Wasilla pilot crash landed over the weekend near Healy when the landing gear failed on his experimental aircraft.

Alaska State Troopers say Randy Tyler was not hurt in the crash.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Tyler on Saturday morning attempted to land at an airstrip at St. George Creek east of Healy.

The Federal Aviation Administration notified troopers of the crash just before noon.

The aircraft was damaged so badly it could not be flown.

A trooper helicopter flew to the site and gave Tyler a ride to Fairbanks.

Troopers say he is making arrangements to recover the damaged aircraft.

CG assists boaters near Ketchikan
JUNEAU, Alaska – A Coast Guard boatcrew from Station Ketchikan assisted two boaters after their 15-foot vessel became disabled near Ketchikan, Sunday.

The boatcrew safely transferred the boaters to the Coast Guard vessel and took the disabled vessel in tow before transporting them to Knuduson Cove.

Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Juneau were notified by the Ketchikan Police Department after they received a call from one of the boaters that their vessel had been swamped by waves and became disabled. Station Ketchikan immediately launched a Response Boat – Small crew to assist.

“The boaters went out without a radio or GPS, but were fortunate enough to make an emergency call to the Ketchikan Police Department with a weak cell phone signal,” said Lt. j.g. Eric Ferree, Sector Juneau command center watchstander. “We can’t stress enough the importance of taking a VHF marine radio when underway, especially since cell phones don't work everywhere in Alaska.”

Weather on scene was reported as 17 mph winds and 3-foot seas.

Sterling woman enters plea in parking lot shooting
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — A 28-year-old Sterling woman who fired shots at a car in a Kenai parking lot has pleaded guilty to a felony charge of weapons misconduct.

The Peninsula Clarion reports Ashley Nelund changed her plea last week in Kenai Superior Court and will be sentenced Nov. 25.

She also entered a guilty plea to a felony drug charge not connected to the shooting.

Two counts of felony assault were reduced to misdemeanors as part of the plea deal.

Kenai police say Nelund on Nov. 1 approached a 17-year-old boy and another person driving a car outside the Kenai Walmart and said she was owed money.

Police say the driver took off and Nelund opened fire.

Nelund told police she fired three shots at the car's bumper to scare the occupants.

Flood Advisory cancelled

The National Weather Service says the urban and small stream flood advisory has been cancelled.

Bus crashes as driver loses consciousness, dies
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — A seafood company bus driver died as he drove employees Sunday morning and seven on board were injured when the bus went off the road.

The Peninsula Clarion reports 59-year-old Steven Battershall of Sterling died at the scene.

Twenty people were on board the Snug Harbor Seafoods bus. Troopers say injuries to the seven passengers were not life-threatening.

Battershall lost consciousness and the bus left the roadway after 7:30 a.m. at Mile 90 Sterling Highway.

The bus continued about a quarter mile over a gravel pile near Fellman Machinery, reached a wooded area and hit a tree.

Brad Nelson of Kenai Peninsula Central Emergency Services says the employees were not familiar with the area and it took dispatchers a while to determine the crash location.

[Sunday August 17th, 2014  7th  EDITION 6:07 P. M.]

Flood advisory
The National Weather Service says the urban and small stream flood advisory remains in effect until 6:00 PM Monday for the Taiya River near Skagway and Montana and Jordan Creeks near Juneau.

As of 5:15 PM rainfall rates over the affected area have diminished significantly and are expected to remain light before stopping altogether Monday night.

At 5:00 PM the Taiya River was at 16.8 feet and still rising. The river is expected to crest around 16.9 feet later tonight. Flood stage for the Taiya is 16.5 feet.

Jordan Creek has risen steadily through the day, reaching 9.1 feet but still below bankfull by this afternoon. The creek is expected to remain below a flood stage of 9.7 feet and cresting near 9.3 feet later this evening.

Montana Creek rose very sharply through the late morning and into the afternoon, reaching a stage of 14.7 feet by 5:00 PM.  Water 4 to 6 inches deep has been flowing over the low water crossing on Montana Creek Road for several hours.  The creek is beginning to show signs of cresting and will fall rapidly overnight tonight.

Rain will cause considerable ponding of water in low lying areas, near culverts, and along small creeks and drainages.

If you live near or along the Taiya River near Skagway or Montana Creek in Juneau stay alert and be prepared to take action.

Mudslides remain possible in areas of steep terrain.

Remain cautious when in low-lying areas and report any minor flooding to your law enforcement agency. They will relay your report to the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Juneau.

(Muddy water from Gold Creek fills channel Sunday)

Juneau police: death on cruise ship not suspicious
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Juneau Police say an 87-year-old Missouri woman, Corrine Underwood, died of natural causes on a cruise ship in Juneau last week.

Police investigated the death after the woman's body was found on the Holland America Oosterdam while the ship was in port.

Police were required to investigate since the death was not attended.

Don Young introduces fianc? at church event
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Rep. Don Young is engaged.

The 81-year-old introduced Anne Garland Walton as his fianc?, to applause, during "Candidate Sunday" at an Anchorage mega-church on Sunday.

Young spokesman Matt Shuckerow said the congressman attends the church, Anchorage Baptist Temple, when he is in town.

Walton, a flight nurse from Fairbanks, said later that no date had been set. She said the engagement has been unofficial for some time.

Shuckerow said Walton is in her 70s.

Young is a widower; his wife, Lu, died in 2009.

Young is currently the longest serving Republican in the U.S. House. He is seeking his 22nd term.

Miller expresses confidence ahead of primary
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Joe Miller is expressing confidence in winning Tuesday's primary.

In a recent debate, the tea party favorite said if he did not win, he would support either of his main GOP rivals, Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell or former state Attorney General Dan Sullivan. This came after Miller, for months, declined to commit to pledging such support.

Miller's campaign has cast Sullivan and Treadwell as establishment candidates, while touting Miller as a "constitutional conservative" who will stand up against the status quo.

When asked how he could back an "establishment" candidate, Miller said he believes he's going to win. If he doesn't, he said he'll continue to fight the establishment.

Asked how he reconciles his positions, his wife started to pull him away, calling the questioning argumentative.

Parnell: Repeal effort will affect state's future
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell said he's more concerned about Alaska's future than his own political fate if the oil tax referendum passes on Tuesday.

Parnell championed the tax structure the referendum seeks to replace as a way to encourage investment and boost production. Critics say the tax cuts Parnell backed amount to a giveaway to Big Oil.

Neither Parnell nor the major Democratic candidate, Byron Mallott, is expected to have any real problem winning their respective primaries. The general election ballot also will feature Bill Walker, who finished behind Parnell in the 2010 GOP gubernatorial primary but is running this time as an independent.

Both Walker and Mallott support the referendum.

Parnell said if the referendum succeeds, it will be a moment of great uncertainty and risk for the state.

Fort Wainwright on list for potential downsizing
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The U.S. Army has proposed cutting about 5,800 soldiers and civilian positions from Fort Wainwright as one of many options it is exploring for possible force reductions.

The Daily News-Miner says final decisions haven't been made on where the reductions will be, but such a cut would reduce the workforce at Fort Wainwright to 1,600. It could also potentially hurt the Fairbanks economy, where about 23 percent of the population is military or dependent on the military.

The Army is taking public comment through Aug. 25 on the impacts of possible force reductions over the 2015-2020 timeframe.

Civic leaders in Fairbanks are encouraging residents to write the Army about the proposal and to show up in large numbers at an Army listening session to be held sometime this winter.

New rule on initiatives being tested this election
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The Fairbanks Borough Assembly passed a rule last year making it easier for voters to understand ballot initiatives by inviting both sides of an issue to file statements explaining their positions.

But the law also says a statement from one side can't run without a statement from the other side.

So far, elections officials haven't gotten statements from both sides in two initiatives on this fall's ballot.

The Daily News-Miner reports that the borough clerk's office hasn't received a statement in support of a home heating initiative that bans the borough from regulating air quality. It also hasn't gotten an opposing statement for another initiative that would limit property taxes.

That's prompted some to ask for changes in the law.

Coast Guard, agency partners searching for overdue boater near Anchorage, Alaska
JUNEAU, Alaska — Coast Guard, Alaska State Troopers and Anchorage Fire Department personnel are searching for an overdue 41-year-old boater in the Knik Arm near Anchorage, Alaska, Sunday morning.

The search includes a Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew, Anchorage Fire Department boat crews and Alaska State Troopers searching from shore near Point Mackenzie.

George Green was reported overdue after he did not return from a hunting trip on time Saturday night.
Green departed from the boat ramp in the Port of Anchorage bound for Point Mackenzie on Saturday at noon in a 10-foot, beige fiberglass skiff.

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of Green should contact the Coast Guard Sector Anchorage command center at 907-428-4100.

Killer whale throws sea lion 20 feet into the air in Ketchikan
While aboard the fishing vessel Sierra Dawn, Anglers Adventures of Ketchikan filmed a sea lion being tossed twenty feet into the air by a killer whale Friday morning.

In Alaska, a distinct feel to getting out the vote
EAGLE RIVER, Alaska (AP) — The underdogs in Alaska's GOP Senate primary Tuesday are hoping personal connections make the difference against a well-financed front-runner.

Neither Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell nor tea party favorite Joe Miller has raised the money that former state Attorney General Dan Sullivan has. They can't match the size of Sullivan's campaign staff.

Also, Sullivan has been running ads for months and has his own network of local volunteers.

Treadwell is counting on his decades-long ties to the state and promises of support to prevail.

Miller, who fell short in a 2010 Senate race, has retained a loyal following of backers. They're a constant presence on streets corners and wave signs.

The primary winner is expected to face the incumbent, Democratic Sen. Mark Begich.

No drama expected in Alaska US House primaries
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — No drama is expected in the GOP U.S. House primary, with Rep. Don Young expected to advance over little-known challengers in pursuit of a 22nd term.

On the Democratic side, Ivy League-educated upstart Forrest Dunbar is the favorite, having won the state party's endorsement. He faces perennial candidate Frank Vondersaar.

Young has served in Congress for longer than the 29-year-old Dunbar has been alive and is currently the longest-serving Republican in the House. Though Young has made news recently for gaffes and being rebuked for violating House ethics rules, he insists he's the best man for the job.

Dunbar argues Young is no longer effective.

Dunbar has been crisscrossing the state, running an attention-getting, cheeky campaign using the tagline "Run, Forrest, Run" in a nod to the movie "Forrest Gump."

Researchers study Kuskokwim River smelt
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Researchers are looking at Kuskokwim River smelt this summer as part of a mine environmental impact statement study.

Larry Moulton with Owl Ridge Natural Resources Consultants and a team followed the small fish up the river by helicopter and spotted a large school of smelt just above Kalskag one evening.

The fish were gone the next morning when the team returned. Moulton says the fish had apparently spawned.

KYUK reports researchers collected samples of clumps of eggs from the gravel and sand at the bottom of the river.

Moulton says the fast exit of the smelt after spawning contrasts with other studies. For example, smelt spent a couple weeks in the river around Togiak before moving out.

The research is part of a Donlin Mine environmental study.

August 16th, 2014  5TH  EDITION 6:08 P. M.]

Duck Derby 2014 huge success
It was quite a scene at Twin Lakes Park Saturday afternoon. There were over six thousand rubber ducks dropped from a helicopter; six young ladies from the Glacier Swim Club braved the frigid water as they dove from a One People Canoe Society canoe to swim to a corral that housed the ducks in order to randomly pluck the lucky ducks.

The winners were:

6th place $500 - Rich Berg and Jennifer Nebert
5th place $1000 - Don Meyer
4th place $1500 - Sion Colmus
3rd place $2000 - Kathy Smikrud
2nd place $2500 Deborah Morse

1st place $2500 and 2 airline tickets- Kercia Schroeder

The Glacier Valley Rotary Club sold all 6250 ducks available this year.

Club President Charity MacKinnon thanked all of Juneau for their support.

Authorities try to identify remains near Seward
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers are trying to identify human remains discovered by a sheep hunter near Seward.

Authorities say the hunter was hiking near the Tonsina Creek Trail when he found a partial jawbone at the top of a mountain.

Troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen tells KTUU that there are eight people listed as missing in the Seward and Crown Point area since 1993. Three are women and five are men.

The state medical examiner's office is trying to identify the person and the cause of death.

The remains were discovered on Monday.

Eielson housing provider rejects borough tax deal
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A private company that recently took over management of housing on Eielson Air Force Base has rejected a deal that would have reduced its property tax bill.

The Fairbanks North Star Borough had offered a substantial discount off the $1.8 million property tax bill. But Corvias Military Living says the proposed $580,000 payment in lieu of taxes would negatively affect service members and their families.

Borough Mayor Luke Hopkins tells the Daily News-Miner that he believes the deal is fair. The borough has had a similar deal with privatized housing on Fort Wainwright since 2009.

Corvias spokesman Mark Nettles says the company is looking for a solution with the Air Force and others.

Bikes stolen from couple on transcontinental ride
MOUNT VERNON, Wash. (AP) — Police say a couple riding from Alaska to South America had their bicycles stolen in Washington state.

Mount Vernon police say they're asking the public to help them find the bikes, described as a black Trek hybrid with blue trim and a black Apollo Trace 2.0 hybrid. The Trek had two black bags on the back tire with a yellow bag above, as well as gray bags on the front tire. The other bike had two black bags on the back tire and two red bags on the front tire.

Police say the bags had the couple's clothing, sleeping bags, tents and other travel items.

The bikes were taken when the couple stopped to have dinner in downtown Mount Vernon.

Voters to decide fate of Alaska oil production tax
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaskans head to the polls Tuesday to decide if their old system for taxing oil companies is better than the new one.

Ballot Measure No. 1 asks voters if they want to reject the 2013 law that its supporters have dubbed the "More Alaska Production Act."

It replaced the production tax championed by former Gov. Sarah Palin, known as "Alaska's Clear and Equitable Share," or ACES.

Critics say ACES was an investment killer. It gave tax credits for investment but contained a progressive surcharge that companies say ate too deeply into profits, discouraging new investment.

Referendum advocates contend Gov. Sean Parnell could have fine-tuned ACES but instead pushed the new law, which gives huge tax breaks to profitable petroleum companies at the expense of revenue that belongs to the people of Alaska.

[Friday August 15th, 2014  13th  EDITION 6:50 P. M.]

Juneau Radio Center helps stuff the bus
The Juneau Radio Center is helping to host the "Stuff The Bus - K Through 8 - School Supply Drive" at Fred Meyer on Saturday.

We will be in the parking lot with the First Student Bus from 11 to 5. Bring new clothes, gym shoes, boots, backpacks, coats, and school supplies to be distributed throughout the school district and to children in need. Check our Facebook page for more items requested. There will be collection boxes inside the store for donations too.

The TMHS Falcons Basketball Team with be there with the Juneau Radio Center to help collect back to school items to help stuff the bus, Saturday at Fred Meyer.

JPD Crime of the Week: stolen outboard
Juneau Police Department's Lieutenant David Campbell says a mid 1990’s Yamaha 9.9 horsepower outboard motor valued at $800 was stolen from a boat on Friday August 8. The boat had been parked at a residence on Back Loop Road near Auke Lake.

Anyone with information is encouraged to log on to the Juneau Crime Line Web site and report their tip.

Man indicted by federal grand jury for explosive materials
Anchorage, Alaska - U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced Friday that Joseph Duane Brown, 39, of Juneau, was indicted by a federal grand jury in Anchorage for receipt and possession of explosive materials by a prohibited person.

Brown was charged in a one-count indictment that on or about July 4, 2013, while having been previously convicted of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year, did knowingly receive and possess, explosive materials, specifically perchlorate explosive mixture and cap sensitive ammonium nitrate explosive mixture.

Trial is currently scheduled for October 7, 2014.

Brown faces a maximum sentence of ten years of imprisonment, $250,000 fine, and up to 3 years of supervised release for receipt and possession of explosive materials by a prohibited person.

Palin endorses Miller in Senate race
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has endorsed Joe Miller in this state's GOP U.S. Senate primary.

Palin, in a Facebook post, said Miller has the "guts, wisdom, experience, and optimism to fight for what is right — and win."

Palin endorsed Miller, a tea party favorite, during his unsuccessful Senate bid in 2010. He upset Sen. Lisa Murkowski in the GOP primary that year but Murkowski waged an historic write-in campaign to keep her job.

This latest endorsement comes days before Tuesday's contested primary, which also features Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and Dan Sullivan, whom Palin appointed as her attorney general in 2009 shortly before resigning as governor.

During a debate aired Thursday night, in which the candidates were asked what Alaskans, past or present, inspired them, Miller said Palin.

Troopers probe Bethel officer-involved shooting
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Alaska state authorities have launched an investigation of a shooting involving a Bethel police officer who reportedly a shot 31-year-old man in the abdomen during an altercation.

Alaska State Troopers say the incident reported Friday is being investigated by the state Bureau of Investigation.

KYUK reports the man was stabilized, then transported to Anchorage for further treatment. One officer was treated for injuries.

The radio station says police responded to an ongoing disturbance Friday morning in a residential neighborhood.

Troopers say officers encountered a man holding a baseball bat and tried to control him, including using an electronic stun gun. Troopers say a struggle followed and an officer was struck with the bat.

Troopers say an officer drew his firearm and shot the man.

No names were immediately released. Bethel Police Chief Andre Achee did not immediately return a call Friday afternoon from The Associated Press seeking comment.

Coast Guard Auxiliary rescues mariners near Homer, Alaska
JUNEAU, Alaska — A Coast Guard Auxiliarist and Coast Guard Cutter Roanoke Island crewmembers rescued mariners aboard a disabled vessel 20 miles southwest of Homer Friday morning.

The Auxiliarist and two Roanoke Island crewmembers took the disabled vessel in tow with the Auxiliary vessel Quanah P and safely returned to Homer.

Coast Guard Sector Anchorage watchstanders received the report of a disabled 23-foot pleasure craft with two people aboard late Thursday night. The watchstanders issued a marine assistance request broadcast, and contacted the Homer Auxiliary after no one responded.

The rescue crew located and rendezvoused with the disabled vessel and towed them safely back to Homer, arriving in the early morning.

"The Coast Guard Auxiliary is a vital part of our ability to assist mariners in Alaska," said Lt. j. g. Laura Gadziala, a command duty officer at Sector Anchorage. "Our partnership and joint training with the Auxiliary makes us ready to respond during cases."

Weather on scene was reported as 15 mph winds and 2-foot seas.

New UAA arena not just a sports venue
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Officials at the University of Alaska Anchorage are getting ready to show off their new arena.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports the $110 million, 192,000-square-foot Alaska Airlines Center will officially open next month with a volleyball tournament. But it will also host its first concern when the Southern rock band Alabama Shakes performs Sept. 13.

The arena is most often talked about as a 5,000-seat sports venue. The Great Alaska Shootout will be played there this year instead of Sullivan Arena, and basketball and volleyball teams will call the arena home.

But there also will be 10 to 12 non-sports events, like concerts and speakers. Even the old notion of stadium food will be taken up a notch with a restaurant serving wine, beer and food like artisan pizzas.

Fairbanks airport warns people of screening delays
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Fairbanks International Airport officials are urging travelers on departing flights to arrive earlier than usual because of expected screening delays.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports there is a problem with one of the scanners used by Transportation Safety Administration agents to examine passengers' carry-on bags.

Airport spokeswoman Angie Spear says security lines at the airport are longer than normal because the scanner broke Wednesday evening. Flights affected are with Alaska, United, Delta and Frontier airlines.

Spear says the airport issued an alert because many people are comfortable arriving only an hour or an hour and a half before their flights from Fairbanks.

Spear says TSA personnel have ordered the necessary parts to fix the equipment. She says the airport hopes repairs will be made by Monday at the latest.

Cleanup underway at Cold War radio site in Alaska
PETERSBURG, Alaska (AP) — A federal contractor is removing soil contaminated by fuel and debris at a Cold War mountaintop radio site near Petersburg.

The Kupreanof Island site was a manned U.S. Air Force communications station, one of 18 built in Alaska in the 1950s, and part of an early warning system to relay radio communications to Colorado Springs during the Cold War.

While the Air Force removed over 100 fuel barrels from the site in 2000, fuel drums and other debris remain. KFSK reports the contractor has documented fuel, chemicals and heavy metals in the soil and groundwater.

Air Force project manager Lori Roy said clean soil will refill the excavated sites. The hope is to complete the work by September.

Project costs have been estimated at $3.5 million.

2 Democrats vie for lieutenant governor election
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Two Democrats seeking to be Alaska's next lieutenant governor are competing in Tuesday's primary for the chance to face presumed Republican winner, Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan, in the November general election.

The Democratic candidates are state Senate Minority Leader Hollis French of Anchorage and Palmer math teacher Bob Williams. Sullivan faces token competition.

Alaska's current lieutenant governor, Republican Mead Treadwell, is seeking his party's nomination for the U.S. Senate seat held by Democrat Mark Begich.

Independent lieutenant governor candidate Craig Fleener is running in the general with independent gubernatorial candidate Bill Walker.

French, who lost the Democratic gubernatorial nomination in 2010, decided this time to support Byron Mallott for governor and instead run for lieutenant governor.

In Alaska, the party candidates for governor and lieutenant governor run as a ticket.

Alaska gubernatorial races low-key for primary
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Leading into Tuesday's primary, Alaska's gubernatorial campaigns have been largely overshadowed by hard-driving runs for a U.S. Senate seat and a ballot referendum to repeal the current version of the state's oil tax.

Expect the race for governor to fire up for the November general election.

Republican incumbent Gov. Sean Parnell and Democratic challenger Byron Mallott only have token rivals in the primary and thus far have waged low-key campaigns. Each is expected to breeze through the primary, setting up a three-way race when independent candidate Bill Walker joins them on the November ballot.

Political observers say Parnell holds an edge, not just as the incumbent, but because any anti-Parnell vote will be fractured between his competitors.

Mallott's campaign and Walker disagree, saying their campaigns are picking up momentum.

RNC busy in Alaska
With the balance of power of the U S Senate possibly at stake, the Republican National Committee has been busy in Alaska.

Kyle Kohli, RNC Alaska Communications Director in a statement said, “Recognizing the importance of replacing Obama rubber stamp Mark Begich this November, the RNC has made an unprecedented effort in Alaska, putting resources in the state earlier than ever before.

The RNC has been on the ground since last summer with offices and we now have 11 staffers with plans to expand to identify voters and recruit hundreds of precinct captains for our new data-driven, locally-powered get out the vote operation.”

The primary election is Tuesday August 19. The GOP will choose a candidate to battle incumbent Democratic Senator Mark Begich in the general election in November.

Fistfight escalates into beating; bystander shot
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Anchorage teenager was beaten and a bystander shot as two dozen people gathered Wednesday night to watch a fistfight.

KTUU-TV reports police afterward arrested three people in a parking lot on Old Seward Highway.

Police say two young men had an ongoing dispute and planned to fight outside a Sports Authority store.

One participant ended up being beaten by three young men. Someone in the crowd fired shots in the air, leading to gunfire by others.

Police say a 16-year-old girl was hit by a bullet and suffered a non-life-threatening injury. She and the injured boy were taken to a hospital.

A 17-year-old boy was charged with assault.

Two adults with outstanding warrants also were arrested and a 22-year-old man was cited for driving with a suspended license.

Parnell signs resolution opposing Beringia park
NOME, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell has signed a state Senate resolution urging the federal government to stop development of Beringia International Park.

KNOM-radio reports the resolution was sponsored by state Sen. Cathy Giessel (GEE'-sel), an Anchorage Republican.

She says the park is a United Nations designation that could affect the use of Alaska natural resources.

National Park Service spokesman John Quinley says work on the Beringia Shared Heritage Program already is halted. He says the United States suspended almost all bilateral engagements with Russia because of the Ukraine situation.

The Park Service in February issued a letter noting what it said were factual errors in Geisel's resolution.

The agency disputes that the state and Congress did not have the opportunity to comment on the memorandum of understanding.

Miller says he'll back Alaska GOP Senate nominee
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Joe Miller says he will support the eventual GOP nominee if he doesn't win Tuesday's primary.

For months, Miller, a tea party favorite, said he would not commit to supporting either Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell or Dan Sullivan, stoking fears that the party would be divided in a race Republicans see as key to their efforts to win back control of the Senate.

But near the end of a televised debate Thursday night, Miller said he would support Treadwell or Sullivan, if he himself is not successful. He said he would do everything he can to see that incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Begich is defeated.

Both Treadwell and Sullivan have said they would support the eventual nominee, should they lose.

Seattle cat who fled as owners moved gets plane ride, reunion
SEATTLE - A Seattle cat that ran off as his family prepared to move has been reunited with his people — thanks to a neighbor, a shelter and an airline employee who volunteered to transport him by air.

Alaska Airlines spokeswoman Bobbie Egan says Itty Bitty Kitty fled as his owners prepared to move to Ohio. Owner Beth Lewis postponed her trip for two weeks but finally had to leave.

By the time a neighbor found the orange and white tabby and took him to a shelter called Kitty Harbor, the 14-pound feline weighed only 5 pounds, had a throat gash and was missing teeth. Lewis was thrilled, but couldn't drive or fly back to Seattle. And Kitty couldn't fly as cargo, due to his health.

The shelter says 10 people who read about the cat's plight on Facebook volunteered to help. Alaska Airlines employee Robin Yong was able to do it quickly. Earlier this month, she took a red-eye flight to Chicago, then drove 2 1/2 hours to Lafayette, Indiana. Beth Lewis drove two hours from Dayton, Ohio, for the transfer.

Lewis says her pet is doing well — and she adds, "I don't even let him see the door!"

[Thursday August 14th, 2014  14th  EDITION 5:01 P.M.]

Juneau fugitive arrested, missing child safe in California
A child reported missing from Juneau in 2013 has been found in California.

Under Operation Pickup, the U.S. Marshals Service in Alaska assisted the Alaska State Troopers and the Juneau Police Department in locating fugitive Jessica Rodriguez (also known as Jessica Barranco.)

Rodriguez/Barranco was arrested Wednesday in Riverside County, California. She fled Juneau in July of 2013 with a child.

The missing child was safely recovered and placed into the custody of Child Protective Services in California until being reunited with the father.

A warrant had been issued in Juneau in June of 2014 for Rodriguez/Barranco concerning Custodial Interference.

Seattle man dies while diving off dredge near Nome
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A 39-year-old Seattle man has died while diving off a gold dredge outside Nome.

KNOM reports the body of Sean Beals was found late Wednesday evening.

Alaska State Troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters says another crew member on the Argo noticed Beals floating in the water about four miles east of Nome and a quarter-mile offshore.

The tender's crew member pulled Beals on deck, where lifesaving measures were attempted. Responders took him to Norton Sound Regional Hospital in Nome, where he was declared dead.

Peters says foul play isn't suspected, and the cause of death has not yet been confirmed. The body was flown 525 miles southeast to Anchorage, where the State Medical Examiner was to conduct an autopsy.

Swarm of bees invade North Pole Grange Hall
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The buzz around North Pole isn't a happy sound.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports a swarm of honeybees have been found living above the front door at the Grange Hall. The bees are prompting officials to cancel events there this weekend while they figure out what to do, including an art show, a jam and jellies contest and a dance. But a giant cabbage weigh-in will go on as scheduled outside.

Grange President John Poirrier says his grandson is allergic to bees, and one tried to attack him this week while mowing.

There are about a hundred bees in the swarm, and commercial spray hasn't deterred them. A consultant tells the Grange that they would likely have to cut into the roof to remove the hive.

Troopers search for escapee in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers are warning people in the Fairbanks area about a potentially dangerous escapee.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports 27-year-old Adam Richard Bloom escaped from a van as he was being transferred from one facility to another Thursday.

Troopers say he fled the van when it was stopped to let another passenger out in the Dale Road area.

They say no one should approach Bloom, but call troopers at 907-451-5100 if anyone sees him.

Bloom is in state custody, accused of stealing a $40,000 fiber optics trailer.

Hikers rescued amid 'Into the Wild' bus pilgrimage
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Authorities rescued three hikers making a pilgrimage to an abandoned bus in the Alaska wilderness made famous by the book and film "Into the Wild."

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Thursday that two hikers from Wisconsin and a third with no listed address needed assistance last week after one tripped while holding an ax and suffered minor injuries.

Authorities often are called to help hikers heading to the dilapidated bus on the Stampede Trail near Denali National Park.

The book and movie "Into the Wild" chronicled the life and death of Chris McCandless, who hiked into the Alaska wilderness in April 1992 with little food and equipment and spent the summer living in the bus. McCandless was found dead in the bus almost four months later after starving to death.

Residents press officials on alleged brutality
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Bethel residents are calling for action from city officials over allegations of police brutality against Alaska Natives.

KYUK reports locals gave emotional testimony at the Bethel City Council meeting Tuesday. Among those speaking was Agnes Gregory, the sister of a man whom a witness said was violently arrested by a police officer.

Gregory told the council that people treat their animals better than the treatment her brother received.

According to court documents and a police report, Wassillie Gregory was arrested July 12 by officer Andrew Reid. The witness says the officer used excessive force.

Officials say the incident is being investigated.

City Attorney Patty Burley declined to comment Thursday.

Ferry worker union rejects tentative contract
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A union representing the licensed captains and officers who work on the state ferry system has rejected a tentative contract agreement.

The International Organization of Masters, Mates and Pilots voted down the proposal by mail-in ballot. Union representative Ron Bressette said he's been with the union since 1992 and has never seen a tentative agreement rejected.

Bressette declined to discuss the final tally. The union represents about 100 workers.

Bressette says many members felt the negotiated wage increases were inadequate. They included no raise the first year, a 1-percent raise in 2015 and a 2-percent raise in 2016.

Next-step options include negotiating a new agreement and arbitration. Bressette said the union hasn't ruled out a strike.

Two other unions also have tentative agreements in place, pending ratification.

Man suffers leg wound in shooting at apartment
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A man suffered a leg wound in a late-night shooting at an Anchorage apartment.

Police responded to the gunshot and injury just after 10:30 p.m. Wednesday in apartments on Eureka Street in midtown Anchorage.

A witness tells KTUU-TV that a man and woman were in the apartment.

Police say the injured man was taken to a hospital.

Chenega sailings cancelled
Due to mechanical issues with the vessel's fast rescue boat, all FVF Chenega sailings scheduled for Thursday, August 14 are cancelled. Further information will be provided as necessary.

For schedule information, please visit or contact your local terminal by dialing 1-907-465-3941 or toll-free at 1-800-642-0066.

Armed man robs east Anchorage bank
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The FBI says a man brandished a gun and robbed a bank Wednesday in east Anchorage.

The agency says the man at 10:31 a.m. entered the First National Bank on east Northern Lights Boulevard near Boniface Parkway, displayed a gun to a teller and presented a note, which demanded money.

The man fled on foot through the Value Village parking lot.

The FBI describes the man as 5-feet-4-inches to 5-feet-7 inches tall.

He wore a shoulder-length dark wig. He had facial "hair" that the FBI says may have been dirt or cosmetics.

He wore a blue-gray baseball cap with "Portland" on the front and wore multiple layers of clothing. His apparel included a black jacket with a hood, black tennis shoes with white soles and sides.

Family finds wooly mammoth tusks 22 years apart
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A western Alaska man has discovered a wooly mammoth tusk 22 years after his mother found one in the same location.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports Andrew Harrelson, who grew up in White Mountain, found the tusk in a bend of the nearby Fish River.

White Mountain is a village of 200 about 63 miles east of Nome.

Tusks of the extinct wooly mammoth are 12,000 to 400,000 years old.

Harrelson says he has a dim memory of his mother's discovery when he was 3 years old.

Harrelson now works in Nome but was in White Mountain over the weekend. After fishing for salmon, he decided to look for fossils.

He says he spotted the base of the mammoth tusk under a stump.

2 Alaska GOP US Senate candidates debate
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The two more conservative Republicans running for U.S. Senate in Alaska sought to distinguish themselves in a rare, head-to-head debate less than a week before the primary.

Joe Miller and Mead Treadwell found common ground on several issues, including on U.S. military intervention and climate change. Both said the science is inconclusive, though Treadwell said that concerns like ocean acidification cannot be ignored.

The third major candidate in the race, presumptive front-runner Dan Sullivan, did not participate.

He was represented in the Anchorage studio of the Alaska public media debate by an empty chair. His spokesman, Mike Anderson, said earlier in the day that Sullivan planned to spend the evening knocking on doors in the Anchorage and Eagle River areas.

Treadwell made a few references to Sullivan's absence.

Light quake registered in Cook Inlet, Alaska, area
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska Earthquake Center says a light earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 4.4 struck the state's Cook Inlet region late Wednesday night. The center says it has no reports of damage.

The quake recorded at 10:04 p.m. Alaska time was centered about 200 miles southwest of Anchorage at a depth of about 82 miles.

The center says the magnitude may change slightly as additional data are processed.

The tsunami warning center in Palmer, Alaska, says there is no tsunami danger.

IBEW backs repeal of oil tax system
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A union representing about 5,000 members has come out in support of repealing the state's current oil tax system.

KTVA reports the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1547 says the oil tax put into place by the Legislature should be repealed because it doesn't guarantee anything for the state.

Voters in Tuesday's election will decide whether to repeal SB21, which lowered taxes on the oil industry. The intent of the bill championed by Gov. Sean Parnell was to encourage oil companies to invest more into new exploration and production.

Critics have argued it's nothing more than a giveaway to Big Oil, and note there's nothing in the bill that makes the oil companies re-invest any savings from lower taxes in Alaska.

Alaska ice park hosts sand sculpture exhibition
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The organizer of a major Alaska ice sculpture competition is hosting an arctic sand sculpture exhibition in collaboration with artists from China.

The exhibition at Fairbanks-based Ice Alaska began this month and continues in September. Exhibition representatives say financial support comes from the Chinese Fuming Lighting Co. from the Chinese city of Harbin.

Nearly 20 predominantly Chinese artists are participating.

More than 230 dump-truck loads of sand were harvested from the same ponds that generate the ice used for sculptures each winter.

The current exhibition features more than 40 large sand sculptures, a sandbox play area for children and a beach-like setting in Alaska's interior.

Begich to attend Social Security event
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Mark Begich is celebrating the anniversary of Social Security with a member of the 1970s TV variety show Sha Na Na.

Begich is scheduled to appear at an event in Anchorage on Thursday with Jon "Bowzer" Bauman. The two will be marking the 79th anniversary of Social Security.

Begich also will be receiving an award from Social Security Works, a group focused on shoring up Social Security.

[Wednesday August 13th, 2014  15TH  EDITION 6:34 P.M.]

Waters recede, Forest Service reopens most rec areas in Juneau
Flood waters are receding and the Forest Service has reopened all the recreations areas and facilities adjacent to Mendenhall Lake except for Nugget Falls Trail.

The National Weather Service water level gauge at Mendenhall Lake can be monitored here.

Treadwell, Miller to debate without Sullivan
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — With the primary election less than a week away, two of the prominent Republican U.S. Senate candidates will appear in a statewide debate Wednesday night.

The third, the presumptive front-runner Dan Sullivan, plans to be knocking on doors in the Anchorage and Eagle River areas.

Sullivan spokesman Mike Anderson says Sullivan has participated in a dozen debates and forums, the most recent on Monday. Anderson said by email that Sullivan recognizes the importance of reaching out to Alaskans in person.

Republicans Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller are scheduled to participate in the debate, one of the last before Tuesday's primary.

Former Iditarod champ cuts video backing Treadwell
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Mead Treadwell has gotten the endorsement of an Iditarod racing legend.

In a video released by the campaign, full of images of tumbling, playing puppies, Martin Buser says he knows how to pick a good lead dog.

Treadwell is one of the three major GOP candidates vying for that party's nomination for the seat held by Democrat Mark Begich, who's seeking re-election.

Republican rival Dan Sullivan has had prominent individuals appear in ads on his behalf, including former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Joe Miller is also running.

Treadwell, in his pre-primary financial disclosure, reported bringing in about $92,000 from July 1-30, including a roughly $8,000 loan. He ended the period with about $140,000 available and $260,000 in debts, mostly from money he lent the campaign.

Woman survives Alaska bear mauling
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a 57-year-old woman drove herself to a hospital after she was mauled by a brown bear.

Troopers were notified Tuesday afternoon that Thea Thomas of Cordova was attacked by the bear while hiking on Heney Ridge Trail in the Cordova area.

Salmon were actively spawning in a nearby stream as Thomas hiked with two dogs. The dogs ran off, then returned shortly with the bear running after them.

Troopers say the bear noticed Thomas and attacked her multiple times. The dogs took off again.

After the attack, Thomas walked 1 ? miles back to her truck. She found one of the dogs while walking back and the other dog was waiting at her vehicle.

Troopers say the trail is now closed for a week.

CBJ to flush water system
Beginning Monday, August 18, 2014, the CBJ Water Utility will begin flushing the water distribution system.

Work is scheduled to begin downtown, heading north to the hospital, crossing over to Douglas, then on to the Lemon Creek area, proceeding to the Valley, and then on out to the Tee Harbor area. Work will occur between 8:00 AM and 4:30 PM, Monday through Friday, and will be completed by approximately September 30th.

Customers may encounter water discoloration or minor disruptions in service. To clear the
discoloration, first wait until the work crew leaves the area, then run the cold water tap (preferably in your bathtub) until the water runs clear.

Watch for crews working in the roadway.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

For more information, contact CBJ Water Utility Office at 780-6888; for after-hours emergencies, call 586-2165.

Gunshot heard during domestic disturbance in Switzer Village
A report of a gunshot during a domestic disturbance brought Juneau Police to Switzer Village Trailer Park, Tuesday night around 6:15.

Juneau police say 36 year old Samuel StClair of Juneau was having an argument with one of the residents over someone spending the night. StClair made statements of a suicidal nature and armed himself with a rifle. He fired one shot in the air at the ceiling of the trailer. He was in a room alone at the time. No one else in the home was harmed or threatened.

StClair was arrested, taken to the Lemon Creek Correctional Center and held without bail.

Police: Fatal shooting at assisted living home
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A man residing in an assisted living home in Anchorage has been arrested after a caretaker was shot and killed.

Anchorage police in a statement say 51-year-old Paul Miller has been arrested on counts of first- and second-degree murder. He was being held without bail in the Tuesday death of 63-year-old Eduardo Escalante, an employee who lived in the home and had been shot several times.

Online court documents say charging documents were pending against Miller Wednesday morning with an arraignment scheduled later in the day. No attorney was listed for Miller.

Police say detectives were continuing to investigate the shooting and a possible motive.

Washington state man killed in Alaska accident
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A logger from Washington state has died after being pinned by an uprooted tree near Ketchikan.

KTVA reports the victim was identified as 51-year-old Kenneth B. Butkovich of Castle Rock, Washington.

Alaska State Troopers say he was struck and pinned by the uprooted tree Tuesday afternoon on Cleveland Peninsula in southeast Alaska.

Troopers don't suspect foul play. His next-of-kin have been notified, and the body was sent to the state Medical Examiner's Office in Anchorage.

Hundreds turn out for hearing on Pebble proposal
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Hundreds of people turned out in Anchorage to comment on a proposal that would severely restrict development of a massive gold-and-copper mine in the Bristol Bay region.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency made the proposal last month. It would effectively bar the type of development that the mine's owner, Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd., has previously discussed.

The agency is hosting public meetings in Alaska this week. Written comments can be submitted through Sept. 19.

The Alaska Dispatch News reported that people on both sides testified about their love of salmon.

But opponents of the mine said the project posed too great a threat. Others said the project should be allowed to move through the permitting phase before any action is taken that could curtail development.

Mat-Su officials face deadline on ferry grant
PALMER, Alaska (AP) — Matanuska-Susitna officials have started discussions on how to repay a $12 million dollar debt.

KTUU reports the Federal Transit Administration is demanding the borough repay the grant it got for a ferry that has never been in service.

The borough took delivery of the ferry Susitna in 2012 to be a commuter link between Anchorage and Port MacKenzie. But there's no landing in Anchorage for the ferry, which docked in Ketchikan at the cost of $29,000 a month.

Assembly members say this is the beginning of long discussions, but that may come with a price, too. The federal agency says if the $12 million isn't repaid within 90 days, it will begin assessing an annual late fee of 6 percent. They'd rather have the money repaid within 30 days.

Missing man's body recovered from Chena River
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The body of a man who went missing in the Chena River in downtown Fairbanks has been recovered.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports volunteers found Andrew John's body Tuesday evening.

Sgt. Scott McCumby says the body has been positively identified and next-of-kin notified.

Efforts to find the body of the 35-year-old Arctic Village man have been underway since he was last seen under a bridge on the rain-swollen Chena River on Thursday

Authorities say he and another man, identified by police as Robert Francis, decided to go swimming to escape the heat.

Francis was able to get out of the water, but John was last seen under the Wendell Street bridge.

John's body was found near the Carlson Center.

Filing deadline Monday, Aug. 18
Prospective candidates for the CBJ Assembly or School Board seats are encouraged not to wait until the last minute to file the necessary paperwork in case extra time is needed for follow up on any incomplete paperwork and/or petitions requiring additional signatures.

Nominating Petitions are now available in the Municipal Clerk’s office in City Hall and on line at:

The filing period for the City & Borough of Juneau Assembly and School Board opened Friday, August 8, at 8:00 a.m. and closes at 4:30p.m. on Monday, August 18.

Voters will elect three Assemblymembers and two School Board members at the October 7, 2014 Regular Municipal Election.

Attorney to investigate alleged Juneau hazing
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The Juneau School District has hired an Anchorage attorney to help investigate alleged hazing involving high school athletes.

Schools Superintendent Mark Miller announced Tuesday that attorney John Sedor is coming on board for the investigation.

Parents have complained that their high school-age children who are athletes were kidnapped and beaten with paddles on May 31.

The district has been investigating the incident since June.

The police department also looked into the matter, but ended its criminal investigation without any arrests or charges.

Miller says the district is looking into violations of board policy and state statutes, unlike police, who look at possible violations of the penal code.

Miller said at Tuesday's Board of Education meeting that Sedor will be speaking with students and staff.

Dr. Mark Miller will be our guest on Action Line Thursday morning.

Fairweather sailings cancelled
Alaska DOT reports that due to a mechanical issue, the Ferry Fairweather sailings between Sitka and Juneau for Wednesday, August 13 are cancelled. Technicians are currently evaluating the situation. Further information will be provided as necessary.

For schedule information, please visit

Flood threat over for Mendenhall area
he flood warning,due to a glacial lake outburst for the Mendenhall lake and river, was cancelled around 5 this morning.

Meteorologist Tim Steffen with the National Weather Service in Juneau says the Mendenhall Lake level was around 8.8 feet and the Mendenhall River level was 10.7 feet at 5 this morning. Both of these are below minor flood stage.

The water levels are expected to continue to go down during the day.

Fairbanks to interview 4 police chief candidates
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The city of Fairbanks has narrowed its search for a new police chief to four candidates but is not releasing their names.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports some candidates indicated they don't want their current employer to be contacted about their applications.

Two of the four already work in the department.

Five people applied to replace former Chief Laren Zager and four were deemed qualified.

The four will be interviewed by a panel made up of Mayor John Eberhart, Councilmen Chris Anderson and Bernard Gatewood, city chief of staff Jim Williams, Human Resources director Barbara Sunday and Ana Marie Richards, a diversity and inclusion specialist at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Zager retired July 1. Deputy Chief Brad Johnson was appointed interim chief.

Polar bear surprises women in tent on Alaska coast
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A polar bear surprised two women in a tent on Alaska's Barter Island but left when one of them yelled at the animal.

Fifty-one-year-old Marie Rexford and her 81-year-old mother, both of nearby Kaktovik (kak-TOH'-vik), had spent the night at a fish camp along Alaska's northern coast and were making coffee Thursday when the polar bear put a paw on the canvas tent.

Marie Rexford's daughter, Flora Rexford, tells the Alaska Dispatch News that her mother called out, grabbed a rifle and bolted out the tent door.

She says the bear by that time was walking toward the Beaufort (BOH'-fort) Sea. It picked up the pace as Rexford continued to yell.

Federal researchers say bear-human encounters likely will increase as climate warming melts more sea ice, where polar bears hunt.

3 JBER Army units to be deactivated
JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska (AP) — Three Army units at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage will be deactivated this week.

KTUU reports this is part of the Army's reorganization plan announced last January. Overall, the Anchorage facility will lose about 800 positions, but Fort Wainwright in Fairbanks will gain about 370.

The soldiers aren't being forced out of the Army, though some may choose to end their careers. Others will stay in Alaska, while others will be transferred out of state.

The three units, from the 6th Engineer Battalion, 2d Engineer Brigade, will stand down in a Thursday ceremony.

Response exercise planned at Fort Wainwright
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Fort Wainwright officials say an installation-wide exercise is scheduled to take place next week at the base.

Officials say the purpose of the exercise set to begin Monday is to assess the ability to implement emergency response plans, procedures and policies for various emergencies.

Officials say people traveling in the area may notice increased activity and loudspeaker notifications.

People also can expect delays at Fort Wainwright access points, as well as detours throughout the week.

Groundbreaking planned on Coast Guard housing
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — A groundbreaking ceremony is planned this week for additional Coast Guard housing on base in Kodiak.

The Coast Guard says the new construction will provide 20 additional housing units. More than 1,000 Guard members live and work on base.

The commandant of the Coast Guard, Adm. Paul Zukunft, and U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski are scheduled to attend the ceremony Thursday.

[Tuesday August 12th, 2014  16th  EDITION  6:40 P.M.]

Flood warning, second release from Suicide Basin
There is now a flood warning due to a glacial lake outburst for the Mendenhall lake and river until noon Wednesday.

Meteorologist Edward Liske with the National Weather Service in Juneau says, "We had a second release from Suicide Basin. All the rain that we had over the weekend has been added onto by the glacier dam release. Mendenhall Lake is at 10.3 feet, which is just above the moderate flood stage level of ten feet. It is still rising. We expect it to crest sometime tomorrow morning at around 6:00 or 7:00 at 11.6 feet and then it will start dropping."

Flood warning issued for Juneau
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The National Weather Service has issued a flood warning for Mendenhall Lake and Mendenhall River in Juneau, following the suspected release of water from a glacially dammed lake.

Last month, a glacial outburst helped push floodwaters over side roads and into some garages and resulted in Mendenhall Lake rising to 11.82 feet, a new record.

Meteorologist Edward Liske says lake levels are expected to reach 11.6 feet by late Tuesday or Wednesday morning. Moderate flood stage is 10 feet.

The agency said water has been reported in some garages along View Drive.

Liske said officials were re-evaluating the river gauges.

He said people at the Mendenhall Glacier visitor center reported seeing ripples on the side of the glacier, indicating another outburst had occurred. The city also received recent soaking rains.

Tustumena cancellation
Due to a mechanical issue, Tustumena sailings have been canceled between Homer and Kodiak Wednesday.

The vessel is expected to resume the previously posted schedule Thursday.

Grounded vessel in Juneau possible pollution threat says Coast Guard
Coast Guard Sector Juneau personnel responded to a report of possible pollution caused by the grounding of the motor vessel Pacific Queen, moored at Harris Harbor in Juneau, Tuesday morning.

Coast Guard pollution responders arrived on scene and observed a small sheen. The hull of Pacific Queen sustained minor damage due to grounding.

The owner of the vessel took actions to regain the stability of their vessel and mitigate any threat of pollution. The Coast Guard will maintain an active role in overseeing the safety of the worksite.

“Even though this is a small spill, Coast Guard members are trained to respond to all sizes of spills of oil or hazardous materials,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Jeffry Crews, Sector Juneau marine science technician. “Any sheen is required to be reported to your local Coast Guard unit or the National Response Center 1-800-424-8802 as soon as possible.”

The owner of Pacific Queen reports the vessel has an estimated 150 gallons of diesel onboard.


Police: Fatal shooting at assisted living home
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage police say they're investigating a shooting death at an assisted living home and one man has been taken into custody.

Police spokeswoman Jennifer Castro says dispatchers received a call late Tuesday afternoon reporting that a man had been shot at the residence.

Officers and medics found a man dead inside the home.

State shores up river bank on Sterling Highway
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — Crews are piling rock on the bank along a stretch of the Kenai River trying to protect the Sterling Highway from erosion.

The Peninsula Clarion reports this work is being completed just west of Cooper Landing, at Mile 57.

State transportation department spokeswoman Jill Reese says the river has been changing its course lately, causing roadside erosion. Putting down the rock, or riprap, should keep the situation from worsening.

This work should be completed by mid-September, and will cost about $450,000.

The department plans to eventually move the highway along that stretch as a permanent fix, at a cost of about $8 million.

Begich commits to 13 debates, forums
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich announced plans Tuesday to participate in 13 debates and forums leading to the general election — even though the primary hasn't been held yet.

Begich doesn't face much of a primary challenge. But voters will decide the nominees for the Republican, Libertarian and Alaskan Independence parties in the Aug. 19 primary.

Begich spokesman Max Croes said the campaign has urged the organizers of the events to invite the nominees of all those parties, not just the Republican and Democratic candidates.

Begich has been telling supporters he believes the race will be tight. Croes said there's no calculus to asking that all candidates be included other than Begich wanting to ensure Alaskans hear as many voices as possible.

Parnell reports cash reserves in disclosure filing
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell ended the latest reporting period with more than $300,000 on hand for his re-election campaign and a $157,000 media buys.

Parnell's campaign reports expenses of nearly $180,000 between July 19 and Saturday.

The Tuesday filing with the Alaska Public Offices Commission says the campaign raised more than $35,000 during the same time period.

Campaign spokesman Luke Miller says of the advertising money, nearly $59,000 is partial payment for television ads following the Aug. 19 primary. Another $48,000 is for pre-primary radio ads.

Miller says the rest of the advertising money is for print, digital and advertising expenses before and after the primary.

Territorial Sportsmen Certifies 68th Golden North Salmon Derby Results
The Territorial Sportsmen Inc. (TSI) Board of Directors certified results of the 2014 Golden North Salmon Derby on Tuesday and can confirm that Max Mielke has won the derby with a 27.9 pound king salmon.

Max will win $10,000 cash for the first place finish, one round trip ticket on Alaska Airlines, a sterling silver belt buckle, a jacket, a custom vehicle decal and a limo ride to awards night, Thursday night at Centennial Hall in Juneau.

Mark Pusich was in second place with a 23.9 pound king and Gerald Voss was third with a 22.8 pound king. Brian McHenry took 68th place winning $2,322 in cash and prizes with a 16.3 pound coho.

The largest coho weighed 21.0 pounds and was caught by Brad Smathers. The trophy for participants ages 6-12 was won by twelve year old Jaydn Musielak who turned in a 19.5 pound coho, good for 14th place overall.

About 1,200 fishermen participated in the Derby and over three days they caught 15,018 pounds of salmon that were sold by TSI to Alaska Glacier Seafoods. 12,945 pounds of that total was coho salmon, representing a 15,025 pound decrease when compared to 2013. The total king salmon weight was 2,073 pounds, very close to the 2,031 pounds caught in 2013.

All proceeds from sales of fish from the event will be placed in the Territorial Sportsmen Scholarship Fund. Each spring TSI awards college scholarships worth $12,000 each and vocational scholarships worth $2,500 each to graduates of the Juneau School District.

Derby participants should check the Derby website at to see if they won a prize for one of the top 68 salmon or special prizes or scholarship prizes. The winning ticket numbers for the scholarship drawings and the High Five drawing for $50,000 are posted on the web site as well.

Awards will be presented on Thursday evening at Centennial Hall. Winners can pick up their special prizes and scholarship prizes from 5:30 to 7:00 PM. Drawing for the High Five contests and awarding of the prizes for the 68 largest salmon will begin at 7:00. Weighed fish winners must have their derby ticket and weigh-in slip to claim the prize, while scholarship award winners will need their derby ticket and scholarship ticket stub.

Dates were also set for the 69th Golden North Salmon Derby at the certification meeting. The event will be held on August 14, 15, and 16 of 2015.

Head on crash on Fritz Cove Road
A head on collision caused by a man cited for reckless driving Monday, sent one person to the hospital.

30 year old, Bryan Ritter Monday around 11:17 AM was cited and released after crossing the centerline on Glacier Highway near Fritz Cove Road.

Ritter’s vehicle struck an oncoming vehicle head on. Ritter was cleared at the scene by Capital City Fire Rescue.

The second driver was transported to BRH for further evaluation.

Miller: No plan for 3rd party run in Alaska Senate
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska Republican Joe Miller says he has no plans to run as a third-party candidate for U.S. Senate should he lose in next week's GOP primary.

Alaska and national Republicans fear Miller could become a spoiler should he do so, splitting the conservative vote and effectively handing the election to the Democratic incumbent Sen. Mark Begich.

Miller has a tumultuous history with the Alaska Republican Party.

The tea party favorite beat GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski in the 2010 primary, only to lose to her write-in candidacy in the general election.

But in an interview with The Associated Press, Miller says he doesn't think a third-party campaign would be successful.

Tribal leaders address alleged police brutality
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Tribal leaders in Bethel are addressing allegations of police brutality against Alaska Natives.

KYUK says the Orutsararmiut (oh-ROOT'-sah-rah-rah-mewt) Native Council wants people to come forward regarding such allegations.

ONC president Gloria Simeon says the council is very disturbed by a recent report of brutality.

A complaint was filed against a police officer by a woman visiting the town who said she saw the officer repeatedly pick up a man and slam to the ground July 12. After the complaint was filed, city officials said they were investigating.

Simeon says ONC hopes to work with the Bethel City Council to improve the relationship of police with the community and ensure basic human rights are not being violated.

Fisherman charged with wasting salmon
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A Kotzebue fisherman faces a charge of wasting fish after the Alaska State Troopers say he left salmon caught in a gill net to rot.

Troopers say 66-year-old Roswell Schaeffer Sr. left behind about 100 salmon. A summons was issued for Schaeffer last week.

Troopers said they were led to the net by an anonymous complaint but did not say where they found it. KNOM reports that Schaeffer was fined earlier this summer for employing an unlicensed crew member.

While the fish had started to rot, the Troopers said they were donated to a local dog musher who used them to feed his team.

Seward seeks sewerage fix as businesses complain
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Tourism businesses along scenic Lowell Point in Seward are raising a stink over the bad odors emanating from the city's sewage lagoon.

Campground and cabin rental owners say odors from the Lowell Point Wastewater Treatment Facility have become pungent in the last couple of years and are hurting their businesses.

KTUU-TV reports the lagoon was built more than 30 years ago and is in need of repair.

State environmental conservation officers in July 2013 found the lagoon had more than double the fecal coli form it is permitted to have.

The city this year sought a company that could make repairs for $3 million. City Manager Jim Hunt says Seward received bids Monday ranging from $3.8 million to $6 million.

State drops charges in car versus pickup case
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — State prosecutors have dropped criminal charges against a Fort Wainwright man suspected of ramming a pickup truck with his sports car.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports 29-year-old Luis Jara may still face prosecution in military court.

Fairbanks police say Jara on June 29 deliberately backed his Porsche Boxster into a Ford F-350 near the front gate of Fort Wainwright Army Post.

He was charged with third-degree felony criminal mischief, a count in which a person deliberately causes property damage of $500 or more.

Jara's attorney, Gary Stapp, afterward denied that the crash was a road rage incident and said it was an accident.

Stapp says state prosecutors dropped the charge in state court so the military could take up the case, and that the change is not unusual.

Assembly adopts secondhand store ordinance
In an effort to help JPD recover more stolen property, the CBJ Assembly adopted an ordinance that provides for the regulation of secondhand dealers to mirror that of pawn shops. The vote was 7-2 in favor of adoption.

The stricter regulations will require secondhand dealers to hold certain categories of items for 30 days, before they can sell them. The categories are precious metals, precious gems, firearms, coins, bullion, electronic equipment and tools valued over $50.

The regular meeting was held last night in Assembly Chambers.

Houston/Big Lake boundaries
An effort to upgrade Big Lake into a second-class city is still alive, but it's bumping up against neighboring Houston.

The Alaska Dispatch reports that the state's local boundary commission is combining Big Lake's incorporation bid with Houston's proposed land annexation.

Houston is trying to grow by 2-and-a-half square miles. The land includes property owned by Wasilla-based Knikatnu Village Corporation near a proposed railroad extension to Port Mackenzie.

Knikatnu requested to make the land part of Houston because of "preferred zoning" and lower taxes.

Meanwhile, Big Lake residents continue to organize an effort to bring a low-level city government to the area.
Sponsors submitted 263 signatures to the local boundary commission in January, after their first petition fell a few signatures short in December.

A meeting on the incorporation and annexation bids is scheduled for next month.

UAA streamlining programs
A year-long effort to prioritize the programs at the University of Alaska Anchorage puts a strong emphasis on arts and humanities.

The Alaska Dispatch reports that history, literature, languages, philosophy, theater, and dance rank high. At the bottom of the list are certification programs with little student interest, as well as the bachelor's degree in Chemistry. Those programs could be phased out.

Faculty members got their first look at the prioritization list Monday, in advance of its public release. The ranking is not meant to evaluate the quality of the programs but how well they fit with U-A-A's mission.

The Chancellor's office will review the list and decide which programs will be eliminated.

Primary only a week away
A reminder from the State of Alaska, Division of Elections; the Primary Election is a week away on August 19th. Polls are open 7 a.m. until 8 p.m.

Voters will be deciding on United States Senator, United States Representative, Governor, Lieutenant Governor, State Senator, State Representative and a ballot measure.

When you go vote, bring identification.

If your name is not on the list or you don’t have ID, you may vote a questioned ballot. The questioned ballot updates your voter registration.

If you need language or other assistance while voting, ask the election board or bring somebody to assist you.

APOC approves advisory opinion on ballot measures
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska Public Offices Commission has approved an advisory opinion that found that lawmakers can use state resources, like their legislative websites, to make known their positions on referenda and ballot measures.

Guidance on the issue was requested by House Speaker Mike Chenault and Senate President Charlie Huggins.

The advisory opinion referenced a legislative ethics committee decision that found action to support or oppose an initiative was related to lawmakers' duties.

But the advisory opinion said that in the future when lawmakers use state resources to take such positions, the use of state resources should be disclosed on an independent expenditure report and communications expressing an opinion on a ballot measure should include a "paid for" tag.

The commission approved the decision on a 4-1 vote last week.

Spokesman: Sullivan voted, but not in Senate race
UNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A spokesman for Republican U.S. Senate contender Dan Sullivan says Sullivan voted in the 2010 election, just not that year's contested Senate race.

During a yes-or-no lightning round in a debate Sunday night, Sullivan said no when asked if he'd written in Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski's name in the 2010 race. Murkowski mounted a general-election write-in campaign to keep her job after losing to tea party favorite Joe Miller in the primary.

Miller is seeking the GOP nomination again this year. Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell is also running. Treadwell said he wrote-in Murkowski.

Sullivan spokesman Mike Anderson said Sullivan abstained from voting in the Senate race out of concern his vote would be a conflict of interest with his duties as attorney general, a post Sullivan held during the election.

August 11th, 2014  11TH  EDITION  7:07 P.M.]

Back to school vaccine clinic in Juneau
A Back-to-school vaccine clinic is being held by the Juneau Public Health Center at the Nugget Mall, this Saturday, August 16th from 9 am until 2 pm.

All vaccines will be free of charge for those who qualify. All childhood immunizations will be available, as well as limited adult vaccines like Shingles and Tetanus, Diphtheria, and Pertussis vaccines.

Be sure your kids don’t miss the first day of school. Get ready by bringing your child and their most up-to-date vaccine record to the clinic.

Call the Juneau Public Health Center at 907-465-3353 for more information.

Mat-Su man dies after being thrown from packraft
COPPER CENTER, Alaska (AP) ?? The body of a man has been recovered after a rafting accident in Wrangell-St. Elias National Park.

National Park Service officials in a release identified the victim as Rob Kehrer. His body was recovered Sunday afternoon.

Kehrer was thrown from his packraft on the Tana River inside the park and last seen by his rafting partner Saturday afternoon.

Officials were notified Sunday morning, and ground and aerial searches were conducted.

An Alaska Air National Guard helicopter found the body about 2 1/2 miles downstream from where he was last seen.

Park official say the river is a swift and cold glacial tributary of the Chitina River, and it's known for its difficult rapids.

Kehrer's hometown wasn't immediately known, but the park service said he was from the Matanuska-Susitna Borough.

Human remains found near Tuntaltuliak
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Authorities say human remains found in southwest Alaska appear to be those of a man missing since October.

KYUK reports Alaska State Troopers believe the remains are those of Nick Cooke. They were found Friday on the bank of the Kuskokwim River, near the village of Tuntaltuliak (toon-tuh-TOO'-lee-ak).

The remains have been sent to the state Medical Examiner's Office for positive identification. But the family confirmed the identity to the Bethel radio station and said they're planning a burial service in Bethel this week.

Foul play isn't suspected in Cooke's death.

Cooke, who was 37, and 46-year-old Jim Lee Napoka of Tuluksak (tuh-LUK'-sak) left Bethel by boat Oct. 22 for a funeral in Tuntaltuliak, but never arrived. Their sunken boat was found about a week later.

Napoka remains missing.

Pro-Begich group benefits from Senate Majority PAC
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A political action committee founded by former aides to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid provided the sole funding for a super PAC supporting Democratic Sen. Mark Begich in July.

Between July 1 and July 30, Put Alaska First reported nearly $670,000 in contributions from the Senate Majority PAC. It ended the period with a negative balance of nearly $40,000.

Senate Majority PAC has been a major funder of Put Alaska First, which for months has run ads against the presumptive GOP front-runner Dan Sullivan and recently turned attention to another Republican in the race, Mead Treadwell.

The primary is Aug. 19.

SEARHC free presentation on Affordable Care Act health insurance
SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium is hosting two free presentations in Juneau on Tuesday from 5:30-6:30pm at the Downtown Public Library and Thursday from noon to 1:00pm at the Valley Public Library to assist those that have signed up for insurance through the Affordable Care Act Health Insurance Marketplace and would like to know more about how their insurance works.

Some people now have insurance for the first time and are not clear about how to use it. Others may find the paperwork confusing. Additionally there are those that have not signed up and are wondering if they are still able to do so, or when the next open enrollment will be. This presentation will address all of those topics, and there will be ample time for those in attendance to ask questions.

Search ends for missing Missouri man in Alaska
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say the search for a missing Missouri man has been suspended.

Troopers say no clues have been found on the whereabouts of 71-year-old Jerry Warner of Richland, Missouri.

Warner went missing Aug. 3 after he reportedly left a recreational vehicle he and his girlfriend had parked at the Willow Creek Resort, about 50 miles north of Anchorage.

At the time, Warner was heading for a solo fishing trip at Willow Creek. He was carrying a fishing pole and a walking stick, but no cell phone, weapon and little or no food.

Troopers say that any clues arising in the future would be analyzed and appropriate resources would be deployed.

Hunters collect blood samples in research project
NOME, Alaska (AP) — Subsistence hunters in western Alaska will help collect blood specimens from mammals to test for threats to food security.

KNOM reports the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium will distribute dried filter paper to hunters throughout the Bering Strait region.

Hunters will collect blood samples on dried filter paper, and mail those off with notes on what animal it was form, the sex, where it was collected and the date.

The blood samples will be tested for things such as metal agents like mercury, human-made contaminants like PCBs and antibodies to pathogens.

Researchers theorize contaminants are escalating in the Arctic. If these substances are increasing, they could accumulate in the bodies of subsistence animals and threaten feed security for communities in western Alaska.

The project will run for three years.

Basketball camp teaches Tlingit language
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A basketball camp in Juneau is all about revitalizing the Tlingit (CLINK'-it) language.

The Sealaska Heritage Institute sponsors the summer camps to help youngsters learn Tlingit. Linguists say there are fewer than 150 native Tlingit speakers.

On the first day of camp last week, a dozen middle and high school students participated at the University of Alaska Southeast.

As the students stretched, Jessica Chester counted to 10 in Tlingit. Chester has been helping out with the basketball camps since 2006.

Chester says all of the basketball drills incorporate some Tlingit.

Alaska is only the second state behind Hawaii to recognize indigenous languages. Gov. Sean Parnell is expected to sign a bill passed earlier this year that designates 20 Alaska Native languages as official state languages.

Congested UAA campus area sees lane closures
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An already congested area of Anchorage will now see additional lane closures because of a yearlong project.

KTUU reports this is due to the second phase of construction for a new parking garage at the University of Alaska Anchorage.

Authorities say work began Friday on the 485-space parking garage behind the engineering building on UAA Drive.

Mallard Lane will be closed for a year because of the construction, and it will be realigned to meet city easement codes.

A multi-use trail north of the Wells Fargo Sports Complex will also be closed for the year during construction.

Crew, controller faulted in 2013 fatal crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Federal investigators have concluded that two Anchorage commercial pilots failed to maintain minimal clearance while circling the Dillingham airport before they died in a 2013 crash.

A National Transportation Safety Board report Monday also faults the air traffic controller who issued ambiguous instructions and didn't notice the plane's descent to a dangerous altitude.

The Ace Air Cargo crashed March, 8, 2013, about 20 miles northeast of Dillingham in southwest Alaska.

The crash killed 38-year-old pilot Jeff Day and 21-year-old co-pilot Neil Jensen.

They had approached the Dillingham airport and received permission to descend to 2,000 feet but asked to enter a holding pattern while they checked on runway conditions.

The minimum safe altitude southeast of the airport is 5,400 feet and the plane crashed at just below 2,000 feet.

Report: Many Fairbanks homes lack indoor plumbing
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A new report says Fairbanks has a far higher-than-average number of homes lacking complete plumbing.

The report by the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development says just more than 6 percent of Fairbanks North Star Borough homes lack complete plumbing.

Across Alaska, 4.7 percent of homes lack complete plumbing. Nationally, the figure is .5 percent.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Fairbanks numbers are boosted by people who choose to live in dry cabins.

Labor Department economist Karinne Wiebold (WE'-bold) says the high cost of energy drives many to live in cabins without running water.

She also says many people choose cabins for the experience.

Wiebold herself grew up in Ester outside Fairbanks and lived for a while in a dry cabin before moving recently to Juneau.

Senate hopeful Treadwell acknowledges smoking pot
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Mead Treadwell says he has smoked marijuana.

The yes-or-no lightning round question came during a televised debate featuring the major GOP candidates for the seat held by Democratic Sen. Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election: Treadwell, former state Attorney General Dan Sullivan and tea party favorite Joe Miller.

Sullivan and Miller said they hadn't smoked pot.

The candidates also were asked if they'd written-in Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski's name in 2010. Miller defeated Murkowski in the GOP primary that year only to see her mount a general election write-in campaign to keep her job.

As Sullivan mulled the question, Miller said, "the truth." Sullivan said no.

Sullivan's campaign said he didn't vote in that race, which happened while he was attorney general. Treadwell said yes.

68th Annual Golden North Salmon Derby Unofficial Results
Territorial Sportsmen Inc. (TSI) is pleased to announce the unofficial winners of the 68th Golden North Salmon Derby. Max Mielke won the derby with a 27.9 pound king salmon which was turned in at the Douglas Weigh Station at 2:44 pm on Friday, August 8th. Second place goes to Mark Pusich with a 23.9 pound king, followed by Gerald Voss with a 22.8 pound king, both of which were also turned in at Douglas.

“We would like to extend our congratulations to Max Mielke and all of the prize winners in this year’s derby,” said Derby Chairman Mike Satre. “We would also like to thank all of the participants who braved a wet and blustery weekend in order to catch and turn in their scholarship fish during the event. These fish, as well as all of the weighed fish, were sold to provide funding of the Territorial Sportsmen Scholarship Fund,” Satre added.

Full results for the event will be available on the derby website,  as soon as they are available. All standings are unofficial until the results have been certified by the TSI Board on Tuesday, August 13th, after which the certified results will be posted to the website.

Awards for the top 68 weighed fish, as well as all special and scholarship prizes, will be handed out on Thursday evening, August 14 at 7:00 pm at Centennial Hall in Juneau. All award winners are reminded to bring their derby ticket and weigh stub to claim their prize.

[Sunday August 10th, 2014  5th  EDITION  7:43 P.M.]

2014 Salmon Derby Awards Ceremony
Salmon Derby Prizes will be awarded Thursday night at 7:00 at Centennial Hall.
• Prize winners or designated representatives must attend the awards ceremony.
• Winners must present their entry and weigh-in ticket stubs at the ceremony in order to claim their prize.
• Winners of the Scholarship Fund Prizes and Special Prizes must show their scholarship ticket to claim their prize from Territorial Sportsmen, Inc. at the awards ceremony.
• Drawing will be done after the derby and prize will be available at Awards night.
• Winners must have their derby ticket with them to collect the prize.

Find more information at

Unofficial Top 10 68th Golden North Salmon Derby


1. MAX MIELKE - 27.9 - K - DOUGLAS - FRI


3. JERRY VOSS - 22.8 - K - DOUGLAS - SAT




7. BETSY HAYS - 21.9 - K - DOUGLAS - SUN





Mark Puich (left) gets a 23.9 lb King Sunday and almost reels in that top spot, but it looks like Max Mielke (right) and his King reign supreme in this contest.


News of the North's Lori James (3rd from left) reports Sunday from Amalga Harbor with the Hootchie Mamas.

Facebook Contest:

Kelly Peres has just finished how many years of bringing you ”Golden North Salmon Derby Reports”?

Be the first to answer correctly on our facebook page and you’ll receive a Mt. Roberts Tram Day Pass.

Find this contest and more pics at

Pilot killed, passenger injured in Big Lake crash
BIG LAKE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a pilot is dead and his passenger is being treated for life-threatening injuries after a plane crash at the Big Lake Airport north of Anchorage.

The single-engine Piper Comanche took suffered some kind of engine trouble after taking off Sunday just before 2:30 a.m. Investigators say the pilot, 50-year-old Christopher Cyphers, of Anchorage, tried to return to the airport for an emergency landing, but the plane struck a tree.

Cyphers was killed and the passenger was taken to an Anchorage-area hospital.

Man upset over business not cashing check arrested, stolen gun found
An employee of a business called Juneau Police reporting a disturbance inside of the building in the 9100 block of Glacier Highway Friday afternoon around 5:30.

A man’s request to cash a check had been refused by the company, and he was yelling profanities and making obscene gestures at employees and customers. Staff at the business reported the person left but then returned several times.

JPD officers responded and located the man in the area, driving a Nissan Pathfinder. Officers stopped the vehicle, and contacted the driver, 32 year-old Jeffrey T. Tinney, and his passenger, a 24 year-old female. Officers detained Tinney in connection with an active investigation stemming from a residential burglary reported on August 6th, on Amalga Street in the Mendenhall Valley. During the course of the investigation the officers recovered property reported stolen in the burglary, including a firearm.

Tinney was lodged at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center on one count of Burglary in the 1st Degree (a class B felony), two counts of Theft in the Second Degree ( a class C felony), Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance in the Fourth Degree (class C felony), and Driving Without a Valid License (a class B misdemeanor). He was held without bail.

North Slope Borough leaders getting pay raises
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — North Slope Borough's mayor and at least 10 other leaders are getting big raises.

Alaska Dispatch News reports that Mayor Charlotte Brower will see her salary jump by about $24,000 to more than $222,000. That's roughly $90,000 more than Anchorage Mayor Dan Sullivan makes.

Other borough leaders are getting raises of up to 19 percent.

Officials say the raises are long overdue. Brower told Borough Assembly members she sought higher pay for department heads in order to attract key employees who could make more money working for other agencies and corporations in the oil-rich North Slope region.

The North Slope Borough serves seven villages and the city of Barrow, with about 9,700 residents spread across an area the size of Minnesota. The communities can only be reached by plane. The Department of Defense ranks Barrow as one of the costliest places to live in Alaska.

Pro-Begich super PAC takes on Treadwell
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A super PAC that supports Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich has a new ad that, for the first time, takes on Republican Senate hopeful Mead Treadwell.

Put Alaska First's ad also features Republican Dan Sullivan, the presumptive front-runner in the race who has been a target of the group for months.

Treadwell sees his inclusion as a sign that Put Alaska First sees him as a threat, with the Aug. 19 primary looming. Put Alaska First's treasurer declined to comment on that.

The ad says Treadwell launched a company that "pushed a national ID card," in trying to paint him as supporting more government control.

Treadwell says a company he helped found in the 1990s made technology to validate the authenticity of currency, passports and photo identifications.

Miller ends July with nearly $190K on hand
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Joe Miller had about $190,000 on hand at the end of July as his campaign headed toward this month's primary.

Miller reported raising about $34,000 between July 1 and July 30. He spent nearly $150,000 during that period, and showed an unpaid credit card balance of about $20,000 as a debt.

Miller is one of the three prominent Republicans vying for that party's nomination for the seat held by Democrat Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election.

Another GOP candidate, Dan Sullivan, brought in about $264,000 and spent about $980,000, leaving him with just under $1 million, as of July 30.

The July pre-primary filing from Republican Mead Treadwell hasn't shown up yet on the Federal Election Commission website.

Feds want ferry grants back from Mat-Su borough
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Federal Transit Administration wants $12.3 million back from the Matanuska-Susitna Borough for the borough's failed Knik Arm ferry plan.

Acting FTA Administrator Therese McMillan sent a letter to Mat-Su Borough Manager John Moosey Aug. 5 demanding repayment of the grant money. The $12.3 million is the portion of approximately $21.2 million in grants approved for the project that the borough has spent.

The letter states that the borough has 30 days to repay the Transportation Department agency before FTA begins collections through administrative offset.

Moosey said in an official statement on the borough's website that he was not surprised by the letter.

"I expected this (ferry crossing) to be done much easier but this was a challenge," he said. "We've been working diligently looking for solutions to this issue for the last 2.5 years. If we had ferry landings, I'm confident we would not be here today."

McMillan wrote that the FTA is required to begin debt collection per the terms of the grants and does not have the legal authority to waive the debt despite the bind the borough is in.

The Mat-Su Borough Assembly has scheduled a special meeting Aug. 12 to address the issue.

The ferry vessel, the M/V Susitna, was built as a half-scale naval prototype landing craft vessel, with an agreement that the borough would take ownership and put it to use as a shuttle between Port MacKenzie and Anchorage when the U.S. Navy was through with it.

The Navy paid for the lion share of the $78 million construction bill.

The borough has been looking to sell or give away the ferry for more than a year since plans to build a terminal dock in Anchorage fell through.

If the Susitna is sold to a private entity the borough would have to pay back much of the FTA grant money. However, if it can be donated to an eligible domestic government, the Mat-Su Borough might be able to seek grant forgiveness, a borough release states.

The borough has approached the Alaska Marine Highway System and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration about donating the Susitna, but an agreement couldn't be reached.

Private groups have made offers to purchase the Susitna, but none would have covered the cost to repay the grants.

The Philippine Navy and an oilfield service company are expected to inspect the Susitna, docked at Ward Cove near Ketchikan, later this month.

Dock fees, insurance and general upkeep have cost the borough several hundred thousand dollars per month while the Susitna has gone unused, Mat-Su officials have stated.

The $3.6 million ferry terminal at Port MacKenzie is part of the $12.3 million FTA debt, according to the borough.

Despite being unwanted, the 195-foot Susitna is a vessel with remarkable capabilities. The catamaran ferry has the space to hold up to 129 passengers, 20 vehicles and has a 35-ton overall freight capacity. It has a main deck that can be lowered to offload equipment and can land on beaches in as little as four feet of water.

Red Flag military begin at Eielson
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Eielson Air Force Base in Alaska's interior has kicked off its third series of Red Flag exercises of the year.

The exercises, taking place at the 65,000-square-mile Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex, began Friday.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that air operations will be conducted until Aug. 22 out of Eielson, as well as Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage.

The exercises will include drills from U.S. and allied pilots, air crews and support personnel.

The entire Yukon Training Area will be closed through Aug. 23 because of the training events. People with regular access through military lands must use an alternate route to leased or private properties.

[Saturday August 9th, 2014  11th  EDITION  7:19 P.M.]

Salmon Derby booklet has boundary error
The Golden North Salmon Derby web site announces:

Please note, there is an error in the 2014 Derby Booklet and the Derby Fishing Area is mislabeled. The CORRECT map can be found here. The derby boundaries as described in the Derby Rules remain the official boundaries of the event and the map is just for guidance."

Salmon Derby Top 10 for Saturday Afternoon
Here are the Unofficial Top 10 as of 4:30 PM - 8/9/14
1. MAX MIELKE - 27.9 - K - DOUGLAS - FRI

2. JERRY VOSS - 22.8 - K - DOUGLAS - SAT








10. FINN YATES - 19.2 - K - DOUGLAS - 9 YRS OLD - FRI

For more information visit the official website for The 68th Golden North Salmon Derby.

Caption this Golden North Salmon Derby pic and you could win from KINY

Caption this Photo Contest! If your caption is chosen, you'll be sporting a pair of KINY 2014 Derby Caps and a pair of Gross Alaska Theater passes! Winner will be announced on KINY Monday morning.

For more Salmon Derby pics and to enter your caption, visit our facebook page at

Anchorage benefiting from strong convention season
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A busy convention season is expected to pump millions of dollars into the Anchorage economy this year.

KTUU-TV reports the second of three large conventions coming to the city is set to open Sunday.

The National and Western Council of State Governments are combining their annual conventions in Anchorage. Officials say that event that will bring 1,800 lawmakers and their families to Alaska for a week.

They will be flying in from all 50 states, six Canadian provinces, the District of Columbia and three of the U.S. territories.

Council Director David Adkins says the meeting will bring the whole United States and Canada to Anchorage.

Appeals court: Fairbanks officer's search illegal
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A police officer jammed his foot into a Fairbanks apartment during a 2010 drug raid, preventing a resident from shutting the door. The officer then found guns, cash and drugs.

But all of the evidence was tossed on Friday, along with the conviction of the resident, Isaac D. Siedentop.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the Alaska Court of Appeals threw out the conviction because the officer's actions constituted an illegal search.

Prosecutors argued that a search warrant was issued — albeit for a different person at the residence.

The appeals court found that argument wanting.

The court's three judges said the warrant was for a man who fled electronic monitoring, and didn't give police justification to enter a home where that man was only rumored to be.

Coast Guard, federal, state agencies locate, rescue overdue boater on Hogan Island
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard and Forest Service located and rescued the missing boater reported overdue on Hogan Island, Friday evening.

A Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew safely hoisted the man for transport to a hospital in Sitka at approximately 7 p.m.

A Forest Service float plane crew spotted the missing boater’s skiff and relayed the location to the Jayhawk helicopter crew. The Forest Service crew landed near the survivor on a rock pinnacle two miles south of his skiff.
Once the Jayhawk crew arrived on scene, a rescue swimmer was lowered and the mariner was hoisted for transport to Sitka.

The boater had reportedly run out of gas and drifted into the north side of Hogan Island. The man was found in good health.

Coast Guard Cutter Maple arrived on scene and recovered the skiff.

“This was a great team effort between the Coast Guard, federal, state and local partners, and good Samaritans who aided us in searching and successfully locating the missing mariner,” said Lt. Jason Condon, Coast Guard Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter pilot. “We appreciate all the assistance we received during this mission and are glad we were able to get the man the help he needed.”

Weather at the time of the rescue was reported as 17 mph winds and 10 miles visibility.

Disturbance at local business ends in arrest
According to a JPD release, on Friday Aug. 8 around 5:30 in the afternoon an employee of a business in the 9100 block of Glacier Highway called Juneau Police reporting a disturbance inside of the building.

A man’s request to cash a check had been refused by the company, and he was yelling profanities and making obscene gestures at employees and customers. Staff at the business reported the person left, but then returned several times. JPD officers responded and located the man in the area, driving a Nissan Pathfinder which the complainant reported seeing the man driving. Officers stopped the vehicle, and contacted the driver, 32 year-old Jeffrey T. Tinney, and his passenger, a 24 year-old female.

Officers detained Tinney in connection with an active investigation stemming from a residential burglary reported on August 6th, on Amalga Street in the Mendenhall Valley. During the course of the investigation, the officers recovered property reported stolen in a burglary, including a firearm.

Tinney was lodged at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center on one count of Burglary in the 1st Degree (a class B felony), two counts of Theft in the Second Degree ( a class C felony), Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance in the Fourth Degree (class C felony), and Driving Without a Valid License (a class B misdemeanor). He was held without bail. The investigation into this case is continuing.

Driving homicide charge
Three months after a traffic accident that killed a girl on a bicycle, an Anchorage woman has been charged with criminally negligent homicide.

Forty-seven-year-old Yang Thao was arrested Friday after a grand jury handed down the indictment for the crash May 9th at Dimond Estates Mobile Home Park.

Four-year-old Ashley Xiong was riding her bike in the road when Thao rounded a corner in her S-U-V and struck the girl.

Anchorage police say the investigation took several months because toxicology tests had to be conducted by a lab in Washington state.

The results showed Thao was not intoxicated at the time of the crash. However, police say she was talking on a cell phone while driving. Thao told police she hung up before the crash, but police say records show the call continued until after the first 9-1-1 call reported the crash.

Thao was released on bail Friday. A trial has not been scheduled. If convicted of criminally negligent homicide, she faces up to four years in prison.

Public meetings on Pebble project
The EPA will hold public meetings in Alaska next week to hear comments about their proposal to preemptively block the Pebble project.

Anchorage: Tuesday, Aug. 12 at 2 p.m., Egan Center – Cook and Artegan Rooms
New Stuyahok: Wednesday, Aug. 13 at 5 p.m., Cetuyaraq Community Center
Nondalton: Wednesday, Aug. 13 at 5 p.m., Nondalton Community Center
Kokhanok: Thursday, Aug. 14 at 5 p.m., Location to be announced
Dillingham: Thursday, Aug. 14 at 5 p.m., Middle School Gymnasium
Iliamna: Friday, Aug. 15 at noon, Community Center
Igiugig: Friday, Aug. 15 at noon, Tribal Hall

You can also send an email via

Ferry Chenega sailings cancelled
MV Chenega sailings for Saturday, August 9 have been canceled due to high winds and seas in Prince William Sound.

The vessel is expected to return to regularly scheduled sailings Sunday, August 10, 2014. Travelers may view the most current schedule information online at

AMHS staff is contacting affected passengers; for more information, please call your local terminal by dialing 1-907-465-3941 or toll-free at 1-800-642-0066.

Bethel officer faces police brutality complaint
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — A police brutality complaint has been filed against a Bethel officer, and city officials say they are investigating.

KYUK reports Linda Green claims she saw a police officer repeatedly pick up a man and slam him to the ground July 12. She filed a complaint that day.

Green says she went to the media after city officials weren't responsive.

A police report for an incident about the same time says an officer confronted a highly intoxicated "Indian" male, who was verbally abusive. The officer feared the man had a weapon. He arrested the man, and took him to a hospital, where he was cleared.

Court transcripts indicate the man couldn't appear at a hearing the next day because he was hospitalized for his injuries, including possibly a broken collarbone.

[Friday August 8th, 2014  15TH  EDITION  7:13 P.M.]

Woman driven over and dragged in downtown Juneau
Capital City Fire Rescue says they found a female that had been driven over by a car and dragged. She was taken to Bartlett Regional Hospital with advanced life support care but was in stable condition.

According to a Juneau Police Department bulletin, the incident happened just before 8:00 AM Friday on Willoughby Ave.

Salmon Derby Update:
As of around 2:30 PM there were about a thousand plus validated fishermen participating in the 68th Golden North Salmon Derby.

The early leader was Larry Hays with a fish weighing in at 21.3 lbs. He caught his King out of Douglas.

The afternoon leader is Max Mielke with a King at 27.9 lbs weighed in at Douglas.

See more Salmon Derby pics on our facebook page

(Max Mielke at Douglas Harbor)

Coast Guard encourages safety during weekend Salmon Derby in Juneau
JUNEAU, Alaska — Coast Guard Sector Juneau encourages boaters to make safety a priority during the Golden North Salmon Derby this weekend.

The Coast Guard reminds all boaters to boat responsibly while on the water and avoid the consumption of alcohol. The use of life jackets, emergency beacons, flares, float plans and appropriate communications devices are advised for anyone operating a watercraft.

"Boaters need to be aware that Alaska is known for rapidly changing weather and frigid waters.” said Lt. Jennifer Ferreira, Sector Juneau public affairs officer. "We want to ensure that anyone going out on the water has planned ahead, checked the weather, filed a float plan and is wearing life jackets."

The Coast Guard recommends that every boater carry the following safety items:
-A 406 Mhz EPIRB (make sure you register it after purchase, or rescuers may be delayed in reaching you! In remote Alaska areas, this may become your ONLY way to call for help.)
-A Coast Guard-approved life jacket (because they float, you don’t…)
-A handheld VHF marine radio with extra batteries
-A Coast Guard approved fire extinguisher
-A first aid kit packed in a watertight container
-A signaling kit (mirror, whistle and day/ night flares)
-Warm and water resistant clothing appropriate for Alaska’s extreme environments
-And for larger boats, a life raft with a survival kit

Search underway for missing man in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A search is being conducted for a man missing in the Chena River in downtown Fairbanks.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports a witness saw two men in the water under the Wendell Street bridge about 2:30 p.m., Thursday, but one was able to get out.

Several firefighters in boats are looking for the other man.

There was no immediate information as to how the men wound up in the river.

Fairbanks Battalion Chief Keith Berrian says a person missing in the river is usually found 100 yards of where contact was lost. He said a person can survive the frigid water for about an hour if they don't have protection.

Permanent Fund tops $50B threshold
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska Permanent Fund ended the fiscal year with a value of $51.2 billion.

Officials say in a release it's the first time that the fund, which provides the annual oil-wealth checks to the state's residents, has topped the $50 billion mark.

The rise was attributed to a strong year for the fund's $21 billion stock portfolio.

Officials also transferred $1.2 billion of statutory net income to the Permanent Fund Dividend Division for this year's annual PFD payment. KTUU reports that's double what was transferred for last year's check.

Nearly every single resident of the state in 2013 received a check for $900 for their share of the state's oil wealth.

JPD Crime of the Week: Items stolen from tour operator's van
A tour operator reports someone illegally entered his van parked on North Douglas near Outer Point.

Juneau Police Lieutenant, David Campbell, says the report came in Tuesday morning around 11:00 and several items were stolen from the van, including backpacks, electronics, money, and personal identification.

Anyone with information concerning this crime is encouraged to log on to the Juneau Crime Line Web site and report their tip.

Alaska officials question 'law school' proposal
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — State postsecondary school officials are taking action to block a proposed Alaska law school.

The Alaska Commission on Postsecondary Education says the proposed law school has not sought the commission's approval to operate and violates state statute.

The commission has asked the Department of Law to draft a cease and desist order against the outfit calling itself "Alaska Law School, In God We Trust" on the Internet.

The school's website claims the school will open in March 2015. Daun DeVore is listed as founder and dean.

Marygold Melli, a professor emerita at University of Wisconsin Law School, is listed as a member of the Alaska Law School's board but says she has nothing to do with an Alaska law school.

No charges as Juneau police end hazing probe
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Juneau police say they have ended a criminal investigation into a hazing ritual that might have crossed the line into assault.

The case was closed because victims refused to come forward.

Police investigated complaints from parents that their children who took part in high school athletics had been beaten with wooden paddles in an initiation ritual.

Police Chief Bryce Johnson says their investigation revealed who the perpetrators and victims were. But since no one was willing to come forward to be a witness, police weren't able to arrest or bring charges against anyone.

Police, troopers chase down Kodiak theft suspect
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — A woman led Kodiak law enforcement officers on an extended chase after jumping into a man's idling truck and driving off.

The Kodiak Daily Mirror reports 33-year-old Curtis Howell on Wednesday dropped off his daughters at Kodiak Baptist Mission Day Care and left his pickup running.

He says he walked the girls 25 feet into the building in and was signing them in when a blond woman got into his truck, locked the doors and took off.

Howell called 911.

Alaska State Troopers and Kodiak police spotted the truck and pursued it for 19 minutes, eventually flattening its tires with spikes. Officers had to break windows to remove the woman.

Troopers say they anticipate the 29-year-old woman will be charged with vehicle theft, failure to stop and reckless driving.

Central NY airport new site for drone safety tests
ROME, N.Y. (AP) — Federal regulators have approved drone research flights at a central New York airport, one of six sites nationally chosen to assess the safety of the aerial robots in already busy skies.

The other mission at Griffiss International Airport in Rome will be to study how drones can help farmers stay on top of pests, weeds and the conditions of their crops.

The NUAIR Alliance, a consortium of private industry, academic institutions and the military, says flights could begin in a couple of weeks after the Federal Aviation Administration approval Thursday. Future operations will include Massachusetts.

Congress told the FAA in 2012 to develop guidelines for commercial drone operations by the end of 2015.

That process is behind schedule and the FAA is wrestling with increasing unauthorized drone activity.

The other test sites are in Alaska, North Dakota, Nevada, Texas and Virginia.

Grand jury indicts teen in fatal cyclist crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A grand jury has indicted a 17-year-old Anchorage driver on two felony counts in the death of bicyclist in July.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports Alexandra Ellis was indicted on counts of manslaughter and failing to assist an injured person after an accident in the death of 51-year-old Jeffery Dusenbury.

She's also charged with driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Police say Dusenbury was struck by a pickup while riding July 19 on a south Anchorage street.

Investigators say Ellis was driving in the same direction as the bicycle but decided she was heading the wrong way.

Police say she stopped, backed up, struck the bicycle and drove off.

Dusenbury was wearing a helmet but died within an hour after the crash.

Man charged with fatally stabbing uncle
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 38-year-old man has been charged with fatally stabbing his uncle at a home in northeast Anchorage.

KTUU-TV reports 38-year-old Ralph Nayokpuk (neye-AHK'-puhk) is charged with first- and second-degree murder in the death Wednesday night of 51-year-old Ronald Mullins.

Police say the men were with other family members and began to argue as Nayokpuk was cutting garlic and onions with a butcher knife.

Police say the argument became intense and Mullins threatened to call police.

Investigators say Nayokpuk stabbed Mullins at least two or three times and afterward expressed remorse to an officer.

Judge Gregory Motyka on Thursday set bail at $500,000.

Coast Guard mulls downsizing Kodiak station
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — The Coast Guard is considering a proposal to downsize its Kodiak communications station.

The Kodiak Daily Mirror reports the proposal would cut 20 of the 53 positions.

The communications station is 3 miles from the Coast Guard base.

The station's primary mission is for search and rescue operations. It's where personnel monitor radio traffic from ships and planes.

Lt. Cmdr. Paul Salerno says nothing has been decided yet. If the downsizing is approved, it would begin in summer 2015.

Salerno says positions cut would be commanding and high-ranking positions, including his. All three officer positions at the station and 17 enlisted positions would be cut. Two civilian positions that are currently vacant are being transferred to Virginia.

Salerno is scheduled to be transferred to another unit next year.

Ketchikan to demolish old Smither's  pool
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — A pool that had been in use for the last four decades in Ketchikan will be demolished.

The Ketchikan Daily News reports the borough assembly this week approved a $688,000 contract to demolish the Mike Smithers Pool.

The lot near Ketchikan High School will be filled in. Borough officials say no development is currently planned at the site.

The pool has been in use since the 1970s, but it was replaced by the Gateway Aquatic Center in 2012.

EPA plans Alaska meetings on proposed restrictions
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is hosting public meetings in Alaska on proposed restrictions for development of the Pebble Mine.

Meetings are set for Tuesday in Anchorage, Wednesday in New Stuyahok and Nondalton, Thursday in Kokhanok and Dillingham and Friday in Iliamna and Igiugig.

EPA has concluded large-scale mining in the Bristol Bay watershed poses significant risks to salmon. The agency later invoked a rarely-used process through which it could ultimately restrict or prohibit development of the proposed mine to protect the fishery.

EPA recently proposed restrictions that would effectively block the level of development that the Pebble Mine's owners have publicly laid out. That's what the agency is taking comments on.

The Pebble Limited Partnership and state have sued EPA, alleging the agency overstepped its authority.

Coast Guard responds to boater under the influence near Juneau, Alaska
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard and local response authorities responded to a boating under the influence call in Auke Bay, Wednesday.

A Coast Guard Station Juneau 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew detained the operator and transferred him to Juneau Police Department upon arriving in Auke Bay.

Coast Guard Sector Juneau command center watchstanders received an anonymous tip that the operator of Orca Odysea, a whale watching tour boat homeported in Auke Bay, was under the influence of alcohol while operating a tour with 13 passengers aboard. The watchstanders launched the RB-M crew.

Once on scene the Coast Guard crew boarded the Orca Odysea and conducted a field sobriety test with the vessel’s operator. When the operator did not successfully complete the test he was transferred from the Orca Odysea to the RB-M. The Coast Guard crew escorted the Orca Odysea back to Auke Bay and transferred custody of the vessel’s operator to the Juneau Police Department.

“We are currently undergoing an investigation in regards to the situation,” said Cmdr. Mark Burd, Chief of Response, Coast Guard Sector Juneau. “It is our duty as the Coast Guard to make sure that all licensed mariners are following the rules and keeping our waters safe. When mariners are suspected to have broken the laws the Coast Guard will investigate the situation to the fullest and hold those who are proven without doubt to the highest standards.”

All 13 passengers were safely disembarked without incident.

Weather at the time of the incident was reported as winds at 11 to 17 mph, 1-foot waves and 11 miles visibility.

Coast Guard searching for missing mariner near Yakobi Island, Alaska
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard is searching for a missing boater in the vicinity of Surge Bay near Yakobi Island, Thursday.

Coast Guard Sector Juneau command center watchstanders received a report that the boater, Gus McConnell, was following a larger boat to Hoonah in a 16-foot white and blue skiff when the operator of the larger vessel lost sight of the skiff. The watchstanders issued an urgent marine information broadcast and launched an Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew to conduct a search of the surrounding area.

The reporting source informed the Coast Guard that McConnell, 21, is unfamiliar with the territory and was last seen wearing blue jeans, boots and an Oregon sweatshirt.

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of the missing boater should contact Coast Guard Sector Juneau at (907) 463-2990.

[Thursday August 7th, 2014 12th  EDITION  5:58 P.M.]

GOP Senate candidates debate rural issues
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A debate among the three major Republican candidates for U.S. Senate Thursday was a battle for rural cred.

Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell, Joe Miller and former state Natural Resources commissioner Dan Sullivan listed bush communities they'd visited and weighed in on issues related to fisheries, voting rights, even honey buckets and outhouses.

Treadwell sought to distinguish himself from the others, noting such things as his work on Arctic and rural development issues. When Miller said he was unfamiliar with a proposal that would allow Alaska Natives to put land in reservation-like trusts, Treadwell said he should get familiar.

Miller questioned whether Treadwell had done enough to address voting integrity as lieutenant governor. And Sullivan took subtle jabs at Treadwell in trying to cast himself as a man of action.

Federal data outlines spending in Alaska, Hawaii
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Remember the tag lines at the end of restaurant commercials that say the food advertised might be higher in Alaska or Hawaii?

New government data proves it is.

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis on Thursday released data showing spending by the average in each of the 50 states from 1997 to 2012, including how much we spend on eating out.

Here's five probably not so-surprising trends from the data as it applies to the nation's only two states not connected to the mainland:

1) It costs more to eat out. Last year, Alaska led the nation for per capita spending for food consumed outside the home. Alaskans spent an average of $3,852 per person, or $15,408 for a family of four to eat at restaurants. Hawaii had the third highest per-capita spending at $3,615.

2) When the weather is mostly perfect and you live on an island, things are good for your pocketbook. The analysis shows Hawaii residents spent the least of anyone in the nation when it comes to expenditures on gasoline or energy goods, at $882 per person. Surprisingly, Alaska — considered to be the nation's coldest state — didn't even crack the top four of highest expenditures. North Dakota led the category, followed by Wyoming, South Dakota and Maine.

3) It's expensive to live in Hawaii. The survey says residents of the 50th state spent $10,002 annually on housing and utilities in 2012, putting it only behind the $11,985 spent by residents of the District of Columbia.

4) Alaskans shell out a lot for health care. The data puts Alaska into third place for highest per capital spending in 2012 for health care, at $8,173, putting the Last Frontier only behind the District of Columbia and Massachusetts for out-of-pocket expenses.

5) Slow growth. Hawaii had the second slowest growth in per capita spending between 2011 and 2012. Newly oil-rich North Dakota led the nation at 9.2 percent growth. Wyoming had the lowest at 1.4 percent growth, and Hawaii was right behind. The national average for states was 3.3 percent.

Local Juneau business, Coppa, derails competition on "Pitch-on-a-Train" contest
As the train rolled on down the track, ideas ranging from commercial Bitcoin applications to drone surveillance technology were tossed around, but it was Marc Wheeler of the Juneau cafe Coppa who derailed the four other entrepreneurs and wooed the judges most with his rhubarb sherbet.

Wheeler says of the rhubarb flavor, "I've been making it for about five years and it's a recipe I developed with my daughter. We started out selling it at the farmers market in Juneau then sold it at Food Truck Friday last summer. It's one of our standard flavors and we want to expand our sells of the sherbet to other Alaskan ice creams as we proposed to the panel of judges in Anchorage."

Wheeler’s pitch to the the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation's "Pitch-on-a-Train" competition included the addition of distinctly Alaska-inspired ice cream flavors such as Coppa's Alaska raspberry, Alaska cherry and Alaskan Brewing Co. Smoked Porter brownie and pecan.

Marc's idea also included dramatically expanding his existing business Coppa, an ice cream shop and caf?on 9th and Glacier owned by Wheeler and his wife, Jessica Paris. They plan to add a mobile location that would meet more than 1 million cruise ship passengers at the Juneau dock each summer.

Search underway for missing man in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A search is being conducted for a man missing in the Chena River in downtown Fairbanks.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports a witness saw two men in the water under the Wendell Street bridge about 2:30 p.m., Thursday, but one was able to get out.

Several firefighters in boats are looking for the other man.

There was no immediate information as to how the men wound up in the river.

Fairbanks Battalion Chief Keith Berrian says a person missing in the river is usually found 100 yards of where contact was lost. He said a person can survive the frigid water for about an hour if they don't have protection.

North Pole teenager missing again
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A North Pole teenager is again missing after being reunited with his family.

Alaska State Troopers say 14-year-old Richard Wellfort went missing Wednesday night, hours after being returned home. He had been missing for a month before he was located earlier Wednesday in Fairbanks.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the youth initially ran away from home June 29.

Troopers and his family used traditional and social media to ask for information on the teen and he was located Wednesday. His parents reported him missing again about 10 p.m. Wednesday.

Douglas "pushes in" New Fire Engine 21
It's the "Push in" ceremony for the new Pierce 4X4 Fire Engine Monday at Station 2, in the Douglas Fire District.

Come and celebrate with the Douglas Community in this long held fire tradition of pushing in the new truck.

Hot Dogs, Soda and Cake will be served. Everyone is invited to help celebrate the arrival of their New Fire Engine 21 Monday night at 6:30.

Eielson leading candidate to host F-35 squadrons
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The Air Force's next generation fighter aircraft could be calling Alaska home.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Eielson (EYE'-el-son) Air Force Base in Fairbanks is the leading candidate to be home to the to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter plane.

Alaska's two U.S. senators, Democrat Mark Begich and Republican Lisa Murkowski, announced Thursday that Eielson is the preferred candidate. Eielson had previously been on a short list of five Pacific bases to house two squadrons.

None of the other four sites was named as an alternative site. A final determination is expected in November 2015.

Murkowski demands Begich ad come down
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Lawyers for Republican U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski's campaign are demanding that a commercial from her Democratic counterpart, U.S. Sen. Mark Begich, touting their cooperation in Washington be immediately pulled.

But Begich's campaign says they are standing by the ad.

The ad has been airing as part of Begich's re-election this year. The ad titled, "Great Team," notes how many times he and Murkowski have voted the same way even though they're from different parties, suggesting their pairing is the best interest for Alaskans.

In a Thursday letter to Begich's campaign, Murkowski claims the ad makes false and deceptive statements, misuses her image without permission and appears to violate federal law for using an official Senate office photo.

The campaign says they licensed the image from The Associated Press.

Young violinist raises money for fire victims
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — An 8-year-old violinist became a street performer to raise money for a family whose home burned in Juneau.

Sophie Nylen raised $1,787.24 in six days and handed it over Saturday to the family of Amber and Lucas Schneider.

Sophie saw the home burning July 25 as she rode home from violin practice. She says she felt bad and wanted to help the family buy a new home.

She played her violin an hour per day for six days in downtown Juneau as her mother, Ildia Nylen, watched.

Ildia Nylen says residents and tourists were generous.

Amber Schneider says she was surprised that such a young girl had raised so much money. She says the family is grateful for the donation.

Judge dismisses charges in Homer sex-assault case
HOMER, Alaska (AP) — A judge has dismissed second-degree sexual assault charges against two Homer brothers accused of assaulting a teenage boy with an object at a local drinking party in September 2012.

Superior Court Judge Carl Bauman dismissed the charges against 22-year-old Anthony Resetarits and 19-year-old Joseph Resetarits on Wednesday. The case had earlier been scheduled for an Aug. 4 trial.

Kenai District Attorney Scot Leaders says he intends to take the case back to a grand jury.

The Homer News reports the brothers were accused of assaulting the boy after he passed out drunk. The boy also had his head and eyebrows shaved, and people wrote on him with markers.

A boy who was 16 at the time also was charged with sexual assault and referred to the juvenile justice system.

Judge rejects bail plan in slain troopers' suspect
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The father of a man accused of shooting and killing two Alaska State Troopers will stay in jail on connected charges.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports a Fairbanks judge Wednesday rejected a plan presented at a bail hearing for Arvin Kangas.

He's charged with evidence tampering and hindering prosecution in the May 1 shootings deaths of Sgt. Scott Johnson and trooper Gabe Rich in Tanana. Kangas' son, Nathanial, faces murder charges in the deaths.

Arvin Kangas' attorney sought release for his client on bail to his older brother until trial. His brother owns a business in Fairbanks, so he would have been home alone during the day.

The judge rejected that plan but said he might approve one that includes a third-party custodian who would be with Kangas 24/7.

Begich won't take public position on referendum
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich says he won't take a public position on the upcoming oil tax referendum.

Begich says thousands of Alaskans worked to get the referendum on the Aug. 19 ballot. While he has a personal opinion, he said he wants to respect the process of voter-initiated measures qualifying for the ballot.

In the referendum, voters will decide whether to keep the oil tax cut approved by lawmakers last year or to repeal it. Voting "yes" signifies support for the repeal.

Many state Democratic lawmakers support the repeal. Democratic gubernatorial candidate Byron Mallott also does.

Alaska's senior U.S. senator, Republican Lisa Murkowski, has said she will vote no.

Begich said whatever is decided, it's important for the oil and gas industry to have consistent, long-term taxing policies.

US airlines running behind schedule so far in 2014
More U.S. flights arrived late in June than the month before, continuing a string of poor performances by the nation's airlines.

The government says that in the first six months of the year, the rate of late flights was the highest since 2008 and cancellations were the highest since 2000.

The U.S. Department of Transportation said Thursday that among airlines reporting figures, 71.8 percent of flights arrived on time in June, down from 76.9 percent the month before and 71.9 percent in June 2013.

Hawaiian Airlines and Alaska Airlines had the best on-time ratings, with Delta leading the biggest carriers. Regional airlines Envoy and ExpressJet and Southwest Airlines were at the bottom of the rankings.

UPDATE:AP-Troopers locate missing North Pole teenager
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A North Pole teenager reported missing for more than a month has been located in Fairbanks.

Alaska State Troopers say 14-year-old Richard Wellfort was found Wednesday.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the youth ran away from home June 29.

Troopers and his family used traditional and social media to ask for information on the teen and he was located Wednesday night.

Troopers say he is alive and well.

Hunter kills musk ox in subsistence hunt near Nome
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A hunter in Nome has killed the first musk ox eligible for harvesting in a local subsistence hunt.

Department of Fish and Game biologist Tony Gorn says the musk ox was an older bull but not the animal that some Nome residents say has been acting aggressively.

Four other permits for harvesting musk ox have been issued.

Gorn tells KNOM-radio that the hunt may be an opportunity to eliminate an immediate nuisance if "problem bulls" are killed.

He says the bigger challenge is a long-term solution to keeping muskoxen out of Nome.

A Nome dog is recovering from a run-in with a musk ox late last week. Monica Gomez says her dog was gored while on a run with her children on Anvil Mountain and needed 13 stitches.

Man fatally stabbed in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Police in Anchorage say a man was fatally stabbed Wednesday night at a residence.

The victim suffered multiple stab wounds and was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Police say they have a suspect in custody. Alcohol is believed to have been a factor.

[Wednesday August 6th, 2014  11TH  EDITION  11:00 P.M.

Museum temporary closure, "Critters" Camp coming up
Although the installation at the Juneau-Douglas City Museum of a new and improved heating, ventilation and air conditioning system has been moving along quickly this summer, the Museum will need to close to the public Friday through Sunday.  The Museum reopens at NOON on Monday, August 11th.

Also next week, August 11-15, the Juneau Explorers Camp for children ages 8 to 11 takes place each day from 8:30 AM to 1:00 PM. This summer’s theme is “Critters”. Children will be learning about a variety of animal species that share our Juneau home such as birds, aquatic insects and bears. Each day involves a field trip in the community including the Gold Rush Sled Dog Tours and the Gastineau Humane Society. Registration is almost full! To guarantee a spot please register by 10 AM on Friday. Visit the Museum’s website,, for more information and registration materials.

Sullivan spends $980K as race enters final stretch
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Dan Sullivan brought in more than $260,000 in July but he spent $980,000 as he and his GOP rivals entered the homestretch toward this month's primary.

Sullivan was the first of the major GOP candidates to provide his fundraising totals for July. As of July 30, Sullivan had just under $1 million on hand.

The other prominent Republicans in the race are Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller.

Incumbent Democratic Sen. Mark Begich reported bringing in about $420,000 in July and spending about $515,000. He had nearly $2.1 million available. Begich faces no real opposition in his party's primary on Aug. 19.

2 people reported injured in Mat-Su carriage crash
Alaska State Troopers say they responded to a report of two people being ejected from a horse-drawn carriage.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports the accident happened near the reindeer farm near Palmer on Wednesday afternoon.

Troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters says initial reports indicate two people have been injured and a medical helicopter from Anchorage responded.

Troopers seek help in locating runaway teen
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers are seeking the public's help in their search for a 14-year-old runaway boy who has been missing for more than a month.

Troopers say no one has reported seeing Richard Wellfort since he ran away from his North Pole home June 29.

Efforts by troopers and family to locate the boy have been unsuccessful.

Troopers say the boy also has been known to go by the name of Andrew Cullens.

The boy is 5-feet-6 inches tall, has brown hair and green eyes, and weighs 108 pounds. He was last seen wearing camouflage shorts, a yellow Aeropostale T-shirt and flip-flops.

Juneau police arrest tour boat captain for DUI
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The captain of a tourist boat with 13 passengers onboard has been arrested after failing a sobriety test.

Juneau police say 67-year-old Lawrence O. Dupler later provided breath samples showing a blood-alcohol content level of .115. The legal limit is 0.08.

He's been jailed on $1,500 bail after his arrest about noon Wednesday. Online court records didn't list charges or an attorney.

Juneau Police Sgt. Chris Gifford says the U.S. Coast Guard received a tip from someone onboard the boat.

The Coast Guard detained Dupler outside Auke Bay after making contact. He had been piloting a 52-foot tour boat, which also had two other crew members aboard.

Gifford said police aren't releasing the name of the tour company.

Crimestoppers tip leads Anchorage police to missing 4 month old and his mother
Police say 30 year old Erica Gibbs had a warrant for her arrest.

On july 22nd, officers were called to a residence on the 4000 block of San Roberto Avenue to assist Office of Children's Services employees in taking emergency custody of 4 month old Dominik Gibbs. Erica Gibbs left the residence with the child before officers arrived. Police soon found her, but she was uncooperative and would not provide information on the child's whereabouts.

Tuesday of this week, Crimestoppers received the tip and police located Erica Gibbs and the child in an East Anchorage apartment. Gibbs is charged with second degree custodial interference and endangering the life of a child.

Chugiak man charged with sexual assault of teen
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 33-year-old Chugiak man has been charged with sexually assaulting and strangling a 15-year-old girl.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports Ralph Barenz II is being held at the Mat-Su Pretrial Facility without bail.

An arraignment hearing was scheduled in Palmer later Wednesday.

The assault occurred in the Jim Creek area near the Knik River by Butte. The child-abuse investigation unit was called at 4:45 a.m. Tuesday to report the sexual assault. Few other details have been released.

Filing for Assembly and School Board opens Friday
The filing period for the City & Borough of Juneau Assembly and School Board opens Friday,
August 8, 2014, at 8:00 a.m. Voters will elect three Assemblymembers and two School Board
members at the October 7, 2014 Regular Municipal Election. Filing for the seats closes Monday,
August 18, 2014 at 4:30 p.m.

Offices to be filled (elected by the voters at-large):

One (1) Area-wide Assemblymember - 3 year term
One (1) District One Assemblymember - 3 year term
One (1) District Two Assemblymember - 3 year term
Two (2) School Board Members - 3 year terms

Candidates for office must be qualified voters of the City and Borough of Juneau:
(1) Qualified to vote in State elections;
(2) A resident of the municipality for at least thirty days immediately preceding the
(3) Registered to vote in state elections at a residence address within the municipality at
least thirty days before the municipal election at which the person seeks to vote; and
(4) Not disqualified under Article V of the Alaska Constitution.
In addition, candidates for Assembly must be a resident of CBJ for at least one year
immediately preceding election to office.
Also, candidates for Assembly District 1 and District 2 seats must reside in the district from
which elected or appointed at the time of the Assemblymember's election or appointment
Anyone needing further information should contact the Clerk’s Office at 586-5278 or via e-mail at

Nominating Petitions are now available in the Municipal Clerk’s office in City Hall and on line at:

Territorial Guard honor wall dedicated in Bethel
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — A wall of honor celebrating the Alaska Territorial Guard has been completed at Bethel's Alaska Territorial Guard Memorial Park.

Local organizers and state military leaders formally dedicated the wall Friday at the veterans cemetery.

KYUK says the wall lists the names of 1,435 ATG members who served from 31 Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta villages. The largely Native militia was formed to protect the territory of Alaska during World War II.

ATG Park Committee member Buck Bukowski says the recognition is overdue.

The 6,000-member ATG was formed in 1942 after Japan's attack of Pearl Harbor and points along Alaska's Aleutian Islands. It disbanded with little fanfare in March 1947, almost two years after the war ended.

ATG members were formally recognized 10 years ago by the Army as U.S. as military veterans.

Troopers search for 14-year-old boy
Alaska State Troopers are asking for the public’s help in locating a 14-year-old boy who hasn’t been seen since he ran away from his North Pole home on June 29.

Efforts by family and troopers to find Richard Wellfort since then have been unsuccessful. No one has reportedly seen Wellfort nor had any known communication with him since June 29.

Wellfort is described as 5-feet-6-inches tall, weighing 108 pounds with brown hair and green eyes. He was wearing a yellow Aeropostale T-shirt, camouflage shorts and flip flops when he was last seen by family.

He is also known to go by the name Andrew Cullens. Anyone with information about his whereabouts can call Alaska State Troopers at (907)451-5100.

Man accused of shooting gun while driving
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A 38-year-old Fairbanks driver is accused of shooting a gun from his moving truck to relieve stress.

Craig Logan Lant is charged with weapons misconduct, reckless driving and reckless endangerment.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner says Lant was arrested Friday after a driver reported seeing a man in an oncoming lane shoot a gun from the window of a pickup.

The witness told Alaska State Troopers the man with the gun was driving along the middle of the road and shot into some trees. The witness honked and said the truck swerved to the correct side of the roadway.

Troopers say Lant told them he knew shooting wasn't a good idea, but was "just letting out a bit of steam after work."

Polls favor Sullivan
A pair of polls released Tuesday show Republican U.S. Senate candidate Dan Sullivan maintaining a single-digit lead over his closest challenger in the Aug. 19 GOP primary.

A poll released by the Democratic-leaning firm Public Policy Polling showed former Department of Natural Resources Commissioner Sullivan leading Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell 35 percent to 29 percent, with 20 percent supporting Fairbanks attorney Joe Miller and 14 percent of the 337 Republican primary voters surveyed still undecided.

The second poll showed Sullivan leading Treadwell 35 percent to 27 percent, with Miller getting 16 percent. That poll was conducted by the Oregon-based Moore Information, which works for Sullivan’s campaign, but the poll was not commissioned by a candidate or third-party group involved in the U.S. Senate race.

Live-fire exercise set at Fort Wainwright
FORT WAINWRIGHT, Alaska (AP) — A live-fire exercise is planned Thursday at Fort Wainwright.

Officials say soldiers will conduct the exercise during the day at the Small Arms Complex off the Richardson Highway.

Soldiers will train with hand grenades and demolitions.

Authorities say local residents may feel vibrations and hear explosions during the exercise.

[Tuesday August 5th, 2014  16TH  EDITION  8:44 P.M.]

Update: Middle school explosion and vandalism
Juneau Police say they have identified the 5 juveniles who caused a small explosion with aerosol cans behind Dzantiki Heeni Middle School and the vandalism of a vending machine and school window on July 26th.

Parents of the juveniles contacted JPD to report that their children might have been involved with the incident.

The five male juveniles were the following ages: 16, 10, 8, 7, and 6.

Interviews with the children have either occurred, or are pending.

Mammogram Van schedule for August
Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death (after lung cancer) among Alaskan women.

The SouthEast Regional Health Consortium’s WISEWOMAN Women’s Health Program in partnership with the Breast Cancer Detection Center announce that the mobile mammography van visits Klawock today through Friday, August 8th, Hoonah from Tuesday, August 12th through Friday, August 15th, Skagway on Monday, August 18th, and Haines on Wednesday August 20th through Monday, August 25th.

SEARHC Health Promotion Division Director, Martha Pearson said, "Last year, over 500 women received a mammogram in their home community, through the mobile mammography program.” The mobile mammogram van makes regular mammography screening services available to women who live in communities where they are not available year round. The van traveled to Angoon, Haines, and Kake this spring.

Free clinical breast exams, mammograms, Pap tests and cardiovascular screenings are provided for all women ages 40 and older who meet income and insurance guidelines.

For more information contact your local clinic, call the SEARHC WISEWOMAN Women’s Health Program in Sitka at 966-8782 (or 1-888-388-8782, toll-free in Alaska), or e-mail, or visit

Juneau vessel capsizes near Valdez
A vessel, homeported in Juneau, capsized near Valdez Monday.

The Auriga was fishing in the vicinity of Eaglek Bay when a storm approached from the southeast, causing a large wave that caused the vessel to capsize.

The mariners climbed aboard the vessel’s skiff and were rescued by nearby good Samaritan fishing vessel Cornelia Marie and taken to Port Valdez.

The Auriga remained partially submerged Tuesday in the vicinity of Unakwik Inlet.

The vessel has a fuel capacity of 200 gallons and was carrying approximately 18,000 pounds of fish.

Lt. Ben Bauman with the Coast Guard says the owner contracted commercial response services for fuel removal and salvage.

The cause is under investigation. No injuries were reported.

UPDATE: Coast Guard locates overdue boaters near Prince William Sound, Alaska
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard located three boaters reported overdue near Prince William Sound, Tuesday morning.

A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew forward deployed in Cordova located the missing boaters anchored in Lower Passage on the north side of Knight Island. The mariners reported the vessel had engine problems and were unable to return as planned.

The crew of Coast Guard Cutter Long Island remained with the vessel to assess the condition of the mariners and vessel. There were no reported injuries.

Anchorage man charged in several rapes
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 35-year-old Anchorage man has been charged in the rapes of several women.

Anchorage police say in a release that Clifford Lee is being held on two bonds totaling $1.25 million and had a court appearance scheduled later Tuesday.

Police say starting in late June and continuing for five weeks, five women reported being sexually assaulted by a man after accepting a ride. Police say the man sometimes used a stun gun.

Authorities say he preyed on women who were drunk and alone in midtown or downtown. Police say he offered rides, took them to South Anchorage and raped them before dropping them off.

One victim was able to identify the residence where she was raped, and police developed leads from there. He faces 10 counts of sexual assault.

Murkowski Announces Public Schedule for August
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski has announced public visits for Valdez, Fairbanks, Sitka, Haines, Ketchikan, Coffman Cove, Anchorage, and Kodiak during August.

In Valdez, Senator Murkowski plans to meet with city officials, tour the Petro Star Refinery and Alyeska Pipeline Services Company, visit the Advocates for Victims of Violence facility, and tour the Valdez Food Bank.
WHAT: Community Reception
WHEN: Monday, August 4, 2014; 12:30-1:45 p.m.
WHERE: Civic Center
110 Clifton Drive

In Fairbanks, Senator Murkowski will meet with women in the mining industry to talk about current issues and will also give remarks at the annual TCC Alaska Tribal Court Conference.
WHAT: Tanana River Crossing Ribbon Cutting
WHEN: Tuesday, August 5, 2014; 12:00-1:30 p.m.
WHERE: Tom Bear Trail Road
Tanana River, AK
WHAT: Tanana Valley Fair
WHEN: Tuesday, August 5, 2014; 3:30-6:00 p.m.
WHERE: Tanana Valley Fairgrounds

Senator Murkowski will give a Washington update to Sitka’s Chamber of Commerce, visit the Blue Lake Dam Project, and tour the Baranof Island Brewing Company.
WHAT: Remarks at Sitka Chamber of Commerce
WHEN: Wednesday, August 6, 2014; 12:00-1:00 p.m.
WHERE: Westmark Sitka Hotel
330 Seward Street

In Haines, Senator Murkowski plans to tour the new Veterans facility, the Harbor Expansion Project, the Jilkaat Kwaan Cultural Heritage Center, and the Haines Brewing Company.
WHAT: Tour of Soboleff-McRae Veterans Village and Wellness Center
WHEN: Thursday, August 7, 2014; 10:00-11:00 a.m.
WHERE: Soboleff-McRae Veterans Village and Wellness Center
Haines, AK
WHAT: Community Meet and Greet Potluck
WHEN: Thursday, August 7, 2014; 11:45-1:00 p.m.
WHERE: Chilkat Center Lobby
1 Theater Drive

In Ketchikan, Senator Murkowski will tour Trident Seafoods as well as meet with Alaska Forest Association leaders and attend the community dinner to help raise funds for breast cancer research. She will also tour the Coast Guard Station Ketchikan on 8-13.
WHEN: Friday, August 8, 2014; 1:30-2:30 p.m.
WHAT: Media Availability
1101 Copper Ridge Lane

In Coffman Cove, Senator Murkowski will tour the Canoe Lagoon Oyster Company before heading out to join in the festivities at the Coffman Cove Arts and Seafood Festival.
WHAT: Coffman Cove Arts and Seafood Festival
WHEN: Saturday, August 9, 2014; 1:00-3:00 p.m.
WHERE: Coffman Cove, AK
WHAT: Coast Guard Foundation Alaska Awards Dinner
WHEN: Wednesday, August 13, 2014; 6:00-8:00 p.m.
WHERE: Hotel Captain Cook
939 West 5th Avenue

In Kodiak, Senator Murkowski will meet with United States Coast Guard personnel and tour the North Pacific Regional Fisheries Training Center.
WHAT: USCG Housing Unit Ribbon Cutting
WHEN: Thursday, August 14, 2014; 1:45-2:30 p.m.
WHERE: Base Kodiak

Kenai borough mayor vetoes bed tax vote
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — The mayor of the Kenai Peninsula Borough has vetoed a measure from going to voters.

Voters were to have decided whether to put a 3 percent tax on motel beds across the borough. But Mayor Mike Navarre vetoed the measure Monday.

The Peninsula Clarion reports Navarre said he doesn't like dedicated taxes. Plus he said he heard complaints from people in Homer that they would be stuck with the tax decided by others in the borough.

He says a better approach would be for the assembly to allow cities to implement a local bed tax by voter approval.

The tax would have brought in $1.6 million to fund tourism marketing.

No injuries after fishing boat grounds near Hoonah
HOONAH, Alaska (AP) — A 43-foot fishing boat ran aground in southeast Alaska early Tuesday morning after it lost its GPS system.

Alaska State Troopers say the Stardust grounded on Sisters Island in Icy Straits, near Hoonah.

Wildlife troopers in Hoonah responded and stayed on-scene until the boat was refloated about 5 a.m. by the incoming tide. The U.S. Coast Guard escorted the Stardust to Juneau.

Troopers say the captain of the Stardust, 38-year-old Kristopher Foster of Sitka, wasn't injured in the grounding.

Search resumes for missing Missouri man in Alaska
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The search for a 71-year-old Missouri man has entered its third day with dozens of people participating.

KTUU reports the search for Jerry Warner resumed Tuesday morning.

He reportedly left a recreational vehicle he and his girlfriend parked at the Willow Creek Resort, about 50 miles north of Anchorage, on Sunday for a solo fishing trip on Willow Creek.

He was carrying a fishing pole and a walking stick, but no cellphone, weapon and little or no food.

An Alaska State Troopers helicopter provided an aerial search Monday, and eight dog teams were deployed in in the area. About 40 people took part, and the Matanuska-Susitna Borough provided boats for the search.

Begich releases 1st TV ad taking aim at Treadwell
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich has released a new ad, seeking to draw a contrast between him and two of his Republican rivals on women's issues.

It is the first TV ad from Begich to include Republican Mead Treadwell, who is vying against Dan Sullivan and Joe Miller for his party's nomination in the Aug. 19 primary. The ad also singles out Sullivan, who has been a favorite target for a pro-Begich super PAC the last few months, but it doesn't mention Miller. Begich spokesman Max Croes said voters are familiar with Miller's views from his unsuccessful U.S. Senate bid in 2010.

The ad touches on the candidates' positions on abortion and support for defunding Planned Parenthood.

Begich's campaign, in recent weeks, has stepped up its criticism of Treadwell.

Coast Guard searching for overdue boaters in Prince William Sound, Alaska
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard is searching for three missing boaters who were reported overdue in the vicinity of Prince William Sound, Tuesday morning.

Coast Guard Sector Anchorage command center watchstanders received an overdue report from Alaska State Troopers in Soldotna that three boaters on a white 24-foot Bayliner with a gray top had not returned from a two-day fishing trip that started Sunday morning.

The vessel was scheduled to return by midnight Monday evening. Coast Guard Cutter Long Island was launched from Valdez, and a Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew forward deployed in Cordova was diverted from another incident to aid in the search.

The cutter and Jayhawk crew arrived on scene early Tuesday morning and began searching for the three missing people.

A Coast Guard Station Valdez 45-foot Response Boat – Medium was also launched to assist in the search.

A family friend informed the Coast Guard that the operator of the Bayliner has flares, a 7-foot orange Zodiac inflatable boat and extra gas onboard.

Missing are 40 year-old John Dimmick  28 year-old Mark Valdez, and 25 year-old Cory Bicchinella, from Anchorage.

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of the missing boaters should contact Sector Anchorage at (907) 428-4100.

Woman says she killed musk ox to protect dog
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A Nome woman says she killed a musk ox last month to protect her dog.

Diana Adams initially was given a citation for killing a musk ox out of season. But a spokeswoman for the Alaska State Troopers said that was changed to a written warning after consultation between the wildlife troopers, local district attorney's office and the state Department of Fish and Game.

On July 17, Adams found a musk ox in her backyard.

She told KNOM she yelled and fired a warning shot. She said when she saw one walk to her dog pen, and dip its head in the way she's seen them do in the past before they attack, she shot it.

Adams reported the incident. The meat was donated to a senior center.

Moroccan to swim from Alaska to Russia
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 27-year-old man is headed to the Bering Strait as part of his goal to be the first Moroccan to swim between every continent.

KTVA reports Hassan Baraka plans to swim three miles from Little Diomede Island, Alaska, to Big Diomede Island, Russia, Thursday.

However, he said during a practice swim in Anchorage Monday that the Russian government hadn't yet given permission for him to come ashore.

There is a backup plan if he doesn't get the OK. Instead, he'll swim to Little Diomede from the international dateline.

Previous swims have taken him from Morocco to Spain and the Bosporus Strait, separating Europe from Asia.

The swim is intended to bring awareness to coastal issues, and he wants to show the world that borders don't have to divide people.

Ketchikan proposes increases on airport fees
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — Fees could be going up at the Ketchikan airport.

KRBD reports the Ketchikan Gateway Borough on Monday had the first reading of an ordinance to raise airport fees.

Those include raising the price of the ferry ride to the airport by a dollar, to $6.

Other increases include hiking the rate for a floatplane stall from $61 a month to $73, increasing landing fees for airplanes and charging motorcycle and scooters the same rate as passenger cars on the Gravina side.

The Ketchikan Daily News says the airport operates with a year deficit that runs anywhere from $380,000 to $435,000. That's even on top of an annual $400,000 subsidy from the state.

The increases on fees, if approved at a second reading, would drop that deficit to $285,000 or less.

Juneau man faces assault charges with bow, arrow
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A 23-year-old Juneau man faces felony assault charges after allegedly pointing a bow and arrow at an Alaska Native couple.

Wesley J. Bowman is due in court later today (Tuesday).

Police Lt. David Campbell says before Bowman pointed the bow and arrow at the couple, he allegedly said something like: "Stop doing that, Native."

Campbell says it wasn't clear what he wanted the couple to stop doing, or if the Saturday incident was racially motivated. Police do say alcohol was a factor.

During an Alaska Native Celebration in June, a man yelled racial epithets at the crowd. A suspect has been identified, but no charges have been filed in that incident.

Kenai superintendent resigns for new UA position
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — The superintendent of the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District has submitted his resignation.

The Peninsula Clarion reports Steve Atwater's resignation is effective Dec. 1.

Atwater will become the associate vice president for K-12 outreach at the University of Alaska, a newly created position.

Atwater, who was Alaska's Superintendent of the Year in 2013, came to Kenai six years ago from the Lake and Peninsula School District in King Salmon.

The board says it has three options to replace Atwater: conduct a national search for a new hire, appoint a superintendent from internal or external candidates or hire an interim superintendent to fill out the rest of the school year after Atwater leaves.

Ribbon-cutting ceremony planned for new bridge
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A ribbon-cutting ceremony is planned for the longest bridge in Alaska.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports a ceremony and barbecue will accompany the ceremony at noon Tuesday in Salcha ( SAL CHUH).

The 3,300-foot railroad bridge is over the Tanana River, and is part of a plan to eventually provide a rail link between Fairbanks and military ground south of Delta Junction. That will require another 80 miles of rail, which hasn't been approved yet.

Work on the $188 million Salcha project began three years ago this month. The U.S. Department of Defense paid $104 million of the cost with the state picking up the remainder.

Salcha, with a population of just over 1,000 people, is located about 35 miles southeast of Fairbanks on the Richardson Highway.

Treadwell, Miller trade jabs at debate
EAGLE RIVER, Alaska (AP) — It was a scrappier version of Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell who took the stage Monday at a Republican U.S. Senate debate. He went toe-to-toe with Joe Miller at times, other times taking the brunt of Miller's jabs at establishment Republicans along with Dan Sullivan.

For Treadwell, it was his chance to shine before conservative voters at the social issues debate hosted by the Alaska Family Council as he tries to woo voters from the tea party favorite Miller and from Sullivan.

Both Sullivan and Treadwell say they would work to bring the party together if they lose.

But Miller says if the party elects a go-along Republican, they will lose the general election to U.S. Sen. Mark Begich.

EPA asks judge to toss Pebble lawsuit
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is asking a federal judge to dismiss as premature a lawsuit by the group behind the proposed Pebble Mine.

In a court filing, attorneys for the EPA say the agency has not made a final determination yet on potential restrictions on development on the Pebble deposit.

The Pebble Limited Partnership sued EPA earlier this year, alleging the agency had exceeded its authority by invoking a process through which it could restrict or prohibit development of the Pebble deposit before the project has gone through permitting.

Public comment is currently being taken on restrictions proposed by EPA that would not ban mining of the deposit but would essentially block the type of project the mine's owners have publicly discussed.

[Monday August 4th, 2014  13TH  EDITION  6:06 P.M.]

Spokesman: 5 immigrant children sent to Alaska
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A spokesman for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says five unaccompanied immigrant children have been sent to Alaska.

Kenneth Wolfe said the children were sent to sponsors in Alaska between Jan. 1 and July 7. He did not respond to additional questions sent by email. The voicemail box on his cell phone was full.

This year, the federal government has placed as many as 30,000 minors who have crossed the border illegally with sponsors nationwide.

Sharon Leighow is a spokeswoman for Gov. Sean Parnell. She said a Parnell aide spoke with Susan Johnson, the department's regional director.

Leighow said Johnson would not provide the state with details such as the communities in which the children were living or the relationships between the children and their sponsors.

Gov signs bill on security for court challenges
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell has signed legislation that will require those seeking to stop certain permitted projects to post a security.

The bill's sponsor, Chickaloon Rep. Eric Feige, said the measure is aimed at rooting out frivolous lawsuits.

But the executive director of the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council, Malena Marvin, said it violates citizens' rights to due process and expects it to be challenged in court.

The security would be in an amount a judge deems proper for costs or damages an industrial operation may incur if it were "wrongfully enjoined or restrained." Industrial operations include construction, timber and oil and gas development activities.

The security requirement would not apply if the activity being challenged was authorized through a program for which the state has assumed primacy from the federal government.

Begich reports raising about $420K in July
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Mark Begich reported bringing in about $420,000 toward his re-election bid in July.

During that same period, the Democrat spent about $515,000. Begich reported having just under $2.1 million on hand, as of July 30.

The first-term incumbent is in the midst of what is expected to be a hotly contested race. Republicans see Alaska as key to their efforts to win back control of the Senate.

Begich isn't expected to face much of a fight in the Aug. 19 primary. His lone Democratic challenger is William Bryk, who lives in New York.

The major Republican candidates facing off in the GOP primary are Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell, Joe Miller and former state Natural Resources commissioner Dan Sullivan.

Draft Southeast Alaska Transportation Plan public meeting in Juneau Wednesday
The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities will host a series of public meetings during August and September to gather public comment on the Draft Southeast Alaska Transportation Plan (SATP).

DOT spokesman, Jeremy Woodrow says the first meeting will be in Juneau this Wednesday, August 6th, at Centennial Hall, in the Hickel Room. "From 4:30 until 6:30 PM, we'll have an open house where we will present the Southeast Alaska Transportation Plan. From 6:30 - 8:30 PM, we will have a public meeting where we will present the plan in a power point overview and discuss the project's plan for Juneau and the greater area of Southeast Alaska."

Recommended actions in the draft plan include:
-Maintenance and operation of existing ferries
-Retirement of the three original mainline ferries over the next 20 years
-Construction of one or two new mainline ferries
-Initiation of shuttle ferry service in upper Lynn Canal

The plan is available for review online at Feedback may also be submitted online.

Meetings are planned for Wednesday August 13th in Angoon and Petersburg, Wednesday August 20th in Ketchikan and Sitka, Monday August 25th in Kake, Tuesday September 9th in Skagway and Wednesday September 10th in Haines.

Juneau has second wettest July on record, double the rain from last July
It sure was a wet July in Juneau. It rained almost every day last month.

Hydrologist Aaron Jacobs with the National Weather Service in Juneau says July precipitation at the Juneau International Airport came in as the second wettest on record during the 72 years of keeping climatological records.

The total for July was 8.26 inches. The wettest July on record was in 1997 with 10.63 inches of rain.

Jacobs said, "It rained almost every single day except for five days."

One day's rainfall, July 11th, exceeded one inch. Juneau also doubled the amount of precipitation this July compared with July of last year.

Woman in fatal Juneau fire 56-year-old grandmother
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A woman who died in a residential fire in Juneau was a 56-year-old grandmother.

Authorities are investigating the cause of the Lemon Creek Road fire that broke out Friday in a trailer home. Doris Emanoff was found unresponsive in a bedroom and later pronounced dead at Bartlett Hospital.

Authorities also are investigating the cause of Emanoff's death.

A man was arrested for disorderly conduct at the scene of the fire after he reportedly wouldn't immediately leave the burning home, where police had responded to a reported disturbance 45 minutes before the blaze.

Father, daughter inducted into ASAA Hall of Fame
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — This year's Alaska School Activities Association Hall of Fame induction ceremony was a family affair for two members.

KTVA reports former Ninilchik High School girls basketball coach Dan Leman and his daughter, Whitney Leman Schollenberg, were among the 11 inducted Sunday night.

Dan Leman coached the Wolverines for 18 seasons, from 1991 to 2008. A 98-game winning streaking during that time helped him end with a record of 373-36.

He led the team to five consecutive 2A state championships from 2000-2004. His daughter played on the first four of those championship teams, and earned Player of the Year honors three times.

He says he was amazed to see what his daughter did on the basketball court, adding he probably had a better seat than most to watch her accomplishments.

Draft: Lawmakers can tout position on referendum
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A draft advisory opinion finds that lawmakers are allowed to use to state resources, like their legislative websites, to make known their positions on the upcoming oil tax referendum.

The draft opinion from staff for the Alaska Public Offices Commission points to a legislative ethics committee decision that found that action to support or oppose an initiative was related to the duties of lawmakers. The ethics committee noted that lawmakers often are asked to take a stand on public issues.

The draft opinion, however, found that activities that involved state resources should be reported and that communications should include a "paid for" tag.

If the commission adopts the draft opinion, staff recommends the reporting and identifying requirements apply to future activities.

A commission meeting is scheduled for Thursday.

Southeast Alaska village sues over non-rural status
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — The southeast Alaska village of Saxman is suing federal officials over the Federal Subsistence Board's 2007 decision to designate the Tlingit community as non-rural.

The lawsuit was filed July 25 against officials of the subsistence board and U.S. Interior and Agriculture departments.

KRBD says the complaint calls the decision and criteria used to reach it "arbitrary and capricious," and seeks to invalidate the subsistence board's decision.

The plaintiffs say Saxman residents have continually engaged in traditional subsistence gathering since the community was first settled in the late 1800s. They say the U.S. government considered the village rural, at least for subsistence purposes, until 2007.

A request for comment from government representatives was not immediately returned Monday.

Saxman is a community of about 410 located 2 miles south of Ketchikan.

Tipster leads police to artwork reported missing
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A tipster has helped lead police to an Alaska Native art piece reported missing from the Juneau International Airport.

Detective Nick Garza said a woman called police Friday after reading about the silkscreen cedar painting. The artwork, representing the Tlingit Eagle clan, was on loan to the airport and reported missing in late July.

Garza said the woman told police a man had shown the piece to her and others in an attempt to determine its worth.

Garza says the man said he found the piece in the trees along a trail near the airport. Garza said he handed it over and said he was not a thief.

The case was sent to the district attorney's office for consideration of possible charges.

Absentee voting begins today
Absentee ballots for the Primary Election are available beginning today (August 4th). You can also get a ballot by mail or electronically.

If you can’t go to the polls due to age, illness or disability, ask a friend to get a special needs ballot for you.

For more information, call Division of Elections or go to

21 musher sign up for 2015 Yukon Quest
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — It could be very crowded on the trail when the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race is staged this winter.

The Fairbanks daily News-Miner reports 21 mushers signed up Saturday during the opening day of registration at the Yukon Quest cabin in Fairbanks.

Registrations will be accepted up until Jan. 2, but the number of mushers signed up already has outnumbered the 18 who competed in last year's race.

The 2015 race will start Feb. 7 in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, and end in Fairbanks.

Rob Cooke of Whitehorse was the first musher to sign up Saturday, followed by defending champion Allen Moore.

Brent Sass, who led for most of last year's race before an injury forced him to scratch, is also in the race.

Doctor treats injured hiker on trail
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a 21-year-old Anchorage man injured himself with a hatchet while hiking, then happened upon a doctor on the trail who was able to treat him.

Troopers say Connor Michael injured himself on the Crow Pass trail Saturday.

KTUU-TV reports that a doctor who saw the injured hiker was able to offer medical assistance to him.

The doctor, whose name was not released, was carrying a satellite communications device and called for help.

Emergency responders arrived in the area and transported Michael to a hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries.

Alaska troopers search for missing Missouri man
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers are searching for a 71-year-old Missouri man who went missing after he headed out to go fishing by himself.

KTUU-TV reports the search for Jerry Warner began Sunday in the area of Willow Creek near milepost 70 of the Parks Highway.

Troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen says Warner and his wife have been visiting Alaska in their RV. Ipsen says Warner is an avid outdoorsman.

Theresa Dean at the Willow Creek Resort says troopers briefly suspended their search overnight but picked it up again Monday.

No hometown for Warner was immediately available.

Sarah Palin to headline political talk in Phoenix
PHOENIX (AP) — Sarah Palin will be the headline speaker at a conservative talk radio station's event in Phoenix next month.

KKNT-AM says the former Alaska governor will give remarks at a discussion about this year's election races and other issues at Grand Canyon University Arena on Sept. 4.

Other speakers scheduled to attend the "United We Stand" event include comedian Paul Rodriguez and author Dinesh D'Souza.

The radio station, also known as 960 The Patriot, says the ticketed event will focus on finding common dialogue between tea party supporters, moderates and libertarians.

Topics that will be addressed include health care, national security and energy independence.

The event is scheduled for 7 p.m.

Palin will participate in a VIP meet-and-greet before the event.

[Sunday August 3rd, 2014  5th EDITION  9:20 P.M.]

Man medevaced from fishing vessel near Kodiak
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard medevaced an ailing 69-year-old man from the 50-foot fishing vessel Sierra Seas near Village Islands off Kodiak, Sunday.

The 17th District command center in Juneau received the report from Kodiak Police Department that the man was suffering acute stomach pains from pre-existing medical conditions and needed assistance. The duty flight surgeon recommended medevac and the helicopter crew was dispatched to the scene.

An Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew landed on a nearby beach where the mariner and his wife were picked up for transport to awaiting emergency medical services in Kodiak.

46th Annual Southeast Alaska State Fair
Mandy Massey, Juneau Radio Center Sales Manager, visited the Haines fair Saturday, "We started the day off with sunny skies and a parade with Senator Dennis Egan as Grand Marshall. There are loads of people out here enjoying activities like the Ferris wheel, two live music bands, and the ax throwing & log rolling competitions. There are over 10 food vendors offering delicious items like burgers, sushi, Indian tacos and ice cream."

Senator Egan is seen smiling in the red car below.

(Pictures by Mandy Massey)

Woman runs into building, causes thousands in damage
A 73 year old female drove her vehicle into a building causing significant damage Friday morning around 10:35.

According to a bulletin from the Juneau Police Department, damage to the building at 1731 Ralphs Way is estimated at approximately $20,000-30,000.00 dollars. The woman's vehicle sustained approximately $1,500.00 in damages.

The website lists the building as being occupied by Alaska Communications. Police are calling the incident an accident.

Couple threatened downtown with bow and arrow, Bowman arrested
Juneau Police say a man with the last name Bowman was arrested Saturday for threatening a couple with a bow and arrow after uttering a racial slur at them.

The report came into JPD Saturday afternoon around 3:38. Officers responded to the area of Willoughby Ave. and Whittier St. and found a man with a compound bow and several arrows in the lot off of Willoughby Avenue, near Village Street.

Two victims were identified and interviewed; a 35 year-old man and a 35 year-old woman. They said a man they did not know approached them and made a negative racial comment directed at them. The suspect, later identified as 23 year-old Wesley J. Bowman, walked away from them to a distance of about ten feet, before turning and raising the bow and drawing back the arrow as he pointed it in their direction.

No one was injured in this incident. Bowman was arrested and lodged at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center on two counts of Assault in the Third Degree, a class C felony.

Alcohol was a factor in this incident.

Update: Fatal fire Friday in Lemon Creek
Capital City Fire Rescue responded to 1913 Lemon Creek Road for a residential structure fire with reports of two people trapped inside. Upon arrival Friday afternoon around 5:46 PM, fire personnel found a single story, single family mobile home with heavy smoke visible from the exterior.

Fire personnel quickly gained entry into the home and found heavy smoke at the floor level with intense heat. Crews worked simultaneously extinguishing the fire and searching for victims. There was one victim found, a 56 year old female who was quickly brought out of the home and taken to Bartlett Regional Hospital by ambulance where she was declared deceased. Doris J. Emanoff is listed online as a resident of the mobile home. There was only one victim, all others were accounted for.  

A man at the scene causing a disturbance was arrested by Juneau Police at 6:01 PM Friday, shortly after emergency personnel responded to the fire. 59 year old George Swain failed to leave the scene after being lawfully order to do so by multiple police officers. George Swain was arrested for Disorderly Conduct and lodged on $500.00 bail at Lemon Creek Correctional Center. Reports show alcohol was a factor in his arrest.

The cause of the fire and the cause of the death have not been determined at this time.

Anyone with photos or video of this fire is strongly encouraged to contact the fire marshal's office at 586-0260.

Oral history being recorded from the Upper Kobuk
NOME, Alaska (AP) — For the first time, centuries-old fishing knowledge from the Upper Kobuk River is being recorded.

"The knowledge that is in us, in our brains, has not ever been written," said Virginia Commack, tribe manager for the Native Village of Ambler, "not even the elders, we learned it from, which is like 500 plus years old. I'd say it's a 1,000 or more years knowledge that we've never been able to write down to pass onto our children."

Commack said the transcriptions will contain holistic traditional fishing knowledge: how to harvest and process fish, how to observe fish habitats and populations, and how to safeguard the Upper Kobuk.

"Our people used to be the real stewards of the land and the waters," said Commack. "They used to teach us how to keep everything healthy, from the smallest fish to the largest fish, from the smallest animal to the largest animal. That kind of stuff has never been written."

The documents will also include decades of fish surveys and inventories collected by the Ambler community and the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Commack said all the information will be reviewed by the community's elders and then distributed to the youth in the form of CDs.

This initiative is being funded by a $39,942 grant from the National Park Service Historic Preservation Fund.

"The National Parks Service distributes these grants to Indian tribes, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiian organizations to help them preserve significant tribal places, culture, and tradition," said park service spokesman Mike Litterst.

For Ambler, Commack said, the traditions recorded through the grant will be used to protect fishing hot spots and uphold the wellbeing of the river.

"We need to know the health of the fish," Commack explained, "because it's one of the main diets of our people, besides the caribou, the moose, the bear, and other animals that we eat. It's food on our table. It's survival of our people, physically. "

Commack said fish, especially sheefish and salmon, can compose up to 75 percent of the community's diet when land harvests are poor. And Commack said, in Ambler, where a quart of milk costs $5, maintaining subsistence resources stretches beyond cultural preservation to economic necessity.

"A lot of us cannot afford even a whole month just eating off of the local stores," said Commack. "It's very expensive up here. And not only that, we're used to eating the fish, the meat, the caribou, the seasonal food that we get in our area. We're used to those, and our diet has to continue that way to be physically healthy."

Commack said the goal of the project is to preserve subsistence resources beyond seven future generations.

State buys land for Interior veterans' cemetery
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — After years of searching and one false start, the state has purchased land it says will become the location for the Interior's first veterans' cemetery.

The Alaska Department of Military and Veterans Affairs announced Thursday it has purchased 320 acres of land in Fox. The land is located about two miles down Goldstream Road on the west side of the trans-Alaska oil pipeline on a hilltop looking south, according to the department.

The state purchased the lot from John and Ramona Reeves, paying them $2 million for the land. The Legislature allocated the money for the purchase.

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs will foot the bill for the cemetery's construction, having promised $9 million to ensure the graveyard meets the standards of the VA's other national cemeteries, according to Kalei Rupp, a spokesperson for Military and Veterans Affairs.

The Fox cemetery will be the third veterans' cemetery in the state and the first in the Interior. The department already operates veterans' cemeteries in Southeast Alaska in Sitka and in Southcentral on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson outside Anchorage.

Rep. David Guttenberg said he's delighted the state finally can begin work on land to give veterans in the Interior a final resting place nearby.

"I think it's a long time coming," the Fairbanks Democrat said. "Even before I started working on it there was a need for it."

Guttenberg brought the idea before the Legislature in 2009, and the state believed it had found a suitable location last year. That location, a 40-acre plot off Gold Mine Trail, was later deemed unfit for the cemetery because of permafrost.

After the first location was rejected, the state put out word that it was willing to purchase about 300 acres of private land for the cemetery and began talks with the Reeves. Guttenberg said he believes the Reeves gave the state a good deal.

"I know the land is worth more," he said, "but John and Ramona's parents are Marines, and I think they recognize the importance of doing this."

Saturday August 2nd  2014  11th  EDITION  4:32 P.M.]

Coast Guard medevacs ailing woman near Juneau
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard medevaced an ailing 79-year-old woman from the 951-foot cruise ship Star Princess near Glacier Bay, Saturday.

An Air Station Sitka MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew safely hoisted the woman and transported her to awaiting medical personnel in Juneau.

Watchstanders at the 17th District command center in Juneau received a request for assistance from a paramedic aboard the Bermuda flagged cruise ship. The woman was reportedly suffering from respiratory distress and possible cranial bleeding and needed to be medevaced.

“The cruise ship’s paramedic provided invaluable assistance in caring for the patient as we transported her to Juneau,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Erik Ihle, watchstander at 17th District command center. “We often work with our cruise ship partners to assist the patients so we can focus on safely providing smooth transport.”

Weather at the time of the incident was reported as calm with heavy fog offering 1 mile visibility.

Suspects resist arrest, fight officers now at LCCC
According to JPD reports, two Juneau Police officers contacted a group of people in Marine Park regarding open containers of alcohol around 1:45 (this) Saturday morning , including four males and two females.

During the course of the interaction, one of the males and a female complied with an officer’s request to leave the park. The three other men and woman did not however.

One of the men, 32 year-old Jack Joseph Paine Jr., engaged in a fight with one of the officers. As Paine Jr. began fighting with the officer, a second man, 32 year-old Francois P. Whitman, joined the fight, “head-butting” the other officer.
The female in the group, 23 year-old Charity J. Berkley , grabbed onto an officer’s back as he attempted to arrest Paine Jr. The officer knocked the female to ground, at which point the third man, 30 year-old Corey L. Nashoanak, began to aggressively approach the officers, refused their orders for him not to interfere in the arrests, and was also ultimately arrested by the officers.

Paine Jr. was lodged at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center on counts of Assault on a Police Officer and Resisting/Interfering with an Officer.

Whitman was lodged at LCCC on counts of Assault on a Police Officer and Resisting/Interfering with an Officer.

Berkley was lodged at LCCC on counts of Resisting/Interfering with an Officer and Disorderly Conduct.

Nashoanak was lodged at LCCC on counts of Resisting/Interfering with an Officer and Disorderly Conduct.

The suspects were evaluated by the Bartlett Regional Hospital for minor injuries prior to lodging at LCCC. The two involved officers also received minor injuries. Alcohol was a factor in this incident.

Juneau Fire fatality
On the afternoon of Friday, August 1, at about 5:47 P.M., Capital City Fire and Rescue personnel and Juneau Police Department officers responded to a report of a house fire in the 1900 block of Lemon Creek Road.

Responders found an unresponsive 56 year old Juneau woman in a bedroom.

She was later pronounced dead at Bartlett Hospital.

Crime lab: DNA test doesn't clear convicted killer
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Alaska's state crime lab could not exclude Michael Alexander as the source of DNA evidence found on the clothing of a Fairbanks girl he was convicted of killing more than 25 years ago.

Alexander is serving a life sentence for the 1987 murder of Kathy Stockholm, a 17-year-old student at West Valley High School.

The DNA test was part of a lawsuit to challenge Alexander's conviction. It filed by the nonprofit Alaska Innocence Project.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that District Attorney Scott Mattern announced the crime lab's finding Thursday.

He says the DNA link between Alexander and the victim is sufficient evidence for the lawsuit to be tossed and for work to stop on DNA analysis of other evidence used at the 1988 trial.

College professor, 75, dies in Mt. Whitney fall
SEQUOIA NATIONAL PARK, Calif. (AP) — California authorities say a community college professor from Texas fell to his death while climbing Mount Whitney, which has the highest peak in the U.S. outside of Alaska.

The National Park Service said Friday that search crews recovered the body of 75-year-old Dawson Johnson from the mountain's north slope at an elevation of 13,300 feet on Thursday. Johnson, of Redwater, Texas, had been hiking with his wife in Sequoia National Park on Tuesday when he decided to take a solo hike to Mount Whitney, where other hikers reported seeing him on a trail that approaches the summit.

After Johnson failed to return to his campsite by the next morning, his wife contacted park rangers to report him missing.

Texarkana television station KTAL Johnson was a longtime computer technology instructor at Texarkana College.

Fairbanks endures wet July
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The city of Fairbanks just missed a rainfall record.

The National Weather Service says 5.78 inches of rain fell at the Fairbanks International Airport in July, making it the second-wettest July on record.

The soggy month followed the wettest June since records started being kept 102 years ago.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that this is already the sixth-rainiest summer on record, and August is off to a wet start.

Alaska man charged in wife's March death
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Fairbanks police say a man who told authorities his wife committed suicide has now been charged in her death.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that John C. McDonald was arrested Friday and booked into the Fairbanks Correctional Center on a charge of first-degree murder.

City spokeswoman Amber Courtney says the husband has been under investigation since March, when he reported that his 35-year-old wife, Crystal McDonald, fatally shot herself at their home.

GOP not taking sides
A spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee says that group isn't likely to pick sides in the GOP Alaska U.S. Senate primary.

Brad Dayspring said the group tends to get involved if it sees Democratic groups or campaigns "trying to mess with the results" of Republican primaries. He said that doesn't seem to be the case here.

Dayspring was asked to respond to comments by the group's executive director to The Hill that the committee reserved the right to get involved in Alaska's primary.

Three prominent Republicans are vying for the nomination for the seat held by Democratic Sen. Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election.

State Republicans have been preaching unity in hopes of avoiding a divisive primary that would hurt the eventual nominee's chances of challenging Begich.

House Roll Call: $694 million bill for immigration
The 223-189 roll call Friday by which the House passed a $694 million bill aimed at addressing the immigration crisis on the U.S.-Mexico border.

A "yes" vote is a vote to pass the bill.

Voting yes were 1 Democrat and 222 Republicans.

Voting no were 185 Democrats and 4 Republicans.

Alaska Republican Representative Don Young voted "yes".

Troopers change ticket to warning in musk ox death
NOME, Alaska (AP) — Alaska Wildlife Troopers have changed a citation for a Nome woman accused of killing a musk ox out of season to a warning.

KNOM reports Diana Adams was cited last week for killing a musk ox as tensions rise in this Bering Sea community over an influx of musk oxen that has threatened pets and property.

Wildlife trooper Mike Creswell tells the Nome radio station the summons has been changed to a written warning. There was no immediate explanation from troopers why the ticket was changed, but troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen says the decision was made after consultation with Fish and Game officials and the district attorney's office.

The citation preceded another incident in which a different musk ox killed a dog in a lot owned by Adams and Mitch Erickson.

Adams' attorney, Erin Lillie, says the change in the ticket status means this is likely the end of the case.

[Friday August 1ST  2014  15TH  EDITION  4:20 P.M.]

Necropsy doesn't pinpoint cause of lion's death
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — A necropsy has failed to determine the cause of death of a Steller sea lion found near Ketchikan this week.

The Ketchikan Daily News reports the necropsy was conducted Thursday on the mature male sea lion, which was found near Refuge Cove State Park.

Authorities said there were no physical signs of trauma, broken bones or signs of bullet wounds in the carcass of the sea lion, which weighed more than 1,500 pounds.

The sea lion's heart was abnormally soft and almost unrecognizable. Officials said it could have been caused by disease or tidal action. All other organs appeared normal.

Old age also hasn't been ruled out as the cause of death.

JPD Crime of the Week, small explosion at school
Juneau police are asking the public's help in solving a case of a small explosion that occured last Saturday morning around 8:30 when a group of five or six children, ranging in age from seven to thirteen years old, possibly caused thel explosion behind Dzantiki Heeni Middle School.

The explosion was from a black nylon bag with the brand label of “Trailmaker Equipment”. The cans inside consisted of three cans of Axe body spray and one can of Old Spice spray. The bag had been set on fire which caused the cans to explode.

The same group of children is believed to have been involved in entering the school causing damage to a window that will cost a thousand dollars to repair. The suspects also appear to have pried open a vending machine, taking snacks. Wrappers matching the snacks taken were later found at the athletic fields.

The suspects were recorded by surveillance cameras. Because of the youth of the suspects those pictures are not being released to the public. The Juneau Police Department is instead hoping to identify an adult who is familiar with the children who live in the area of the school. JPD hopes that adult will volunteer to try and help JPD identify the children so that appropriate contact with the parents, the school administrators where the children attend school, and juvenile justice authorities can happen.

JPD would also ask that parents who live in the area of the school ask their own kids about who is responsible for the incident. JPD’s experience is that kids involved in this type of behavior will discuss what happened and will tell other children.

Anyone with information is encouraged to log on to the Juneau Crime Line Web site and report their tip. You may also call JPD at 586-0600. You may be eligible for a reward.

Tlingit raven silkscreen plaque lifted from Juneau
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A piece of Alaska Native art on loan to the Juneau International Airport has been stolen.

The silkscreen painting of a bald eagle, representative of the Tlingit Eagle Clan, on a yellow cedar plaque was stolen last week. It had been on display on a wall in the first-floor waiting room in the airport's old wing.

The artwork simply hung from a nail on the wall.

The piece has a value of about $125, but it holds sentimental value for Richard Poor, who loaned the artwork to the airport. He was good friends with the artist, the late Jim Osborne.

A sister piece of a raven, representative of the Tlingit Raven Clan, remains on display at the airport.

GOP group unlikely to get involved in AK primary
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Campaign says that group isn't likely to pick sides in the GOP Alaska U.S. Senate primary.

Brad Dayspring said the group tends to get involved if it sees Democratic groups or campaigns "trying to mess with the results" of Republican primaries. He said that doesn't seem to be the case here.

Dayspring was asked to respond to comments by the group's executive director to The Hill that the committee reserved the right to get involved in Alaska's primary.

Three prominent Republicans are vying for the nomination for the seat held by Democratic Sen. Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election.

State Republicans have been preaching unity in hopes of avoiding a divisive primary that would hurt the eventual nominee's chances of challenging Begich.

Palin urges repeal of oil tax structure
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin says keeping the current oil tax structure in place would be a "devastating step backwards" in further developing the state.

Palin made the remarks in a nearly 18-minute video posted online, just over two weeks before voters will decide whether to repeal the system.

Palin said she will vote to repeal. She says she considers the tax system put in place when she was governor as more fair. The state would revert to that system if the repeal effort is successful.

If it is repealed, making the switch could be a logistical challenge for the Department of Revenue.

It has estimated it will need to hire additional auditors and that reconfiguring its systems could cost up to $2 million.

Human remains found believed to be missing man
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say human remains found in western Alaska are believed to be those of a missing 21-year-old Brevig Mission man.

Troopers say there are no obvious signs of foul play involving the body believed to be that of Clarence Olanna, who was last seen by his family July 15.

Volunteer searchers found the remains on the shore about 3 miles west of Brevig Mission. Troopers were notified about the discovery Thursday night.

Soon after Olanna disappeared, searchers found his clothing, but no other sign of him.

Troopers say the remains are being sent to the state medical examiner's office for an autopsy.

Guardsmen return home today
A platoon of approximately 30 military policeman with the Alaska Army National Guard’s 297th Military Police Company, 761st Battalion are scheduled to return to Alaska Friday after an eleven-month deployment to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Among those will be five Alaska Army National Guardsmen flying into the Juneau International Airport, arriving at 3:28 pm today. The public is welcome and encouraged to attend their arrival home.

The Guardsmen deployed last September to Guantanamo Bay in support of Operation Enduring Freedom as part of Joint Task Force-GTMO Joint Detention Group.

Their mission was to conduct safe, humane, legal and transparent care and custody of detainees, including those convicted by military commission.

For the returning platoon, their primary mission during the deployment was providing area security at the facility.

Authorities investigating whale, ferry collision
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — A team of scientists is investigating the death of a humpback whale that was struck by the state ferry Kennicott near Kodiak.

KMXT reports law enforcement from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is investigating whether the ferry strike killed the animal.

Kate Wynne, a marine mammal specialist for the University of Alaska Sea Grant Program, said the 25-ton whale died of massive trauma.

Frances Gulland, the lead veterinarian for the investigation, said the whale was hit while it was alive. But she said it still wasn't known whether the death was caused by the ship.

A spokesman for the ferry system, Jeremy Woodrow, said the incident happened Saturday. He said it is a rare occurrence. He also said there was no damage to the ferry.

Train operator: Track failure caused derailment
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The operator of a popular Alaska vintage tourist train says a track-switching failure caused a recent derailment that left 23 people with minor injuries.

KTUU reports the White Pass & Yukon Route tourist train went off track July 23 near Skagway after what the operator calls "an isolated singular track component failure."

The company says the failure occurred with the system that switches from one track to another.

Officials say both the system and the track have been repaired.

Two vintage locomotives and four passenger rail cars were involved in the derailment during a run from Skagway to Canada. The train was carrying about 360 passengers and crew.

Railroad president John Finlayson says the company is moving forward with a commitment to the safety of passengers and employees.

Renovation to allow more artwork at Kodiak Museum
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — A small renovation job at the Baranov Museum in Kodiak will allow more room to display artwork.

KMXT says additional shelving is being added to one of the museum's collection areas.

The museum received a grant from the Rasmuson Foundation to improve art storage in the historic Erskine House.

Museum director Tiffany Brunson says that will allow the artwork to go into a more appropriate setting.

Brunson says most of the art is hanging on walls in the administrative offices because there is nowhere else to put it.

The work is expected to be completed this week.

Helicopter work downtown Sunday
According to a release from Tourism Best Management...
On Sunday afternoon, August 3rd, there will be approximately 30 minutes of helicopter activity near downtown Juneau.

Coastal Helicopters will be flying technical equipment to be installed on the Zaandam which will be docked at the South Franklin Cruise Dock from 1:00pm until 10:00pm.

They thank you for your understanding as this is the only method by which this technical project can be accomplished.

Corrections issues new policy on inmate deaths
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska Department of Corrections has developed a new policy on how prisoner deaths are handled.

The change comes after weeks of increased scrutiny over a string of inmate deaths.

A state legislative hearing was held in July to address five inmate deaths at state correctional institutions between April and June.

KTUU says an 11-page summary of the new policy that's posted on the DOC's website promises greater transparency than the previous version.

The summary says that in the event of a prisoner's death, the department will notify next of kin and promptly provide the public with information about the death that is not confidential.

The statement says the department also will conduct confidential investigations to determine the causes and circumstances of inmate deaths, as well as determine if there are any deficiencies in the DOC system.

Former C-E-O of Mat-Su dairy found guilty of making false statements to cover up fraud
A jury convicted Karen Olson on two felony counts Wednesday at U-S District Court in Anchorage.

The Alaska Dispatch reports that Olson was charged with lying to U-S Department of Agriculture
officials about federally-backed state loans.

Prosecutors say Olson knew that funds were being diverted from the Valley Dairy by its owner, Kyle Beus, who pleaded guilty to fraud charges last year.

Olson took over operations of the dairy from Beus when the fraud was detected, but failed to alert authorities.

The dairy went out of business in 2012.

Olson is scheduled to be sentenced in October.

Bethel council narrows field to 3 for manager
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — City officials in Bethel have narrowed the list of candidates for city manager down to three.

KYUK reports the council conducted interviews with seven candidates this week either by telephone or teleconference.

A second round of interviews will be conducted next week, and the city attorney will conduct background and reference checks.

The names of the three candidates haven't been released.

The city manager position became open when the council fired former manager Lee Foley in May because of improperly awarded contracts, special agreements and violations of nepotism rules.

State agrees to settle alleged waste violations
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska's transportation department has agreed to pay nearly $118,000 to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to settle alleged hazardous waste violations.

EPA said the department failed to identify as hazardous waste about 250 gallons of highway paint that was placed in a plastic-lined pit and allowed to solidify.

EPA also alleged the department failed to label a used oil tank and 55-gallon drums as containing hazardous waste.

The agreement states that the department, in signing it, neither admits nor denies the claims.

Department spokeswoman Jill Reese said the state agency elected to pay a fine after determining it was in the best interest of the state and EPA to negotiate a settlement "and save the expense of involving the courts."

[Thursday July 31st  2014  14th EDITION  6:03 P.M.]

Ferry parking plans for Haines Fair this weekend
If you plan on ridding on the ferry for the Haines fair for the weekend, please consider arranging a ride to the terminal unless you are taking a vehicle on the ferry.

There will be no additional parking in the lot and it will fill up fast.

Aukeman Triathlon traffic issues
The University of Alaska will be conducting the Aukeman Triathlon Saturday, August 2 from 8:00 AM until 11:00 AM.

Bicyclists will be traveling along the Back Loop Rd and Glacier Spur Rd.

Runners will be traveling along Glacier Hwy between the University and the Auke Lake trail head.

The road will remain open to vehicular traffic, but drivers should use caution when traveling in these areas.

ConocoPhillips Alaska reports $627M 2Q earnings
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — ConocoPhillips Alaska, one of the North Slope's major players, reported adjusted second-quarter earnings of $627 million.

That compares to adjusted earnings of $585 million during the second quarter of 2013, a figure that does not include a one-time, $97 million settlement.

The company reported earnings of $598 million for the first quarter of 2014.

In a release, the company attributed higher prices and, to a lesser degree, the startup of liquefied natural gas exports from its Kenai plant for the higher earnings, relative to the first quarter of the year.

Smoldering heating pads fill home with smoke
CCFR responded to a reported residential fire alarm and smoke inside a home in the 1800 block of Bartlett Ave on Thursday, July 31 at 1:15 AM.

Assistant Chief Ed Quinto says first arriving engine fire crews encounterd a smoke filled 2 story home. Crews made entry into the home. They did not find any fire but found smoldering rolls of carpet heating pads. The pads were rolled up for storage and were smoldering due to the heating elements being wired and turned on. The heating elements had caused the material to heat up and melt.

The damage was confined to the material and the home was not damaged. Estimated cost was $300.

Don Young on EPA
Republican Congressman Don Young of Alaska recently gave quite the impassioned speech in the transportation committee on his concerns over the EPA and the proposed Pebble mine.


New group jumping into Alaska Senate race
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A new group is getting involved in Alaska's U.S. Senate race, aimed at curbing spending by outside groups that don't disclose their donors.

CounterPAC wants Democratic Sen. Mark Begich and Republican hopeful Dan Sullivan to disavow any "secret" money spent on their behalves.

If such groups continue spending money, the candidate who benefits would donate money to a charity his opponent chooses.

CounterPAC co-founder Jim Greer said it's less stringent than a Sullivan proposal aimed at limiting radio and TV ads by special interests. While Sullivan is in a contested primary, he and Begich have been the targets of outside groups.

CounterPAC is billed as a nonpartisan group financially backed by technology entrepreneurs. Greer says the group is filing with the Federal Election Commission and will disclose its donors.

Shell, Alaska Natives to share in offshore profits
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska Native regional corporation and six Native Village corporations have signed an agreement with a Shell Oil subsidiary that aims to share the profits from offshore drilling off Alaska's northern coast.

Shell and the Arctic Slope Regional Corp. announced the formation of a new company Thursday called Arctic Inupiat Offshore LLC. Its participants include the village corporations on the North Slope.

The agreement with the Shell subsidiary, Shell Gulf of Mexico Inc., gives the Alaska Native company the option of acquiring an overriding royalty interest from Shell's drilling on leases in the Chukchi Sea.

Shell would get the benefit of local knowledge for its drilling operations.

Arctic Slope President Rex Rock will also lead the new cooperative. He says the agreement allows the corporations to balance the risks and benefits of offshore drilling.

Sea lion carcass found near Ketchikan
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — Authorities hope a necropsy can determine a cause of death for a Steller sea lion found near Ketchikan.

The Ketchikan Daily News reports the sea lion was found dead Wednesday close to Refuge Cove State Park.

Gary Freitag is with the Alaska Marine Mammal Stranding Network.

He says there was no obvious cause of death for the sea lion, but they weren't able to turn over the 1,000-pound sea lion to check for injuries on the other side.

The carcass was tied to a rock to prevent is from washing out to sea before the necropsy, which could be conducted as soon as Thursday.

UAS eliminates 4 Juneau jobs to meet budget
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The University of Alaska Southeast campus in Juneau will eliminate four positions as it deals with a $2 million deficit this year.

State funding for the university system was cut by more than $8 million this year, and more than $1 million of that was at the Juneau campus. On top of that, employee salary and benefits increased about $750,000 this year, and campus officials anticipate $205,000 less in tuition because of declining enrollment.

Of the four positions to be eliminated, two were open and won't be filled. The retirements of 12 others at the end of the academic year also will help, and the university will close a building and a bookstore to help meet the budget.

Chenega sailings cancelled for July 31
FVF Chenega sailings for Thursday, July 31 have been cancelled due to crew limitations.

The issue is being resolved and the vessel will sail the following revised schedule Friday, August 1:

Depart Cordova 7:15 a.m.
Arrive Whittier 10:15 a.m.
Depart Whittier 11:30 a.m.
Arrive Cordova 2:30 p.m.
Depart Cordova 3:30 p.m.
Arrive Valdez 6:00 p.m.
Depart Valdez 7:00 p.m.
Arrive Cordova 9:30 p.m.

AMHS staff is contacting affected passengers; for more information, please call your local terminal by dialing 1-907-465-3941 or toll-free at 1-800-642-0066.

The FVF Chenega operates with a crew size of 10 as required by U.S. Coast Guard for the safety of passengers and the vessel. One crew member became ill in the early morning hours prior to Thursday's sailing. A replacement crew member was not immediately available. AMHS is flying the replacement crew member into Cordova today in order to fill in for Friday's scheduled sailing.

You can check for updates at

VPSO firearm training could begin in January
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Firearm training for Alaska village public safety officers could begin as early as January.

A legislative bill recently signed into law by Gov. Sean Parnell will allow VPSOs to carry firearms for the first time.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports it remains to be seen whether regional organizations that employ the officers will choose to arm them.

Alaska State Trooper Sgt. Leonard Wallner says some VPSOs likely will be armed by the end of 2015. Wallner is the statewide coordinator for the rural officer force.

Wallner says the 10 regional organizations that receive state grants to oversee the VPSOs in their member villages generally support arming the officers.

But they want more information on how the process would work, particularly when it comes to liability and public safety.

Price of Anchorage taxi rides increases
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The price of hitching a ride in an Anchorage taxicab is now a little bit higher.

KTUU reports the Anchorage Assembly recently approved an increase in the drop rates of taxi meters, from $2 to $2.75.

The per-mile rates remain at $2.50.

The last taxi meter increase in Anchorage occurred in 2005.

'Lifelong Republican' in Begich ad undeclared
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A man who identifies himself as a lifelong Republican in an ad for Democratic U.S. Sen. Mark Begich is currently registered as having no party affiliation.

State voting records show Skip Nelson has been registered as undeclared since 2000. Nelson told the Alaska Dispatch News he was previously registered as Republican in Georgia and Virginia.

In the ad, aimed at touting the level of cooperation between Begich and Republican U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, Nelson says he voted for Murkowski.

According to state records, Nelson did not vote in 2010, when Murkowski was last re-elected. He did vote in 2004, when she was elected following an appointment to the seat. Nelson said he probably voted for her then.

Begich spokesman Max Croes said the campaign stands behind the ad.

2 inmates overdose at Juneau correctional facility
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say two male inmates have overdosed on controlled substances at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center in Juneau.

The Alaska Dispatch News says both inmates were hospitalized Tuesday.

Alaska Department of Corrections deputy director Sherrie Daigle says one man was treated and released back to prison.

Daigle says the inmates were being held in separate cells in the segregation unit and she did not know if they overdosed on the same substance.

Daigle says that because of an ongoing investigation, she cannot release details about what the men overdosed on.

State offers free vaccines to Alaskans
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The state is offering free vaccines to eligible Alaskans in August.

KTUU reports the vaccines are being offered at public health centers across the state during National Immunization Awareness Month.

The usual $28 administrative fee is being waived for people of all ages who are eligible, including children under the age of 3 and people without health insurance.

Individual vaccine costs are being covered by federal and state grants.

People pay for office visits on a sliding scale based on ability to pay. No one will be turned away if they can't pay.

Linda Worman with the Department of Health and Social Services says appointments can be scheduled through local state public health centers.

PFD could double this year
The Permanent Fund Dividend could double this year compared to last year's 900-dollar payout. Dropping the huge losses of 2009 from the five-year rolling average of earnings used to calculate dividends could lead to a P-F-D worth 15-hundred to 2-thousand dollars apiece.

That would be near the record 2069-dollar dividend of 2008.

The Permanent Fund Corporation CEO Mike Burns tells the Alaska Dispatch that dividends would certainly have been bigger this year, even with flat growth, just by dropping 2009, the only year the Permanent Fund ever posted a net loss.

The exact amount will be announced in September.

Site work will prep Glenn Highway for expansion
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Work will start soon on a project to expand the Glenn Highway to three lanes near Eagle River.

KTVA reports state crews will begin the first phase of the $42 million highway improvement project in August.

It will include constructing a new, three-mile, three-lane highway heading north between Hiland Road and Artillery Road. The highway has about 52,000 cars driving it daily.

Ground preparation will start in August, with the bulk of the construction set for next year.

Plans include building a new bridge over Eagle River. It also includes flattening out the steep grade of the hill leading into the city of Eagle River.

Completion is set for the fall of 2015, and the southbound lanes will be expanded to three lanes once state funding has been approved.

Board approves school superintendent program
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A new program for school superintendents has been approved by the State Board of Education and Early Development.

The program will be offered online through the University of Alaska Southeast.

According to a release from the state Department of Education, state regulations do not require district superintendents to have a superintendent endorsement. But it says the program will allow for current and aspiring superintendents to study things like use of technology, finance and program planning and to take part in a leadership internship.

JPD: Misconduct controlled substances
On July 29, at approximately 12:35 PM, the Juneau Police Department’s Metro Drug Unit served a search warrant at a residence located in the 2700 block of Fritz Cove Road. The search warrant was the culmination of drug cases against 21 year old Juneau resident Dustin Ian Fisher. The Investigation against Fisher began in June, 2014.

During the search, officers located and seized approximately five grams of suspected psilocybin mushrooms, 2850 grams of suspected marijuana, two doses of suspected Aderall, five pieces of blotter paper with suspected LSD, and $42,332 in cash.

No one was present at the house when the officers began the search. Fisher arrived at the house approximately 15 minutes later and was arrested for nine counts of Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance in the 3rd Degree and three count of Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance in the 4th Degree. Fisher was transported to the Lemon Creek Correctional Center and held on no bail.

The Juneau Police Department Metro Drug Unit was assisted by agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigations and officers from the Southeast Alaska Chiefs Against Drugs Task Force.

The investigation continues.

[Wednesday July 30th  2014  14th EDITION  6:36 P.M.]

Miller outlines plan on illegal immigration
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Joe Miller says the U.S. should bill the governments of people who enter this country illegally for policing, housing, food and transportation.

Miller's campaign Wednesday released a seven-point plan for addressing illegal immigration.

The proposal also calls for immediate completion of a fence along the southern border of the U.S. and stopping benefits, like health care, for people who are in this country illegally.

Miller called it a commonsense approach to addressing the issue.

Miller is among the candidates seeking the GOP nomination for the Senate seat held by Democrat Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election. Also running are Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and former Natural Resources commissioner Dan Sullivan.

A fourth GOP candidate, John Jaramillo, is also running but has reported no fundraising activity.

APOC opinion sought on referendum activities

Parnell signs bill honoring late Walter Soboleff
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell has signed legislation honoring the late Tlingit elder Walter Soboleff.

HB217 designates Nov. 14 of each year as Dr. Walter Soboleff Day in Alaska. That date was Soboleff's birthday.

The bill signing ceremony was held in a downtown Juneau park, not far from where work is underway on a cultural center bearing Soboleff's name that is being built by the Sealaska Heritage Institute.

Soboleff's children were on hand for Wednesday's bill signing, which also featured Alaska Native dancing.

Soboleff died in 2011 at age 102. He was a respected spiritual leader, remembered by Parnell as a man who loved all Alaskans.

(pictures and video by Lynn Campbell)

APOC opinion sought on referendum activities
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The leaders of the Alaska House and Senate have requested guidance on lawmakers expressing their opinions on ballot measures and the upcoming oil tax referendum.

The Alaska Public Offices Commission is working on a draft advisory opinion in response to the request by House Speaker Mike Chenault and Senate President Charlie Huggins.

The lawmakers do not single anyone out but seek an opinion on what a legislator can permissibly do with respect to the referendum and ballot measures.

They ask if lawmakers can use their state emails or legislative websites to share their views on the referendum. They also ask if there would be any reporting requirements for use of the state email or phone systems for such activities, if allowed.

Voters will decide the referendum Aug. 19.

Yukon Quest purse in 2015 up from 2014
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The winnings in the 2015 Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race will be increased by more than $12,000 from the purse in this year's race.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports next year's race will have a purse of at least $127,110.

This year's total purse was $115,000, but $12,110 was not claimed because fewer than 15 teams completed the 1,000-mile race.

The unclaimed money is being added to next year's purse.

The record high purse was $150,000 in 2012. That's before sponsorship and donation problems contributed to the recent dip.

The race alternates starts yearly between Fairbanks and Whitehorse, Yukon Territory. Next year's race starts Feb. 7 in Whitehorse.

Skagway man gets 7 years in accidental shooting
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A 50-year-old Skagway man will serve seven years in jail after accidentally shooting his girlfriend during a suicide attempt.

Carl Timothy Forester was sentenced Tuesday for assault.

Judge Philip Pallenberg also ordered Forester's firearms be surrendered to the state for destruction after the November shooting, which he says was "six inches away" from being a homicide.

Authorities said he was depressed and put the shotgun in his mouth. His girlfriend tried to stop him by hitting him in the head with the butt of another gun, but that caused him to involuntarily squeeze the trigger and shoot her in the upper chest.

The victim, who is permanently disfigured, begged the judge for a more lenient sentence, saying there was no intent to harm her.

Tentative ID of man killed in crash released
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a man killed in a head-on collision on the Old Richardson Highway has been tentatively identified as 59-year-old Ernest Ford of North Pole.

The Alaska Bureau of Highway Patrol is investigating the Tuesday morning crash near North Pole. The collision sent 37-year-old Eddie Ahyakak of Fairbanks to the hospital with serious injuries.

According to troopers, Ahyakak was westbound when his pickup truck crossed the center line and struck an SUV driven by the man tentatively identified as Ford.

The SUV became engulfed in flames. Troopers spokeswoman Beth Ipsen says the SUV and contents inside were badly burned.

The driver of the SUV was pronounced dead at the scene.

Ipsen says the state medical examiner's office will conduct an autopsy to determine a positive identity.

Judge tosses Alaska's lawsuit over refuge closures
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A federal judge has dismissed the state's lawsuit over the closure of national wildlife refuges during the partial federal government shutdown last year.

U.S. District Court Judge Sharon Gleason called the case moot.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service restricted access to refuges nationwide during the 16-day shutdown last October.

The state sued as Congress was poised to pass legislation to end the shutdown.

The lawsuit was later amended to add the Alaska Professional Hunters Association as plaintiffs.

The lawsuit claimed the closure violated provisions of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act, and asked Gleason to block future closures that don't comply with the law.

Gleason said the feds' response to a future shutdown may be different.

A Department of Law spokeswoman said the state was evaluating a possible appeal.

Fairbanks priest in alcohol treatment after arrest
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A Fairbanks priest is in an alcohol treatment program following his arrest earlier this year on a charge of driving under the influence.

The Rev. Sean Patrick Thomson pleaded guilty last month to reckless driving as part of a plea agreement.

Court records show the former University of Alaska priest was sentenced to 10 days in jail, but he will receive credit for that time by undergoing alcohol abuse treatment. He also received two years' probation.

Thomson's attorney, Zane Wilson, called it a "fair resolution."

Ronnie Rosenberg, director of human resources for the Fairbanks diocese, said Thomson's duties, when he returns, will depend in part on the recommendations of his treatment program. She told the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner Thomson will not return to the university.

Gold miners outraged at critical Nome letter
NOME, Alaska (AP) — Nome gold miners are angry about a city letter citing the "negative social impacts" of their industry.

KNOM reports miners stormed the Nome City Council meeting Monday night to express their outrage about the July 15 letter to the state Department of Natural Resources from city manager Josie Bahnke.

In the letter, Bahnke wrote to DNR Commissioner Joe Balash that there has been some economic benefit from offshore mining, but those benefits are outweighed by negative social impacts.

The letter refers to a 2011 lease sale that opened up the offshore dredging boom that brought millions in revenues for the state, but left Nome without money to accommodate increased activity.

Kenny Hughes with the Alaska Mining Association says miners feel like city officials are "throwing rocks at us."

Southcentral Foundation announces new building
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Southcentral Foundation has announced it will build a new three-story, $28 million building in Anchorage.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports the building will be located in the University-Medical District, and should be open in the winter of 2015-2016.

The 59,000-square-foot building will cost about $28 million. The state and the Rasmuson Foundation will contribute about $2 million each.

Southcentral Foundation plans to house three of its health programs in the new building, including its growing faith-based training initiative.

That program targets domestic violence, abuse and neglect.

The building will also house the Family Wellness Warriors Initiative conferences, held twice a year.

Plea deal reached in Ketchikan standoff
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — A 30-year-old Ketchikan man has pleaded guilty in a case alleging he threatened to shoot anyone who walked past his home.

Mathew Martinez pleaded guilty Tuesday to assault and weapons charges in connection with the June 10 incident.

Martinez originally was charged with felony assault, terrorist threatening, weapons misconduct and violating conditions of his release.

KRBD says the charges had stemmed from the incident in June, when Martinez called 911 and allegedly made his shooting threats.

A stretch of Schoenbar Road's was closed before Martinez surrendered. No one was injured.

Youth-only fishing day set for Homer
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A youth-only fishing day is scheduled to take place Saturday at the Homer Spit.

Officials with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game say the sport fishing area for youngsters will be held in a section of the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon. The rest of the lagoon will be open to people of all ages.

The youth-only area is open to people 15 years old or younger between 12:01 a.m. Saturday to 11:59 p.m. Saturday.

Fish and Game staff will be on hand between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. to help youngsters gear up and fish for silver salmon.

Officials say fishing rods will be available for children to check out.

UA offers in-state tuition if you have family ties
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The University of Alaska will cut tuition rates by more than $13,000 a year to students who have family ties to Alaska and want to study here.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the two-year pilot program will give in-state tuition rates to students with parents or grandparents in Alaska, no matter where the student lives.

The "Come Home to Alaska" program starts this fall, and is intended to counter a demographic dip in Alaska high school graduates, which translates to enrollment declines at UA campuses. For instance, there were about 10,200 students at Alaska Fairbanks last fall, the lowest enrollment in five years.

In-state tuition for students carrying a 30-credit academic year costs about $5,200 a year. Non-resident tuition for the same academic load is about $18,400 a year.

Parnell signs bill designating state gun
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska will now have an official state bolt-action rifle.

Gov. Sean Parnell this week signed legislation giving that distinction to the pre-1964 Winchester Model 70, in a range of calibers.

The bill, sponsored by Senate President Charlie Huggins, refers to the gun as the "rifleman's rifle." The bill says the gun helped Alaskans "establish a firm foothold" in the wilderness between 1930 and 1963.

[Tuesday July 29th  2014  17TH EDITION  8:05 P.M.]

Waste Program changes
The Commercial Household Hazardous Waste Program Drop Off Days will change from Mondays to Thursdays starting this week.

Jim Penor, CBJ Solid Waste Coordinator, said, "It's just better for the operation." According to Penor, it just made sense to move the day for local businesses to Thursday since the general public can dispose of items on Thursdays and Fridays from 8:00 AM - 4:30 PM.

Penor added that there will be no lines like in the past when they offered service to the public only one day a month in the summer. They also have expanded their e-waste program to include all electronics. "If it plugs in I'll take it", said Penor. He said the old program limited people to only one television or computer monitor. That restriction has been relaxed. Penor says, "If someone comes in with a couple of T.V's we'll take it."

Businesses will still continue to call CBJ Sold Waste for appointments, which will now be made for Thursdays.

Governor Parnell to honor Dr. Walter Soboleff
Governor Sean Parnell will be in Juneau Wednesday to sign legislation establishing November 14 of each year as Dr. Walter Soboleff Day.

A respected Tlingit elder, Soboleff had a distinguished career in Alaska as a businessman, pastor, scholar, storyteller, and statesman.

Soboleff passed away May 22, 2011 at the age of 102.

The governor will sign HB 217 in Juneau Wednesday at 2:30 Marine Park.

Senator Murkowski connects with former USCG Commandant as he begins Arctic mission
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski on Tuesday met with the United States’ first Special Representative to the Arctic, Admiral Robert J. Papp. Papp, who was named to the position less than two weeks ago, sat down with Senator Murkowski in one of his first official visits in his new capacity.

Murkowski and Papp talked about his initial priorities as he begins guiding Arctic policy, as well as next steps as he broadens his knowledge base beyond what he learned during his extensive career in the Coast Guard.

Senator Murkowski shared her thoughts on the importance of having Admiral Papp in the position:
“I want to reinforce the opportunity we have with Admiral Papp as the newly-named Special Representative to the Arctic. Not only does he come to the position with incredible credentials – starting his career in Adak and ascending to the position of Commandant – but using his maritime experience to inform his thought process on how to proceed in an evolving Arctic. It was important that the Secretary name someone that has that appreciation of how Alaska fits and how America fits in the global community in the Arctic. He has respect and credibility here in America and around the globe and I look forward to working with him moving forward.”

Admiral Papp spoke about the challenges of educating Americans that the U.S. is an Arctic Nation:
“Senator Murkowski and I often lament together: How do you get the general American public to understand that we’re an Arctic Nation? As a sailor and a Coast Guardsman, I was frustrated that most Americans don’t even consider us a Maritime Nation – and first and foremost, we’re a maritime nation. We depend on the maritime for all we do. Once you get them to understand we’re a maritime nation, you can get them to understand we’re an Arctic Nation – because the Arctic is a maritime venue. They go together, and it’s a constant education process.”

APD: Crash victim was drunk, driving in wrong lane
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Authorities say a woman killed in a head-on collision last spring was drunk and driving in the wrong lane of the Seward Highway.

Anchorage police on Tuesday said charges will not be filed in the March 18 accident that killed 29-year-old Salafai Carol Iosefa of Whittier.

She was driving a passenger car southbound in the northbound lane when it hit a fuel tanker head-on near Potter Marsh. The driver of the tanker, 61-year-old Ronald Guettinger of Fairbanks, attempted to avoid the crash, which was captured by a video system on his truck.

Police say chemical testing showed Guettinger was sober, but Iosefa had more than twice the legal limit of alcohol in her system.

According to police, the district attorney's office declined to bring charges against Guettinger.

1 person killed in head-on crash near North Pole
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — One person has been killed in a head-on crash near North Pole.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the crash happened Tuesday morning on the Old Richardson Highway.

Authorities say one person was pronounced dead at the scene and the other transported to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital with possible minor injuries.

The name of the person killed will be released after the identity is confirmed and the next-of-kin notified.

Anchorage volunteers help arrest 103 for DUI
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A citizen task force that helps Anchorage police look for drunken drivers is seeing results.

KTVA reports the citizen DUI task force started last August. Between then and the end of June, it's accounted for 103 arrests of drunken drivers.

Volunteers use their own cars to drive Anchorage streets and call 911 if they suspect the driver is under the influence. Some volunteers have received awards for catching 10 or more drunken drivers.

Anchorage police say volunteers put in more than 3,200 hours in the program's first 10 months, and at least six volunteers were honored for each donating more than 200 hours to the program.

Police say those interested in joining the program can apply for the next Anchorage Police Citizen Academy. The application deadline is Aug. 15.

Suspects identified in Anchorage school arson fire
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Authorities say they've identified suspects in a fire that burned about 15,000-square-feet of the rubberized playground at an Anchorage school

KTUU reports the fire was at Willow Crest Elementary on Saturday about noon. A smaller fire was reported at the school just after 4:30 a.m., Saturday, too.

Investigator Brian Balega says they believe four boys, all about 15 years old, were involved in the later incident.

School district spokeswoman Heidi Embley says playgrounds don't generally set themselves on fire.

She declined to say whether the suspects were Anchorage students, referring questions to the fire department.

A damage estimate wasn't immediately available Tuesday afternoon.

Judge delays his ruling against DC handgun ban
WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge who struck down the District of Columbia's ban on carrying handguns outside the home has stopped his ruling from going into effect for about three months so city lawmakers can respond with new legislation.

U.S. District Judge Frederick J. Scullin on Tuesday stayed his ruling from going into effect until Oct. 22.

In a ruling that became public on Saturday, Scullin struck down the city's ban. He wrote that the Second Amendment gives people the right to carry a handgun outside the home for self-defense.

The group that had brought the lawsuit against the city did not oppose a 90-day stay. Lawyers for the city want Scullin to stay the ruling while they appeal, but he will not rule on that request until at least August.

UPDATE: Residential Structure Fire
The Capital City Fire Marshal's Office is still investigating the cause of the fire that occured on Friday at 4390 Glacier Highway.

Fire Marshal DanJager reported that a follow up investigation revealed several key facts regarding the structure. Due to the entire roof being removed for major renovation work, and only being covered by a plastic covering, the fire was allowed to progress quickly. There were several windows missing due to the renovation work, which helped create the natural chimney effect and rapidly consumed the house prior to fire personnel arriving. The interior of the house was all exposed wood, there was no fire resistant drywall in place to have helped confine the fire at all.

The owner stated that the estimated dollar loss of all personal items was approximately $10,000. Most of the families personal and household items were in a storage unit off site. The fire marshal's office is still investigating the actual cause of this fire.

Man rescued from Chena River in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A man had to be rescued after being swept down the Chena River in strong currents.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the unidentified man jumped into the river just before 9 p.m. Monday. Witnesses said he couldn't swim back to shore because of the strong current.

City and university fire departments responded, and found him about 50 minutes into their search. He was found cold and wet in the brush along the north side of the river, about a half mile downstream from where he jumped into the river.

He was put in a raft, taken to the other shore and then transported to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital.

UAF has new vice chancellor
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The University of Alaska Fairbanks has a new vice chancellor for rural, community and Native education.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Evon Peter started work on Monday.

He was one of two finalists for the position. He replaces Bernice Joseph, who retired last year and died in January.

Peter has previously worked with Native groups and was the coordinator for UAF's Yukon Flats Center. He is a Gwich'in-Koyukon Athabascan from Arctic Village.

River data gathered as safeguard against mining
NOME, Alaska (AP) — The western Alaska village of Elim is working with a conservation organization to collect data from the Tubutulik (Too boo too lik) River as a safeguard against possible future uranium mining.

KNOM reports the Center for Water Advocacy is working with Elim's Tribal Council for the effort that began two years ago about 40 miles upriver from the village.

The goal is to collect five years of data in Elim's goal of attaining jurisdiction from the state over the water flowing into the community's land.

The data collection is underway in response to past interest in a large uranium deposit near Boulder Creek by Triex Minerals Corp., a Canadian mineral exploration company.

During the 2008 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, students and elders rallied at the Elim checkpoint to protest the idea.

River data gathered as safeguard against mining
NOME, Alaska (AP) — The western Alaska village of Elim is working with a conservation organization to collect data from the Tubutulik River as a safeguard against possible future uranium mining.

KNOM reports the Center for Water Advocacy is working with Elim's Tribal Council for the effort that began two years ago about 40 miles upriver from the village.

The goal is to collect five years of data in Elim's goal of attaining jurisdiction from the state over the water flowing into the community's land.

The data collection is underway in response to past interest in a large uranium deposit near Boulder Creek by Triex Minerals Corp., a Canadian mineral exploration company.

During the 2008 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, students and elders rallied at the Elim checkpoint to protest the idea.

Feds sue former Alaska man over liens
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The U.S. attorney's office in Alaska has filed a civil lawsuit against a Danese, West Virginia, man who has filed liens seeking $950 million from federal employees.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Bryan Wilson is seeking an injunction to stop Trapper Killsmany from filing the liens against Social Security Administration employees.

Killsmany seeks another $350 million in liens from several family members living at Manley Hot Springs, Alaska, and from an Alaska Native News reporter who once wrote about him.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports filing such liens is popular among those subscribing to the sovereign citizen movement, which holds the federal government doesn't have jurisdiction over them.

No explosives found in Sitka dynamite search
SITKA, Alaska (AP) — An Army ordnance disposal team has found no live explosives after a pair of detonator wires was discovered in Sitka.

The Daily Sitka Sentinel reports the wires were traced to a hole created in a rock-blasting project 30 years ago.

The Army team led the investigation and would have disposed of explosives if any had been found during the hours-long operation Saturday. The wires were discovered Friday just off Lance Drive.

Sitka police and fire departments, as well as public works crews, assisted in the response.

Assistant Fire Chief Al Stevens says it appears the dynamite connected to the blasting cord had already exploded long ago, fragmenting the rock.

Stevens says another outcome of the project was the removal of an 80-foot hemlock tree endangering power lines.

ConocoPhillips, Doyon announce new drilling rig
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — ConocoPhillips Alaska and oil field contractor Doyon Drilling have announced plans to build a new rotary drilling rig for the Kuparuk (Coo pear ik) River unit on the North Slope.

KTUU says the new rig will be the first to be added to Kuparuk's fleet in 14 years.

The companies announced the new contract Monday for construction of the rig, which will be named Doyon 142.

Drilling is slated to begin in February 2016.

Doyon Drilling is a subsidiary of Doyon Ltd., the Fairbanks-based regional Native corporation.

Children adrift in boat in Alaska rescued
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Three children have been rescued after going adrift in their family's small boat in a southeast Alaska harbor.

The Coast Guard says the boys were wearing life jackets and stayed calm after going adrift in the skiff Monday in Saxman Harbor near Ketchikan. Water conditions were calm.

Ketchikan police notified the Coast Guard that the parents of the boys reported the children had gone adrift.

A Coast Guard response boat crew found the children and safely delivered them to their parents, with the skiff in tow.

Petty Officer 1st Class Matthew Degnon says the crew was able to arrive at the scene within three minutes.

UA Pres offered bonus to stay
University of Alaska President Pat Gamble is being offered a six-figure bonus for staying on the job for another year.

The Alaska Dispatch reports that the U-A Board of Regents voted in June to offer a contract extension along with a 320-thousand dollar retention bonus.

The amount is equal to one-year's salary, and is the first bonus offered to Gamble since he became U-A president in 2010.

University spokeswoman Kate Ripley says even with the bonus, Gamble's compensation is lower than that of presidents at comparable universities.

Three years ago, when regents increased Gamble's salary by 8-and-a-half percent for his second year on the job, Gamble said he would donate the extra 25-thousand dollars to student scholarships.

Report: More acidic seawater poses risks in Alaska
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A new report says the release of carbon dioxide into the air from factory smokestacks to the tailpipe on your car could pose a risk to red king crab and other lucrative fisheries in Alaska.

Ocean water becomes more acidic when it absorbs carbon dioxide released by human sources, such as the burning of fossil fuels.

The research, led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, was to be published Tuesday in the online journal Progress in Oceanography. It is aimed at spurring discussion on how to address the changes.

Researchers said changes in ocean chemistry could affect shellfish and other small creatures from building skeletons or shells in the early stages of development. Red king crab and tanner crab also grow more slowly in more acidic water.

Food Bank seeks donations after spike in users
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Food Bank of Alaska is asking for donations after seeing a spike in users.

The bank purchased nearly 40,000 pound of bulk food, but needs more. The bank provides food to more than 100 partners that serve people in Anchorage and the Matanuska-Susitna Borough and 200 partners across the state.

Last year, agencies served up to 100 people on busy days. This year, they are typically seeing 250 people, including seniors, veterans and families.

Officials say the numbers are up after a food stamp reduction and the end of extended unemployment benefits last year. Plus, more children are at home during the summer, meaning they are not getting meals at school.

There also have been fewer donations to the Food Bank this summer.

[Monday July 28th  2014  12th  EDITION  6:16 P.M.]

Recalled carob snacks sold in Alaska
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — State officials have confirmed that carob snacks that have been recalled for possible salmonella contamination were sold in Alaska.

However, the state Department of Environmental Conservation says in a release that there's no known illness or reactions reported here or elsewhere.

The recall covers various carob snacks from Dancing Star LLC.

Officials say the snacks contain carob power that was part of a supplier's recall because of the possible salmonella contamination.

Fairbanks man get 57 months on cocaine charge
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 41-year-old Fairbanks man will spend 57 months in a federal prison after being convicted on drug charges.

The U.S. attorney's office says Etienne Devoe was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Anchorage on Monday for possession of cocaine with intent to distribute.

Police found the drugs in his duffel bag when they were searching a Fairbanks home.

Devoe will be back in court in February, when he is tried on charges of being a member of a large scale drug conspiracy.

Eagle causes power outages in Ketchikan
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Ketchikan utility officials say power was temporarily knocked out in some areas of town out after a bald eagle struck a power line.

Ketchikan Public Utilities Electric division manager Andy Donato says the eagle carcass was recovered after the incident.

The Ketchikan Daily News reports the bird strike occurred shortly before 8 p.m. Sunday, knocking out power to Bear Valley, Point Higgins and Mountain Point sections of town.

Crews restored power by 8:23 p.m. Sunday.

Donato says the eagle carcass is being entered into a federal chain of custody.

Possessing any part of a bald eagle is illegal without a permit.

Bethel Council interviews 7 for city manager's job
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Members of the Bethel City Council this week are interviewing candidates for the position of city manager.

KYUK reports there are seven people in the running for the job, which became open when the council fired former manager Lee Foley in May because of improperly awarded contracts, special agreements and violations of nepotism rules.

Interviews will be held Monday and Tuesday.

Longtime Kenai fire responder, marshal retires
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — Kenai Fire Marshal Eric Wilcox has retired.

Wilcox departs after 25 years with the Kenai Fire Department, the last seven years as fire marshal.

The Peninsula Clarion reports colleagues of Wilcox celebrated his career last week at a retirement party.

The 50-year-old Wilcox says he doesn't have anything out there waiting for him. He says he looks forward to spending more time with his wife and children.

His replacement is Kenai firefighter Tom Carver, a former Kenai police officer and lifelong local resident.

Two LCCC inmates overdose
According Department of Corrections Deputy Director, Sherrie Daigle, two inmates from Lemon Creek Correctional Center were transported to Bartlett Regional Medical Center last Thursday.

The inmates were exhibiting behavior consistent with a drug overdose. One inmate was treated and released the other was medivaced to Anchorage for further treatment.

The inmates apparently secured the drugs while inside of LCCC. The Alaska State Troopers are investigating.

Lt. Gov. hosted NLGA
Anchorage, AK – Lieutenant Governor Mead Treadwell hosted 10 of the nation’s lieutenant governors in Girdwood last week for the National Lieutenant Governors Association (NLGA) annual meeting.

The conference theme was Alaska’s contribution to the U.S. economy and national security, and presentations focused on ways other states could be a part of the large growth expected in Arctic shipping, tourism, and energy development.

Local experts addressing the group included Rear Admiral Daniel Abel, U.S. Coast Guard; Admiral Tom Barrett, Alyeska Pipeline; Lt. Gen. Russell Handy, Alaskan Command; Brig. Gen. Ro Bailey, Alaska Center for Unmanned Aircraft Systems Integration; Pat Yack, Alaska Public Radio Network; and Dr. Tom Nighswander, Alaska Telehealth Advisory Council.

NLGA provides a forum for the exchange of research and best practices for lieutenant governors of all 50 states, as well as the U.S. territories.

Territorial court records will remain in Alaska
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Not all of Alaska's research materials and government records will move to Seattle when the National Archives and Records Administration closes its Anchorage branch.

A deal has been reached to let the territorial court records be housed at the Alaska State Archive in Juneau, instead.

The documents will arrive in the capital on Aug. 4, Aug. 7 and Aug. 8, making the journey on the AlCan Highway and then the last stretch on the ferry from Haines. They will be housed in the state archives' new office building.

The research room at the Anchorage facility closed last month. The building will permanently close in September.

Denali planning for temporary ban on pet goats
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Plans are in the works to temporarily ban certain pets from Denali National Park and Preserve after a local resident was cited for hiking on park trails with his pet goat this summer.

Park Superintendent Don Striker said domestic goats pose a significant risk to Denali's Dall sheep population. He says he is planning to implement a temporary closure barring access to pet goats, and to bring the issue up at an official hearing, likely next year.

He tells the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner temporary closures can last anywhere from 30 days to a couple of years.

Corey Furrow, the Anderson resident cited for hiking with his pet goat, said he understands the park's need to protect Dall sheep. But he said his animal was on a leash.

Loan approved for Prince of Wales hydro project
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — A $20 million loan has been approved for a new hydropower project on Prince of Wales Island.

KRBD reports that the Alaska Energy Authority approved the loan to Haida Energy Inc. for construction of the Reynolds Creek project, about 10 miles east of Hydaburg. The loan was approved in June.

The project could supply power to all of the island's residents, who currently depend on diesel-generated power during some parts of the year.

Haida Energy Inc. is a joint venture of the Haida Corp. and Alaska Power and Telephone Co., which says the project could significantly cut costs.

Energy Authority deputy director Gene Therriault says the island will be able to produce more energy than it currently needs once the project is complete.

Completion is slated for June 2016.

Nome woman cited in musk ox killing
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A 59-year-old Nome woman has been cited by Alaska State Wildlife Troopers in connection with the killing of a musk ox.

KNOM says Diana Adams was cited last week for taking a musk ox out of season in the Icy View subdivision.

Adams told the radio station that she has "been charged with illegal taking of game" and has no comment.

Herds of musk oxen have been loitering close to town and wildlife officials have been looking for a solution.

The Department of Fish and Game is opening a subsistence hunt early for the large shaggy animals, which have attacked pets and damaged property.

But only five animals can be killed beginning Aug. 1 because the population in the entire region is shrinking, and the stock must be conserved.

Eagle freed after rescue from fire
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Volunteers from the Bird Treatment and Learning Center in Anchorage have released a young bald eagle that was injured in a fire.

KTUU says the bird called Sparkie went to the bird center earlier this year with burnt feathers after the feathers were singed when the bird tried to catch rodents running from the fire.

The eagle was released Saturday after being returned to Soldotna.

Bird center volunteer Dave Dorsey says that even after months in recovery, Sparkie is still a wild animal.

The eagle is still brown and is estimated to be three or four years old. Bald eagles don't grow their distinctive white feathers until later.

American Legion state tournament Mulcahy Stadium-Anchorage

Sunday’s scores

Dimond 10, Juneau 0

South 4, Kenai 0

Monday’s games

10 a.m. — Chugiak vs. Kenai

1 p.m. — Wasilla vs. Juneau 

Sockeye return to Steep Creek
Spawning sockeye salmon returned to Steep Creek near Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center on Saturday, July 26. Each year returning salmon attract wild black bears and many bear watchers. To keep bears wild and people safe US Forest Service officials have taken several measures.

The back side of Steep Creek Trail is now closed to provide separation between bears and people as bears enter the creek to forage on salmon. This also improves bear-viewing from the elevated platforms that remain open.

With the closure in place, there is no access to the visitor center area from Moraine Ecology Trail, Glacier Spur Road or Dredge Lakes. Signs announcing the closure have been posted at all trail heads. People can still use these trails since the closure area boundary along Steep Creek has been clearly marked with yellow rope and signs.

The Forest Service recommends the following when on Steep Creek’s elevated platforms: visitors should maintain a calm demeanor and use slow movements. Be courteous and respectful of other visitors. Dogs and bicycles are not permitted. Food and flavored beverages are prohibited outdoors in the visitor center area. Staff and volunteers are on-site most of the time.

Sarah Palin launches online subscription channel
NEW YORK (AP) — Sarah Palin is starting her own subscription-based online network.

The Sarah Palin Channel, which went live on Sunday, bills itself as a "direct connection" for the former Alaska governor and GOP vice presidential candidate with her supporters, bypassing media filters.

Palin says she oversees all content posted to the channel. This will include her own political commentary. Other features for subscribers include the ability to submit questions to Palin and participate with her in online video chats, she says in an online announcement.

Membership is set at $9.95 per month or $99.95 for a year.

Palin remains active elsewhere as a Fox News Channel contributor and reality-TV personality.

The Sarah Palin Channel is part of the TAPP video platform, which launched earlier this year.

[Sunday July 27th  2014  4th  EDITION  5:35 P.M.]

US gas prices fall 9 cents to $3.58
CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) — A national survey finds the average U.S. price of regular-grade gasoline has plummeted 9 cents a gallon over the past two weeks to $3.58.

That's the largest drop this year.

Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg said Sunday the decrease came despite a rise in crude-oil prices.

Lundberg says U.S. refiners, enjoying plentiful supplies, aggressively cut wholesale prices to chase sales.

Midgrade averages were $3.78, and premium averages were $3.93.

The U.S. average retail diesel price is down 4 cents per gallon, to $3.90.

The lowest average price in the lower 48 states was $3.23 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The highest was $4.03 in San Francisco.

According to Gas Buddy dot com, the average price for regular gas in Alaska on Sunday was $4.12, with the lowest in the state found in Anchorage at $3.92 and he highest in Denali Park at $4.71, while In Juneau the highest price for regular unleaded was $4.35.

Fire at Anchorage playground investigated
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A large plume of black smoke that rose over Anchorage Saturday afternoon was caused by a fire at a playground.

KTUU News reports that the blaze is under investigation. The cause of the fire is not yet known.

The fire covered a 150-foot by 100-foot section of the playground, which was compromised of rubberized material.

Fire Captain Zack Westin says that material is highly flammable.

Westin says the material is nice and soft for running around, but it can catch fire.

No children were believed to be at the playground during the fire, and no injuries have been reported.

Subsistence Alaska village fights mining road
ALLAKAKET, Alaska (AP) — After another year of abysmal king salmon runs, with rain-swollen rivers making it near-impossible to catch chum or silvers and with decades of declining moose and caribou populations, the residents of Allakaket are bristling at the prospect of a 200-mile industrial road running through their hunting and fishing grounds.

The Fairbanks News-Miner reports the village is opposing a multi-million mining road that would have 15 major river crossings, including over the Alatna River, where Allakaket residents fish. The propose road would spanfrom the Dalton Highway to the Ambler Mining District in Northwest Alaska.

The road is being championed by the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority and the Ambler Mining District by Canada-based NovaCopper, which is eyeing what it estimates to be hundreds of millions of tons of copper, zinc and lead in the area.

Troop 6 Yukon Trip - leaving from the Auke Bay Ferry Terminal early Saturday morning

Judge strikes down DC ban on handguns outside home
WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal judge has ruled that the District of Columbia's ban on carrying handguns outside the home is unconstitutional.

In a 19-page ruling made public Saturday, U.S. District Judge Frederick J. Scullin concluded that the Second Amendment gives people the right to carry a gun outside their home for self-defense.

The lawsuit challenging the city's ban was filed in 2009 by three District of Columbia residents, a New Hampshire resident and the Washington state-based Second Amendment Foundation.

The group's lawyer, Alan Gura, said he was pleased with the decision. The city has the option to appeal the ruling.


[Saturday July 26th  2014  7th  EDITION 3:50 P.M.]

Yukon River king salmon returns see improvement
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Alaska fisheries managers say it appears they have achieved their goal of getting a sufficient number of Yukon River king salmon to their Canadian spawning grounds.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that the number of king salmon counted as of this week by a sonar located near the village of Eagle near the border stood at 49,231.

That surpasses the minimum goal of 42,500 kings called for in the Pacific Salmon Treaty between the United States and Canada.

This marks the first time in three years that the goal has been reached.

The decline in king salmon has led to fishing restrictions for subsistence fishermen who live along the river and depend on the salmon for food.

Kenai hospitals in spat over patient agreements
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — The Surgery Center of Kenai recently opened its doors to patients, but not everyone can be treated at the new hospital.

The Peninsula Clarion reports that because Central Peninsula Hospital won't enter a transfer agreement with the center, it cannot perform procedures on Medicare and Medicaid patients.

Outpatient surgery center vice president Harold Gear tells the newspaper that when the center was beginning construction, it requested agreements with Alaska Regional Hospital, Providence Alaska Medical Center and Central Peninsula Hospital. He says Central Peninsula ignored the request and later said no.

Central Peninsula Hospital CEO Rick Davis says he doesn't see any benefits for CPH in a transfer agreement with the surgery center. Davis says while Medicaid and Medicare patients are low-payers, CPH is "very happy" to treat them.

Alaska woman indicted in prostitution ring
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A grand jury has indicted an Alaska woman on seven felonies related to a prostitution ring she allegedly operated between Anchorage, Fairbanks, Kenai and Juneau.

Prosecutors said Friday that 39-year-old Amber L. Batts of Anchorage was charged with three counts of second-degree sex trafficking and four counts of third-degree sex trafficking. She was indicted on Wednesday.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Batts allegedly supervised an online system that marketed women for sex acts throughout Alaska.

Authorities say Butts got a cut of the money exchanged for the sex acts. Batts was arrested on July 9.

Alaska Communications restores service
Heather Cavanaugh Director, Communications and Marketing for Alaska Communications reports that as of 2:15 a.m. Sat., July 26, most all services in Southeast have been restored.

They continue to monitor their network and work to ensure all customers are up and running.

They thank their customers for their understanding and patience and their teams who worked throughout the night to restore service.

American Legion state tournament Mulcahy Stadium, Anchorage

Friday’s results 
Dimond 7, Chugiak 5
Juneau 13, Service 8 
Kenai 9, Eagle River 5
South 11, Wasilla 6

Saturday’s games 
1 p.m. – Chugiak vs. Service 
4 p.m. – Eagle River vs. Wasilla 

Sunday’s games 
1 p.m. – Dimond vs. Juneau 
4 p.m. – Kenai vs. South 

Judge: 60 days' notice of EPA plans not needed
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A federal judge says the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency does not have to give the group behind the proposed Pebble Mine 60 days' advance notice of any further action it might take with regard to the project.

The Pebble Limited Partnership has sued EPA, alleging it exceeded its authority by invoking a process through which it could restrict or prohibit development of the Pebble deposit before the project goes through permitting.

Pebble requested the advance notice after EPA proposed restrictions on development.

While U.S. District Court Judge H. Russel Holland declined to require 60 days' notice of the next step EPA plans to take, he said he expects attorneys to keep each other and the court informed on matters likely to affect scheduling in the case.

UPDATE: Alaska Communications service
According to a statement by Heather Cavanaugh, Director Marketing and Corporate Communications;

Alaska Communications is beginning to restore wireless and Internet service in Southeast. Customers should begin seeing their service return at this time. They expect most services will be restored over the weekend and continue to make that their top priority and will provide updates as they make progress.

Alaska Communications customers experienced service interruptions Friday due to the earthquake centered near Elfin Cove.

[Friday July 25th  2014  14th  EDITION 10:20 P.M.]

UPDATE:  House on fire
Capital City Fire Rescue responded with fire trucks and ambulances at 6:20 PM today to a fully engulfed home near Twin Lakes.  According to the fire department's online bulletin, the address is 4309 Glacier Highway.  Smoke could be seen from the Juneau Radio Center. 

Juneau Police say traffic was being blocked Friday evening in the area between Mountainside Drive and Bauer Lane. 

According to scanner reports, there were no injuries and neighboring structures are not affected.

Assistant Fire Chief Brian Long says the first fire units arrived 7 minutes after being dispatched and found the single family home fully engulfed in flames. The fire was under control in 40 minutes. One firefighter sustained minor injuries when a de-energized power line dropped on the scene. Capital City Fire Rescue deployed two engines, one ladder truck, two ambulances, one heavy rescue, and several other support units to bring the situation under control. All of the home's occupants were found safe.

Many details of the fire's origins are still unknown and the fire is still under investigation.


(Pictures above courtesy of KINY's Kelly Peres, Lynn Campbell, Rob Kindred, and Lori James)

(Picture above courtesy of KINY's facebook friend Rinny Beth)

BP reaches settlement on oil-related spills
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — BP Exploration Alaska has agreed to settle a complaint with the state and federal governments over four oil-related spills on Alaska's North Slope from 2007 to 2011.

The complaint and proposed settlement were filed in federal court Friday. The proposed settlement calls for a $450,000 penalty, $180,100 of which would go to the state with the rest to the federal government.

BP Alaska spokeswoman Dawn Patience said BP's share would be about $118,000, reflecting the company's ownership share at Prudhoe Bay. The other owners at Prudhoe are Exxon Mobil, ConocoPhillips and Chevron.

She said BP is glad to have resolved the matter and is focused on operating the field in a "safe, reliable and compliant manner."

There will be a 30-day public comment on the proposed settlement.

Judge rules feds wrongly protecting bearded seals
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A federal judge in Alaska has ruled that a federal agency improperly listed bearded seals as threatened under the Endangered Species Act.

Judge Ralph Beistline in Fairbanks says the decision by the National Marine Fisheries Services was "arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion."

The state, the Alaska Oil and Gas Association and the North Slope Borough sued after the agency added bearded seals and ringed seals in the Arctic Ocean to the threatened list in December 2012. Polar bears also are listed because of a loss of sea ice.

Alaska Attorney General Michael Geraghty says the listing "was based solely on speculative 100-year projections that lacked any credible scientific evidence."

Fisheries officials didn't immediately return a message seeking comment.

The state didn't challenge the listing for ringed seals.

UPDATE:  wrecks on Egan
Juneau Police say there were two wrecks this afternoon around 4:30 on Egan near Fred Meyer.

The second wreck was due to traffic congestion caused by the first wreck.   Police reports do not list anyone being transferred to the hospital.

UPDATE: Alaska Communications outage, repair in progress
News of the North spoke with Hannnah Blankenship, Associate Manager of Corporate Communications for Alaska Communications, this morning and again this afternoon.

At 3:22 this afternoon she said, "We were able to confirm since this morning that the earthquake did damage one of our undersea optic cables and our crews are now working to repair that. It's our top priority and we'll give folks an update when we know more."

Earthquakes occur in 4 parts of Alaska
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Seismologists in Alaska say earthquakes have jolted four different parts of the state in the last 12 hours.

A magnitude-5.9 quake was among several that occurred around the same location early Friday in southeast Alaska. The U.S. Geological Survey says people in Juneau, about 100 miles east, felt light shaking.

An unrelated magnitude-4.3 earthquake was felt in Kodiak. No one reported feeling smaller, unrelated quakes in the Brooks Range region and in north-central Alaska.

There are no immediate reports of damage.

Alaska Earthquake Center seismologist Natasha Ruppert says it's somewhat unusual to have unrelated quakes strong enough to be felt in two parts of the state.

The magnitude-5.9 quake in southeast Alaska was immediately preceded by a magnitude-5.3 foreshock and several aftershocks.

No tsunami is expected.

Comments sought on possible Beaufort lease sale
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A federal agency is testing the waters on a possible new lease sale in the Alaska Arctic.

The U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management plans to take comments on areas in the Beaufort Sea that have the most promising oil and gas potential. The agency says it also wants to learn more about environmentally sensitive habitats and subsistence activities within the planning area.

Spokesman John Callahan says this is the first step in a long process, and no decision has been made on whether to go ahead with a lease sale.

The executive director of the Alaska Wilderness League says her group does not want to see more drilling in the Beaufort, citing the uncertainty of the arctic climate and lack of scientific information about the Arctic Ocean.

Parents sue company after son's avalanche death
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The parents of a 26-year-old snowboarder who died after an Alaska avalanche have filed a federal lawsuit against a heli-skiing company, alleging it failed to assess the danger in the area.

Nickolay Dobov of Truckee, California, died after the March 2012 Haines-area avalanche hit a group of skiers.

The Takhin Ridge avalanche also killed Rob Liberman of Telluride, Colorado, who was guiding the group for tour provider Alaska Heliskiing, based in Haines.

The Alaska Dispatch News says Natalia and Alex Dodov allege the company also failed to provide more than one guide and adequate radios, among other complaints.

A voicemail message left at a telephone number listed for the company was not immediately returned Friday.

The wrongful-death lawsuit was filed July 16. It seeks an unspecified amount of money

Complaint filed against critic of pot initiative
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Supporters of a ballot measure to legalize recreational use of marijuana have filed a complaint with the Alaska Public Offices Commission.

"The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol" says the group "Big Marijuana. Big Mistake" either violated disclosure laws or lied to the public about an advertising firm's role in the opposition effort.

"Big Marijuana. Big Mistake" has used advertising company Northwest Strategies. The company's majority owner and an opposition spokeswoman, Kristina Woolston, has said the ad firm was donating its time and services.

But the complaint says reports filed with the commission show Northwest Strategies being paid.

Woolston clarified that Northwest Strategies was being paid for its work but that the contract does not cover all expenses. She told the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner the complaint is a distraction.

ACS service outage
Alaska Communications is reporting various service outages due to the earthquake this morning.

They are working to determine the solution.

Updates can be found at and on Facebook and Twitter.

Here is a link to their outage statement. 

Alaska Supreme Court rules on survivor benefits for same-sex partners
The Alaska Supreme Court has ruled that a woman is entitled to survivor benefits from the employer of her same-sex partner.

The Alaska Dispatch reports that the court issued a ruling today (fri) in a lawsuit brought by Deborah Harris.

Her partner, Kerry Fadely, was murdered in 2011 by a disgruntled co-worker at the Millennium Hotel in Anchorage.
Under state law, spouses can receive survivor benefits if a husband or wife dies in a work-related injury, but same-sex couples are not allowed to marry in Alaska.

The state's highest court ruled that excluding same-sex partners violates the right to equal protection and lacks a relationship to the purpose of the workers
compensation statute.

Anchorage trail temporally closed for repairs
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 7-mile stretch of Anchorage's popular coastal trail will be closed eight hours a day for repairs most of next week.

The southern section of the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail will be closed between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. starting Tuesday and continuing through Friday.

Officials say the trail will be open during other hours to accommodate bike commuters and others who want to use the entire trail.

The work is set to take place between the Anchorage Water and Wastewater Utility at Hutson Drive and the Sisson Bridge to the south.

Officials say there will be no available detour route to or from Kincaid Park because of the trail's isolation.

The work is part of the city's trail improvement projects. Last year, some of the coastal trail was resurfaced.

Man shoots, kills bear
An Eagle River man shot & killed a brown bear that mauled him near his home.

The Alaska Dispatch reports that the man was walking dogs near Hiland Road Thursday, when the dogs came running back with a brown bear sow chasing after them.

The man, whose name was not released, sustained unspecified injuries in the attack.

He fired three shots from a 44-magnum pistol. The bear was later found dead in the woods.

It's the second brown bear attack in the Anchorage area within a week, after a National Guard soldier was injured during a training exercise on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.

UPDATE:Quakes shake SE Alaska near Juneau
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Two quakes occurred in the same location early Friday in southeast Alaska, and the U. S. Geological Survey reports weak or light shaking was felt around Juneau, about 100 miles to the east. There are no reports of damage.

The USGS recorded a magnitude 5.9 quake at 2:54 a.m. and a 4.7 quake at 3:19 a.m. about 50 miles west of Gustavus and 90 miles southwest of Haines. Both were about 6 miles deep.

The National Weather Service said no tsunami expected.

Earthquake greets Southeast Friday morning
An earthquake shook Southeast Alaska this morning around 2:54.

The quake measured a magnitude of 6.04 at a depth of 8 miles.

The epicenter was located 30 miles WNW of Elfin Cove or some 96 miles west of Juneau.

We have had several aftershocks including a 4.89 tremblor at 3:19.

EDMONTON - New research suggests a major oil spill in Canada's western Arctic would likely spread quickly and foul oceans around Alaska and possibly as far west as Russia.

The research, funded by the World Wildlife Fund, comes as the National Energy Board prepares to consider blowout prevention plans in two separate proposals for offshore energy drilling.

The authors considered 22 different oil-spill scenarios in the Beaufort Sea, off the northwest coast of the Northwest Territories.

They found that in all cases there would be at least an up to 50 per cent chance that an oily slick would spread into Alaska.

In the case of a blowout, it's almost certain that oil would spread across international boundaries, with an up to a 25 per cent chance of affecting Russia.

Subsurface oil contamination from a blowout would also be highly likely to spread into Alaska.

The energy board is considering proposals from Imperial Oil and Chevron Canada for offshore drilling in the Arctic.

Current rules require them to have a second drill rig nearby to promptly sink a pressure-relieving well in the case of a blowout, which would make capping it much easier.

Both companies are proposing methods they say would be equally effective and much cheaper.

The board has agreed to consider their alternatives.

Gov asks USDA to buy surplus canned pink salmon
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell has asked a federal agency to buy $37 million of canned pink salmon to ease a glut weighing down prices for Alaska fishermen.

Parnell made the request to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

He asked that USDA make the purchase under a federal law that allows for buying surplus foods from farmers and donating them to food banks or other programs. USDA made a similar, smaller purchase of salmon earlier this year.

But Parnell said remaining unsold inventories are driving prices to levels that threaten harvest activity this year and next.

He said the price of canned pink salmon is 23 percent lower than a year ago and the advance price paid to fishermen is down about 33 percent from last year.

[Thursday July 24th  2014  14TH  EDITION 4:00 P.M.]

New rules for headlights in place for Southeast
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — Drivers on sections of highway in southeast Alaska will be required to use their headlights, even during the day.

State transportation department spokesman Jeremy Woodrow says it's a safety measure the department has already instituted further north and is now introducing in Southeast.

KRBD reports the new rule will apply to sections of road in Ketchikan, Wrangell, Petersburg, Sitka, Juneau and Haines, as well as on Prince of Wales Island.

Woodrow says using headlights at all times in these corridors could help reduce crash rates by alerting bicyclists, pedestrians and other motorists to oncoming vehicles.

He says this isn't meant to be a "gotcha campaign." Woodrow says state Troopers have indicated they would generally enforce the rule by reminding drivers of the need to turn on their lights.

Public workshop on Juneau's senior community needs
There's a task force in Juneau concerned with the needs of our Seniors.

They are having a public workshop addressing the housing and support service needs of Juneau’s seniors Tuesday evening, July 29th, from 6 - 9 at Centennial Hall.

Margaret O’Neal, Director of Operations with the Juneau Economic Development Council, says there will be lots of information to share about the ongoing demand study.

Murkowski Urges Relief from FEMA Red Tape for Juneau Development
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski today reminded the Federal Emergency Management Agency of Alaska’s concerns with the “illogical” and “incorrect” methods being used to determine the flood risk of private homes.

During a Senate Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee hearing Wednesday, Murkowski also stressed how one-size-fits-all FEMA regulations are chilling economic development in Juneau, by including protected shoreline in a category meant to apply to at-risk coastal cities.

When Murkowski questioned FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate on the frustrations raised by Alaskans in the Capital City, she told him:

The City and Borough of Juneau claim that they should be permitted to develop in the [endangered] zone because they’re in a very protected position as an island community within the Inside Passage there in the Southeast. The National Flood Insurance Policy regulations put an absolute block in the velocity zone. Juneau has acknowledged that it’s going to stifle their ability to develop at all….Is FEMA willing to work with Juneau on this?

Fugate told Murkowski that FEMA was willing to work with Juneau, because they are always seeking to improve and balance their policies.

Administrator Fugate informed Senator Murkowski that because of the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act which was recently signed into law and innovations in technology, the tools that FEMA uses to assess threat risk and insurance rates will be dramatically improved in the near future.

Cutter helps Diomede by taking recyclables
NOME, Alaska (AP) — Residents of a remote Alaska island close to Russia have enlisted the help of the Coast Guard to transport some recyclables.

KNOM radio reports the Coast Guard cutter SPAR got an unusual request from Diomede residents when the crew made a visit as part of a survey of the Chukchi Sea.

They were asked to take some electronic waste from the island for recycling, things like monitors, DVD players, stereos.

Doug Jannusch, the commanding officer, said they couldn't take much, but were glad to help out by taking about 200 pounds of the goods for recycling.

Diomede is located on Little Diomede Island, about 3 miles from Big Diomede Island, Russia, in the Bering Strait. Residents typically ship recyclables to Nome, and they are eventually sent to Seattle.

Snow forecast for northern Alaska
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — It may still officially be summer, but there's snow in the forecast for northern Alaska.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the National Weather Service says several inches of snow could fall on the southeastern Brooks Range Thursday night and Friday.

Snow is predicted above the 2,000 foot elevation and west of the Dalton Highway near Coldfoot, or 250 miles north of Fairbanks.

Weather service meteorologist Cary Freeman says the 1-3 inches predicted is outside the norm for late July.

A lower pressure system north of the Arctic coast is behind the extreme weather that includes heavy rain in the central Alaska Range area, from the Richardson Highway west to Denali National Park and Preserve.

Growing influx of musk oxen prompts Alaska hunt
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A growing influx of musk oxen in the western Alaska town of Nome has prompted wildlife officials to open a subsistence hunt early for the large shaggy animals.

Officials, however, say only five animals can be killed beginning Aug. 1 because the population in the entire region is shrinking significantly yearly, and the stock must be conserved.

That's little consolation to Nome residents, who say the oxen have trampled dogs and created traffic hazards.

State biologist Tony Gorn says he doesn't believe that hunting a few local musk oxen will create a dent among about 150 animals to be loitering locally.

Bears preying on musk oxen likely drove the creatures to the town of 3,600 starting about five years ago. Nome is located 540 miles northwest of Anchorage.

Alaska tourist train halts runs after derailment
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Officials now say 19 people were seen for minor injuries when a tourist train derailed in southeast Alaska — an increase from the initial report of nine injuries.

The people were seen at a clinic in Skagway after the White Pass and Yukon Route vintage train derailed Wednesday just shy of the Canada-U.S. border, on the American side.

Four cars left the tracks, and two people landed in a lake.

Passenger Joe Gilsinger tells The Skagway News he watched the train car in front of him slowly slide off the tracks. Then his car started to derail.

Train service has been suspended for the investigation.

Man fined after his dog killed smaller dog
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A Juneau-area dog owner has been fined for not being able to prevent his mastiff-pit bull mix from killing a smaller dog.

Jody Vick of Douglas was fined $150. Judge Keith Levy (LEE'-vee) found Vick guilty of "objectionable menacing" and other minor offenses for failing to comply with subsequent demands by Animal Control.

The charges are all non-criminal infractions, stemming from an attack last year that left the smaller dog dead.

Vick did not deny his dog attacked, but Vick said the smaller dog, a Shih Tzu-Pomeranian mix, provoked it.

Levy said that wasn't a valid defense.

Animal Control deemed Vick's dog dangerous, a designation that Vick is contesting.

Miller brings in nearly $130K in Senate bid
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Joe Miller brought in nearly $130,000 during the last fundraising quarter.

Miller spent nearly as much, about $121,000, but still had just over $300,000 on hand. Miller came into the race with money left over from his unsuccessful 2010 U.S. Senate run.

Miller also reported a $17,000 debt.

Miller is one of the three highest profile Republicans seeking the party's nomination next month for the seat held by Democrat Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election.

Republican Dan Sullivan raised nearly $1.2 million and had $1.7 million available as of June 30. Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell has not provided fundraising details.

The filing deadline was July 15.

Begich reported bringing in more than $1.26 million and having about $2.2 million available.

UPDATE: Alaska tourist train halts runs after derailment
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A vintage rail company that hauls hundreds of thousands of tourists every year along the route of the historic Klondike Gold Rush has suspended operations while it investigates a derailment that injured nine people.

The derailment occurred during the Wednesday afternoon run of the White Pass & Yukon Route tourist train, which goes from Skagway, Alaska, into Canada.

There were few immediate details of what happened, but railroad President John Finlayson said the train derailed as it reached the White Pass Summit.

The company said the derailment involved two vintage locomotives and four passenger rail cars.

Power was restored to the train, and it brought everyone back to Skagway, about 100 miles northwest of Juneau.

Skagway tourism director Buckwheat Donahue said that most of the injuries were "scratches and bruises."

Fairbanks pollution initiative to appear on ballot
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Enough signatures have been gathered for a ballot initiative seeking to renew a law preventing the Fairbanks North Star Borough from regulating air pollution.

The "Home Heating Protection Initiative" will appear on the October municipal ballot.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner says it's the third in a series of initiatives that have barred the borough from imposing regulations on home heating devices since 2010.

The borough cannot alter any voter-approved ballot initiatives for two years. The last initiative passed in 2012.

The efforts have been largely spearheaded by state Rep. Tammie Wilson, a North Pole Republican, and borough Assembly member Michael Dukes.

Wilson says the state should shoulder the responsibility of cleaning up the borough's air through regulation.

Opponents say local control can be more flexible and responsive.

Tok man dies in Alaska Highway crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a 55-year-old Tok man has died in a single-vehicle rollover on the Alaska Highway.

Troopers say they responded Tuesday afternoon to the crash of a Ford pickup about 44 miles from Tok.

Troopers say the driver of the truck, Michael Verhoff, died at the scene.

Troopers investigate assault on fishing vessel
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say they are investigating an assault aboard a fishing vessel in Petersburg.

Troopers say they responded Wednesday to a report that the 28-year-old captain of the vessel Favorite grabbed a 31-year-old crew member around the throat.

Troopers say the crew member has left the vessel.

Setnet initiative
Sponsors may begin collecting signatures for a proposed ballot initiative to ban "setnet" fishing in urban parts of Alaska.

A Superior Court Judge ruled in favor of the Alaska Fisheries Conservation Alliance, which had filed a lawsuit challenging the denial of the petition application.

The Lieutenant Governor's office had denied the application in January based on a legal review that treated the ban as a transfer salmon from one user group to another.

Initiative sponsors argued that voters should be able to decide the issue. Sponsors hope to be able to gather signatures over the next year to put the "setnetting" ban on the 2016 ballot.

If approved, it would ban the nets anchored on a beach and stretched perpendicular to the shore in urban, non-subsistence areas, including Anchorage, the Mat-Su, Kenai Peninsula, Valdez, Fairbanks, and Juneau.

Parnell appoints Corey to Anchorage bench
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell has appointed a private practice attorney to the Anchorage Superior Court.

Michael Corey will replace Judge Sen Tan, who is retiring.

Parnell said Corey has an extensive background in litigation and has demonstrated his commitment to the community through coaching.

According to biographical information provided by Parnell's office, Corey has practiced law for 28 years, most recently at the firm Jermain, Dunnagan and Owens, P.C.

Corey also is an assistant coach of the Service High School varsity hockey team.

[Wednesday July 23rd  2014  16TH  EDITION 10:01 P.M.]

Minor injuries after Alaska tourist train derails
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A popular tourist train derailed Wednesday in southeast Alaska, injuring up to a dozen passengers.

White Pass and Yukon Railroad President John Finlayson tells The Associated Press that the injured are being treated at a clinic in the tourist town of Skagway, about 100 miles northwest of Juneau.

A state Homeland Security official, David Lee, tells KTUU-TV that the injuries don't appear to be life-threatening.

Finlayson says railroad crews got power to the train, and it was able to return to Skagway with all the passengers. It wasn't immediately clear how many cars derailed.

He says the train is a popular tourist attraction, taking passengers on a three-hour, 40-mile roundtrip tour out of Skagway. It climbs to 2,865 feet at White Pass Summit, where the derailment occurred.

The cause remains under investigation.

SEARHC hosts presentation in Sitka on obtaining and using health insurance
SITKA, July 14, 2014 – SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) is hosting a free presentation to assist those that have signed up for insurance through the Affordable Care Act Health Insurance Marketplace and would like to know more about how their insurance works.

The free presentation is on Thursday, July 24th, from noon to 1:00pm at UAS, in Room 106.

SEARHC reaches settlement with U.S. Indian Health Service
JUNEAU, July 23, 2014 – SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) has reached an agreement with the U.S. Indian Health Service (IHS) to settle SEARHC’s outstanding claims against the IHS for unpaid contract support costs (CSC). Under the agreement, the IHS has agreed to pay SEARHC $39.5 million plus interest, totaling approximately $53 million, to settle the organization’s CSC claims for the years 1999 through 2013.
SEARHC is a tribal health organization that compacts with the IHS under the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (ISDEAA) to carry out the federal government's obligation to provide health care services to the Alaska Native and American Indian people of Southeast Alaska. Contract support costs consist of those reasonable program expenses as well as other administrative and overhead costs associated with carrying out the health care services SEARHC provides on behalf of the IHS. These costs are required to be paid in full under the ISDEAA, SEARHC’s compact with the IHS, and recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions. SEARHC’s CSC claims arose from the IHS’ failure to pay these costs in full, which required SEARHC to utilize program funds meant to provide direct health care services to SEARHC patients in order to meet the shortfall. This settlement resolves SEARHC’s claims for 15 years of CSC underpayments by the IHS and will now permit SEARHC to devote more resources to providing direct health care services.

“This is a very good settlement and has concluded several years of legal wrangling and political advocacy in Washington, DC. I could not be more pleased to have these issues come to resolution and look forward to focusing our efforts in a more constructive direction,” said SEARHC President and CEO, Charles Clement.

SEARHC would like to recognize the efforts of Alaska Senators Mark Begich and Lisa Murkowski, and Congressman Don Young in working to hold IHS accountable for full payment of contract support costs and encouraging timely resolution of tribes’ and tribal organizations’ outstanding CSC claims. SEARHC is also appreciative of the commitment made by President Obama's Administration to honor Tribal contracts in the future.

Coast Guard, good Samaritans rescue 11 boaters in Alaska
Good Samaritans, with Coast Guard coordination, rescued 11 people from boating emergencies in four separate cases across Southern Alaska, Tuesday.

Sector Anchorage watchstanders received a mayday from the crew of the vessel Alaska Rose, that their vessel was on fire on the southwest side of Resurrection Bay with three people aboard. Good Samaritans quickly responded and transferred all personnel before the vessel became completely engulfed and sank. On-scene vessels reported a small sheen and very little debris. The boaters were safely transported to Seward.

In a separate case, Sector Anchorage watchstanders received a report from boaters on the vessel Poker Dogs, stating that they were taking on water in the vicinity of Port Wells with three people aboard. A good Samaritan nearby responded to the captain’s request for assistance and safely escorted the vessel back to Whittier.

Approximately four hours later, Sector Anchorage watchstanders received a report from a person on a 19-foot vessel, explaining that they were taking on water in the vicinity of Blackstone Bay with three people aboard. The operator was able to beach the vessel to prevent it from sinking. A good Samaritan overheard the initial call, responded and assisted in securing the vessel before transporting all three boaters to Whittier.

Coast Guard 17th District command center watchstanders in Juneau received a call on VHF-FM Channel 16 from boaters on the 26-foot fishing vessel Oracle after it became disabled due to an overheated engine with two people aboard. Sector Juneau issued a Marine Assistance Rescue Broadcast and placed the vessel on a 30-minute communications schedule. Good Samaritans aboard the fishing vessel Crista C responded and towed the Oracle safely to Haines.

Governor's Picnic Pics

KINY's Kendall Weaver interviewing the governor

Governor Sean Parnell being interviewed by News of the North's Lynn Campbell

Cruise passengers recount horror stories to Senate
WASHINGTON (AP) — A California woman called for more protections for passengers on cruise lines as she recounted before Congress the assault she suffered during a trip aboard a cruise ship.

She told senators during a hearing Wednesday on Capitol Hill that she was choked and raped on a Royal Caribbean cruise by one of the line's employees.

She says that passengers have virtually no rights or protections.

Democratic Sen. Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia says her experience and other horror stories recounted at the hearing point to a lack of oversight and accountability for passenger safety in the cruise industry.

Rockefeller introduced a bill last year to improve protections for passengers on cruise ships. The hearing Wednesday was the second he has called to raise awareness of the issue.

Juneau cruise ship assault
Alaska State Troopers in Juneau responded to a report of an assault on the Holland America Line's Cruise Ship "Osterdam" Wednesday morning around 9:00.

A 78 year old male passenger from Nevada pushed a 13 year old male passenger from Virginia in a hallway on board the vessel.

This case is still under investigation.

Sullivan campaign reserves post-primary air time
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Dan Sullivan has reserved some air time past the Aug. 19 primary.

Records filed with the Federal Communications Commission show Sullivan's campaign reserved time in the fall on at least two TV stations.

Sullivan spokesman Mike Anderson says the campaign is not assuming anything but fully expects Sullivan to be the nominee. He said, as such, the campaign needs to be ready to fight on Aug. 20.

Anderson said by email that it's a smart strategy given the intense competition for post-primary airtime.

Sullivan is one of the three highest-profile candidates vying for the Republican nomination. The others are Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller.

Democratic Sen. Mark Begich is seeking re-election.

Begich: Action needed on veterans bill
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Mark Begich says price shouldn't be the issue in passing legislation to address veterans' health care.

Concerns have been raised at the cost of a Senate proposal to build new clinics, hire new doctors and help veterans who can't get timely appointments to get outside care. Begich sits on the House-Senate conference committee charged with reaching agreement on a bill. He expressed frustration Wednesday that the panel has only met once and some members of Congress are balking at the cost.

He said members of Congress "didn't blink an eye" at spending $2 trillion on sending Americans to war.

He said those who want to "nickel and dime" veterans don't understand what they've done for the country or understand the government's obligation to provide the care they earned.

Relative of historic mining figure visits memorial
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — An Italian relative of the man whose discovery of gold in Interior Alaska helped spark the Fairbanks gold rush helped rededicate a monument to the discovery.

Adriano Pedroni was one of five Italians from Felice Pedroni's hometown of Fanano, Italy, who were on hand for Sunday's event.

Felice Pedroni is most commonly known in America as Felix Pedro. According to the Alaska Mining Hall of Fame Foundation, Pedro's discovery led to the 1902 Fairbanks gold rush. Pedro is also considered one of Fairbanks' founding fathers.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the stone monument honoring Pedro was installed in 1952. It has been rededicated annually by members of the organization Pioneers of Alaska.

North Pole man faces animal cruelty charges
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A North Pole man faces animal cruelty charges after four severely malnourished horses were found on his property.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports charges were filed Friday against Thomas Patrick Fisher. Alaska State Troopers began investigating after four horses were reported loose July 2 and seized by authorities the next day.

A veterinarian's report says the horses were malnourished and in poor to very poor condition due to abuse and neglect. Troopers say they couldn't find any horse feed on Fisher's property, and one hose had a leg wound so severe it couldn't put any weight on it.

Online court records didn't list an attorney for him and his home phone wasn't operating correctly Wednesday.

Fisher had a business license until 2009 for a venture called "Alaska Horseback Guides."

Arguments set in challenge to gay marriage ban
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Arguments are scheduled for October in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Alaska's ban on same-sex marriage.

Five same-sex couples, four married outside of Alaska and one unmarried couple, sued to overturn the ban in May. Alaska voters approved a constitutional amendment in 1998 defining marriage as between one man and one woman.

The state, in its response, said Alaska isn't required to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. State attorneys also argue that Alaska, as a sovereign state, has the right to define and regulate marriage.

The case is being heard by U.S. District Court Judge Timothy Burgess.

The Oct. 10 arguments are set against the backdrop of judges in other states striking down bans similar to Alaska's as unconstitutional. A number of those decisions are being appealed.

Anchorage man arrested in traffic death
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 30-year-old is accused of providing alcohol to teenagers involved in a February traffic crash in Anchorage that killed one of them.

KTUU says Robert Lee Green III of Anchorage is charged with two felony counts of furnishing or delivering alcoholic beverages to minors. He was arrested Tuesday.

Seventeen-year-old Brandon Muller was pronounced dead at the scene of the Feb. 20 crash of an SUV he was driving. Two teenage passengers were injured.

Court documents say Green's actions directly contributed to the injury and/or death of another person while under the influence of alcohol.

The crash occurred after the SUV veered and hit a snow bank.

Police say the survivors and one other minor were charged with underage drinking.

Sarah Palin cited for speeding in Alaska hometown
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Sarah Palin is facing a $154 ticket for speeding in her hometown of Wasilla.

The former Alaska governor was pulled over July 16 and cited for driving between 10 and 19 mph over the speed limit.

The penalty includes a $144 fine and $10 police training surcharge.

An attorney for Palin said he didn't know details of the case but that Palin would pay the fine. A Wasilla Police Department spokesman did not immediately return a phone message seeking comment.

In discussing the ticket with TMZ, Palin made an auto racing reference, joking that she wasn't speeding, she was "qualifying."

Grand jury indicts 2 in lodge assault case
UNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A grand jury has returned indictments against two workers at a remote Alaska lodge after they allegedly threatened two guests with firearms.

The jury handed down assault and weapons misconduct charges Friday against 26-year-old Michael G. York of Denver and Devon G. Fernandez of Yakutat.

The two Icy Bay Lodge employees are accused of being intoxicated and brandishing a weapon June 27, when they confronted two people staying at the lodge and connected to a Diablo, California, gold exploration and mining company.

The Yakutat police chief had previously said the employees were upset over mining and its effects on Alaska, but court documents didn't list a reason for the confrontation.

An arraignment hearing was scheduled later Wednesday in Juneau for both men.

JPD's Crime of the Week
On July 17th, 2014, at about 5:50 in the afternoon, a 50 year old Juneau man reported someone had broken into his storage unit in the 1000 block of Salmon Creek Lane.

 Five firearms, four of them shotguns, were taken. The break in could have happened as early as March but likely happened shortly before July 14th, when a private security officer noticed the unit was unsecured and placed a lock on the door.

The victim had put his possessions in a storage unit while working out of town.

One firearm taken was a 20 gauge Benelli over and under with a unique blue foldable gun case that was locked. Another shotgun taken was an Ithaca 12 gauge side by side. There was also a Remington 20 gauge semi-auto shotgun and a Mossberg pump action shotgun taken. The last firearm taken was a very old .22 rifle.

The victim is also missing a bag of hockey gear including skates, pads, and a helmet. The suspect additionally took a black and silver racing bicycle, Tubbs brand snow shoes, and even a double mattress.

Anyone with information is encouraged to log on to the Juneau Crime Line Web site and report their tip. You may also call JPD at 586-0600. You may be eligible for a reward.

If you have information on this or any other crime, log on to

Cleanup of remote Alaska island underway
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — Cleanup of marine debris from a remote Alaska island is underway.

KMXT reports the effort on Tugidak Island is the second and final year of Kodiak Island Trails Network's debris removal project on the island.

The island is located southwest of the southern tip of Kodiak Island.

Network director Tom Pogson  says participants have been on the island now for two weeks.

Last year, the network collected 130 super sacks of marine debris from the island.

Pogson says 65 bags have already been collected so far this year in just seven days. Pogson says the crew spent the first week at the location setting up camp.

Man accused of stealing Alaska gold nugget
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A 32-year-old Northern California man is accused of stealing a $1,900 gold nugget from an Alaska mine where he was working.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Shaun Timothy Hull of Pollock Pines, California, is charged with felony theft after a Manley Hot Springs miner reported one of two nuggets discovered Saturday had been stolen.

According to a criminal complaint against Hull filed Monday, Hull's employer fired both workers.

The employer told authorities he asked Hull to turn out his pockets and that a 1.5 ounce nugget was found in his tobacco can. Authorities say Hull also had numerous bottles of gold concentrate in his luggage.

According to the complaint, Hull said he took the gold "because it was cool."

Former Bethel foster parent sentenced to 66 years
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — A former Bethel foster parent and day care operator has been sentenced to 66 years in prison in a child sexual abuse case.

KYUK reports that Peter Tony was sentenced Tuesday in Bethel on three consolidated child sexual abuse counts in which he pleaded guilty.

He will have no possibility of parole.

In a plea deal with prosecutors in February, the 70-year-old Tony pleaded guilty to charges of sexually abusing a minor in 2012 involving a 4-year-old girl his wife had in day care. He also pleaded guilty to the 1998 molestation of a 12-year-old girl.

He had faced seven felony counts.

Before running a small day care out of their home, Tony and his late wife Marylin were foster parents for 14 years until 1998.

Nome square closed for seeding project
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A famous green space in Nome has a little more orange to it.

KNOM reports temporary orange fencing has been placed around Anvil City Square. That's the area where the Old St. Joe's Hall and the giant gold pan sits, welcoming visitors to Nome.

New grass seed has been planted in the square and needs time to germinate. The fencing is intended to keep foot traffic and four-wheelers off the lawn this summer and snowmachines off it next winter.

The fencing should come down next year.

The grass seed is one phase of improvements planned at the square. City officials also will nearly double the size of the playground, adding new equipment and putting it on new rubber flooring.

The playground equipment is scheduled to arrive next month.

More fish added to 'unrestricted consumption' list
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The state health department has added more fish species to the "unrestricted consumption list."

This follows expanded fish testing data and epidemiological studies.

The updated guidelines are intended to help Alaskans — particularly parents and women of childbearing age — make healthful choices.

The manager of the environmental public health program says the guidelines continue to underscore the health benefits associated with eating fish.

The list already included all five species of Alaska salmon. Added species include halibut up to 40 pounds, lingcod measuring up to 35 inches, Arctic cisco, black rockfish, Dolly Varden and sablefish.

[Tuesday July 22nd  2014  14TH  EDITION 7:48 P.M.]

Governor's Family Picnics in Juneau and Ketchikan
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell and his wife, Sandy, will host the sixth annual Governor's Family Picnic Wednesday in Juneau.

The event will be held from 4:30-7:30 p.m. on Sandy Beach.

Free food will be the fare, including 200 pounds of salmon donated by John Moller. He's a commercial fisherman and also the governor's rural affairs adviser.

For those wanting more traditional picnic food, there will also be hot dogs, chips, and cookies.

The Parnells will help serve, as will members of his cabinet. Previous picnics have attracted more than 3,000 people in past years.4:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

The governor says, "Sandy and I look forward to meeting Alaskans across this amazing state. As we all enjoy the spectacular days of summer, won’t you join us and your fellow Alaskans at one of the Governor's Family Picnics."

Juneau - Wednesday, July 23
Sandy Beach Pavilion
4:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Ketchikan- Thursday, July 24
Ward Lake
4:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

Parking violations ordinance pulled, action delayed on Ski Board, pool board on ballot
The CBJ Assembly met last night in a regularly scheduled meeting. A resolution re-establishing the Juneau Local Emergency Planning Committee and adding a seat and alternate representing vulnerable populations passed 6-1. Of the ordinances scheduled for public hearing; the Secondhand Dealers ordinance was referred back to the Human Resources Committee and will see a public hearing in the August 11 meeting. The ordinance repealing the civil fine procedure and re-establishing certain parking and other violations as infractions was pulled because of a procedural issue.

The following ordinances were passed unanimously; funding to provide for commercial motor vehicle inspections, partial funding for the Alaska Juneau Gold Mine Power Tower Stabilization Project, partial funding for the Statter Harbor Launch Ramp and additional grant funding for the Alaska Mail Services Program.

The ordinance that garnered the most attention Monday night was an amendment that would grant the Ski Area Board the additional authority to manage and oversee the municipally-owned Treadwell Arena. The Assembly decided to delay action on this ordinance until next March.

There were several citizens who wanted to weigh in on the ordinance that would create an empowered board to operate and manage the municipally- owned aquatics facilities. Patty Ray, President of the Board of Trustees of the Glacier Swim Club, believes the "empowered board" would be a good idea for managing the pools. Lance Stevens, President-elect of the Juneau Chamber of Commerce reminded the board that their vote Monday night was only the first step in a process. The Assembly voted unanimously to pass the the ordinance, which will put it on the October 7 Municipal ballot.

Alaska sets record for number of visitors
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska has set a record for the number of tourists visiting the nation's northernmost state.

The State Division of Economic Development in a release says Alaska had 1.96 million visitors between May 1, 2013, and April 30, 2014.

That beats the previous mark by 5,000 visitors set during the 2007-2008 year.

There were 1.8 million visitors last year.

Commerce Commissioner Susan Bell attributes the increase to increased cruise ship calls in Alaska, and new national and international air service routes. The state also instituted an advertising campaign aimed at winter travelers.

Pebble wants notice of future EPA action
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The group behind the proposed Pebble Mine wants notification of any further action by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that would affect the project.

The request is part of a lawsuit by the Pebble Limited Partnership and Alaska Peninsula Corp.

The lawsuit alleges EPA exceeded its authority by invoking a process through which it could restrict or prohibit development of the Pebble deposit before the project goes through permitting.

EPA proposed restrictions that, while not outright banning mining of the Pebble deposit, would essentially block the type of project the mine's owners previously outlined.

The groups' attorneys say EPA received an extension for filing briefs without telling the court it was about to announce the proposed restrictions.

A Pebble spokesman said the proposed restrictions "amount to a de facto veto."

Jury convicts Anchorage man on meth charges
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - A 55-year-old Anchorage man has been convicted on charges he possessed and trafficked methamphetamine sent to him through the U.S. mail from Anaheim, California.

The U.S. attorney's office says in a release that a federal jury found David Alan Gonzales guilty on Monday in U.S. District Court in Anchorage. Sentencing was set for Oct. 9.

Authorities said 52 grams of pure meth as mailed to him from California and intercepted at a processing center.

A co-defendant, Albert Diaz Gumataotao, was previously sentenced to 12 years in a federal prison.

Eagle River man accused of threatening trooper
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 47-year-old Eagle River man is accused of threatening to shoot an Alaska State Trooper unless the officer left a property the man didn't own.

Lawrence Young is charged with assault, disorderly conduct, driving under the influence and refusing to take a chemical test.

KTUU reports the trooper was driving on the Parks Highway Saturday when he saw Young in a pickup apparently waving him over for assistance, then taking off.

Troopers say the officer found the truck in the driveway of a nearby property, where Young shouted at him to leave the property or he would shoot him.

According to troopers, Young refused to remove his hands from his pockets. Troopers say Young was found to be intoxicated. He was arrested.

It's unclear if Young has an attorney.

Recreational pot qualifies for Oregon ballot
SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon voters will be deciding this year whether to legalize marijuana for recreational use.

State elections officials certified Tuesday that the petitioners submitted enough valid signatures to qualify the measure for the November ballot.

Election workers say there were roughly 88,500 valid signatures — about 1,400 more than required.

The measure would allow adults 21 and older to buy and possess marijuana. It gives the Oregon Liquor Control Commission the job of regulating and taxing marijuana.

Voters rejected a legalization measure two years ago, but little money was spent promoting it. The group backing this year's effort has received contributions from some of the same donors who backed successful marijuana initiatives in Washington and Colorado.

Parnell leads gubernatorial rivals in cash on hand
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Byron Mallott (muh-LOT') brought in nearly $300,000 during the latest fundraising period, more than Republican Gov. Sean Parnell.

But Parnell had $450,000 available as of Friday. Mallott had about $66,000, plus $10,000 in debts.

Bill Walker, who is running as an independent, brought in nearly $260,000, $170,000 of which he personally contributed. He had about $115,000 available.

Mallott's total includes about $50,000 in personal contributions and $55,000 from the Alaska Democratic party.

Parnell raised more than $285,000, including $100,000 from the state GOP, which endorsed him last year. The reporting period spanned from Feb. 2 through July 18.

Russ Millette (muh-LET'), one of Parnell's challengers in the Aug. 19 primary, reported raising $3,500 since announcing his plans to run in May. He had about $1,300 on hand.

Work starts on road to Tanana
TANANA, Alaska (AP) — Work has started on the first Alaska road in two decades to connect a Bush community to the road system.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports a kickoff celebration was held Monday for the one-lane gravel road, which will connect Manley Hot Springs to Tanana.

The $11 million road project is scheduled to be completed by December 2015, and is intended to be part of the eventual road to Nome. However, there are no plans in the works to extend the road beyond Tanana.

The road also doesn't quite make it to Tanana. The gravel lane will end on the south bank of the Yukon River, six miles upstream from Tanana. There's no plans now for a bridge, meaning people will have to take a 20-minute boat ride to Tanana.

Juneau-area harbor getting an update
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Work is scheduled to begin in October on an update to a Juneau-area harbor.

Statter Harbor, at Auke Bay, is set to get a sea walk, picnic pavilion and added parking. The idea is to provide a park-like feel once construction is complete.

This fall, plans call for hauling sand and rock to the site to stabilize the foundation on which the structures will rest.

Bidding for the stabilization project should begin next month.

The update of the harbor has been years in the making and is part of a 20-year master plan for Auke Bay.

Phase one, which cost $8 million, finished last year. This next phase is expected to cost $12 million.

Boy reaches plea deal in musk oxen killings
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A 12-year-old Brevig (Bre vick) Mission boy has reached a plea deal with state prosecutors in the 2012 killings of musk oxen.

KNOM reports the boy and another boy have been charged in connection with the deaths of seven musk oxen. Authorities say the boys chased the animals with four-wheelers and shot them with rifles over several days.

The names of the boys have not been released because of their ages.

The boys were charged in January with multiple counts of wanton waste of big game.

In a plea deal reached Friday, the boy agreed to forfeit all equipment used in the killings. He also will have to pay $3,000 in restitution and will remain on probation for one year.

The other boy's case remains open.

Troopers suspend search for missing village man
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say they've suspended their participation in the search for a 21-year-old Brevig Mission man who went missing one week ago.

Searchers found the clothing of Clarence Ray Olanna soon after he disappeared, but no other sign of him.

Olanna was last seen by his family July 15.

According to troopers, Olanna's clothing was found the following day on the shore near the western Alaska village.

The search for Olanna has involved four-wheelers, boats and an Alaska Army National Guard helicopter.

Sen. Murkowski visits US-Mexico border
Senator Lisa Murkowski says her trip to the U-S / Mexico border has shown her that the Federal government should be processing migrant children with greater efficiency.

Murkowski visited McAllen, Texas, with a bipartisan delegation on Friday, as well as Lackland Air Force Base, where many of the children are being housed.

About 57-thousand unaccompanied children, mostly fleeing violence in Central American countries, have crossed the border over the past year at double the previous rate.

In an interview with the Alaska Dispatch, Murkowski said enforcing laws while having a -quote- "humanitarian heart" are not mutually exclusive.

She says the situation may demand a change to a 2008 law that requires a lengthier review process, as opposed to the quicker process for children from Mexico.

Four Businesses Recognized for Beautifying Downtown
Juneau, Alaska (July 22, 2014) – The Twilight Cafe on Willoughby Avenue will receive the first ever Storefront Star Award, taking home the Grand Prize for making improvements to their building and storefront. Improvements include repainting the building, improving access for customers and landscaping with flowers.

The Storefront Star Awards are a part of Juneau Economic Development Council’s Downtown Revitalization efforts to recognize businesses and building owners for their contributions to an attractive, safe and vibrant Downtown Juneau.

Entrants were judged on the extent to which the business made improvements that enhanced general safety and the pedestrian experience, as well as contributed to the improved appearance of the neighborhood.

Says Northwind Architect Evelyn Rousso of the Storefront Star Awards Steering Committee, “We chose the Twilight Cafe for the Grand Prize because the entry embodied the true spirit of the competition. Just think how the overall feeling of the city would be nicer if all downtown business owners improved both access to their entrances and the presentation of their windows.”

Catherine Hill Cristobal, owner with her husband said, “My husband and I were so excited to learn we had been selected! We had no idea when we made the improvements that we would win; we just wanted to do the most we could to improve the look of the building and make it easier for customers to enter the building. We had to be careful with our limited funds and decided that paint and plants and better access were our priorities. We really appreciate this recognition of our efforts to better serve our customers and improve the look of the Willoughby District.”

Awards were also given to Bruce Abel for his exterior redesign of the former Salvation Army building on West Willoughby, new home to the Heritage Roasterie, and to the Goldstein Development Co. for improving the corner of Front and Seward by re-engineering the entry and, especially, by providing canopy lighting. “Lighting and walkability are key to the pedestrian experience”, says Margo Waring, consultant with JEDC supporting Downtown Revitalization efforts, “and this project should encourage others to light their canopies to provide for a safer pedestrian experience.”

Residents used social networks to award a People’s Choice selection.

The 2014 award went to longtime local favorite Annie Kaill’s.

The Storefront Star Awards will be presented on Tuesday, July 22 at 1PM at the Twilight Caf?at 324 Willoughby Avenue, next door to Bullwinkles pizza. The public is welcome to attend.

The Storefront Star Awards are supported by the Juneau Economic Development Council, The Alaska Committee, the Downtown Business Association, Princess Tours, Tourism Best Management Practices, the CBJ Juneau Historic Resources Advisory Committee and the Southeast Alaska Chapter of the American Institutes of Architects.

The vision of the downtown revitalization effort, through collaboration with residents and businesses, is that residents will utilize the downtown area as a year-round hub for living, leisure, government and business.

Juneau businesses should contact JEDC for more information on the upcoming 2015 Awards.

Contact: Brian Holst, JEDC Executive Director, 523-2333. .

Alaska: woman dead, man hurt in Wasilla stabbing
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a 19-year-old Wasilla man has been arrested, accused of fatally stabbing a woman at a home where he was living and seriously injuring a man.

KTUU-TV reports that troopers found 66-year-old Wasilla resident Mollie Ragonesi dead when they responded early Monday to a report of a double stabbing at a home. They say a man who was stabbed is reported in stable condition.

Troopers say they think the younger man set fire to his bedroom in the home, then stabbed the woman and man multiple times before another man subdued him.

Troopers said Monday evening that Kenneth Adams was arrested for investigation of second-degree murder, attempted murder and arson. He was held on $500,000 bail.

Alaska Guard members leave for Africa mission
JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska (AP) — About 20 Alaska Air National Guard members are scheduled to deploy Tuesday to the Horn of Africa as part of Operation Enduring Freedom.

The soldiers are members of the guard's high-risk rescue crew, the 212th Rescue Squadron, or the 176th Operations Group. The guard says in a release that part of the mission is to support partner nation operations in East Africa to defeat extremist organizations.

They will replace about 25 Alaska Guard members who have been conducting missions in Africa since May.

This deployment is for about three months, and guardsmen should be back by early October.

UAF solicits contractors for new power plant
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The University of Alaska Fairbanks is seeking proposals from qualified firms interesting in providing for construction management and general contracting services for a heat and power plant project.

State lawmakers earlier this year approved a funding package for a new plant, considered a priority for the university.

The solicitation estimates the total construction cost at $150 million.

Rescue at Gates of the Arctic Park
JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska —Airmen with the Alaska Air National Guard’s 210th, 211th and 212th Rescue Squadrons rescued a man in Gates of the Arctic National Park, July 21.

The man had been rafting down the Kobuk River, northwest of Bettles, when his raft overturned, according to Capt. John Romspert, a controller with the Alaska Rescue Coordination Center.

“He was hiking and rafting using a pack-raft,” said Romspert. “He got himself into some big water and flipped over.”
Despite flipping his raft, the hiker managed to save his gear, Romspert explained. Among the gear the hiker packed was a personal locator beacon, which he used to contact the National Park Service.

“He had all of his gear, and when he looked at the remaining portion of the river he had to go through, he decided that he didn’t have the right equipment to continue down the river,” he said. “He was in a bad spot, and there was no way for him to get out.”

After contacting the National Park Service, the NPS concluded that they would need a helicopter to extricate the man from his location.

“The National Park Service didn’t have a helicopter, so they contacted us asking for assistance,” Romspert said.
The Air Guard accepted the mission and dispatched an HC-130 King aircraft from the 211th Rescue Squadron and an HH-60 Pave Hawk helicopter from the 210th Rescue Squadron, each with a team of Guardian Angels from the 212th Rescue Squadron.

Guardian Angel teams are highly trained medical personnel made up of a pararescue specialist and a combat rescue officer who specialize in conducting high-risk rescue missions.

The personal locator beacon that the stranded hiker used was a DeLorme satellite messenger—a more recent innovation that enabled him to transmit text messages to NPS personnel, Romspert explained. As well, the beacon sent out a signal, giving rescue assets a location to hone in on.

“The beacon leaves little tick marks wherever the location of the device is, so they flew right out to that location and found him by the river,” he said.

Using the hoist capabilities of the Pave Hawk, the rescue crew pulled the hiker up into the aircraft and flew him back to Bettles. The man was then released to NPS park rangers to get medically reevaluated and released.

“He was okay,” said Romspert. “He wasn’t injured. He was well prepared, and that helped his situation.”

[Monday July 21st  2014  10th  EDITION 5:24 P.M.]

Former president George W Bush donates to Sullivan
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Contributors to Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Dan Sullivan's campaign include a former president and first lady.

Former President George W. Bush and his wife, Laura, each contributed $1,250 to Sullivan in April. The donations show up on his latest financial disclosure, which spans from April through June.

Sullivan served as an assistant secretary of state in the Bush White House.

He is vying for the Republican nomination for the Senate seat held by Democrat Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election. The other prominent Republican candidates are Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller.

The quarterly filing deadline was last Tuesday. Both Sullivan and Begich have released their full disclosure reports.

Treadwell and Miller have yet to release any details about the past fundraising quarter.

The primary is Aug. 19.

17 billionth barrel flows down Alaska pipeline
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The trans-Alaska pipeline has moved its 17 billionth barrel of oil.

The operator of the 37-year-old pipeline, Alyeska Pipeline Service Co., announced the milestone Monday.

It has been nearly five years since the 16 billionth barrel flowed down the line, in October 2009.

The 800-mile pipeline is the economic lifeblood of the state, which relies heavily on oil revenues to run. The pipeline runs from the prodigious North Slope to Valdez, from where tankers are shipped.

Alyeska says the pipeline has generated about $180 billion in state revenue.

Oil flowing through the line has been on a downward trend since reaching a peak of 2.1 million barrels a day in the late 1980s.

Soldier mauled by bear was wearing protective gear
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Officials say a 26-year-old Alaska Army National Guard soldier was wearing a combat helmet and other protective gear when he was attacked by a bear while participating in a training exercise at a military base.

Sgt. Lucas Wendeborn of Valdez is being treated for puncture wounds and lacerations after the mauling Sunday at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. Base officials say the female brown bear was defending her two cubs.

Guard spokeswoman Candis Olmstead says Wendeborn's injuries are not life-threatening.

Wendeborn was participating in a navigation exercise that involves giving soldiers compasses and maps and timing them as they make their way alone to locations on a course.

It was the second mauling at the base in two months. Jessica Gamboa, a soldier's wife, was badly mauled May 18 as she jogged.

Funeral held for woman who gave birth in coma
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — A funeral has been held in Bethel for a local woman who gave birth while in a coma after spending most of her pregnancy as clinically brain-dead.

KYUK says the family of 29-year-old Jessie Ayagalria also is holding an ongoing fundraiser to care for baby Faith. The funeral was held Saturday.

The baby was delivered by cesarean section July 8 at an Anchorage hospital. The family was notified of Ayagalria's death three days later.

Ayagalria's sister, Krissy Medina, plans to begin the process to legally adopt the baby.

Ayagalria's uncle, Henry Combs, says his niece's struggle with alcohol abuse led to her condition.

Ayagalria suffered a cardiac arrest in January.

That's when doctors discovered she was 12 weeks pregnant. The family agreed to put her on life support.

Parnell reports raising more than $285K
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell raised more than $285,000 during the latest reporting period, including $100,000 from the state Republican party.

Parnell reported having close to $450,000 on hand, with about one month to go before the primary. The other Republicans running are Russ Millette and Brad Snowden.

Millette was elected state GOP chairman during a boisterous 2012 election but was ousted by party leaders before taking over.

The report, filed with the Alaska Public Offices Commission, runs from Feb. 2 through July 18.

While the party generally does not get involved in primaries, late last year it endorsed Parnell for re-election, after the Democrats endorsed Byron Mallott as their pick.

Numerous cars vandalized, burglarized in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Numerous vehicles have been vandalized and burglarized at a south Anchorage apartment complex.

KTUU reports 12 cars were spray-painted over the weekend at the complex, located near Dowling Road's intersection with the New Seward Highway. Cars also had seats slashed and windshield wipers stolen.

The string of burglary and vandalism has been occurring for almost three weeks to cars parked at the complex.

Police spokeswoman Anita Shell says that in any vandalism situation, it's important for people not to touch any evidence left behind so fingerprints can be processed. She says it's also a good idea to file a police report.

Limo's 17 occupants uninjured in drive-by shooting
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage police say there's been no reports of injuries after more than 30 rounds were fired at a limousine bus containing 17 people.

Police say 10 rounds hit the limo during the early Sunday morning shooting in Midtown Anchorage.

All but one of the limo's occupants fled the scene when the bus stopped.

The remaining witness told officers the limo's occupants had spent about two hours earlier in the evening at Al's Alaskan Inn. The witness wasn't aware of any altercations at the nightclub and said she didn't know why anyone would shoot at them.

Everyone inside ducked down when the shooting started.

Police collected more than 30 shell casings from four different guns from the shooting scene near 47th Avenue and Arctic Boulevard.

Companies file export application for Alaska LNG
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The companies pursuing a major liquefied natural gas project in Alaska have applied for an export license with the U.S. Department of Energy.

The application requests authorization to export up to 20 million metric tons of liquefied natural gas a year for 30 years.

Participants in the project include BP, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil Corp., TransCanada Corp. and the Alaska Gasline Development Corp., or AGDC.

TransCanada owns the state's interest in the pipeline and gas treatment plant, with the state having an option to buy some of that back as the project progresses. AGDC holds the state's interests in liquefaction facilities.

High water sinks Fairbanks regatta
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — High water forced the cancellation of the Red Green Regatta in Fairbanks over the weekend.

Participants had been warned last week to plan for less clearance under bridges than in the past and to consider adjustments for tall boats. The main concern was with the low hang of the Veterans Memorial Bridge, which only allowed for several feet of clearance in the days leading to Sunday's scheduled regatta.

The event is sponsored by public broadcasting station KUAC. Assistant general manager Gretchen Gordon said organizers went over their options, including possibly changing the route or pushing the regatta back.

In the end, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the event was moved off the water, and into a parking lot, where entries were judged.

Crews work on Bethel harbor project
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Construction crews are working on an environmental protection project at the Bethel small boat harbor.

KYUK reports that crews are sloping the banks of the harbor and adding armor rock to protect it in the future.

Bethel port director Pete Williams says embankments have sloughed off into the harbor, causing it to get rather shallow.

This summer's state-funded, $3.7 million work is among the final steps of a multi-year dredging and harbor improvement project.

The work will involve reinforcement of the entrance channel. Crews also will be working on stabilizing the north and south sides of the harbor, and they will finish with the west side.

The work is slated for completion in mid-September.

Anchorage mulls fence regs to protect moose
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Municipal officials in Alaska's largest city are considering outlawing gothic style metal fences after five moose were gored to death in recent years.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports the Anchorage Assembly will conduct a public hearing Aug. 5 to consider regulating metal palisade fences with spiked pointed tips.

The fences stand between 4- and 6-feet and are usually found around private residences for both security and aesthetic reasons. But state wildlife biologists say moose get caught up, or gored by the tips when they try to jump over them.

The proposal would outlaw such fences shorter than 9 feet unless the tips are removed or the spikes capped.

Soldier mauled by bear at base in Alaska
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Officials say a National Guard soldier was mauled by a bear while participating in a training exercise at a military base in Alaska.

The Alaska Dispatch News reports the female brown bear was defending her cubs when it mauled the Alaska Army National Guard soldier Sunday morning at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.

The soldier's name hasn't been released. The soldier was listed in stable condition Sunday afternoon.

Base officials say the soldier was participating in a navigation exercise that involves giving soldiers compasses and maps and timing them as they make their way alone to locations on the course.

Sunday's attack was the second mauling at the base in about two months.

Jessica Gamboa, a soldier's wife, was badly mauled May 18 as she jogged on a trail.

Search underway for Brevig Mission man missing
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say searchers have found the clothing of a Brevig Mission man who has been missing for nearly one week, but no other sign of him has turned up.

KTUU says 21-year-old Clarence Ray Olanna was last seen by his family last Tuesday.

Troopers say Olanna's clothing was found the following day on the shore near the western Alaska village.

The search for Olanna has involved boats, four-wheelers and an Alaska Army National Guard helicopter. Gusty winds prevented boaters from searching the waters on Saturday, and people on all-terrain vehicles searched from the village to Lost River.

The search continued on Sunday.

CBJ Assembly meets tonight
The City and Borough of Juneau Assembly meets in a regularly scheduled meeting at 7 tonight in Assembly Chambers. Several ordinances will be considered including new liquor license applications at Juneau International Airport, establishing a Ski Area Board and the creation of an empowered board to operate and manage the city-owned aquatics facilities.

The public hearing on the second-hand dealers ordinance has been postponed until the August 11, 2014 meeting.

[Sunday July 20th 2014  7th  EDITION 4:30 P.M.]

Parking tickets and more at CBJ Assembly Meeting
City manager Kim Kiefer told KINY Friday on Action Line that the "second-hand dealers" proposed ordinance, originally scheduled for public hearing at Monday night's CBJ Assembly meeting, has been postponed until August 11th.

There will be ordinances up concerning parking tickets, as well as changing the charter to have an empowered aquatic board and to have the Eaglecrest Board oversee Treadwell.

Suspect in 20-year-old Yakutat murder sentenced
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A man who long had been the suspect in the murder of a woman in Yakutat nearly 20 years ago has been sentenced to prison.

Robert D. Kowalski was sentenced to serve 40 years in prison on Friday. Kowalski was convicted of killing 39-year-old Sandra Perry in 1996, shooting her with a shot gun during a dispute.

During the sentencing trail, Kowalski continued to say the shooting was an accident.

The 53-year-old was only charged with first-and second-degree murder in connection to Perry's death because another one of his girlfriend's died in a nearly identical fashion, causing the Yakutat case to be re-opened. Kowalski fatally shot 45-year-old Lorraine Kay Morin in Montana in 2008. Kowalski was convicted of homicide via an Alford Plea for Morin's death.

Cyclist killed in Anchorage identified
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A cyclist killed in a collision with a pickup truck in Anchorage has been identified.

The Alaska News Dispatch reports the bicyclist was identified as 51-year-old Jeffery Dusenbury.

Dusenbury died shortly after being struck by a Chevy pickup truck in southeast Anchorage. A 17-year-old girl driving a black Chevy pickup was detained Saturday. Charges are pending. The girl will not be identified because she's a minor.

The driver left the scene of the collision before police tracked down the vehicle a few blocks away.

Kentucky fugitive caught in Ketchikan
The Alaska Bureau of Investigation's Southeast Cities Against Drugs task force, with the assistance of the Alaska State Troopers from the Ketchikan Post, arrested 39 year old Jay Campbell at a residence in Ketchikan after learning that he was a fugitive from justice out of Boone County, Kentucky.

The original offense for Campbell's extraditable arrest warrant was for violating the conditions of his felony probation related to possession of methamphetamine. Campbell was taken to the Ketchikan Correctional Center Sunday morning pending extradition. While undergoing the booking process at the Ketchikan Correctional Center, Campbell was found to have a Suboxone strip hidden in his mouth. Campbell was charged with Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance in the Fifth Degree and Promoting Contraband in the First Degree, and was remanded without bail pending arraignment.

Arrest for heroin and meth on ferry from Bellingham
The Alaska Bureau of Investigation's Southeast Cities Against Drugs task force and K-9 Lutri, with the assistance of the Alaska State Troopers from the Ketchikan Post, found 23 year old Brittany Diaz of Washington at the Ketchikan terminal of the Alaska Marine Highway System, after her arrival on a ferry from Bellingham, in possession of heroin and methamphetamine.

Diaz was arrested Sunday morning for two counts of Misconduct Involving a Controlled Substance in the Fourth Degree. Diaz was remanded at the Ketchikan Correctional Center without bail pending arraignment.

Voter registration ends today
The State of Alaska, Division of Elections reminds us that the deadline to register or update your voter registration for the 2014 Primary election is Sunday July 20th..

For more information, call 957-3031.

Registration forms are at

Halibut over limit, disfiguring crab charges
Alaska Wildlife Troopers report finding two Juneau men, 56 year old Jonathan Stetson and 32 year old Trevor Shakespeare at Auke Bay after returning from a sport fishing trip on Wednesday The men were in possession of 20 unprocessed halibut, 12 halibut over their legal possession limit. They were also found in possession of four Dungeness crab that were disfigured in a manner that prevented the determination of size.

Both Stetson and Shakespeare were issued summons to appear in court for prohibited conduct general, regarding the over limit of halibut. Stetson was issued a summons for disfiguring crab. Both subjects were given arraignment dates of August 7th in the District Court at Juneau.

Summons issued for fishing just moments after fishery closed
Alaska Wildlife Troopers say as they were patrolling the Amagla Harbor Special Harvest Area seine fishery Thursday, they observed the fishing vessel "Favorite" operating a seine net 1 minute and 45 seconds after the fishery had closed at 3:00 PM.

The permit holder, Waico Hall, age 28 of Ketchikan, was issued a summons to appear in the District Court at Juneau on August 8th for commercial fishing closed period.

Juneau sex offender charges
Alaska State Troopers say a Juneau man was served with an arrest warrant for Failure to Register as a Sex Offender in the First Degree.

50 year old Charles Fawcett Jr. was contacted at the Lemon Creek Correction Center on Friday. Bail was set at $10,000.00.

Forum on oil tax referendum set for Wednesday
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A forum on the oil tax referendum is scheduled for this week in Anchorage.

Democratic Sen. Bill Wielechowski and economist Gregg Erickson will argue in favor of the repeal, or a "yes" vote. Oil and gas policy consultant Brad Keithley and petroleum economist Roger Marks will argue for keeping the current tax structure in place, and a "no" vote.

The referendum will appear on the Aug. 19 ballot.

The forum, one of several held on the topic ahead of the primary, is scheduled for Wednesday at the Loussac Library.

It is being sponsored by Alaska Common Ground. Co-sponsors include the Institute of Social and Economic Research at the University of Alaska Anchorage.

[Saturday July 19th 2014  5th  EDITION 8:59 P.M.]

CG Kodiak medivac
JUNEAU, Alaska — A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew medevaced a mariner from a cargo ship in the Gulf of Alaska 160 miles east of Kodiak Saturday.

The Jayhawk crew rendezvoused with the vessel, Horizon Kodiak, safely hoisted the injured 39-year-old man, who was reportedly suffering from chemical exposure, and brought him to Kodiak for medical attention.

Coast Guard 17th District command center watchstanders received the medevac request from the crew of the Horizon Kodiak Saturday morning and directed the launch of the Jayhawk crew and an HC-130 Hercules aircraft crew for oversight. The Horizon Kodiak crew, originally 200 miles from Kodiak, began closing distance to expedite the medevac.

Once on scene, the Jayhawk crew conducted the hoist and returned to Kodiak, where emergency medical personnel were waiting.

“Coast Guard crews in Alaska often perform long range medevacs at sea,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Erik Ihle, an operations specialist at the 17th District command center. “To ensure the safety of our own crews, as well as those we are rescuing, we often deploy more than one asset to assist in a response.”

The injured man was listed in stable condition upon transfer to emergency medical personnel in Kodiak.

Weather on scene was reported as 23 mph winds and six-foot seas.

(Photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Diana Honings-Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak and Kodiak Fire Department personnel carry an injured mariner from an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter to a waiting ambulance in Kodiak, Alaska, July 19, 2014.)

Seward St. closure for Oyster Fest
Seward Street between Front Street and Municipal Way will be closing for Oyster Fest today.

This section of Seward Street will be closed to parking and vehicle traffic Saturday from 9:00 A.M. until 10:00 P.M.

The Third Annual celebration of Alaska-grown oysters takes place downtown from 2pm to 8pm in the Sealaska Plaza.

Tickets ($12/half-dozen or $20/dozen) can be purchased on-site.

There will be music, outside food this year, contests, a beer garden, and a whole host of sauces to go on the oyster prepared by local restaurants.

Cyclist killed in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage police say a cyclist was killed Saturday morning and the vehicle left the scene before police tracked down the driver a few blocks away.

The victim, a 51-year-old man, was pronounced dead at a local hospital. He has not yet been identified.

A 17-year-old girl driving a black Chevy pickup was detained Saturday, but no charges have yet been filed.

Police say the pickup struck the cyclist in southeast Anchorage.

Refinery owner loses water cleanup legal challenge
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A North Pole refinery owner has lost its latest challenge in a long-running attempt to get a petroleum company to pay for groundwater contamination that contributed to the refinery's closure.

Flint Hills Resources Alaska cannot pursue damages against the former owner of its North Pole refinery, Williams Alaska Petroleum, a Superior Court judge has ruled.

In November 2013, Judge Michael P. McConahy determined that the statute of limitations had expired by the time Flint Hills had filed its lawsuit. He made the same ruling this month.

The company wants to pursue damages against Williams for spilling the industrial chemical sulfolane at the site before Flint Hills purchased the refinery in 2004.

Sulfolane has been detected in a 3-mile long groundwater plume near the refinery.


[Friday July 18th 2014  19TH  EDITION 6:02 P.M.]

Mendenhall Glacier ice cave roof collapses
US Forest Service officials announced today that the roof/ceiling of the popular Mendenhall Glacier ice cave has collapsed near the entry.

Guiding company co-owner Becky Janes of Above and Beyond Alaska notified the Forest Service at noon Friday of the collapsed entrance. Above and Beyond Alaska is one of two commercial guiding companies holding permits to escort visitors along the west side of Mendenhall Glacier.

“The ice cave remains unstable and unsafe,” said Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center Director John Neary. “The collapse is a sign of structural weakness in the ice that may extend beyond the freshly broken ice.” Neary cautions people to stay away from the ice cave.

{This photo above of the collapsed ice cave entrance was taken by Kevin Crowley.

Because a man’s shoulder is visible, we get some size perspective.}

{Photo credit for ice cave images: Miles Gayton, Above and Beyond Alaska}

Roof of melting Alaska ice cave collapses
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Forest Service officials say a melting ice cave at a southeast Alaska glacier has collapsed.

Mendenhall Glacier naturalist Laurie Craig says there are no reported injuries from the collapse Thursday near the cave's entry.

Officials are cautioning people to stay away.

Craig says the cave is not easily accessible. Getting to it requires a rugged hike and a rock climb. By water, the cave is accessible by kayak, but visitors still must hike to it.

Earlier, officials said an aerial view of the popular cave showed significant deterioration at the entrance and a possibility of collapse.

Summer melting and heavy rainfall are possible sources of the ice cave's condition.

Officials they were notified about the collapse on Friday by a local tour company.

Coast Guard assists vessel taking on water near Ketchikan
JUNEAU, Alaska — Coast Guard Station Ketchikan crewmembers assisted the six-person crew of a fishing vessel taking on water near Ketchikan Friday morning.

A Station Ketchikan 47-foot Motor Life Boat crew and 25-foot Response Boat – Small crew rendezvoused with the vessel taking on water, deployed a team with dewatering pumps and escorted the 65-foot purse seiner back into port.

Coast Guard Sector Juneau command center watchstanders received a request for assistance from the fishing vessel Vernon’s crew, with a report that one foot of water was in the engine room. The watchstanders immediately issued an urgent marine information broadcast and directed the launch of the two boat crews.

Once on-scene, a Station Ketchikan boarding team began operating four dewatering pumps to control the flooding on the fishing vessel. The dewatering team stayed aboard the vessel as the Motor Life Boat crew escorted them back into Ketchikan.

“Our boat crews train on a variety of equipment so they are ready to assist and rescue mariners during emergency situations,” said Senior Chief Petty Officer Kevin Smith, officer-in-charge, Station Ketchikan. “Ensuring that mariners in our area of responsibility are safe is the number one priority for our station.”

The cause of the flooding is under investigation.

Weather on scene was reported as 10 mph winds and 2-foot seas.


PHOTO CREDIT:  Coast Guard Station Ketchikan boarding team members help the crew of the fishing vessel Vernon dewater their engine room near Ketchikan, Alaska, July 18, 2014. The Station Ketchikan crew brought four pumps to manage the flooding aboard the purse seiner. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Station Ketchikan)

Alaska Supreme Court sides with tribal court
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska Supreme Court sides with a tribal court in a child custody and sovereignty case.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the court on Friday ruled in the Simmonds v. Parks case that started in 2008.

The Minto Tribal Court terminated the parental rights of Edward Parks and Bessie Stearman. The court sent their child to a foster family.

Parks isn't a tribal member and sued to regain custody in state superior court. That court ruled the tribal court erred when it didn't allow Parks' attorney to speak before the child was given up for adoption.

But the Supreme Court reversed that ruling, saying Parks should have appealed the decision in tribal court and not the state court. It ordered the case sent back to superior court for dismissal.

Alaska's largest paper undergoes name change
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska's largest newspaper will undergo a name change.

The Anchorage Daily News will officially become Alaska Dispatch News with the Sunday edition. Publisher Alice Rogoff and Editor Tony Hopfinger outlined that and other changes to advertisers during an outdoor luncheon Friday.

Alaska Dispatch Publishing LLC, the parent company of the online newspaper the Alaska Dispatch, purchased the Anchorage Daily News from The McClatchy Co. for $34 million earlier this year. The newspaper's new name fits with the use of the newspaper's established online address,, for the combined website.

The name change also reflects an emphasis on statewide news. Rogoff announced the newspaper will soon have bureaus in major Alaska hub communities. Hopfinger said Bethel will be first, likely followed by Nome and then Barrow.

The Sunday magazine, "We Alaskans," also will return, beginning this weekend.

Hikers stranded overnight rescued near Valdez
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Members of the Alaska Air National Guard have rescued five hikers stranded overnight on a cliff near Valdez.

Sgt. Edward Eagerton says there were no reported injuries.

The hikers became stranded on the steep terrain Wednesday. They contacted the Valdez Fire Department, which sent out four climbers, who couldn't reach the hikers right away because of the terrain and wet conditions.

A civilian helicopter crew tried to help, but couldn't reach the hikers. The crew dropped food and clothing, however.

The Guard went out in a helicopter and another aircraft Thursday morning after Alaska State Troopers contacted the Alaska Rescue Coordination Center.

By the time they arrived, two of the fire department climbers had reached the hikers. The firefighters guided the helicopter crew to a landing spot.

Whale narrowly escapes seaplane
Sea planes skidding across the water are a near everyday occurrence in the remote coastal village of Angoon, Alaska. The only other way to get there is by boat. It's not often, however, that a landing sea plane narrowly avoids a surfacing humpback whale, but that's what happened last week. "All the sudden, the pilot advanced the throttle and I didn't know why. I thought, 'Oh something must be wrong,'" said Thomas Hamm, who happened to be filming the landing.

As seen in the video, that last-second throttle was just enough to bounce the plane up and over the emerging whale, but not before the whale's spout blasted a mist of seawater onto the plane's passing windshield. The pilot said he didn't see the whale but was reacting to the commotion on the shore. Several people, Mann said, were pointing and yelling trying to alert the pilot to the whale's presence. Seconds after the near miss the plane landed safely and the whale coasted along unscathed.

State confirms rabies in bat in southeast Alaska
UNEAU, Alaska (AP) — State officials have confirmed rabies in a bat in southeast Alaska.

The state health department said biologists on Prince of Wales Island last Sunday trapped several Keen's Myotis bats, one of which was acting more aggressively and seemed possibly sick. It was euthanized and tested for rabies. The test came back positive Thursday.

The two prior cases of confirmed rabies in bats in Alaska were in 1993 and 2006, both in Southeast.

Louisa Castrodale, an epidemiologist with the state, says Alaska doesn't have a huge bat population. She says it is assumed there is bat rabies in southeast Alaska but the extent is not known.

She says the department wants to ensure anyone who may have been bitten by a bat doesn't discount their possible risk of exposure.

NASA project to check out summer sea ice
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — NASA is using a high-altitude, converted U2 spy plane to test technology over Arctic sea ice.

KUAC reports the long-winged ER-2 jet is based in Fairbanks for three weeks for testing and developing technology for satellite applications.

The three-week project using airborne laser technology will allow scientists to get a preview of a satellite mission NASA plans to launch in 2017. It's also a follow-up to a 2012 scan in Iceland using the laser technology, known as lidar.

The flights are being conducted at 65,000 feet over Arctic sea ice and Alaska glaciers.

Assistant NASA research scientist Kelly Blunt says the project will be used to develop a computer program to interpret the data collected.

The project operating out of Fairbanks began July 12 and continues until Aug. 1.

Rare blue-colored red king crab caught in Alaska
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A rare blue-colored red king crab was part of a fisherman's catch earlier this month in Nome, Alaska.

KNOM reports Frank McFarland found the blue crab in his pot when fishing on July Fourth off Nome. The blue crab is being kept alive at the Norton Sound Seafood Center until McFarland can have it mounted.

The rare crab has become a rock star of sorts, with people showing up at the center to have their photos taken with it.

Scott Kent, with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game in Nome, says he has no idea why the red king crab is blue, but suspects it's just a mutation.

Kent says the blue crab "turns up once in a blue moon."

UPDATE: EPA proposal could block huge Alaska mine
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing restrictions that would essentially block development of a planned massive gold-and-copper mine near the headwaters of a world premier salmon fishery in Alaska.

EPA regional administrator Dennis McLerran says mining would cause "irreversible damage" to salmon fisheries in Bristol Bay.

The announcement Friday marked the latest step in a rarely invoked process used to protect water resources.

The EPA is currently being sued by the group behind the proposed Pebble Mine and the state of Alaska for allegedly exceeding its authority.

Pebble Partnership CEO Tom Collier said while his group needs to analyze EPA's proposal, it is outraged that the agency took the step.

Bridge fishing raises concerns in Ketchikan
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — Ketchikan city leaders have been asked to come up with ideas to address concerns with fishing from the Stedman Street Bridge.

Residents who testified before the Ketchikan City Council on Thursday generally agreed that fishing should continue to be allowed in some way.

But there were concerns raised, too, about congested sidewalks, the potential for a tourist to get snagged with a fishing hook and kayakers getting hassled.

KRBD reports Mayor Lew Williams III suggested the city start enforcing some of its rules.

The discussion ended with the council directing city management to talk with the state and others about options. The state owns the bridge.

Gay marriage legal challenges: Where things stand
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — State same-sex marriage bans have been falling around the country since June 2013, when the nation's highest court ordered the federal government to recognize state-sanctioned gay marriages. The remaining state bans all face legal challenges to overturn them.

Gay and lesbian couples can now marry in 19 states and the District of Columbia, with Oregon and Pennsylvania being the latest to join the list. The others are: Massachusetts, California, Connecticut, Iowa, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Maine, Maryland, Washington, Delaware, Hawaii, Minnesota, New Jersey, Rhode Island, New Mexico and Illinois.

Same-sex couples cannot wed in the rest of the states.

A federal appeals court ruled Friday that Oklahoma's ban is unconstitutional, but the judges put the ruling on hold so it could be appealed. The decision comes three weeks after the same panel of judges reached the same conclusion on Utah's same-sex marriage ban.

A total of 14 gay marriage cases are pending in state and federal appeals courts, with judges reviewing a wave of pro-gay marriage rulings that have come in the past year. Those rulings all are on hold pending appellate court decisions.

Here's a look at where things stand with other legal challenges across the country:

— ARKANSAS: A state judge in Arkansas' largest county struck down the state's gay marriage ban, saying the state has "no rational reason" for preventing gay couples from marrying. The state Supreme Court brought the marriages to a halt and is weighing state officials' appeal.

— COLORADO: A state judge struck down the state's gay marriage ban on July 9, but put the ruling on hold pending the outcome of the appeal. Despite that order, several county clerks began issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples. More than 200 gay couples have wed in Boulder, Denver and Pueblo counties. The judge who issued the ruling has refused to stop that action. Colorado's Republican attorney general John Struthers is appealing to the state Supreme Court. He says he knows it's only a matter of time until gay marriage is legal in his state, but that he'll continue to defend his state's ban.

— FLORIDA: A judge ruled this week that gay and lesbian couples can marry in Florida's most gay-friendly county, siding with same-sex couples in the Florida Keys who challenged a voter-approved ban as discriminatory. But an immediate state appeal stopped couples from getting married.

— IDAHO: State officials announced they will appeal a decision from a federal judge overturning the state's same-sex marriage ban. The appeal is with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which is scheduled to hear arguments on Sept. 8.

— INDIANA: A federal judge struck down the state's ban on same-sex marriage June 25 in a ruling that allowed gay couples to wed before it was put on stay. That ruling is on appeal before the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago. In a separate case, that same federal appeals court recently ordered Indiana to acknowledge the out-of-state marriage of a lesbian couple, one of whom is terminally ill, on an emergency basis. That ruling applies just to one couple — not to others.

— KENTUCKY: A federal judge overturned the state's ban on gay marriage on June 30. The state is appealing to the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati. The same judge previously ordered Kentucky to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states. Attorney general Jack Conway said he would not defend the state's law, but the state has hired outside attorneys to handle the case and is appealing that to the same federal appeals court. The 6th Circuit will hear arguments in both cases, along with gay marriage cases in Ohio, Michigan, and Tennessee, on Aug. 6 in a single session.

— MICHIGAN: The 6th Circuit is reviewing Michigan's same-sex marriage ban that was overturned by a federal judge in March following a rare trial that mostly focused on the impact of same-sex parenting on children.

— NEVADA: Eight gay couples are challenging Nevada's voter-approved 2002 ban that was upheld by a federal judge in 2012. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco has scheduled arguments for Sept. 8. Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto is refusing to defend the ban.

— OHIO: The 6th Circuit appeals court is reviewing two gay marriage cases from Ohio. The first involves recognizing gay marriages on death certificates, and the second involves an order for Ohio to recognize all out-of-state marriages.

— TENNESSEE: A federal judge ordered the state to recognize three same-sex couples' marriages while their lawsuit against the state works through the courts. Tennessee officials are appealing the preliminary injunction to the 6th Circuit.

— TEXAS: A federal judge declared the state's ban unconstitutional, issuing a preliminary injunction. The state is appealing to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court in New Orleans.

— UTAH, OKLAHOMA: The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver ruled on June 25 that Utah must allow gay couples to marry, finding the Constitution protects same-sex relationships. The court made the same ruling on Oklahoma's ban Friday. Utah and Oklahoma voters overwhelmingly passed the bans in 2004.

— WISCONSIN: A federal judge in Madison struck down the state's ban in June, leading to more than 500 same-sex marriages in the state before the judge put her ruling on hold a week later pending an appeal. The Wisconsin attorney general is appealing the ruling to 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago, which has not yet set a date for arguments.

— VIRGINIA: The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond heard arguments in May about Virginia's overturned ban and is expected to rule soon. Virginia's attorney general, Mark Herring, is one of seven in the country who has refused to defend a state gay marriage ban. A county clerk who was sued in Virginia is defending the ban.

— ELSEWHERE: Other states with court cases demanding recognition of gay marriage are: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, West Virginia and Wyoming. Most lawsuits challenge same-sex marriage bans or ask states to recognize gay marriages done in other states.

3 people rescued, dog dies, after boat capsizes
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — Three people have been rescued after their boat capsized on the Kenai River, but their dog died.

The Peninsula Clarion says nearby boaters pulled the people out of the water after the boat capsized Wednesday night after a wave went over the bow. None of three was injured.

Kenai police Lt. David Ross says the boaters were wearing life jackets.

Ross says that even though boats in the area may have contributed to the waves that caused the boat flip, having boats close by also made for a quick rescue.

A Kenai rescue boat transported two people back to land. The third person got a ride from a fellow boater.

Ross says the capsized boat was recovered.

JPD'S Crime of the Week
On July 5th, 2014, at about 2:30 in the afternoon, a 33 year-old Juneau man reported someone had siphoned or attempted to siphon fuel from his vehicle and a neighbor’s vehicle. The man also said his fuel door received about $150 damage from being pulled open.

A Juneau Police Department officer responded  to the 6200 Block of North Douglas Highway  and found fresh tire and shoe tracks in the area, believed to be from the suspect.

Those tracks were photographed. The shoes are size 11.5 or 12 with a herringbone pattern down each side with a recessed crosshatch pattern down the center. The tire tracks showed small squares and the vehicle was probably a smaller car.

Unemployment rates fell in 22 US states in June
WASHINGTON (AP) — Unemployment rates dropped in 22 U.S. states last month and stayed the same in 14, as the nation at large posted a fifth straight month of solid hiring.

The Labor Department said Friday that unemployment rates rose in 14 states. Meanwhile, employers added jobs in 33 states and cut back in 17.

The biggest drop in the unemployment rate occurred in Illinois, where it fell to 7.1 percent from 7.5 percent.

Stronger hiring has helped lower unemployment in many parts of the country. Nationwide, employers added 288,000 positions last month, capping the healthiest stretch of job gains in 15 years. The robust increases have helped cut the unemployment rate to 6.1 percent, the lowest in nearly six years.

The largest job gains, as a percentage of the workforce, occurred in Indiana, North Dakota and Oklahoma. Hiring rose 0.6 percent last month in each state.

The biggest job losses were in Alaska, where employment fell 1.7 percent, and West Virginia, where it dropped 1.2 percent.

Rocks along Kodiak road being removed
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — Work is underway to remove a section of a growing rockslide along a Kodiak road.

KMXT reports a company called Golden Alaska Excavating was contracted by the Alaska Department of Transportation to do the work on Rezanof Drive between piers 2 and 3.

Company owner Rick Ryser says rocks have been falling down the Pillar Mountain hillside over the road for several decades. He says the rocks have built up behind a rock wall to the point where it's a safety hazard for drivers.

Ryser says the city of Kodiak also played a role in the excavation decision because the rocks were getting in the way of work at Pier 3.

The work is expected to be completed in early August.

The filing period for Assembly and School Board Seats Opens August 8
Nominating Petitions are now available in the Municipal Clerk's office in City Hall and on line.

The filing period for the City & Borough of Juneau Assembly and School Board opens Friday, August 8, 2014, at 8:00 a.m. Voters will elect three Assemblymembers and two School Board members at the October 7, 2014 Regular Municipal Election. Filing for the seats closes Monday, August 18, 2014 at 4:30 p.m.

Offices to be filled (elected by the voters at-large):

One (1) Areawide Assemblymember - 3 year term

One (1) District One Assemblymember - 3 year term

One (1) District Two Assemblymember - 3 year term

Two (2) School Board Members - 3 year terms

Candidates for office must be qualified voters of the City and Borough of Juneau:

(1) Qualified to vote in State elections;
(2) A resident of the municipality for at least thirty days immediately preceding the election;
(3) Registered to vote in state elections at a residence address within the municipality at least thirty days before the municipal election at which the person seeks to vote; and
(4) Not disqualified under Article V of the Alaska Constitution.

In addition, candidates for Assembly must be a resident of CBJ for at least one year immediately preceding election to office.

Also, candidates for Assembly District 1 and District 2 seats must reside in the district from which elected or appointed at the time of the Assembly member's election or appointment.

Alaska unemployment rate hit 6.4 percent in June
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska's unemployment rate stood at 6.4 percent in June.

That compares to the revised May rate of 6.3 percent and a seasonally adjusted rate of 6.6 percent in June 2013.

The nation unemployment rate was 6.1 percent last month.

The state labor department says Alaska's unemployment rate returned to levels seen before the recession relatively quickly while the U.S. rate has recovered more slowly and continues to decline.

EPA proposes to block Alaska mine over salmon risk
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is proposing restrictions that would essentially block development of a massive gold-and-copper prospect near the headwaters of a world-premier salmon fishery in Alaska.

The announcement Friday marked the latest step in a rarely invoked process used to protect water resources. EPA previously determined large-scale mining in the Bristol Bay watershed posed significant risk to salmon.

EPA is currently being sued by the group behind the proposed Pebble Mine and the state of Alaska for allegedly exceeding its authority. They argue that EPA should not be able to veto the project before a mine plan is finalized and the project evaluated through the permitting process.

EPA said as part of its analysis it relied on plans the mine's owner filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in 2011.

Wasilla campground closed for renovations
WASILLA, Alaska (AP) — You won't be able to camp overnight at one campground in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough for the rest of this summer.

State officials say the Finger Lake State Recreation Site campground has been closed.

The closure is for renovations to be completed at the Wasilla campground.

Authorities say in a release that the boat launch and day-use area will remain open.

[Thursday July 17th 2014  17th  EDITION 10:11 P.M.]

Public testimony heard on second hand ordinance
The Human Resources Committee had a special meeting tonight and took public testimony concerning a proposed ordinance that would require second hand stores to report certain bought or donated items.

Jesse Kiehl, CBJ Assembly member, says they have a narrower version of the ordinance. "It really gets to just the things that are most often stolen: precious metals and gems, firearms, jewelry, tools, and electronics." Kiehl explained that there's more work to do on the proposed ordinance and it will be held until the August 11th Assembly meeting.

Ten people spoke, including business owners, charity workers, and victims of theft. Juneau Police Department provided a demonstration of the online reporting system.

CBJ Assembly makes appointments to Eaglecrest Board
The City and Borough of Juneau Assembly, at a Special Assembly Meeting tonight, reappointed Wayne Stevens and Bruce Garrison to the Eaglecrest Ski Area Board to terms beginning immediately and expiring June 30, 2017.

The Assembly thanks all those individuals who have been willing to serve and have submitted applications for consideration. CBJ still has a number of vacant seats on a variety of boards and commissions and anyone interested in serving is encouraged to submit an application. Additional information is available online.

Forest Service warns of imminent collapse of ice cave
The US Forest Service officials warn people to stay away from the cave due to potential for collapse.

A recent aerial observation of the popular Mendenhall Glacier ice cave reveals significant deterioration of the cave entrance. The entrance to the ice cave appears to be thinning dramatically and will soon collapse. New holes in the ice are opening and widening. The danger involved in entering this cave has likely increased considerably.

Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center Director John Neary flew over the ice cave on Wednesday en route to view the condition of Suicide Basin. Heavy rainfall and typical summer melting are the possible source of the deterioration of the ice cave. Ice caves are temporary natural phenomena with limited longevity. “Although ice caves are inherently dangerous because they occur under a melting glacier, this one seems particularly ready to collapse,” said Neary after his inspection flight.

A commercial tour company agrees. Above and Beyond Alaska is one of two companies with Forest Service commercial guiding permits for the west side of Mendenhall Glacier. In a written statement, Above and Beyond Alaska co-owner Becky Janes said, “[our] guides evaluate the condition of the cave on every one of their trips and on July 3, 2014 as a company they decided that the large cave along the glacier’s margin was unsafe to enter with clients.”

A collapse of the ice cave entrance could be fatal or cause serious injuries if falling ice or rock debris drop onto people or pets. A significant number of emergency rescues occur each summer on the glacier and nearby rock peninsula from trips and falls. There is no maintained trail to the ice cave.

On the Forest Service website, officials caution hikers and kayakers to be prepared for rugged conditions if they try to access the ice cave and glacier. The Forest Service advises wearing sturdy hiking boots and good outdoor clothing and quality raingear. Have a communication plan so a friend knows where you are traveling and your anticipated time of return. Carry dry clothing, food and water for survival in case of an unplanned overnight stay.

Additionally, officials ask people to stay at least 250 yards away from nesting birds.

Seward St. closure for Oyster Fest
Seward Street between Front Street and Municipal Way will be closing for Oyster Fest on Saturday.

This section of Seward Street will be closed to parking and vehicle traffic Saturday from 9:00 A.M. until 10:00 P.M.

The Third Annual celebration of Alaska-grown oysters takes place downtown from 2pm to 8pm in the Sealaska Plaza.

Tickets ($12/half-dozen or $20/dozen) can be purchased on-site.

There will be music, outside food this year, contests, a beer garden, and a whole host of sauces to go on the oyster prepared by local restaurants.

New TV show: Escaping Alaska
TLC’s new series ESCAPING ALASKA will premiere later this month.

The series features five young Alaskan natives who risk everything to leave their villages so they can experience life in sunny San Diego. Although they find it hard to leave their families and they take great pride in their heritage, they yearn to pursue their dreams in the Lower 48.

They will ultimately face the decision of whether to return to Alaska or leave home for good.

ESCAPING ALASKA premieres Sunday, July 27 at 10PM (ET/PT) 9PM (AKDT) on TLC.

State wildlife officials kill Anchorage bear
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — State wildlife officials have killed a black bear that was frequently seen in midtown Anchorage.

KTVA reports the bear was killed by Alaska Department of Fish and Game workers Thursday after several trash related incidents.

State wildlife biologist Jessy Coltrane says the incidents happened in heavily populated areas of Anchorage. The latest came Tuesday when police had to fire non-lethal rounds at the bear and her two cubs to move the sow away from trash cans.

Fish and Game officials did not say what the specific incident prompted them to kill the bear or what would become of her cubs.

The bear family had been seen frequently this year in the University of Alaska Anchorage area, including the nearby popular Goose Lake.

Update:  Water back on in Auke Bay area, could be turned off again
Water was back on around noon in the Auke Bay area of Glacier Highway today, from Fritz Cove to the Post Office, after being turned off this morning during ongoing work on the Auke Bay roundabout project.

When service resumes, customers may encounter water discoloration or minor disruptions in service. To clear the discoloration, first wait until the work crew leaves the area, then run the cold water tap (preferably in your bathtub) until the water runs clear.

Call 586-5254 with problems or questions. 

Public Works Director, Kirk Duncan, says service could be turned off again tonight or one night in the near future, but should be done so at 11:00 PM through the overnight hours. 

Alaska-based firefighters head south
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — More than 100 firefighters and other personnel from Alaska are headed south to help battle wildfires in the western United States.

Officials say rains have diminished the threat of wildfires in Alaska this summer, allowing resources to be sent to the Lower 48.

The Gannett Glacier and the White Mountain type two initial attack crews will head to Washington state.

Officials say crew members and support personnel from the state Division of Forestry and the Alaska Fire Service will head to Nevada, Idaho, Utah, Oregon and California to fight wildfires.

A hotshot crew on assignment in Canada's Northwest Territories is expected to return to Alaska next week.

Treadwell joins call to abolish IRS
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Mead Treadwell says the IRS should be abolished.

Treadwell, who is also Alaska's lieutenant governor, said the agency has lost the trust of the American people. He said he supports a "fair tax" instead, and would provide a more detailed statement on what that would entail.

Treadwell said the Republican candidates were asked about tax policy at a debate in Homer this week. He said the targeting of conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status shows a fraudulent use of IRS authority.

Republican rival Joe Miller also has called for abolishing the IRS and changing the tax code.

A spokesman for Republican Dan Sullivan said it's important to put forth viable solutions to changing the tax code, rather than purporting to abolish entire agencies "for political purposes."

Murkowski, Begich have dustup over press release
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski's office requested that reference to her vote to advance for debate a contraception bill be removed from a press release from Democratic Sen. Mark Begich.

Both Alaska senators supported a failed effort to advance legislation aimed at restoring free contraception for women who get their health insurance from companies with religious objections.

But Murkowski spokesman Matthew Felling said the Republican's office took issue with a release saying Murkowski voted in favor of the measure when it was a procedural vote.

Reference to Murkowski was removed in an updated release.

Begich spokeswoman Heather Handyside said the language in the original release could have been clearer.

The dustup comes as Begich has been touting the level of cooperation between the two as he campaigns for re-election.

Risk of earthquake increased for about half of US
WASHINGTON (AP) — A new federal earthquake map dials up the shaking hazard just a bit for about half of the United States and lowers it for nearly a quarter of the nation.

The U.S. Geologic Survey updated Thursday its national seismic hazard maps for the first time since 2008, taking into account research from the devastating 2011 earthquake and tsunami off the Japanese coast and the surprise 2011 Virginia temblor.

Most of the changes are slight. Project chief Mark Petersen said parts of Washington, Oregon, Utah, Oklahoma, Colorado, Wyoming and Tennessee moved into the top two hazard zones.

Parts of 16 states have the highest risk for earthquakes: Alaska, Hawaii, California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Utah, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee, Illinois, Kentucky and South Carolina.

Anchorage man dies in motorcycle crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage police say a 31-year-old man has died in a motorcycle crash.

Nicholas Byers of Anchorage was pronounced dead early Thursday morning at the scene of the crash off of Upper Huffman Road.

Police say they received a call from a resident who heard the crash.

According to police, Byers was not wearing a helmet. An investigation is ongoing.

Ketchikan chaperones to get background checks
KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) — Volunteer school chaperones in Ketchikan who accompany students on overnight trips will now have to go through background checks.

The Ketchikan Daily News reports the Ketchikan School Board unanimously approved the policy change at its Wednesday meeting.

Schools Superintendent Robert Boyle says between 30 and 40 parents will be affected.

The Ketchikan School District already requires coaches and teachers to go through background checks. The policy change does not affect members of the U.S. Coast Guard and others with security cards.

The district's human resources director, Rick Rafter, says volunteer chaperones will not be fingerprinted, which is a more expensive process.

The background checks for volunteer chaperones are expected to cost between $80 and several hundred dollars apiece. Boyle says the cost will be paid by the district.

Anchorage bus routes arrive on Google Maps
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage bus routes and schedules are now available for smart phone users through the Google Maps application.

Anchorage officials announced Wednesday that the city's People Mover bus system partnered with Google to incorporate public transit data into the technology giant's mapping system.

The Anchorage Daily News says desktop users also can plan trips through the People Mover page on the city's website.

The partnership stems from an effort by Brendan Babb, who was part of a team of programmers who in 2012 won the Anchorage Economic Development Corp.'s Hackathon. The event featured programmers challenged to use government data to create apps and web tools.

Babb's team created a working model of the public transportation app. After the event, he volunteered to work with the municipality to develop the technology.

Research show permafrost can also cool
A researcher at U-A-F has documented a way melting permafrost can cool the climate, not just accelerate warming.
The study published this week in the journal "Nature" describes the climate effects of "thermokarst" lakes, which form when frozen soil thaws and creates water-filled depressions.

While thawing releases methane, a heat-trapping gas, in the short term, lead author Katey Walter Anthony of U-A-F's Institute of Northern Engineering found the lakes contribute to cooling over the long term. Vegetation in the lakes locks up carbon dioxide when the plants are frozen into new permafrost.

The study found "thermokarst" lakes in Alaska and Siberia became net carbon sinks about 5,000 years ago.

 However, the study notes that the carbon is not permanently trapped and will likely be released as a warming climate re-thaws more permafrost.

Lawmaker fined $14K for mismanaging campaign funds
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The minority leader of the Alaska House has agreed to a fine of $14,000 for mismanaging campaign funds.

Democratic Rep. Chris Tuck acknowledged mixing up campaign contributions with personal savings and not making accurate, timely disclosures.

He signed a consent agreement with the Alaska Public Offices Commission.

APRN reports the agreement details a tangle of accounting problems, including a 2012 fundraiser Tuck didn't report as a contribution and a commission finding that Tuck managed campaign funds as a section of his personal banking account.

Besides the fine, Tuck must forfeit $6,000 in leftover campaign funds and correct past disclosures. The commission said Tuck took "great efforts" to address the problems once they were raised.

Tuck said the errors weren't intentional and that he wishes he had been more careful.

Fairbanks teen accused of arson to cover murder
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Police say a fire was intentionally set at a Fairbanks apartment building last winter to cover up a murder.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports additional indictments were returned by a grand jury Friday against 18-year-old Conar Lee Groppel.

Detective Peyton Merideth alleges Groppel killed 39-year-old Kristina Pence and then set fire to the 18-unit apartment building in late January. Another person, 50-year-old Jane Connolly, was killed in the fire and about 50 others were displaced.

Merideth declined to provide more details of how Pence was killed, citing the ongoing investigation.

Groppel now faces 16 counts, including arson and varying degrees of murder and manslaughter charges. He's pleaded not guilty.

Sterling home fire kills 11 puppies, 2 cats
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Fire officials say 11 boxer puppies and two cats were killed in a residential fire in Sterling that apparently started while the owners were away.

KTUU says the fire was discovered by neighbors Wednesday morning, about 2 ? hours after the owners had departed.

Firefighters responded in about five minutes and found smoke rising from the home. The fire was extinguished within 30 minutes.

The dead pets were found during a sweep of the building.

Central Emergency Services Brad Nelson says the deaths of the animals, particularly the puppies, hit firefighters hard. He says firefighters unsuccessfully tried to resuscitate one of the puppies.

The fire caused an estimated $60,000 in damages.

Nelson says the homeowners' insurers are planning an investigation after responders said the blaze started in the kitchen.

Strong earthquake rattles section of Alaska, Canada's Yukon Territory
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - Seismologists say a strong earthquake rattled a section of Alaska and Canada's Yukon Territory.

The Alaska Earthquake Center says the 6.0 magnitude quake struck at 3:49 a.m. about 62 miles (100 kilometers) northwest of Yakutat. There are no immediate reports of damage.

The quake was felt in Yakutat, as well as Whitehorse in the Yukon. Yakutat is a Gulf of Alaska community about 45 miles (72 kilometers) southwest of the Canada border.

Troopers say Valdez man dies in 4-wheeler crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a 65-year-old Valdez man has died after he was pinned beneath his four-wheeler on a trail near Eureka.

Troopers say Ben Hopper was found dead on the Dillinger Pass trail. Troopers responded in a helicopter and found Hopper and the overturned vehicle on a remote section of the trail Thursday evening.

Troopers say Hopper had lost control of the four-wheeler while making a steep descent. The vehicle flipped and pinned Hopper beneath it.

The body was being sent to the state medical examiner's office for an autopsy.

Work to start on tribal house in Bartlett Cove
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Site work will begin next month on a traditional tribal house on the shore of Bartlett Cove in southeast Alaska.

The nearly $3 million contract has been awarded to P.K. Builders of Ketchikan to build the traditional Huna Tlingit tribal house in Glacier Bay National Park.

The project is expected to be completed in the summer of 2016.

Parnell signs crime, electronic bullying bills
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell has signed legislation that criminalizes cyber-bullying.

SB128, from Sen. Kevin Meyer, classifies as harassment the sending or publishing of electronic communications that insults or intimidate a minor in a way that that person is in fear of physical injury.

It was one of several bills signed by Parnell on Wednesday.

He also signed a bipartisan omnibus crime bill, which is aimed at reducing the number of re-offenders.

[Wednesday July 16th 2014  18th  EDITION 5:04 P.M.]

High water levels could impact Fairbanks regatta
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Participants in a weekend regatta in Fairbanks may have to scale-down the height of their ships due to rising water levels on the Chena River.

KUAC is sponsoring the Red Green Regatta, and in a Facebook posting Wednesday warned boat builders to plan for less clearance under bridges than in the past and to consider adjustments for tall boats.

The regatta, scheduled for Sunday, is a local tradition. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports participants build floats from recycled materials and a required minimum of one roll of duct tape.

Fairbanks has been having a particularly rainy summer.

The National Weather Service shows the river at about 5 feet but forecasts it will rise to about 7 feet before falling back to 5 or 6 feet heading into the weekend.

Petersburg man injured in explosion at gravel pit
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The Petersburg police chief says a man who was injured in an explosion detonated an explosive mixture in a gravel or rock pit owned by the borough.

Chief Kelly Swihart says there is no evidence that the 59-year-old man was trying to injure others since there's no homes or buildings nearby.

But Swihart says they don't know what he was doing there Sunday.

The injured man was taken to a Seattle hospital, where he was reportedly in serious condition Tuesday. Police have not released the man's name.

About 20 pounds of a commercially-available explosive material in a 5-gallon bucket was found in his vehicle. Authorities also found two other buckets of the material during searches at another location.

The explosives will be detonated.

Police ID woman whose body was found near downtown
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Police have released the identity of a woman whose body was discovered near downtown Anchorage this week.

The state medical examiner identified the body as that of 26-year-old Jessica Lake.

Authorities say Lake was originally from Hooper Bay but has been living in Anchorage for some time. Police say they've had reports she was homeless. Her body was found Tuesday near 13th Avenue and Hyder Street.

The cause of death hasn't been determined, but police continue to investigate. They ask anyone with information about her death to contact dispatch or Anchorage Crime Stoppers.

Lemon Creek Bus Service Restored
Due to the completion of construction in the Lemon Creek area Capital Transit will resume regular service to Davis Avenue and Lemon Creek Road.

Service will be discontinued on Lund Street and Central Avenue.

Hobby Lobby Bill Fails, Murkowski of only 3 republicans to vote in favor
A Democratic effort to reverse the Supreme Court's decision on the Obama administration's birth control requirement failed in the Senate Wednesday, with Alaska's Lisa Murkowski as one of the three only Republicans voting in favor.

The measure needed 60 votes to move forward. It got 56, with three Republicans -- Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Susan Collins of Maine and Mark Kirk of Illinois, voting in favor.

Democrats insist they'll bring the issue up again.

New York senator Chuck Schumer said, "The supreme court got hobby lobby wrong. and with their vote today, senate republicans got it wrong, too. And women across the country aren't going to forget it."
(ABC News)

Alaska senators vote to advance contraception bill
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Alaska's U.S. senators voted to advance legislation aimed at restoring free contraception for women who get their health insurance from companies with religious objections.

The effort fell four votes short of the 60 needed.

The bill was a response to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that found requiring private companies to pay for forms of women's contraception to which they object violates the corporations' religious freedom.

Democratic Sen. Mark Begich co-sponsored the bill. Sen. Lisa Murkowski was one of three Republicans who voted in support.

Murkowski said her vote was consistent with her long-held belief regarding women's access to affordable health care, including contraception.

She said that while she wants to see the federal health care overhaul repealed, access to health care services shouldn't be restricted in the meantime.

Nome council rejects 10 percent sin-tax motion
NOME, Alaska (AP) — Nome council members have rejected a proposal to let residents decide whether to increase taxes on alcohol and tobacco products to 10 percent.

KNOM reports voters still will decide on an upcoming ballot whether to raise the tax to 8 percent from its current 5 percent.

Proponents say the 10 percent tax would help pay for the economic burden that drinking and smoking bring to Nome, such as ambulance services and detention costs.

Police Chief John Papasadora also backed the higher tax. He said across the board, arrests are alcohol-related.

But three council members voted down the 10 percent amount. Two of them, Stan Anderson and Louie Green Sr., said it was unfair for responsible drinkers and bar owners pay the tab for mistakes made by a few.

Young spokesman: Capitol incident misunderstanding
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A spokesman for Rep. Don Young says an incident in which Young crossed police tape intended to keep people away from an asbestos accident at the U.S. Capitol was overblown.

Roll Call, citing "multiple sources," said the Alaska Republican cursed at an officer who tried to stop him from entering the building. An accident involving asbestos work forced a temporary closure of the House side of the Capitol last week.

Young spokesman Matt Shuckerow said the report made it sound like Young was "bursting through walls."

He said Young volunteered to look for an alternate room for a weekly Bible study group to meet and briefly crossed a sectioned-off area to reach an adjacent part of the Capitol.

He called it a misunderstanding and said Young meant no disrespect.

UPDATE: Woman dies, man hospitalized after rescue at lake
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Wasilla police say a 20-year-old Wasilla woman died after being rescued from Lake Lucile, where she had tried to swim to shore for help while her non-swimming companion clung to their overturned canoe.

KTUU reports Arielle Housmann was submerged in the lake for more than one hour. Her companion, 24-year-old Michael Sexton of Palmer, was taken to a local hospital and expected to recover.

The early Wednesday morning rescue occurred after authorities received reports of screaming coming from the lake.

Police spokesman Rick Manrique says a local resident heard the screams, got on a boat and found Sexton, bringing him to shore.

A search was conducted for Housmann. Rescuers found her submerged in the lake's cold waters. She also was taken to the hospital, but could not be saved.

Kodiak museum prepares for community dig
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — The Alutiiq (a-LOO'-tick) Museum in Kodiak is preparing for its 17th annual community archaeology dig.

KMXT says the Community Archaeology Project began in 1997 and allows people older than 14 to participate in real research at an actual excavation site.

The dig is set to begin Monday and continue until Aug. 8 at the Kashevaroff site, among those the museum has excavated in Womens Bay. Museum official Amy Steffian says excavation at the site began last year.

People can participate Mondays through Fridays.

An informational meeting and volunteer orientation is set for 7 p.m. Thursday at the museum.

Attendance is not mandatory, but the meeting will be an opportunity to get first pick of dates to participate.

Only 20 people, including museum staff, can work at the dig daily.

Glacier-like mass moves toward Alaska road
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Officials in Alaska are keeping an eye on a giant glacier-like mass of soil and rock that is moving down a mountain toward the only supply highway to the North Slope.

There's added concern since the trans-Alaska pipeline lies just hundreds of feet beyond the Dalton Highway.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the ice mass dubbed Frozen Debris Lobe A is about 142 feet from the highway, at mile marker 219. The highway serves as the supply road for oil companies working at Prudhoe Bay.

Researchers say it could reach and impact the highway in anywhere from three to 10 years. State transportation officials are planning to reroute the road there. The project has an early estimated cost of $68 million, and it is slated to begin in 2017.

UPDATE: Hearing held to address Alaska inmate deaths
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A legislative hearing to address a recent string of Alaska inmate deaths has prompted a call for legislation to establish a third-party independent review of such deaths.

The Anchorage Daily News says officials with the state Department of Corrections attended the hearing to answer for the deaths of five young inmates at state correctional institutions between April and June.

The packed hearing was convened by state Sen. Hollis French, an Anchorage Democrat.

State Rep. Andy Josephson, an Anchorage Democrat who attended the meeting, says he will research the idea for a third-party independent review and consider introducing a bill for the next legislative session.

DOC officials say the recent deaths aren't out of the ordinary. According to officials, 10 to 12 people die in Alaska jails each year.

Nugget Falls trail open again
The Nugget Falls trail at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center is now open for hikers.

Although the end of the trail near the falls is still under about 12 inches of water, most of the trail is dry, with only a few sections of two to three inch deep puddles. These should be drying out today. The end of the trail that drops onto the alluvial terrace near the falls may remain submerged through today. Hikers should use caution.

The Forest Service advises not walking through deep water on slippery rocks.

For more information, contact the Juneau Ranger District at 907-586-8800 or the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center at 907-789-0097.

Murkowski responds after Begich touts cooperation
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski says she and Democratic Sen. Mark Begich agree on many issues specific to Alaska. But the Republican says there's a "real departure" in where the two stand on a number of national issues.

Murkowski was responding to a recent Begich ad highlighting their relationship. Begich, in recent campaign stops and interviews, has said the two vote together more than any other split-party delegation, speaking to the level of cooperation between them.

Murkowski told the Anchorage Daily News the Senate has taken a lot of procedural votes this year and her willingness to call for up-or-down votes on some of the president's nominees has influenced the numbers cited by Begich's campaign.

Begich spokesman Max Croes says the record shows the two work together to represent Alaska.

Human remains found at Kotzebue work site
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A $30 million renovation project at the airport in Kotzebue has been put on hold after human remains were found.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports part of a hip bone was found Sunday as a trench was being dug.

Alaska Department of Transportation Project Engineer Mark Figley says on-site archaeologists said the bone was "pretty old."

He says the find wasn't unexpected, and officials had discussed the possibility of this happening before work started. The shoreline has been inhabited for thousands of years.

No other remains were found, and the archaeologists determined the remains had been disturbed before. The bones will be reburied.

Figley expects work to resume soon on the project to lengthen the runway, reroute a road and move a lagoon..

Work should be done before December.

UAF starts laying off people to meet budget
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Pink slips are being delivered as the University of Alaska Fairbanks attempts to cut $12 million from this year's budget.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports at least 40 positions are being cut this summer.

Pat Pitney is the university's vice chancellor for administration. She says the university has little choice but to cut staff.

The university has suffered from declining state funding and rising fixed costs. UAF officials are implementing across-the-board cuts from between 3 percent to 6 percent for all academic units, which translates to lost jobs.

The university employs about 2,000 people, with most of them in Fairbanks. Officials hope attrition takes up the bulk of the lost positions, but Pitney says the reductions are more targeted in some cases.

Hearing held to address Alaska inmate deaths
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A legislative hearing to address a recent string of Alaska inmate deaths has prompted a call for legislation to establish a third-party independent review of such deaths.

The Anchorage Daily News reports the hearing in Anchorage Tuesday brought Department of Corrections officials together to answer for the deaths of five young inmates at state correctional institutions between April and June.

The packed hearing was convened by state Sen. Hollis French, an Anchorage Republican.

State Rep. Andy Josephson, an Anchorage Democrat who attended the meeting, says he will research the idea for a third-party independent review and consider introducing a bill for the next legislative session.

DOC officials say the recent deaths aren't out of the ordinary. According to officials, 10 to 12 people die in Alaska jails each year.

Man, teenage girl rescued at Mat-Su lake
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers and Wasilla police have helped in the rescue of a man and teenage girl from Lucile Lake.

KTUU reports the early Wednesday morning rescue occurred after authorities responded to reports of screaming coming from the area around the lake.

Police spokesman Rick Manrique says authorities found a submerged canoe and the man, who was taken to a local hospital.

A search was conducted for the girl, and hours later rescuers found her submerged in cold waters. She also was taken to the hospital.

The conditions of the man and girl were not immediately available.

New home sought for Bethel Senior Center
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Operators of the Bethel Senior Center are looking for a home to move into.

KYUK says the Orutsararmiut (oh-ROOT'-sah-rah-rah-mewt) Native Council runs the Eddie Hoffman Senior Center out of a city building, but the operators can't afford to stay there.

Operators are set to move out at the end of September and turn the building over to the city, which plans to mothball it.

Councilman Mark Springer, whose day job is to run the center, discussed options in a brief meeting of the Bethel City Council and ONC.

Springer says operators are confident of being able to find a place.

Possibilities include the Lions Club or the Lulu Herron Center, which provides senior housing.

Alaska State Troopers say officer wounded man
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say one of their officers has seriously wounded a man accused of pulling a gun on the trooper after a chase on the Sterling Highway south of Anchorage.

KTUU-TV reports that troopers say Seward police informed them about a despondent man traveling Tuesday afternoon on the Seward Highway. In a statement, troopers say they tried to stop that driver, who took off at a high rate of speed.

A trooper made contact with the man after he got out of a vehicle on the Sterling Highway.

Troopers say the man pulled a gun from his trunk, refused the officer's commands and was shot. He was taken to an Anchorage hospital for treatment of what were described as serious injuries.

No troopers were hurt.

Troopers spokeswoman Megan Peters said she didn't have any additional details.

Alaska abortion-funding law put on hold by judge
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A judge has temporarily blocked enforcement of an Alaska law that further defines what constitutes a medically necessary abortion for the purposes of Medicaid funding.

Superior Court Judge John Suddock says Planned Parenthood of the Great Northwest raises "substantial issues" going to the merits of the law and is entitled to a hearing.

Regulations, similar to the law passed this year, were previously stayed pending resolution of the lawsuit brought against the state by Planned Parenthood. The law, however, does not include consideration of psychiatric disorders. The regulations do.

Suddock, in his order Tuesday, said restrictive legislation "enhances the risk of constitutional invalidity."

Planned Parenthood is challenging the law and regulations as unconstitutional. Supporters of the measures have said the state should not be required to pay for elective abortions.

Some GCI customers need new email addresses
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Some GCI customers will have to get new email addresses.

Tose affected have emails that end in the domain "" About 3,000 people will need to change their addresses by the end of the year.

The domain came about years ago through an agreement with the Anchorage Daily News and GCI to cover all things Alaska. But the project never came to fruition, and GCI began issuing email addresses with the domain.

But now that the McClatchy Co. has sold the newspaper, GCI no longer has rights to use the email addresses.

GCI spokesman David Morris encourages people to get new addresses as soon as possible and not wait until Dec. 31.

Fort Knox wants to expands onto federal land
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A Fairbanks operator wants to expand its Fort Knox Gold Mine onto federal land.

Fairbanks Gold Mining Inc., which is owned by Kinross, has submitted the request to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management to expand the open-pit gold mine.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that if it's approved, the company could perform soil sampling, geologic mapping and drilling on nearly 2,000 acres now occupied by the National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration.

A permit would allow 250 bore holes to be drilled. Each hole would require a 24,00-square-foot drill pad.

NOAA uses the land next to the requested area for a satellite operations facility. It says it doesn't object, as long as the mine abides by certain conditions.

Public comment on the plan will be accepted until Aug. 11.

Pipeline project working to secure Nikiski land
UNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The senior project manager for the Alaska liquefied natural gas project says Nikiski remains the leading contender for the terminal site where gas would be liquefied and shipped to Asia.

Steve Butt says project officials are working with landowners on "fair and durable agreements." He says progress is being made but if for some reason the needed land cannot be secured, there are alternatives.

He declined to be more specific, except to say the alternative sites would be on the tidewater.

The project has moved into a phase of preliminary engineering and design that could last up to 20 months.

Butt says the name "Alaska LNG" has been trademarked for the project, and there are plans to submit an application for an export license soon.

Nome council ends debate on raising sin taxes
NOME, Alaska (AP) — Nome council members have rejected a proposal to let residents decide whether to increase taxes on alcohol and tobacco products.

KNOM reports the proposal would have put the question on an upcoming ballot to raise the tax to 10 percent from its current 8 percent.

Proponents say the added revenue would help pay for the economic burden that drinking and smoking bring to Nome, such as ambulance services and detention costs.

Police Chief John Papasadora also backed the higher taxes. He said across the board, their arrests are alcohol-related.

But three council members voted down the measure. Two of them, Stan Anderson and Louie Green Sr., said it was unfair for responsible drinkers and bar owners pay the tab for mistakes made by a few.

[Tuesday July 15th 2014  22nd  EDITION 5:26 P.M.]

Man kills bear trying to get into house
STERLING, Alaska (AP) — A Sterling man shot and killed a 9-foot brown bear that attempted to break into his home several times.

The Peninsula Clarion reports Jim Landess shot the 5-year-old male with a pistol July 7.

Landess told the Clarion in an email that the bear was pounding on the outside walls of his home.

He and a son were able to scare the bear off with a couple of shots fired into the air, and they went back to bed. But the bear came back about three hours later.

Landess said he grabbed his .45 pistol and fired about seven rounds at the bear from an upper deck.

Officials say Landess fulfilled his legal requirements by taking the hide and skull to authorities and filling out the proper paperwork.

Anchorage police move bear, cubs away from lake
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage police shot sponge rounds to encourage a black bear and her two cubs to leave a popular lake area on Tuesday afternoon.

Police spokeswoman Anita Shell says police fired two less-than-lethal rounds at the bear near Goose Lake, and turned the situation over to the Department of Fish and Game.

KTUU reports bears have been seen throughout the summer on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus. University officials sent an email to students telling them to be alert for the bears.

Goose Lake is a popular lake for Anchorage residents to swim, boat and tan.

Feds investigate after Petersburg explosion
PETERSBURG, Alaska (AP) — Authorities are investigating after a Petersburg resident was injured in an explosion.

KFSK reports that police are not releasing the name, gender or condition of the 59-year-old.

However, police say they got a 911 call Sunday afternoon. The caller said there was an injured person outside the hospital emergency room and dynamite might have been involved.

The person was moved inside the hospital, and officers found about 20 pounds of a gelatinized substance in a vehicle the person drove to the hospital. Authorities were consulted before the car was moved away.

FBI and Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agents arrived Monday to investigate.

Authorities have secured three sites in Petersburg. They say residue from unidentified explosion site and the vehicle tentatively been identified as a commercially available explosive.

5 Alaska wolf cubs arrive at new home in Minnesota
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Five wolf pups orphaned by a wildfire in Alaska are at their new home.

KTVA reports the wolves were flown from Anchorage to the Minnesota Zoo on Tuesday.

An official for the zoo near Minneapolis says the wolves will be quarantined for about a month before going on permanent display.

The five pups were taken to the Alaska Zoo in Anchorage on May 27 after being orphaned in the Funny River Fire on the Kenai (KEY'-nigh) Peninsula, near Soldotna.

The Alaska Zoo had the pups on display until Monday.

Governor to sign bill halting sale of ‘Spice’ in Alaska
ANCHORAGE-Governor Sean Parnell is planning to sign Senate Bill 173 on Wednesday in Anchorage. Sponsored by Senator Kevin Meyer (R-Anchorage), SB173 aims to stop the sale of illicit synthetic drugs by banning misleading statements on packaging. Currently, the synthetic drugs, which are commonly used as alternatives to marijuana and cocaine, are being sold legally in stores statewide as potpourri, bath salts, plant food, and even iPod cleaner.

“The real truth here is ‘Spice’ is not nice,” said Senator Meyer. “Kids and parents see it sold legally in stores, and they think it is ok, but it’s not. ‘Spice’ is very dangerous and responsible for hundreds of deaths every year in the United States. It is my hope this new approach for keeping it off store shelves will make a big impact.”

Move your vehicles, cleaning on Gastineau Avenue
The City and Borough Streets and Fleet Maintenance Division will be performing clean-up operations along Gastineau Avenue to remove winter chips and other debris from the storm drainage system beginning Wednesday morning at 7:00am and continue until completion which is anticipated to be around 4:00 PM Wednesday.

The affected area will be Gastineau Avenue between 2nd Street and 215 Gastineau Avenue. Notices will be posted in areas that are to be cleaned, with the yellow "NO PARKING" signs prior to beginning. If you see these signs in your area, please remove your vehicle from Gastineau Avenue prior to the commencement of cleaning in order to facilitate a thorough cleaning of the street and storm drain system. Vehicles left in the designated cleaning area will be subject to relocation to facilitate the work.

No evening bus service to Mendenhall Mall during construction
Due to construction in the Riverside Drive area Capital Transit bus service has been disrupted.

Service will be discontinued to the Mendenhall Mall after 6:00pm each night through Thursday, July 17th or until construction is complete.

Please wait for the bus either at the James Street or the Atlin Drive bus stops.

Kenai launches new patrol enforcement boat
KENAI, Alaska (AP) — The city of Kenai has obtained a new rescue patrol boat to help with enforcement of a no-wake zone on the Kenai River.

The Peninsula Clarion reports the fire department launched the 22-foot rigid hull inflatable boat with the Kenai River dipnet season.

When the tide reaches 20 ? feet, flashing lights are activated on buoys to tell boaters to slow down to 5 mph.

The no-wake rule was approved by the Kenai City Council in April after residents voiced concerns of bank erosion and property damage created from boat wakes through a mile-long channel.

Kenai Battalion Chief Tony Prior says the target area is patrolled only during high tide.

The $108,000 dollar boat replaces a 30-year-old riverboat. Most of the cost was paid by a state grant.

Capital City Fire Rescue responds to turkey fryer fire and leaking propane tank
Capital City Fire Rescue was dispatched to to a report of a propane leak at the Auke Bay fish boating dock this morning at 9:47. An unsecured 200lb propane tank was found to be leaking from the back of a U-haul van. The crew was able to get to the van and shut off the valve. No one was injured.

Capital City Fire Rescue also responded to a reported structure fire in the 4600 block of Sawa Circle Monday afternoon at 4:15. The homeowner had a turkey fryer on a countertop that had spontaneously ignited. There were active flames under the fire, but the oil itself did not catch on fire. The husband was able to throw the cooking unit and fire outside. There was minimal damage to the countertop. The new fryer was completely damaged. The cause was electrical.

Anchorage police investigate woman's death
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage police are investigating the death of a woman who was found outside near the downtown area.

Police received a report just before 5 a.m. Tuesday about the woman, who was discovered near 13th Avenue and Hyder Street.

According to police, the caller making the report said the woman appeared to be unconscious and not breathing.

At the scene, the woman was pronounced dead.

Begich reports his biggest fundraising quarter
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Mark Begich brought in more than $1.26 million during the last quarter, his biggest haul so far this cycle. But his campaign spent nearly $2 million toward his re-election bid.

As of June 30, the Alaska Democrat had about $2.2 million available.

Spokesman Max Croes says a big expense has been TV and radio buys, but says the campaign is well positioned financially.

Begich edged Republican rival Dan Sullivan in fundraising for the first time since Sullivan entered the race last October. Sullivan reported bringing in nearly $1.2 million, with $1.7 million available at the end of the quarter.

Other prominent Republicans in next month's primary are Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller.

A fourth candidate, John Jaramillo, hasn't reported any fundraising.

Tuesday marked the reporting deadline.

Official sees tie between gas project, referendum
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The senior project manager for a major liquefied natural gas project says the decision made on next month's oil tax referendum could impact the project.

Steve Butt says the state and companies that hold leases have a shared interest in trying to monetize the resource in a way that works for them all. He says if decisions are made that benefit one party at the expense of another, it compromises alignment.

The state's working with the North Slope's major players and TransCanada Corp. in pursuing the mega-project.

Comments similar to Butt's have been raised by others as an argument for keeping the oil tax cut lawmakers passed last year.

But Democratic Sen. Bill Wielechowski says the argument is being used as a threat so companies can keep the tax breaks.

UAF greenhouse to be dismantled
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The University of Alaska Fairbanks will have to find a home for more than 25,000 seedlings.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the university has to dismantle its 2,700-square-foot greenhouse to make way for a new power plant.

The $245 million power plant will also force the university to find a new place for a garden that provides free greens for both food services and student groups.

The greenhouse will be dismantled next month. Some of its pieces will be used in other buildings on campus or sold.

Now the search is on for a new space to grow the seedlings from February to May. The plants are used every spring to decorate campus.

Young holds cash edge in US House race
UNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Republican U.S. Rep. Don Young holds a huge cash advantage over his rivals as he seeks a 22nd term in the House.

Young brought in about $130,000 between April and June, with about $100,000 in contributions and the rest in the form of things like rebates and dividends. He ended the quarter with nearly $590,000 available.

The only other Republican candidate to file a report with the Federal Election Commission, John R. Cox, reported no contributions though he reported more cash on hand than at the end of the prior quarter, $4,300.

The most prominent Democratic candidate, Forrest Dunbar, brought in $36,500, all in individual contributions. He had about $31,000 available but still owed $6,000 to the state Democratic party.

Frequent candidate Frank Vondersaar, a Democrat, reported $100 on hand.

Anchorage police launch bicycle safety campaign
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage police have launched a bicycle safety campaign that involves treats from local businesses to reward children who wear their helmets while bicycling.

Police are partnering with the Alaska Injury Prevention Center and several local businesses for the APD Treat Beat.

In Anchorage, the law requires people 15 years of age and younger to wear helmets while bicycling in public places.

In the summer campaign, police officers will be on the lookout for young bicyclists who are caught wearing their helmets.

Youngsters with helmets could be presented with a "ticket" for such treats as ice cream cones or cookies.

Arbitrator sides with guard in Keyes' suicide case
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An arbitrator finds a corrections officer on duty the night Alaska serial killer Israel Keyes committed suicide should not have been fired by the state.

Loren Jacobsen was fired weeks after Keyes was found dead in his Anchorage cell in December 2012. Keyes had slit his wrist with a razor that another guard mistakenly gave him and also strangled himself with a makeshift noose.

The Anchorage Daily News reports from documents it obtained that Jacobsen was fired, even though he had turned over his duties to another officer and was on a sanctioned meal break when Keyes committed suicide. Jacobsen's union, the Alaska Correctional Officers Association, appealed.

An arbitrator said the firing wasn't justified. The union says the state made Jacobsen a scapegoat for its lax practices.

3 hikers get back to Anchorage before high tide
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Rescuers were called to get hikers trapped by the rising tide Monday night, but the three people were able to get back to Anchorage from Fire Island before high tide.

KTVA reports the three had to high-step through water above their knees Monday night to make it back to the Tony Knowles Coastal Trail in Anchorage before high tide came in.

The Anchorage Fire Department launched a boat to get the hikers before learning they were safely back on the Anchorage side.

Hazardous material containers cleaned up in Galena
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A state report on the response to the 2013 flooding in Galena says more than 5,000 containers of hazardous material scattered throughout the area during the disaster were collected.

The containers ranged from aerosol cans to 55-gallon drums, with the hazardous debris strewn within a 15-mile radius of the Yukon River village.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports heating oil from three homes spilled during the flood. But the state Department of Environmental Conservation, in its final report on the flooding, said those properties were cleaned up with no ongoing impacts.

An environmental program specialist with the agency estimated the cleanup cost at well over $1 million, costs that will be included as the state seeks reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Fair organizer asks vendors to skip new festival
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Organizers of the Tanana Valley Fair have asked their vendors not to do business with a new festival run by its former ride vendor.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports fair manager Joyce Whitehorn recently sent a message to vendors saying she had heard that Chugiak-based Golden Wheel amusements had asked vendors to ditch the fair.

The fair will overlap with the new Summer Spectacular carnival and music event for three days in early August.

Whitehorn says the fair will not penalize vendors who set up booths at both events, but those vendors will lose "grandfather" rights for future fairs.

Golden Wheel spokesman Chase Eckert disputes Whitehorn's statement that the company asked vendors to skip the fair.

He says Golden Wheel encourages vendors to participate in both events.

Kodiak borough may revisit fireworks law
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — There were fewer complaints after Fourth of July fireworks this year on Kodiak Island, but the ones that did come in may prompt changes in the borough's rules.

Kodiak Island Borough Manager Bud Cassidy says two people complained the borough's fireworks policy is failing. KMXT reports they asked officials to come up with another plan.

Cassidy said an investigation found area fire departments and Alaska State Troopers were extremely busy putting out fires caused by fireworks and addressing citizen concerns, including the litter from spent fireworks.

Assembly members say there's support to revisit the borough's fireworks ordinance before New Year's Eve.

One assembly member says fireworks should be kept out of residential areas. Bayside Fire Chief Bob Himes wants to take it further: an all-out ban.

Hackers gain brief access to Mat-Su website
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Online hackers succeeded in breaching the website for the Matanuska-Susitna Borough last week.

KTUU reports the hacker was able to get into the site Friday afternoon, and redirected users to an anti-Israel website.

Spokesman Stefan Hinman says staff members were able to disable the borough website within five minutes, and a fix was in place within another five minutes.

No sensitive information was ever at risk since the borough doesn't keep any information on line.

Borough staff members worked over the weekend to strengthen the site's security.

Forest Service announces return of salmon cam
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Federal officials say a salmon cam in Juneau is returning for a second year.

The U.S. Forest Service is streaming live from the bottom of Juneau's Stream Creek in the Tongass National Forest.

Officials say the cam operates around the clock. But they say there's insufficient light during some hours, so the best times for viewing are between 4:30 a.m. and 9:30 p.m. AKDT.

According to officials, viewers could see large salmon, as well as smaller Dolly Varden and cutthroat trout.

Officials say the cam located near the Mendenhall Glacier was viewed more than 28,000 times last year.

Dardenne, seafood board set cook-off for August
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The best seafood chef in the nation will be crowned Saturday, Aug. 2, in New Orleans when the 11th annual Great American Seafood Cook-Off is held.

Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne and the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board on Monday announced the competition won last year by Mississippi chef David Crews. It will be held at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.

Participating chefs represent Alabama, Alaska, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Utah and Virginia.

Judges include Ben Pollinger, executive chef of Oceana in New York; Kris Moon, James Beard Foundation; Barbara Mathias, co-publisher and vice president of Food Arts magazine; Brian West, chef-instructor at CIA-San Antonio and Susie Selby from Selby Winery.

Begich reports his biggest fundraising haul
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Mark Begich brought in just over $1.25 million during the last quarter, his biggest haul so far this cycle. But his campaign spent nearly $2 million toward his re-election bid.

As of June 30, the Alaska Democrat had about $2.2 million available.

Republicans see the Alaska race as key to their efforts to win back control of the Senate. The three most prominent Republican candidates are Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell, Joe Miller and former state Natural Resources commissioner Dan Sullivan.

The reporting deadline is Tuesday.

Begich spokesman Max Croes says 5,000 individual Alaskans have contributed to Begich's campaign so far, more than in 2008. He said one of the big expenses has been TV and radio buys, but he says the campaign continues to be well positioned financially.

Children's book series available in Cup'ik on app
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — A new app features a translation of a New Zealand children's book series into the Cup'ik language.

KYUK reports the Cup'ik Milly-Molly storybook app was developed with a language innovation grant from the Association of Alaska School Boards.

The grant was awarded to the school district for Chevak, one of two Bering Sea villages where Cup'ik is still spoken.

The association's Robert Whicker and other AASB members traveled to Chevak to help with the recording of the series in Cup'ik, but decided they could save time and money by sending Cup'ik speakers to a New Zealand recording studio.

Three months after the recording was completed, the Cup'ik versions of the series are now available in the iTunes store.

Whicker says it's a way of helping to preserve Native languages.

Coast Guard rescue
The Coast Guard received phone call last night regarding two separate boats that had launched from Auke Bay and headed to Barlow Cove the night before.

On their return to Auke Bay, they encountered heavy fog and became disoriented. The first boat made it back to Auke Bay.

The Coast Guard launched a 2- 110 foot cutters to help look for the other boat. The mariner was located around 8:30 on Caughlin Island two miles south of Auke Bay in good spirits. He had become disoriented due to the dense fog.

Report from Coast Guard Sector Juneau's Vince Grochowski.

[Monday July 14th 2014  13TH  EDITION 6:17 P.M.]

Palin PAC donations don't include Alaska race
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Sarah Palin's political action committee gave $40,000 to congressional candidates during the last quarter but none from Alaska.

Palin, a former Alaska governor, has not weighed in on the Republican race for U.S. Senate in the state. In 2010, she backed tea party favorite Joe Miller in a race won with a write-in campaign by incumbent Republican Sen. Lisa Murkowski.

Palin's SarahPAC reported bringing in about $460,000 from April through June. She ended the period with about $970,000 on hand.

Contributions to candidates included $5,000 to Dave Brat, a donation given the day after he upset then-U.S. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in Virginia.

Pro-Begich group raises $3.6M during 2nd quarter
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The super PAC Put Alaska First brought in $3.6 million during the last quarter and spent a huge chunk of it on ads against Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Dan Sullivan.

Put Alaska First, which is supporting Democratic Sen. Mark Begich, spent slightly more than it brought in from April to June, leaving it with about $5,100.

The haul was huge compared to the first quarter of 2014, when Put Alaska First brought in about $500,000. The group has typically ended its reporting periods with relatively little cash available.

It has been largely funded by the Senate Majority PAC, which is run by former aides to Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. And it's consistently hit at Sullivan, one of the three most prominent GOP contenders heading into next month's primary.

Murkowski thanks Coast Guard and pushes more Arctic Investment
Senator Lisa Murkowski today hammered home the need for more Arctic investment as she thanked the United States Coast Guard and the crew of the cutter Healy for their rescue mission of a stranded mariner attempting to sail through the Arctic region, saying: “While I realize that an icebreaker is a high cost item, America needs to step up its investment in the Arctic as the waters there open up to possible travel, economic and military activity."
She said, “The Altan Girl and its captain were lucky that the Healy icebreaker was nearby conducting a research project and could cut through the ice to rescue him, as helicopters were not an option due to weather."

Crossings of the famed Northwest Passage connecting the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic have become more prevalent in recent years. In 2012, a group of three sailors navigated one of the trickiest portions of the Northwest Passage from east to west, at the same time mariner David Scott Cowper was taking on a solo passage of the crossing. In 2013, French adventurer Charles Hedrich attempted a solo west-east crossing via rowboat, the same year that four Vancouver rowers failed in their own attempt to conquer the waterway.

Celebration incident witness search
The Juneau Police Department is seeking additional witnesses to several incidents at the Celebration Parade in June for the purpose of showing those witnesses a photo lineup to help police identify the suspect.

Multiple people have been interviewed during the month long investigation but many did not get a good look at the face of the suspect or became convinced that a Facebook picture that was being circulated was the suspect. Officers confirmed that the man in the Facebook picture was work at the time of the incident.

If you did see the man who kicked at traffic barricades on Main Street at the parking garage, was later at the Goldbelt Hotel and chanted a racial slur, and ultimately grabbed an American flag from the hands of a native man please call JPD. Some men pursued the suspect and took the flag back but JPD has not identified those men and would like to speak with them.

If you believe you saw the face of the suspect please contact Lt. Kris Sell at 586-0600.

New reindeer corral being built near St. Michael
NOME, Alaska (AP) — Volunteers are in the process of building a new corral for a reindeer herd on St. Michael Island.

KNOM reports the first fence posts went up Thursday at the new site, located about three miles southeast of the community of St. Michael.  The lease expired at the former site, owned by the Stebbins Native Corp., which is using that land for gravel excavation.

The herd is jointly owned by the Native Village of St. Michael, the Stebbins Community Association and the Katcheak family. One of the owners and the lifelong reindeer herder, Theodore Katcheak, said construction should take about two weeks. He says the herd does not make a profit, so they must rely on volunteers.

St. Michael is located about 120 miles southeast of Nome.

Fairbanks co-op gets national industry award
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A cooperative market in Fairbanks has received national recognition.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the Co-Op Market Grocery and Deli was named the co-op startup of year in 2013.

General manager Mary Christensen accepted the award at the Consumer Cooperative Management Association conference in Madison, Wisconsin.

The Fairbanks location opened last year in the former Foodland building.

It's experienced steady growth since opening and exceeded sales projections. The store now has 2,680 members and sales year this are expected to reach nearly $3 million.

Capital City Fire Rescue responds to Mendenhall River, Horse Island
Captain Roy Johnson says Sunday morning they were called to help two people in the Mendenhall River around 10:00.

By the time the water team units arrived, both people had self-evacuated the river. One patient was transported to Bartlett Regional Hospital for further care.

On Sunday morning around 11:30, Capital City Fire Rescue responded with two personnel by helicopter to an emergency medical incident on Horse Island. The helicopter was grounded shortly after take off due to inclement weather. The patient was brought in by boat. Advanced life support was provided and the patient was transported to Bartlett Regional Hospital.

UPDATE: US Coast Guard cutter rescues trapped sailboat from Arctic sea ice, tows vessel to open water
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - The U.S. Coast Guard has freed a Canadian sailboat that became trapped in Arctic ice off the north coast of Alaska.

KTUU-TV reports the 36-foot (11-meter) Altan Girl out of Vancouver was attempting to sail to eastern Canada through the Northwest Passage.

It became trapped in ice northeast of Barrow, the northernmost city in the United States.

The Coast Guard cutter Healy reached the sailboat, and with the Altan Girl in tow, on Saturday cut a 12-mile (19-kilometre) path through ice to open water.

The sailboat's owner says he intends to wait in Barrow for better weather and to restock supplies.

The Healy is on a National Science Foundation funded research mission in the Arctic. The Coast Guard says the cutter is continuing with its research.

Hooper Bay teen dies in apparent drowning
HOOPER BAY, Alaska (AP) — A Hooper Bay teenager has died in an apparent drowning.

Alaska State Troopers say 18-year-old Darin Long was found tangled Sunday in a partially deployed fishing net in a slough near the western Alaska village.

Troopers say Long had been subsistence fishing.

He was last seen by his family at about 11:30 p.m. Saturday and found after midnight.

He was pulled from the water and could not be resuscitated at the Hooper Bay clinic. He was pronounced dead at 3 a.m. Sunday.

Hooper Bay is a community of 1,134 about 500 miles west of Anchorage.

Oil spill response drill planned near Nome
NOME, Alaska (AP) — An oil spill response drill is set to take place at Port Clarence northwest of Nome Wednesday.

KNOM reports that spill response company Alaska Chadux is among those participating in the exercise near Teller and Brevig Mission. Chadux general manager Matt Melton says it's a new area for such a drill.

The goal is to deploy equipment from Nome to Teller on the 72-mile road connecting the two communities.

Melton says participants will put deflection boom on the Port Clarence side to simulate a fuel spill and try to keep the fuel out of Grantley Harbor.

Other participants are the Alaska Department of Conservation and Gay Sheffield, a marine biologist with the University of Alaska Fairbanks marine advisory program.

The exercise comes amid industrial projects proposed for the area.

Voter registration deadline
The State of Alaska, Division of Elections reminds us that the deadline to register or update your voter registration for the 2014 Primary election is July 20th.

Registration forms are available at any Division of Elections office, municipal offices, tribal offices, or online at

Information on prisoner deaths expensive to get
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A Department of Corrections official says a state agency is considering declassifying an unpublished regulation on investigating prisoner deaths.

Corrections deputy commissioner Sherrie Daigle told the Anchorage Daily News she only recently became aware of the regulation. But she said it could not be shared with the public now because the information could "threaten the safety and security of institutions." She did not say how.

The newspaper requested copies of the Department of Corrections' internal investigation documents related to inmate deaths from 2000 to 2012. The idea was to look at how the department evaluates its performance in cases of prisoners dying while in state custody.

The paper was told it would cost more than $4,000 and take more than 100 hours to locate and copy the files.

Bull gores Alaska rodeo promoter at his own event
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The co-founder of Rodeo Alaska is recovering after he was gored — but still managed to win a prize — at his own event.

The Anchorage Daily News reports 43-year-old Frank Koloski was competing in the "double mugging" event on Saturday.

In that contest, one cowboy on a horse ropes a steer while another on foot tries to wrestle the animal to the ground.

Koloski says the bull's horn punctured his stomach and went in 4 1/2 inches.

He says he tried to trot out of the arena afterward, but got lightheaded and fell. An ambulance took him to a hospital.

Koloski says he has been gored before, but never at his own rodeo.

He underwent surgery and is recovering.

He won the event, which gave him a $1,000 cash prize and a belt buckle.

Man charged with felony eluding on ATV
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A North Pole man was charged with felony eluding after a chase on an all-terrain vehicle outside the city.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports 22-year-old Dylan Longoria was arrested early Sunday.

Alaska State Troopers say they took a call through their Report Every Dangerous Driver Immediately program at about 3 a.m. reporting a yellow four-wheeler driving dangerously on roads between North Pole and Fairbanks.

Troopers say an officer tried to stop the driver but he led them on a chase until crashing.

Longoria was also charged with reckless driving, driving under the influence and refusing a DUI test.

He was released on bail Sunday.

UPDATE-Flood advisory cancelled
The National Weather Service has cancelled both of the flood advisories that were in effect until 5 am this morning for the Mendenhall Lake and and until 8 am for the Mendenhall River.

According to the National Weather Service, the water level on Mendenhall Lake peaked between midnight and 1 am this morning at 9.5 feet. Flood stage is 9.0 feet. A frontal boundary stalled over the region resulting in training rainfall
over the basin during Sunday. The water will then begin to subside during Monday as the rain dissipates.

Although both river and lake levels are high they are out of the "impact zone" and are receding.

No flooding has been reported under this new advisory.

New Flood Advisory
The National Weather Service has issued a flood advisory until 5 am akdt Monday morning for
the Mendenhall Lake...
a flood advisory until 8 am akdt Monday morning for the
Mendenhall River...

According to the National Weather Service, the water level on Mendenhall Lake peaked between midnight and 1 am this morning at 9.5 feet. Flood stage is 9.0 feet.

A frontal boundary stalled over the region resulting in training rainfall over the basin during Sunday. The water will then begin to subside during Monday as the rain dissipates.

* At a lake gage reading of 9.09 feet...water covers West Glacier
Spur Road between Skaters Cabin and West Glacier trailhead. Campsite
7 could be flooded along with water flowing over the road between
Campsites 8 and 9 in the Mendenhall campground.

No flooding has been reported under this new advisory.

Marketing Alaska
The state is formalizing the role of tourism businesses in marketing Alaska.

Governor Parnell last week signed a bill creating a Tourism Marketing Board within the Department of Commerce.
The board will have 21 members representing experts in the tourism industry, with 18 of the seats recommended by the Alaska Travel Industry Association. The other three seats are designated for members of the state House and Senate and Department of Commerce.

The new board does not change how tourism marketing funds are allocated, but allows the private sector to play a formal role in developing a marketing plan for the whole state.

[Sunday July 13th 2014  4th  EDITION 1:00 P.M.]

Glacial flood waters receding in Juneau
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Glacial flood waters are receding in Juneau after reach record levels at Mendenhall Lake and near-record levels along the Mendenhall River.

The subglacial lake was rising about three inches every hour since the water in Suicide Basin erupted Wednesday and began flowing under the Mendenhall Glacier and into Mendenhall Lake and Mendenhall River.

The National Weather Service says the lake rose as high as 11.81 feet Friday, breaking the record of 11.2 feet set in 1995. The Mendenhall River reached 13.52 feet at the Mendenhall Loop Bridge, just shy of the 13.8-foot mark also recorded on Sept. 11, 1995.

The river had dropped to 9.7 feet by 11 a.m. Saturday and the lake to 7.99 feet as of 2:15 p.m.

Rescue from sinking skiff in Ketchikan
Alaska State Troopers and United States Coast Guard responded to a reported skiff sinking in the Ketchikan channel near Pond Reef approximately 100 yards offshore Friday night.

Three wet individuals were found walking on the beach: 44 year old Andrew Shulll of Ketchikan, and his two minor children. Shull reported that he tossed a crab pot into the water and that the rope of the pot became tangled in the propeller. The weight shift on the vessel, while he attempted to cut the line, resulted in water overtaking the skiff.

The two minor children were wearing life jackets and all three swam to shore with no reported injuries. The vessel was partially submerged and recovery efforts will be made by Shull.

Coast Guard rescue sailboat trapped in Arctic ice
Coast Guard Cutter Healy crewmembers made contact with a mariner aboard his 36-foot sailboat trapped in Arctic ice approximately 40 miles northeast of Barrow, Alaska, Saturday.

Coast Guard 17th District watchstanders in Juneau were contacted by North Slope Borough Search and Rescue that a man, sailing his sailboat from Vancouver, Canada, to eastern Canada via the Northwest Passage, needed assistance after his vessel had become trapped in the ice.

(U.S. Coast Guard photo courtesy of Coast Guard Cutter Healy)

Public forum on oil tax structure teleconferenced around the state Monday
Representative Les Gara (D-Anchorage) will join speakers Lisa Weissler, Bill Corbus, and Jim Clark in a public discussion of oil taxation in advance of the statewide vote on Ballot Measure Number 1, a referendum on Senate Bill 21.

The forum, sponsored by "Juneau Votes", a non-partisan community project seeking to improve voter registration, information, and turnout, will be at Mendenhall Mall Monday from 5:00 – 7:00 PM, and via videoteleconference to all Juneau Public Libraries, Loussac Library in Anchorage, Kenai Community Library, and the Craig Public Library.

Proponents of Ballot Measure 1 will be:
? Lisa Weissler, a Juneau attorney specializing in oil, gas, and mining law
? Alaska Representative Les Gara

Opponents of SB 21 repeal are:
? Bill Corbus, former president, Alaska Electric Light & Power, and former Alaska Commissioner of Revenue
? Jim Clark, former Chief-of-Staff to Governor Frank Murkowski

The first hour of the forum will be presented in a structured format with questions prepared in advance and asked by a moderator. The second hour will consist of questions and answers, and is open to the public.

Interested persons may attend in person or watch and listen via the Library’s videoconferencing network.

Individuals at other sites throughout Alaska will receive live video and audio, and will be able to participate fully.

Officials assess damage from flooding in Juneau
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Officials are assessing the damage after water burst from a glacially dammed lake and caused flooding in Juneau.

The water crept up on homes and closed roads and hiking trails Friday. The water level at Mendenhall Lake reached 11.8 feet, breaking its old 1995 record of 11.18 feet, and the Mendenhall River saw near-record flows.

Laurie Sica (SEE'-kah), clerk for the city and borough of Juneau, said Saturday that the full extent of damage wasn't known, but at least one home suffered flood damage and at least a few others had water in their garages.

National Weather Service meteorologist Geri Swanson said power was restored Saturday to low-lying homes along View Drive and Mendenhall Lake campground.

State archives closing for 6 weeks
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Beginning Monday and lasting through Aug. 25, the Alaska State Archives Research Room will be closed and research services limited to an emergency-only basis.

That is to allow for staff to transfer and process 13,000 boxes from two other facilities to the new state library, archives and museum vault.

The state department of education, in a release, said that staff will fulfill emergency requests for student transcripts and address urgent reference questions on a case-by-case basis.

Deal reached over North Pole water contamination
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The state of Alaska is agreeing to share the preliminary costs to explore a water-system expansion in North Pole, where a refinery spill decades ago continues to contaminate groundwater.

The agreement covers the expense of developing the design, cost estimate and construction schedule for a water-main extension. It would serve 550 properties with water contaminated by sulfolane, an industrial chemical that was detected in groundwater in 2009.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that the agreement does not include a commitment to follow up with construction work, however.

The deal was announced Friday by the Attorney General Michael Geraghty's office. It requires the state, refinery owner Flint Hills Resources Alaska
and the refinery's former owner, Williams Alaska Petroleum, to equally share costs for the preliminary work.

Volunteers plan to move 60,000 books in Sitka
SITKA, Alaska (AP) — Volunteers in Sitka are getting ready for a big move.

The Daily Sitka Sentinel reports volunteers will begin moving 60,000 books and other items from Kettleson Library to make way for a major remodeling project at that city library.

The library will be closed, and volunteers will begin shuffling materials to a temporary home at the shuttered Stratton Library on the former Sheldon Jackson College campus.

Stratton has been closed since the college went out of business in 2007. It's been purchased by the state for an eventual conversion into an extension for the Sheldon Jackson Museum.

The library should reopen in the temporary space no later than Aug. 19.

Kodiak students learn all things Russian at camp
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — It will be a different type of experience for children attending camp in Kodiak this coming week.

The Kodiak Daily Mirror reports Kodiak students will learn Russian songs and dances at a cultural camp.

During the weeklong camp, students will experience traditional Russian food, clothing, music, folk tales and dances.

The camp is being sponsored by the Baranov Museum, the Kodiak Russian Balalaika players and the Kodiak Arts Council.

Baranov Museum Curator of Education Sarah Harrington says it will give the children background on the diversity that supports the Kodiak community.

[Saturday July 12th 2014 10th EDITION 7:56 P.M.]

UPDATE: Forest Service reopens Mendenhall campground
JUNEAU, AK, July 12, 2014 - Tongass National Forest officials continue to assess and reopen facilities and recreation areas affected by Friday’s glacier outburst flooding.

The following areas are now open to the public:
-The Mendenhall Campground will re-open at 5 p.m. today, July 12.
-Mendenhall Glacier Visitors Center.
-Skaters Cabin road.
-Photo Point trail.
-Steep Creek trail.
-West Glacier trail.
-Glacier Spur Road.
-Trail of Time.
-East Glacier trail.
-Moraine Ecology trail.
-The lake is now open to all watercraft.

The only area that remains closed is Nugget Falls trail and it will be reopened as soon as the water recedes to about the 7.3-foot lake level and the Forest Service determines the area is safe for public use.

Coast Guard assists injured fisherman near Hinchinbrook Island, Alaska
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard responded to a fisherman who suffered an eye injury aboard the 29-foot motor vessel Lanikai approximately seven miles from Cape Hinchinbrook, Saturday.

A nearby Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew, forward deployed in Cordova, rendezvoused with the vessel and lowered a rescue swimmer who stabilized the patient while the vessel returned to Cordova.

Sector Anchorage command center watchstanders received a notice via VHF that a crewmember had an eye injury and needed medical treatment. The watchstanders directed a Jayhawk crew training in the area to respond to the injured mariner.

“This case illustrates the training and professionalism of our Coast Guard members,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Lindsey Green, a watchstanders at Sector Anchorage command center. “Our crews are always ready to respond, even during training flights, to ensure safety of life at sea.”

Weather at the time of the incident was reported as 17 mph and 3-foot seas.

Coast Guard, local fire department assists injured mariner near Valdez, Alaska
KODIAK, Alaska — A Coast Guard Station Valdez 45-foot Response Boat – Medium crew with two members of the Valdez Fire Department assisted an injured 25-year-old man reportedly suffering from a head injury aboard a jet boat near Valdez, Saturday.

The Coast Guard crew transported the Valdez Fire Department emergency medical technicians to assess the injured man and transported him to awaiting emergency medical services in Valdez.

Sector Anchorage command center watchstanders received a notice from the crew of the jet boat who reported that a crewmember had suffered a head injury while the jet boat had another vessel in tow. The watchstanders then directed the launch of the RB-M to respond to the injured mariner.

“This case illustrates the great relationships we have with our local agencies,” said Petty Officer 1st Class Andrew Sheean, a watchstander at Sector Anchorage command center. “Without the assistance of the Valdez Fire Department, we would not have been able to assist the man as quickly as we did to get him to the medical care he needed.”

Weather at the time of the incident was reported as 17 mph winds and 1-foot seas.

Tongass National Forest officials are assessing damage; re-opening some areas
JUNEAU, AK, July 12, 2014 - Tongass National Forest officials are assessing damage to facilities and recreation areas today caused by Friday’s glacier outburst flooding. The following areas are now open to the public:
-Mendenhall Glacier Visitors Center.
-Skaters Cabin road.
-Photo Point trail.
-Steep Creek trail.
-West Glacier trail.
-Glacier Spur Road. Parking is not allowed on the inbound lane of the spur road between the bus lot and end of road.
-Trail of Time.
-East Glacier trail.
-Moraine Ecology trail.
-The lake is now open to all watercraft.

Hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Sunday through Saturday.

The following areas remain closed as Forest Service personnel assess damage:

-Mendenhall Campground. Campground remains gated and electricity is turned off. A section of road in the campground was damaged.
-The fish cam and beaver cam at the Pavilion have been shut off until further notice.
-Nugget Falls trail will be reopened as water recedes to about the 7.3-foot lake level. The Forest Service will check for any damage to the tread at the end of the trail once water recedes to determine if it’s safe for public use.

Deal reached over North Pole water contamination
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The state of Alaska is agreeing to share the preliminary costs to explore a water-system expansion in North Pole, where a refinery spill decades ago continues to contaminate groundwater.

The agreement covers the expense of developing the design, cost estimate and construction schedule for a water-main extension. It would serve 550 properties with water contaminated by sulfolane, an industrial chemical that was detected in groundwater in 2009.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that the agreement does not include a commitment to follow up with construction work, however.

The deal was announced Friday by the Attorney General Michael Geraghty's office. It requires the state, refinery owner Flint Hills Resources Alaska and the refinery's former owner, Williams Alaska Petroleum, to equally share costs for the preliminary work.

EVAR Re-opening
The Juneau International Airport has announced that the Emergency Vehicle Access Road (EVAR), commonly referred to as the Airport Dike Trail, is reopened to vehicle and pedestrian traffic as of Saturday, July 12, 2014 at 4:00 p.m.

Flood warning cancelled: water level starts to drop on Mendenhall Lake
The National Weather Service has cancelled the flood warning, the water level on Juneau's Mendenhall Lake has begun to drop after setting a record.

Authorities have been monitoring the lake and Mendenhall River to see when they would crest following the release of water from a glacially dammed lake.

The old record of 11.18 feet on the lake, set in 1995, was broken by Friday afternoon. The lake reached a record level of 11.8 feet, then dropped slightly. The Weather Service says the river level has also dropped slightly.

Floodwaters crept up on homes and closed side roads and popular hiking trails on Friday. Officials tried to keep curious onlookers off a bridge overlooking the churning Mendenhall River.

Coast Guard, State Troopers respond to vessel taking on water near Dillingham
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard and Alaska State Troopers responded to four mariners in distress after their 32-foot fishing vessel Just In Time began taking on water near Dillingham, Friday.

Alaska State Troopers provided the crew of Just In Time a dewatering pump and a damage control kit to patch the hole, and stayed with the vessel to escort the mariners back to Dillingham.

Sector Anchorage watchstanders monitored a mayday call from the owner of Just In Time that his vessel was taking on water. The watchstanders issued an urgent marine information broadcast and two Alaska State Trooper patrol vessels responded to provide assistance.

“This case illustrates the indispensable partnership between the Coast Guard and our Alaskan state partners,” said Petty Officer 1st Class James Fangman, a watchstander at Coast Guard 17th District command center. “The quick response to our broadcast by the Alaska State Troopers ensured that the mariners in distress were able to safely get back underway and make it to port.”

Weather at the time of the incident was reported as 15 mph winds and 11-mile visibility.

Cabbie acquitted
An Anchorage jury acquitted a former cab driver accused of raping a passenger.

The jury on Friday found 46-year old Chidibiere "Norman" Nwokorie not guilty
on all four charges of sexual assault.

Nwokorie had given a free ride to a woman in August, 2011. He was accused of
taking her to the cab service yard in the ship creek area and sexually assaulting her.

Assistant District Attorney Jason Gist told the Anchorage Daily News
that jurors apparently could not shake their doubts about what really happened.

Because Nwokorie had been allowed to continue driving while released on bail,
the Anchorage Assembly passed an ordinance allowing chauffer licenses to be suspended
if drivers use their vehicles in the commission of a crime.

NBC's 'Today" live broadcast draws 1,500 in Juneau
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Juneau residents came out in droves this week to see some live television.

About 1,500 residents were on hand Thursday as NBC's "Today" did a live segment from Mendenhall Glacier.

Since the segment was live for East Coast audiences, that meant the show started at 3 a.m. local time in Alaska's capital.

Officials say people started lining up at the visitor center pavilion about 1:30 a.m., and the parking lot opened 30 minutes later.

The travel tourism segment was hosted by the show's Natalie Morales who spent two days in Juneau kayaking on Mendenhall Lake, ice climbing and flying in a helicopter above the glacier.

[Friday July 11th 2014  20th  EDITION 7:18 P.M.]

Forest Service provides update on Mendenhall Lake, trails

JUNEAU, AK, July 11, 2014 - The Tongass National Forest has closed the following areas because of glacier outburst flooding. Flooding continues according to the National Weather Service, but the lake levels have been dropping since 4:30 p.m.

-Nugget Falls trail closed this morning, July 11.
-West Glacier trail closed this morning, July 11 (as part of the closure of Skater’s  Cabin road).
-Photo Point trail closed at 1:15 p.m. today, July 11 (lake level was 11.1 feet). 
-The main path of the Visitor Center will be closed at 7:30 p.m. July 11 coinciding with the Visitor Center closing.

-The fish cam and beaver cam at the Pavilion have also been shut off until further notice.

-Skaters Cabin road is closed until further notice.

-Glacier Spur Road remains open. Traffic is heavy tonight on the Glacier Spur Road and parking will be challenging as people view flooded areas. The bus lot will be available for bus and tour operator parking only (no private vehicles) until 7:30 p.m. It will be opened to private vehicles after 7:30 p.m. Parking is not allowed on the inbound lane of the spur road between the bus lot and end of road.
-Entire Mendenhall Glacier Recreation Area closes at midnight (normal hours) and will open at 6 a.m. Saturday, July 12, (normal opening time).

The following areas remain open:
-Steep Creek trail.

-Trail of Time remains open as does East Glacier trail, and the Forest Service does not foresee closing these trails.
-Moraine Ecology trail is open but the public cannot launch watercraft from this area.
-The lake remains closed to all watercraft due to the unusual hazards associated with the flood.

Forest Service officials have not yet witnessed any unusual calving of the glacial terminus yet.

National Weather Service says record lake crest, water levels to subside
The Mendenhall Lake crested at 11.8 ft. and the Mendenhall River crested at about 13.5 ft. Friday afternoon.

The lake itself managed to go past the previous record height of 11.2 feet in 1995, but the Mendenhall River fell just shy of it's record level of 13.8 also in 1995.

Meteorologist Brian Bezenek, with the National Weather Service in Juneau, says it appears the water levels are going to subside overnight and into early tomorrow.

(Aerial photo of flooding Friday)

CBJ:  Mendenhall Flood Update

Reports from the National Weather Service indicate the Mendenhall River has crested and the flood has reached its peak and has begun to subside.

CBJ first responders are still working to ensure public safety.

As of 6:00 PM Friday, View Drive remains closed. The barricades along Riverside Drive from Rivercourt Drive to Killewich Avenue are being removed.

People should stay away from the banks of the Mendenhall River as the banks are unstable and could easily give way.

New water level set on Mendenhall Lake
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A record flood level has been set on Juneau's Mendenhall Lake.

National Weather Service meteorologist Nicole Ferrin says the lake reached 11.56 feet on Friday afternoon. The prior record was 11.18 feet, in 1995.

Authorities were monitoring the lake and Mendenhall River, to see when they would crest following the release of water from a glacially dammed lake. The glacial outburst is expected to be worse than one in 2011, which resulted in the closure of some spur roads and some water getting into garages.

Floodwaters crept up on homes and closed side roads and popular hiking trails Friday. Mendenhall River churned up whitewater, as authorities tried to keep curious onlookers off the bridge overlooking it.

(Photos taken Friday at 1PM near the high school: courtesy of Kelly Tkachenko)

CBJ Flood Update
CBJ staff continues to monitor flooding. The Mendenhall River is still rising and there is no sign of the flood subsiding at this time. CBJ has closed View Drive and all roads leading into Meander Way, from Rivercourt Drive to Killewich Avenue along Riverside Drive. This is a voluntary closure at this time. Non-essential persons should stay out of the area. The roads may become impassible due to flooding from high water on the Mendenhall Lake and River.

Power was shut off to View Drive and the Mendenhall Campground and may be shut off to isolated areas affected by flood water. The Airport Dike Trail and the Kaxdigoowu Heen dei Park Trail, aka “Brotherhood Bridge Trail” are closed, including the pedestrian bridge.

Do not walk or drive through flooded areas. People should stay away from the banks of the Mendenhall River as the banks are unstable and could easily give way. Do not stop or stand on bridges to take photographs. Local agencies are monitoring the situation and will continue to provide updates.

Persons living anywhere along the river corridor should think about personal plans for flooding and be prepared. Everyone in the community, regardless of location, is encouraged to have a personal “go bag” of emergency supplies.

Learn more about preparedness here.
View the National Weather Service hydrographs for Mendenhall Lake here.
View the National Weather Service Mendenhall River hydrograph here.

Power temporarily disconnected in some areas due to rising waters
With the flood warning for Juneau and rising water in Mendenhall Lake, AEL&P has temporarily disconnected electrical service to View Drive and the Mendenhall Lake Campground.

Debbie Driscoll, Spokesperson for AEL&P - Alaska Electric Light & Power, says they watching the water levels closely. "This is temporary until the water recedes a bit and it's a safety precaution." Driscoll says they are keeping their eyes on other areas that are likely to flood.  If the water gets dangerously close to homes or electrical equipment, power to those areas will be disconnected too.  She says they will keep customers updated on their website:

UPDATE: Mendenhall closures
CBJ is restricting access to all roads leading into Meander Way by placing barricades on all roads into the area. Due to high water levels on the Mendenhall River, the area has a high potential for flooding of the streets. Recognize that even if water does not crest the banks it is possible for streets to become flooded through the storm drain system.

This is a voluntary closure at this time.

People should not walk or drive through flooded areas.

The Kaxdigoowu Heen dei Park Trail, aka "Brotherhood Bridge Trail" is closed, including the pedestrian bridge.

People should stay away from the banks of the Mendenhall River as the banks are unstable and could easily give way.

Do not stop or stand on bridges to take photographs.

Local agencies are monitoring the situation and will continue to provide updates.

Persons living anywhere along the river corridor should think about personal plans for flooding and be prepared. Everyone in the community, regardless of location, is encouraged to have a personal "go bag" of emergency supplies. To learn more about preparedness, go to:

To view the National Weather Service hydrographs for Mendenhall Lake go to:

For the National Weather Service Mendenhall River hydrograph go to:

Closures, cautions with impending Mendenhall flooding
JUNEAU, AK, July 10, 2014 — In anticipation of a significant glacier outburst flood affecting Mendenhall Lake and Mendenhall River, the Tongass National Forest is preparing to close a number of recreation facilities adjacent to the lake and prohibiting the use of watercraft on the lake itself.

The National Weather Service has predicted that Mendenhall Lake will reach a record flood stage on Friday.

The Mendenhall Lake Campground is now closed to new visitors. On Friday, the West Glacier Road and all facilities reached from the road – including the Mendenhall Lake Campground, Skaters Cabin and West Glacier Trail – will be closed and evacuated to protect public safety.

On the lake’s east side, the Nugget Falls Trail will also be closed, and the Photo Point Trail will be monitored for potential closure. In addition, the use of any sort of watercraft on the lake will be prohibited due to the significant risk to boaters posed by strong currents and waves from calving ice. These closures will remain in effect until further notice.

Forest Service officials would like to stress the high risk to anyone who is on or near the glacier during the flood, due to the high likelihood of unpredictable effects. According to scientists at the University of Alaska Southeast, the flood may cause ice caves to collapse, create unexpected movements in the glacier, or result in rock and icefalls from the face of the glacier.

“This flood event is Mother Nature showing its strength and power, and I urge everyone to respect that power by observing from a safe distance,” said Ed Grossman, Juneau Ranger District recreation manager.

The National Weather Service water level gauge at Mendenhall Lake can be monitored on the web at

Flood waters rise following glacial outburst
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Floodwaters have begun creeping up on homes, closing side roads and popular hiking trails, following the release of water from a glacially dammed lake in Juneau.

The National Weather Service is forecasting record-high flood levels on Mendenhall Lake and Mendenhall River, of about 12 feet and 15 feet, respectively.

The Mendenhall River roared Friday morning, as some residents in the area watched water levels lap up into their yards. Residents along View Drive filled sandbags Thursday, some of which dotted yards Friday morning.

Given the forecast, meteorologist Robert Tschantz said residents along the entire stretch of the river should be vigilant.

Authorities had planned to evacuate the Mendenhall Lake campground Friday morning, but Ed Grossman, with the U.S. Forest Service, said campers were moved out Thursday night.

Special Airport Meeting Monday
The Airport Board will hold a special Airport Board meeting on Monday at 5:00 p.m. in the Alaska Room.

The topics for this meeting will be the Runway Rehabilitation Local Match and State and Federal Funding Request List for the City.

The agenda is available here.

Teenager pleads guilty to felony in fatal crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An 18-year-old Anchorage man involved in a fatal 2013 car crash has reached a plea agreement with prosecutors.

Prosecutor Daniel Shorey says Murphy Madison Gross pleaded guilty Thursday to criminally negligent homicide and three counts of misdemeanor assault.

KTUU-TV reports Gross was originally charged with five felonies in the Feb. 6, 2013, crash in midtown Anchorage.

Investigators say Gross ran a red light at Northern Lights Boulevard and A Street and T-boned a Jeep Cherokee.

The crash killed 27-year-old Catherine Cope, a mother of two, and injured three others.

Cope had driven to pick up her husband from his job at Guido's pizza parlor. Ryan Cope got behind the wheel of their SUV and was giving a ride to two co-workers.

Gross is scheduled for sentencing Nov. 13.

Well-known humpback whale killed in boat collision
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A 48-foot female humpback whale that has been seen in the waters of southeast Alaska for nearly 40 years has been found dead.

Officials determined it had been killed in a collision with a boat, and federal law enforcement officers are investigating.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration on Friday said a necropsy has been performed on the whale known by several names, including Max and No. 539.

The lead veterinarian says the whale's left mandible, or jawbone, was fractured and the right mandible was "traumatically dislocated form the cranium."

Officials said it likely only had been dead a few days when it was found July 1.

Officials said the whale was first seen in 1975 in southeast Alaska. She had at least five calves, and they produced at least three more.

New Troopers Public Service Video targets aggressive driving
(ANCHORAGE, Alaska) – Yesterday, as a part of our ongoing efforts to curb major injury and fatal collisions on Alaska’s roadways, the Department of Public Safety released a public service announcement in hopes of reducing dangerous driving such as speeding, passing in no passing zones and tailgating.

The PSA provides safety information to the motoring public. It will run on some television and radio stations and on GCI cable July 10th through 24th.

Unfortunately, Alaska has experienced 35 roadway fatalities since the beginning of 2014. DPS encourages all motorists to use extra care and practice safe driving behaviors at all times while traversing Alaska’s roads.

Another poor walrus harvest for St Lawrence Island
NOME, Alaska (AP) — The number of walrus harvested for subsistence is well below normal for the second straight year on St. Lawrence Island.

Jim MacKracken supervises the walrus program for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. He says the harvest is about half of what the average take has been over the last decade.

While some hunters are still out, KNOM reports the majority of walrus pods are past the island.

MacKracken says the total take so far is about 345 animals. He says the reason for the poor harvest is the same as last year, based on what he's heard from hunters: weather, and ice conditions.

The state last year declared an economic disaster for the area because of the low harvest.

Juneau Police: car theft
Sometime between Sunday and Wednesday, a 1998 darkgreen Saturn 4-door sedan was stolen while parked in the 400 block of Harris Street.

Tips can be given anonymously online at

3-day tax haul from Washington pot sales: $148,256
SEATTLE (AP) — Washington will haul in nearly $150,000 in excise taxes from the first three days of legal marijuana sales — and that doesn't include state and local sales taxes.

Randy Simmons, the Liquor Control Board's project manager for legal pot, says that's not bad, considering the market is in its infancy, with only a few stores open statewide.

The law voters passed in 2012 to legalize pot for adults specifies that excise taxes of 25 percent are imposed when producers sell their product to licensed retail stores, and another 25 percent is imposed when shops sell to consumers.

All excise taxes due from the first day of sales Tuesday totaled $61,604. The figure dipped to $30,924 on Wednesday, and rose to $55,728 on Thursday, for a total of $148,256.

California man catches 482-pound halibut in Alaska
SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — A California man hooked the catch of a lifetime while on vacation in Alaska.

The Orange County Register reports Friday that 76-year-old Jack McGuire of Santa Ana caught a 482-pound Pacific halibut.

McGuire struggled for 40 minutes before the giant fish was reeled in.

His catch outweighs the 459-pound Pacific halibut caught in Alaska in 1996 that is currently the world record, but it doesn't meet International Game Fish Association regulations.

The halibut was shot, then harpooned before it was brought aboard the boat, disqualifying the catch from being considered for a world record.

McGuire was on a weeklong fishing trip near Glacier Bay with his three children when he caught the 95-inch-long fish. He has been fishing since age 6.

Baby born by C-section from mother in coma
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A baby has been born to an Alaska woman in a coma and listed as clinically brain dead for most of the pregnancy.

KTVA reports that baby Faith was delivered by cesarean section Tuesday.

Her mother, Jessie Ayagalria of Bethel, suffered cardiac arrest in January. Doctors discovered she was 12 weeks pregnant.

She was transferred to an Anchorage hospital, where doctors said she had no brain wave activity. However, a neurologist said it was possible for her to carry the baby.

Ayagalria's mother, Shirley Jerry, says family members agreed to try, and had her daughter put on life support.

Jerry says it was amazing to hold her granddaughter, who was born at 35 weeks. But the birth comes with mixed emotions since Ayagalria has returned to hospice care.

Jerry will care for Faith.

Alaska Native land-claims leader dies
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Alaska Native leader Don Wright, who was a force behind the 1971 Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, has died at age 84.

Doyon Ltd, the Fairbanks-based regional Native corporation, says in a release that Wright died Saturday, July 5.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner says Wright was president of the Alaska Federation of Natives in 1971 when then-President Richard Nixon signed into law the claims settlement.

The law compensated Alaska Natives for loss of lands historically used. It led to establishment of regional and village Native corporations with the right to select 44 million acres of land and appropriated $962.5 million to them.

Doyon, one of the regional Native corporations created under the law, says Wright was a champion for Alaska.

Wright's funeral will take place in Nenana July 26.

Sinkhole repair closes Fairbanks bridge
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A Fairbanks bridge over the Chena (CHEE NUH) River is closing Friday to allow workers to repair a nearby sinkhole.

Fairbanks Public Works Director Mike Schmetzer says the Wendell Avenue Bridge is closing.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the sinkhole is about 7 feet deep and the size of a volleyball near the surface.

The sinkhole is one of several that opened up recently after heavy rain.

One sinkhole on a resident's lawn was estimated to be 80 feet deep.

The University of Alaska Fairbanks has reported three sinkholes. An employee cutting grass with a riding mower on the east side of campus Thursday was stopped when ground opened beneath the mower's left wheel.

That sinkhole was about 10 feet deep.

Woman cited for photographing while driving
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A woman observed driving erratically between Palmer and Wasilla has been cited for taking pictures of herself while driving.

The Anchorage Daily News reports 59-year-old Susan Fellows was cited Tuesday afternoon.

Alaska State Troopers say they took a call from their "Report Every Dangerous Driver Immediately Program" about a car weaving on the Palmer-Wasilla Highway.

An officer stopped Fellows near the Glenn Highway intersection.

Fellows was issued a misdemeanor citation for texting while driving.

State lawmakers banned texting while driving in 2012.

Ribbon seal shows up in Prince William Sound
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Prince William Sound hosted an unusual visitor this week.

APRN reports a federal wildlife technician on Wednesday photographed a ribbon seal on ice.

Marty Reedy was at the wheel of a boat taking part in a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service seabird and marine mammal survey.

He has also worked in the Beaufort and Chukchi seas and immediately recognized the animal that is found in those waters.

Seal expert Peter Boveng of the National Marine Mammal Lab in Seattle says ribbon seals spend winters in the Bering Sea and the Sea of Okhotsk (oh-KOOTSK').

He says roaming seals have been seen as far south as British Colombia and Washington.

CBJ makes board appointments, others still open
The City and Borough of Juneau Assembly, at a Special Assembly Meeting held Thursday, July 10, 2014, made the following appointments to the Airport, and Docks and Harbors Boards.

Airport Board: The Assembly reappointed incumbent Malcolm Menzies and appointed new member Dennis Harris to the Airport Board, each for three year terms beginning July 10, 2014 and expiring June 30, 2017.

Docks and Harbors Board: The Assembly reappointed incumbents E. Budd Simpson and John A. Bush along with new member David Summers to three year terms on the Docks and Harbors Board beginning July 10, 2014 and expiring June 30, 2017.

The Assembly would like to thank outgoing member Ron Swanson for his many years of service on the Airport Board and Docks and Harbors Board member Kevin Jardell for his service on that board.

The Assembly would also like to thank all those individuals who are willing to serve and have submitted applications for consideration. CBJ still has a number of vacant seats on a variety of boards and commissions and anyone interested in serving is encouraged to submit an application.

Additional information is available online at:

The Full Assembly sitting as the Human Resources Committee will be meeting on Thursday, July 17 to make appointments to the Eaglecrest Ski Area Board.

Dino footprints
Fossilized dinosaur footprints in Denali National Park suggest mixed-age herds roaming Alaska in the late Cretaceous period.

A study published in the journal "Geology" describes the tracks of Hadrosaurs found in the Cantwell Formation.

The duck-billed herbivores left footprints of different sizes, indicating four different age groups traveling together 70 million years ago.

Lead author Anthony Fiorillo tells the Anchorage Daily News that the tracks are a clue to the "social sophistication" of Hadrosaurs, with extended parental care.

The tracks, which have been studied for the past decade, are the largest collection of dinosaur footprints found so far north.

Acting Bethel police chief named to post
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — A Bethel police lieutenant has been named as the town's police chief.

KYUK says Andre Achee had been working as acting chief since spring.

Achee replaces former chief Larry Elarton, who resigned after serving at the top spot since 2008.

Achee has worked for the Bethel Police Department for more than 20 years. In that time, he served nine years as a lieutenant.

His new position is official Friday.

Meetings to give update on pipeline project
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Community meetings are planned for next week to provide an update on the proposed liquefied natural gas project.

Meetings are scheduled for Tuesday in Anchorage and Thursday in Fairbanks.

The parties involved in the project recently signed an agreement that moves the effort into a phase of preliminary engineering and design.

Kodiak has most expensive haircut in the US
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — If you've seen a lot of long-haired men on Alaska's Kodiak Island, this might be the reason.

A new study finds the City of Kodiak has the priciest men's haircut in the nation, on average at $26.67 a cut. The national average is $13.95 a cut.

The Kodiak Daily Mirror reports this is included in a state labor department report comparing cost of living data for more than 300 cities. Among those were Kodiak, Fairbanks, Anchorage and Juneau.

There's good news in the report if some Kodiak men are embarrassed by their long locks and want to hide in a dark place.

It says Kodiak has the most inexpensive movie ticket in Alaska, at $6 on average. That's well below the average ticket price of $10.68 in Anchorage.

Anchorage man dies in collision on Glenn Highway
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a 67-year-old Anchorage man has died after his truck collided with a motor home on the eastern section of the Glenn Highway.

Troopers say Casar Justo Lao-Ing was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash Thursday at milepost 122 of the highway.

The occupants in the Winnebago are the driver, 69-year-old William Glen Briggs, and his wife, 68-year-old Linda Lou Briggs, both of Donna, Texas.

Troopers say the couple was flown by helicopter to Providence Alaska Medical Center. Troopers say William Briggs sustained serious injuries that are not believed to be life-threatening and that Linda Briggs received minor injuries.

Lao-Ing's body was taken to the state medical examiner's office.

Troopers say they are investigating the collision, which occurred when Lao-Ing's truck crossed the center line.

[Thursday July 10th 2014  12th  EDITION 6:35 P.M.]

Video debut: The Empty Chair
Greg Chaney’s documentary titled The Empty Chair kicks off a series of events planned for the Empty Chair Memorial Dedication this weekend. The first showing is at noon Friday at the 20th Century Theatre in downtown Juneau and again on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. at the Nickelodeon Theatre.

The Empty Chair Memorial will be dedicated in Capital School Park Saturday at 2:00 p.m.  The Empty Chair Project is a memorial to the WWII Japanese-American internees of Juneau.

UPDATE:  Flood Warning, closings
Mendenhall Lake, campground, and trails are closing for public safety during this flood event.

In anticipation of a significant glacier outburst flood affecting Mendenhall Lake and Mendenhall River, the Tongass National Forest is preparing to close a number of recreation facilities adjacent to the lake and prohibiting the use of watercraft on the lake itself. The National Weather Service has predicted that Mendenhall Lake will reach a record flood stage on Friday.

The Mendenhall Lake Campground is now closed to new visitors. On Friday, the West Glacier Road and all facilities reached from the road – including the Mendenhall Lake Campground, Skaters Cabin and West Glacier Trail – will be closed and evacuated to protect public safety. On the lake’s east side, the Nugget Falls Trail will also be closed, and the Photo Point Trail will be monitored for potential closure. In addition, the use of any sort of watercraft on the lake will be prohibited due to the significant risk to boaters posed by strong currents and waves from calving ice. These closures will remain in effect until further notice.

Forest Service officials would like to stress the high risk to anyone who is on or near the glacier during the flood, due to the high likelihood of unpredictable effects. According to scientists at the University of Alaska Southeast, the flood may cause ice caves to collapse, create unexpected movements in the glacier, or result in rock and icefalls from the face of the glacier.

“This flood event is Mother Nature showing its strength and power, and I urge everyone to respect that power by observing from a safe distance,” said Ed Grossman, Juneau Ranger District recreation manager.

The National Weather Service water level gauge at Mendenhall Lake can be monitored on the web here.

(Photo courtesy of Laurie Craig, Lead Naturalist at Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center - Craig says it's an "image of the area on the right side of the glacier where we can see churning water that is discharging from the glacier. We suspect similar discharge is occurring in the other places that are hidden beneath the glacier.")

Ferry cancellation
The MV Chenega sailings to Whittier for Thursday and Friday have been canceled due to severe weather in Prince William Sound.

The vessel will still sail Cordova-Valdez, as scheduled. Travelers may view the most current schedule information online at ferry alaska dot com .

AMHS staff is contacting affected passengers; for more information, please call your local terminal by dialing 1-907-465-3941 or toll-free at 1-800-642-0066.

Increased bear activity
Due to increased bear activity, The Alaska Department of Fish and Game would like to remind all residents to store garbage and other bear attractants in a garage, shed, or bear resistant enclosure until 4am on garbage day.

For more information about living and recreating in bear country, visit

Flood Warning-Mendenhall Lake, River
With Suicide Basin starting to leak, the National Weather Service has issued a Flood Warning for the area around Mendenhall Lake and River until 10 P. M. Saturday night.

Water levels are expected to peak Friday night.

Mendenhall Glacier's "Suicide Basin" lake started to release at approximately 6 p.m. on Wednesday, July 9th, causing water levels to rise in the Mendenhall Lake and River areas.

People should stay away from the banks of the Mendenhall River as the banks are unstable and could easily give way.

Do not stop or stand on bridges to take photographs.

Those residing near Mendenhall Lake and along the Mendenhall River should be prepared to experience high water levels and respond accordingly.

With National Weather Service Forecast Models exceeding 2011 flood levels, it is important that people be prepared for inundation in areas never previously recorded.

Recognize that even if water does not crest the banks it is possible for streets to become flooded through the storm drain system.

Local agencies are monitoring the situation and will be providing updates as available.

To view the National Weather Service hydrographs for Mendenhall Lake go to:

For the National Weather Service Mendenhall River hydrograph go to:

Glacial lake outburst prompts Juneau flood warning
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The National Weather Service is warning of fast-rising water levels on Mendenhall Lake and Mendenhall River that could leave some areas under several feet of water.

A flood warning has been issued through Saturday night due to the release of a glacially dammed lake. Water levels are expected to rise and fall quickly, assuming there is nothing like a sudden heavy rain.

Meteorologist Robert Tschantz says record levels are forecast for the lake and river.

Mendenhall Lake is forecast to reach 11.6 feet, almost 2 feet above moderate flood stage.

Mendenhall River is forecast to crest at 14.6 feet. Tschantz said View Drive, a small residential area, becomes impassable when the river hits 13 feet. He said at the level forecast, parts of area campgrounds could be several feet underwater.

Coast Guard medevacs 64-year-old woman from a ferry near Cordova, Alaska
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard medevaced an injured 64-year-old woman from Alaska Marine Highway System ferry Kennicott near Cordova Wednesday evening.

A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew, forward deployed in Cordova, safely hoisted the woman and transported her to awaiting medical personnel in Valdez.

The crew of the Kennicott requested help after the woman suffered a head injury.

Anchorage woman arrested on sex trafficking counts
Alaska State Troopers have arrested an Anchorage woman on charges she trafficked women for sex in Alaska's largest communities.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports 39-year-old Amber L. Batts was arrested Wednesday on four counts of sex trafficking. She was being held on $15,000 bail. Online court records didn't list an attorney for her on Wednesday.

Troopers allege Batts supervised an online system that marketed women for sex acts in Anchorage, Fairbanks Juneau, the Matanuska-Susitna Borough and the Kenai Peninsula.

Authorities say money was exchanged for sex acts, and they allege Batts got a cut of it. Troopers served two warrants Wednesday, one at Batts' home and the other at an apartment where sex acts are alleged to have taken place between the women and their customers.

Third sinkhole opens up on UAF campus in last week
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Another sinkhole has opened up in the ground below Fairbanks.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports several have been reported in the last week since heavy rains fell. One sinkhole on a resident's lawn was estimated to be 80 feet deep. It's been filled in with gravel.

The University of Alaska Fairbanks has reported at least three sinkholes, including the latest Thursday morning.

An employee was mowing the lawn on the east side of campus when the ground opened up under the mower's left wheel. There were no injuries, but the riding lawn mower the size of a golf cart was nearly swallowed by the 10-foot deep hole that's since been filled in.

Other sinkholes were near the West Ridge research building and another on the campus' east side.

Fairbanks man sentenced to 9 years in drug case
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A 37-year-old Fairbanks man has been sentenced to more than nine years in prison for possessing cocaine for distribution.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Benjamin Dewayne Smith was found with more than 13 ounces of cocaine in 2012.

He pleaded guilty to possession in April and was sentenced Wednesday to nine years and two months in prison.

Prosecutors say Smith had been convicted three previous times of drug felonies.

He's the former co-owner of Heavy Chevy Entertainment, also known as HCE.

Alaska lawmakers approve $500K furniture budget
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska state House-Senate committee has approved a $500,000 budget for new furniture at the Anchorage Legislative Information Office that is being remodeled.

The Anchorage Daily News reports the budget approved Monday by the Legislative Council is for new furnishings in public spaces, hearing rooms and staff offices at the downtown building.

Lawmakers will make do with old furniture from storage and state surplus when they move into the overhauled offices next year.

The council also decided to take the high bid to purchase and install visual and audio systems there. Winning the bid was Chariot Group Inc., which bid more than $343,000, compared to low bidder Pyramid Audio Video, at nearly $291,000.

Legislative Affairs Agency director Pam Varni says Chariot reached a higher score in a bid review.

State wants mediation over Xerox billing system
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The state of Alaska wants to go to mediation over what it considers the failure by Xerox State Healthcare to address problems with Alaska's new Medicaid payment system.

Xerox is the system vendor.

At a legislative hearing in February, a company executive said progress was being made in areas like claims processing. The following month, health commissioner Bill Streur sent a letter to the company's president, demanding a corrective action plan. He said health care providers had sustained thousands of dollars of losses related to non-payment, rebilling and waiting "inordinate" amounts of time to authorize a service or verify the status of claims.

Xerox, in a statement, says it's working with the state to address its concerns and to achieve the mutual goal of providing a reliable system.

State faces fine over undeclared bullets, lighter
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The state faces a fine of at least $7,000 after a lawmaker attempted to ship bullets, a cigarette lighter and an aerosol can by air to Juneau.

Wasilla Rep. Wes Keller said he plans to reimburse the state for the penalty. He called it an embarrassing mistake.

The 2013 incident was made public at a Legislative Council meeting Wednesday.

The Anchorage Daily News reports the council adopted a new policy on shipping household goods from lawmakers' home districts to Juneau for session to meet a condition set by federal authorities to reduce the initial penalty.

If there is another violation, the Legislature could be assessed the maximum fine of $75,000 and have suspended a number issued by the Transportation Security Administration to vouch for a shipper's integrity.

Micheal W. Smith performed in Juneau Wednesday
Singer/Songwriter Michael W. Smith performed a benefit concert in Juneau Wednesday afternoon. The concert,benefiting Love INC, was held at Centennial Hall, where Smith was joined by a 250-member choir.

This was not Michael W. Smith's first time in Alaska. Smith said, "This my third cruise to Alaska. I'm a big outdoorsman. I just love the state. It's beautiful." He plans to perform at the Alaska State Fair this summer.

Michael W. Smith has won 3 Grammy Awards along with his 40 Dove Awards.

Live from Juneau, its TODAY!
The TODAY show broadcasted live segments from the Mendenhall Glacier Pavilion this morning. Hundreds of fans filled two parking lots and lined the road to the visitor's center before 3 AM. Nancy Woizeschke, (Wo zeski) President and CEO of the Juneau Convention and Visitor's Bureau gave us some insight into what it took to get the NBC morning show to Juneau.

The state of Alaska and their tourism partners have been working for at least 10 years to get someone the caliber of the TODAY Show to come to Juneau. "We have been working on it for at least three months, " said Woizeschke, (Wo zeski) . "They looped us in when it looked like it was something that was going to happen. We have been working with them on logistics. We actually had one of our staff come out at three in the morning to take pictures, so they could see the available light at that time. The Forest Service has been involved in getting the permits. It's been a big chunk of our life for the last couple of months. It's exciting to see it all come together and see all these people out here as excited as we are," Woizeschke concluded.

Even though months of work went into this project. It was not a "done deal" until the last week.

Natalie Morales hosted the Juneau segments for TODAY. The broadcast featured highlights of Morales’ previously filmed adventures at Mendenhall Glacier and at Pack Creek Brown Bear Viewing Area on Admiralty Island.

Help JPD solve the Crime of the Week
On July 8th at about 5:50 in the morning, an anonymous caller reported a vehicle had crashed into three electrical boxes and a mailbox stand in the 8800 block of Nancy Street.

The Juneau Police Department is asking for the public’s assistance in locating the person responsible for the hit and run. The vehicle involved will likely be a passenger car and it will have noticeable front end damage as a light and trim were left at the scene.

The cost to repair the damage will be approximately $7300.

If you have a tip, you can call JPD at 586-0600 and remain anonymous.

You can also log on to juneau crimeline dot com.

You may be eligible for a reward.

Fairbanks to test clothing from fatal fire
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Clothing worn by a man who died in a fire at the Fairbanks downtown post office will be tested at a crime laboratory in Georgia.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Johnny Wallace was severely burned in the fire Jan. 1, 2013. He died four days later.

Fairbanks Mayor Eberhart says he found out in June that Wallace's clothing was not sent to the state crime lab.

The clothing had been doused with a chemical extinguisher and police said the state lab likely would reject testing because it would be a waste of time.

Eberhart after meetings with Wallis' family asked police to send the clothing to an independent lab.

He says the analysis may yield nothing but the city owes it to the family to get the clothing tested.

Woman dies in Seward Highway crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A woman has died of injuries suffered in a van crash Wednesday night on the Seward Highway.

KTUU-TV reports the crash was about a mile south of the turnoff to the Alyeska Highway in Girdwood.

Alaska State Troopers say the northbound van shortly after 8 p.m. crossed the southbound lane, hit a guardrail, overturned and landed in the middle of the highway.

The woman was ejected and the van landed on her. She was declared dead at the scene.

Notification of next of kin is pending and the woman's name has not been released.

A man in the van was taken to a hospital.

Several respond to disabled vessel
KODIAK, Alaska — The Coast Guard, Alaska State Troopers, local search and rescue and the crew of the tug Naniq responded to a disabled vessel near Kotzebue, Alaska, Wednesday.

The Naniq crew provided gas and a battery to the disabled vessel and escorted them back to Kotzebue.

Alaska State Troopers contacted Coast Guard 17th District command center watchstanders to request aerial assistance to help locate three women and a child aboard a disabled 24-foot aluminum Harbercraft. The mariners were traveling from Buckland to Kotzebue when the weather turned bad and they attempted to return to Buckland but had run out of gas.

A Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew launched and were conducting a search of the area when Alaska State Troopers reported the crew of the tug Naniq had located the missing boaters.

The Jayhawk helicopter crew rendezvoused with the crew of the tug and barge Naniq who reported the vessel had lost power and run out of gas.

The helicopter crew remained on scene while the Naniq crew assisted the disabled boaters.

“This case illustrates how invaluable good Samaritans and our local and state agencies are to the Coast Guard,” said Adam De Rocher, a watchstander at Coast Guard 17th District command center. “Without our partners we wouldn’t have been able to locate and provide assistance to the mariners in their time of need.”

Weather at the time of the incident was reported as 3- to 5-foot seas and 17 mph winds.

[Wednesday July 9th 2014  17TH  EDITION 6:05 P.M.]

New JDHS Assistant Principal is Kim McNamara
The Juneau School District welcomes Kimberley McNamara as Assistant Principal at Juneau-Douglas High School. McNamara was interviewed on July 2, by a panel representing the school’s certified staff and classified staff, district administration and the JDHS Site Council.

McNamara is currently Special Education Program Manager at the Department of Education and Early Development in Juneau, where she has been since 2011. She has a strong background in special education as a high school teacher of English, history and language arts in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. She also spent time as a teacher and youth counselor in a wilderness therapy environment.

McNamara says, "I am extremely excited to be joining the JDHS school community and look forward to getting to know the students, families, and staff. The applicant pool was strong and I am honored to be selected.” She is looking forward to the school year, “August is around the corner and I anticipate a successful year working with Principal Casperson and the rest of the staff at JDHS. I will work hard to serve our community in this new role."

JDHS Principal Paula Casperson shares the enthusiasm. She says, “JDHS is pleased to welcome Kim to our team. She is a high energy, solution-oriented person and is looking forward to helping JDHS continue on our positive trajectory. We are lucky to have her!”
McNamara has a Bachelor of Arts in English from University of Massachusetts Amherst, a Master of Education with a Special Education Endorsement from Keene State College in New Hampshire, and will receive her Graduate Certificate in Education Leadership from the University of Alaska Anchorage.

Yukon Quest to spread out rest periods
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — The Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race is spreading out rest periods during the race, a move officials say will ensure better rested dog teams.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the biggest change is reducing the 36-hour layover in Dawson City to 24 hours.

Mushers will now have six-hour layovers in either Braeburn or Carmacks. That used to be a four-hour layover.

A six-hour stop is now required in Eagle, an increase of two hours. A new six-hour mandatory stop has been added on the Alaska side, in either Circle, Central or at Mile 101.

All mushers must take a mandatory eight-hour rest at the last checkpoint in Two Rivers.

The 1,000-mile race alternates starts yearly between Fairbanks and Whitehorse, Yukon. Next year's race starts Feb. 7 in Whitehorse.

Board member says no vote on Sullivan endorsement
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A board member for the Arctic Slope Regional Corp. is taking issue with the organization's endorsement of Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Dan Sullivan.

Eugene Brower said members were polled on whether they supported Sullivan but a formal board vote wasn't taken. He said he was upset by a press release implying the full board supported Sullivan. He said he supports Democratic Sen. Mark Begich.

The release issued last week said members of the board had taken the "unique step" of endorsing Sullivan, a former state attorney general and Natural Resources commissioner. The release quoted board chairman Crawford Patkotak and corporation president and CEO Rex Rock Sr.

Spokesman Ty Hardt said the support for Sullivan was overwhelming. He apologized for any confusion but said the corporation stands behind its original announcement.

2 injured in Anchorage shooting
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Anchorage police say two people have been injured in a shooting in the city's Fairview neighborhood.

KTVA reports police were looking for a suspect following the shooting Wednesday afternoon near 12th Avenue and Hyder Street.

Police say two victims were hospitalized with what appears to be non-life-threatening injuries.

No other information was immediately available.

Colorado completes 1st legal pot market study
DENVER (AP) — Colorado is smoking pot by the ton, and visitors are, too. That's the conclusion from Colorado pot regulators who have issued what might be the world's first market study of legal recreational marijuana.

The study released late Wednesday afternoon concluded that total market demand for marijuana in Colorado is about 130 metric tons a year. That's about 121 metric tons for residents and almost 9 metric tons a year for visitors. These figures include medical and recreational marijuana.

The state concluded that visitors account for 44 percent of the marijuana recreational retail sales in the Denver area. In the mountains and other vacation spots, visitors to Colorado account for 90 percent of recreational dispensary traffic.

Colorado's Department of Revenue compiled the market study, the first since retail sales began in January. Sales in Washington state began Tuesday.

Atlanta firm hired to manage new Bethel pool, gym
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — The Bethel City Council has hired a Georgia firm to manage the city's new six-lane pool and exercise facility.

KYUK reports USA Pools of Atlanta has been awarded the contract to manage the pool, named Kuimarvik (KWEEM'-uh-vik).

Kuimarvik is Yup'ik Eskimo for "place to swim."

USA Pools actually finished second in the city's scoring process, but still got the contract worth about $1.2 million annually when the city couldn't get the top-scoring process to provide plans or verify its physical address.

USA Pools will send staff members to western Alaska this month to start hiring.

User fees are expected to bring in hundreds of thousands of dollars annually, and the city has $4 million from sales taxes set aside to fund operations.

Seattle hospital testing brain trauma drug
SEATTLE (AP) — Patients who arrive unconscious with a head injury at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle may be given a drug being tested to prevent bleeding in the brain, even though they are unable to give their consent.

The hospital's chief trauma doctor, Dr. Eileen Bulger, says the drug known as TXA is already approved to stop internal bleeding. She's leading the study to determine if giving the drug as early as possible helps with traumatic brain injury.

The hospital is currently doing community outreach. Enrollment in the study won't begin until it gets approval from a review panel at the University of Washington.

The Seattle Times reports that people can opt out by requesting a "NO-STUDY" bracelet (call 206-744-7724 or email

The study at Harborview and nine other trauma centers will involve about 1,000 patients, and about 100 of those are at Harborview.

all fields closed for resurfacing
Savikko Park field resurfacing begins this week.

The expected completion date is August 21, 2014.

The ball fields will not be available for public use during the project.

Three men aboard vessel taking on water near Kodiak rescued
KODIAK, Alaska – The Coast Guard and the crew of the fishing vessel Katherine assisted three men aboard a vessel taking on water in Shelikof Strait near Kodiak Wednesday.

The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Roanoke Island will escort the 67-foot fishing vessel Jeanoah to the port of Kodiak.

The Jeanoah’s master reported the vessel had struck a rock and was taking on water approximately 40 miles west of Kodiak.

A Coast Guard rescue and assistance team from the Roanoke Island and a rescue swimmer delivered dewatering pumps and boarded the vessel to conduct temporary repairs while the crew of the Katherine towed the vessel into safer waters. The escort of the Jeanoah and its crew to Kodiak is expected to take 12-15 hours.

Murkowski: Open, Fair Amendment Process Essential in Considering Sportsmen’s Package
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, Wednesday called on Senate Democratic leaders to allow for an open and fair amendment process that “We have to return to regular order. We have to have a fair and healthy debate on legislation, especially legislation that has not gone through the committee process,” Murkowski said. “A lot of hard work has gone into crafting this bipartisan package, but unfortunately that work is once again at risk of being cast aside because of political concerns.”

Murkowski, the ranking Republican on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, made her comments this morning on the Senate floor. “Sportsmen’s issues have historically been very bipartisan and non-political,” Murkowski said. “But unless we agree to an open amendment process – where we take votes instead of hiding from them – we are unlikely to make any further progress.”

Murkowski assembled the Bipartisan Sportsmen’s Act (S. 2363), with Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C. The legislation, which has 44 cosponsors, aims to protect access to public lands for sportsmen and women. A 2003 Department of the Interior report to Congress found that there were access issues on 35 million acres of public land.

Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., used a procedural tactic to bring the legislation up on the floor that bypassed the regular committee process. Murkowski said the maneuver left her Senate colleagues without the traditional opportunity to offer amendments in committee – making the floor amendment process that much more important.
“It’s important to remember that this package has not gone through the traditional path of a committee process. I feel very strongly that all of our colleagues should have an opportunity to provide their perspectives and their insights before we take a final vote on this bill,” Murkowski said.

There have so far been 46 amendments filed to the bill. Majority Leader Reid appears to believe that relevant amendments are too difficult for Democrats to vote on, Murkowski said. She urged him to reconsider that position, but Reid was so eager to take down the bill, he tried to “fill the tree” – blocking amendments – even before a vote on the motion to proceed. “I want to be clear this morning: the Republican conference is prepared to vote on all relevant amendments,” Murkowski said. “We should do our jobs as U.S. senators. We came here to represent our states and our country, but unfortunately, we are continually denied that ability here on the Senate floor.”

We have received reports of a telephone scam in Juneau today.

The callers are identifying themselves with A E L & P and asking businesses and households to meet them at Wal-Mart and/or Fred Meyer to pay their "past due" bills.

A E L & P wants to remind customers that is not how they do business.

You are encouraged to call Juneau Police if you receive such a call.

UPDATE-Pilot injured in Palmer plane crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 57-year-old pilot was flown to a Wasilla hospital following a crash Tuesday night near Palmer.

Alaska State Troopers say Russell Dunlap of Palmer was piloting an Aeronca C85 when he attempted a landing at Sky Ranch. Troopers say in a web posting the plane overshot the runway and came to rest in a wooded area off Sky Ranch Loop.

Dunlap was taken to Mat-Su Regional Hospital by a medical helicopter for treatment. Officials at the hospital didn't immediately respond to requests for a condition update Wednesday morning.

A passenger in the plane, 22-year-old Davis Dunlap of Palmer, was treated at the scene for minor injuries.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash.

Contract delay halts island helicopter service
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A contract delay has halted transportation to and from Little Diomede Island, one of Alaska's most remote communities.

KNOM reports the weekly helicopter flights were suspended because a system of federal and state subsidies expired June 30 before the yearly contract was signed.

The service is contracted with Erickson Helicopters Inc. and subsidized annually at more than $337,000. Erickson pilot Mike Kutyba says passengers pay $400 for one-way flights to or from Nome and $200 for flights to or from the village of Wales.

The state portion of the funding is distributed by Kawerak Inc., a regional nonprofit corporation established by the Bering Straits Native Association.

Kawerak official Pearl Mikulski says she expects the contract to be settled soon.

Little Diomede is 2 1/2 miles from Big Diomede Island, Russia.

More flights arriving late; complaints are rising
WASHINGTON (AP) — More flights on U.S. airlines are running late or getting canceled, and complaints are rising.

The Transportation Department said Wednesday that 76.9 percent of flights arrived on time in May, down from 79.6 percent in April and 79.4 percent in May 2013.

Hawaiian Airlines and Alaska Airlines, which get good weather on many routes, rank best. Express Jet and Envoy, which fly smaller planes for big airlines, rank last.

The government says the largest airlines canceled 1.9 percent of their U.S. flights in May, nearly double the rate in April and last May.

Four domestic flights — all on United — and one international flight were stuck on the ground longer than federal rules allow. Fliers filed 1,010 complaints with the government against U.S. airlines, up from 720 a year earlier.

State proceeding with demolitions for bridge
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — In its first major step since taking over the Knik Arm bridge crossing project, the state transportation department has ordered the demolition of two homes' properties, over the objection of community leaders.

The state purchased the two homes along with a motel to make way for the proposed span. The department plans to start taking contract bids for demolition and removal.

Residents of Anchorage's Government Hill neighborhood oppose the demolition of the homes, but not the old motel, which the community council has deemed a potential nuisance.

Community Council President Stephanie Kesler says the homes should be used as rental properties until the project receives the federal funding it would need to go forward.

But transportation department spokeswoman Shannon McCarthy told the Anchorage Daily News that's not an option.

Juneau planners OK first Southeast peony farm
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A Juneau man has received city approval for the first peony farm in southeast Alaska.

The planning commission Tuesday approved a conditional use permit for Brad Fluetsch.

He intends to grow peonies on 24 acres he's purchased on North Douglas, bringing 15 to 20 new jobs to Juneau.

Peonies grow later in Alaska than anywhere else in the United States, providing the state an advantage in the Lower 48 wedding business for July. Lower 48 peonies bloom in early May.

Peony farms are flourishing across Alaska, and it's the fastest growing sector of Alaska agriculture.

Fluetsch says each bloom can sell for as much as $10, meaning one acre can produce about $200,000 in blossoms.

He anticipates the first crop in 2019.

US Senate debate on social issues planned
UNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A U.S. Senate debate focused on social issues is scheduled for next month between the major Republican candidates.

The Alaska Family Council says the Aug. 4 debate will be held at a church in Eagle River.

The major Republican candidates in the race are Joe Miller, former state Natural Resources Commissioner Dan Sullivan and Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell. The president of Alaska Family Action, in an email announcement Wednesday, said all three are expected to attend.

They are vying for the seat currently held by Democratic Sen. Mark Begich, who is seeking re-election.

Fairbanks homeowner fills 8-story sinkhole
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Geophysicists don't know what caused a sinkhole measuring about 80 feet deep to appear in a Fairbanks resident's yard last week.

And they might never know. Homeowner Al Schultz had safety concerns about the hole, which measure about 4 feet wide and up to eight stories deep so he had it filled Monday with five truckloads of gravel.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports that happened before two university geophysicists arrived.

Matthew Sturm, with the University of Alaska Fairbanks' Geophysical Institute, did watch a shaky video of the hole produced by the newspaper. From that, Sturm says the hole didn't appear to be man-made, discounting a theory that it was an abandoned mining shaft.

Instead, he thinks it was a fissure created by ice which has melted away

CBJ meeting changes start time
The CBJ has re-scheduled the start time for the Human Resources Committee to interview applicants for the Docks and Harbors and Airport Boards on Thursday, July 10th.

The meeting start time has changed from 5:30 pm to 5:45 pm and will be held in City Hall Conference room #224.

Man pleads not guilty to arson, murder counts
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — An 18-year-old man has pleaded not guilty to arson and murder charges in connection with a fatal fire in Fairbanks.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Conar Lee Groppel entered his plea Tuesday in Fairbanks Superior Court.

He was indicted by a grand jury for intentionally starting a fire or explosion in late January at an apartment complex on Geraghty Street. The fire killed two people, 50-year-old Jane Connolly and 39-year-old Kristina Pence. It also displaced another 50 residents.

Groppel also was injured in the fire, and spent time at a Seattle burn hospital.

Judge Bethany Harbison determined he met the financial requirements for a court-appointed attorney. An attorney in court for another case helped him enter his not guilty plea.

Trial was scheduled for late September.

City of Kotzebue bar
State alcohol regulators have given Kotzebue permission to open a city-owned bar.

The Anchorage Daily News reports that the Alcoholic Beverage Control board
voted unanimously to approve Kotzebue's request at a meeting in Fairbanks Tuesday.

Kotzebue's 20-year ban on liquor sales ended three years ago when the city opened
a liquor store. Local voters also approved a plan for a city-owned restaurant that would
also serve alcohol.

The goal was to halt bootlegging and illegal liquor sales, as well as raise revenue
for the local government.

With the approval of the A-B-C board, the bar & grill is scheduled to open as early as November.

Push continues for convention of states
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A group pushing for a convention of the states to amend the U.S. Constitution hopes to have resolutions before at least 24 state legislatures next year.

Jordan Sillars is a spokesman for the Convention of the States Project. He says three states have passed resolutions calling for a constitutional convention: Alaska, Florida and Georgia.

They call for proposed constitutional amendments that would impose fiscal restraints on the federal government, limit the government's power and jurisdiction and impose term limits.

Two-thirds of states, or 34, would have to pass such measures.

Supporters see it as a way to push back on a federal government they see as out of control. Critics have questioned the issues singled out for consideration and worry such a convention would devolve into chaos.

[Tuesday July 8th 2014  12th  EDITION 5:47 P.M.]

Vehicle takes out both electrical and mail boxes
Juneau Police say an unknown vehicle struck 3 electrical boxes on Nancy St. causing approximately $7000 in damage.

Also damaged early Tuesday morning just before 6:00, was a jointly owned mailbox stand and mailboxes, with damage estimated around $350.

Tips can be reported anonymously at

Blue Lake Expansion Project's last public tour.
The public is invited to view the construction progress at the Blue Lake dam on a bus tour to both the dam site and new powerhouse.

The last public tour will be held Sunday July 13 from 1:00 to 4:00 PM, beginning and ending at the Centennial building, Sitka.

To sign up please go to

State announces new absentee voting sites
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The number of absentee voting locations is expected to more than double over 2012 for this year's elections.

Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell's office says at least 123 new locations are being added. The deadline for new sites to be approved was the close of business Tuesday.

Treadwell, in a release, said the new locations, along with a new online system for returning ballots, should make ballots for this year's elections "the most widely available in state history."

The Division of Elections, which Treadwell oversees, worked with ANCSA Regional Association and the Alaska Federation of Natives in securing the new sites.

The division plans to post a list of the absentee locations on its website.

Troopers seek help in hit-and-run case
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers are seeking the public's help in a hit-and-run case in Kodiak last week.

Troopers say a driver struck 14-year-old girl on her bicycle on July 3 and left without
stopping or seeing if she needed help. The girl was treated at a Kodiak hospital.

KTUU reports that troopers are requesting help in identifying the driver and vehicle.

The vehicle involved was described as a maroon Ford pickup with an aluminum tool box in the bed. Troopers say the truck also had a "KVOK Crab Festival" sticker on the back.

State building gets $7.6M face lift in Nome
NOME, Alaska (AP) — A remodeling project for the state building in Nome should be completed in April 2015.

KNOM reports the building on Front Street has been gutted ahead of the remodel project.

Andy Mills with the state Department of Administration said it made more sense to fortify the existing building than completely rebuilding it.

While work continues on the $7.65 million remodeling project, offices for state agencies like Fish and Game, Law, Corrections and Health and Health and Social Services have been temporarily relocated.

Seattle prosecutor among those buying legal pot
SEATTLE (AP) — Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes was among those buying marijuana on the first day it was legal in Washington state to purchase pot for recreational use.

Holmes was a main backer of the state's recreational marijuana law and said he wanted to be one of the first customers to demonstrate there are alternatives to the nation's failed drug war.

Dressed in a pinstripe suit, Holmes stood inside Seattle's first and, for now, only licensed pot shop, Cannabis City, south of downtown on Tuesday.

He spent $80 on 4 grams, including $20.57 in taxes.

Holmes noted it had been quite some time since he smoked pot.

WA pot sales, "war over"
(ABC NEWS) - People can now purchase pot without a doctor's note in the state of Washington. It was opening day for 24 stores around the state Tuesday.

James Lathrop, the owner of Cannabis City, got the crowd going and applauding, declaring an end to the war on marijuana. "I declare this war over! Yay!!!!"

One man spoke to a reporter outside Cannabis City in Seattle, "This is a wonderful day, it is a day that allows Washington State to sell recreational cannabis legally. And I'm just excited to be able to participate in the system."

The state says only 24 stores were ready to receive licenses in time for the opening day. Washington and Colorado are the only US states that have legalized recreational pot sales.

Independence Day Weekend Enforcement Round Up
The Alaska State Troopers, Alaska Wildlife Troopers and Bureau of Highway Patrol Traffic Teams kept busy this past holiday weekend watching the roads and meeting motorists statewide.

From Wednesday July 2 at 12:01 AM through Monday July 7 at 8:00 AM, troopers were conducting a focused enforcement effort aimed at getting motorists to follow the rules of the road and took the following actions on the roadways statewide:
? 23 misdemeanor DUI arrests, 1 felony DUI Arrests
? 28 drivers charged with driving with a suspended or revoked license
? 195 additional drivers contacted who were reported as REDDI reports and ultimately determined not to be DUI
? 24 damage only crashes 3 injury crashes and 1 fatal crash were investigated by troopers
? Of the 1524 citations issued, 847 were issued for speeding and 102 were issued for seatbelt or other occupant restraint violations

“For the Kenai Peninsula we had a huge increase of motorists on our roads driving to and from events and campgrounds,” said Alaska State Trooper Captain Andrew Greenstreet of E Detachment. “While we had a lot of contact with motorists, we are fortunate that there were no fatal traffic collisions on the Kenai Peninsula during the enforcement effort. Summer time, in general, draws big crowds down to the Peninsula as the camping and fishing are incredible. We really urge drivers to continue to be mindful of their safety and to be well rested and take breaks while they are driving to avoid any type of fatigue.”

Please remember that regardless of what your ultimate plans for any celebration, Troopers encourage you to always practice safe driving behaviors when getting behind the wheel or handlebars. The first step is by clicking your seat belt or wearing a helmet or life jacket when applicable. And as always, Troopers also encourage everyone to Report Every Dangerous Driver Immediately by calling 9-1-1.

Funding for the focused highway enforcement was provided in part by grant sources distributed through the Alaska Highway Safety Office.

Coast Guard mulls closing Kodiak golf course
KODIAK, Alaska (AP) — Losses over the last three years may lead the U.S. Coast Guard to close a golf course in Kodiak.

The Kodiak Daily Mirror reports the Coast Guard expects to make a final decision on the fate of the nine-hole Bear Valley Golf Course after this season.

The course opened in 1986 and is part of the guard's recreation program. It's supposed to be self-sustaining and have Coast Guard members and dependents as majority users.

But besides losing money since 2010, customer logs show that 60 percent of users aren't connected to the Coast Guard.

Officials with Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage this year closed Eagle Glen Golf Course because of losses of more than $2 million since 2009 and a 37 percent decrease in players since 2004.

Update: Alaska man gets 4 life terms in Coast Guard deaths
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 63-year-old Kodiak man has been sentenced to four consecutive life terms after being convicted in the shooting deaths of two co-workers at a Coast Guard communications station on Kodiak Island.

James Wells was sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Anchorage.

Wells was found guilty in April by a federal jury in the 2012 deaths of Coast Guardsmen Petty Officer 1st Class James Hopkins and retired Chief Petty Officer Richard Belisle.

Wells spoke during his sentencing. He said a tragedy occurred, for which everyone has suffered. But he added: "I know I'm innocent of this crime."

Both widows of the victims also spoke, saying they hoped Wells "rots in hell."

Parnell won't study pot measure ahead of vote
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Gov. Sean Parnell says he won't use state resources to study the implications of legalizing marijuana unless voters approve a pot initiative this fall.

Parnell says he would work to implement the initiative if it passes in November, but says he personally opposes the measure, which would legalize recreational use of marijuana by those 21 years of age or older.

He tells the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner it doesn't send the right message to kids.

Voters in Colorado and Washington approved similar measures in 2012.

Parnell says Alaska will have the benefit of learning from what happened there. But he says he won't ask state employees to prepare for possible legalization in the months leading to the vote. He says the Department of Law should focus on its existing workload.

Voluntary evacuation order in place for Butte
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A voluntary evacuation is in place for those living along a two-mile stretch of the Old Glenn Highway in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough.

KTVA reports the alert is for residents of Butte (BYOOT) who live from Mile 13-15.

Officials say high water on the Matanuska River could breach a dike. The Butte Fire Department went door-to-door Monday night informing residents of the voluntary evacuation.

A shelter has been established at the old Palmer Senior Center. The American Red Cross says it will remain open until the need passes.

Pets are allowed in the lower level of the building.

NTSB find mis-rigged control on plane that crashed
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Federal investigators have found that elevator cables on a plane that crashed in Anchorage last week, killing the pilot, weren't connected correctly.

A preliminary report on the crash says the 1947 Piper PA-12's elevator controls were reversed, meaning the plane would dive if ordered to pull up and vice versa. This finding matched witness accounts that said the plane made a steep climb before pivoting to a nose-down position before hitting the ground July 2.

KTUU reports the preliminary report of the National Transportation Safety Board investigation into the Merrill Field crash that killed 61-year-old Charles Hancock of Anchorage was released late Monday.

Huge halibut no record
A halibut caught in the upper panhandle may be the largest ever caught in the Pacific, but it doesn't count as a record due to a technicality.

The Alaska dispatch reports that the monster fish was hauled aboard a charter boat out of Gustavus last Thursday.
Seventy-seven year-old Jack McGuire of California got credit for landing the 482-pound fish. However, that doesn't bump the official world record for the Pacific, a 459-pound halibut caught in Dutch Harbor in 1996.

That's because it took a gunshot and a harpoon to bring the fish into the small charter boat -- but the International Game Fish Association, which maintains the record book, only allows nets or hooks.

Five-hundred pounders have also been caught in the Atlantic and in the Bering Sea by Longliners.

Commission to hear Mallott travel issue
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A draft advisory opinion says Democratic gubernatorial candidate Byron Mallott (muh-LOT) cannot accept use of a volunteer's personal plane without paying a commercially reasonable rate.

Mallott's campaign asked the Alaska Public Offices Commission whether an individual who is a private pilot and owns a plane can volunteer his time and airplane to the campaign.

In a draft opinion, the commission's campaign disclosure coordinator says the pilot can volunteer all the time he wants. But he cannot exceed the $500 annual individual contribution limit, which includes the non-monetary value of air travel time.

The draft says regulations call for travel-related non-monetary contributions to be valued at a commercially reasonable rate.

The draft is subject to approval of the commission, which is scheduled to consider the matter next week.

Boat crew member dies after falling overboard
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a 53-year-old man has died after falling overboard a commercial fishing vessel near King Cove.

Troopers were notified Sunday by the Coast Guard about the death of Rudy Paul Duskin Jr. of King Cove.

Troopers say Duskin was on the vessel with the skipper, 48-year-old Raymond Koso Jr., when a large swell struck the vessel as the anchor was being retrieved.

Duskin was thrown into the water. Troopers say Koso radioed a distress call as he tried to rescue Duskin, eventually reaching him.

Koso put on a survival suit, entered the water and pulled Duskin to shore, where he was joined by crew members of a responding vessel.

Resuscitation efforts failed. Duskin was pronounced dead.

The body was being sent to the state medical examiner's office.

Sentencing set for AK man in Coast Guard killings
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Sentencing is scheduled Tuesday for a 63-year-old man convicted of murder in the shooting deaths of two co-workers at a Coast Guard communications station on Alaska's Kodiak Island.

James Wells was convicted in April by a federal jury in the 2012 deaths of Coast Guardsmen Petty Officer 1st Class James Hopkins and retired Chief Petty Officer Richard Belisle (BEHL'-eye-ul).

Federal prosecutors are seeking consecutive life sentences for Wells, a civilian.

Prosecutors alleged Wells was unhappy that he was increasingly irrelevant on the job through the advancement of the victims.

Wells was found guilty of six felony charges: two counts each of first-degree murder, murder of a U.S. officer and use of a firearm in a violent crime.

Federal prosecutors said earlier they would not seek the death penalty against Wells.

[Monday July 7th 2014  14TH EDITION 5:05 P.M.]

WA pot sales, best in the world
(ABC NEWS) - Adults in Washington State will be able to buy pot for any old reason Tuesday, when it becomes only the second US state to legalize the sale of recreational marijuana.

24 retail licenses have been issued so far but there are more than 330 stores that could get licenses. Brian Smith with the Washington State Liquor Control Board isn't humble about the set-up.  "Nowhere in the world is there a comprehensive system of growing, processing and retailing marijuana as there is in Washington State."

UPDATE: Jogger says she was attacked by bear
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A jogger who came upon two bear cubs on a trail south of Anchorage says she was attacked by the mother bear.

Alaska State Troopers say 59-year-old Susanne Knudsen of Indian was taken to an Anchorage hospital for treatment of injuries that are not considered life threatening.

Knudsen told troopers she was jogging on a trail in Chugach State Park when two brown bear cubs came out of the brush in front of her. She said she was hit from behind by the sow.

She used her cell phone to call for help Monday morning.

Troopers said a group of all-terrain vehicle riders, in the parking lot when the trooper arrived, lent the responding trooper an ATV and the riders helped bring Knudsen down the trail.

Juneau Jumpers to compete in Hong Kong
5 members of The Juneau Jumpers will represent the USA at the world competitions in Hong Kong this month. Coach Karen Ross says the jumpers have been training almost daily to be in perfect condition for their routines.

They won the slot by competing in February in North Carolina and are part of the group of 45 - 55 jumpers from the United States. The Juneau Jumpers leave for Hong Kong on July 25th.

There were 6 Jumpers chosen but as Coach Ross explained, they're down to 5. Dunya Hermann needs surgery for her injured foot and will not be able to go. That leaves Kelley Olson, Mikayla May, Martina Worden, Tori Ross, and Connor Ulmer to compete.

Watch for opportunities around town to help support the Juneau Jumpers fundraising for their trip to compete in Hong Kong.

This picture was taken at the USA trials in Raleigh, NC in February.

L to R: Kelley Olson, Mikayla May, Dunya Hermann, Martina Worden, Tori Ross, Connor Ulmer.

Sacramento man sentenced to prison for Alaska drug conspiracy
United States Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced Monday, that John Joseph Brennan III, of Sacramento, California was sentenced in federal court in Anchorage for his role in a drug conspiracy to distribute and to possess with the intent to distribute oxycodone.

Brennan, 61, was sentenced to 68 months imprisonment and 3 years of supervised release for his role in the drug conspiracy involving the distribution of oxycodone in Fairbanks and Juneau between the dates of September 2008 to September 2010.

According to information presented to the court, the defendant was a member of a large scale drug conspiracy where oxycodone was delivered to Fairbanks and Juneau, supplied by the defendant and others who were located in Sacramento through commercial package delivery services and drug couriers flying on commercial flights. Members of the conspiracy laundered the drug proceeds using bank transactions and wire transfers.

Body found near Bethel identified
BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — Authorities have identified a body recently found near Bethel as Preston Rory Michaels.

KYUK reports Bethel police were notified of the identity by the state medical examiner's office.

The body was found late last month on a beach on an island near a fish camp across from the southwest Alaska town, which is located at the mouth of the Kuskokwim River.

Michaels had been missing since December. His disappearance spurred a search on the Kuskokwim River where he was living in a cabin.

A cause of death has not yet been determined.

According to authorities, there were no signs of foul play.

Russian arrested in hacking case filed in Seattle
SEATTLE (AP) — The U.S. Secret Service has arrested a Russian man who is accused of hacking store computers to steal thousands of credit card numbers.

The agency isn't say where the 30-year-old Moscow man, Roman Valerevich Seleznev, was arrested Saturday, but he was transported to Guam for an initial court appearance and detained for a July 22 hearing.

The U.S. attorney's office in Seattle says an indictment unsealed Monday charges him with bank fraud, obtaining information from a protected computer, possessing stolen credit cards and identity theft.

Investigators say he installed malicious software to steal credit numbers, using computer servers all over the world.

U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan in Seattle says the arrest shows cybercrooks can't hide behind distant keyboards.

Seleznev also is charged in a similar but separate indictment in Nevada.

Troopers respond to reported bear mauling
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers have responded to a reported bear mauling on a hiking trail south of Anchorage.

Few details were immediately available. Spokeswoman Megan Peters said by email that she was waiting to speak with the responding trooper.

Peters said troopers received a report of a mauling around 10:20 a.m. Monday. She said the incident occurred on Penguin Ridge Trail in the Bird Creek area, which is in Chugach State Park.

Knitted artwork decorating Sitka vandalized
SITKA, Alaska (AP) — Vandals have destroyed knitted decorations on Sitka public signposts that were put up by a local woman.

The Daily Sitka Sentinel says Fran Hartman discovered that at least six of the 16 signposts decorations she put up on Lincoln Street in recent weeks were in tatters.

The vandalism occurred overnight last Wednesday. Hartman made the discovery the following day.

Hartman says she spent hundreds of hours and her own money on her personal beautification project.

One of her creations was to add knitted eyeballs to fish-shaped bicycle racks.

Hartman had planned to add more of the knitted decorations, but said soon after the vandalism that she's now having second thoughts.

Early in Hartman's yarn-bombing project, someone stole a stop-sign wrapping that featured three crocheted skulls framed in red.

Police say man a suspect in parade incident
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Juneau police say a man arrested last week for threatening a woman is a suspect in a racial incident that occurred during the Alaska Native gathering known as Celebration.

Alexander Logan Libbrecht is being held on $25,000 bail on charges of fourth-degree assault. Police Lt. Kris Sell said Libbrecht yelled racist slurs and threatened a black woman.

Sell said the behavior is similar to that which marred a parade at last month's Celebration.

Court records did not list an attorney for Libbrecht.

Libbrecht also is wanted in Hawaii for threatening people and that the Secret Service asked Juneau police for help in contacting Libbrecht regarding threats he allegedly made against the president and an attorney in New Jersey.

Man found dead at bottom of cliff near Seward
SEWARD, Alaska (AP) — A 29-year-old man suspected of eluding Alaska State Troopers has been found dead at the bottom of a cliff near Seward.

Troopers say a trooper tried to conduct a traffic stop on a mini four-wheeler Saturday night, but the vehicle continued down the road.

Other troopers responded and the four-wheeler was found abandoned.

Troopers say that shortly before 11:30 p.m. Sunday, campers in the Stoney Creek RV park called Soldotna troopers to report that someone matching the description of the suspect was walking down a hill near the RV park.

Troopers and a police dog searched the area. Troopers say Patrick Wallace of Houston, Alaska, was found dead at the bottom of a 100-foot cliff.

An autopsy was planned by the state medical examiner.

Warming's impact on wolverines cast into doubt
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — A top federal wildlife official says there's too much uncertainty about climate change to prove it threatens the snow-loving wolverine — overruling agency scientists who warned of impending habitat loss.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Regional Director Noreen Walsh said there's no doubt that the wolverine's high-mountain habitat is getting warmer.

But she said any assumptions about how that will change snowfall patterns are based on "speculation."

Her comments were contained in a May 30 memo obtained by the Center for Biological Diversity. Fish and Wildlife Service spokesman Chris Tollefson confirmed the memo was from Walsh.

Federal biologists last year proposed Endangered Species Act protections for an estimated 250-300 wolverines in the Lower 48 states. Larger populations persist in Alaska and Canada.

A final decision is due in early August.

Woman dies of injuries suffered in ATV crash
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A Wasilla woman has died of injuries suffered in a crash of an all-terrain vehicle.

KTUU-TV reports 23-year-old Shelby Caven was injured Friday on the Kenai Peninsula and died a day later at Providence Hospital in Anchorage.

Alaska State Troopers say they took a call on the crash at Whiskey Gulch beach at 6:21 p.m. Friday.

Witnesses say Caven was returning to the beach and tried to cross the mouth of Stariski Creek. The ATV struck the creek bottom and flipped forward.

Craven was able to stand but collapsed. A passenger also was injured.

Other ATV riders took Craven to the Sterling Highway and emergency responders rushed her to South Peninsula Hospital in Homer.

She was later flown to Providence and pronounced dead at 3:26 a.m. Saturday.

Boy pulled from creek waters dies of injuries
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A 5-year-old boy pulled last week from Glacier Creek near Girdwood has died.

KTUU-TV reports the child died Sunday morning.

The boy disappeared Friday as his mother helped another child into a car seat.

The mother called emergency dispatchers and a search was launched by Girdwood emergency responders.

The boy was spotted from the air in the water on mudflats at the creek's runoff.

He was flown to Providence Hospital in critical condition.

Suicide Basin sensor replaced
The flood gauge at Suicide Basin malfunctioned either late Friday night or early Saturday morning causing a false alarm of a flood potential.

A helicopter was summoned and the sensor was replaced and re calibrated Saturday afternoon according to Pete Boyd of the National Weather Service.

The basin is still filling. When it gives way, the water is expected to release under the glacier into Mendenhall Lake and River.

Soboleff wins board seat
Although only one of the Sealaska 4 won a board seat in Seattle on June 28, Carlton Smith knew the odds were stacked against the slate he was on in the election for the Sealaska Board.

 Four seats were to be filled and going into the final round of balloting Saturday, June 28, Smith says he knew his slate could only elect one of the four: Ross Soboleff.

During the reorganization of the board that followed the annual meeting, Soboleff joined a coalition of directors that resulted in a new majority on the Sealaska Board. Joe Nelson of Yakutat was elected board chairman and Jackie Johnson Pata was elected vice chairman. “This is the beginning of a new Sealaska,” Smith says. “Now the challenge is to continue the process of renewing the board with directors like Ross who can add real-world business experience to the board’s perspective.”

Smith says that the campaign was a learning experience. “One of our goals was to improve communications with shareholders. For us candidates, this campaign was proof that shareholders want Sealaska to hear and understand their views.”

According to both Wanamaker and Smith, the group is looking forward to 2015. “With what we learned in this campaign,” Smith says, “we are confident we can elect at least two new Sealaska Board members next year. We are ready and committed to continue our campaign.”

The slate, known as the Sealaska4, included Smith, Soboleff, Karen Taug, and Margaret Nelson.

Woman charged in crash that caused outage
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A 46-year-old woman has been charged with driving under the influence in the weekend crash that knocked out power to downtown Fairbanks.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Tina L. Bolt is also charged with leaving the scene of an accident and driving with a revoked license.

Fairbanks police say Bolt on Saturday night tried driving a sport utility vehicle east on Second Avenue and hit multiple signs and parked cars, including one in which a man and woman were sitting.

Police say the man confronted Bolt and told her to stay but she fled.

Police say Bolt sideswiped another car, crashed through barricades in a construction area and smashed into a power pole.

The pole fell on the SUV and power was interrupted for about a half hour.

July 6th 2014  4th  EDITION 6:51 P.M.]

Public meeting on Admiralty National Monument
The Tongass National Forest invites you to attend public meetings and submit comments on managing outfitters and guides on the Admiralty National Monument, Hoonah, Juneau, and Sitka Ranger Districts.

The Sitka meeting is Tuesday, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Harrigan Centennial Hall Exhibits Room, at 330 Harbor Drive, Sitka. The Angoon meeting is Wednesday, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Angoon Community Association office at 315 Heendae Road, Angoon.

“The Shoreline II project area includes all areas used by non-motorized outfitter and guide activities that originate from the marine shoreline areas,” said Shoreline II Team Leader Jay Kinsman. “A decision on this project will set use levels and provide a framework for managing outfitters and guides on the four districts. At these meetings, you will be able to get information, ask questions, and provide written comments on the Shoreline II project.”

Herring return in significant numbers to Auke Bay
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Pacific herring are returning to Auke Bay to spawn in the most significant numbers seen in decades.

Whether the fishery is becoming healthier won't be seen until scientists see if the eggs are fertilized and if they survive.

Lynn Canal herring stocks have been depressed for decades. For the past seven years until recently, first Lynn Canal and then Southeast herring stocks were under consideration for listing as an endangered species, but neither population was deemed distinct enough for the listing.

The herring fishery closed in Lynn Canal and around Juneau in 1982.

Marine ecologist Michelle Ridgway says she has seen more female herring this summer, but is still looking for males. Other challenges for the fishery include water quality and temperature.

Vehicle hits pole, knocks power out in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Fairbanks police say a vehicle hit a utility pole Saturday night in downtown Fairbanks, knocking out power in the area.

The News-Miner reports the vehicle reportedly struck several other vehicles before crashing through barricades and running into the power pole.

Police say the vehicle's driver and passenger were transported to Fairbanks Memorial Hospital for medical care.

WA Pot Sales-Will Be In Stock
Washington State's about to become the second state after Colorado to legalize the sale of recreational marijuana. It happens Tuesday. The first retail licenses are being issued Monday morning - and dealers are getting ready to open for business.

ABC's Rich Petschke in Seattle reports: Tom Beckley owns Top Shelf Cannabis in Bellingham, Washington. He says he hopes to be at the top of the license issuance list. ""You get your license on Monday, well, you get your product in here, it has to sit for 24 hours. So if we get the license at 9 in the morning, we can open at 9 o'clock the next day or something, you know? But if it's in the afternoon, I guess we can be open for the late shift." Beckley says he already has deals signed with a marijuana distributor and confirms he will have pot in stock for the grand opening."

Man dragged by boat trailer
The Soldotna Public Safety Communication Center received a report of a serious injury accident at the Deep Creek boat launch in Ninilchik, Saturday morning just after 7 AM.

56 year old Kenneth Kataiva of Sterling was at the boat launch for his turn to launch and was removing the straps on his boat. A Ford van, towing a large charter boat behind him, pulled out around his vehicle and boat and struck him. Kataiva was dragged by the boat trailer a short distance and sustained a serious injury to his leg. He was flown to Anchorage by helicopter for treatment.

The van was driven by 30 year old Julian Hendricks of Ninilchik, who worked for a charter operation in Ninilchik. Hendricks reported the van lost its brakes as he was waiting in line so he was trying to avoid striking Kataiva's vehicle in front of him.

[Saturday July 5th 2014  9th  EDITION 7:14 P.M.]

Senator Begich makes visit to Juneau Radio Center
Alaska U S Senator Mark Begich stopped by Juneau Radio Center last week and talked about the pending new Trans Canada liquefied natural gas deal.

Sen. Begich began, "The governor announced last week that they have agreed to make an agreement to make some plans. It's frustrating! Here we are with an incredible resource of liquefied natural gas to ship to the Asian markets. Louisiana has cut a deal with South Korea; to ship liquefied natural gas from Louisiana to South Korea. They shipped to a partner that we should have shipped to . We ship to Japan.
But because we have been 'twiddling our thumbs '. The governor, the folks who have been working on this issue they have multiple plans; a bullet line, a big line, trucking. Pick something. Do something. "

"First priority, gas to Alaska, second, make sure we can export. We are losing our markets, because we have been 'dilly dallying' too long," he warned.

The Senator continued, "I hope this deal is real; I hope it produces. I don't see dirt turning, I don't see a pipeline being constructed, I don't hear steel orders being made. What I do hear is Louisiana shipping natural gas to South Korea. We are here, we have the product. They got the price we should have gotten. "

"I am hopeful. I am worried that our office that deals with the pipeline business is at risk, because the state has taken so long", Begich lamented.

Begich is certain of the President's backing on this project, "One thing is clear, we have the Obama Administration's agreement as soon as line is designed they have agreed to help us cut through the "red tape" The federal government is ready. They see this a national priority, but the state has to make a decision."

He concluded, "It's great to have plans; let's turn some dirt."

(Pictured:  Senator Mark Begich and News of the North News Director, Lynn Campbell at Juneau Radio Center)

Healy man gets jail time in mistaken identity case
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — A Healy man will serve one year in jail for beating another man with a baseball bat in an apparent case of mistaken identity.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports Joshua R. Sanford must also pay his victim's medical bills.

The 28-year-old Sanford pleaded guilty to third-degree felony assault as part of a plea agreement. Sanford was arrested last October after the beating.

According to court documents, the victim had fallen asleep at a friend's house, waking up to the sound of a revving vehicle. He was hit on the head when he went outside.

A witness told authorities Sanford then apologized to the victim that he was not who he thought he was.

Attorneys on both sides said Sanford had legitimate motivation for attempting to beat his real target.

Rain, lack of sun a problem for Fairbanks growers
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Fairbanks area farmers say extensive rains and a lack of heat and sunshine have made for one of the worst growing seasons.

Farmers say record rainfalls over the past two weeks have saturated crops and stunted plant growth. More than 6 1/2 inches of rain has fallen in Fairbanks since June 18.

The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports farmers are also complaining of flooded fields that make it difficult to use machinery.

Warm-weather crops such as zucchini, squash, tomatoes, cucumbers and green beans have been especially affected.

On the upside, farmers said crops that like wet weather — such as bok choy, spinach, Swiss chard and lettuce — are thriving.

And things could soon turn around: the forecast for this weekend shows temperatures in the high 70s and low 80s.

Fairbanks authorities seek info on moose killing
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Authorities in Fairbanks are seeking information about a moose killing.

Alaska Wildlife Troopers say a moose was found shot and left to rot in the backyard of a North Pole resident.

The troopers say the moose was likely shot with a rifle in the vicinity of the Christine Drive, Repp Road and Brock Road area within the past couple days.

In Fairbanks, The Daily News-Miner reports the moose carcass was discovered on Thursday.

Boy, 5, critical after falling in water
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Alaska State Troopers say a 5-year-old boy is in critical condition Saturday after he apparently slipped in the water near Girdwood and was carried downstream.

KTUU reports that the boy went missing Friday afternoon while he was playing near Glacier Creek where it crosses under Seward Highway. His mother told troopers she went to put another child in the car and turned to find the boy gone.

Emergency crews from several agencies searched for the boy and found him in the water on mudflats at the creek's runoff.

A portion of Seward Highway near Girdwood was shut down briefly Friday so the child could be airlifted out of the area.

Troopers say the boy was taken to Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage with life threatening injuries.

Man stabs Anchorage police dog during chase
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — An Anchorage police dog is expected to survive after he was stabbed by a suspect during a chase early Saturday.

Police arrested 37-year-old Nole Hommerding, and booked him into jail on charges of harming a police dog, assault, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.

The attack on the dog came after police responded to a fight between two men in the Mountain View neighborhood. Police say Hommerding had a machete. When officers ordered him to drop the machete, he ran.

The officer and the K9 dog named MP pursued him.

Police say the dog bit onto Hommerding to apprehend him, and that's when the man stabbed the animal. Officers subdued the suspect with a Taser.

One officer suffered minor injuries. The dog underwent surgery for three stab wounds.

Cost Guard responds to capsized vessel in Port Valdez, Alaska
VALDEZ, Alaska – The Coast Guard responded to a 45-foot fishing vessel capsized in Port Valdez, Friday.

At approximately 6:15 p.m. Friday, Coast Guard Sector Anchorage received a report that the seine fishing vessel Elohim capsized while transiting Port Valdez with four adults aboard. The fishing vessel Infinite Grace recovered all four crew members and delivered them to the Valdez Small Boat Harbor. No injuries were reported.

The Infinite Grace towed Elohim to the Mineral Creek mooring buoy in Port Valdez late Friday night to await salvage. No pollution related to the incident has been reported, however the Elohim’s owner deployed boom around the vessel as a precautionary measure. The vessel has a fuel capacity of approximately 900 gallons. It was reported the vessel had approximately 500 pounds of salmon on board.

As of Saturday morning, Elohim’s owner contracted Alaska Marine Response, LLC, out of Cordova to assist with salvage of the vessel. Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Valdez is coordinating with the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation and other state and federal agencies to oversee salvage of the vessel and ensure the safety and protection of the marine environment.

Elohim is homeported in Homer, Alaska. The cause of the incident is currently under investigation.

UPDATE:Coast Guard: capsized vessel in Alaska, 4 rescued
VALDEZ, Alaska (AP) — The Coast Guard says a 45-foot fishing vessel capsized in Alaska's Port Valdez and all four crewmembers have been rescued with no injuries.

Authorities say the seine fishing vessel Elohim capsized Friday evening while transiting Port Valdez. The cause of the incident remains under investigation. Elohim is homeported in Homer, Alaska.

The Coast Guard says another fishing vessel, Infinite Grace, recovered the four crewmembers. Infinite Grace also towed the capsized vessel to the mooring buoy in Port Valdez. No pollution related to the incident has been reported.

The Coast Guard says the capsized Elohim had approximately 500 pounds of salmon on board.

Local, state and federal agencies are overseeing salvage of the vessel to ensure safety and protection of the marine environment.

Valdez is one of Alaska's most important ports.

Flooding threat tips to southeast Alaska
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) — Nervous Fairbanks residents watched the heaviest rain in more than 40 years send rivers rising, but new flood threats emerged in southeast Alaska.

The Skagway Police Department issued a moderate flood warning for the Taiya River, and says the river crested Saturday at 18 feet. The National Park Service closed Chilkoot Trail for 24 hours and area campgrounds were expected to be affected.

In Fairbanks, The Daily News-Miner reports Goldstream Creek flooded late Thursday night, rising from a trickle to six feet in 24 hours.

The 6.62 inches of rain that fell between June 18 and July 2 was the wettest 15-day period on record in Fairbanks, breaking the old record of 6.17 inches set in August 1967.