Friday, January 10, 2003

Anchorage police investigate home invasion robbery
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Anchorage police are looking for two men who invaded a home Thursday morning.

Snowmachine deaths down due to lack of snow
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Lack of snow around much of the state has meant fewer snowmachine fatalities in Alaska this winter.

Alaska Railroad to straighten track
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Alaska Railroad plans about $77 million in capital improvements this year, with some of the biggest projects slated for development in and around Anchorage.

Former Fairbanks woman nominated for Grammy
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Fairbanks' homegrown opera star, Vivica Genaux, has been nominated for a Grammy Award.

Norton renews federal right of way for TAPS
JUNEAU (AP) -- Interior Secretary Gale Norton renewed a right-of-way grant to the trans-Alaska oil pipeline that will allow it to operate for 30 years.

Alaskans have special interest in North Korea standoff
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- While the nuclear standoff between the United States and North Korea galvanizes international attention, Alaskans may be forgiven for taking a somewhat parochial interest.

Young retains House leadership positions
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska, will retain his chairmanship of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and his vice chairmanship of the Resources Committee, it was announced Thursday.

Crews reopen a portion of flooded Old Richardson highway
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Department of Transportation crews have partially reopened the Old Richardson Highway to four-wheel-drive traffic after a road grader broke up ice caused by floodwaters from the Tanana River.

Anchorage police investigate homicide
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Anchorage police have identified the 50-year-old man who was found dead in a South Anchorage home Monday as Dennis Kane, an employee of the Alaska Department of Transportation.

Man charged with Alaska murder indicted in conspiracy
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The Tacoma, Wash., man charged last week with the Dec. 27 murder of a woman in an Ester apartment and the attempted murder of another person in Fairbanks has now been accused of conspiring to murder three other people in Fairbanks.

Bering Sea snow crab fishery set to open next week
UNALASKA (AP) -- A total of 195 boats are signed up for the Bering Sea snow crab fishery for the Jan. 15 season opener.

Forty mushers entered in Copper Basin 300
GLENNALLEN (AP) -- The Copper Basin 300, one of the state's premier mid-distance sled dog races, gets under way Saturday in Glennallen.

Cape Fox names new CEO
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- Cape Fox Corp. has hired the chairman of Alaska Pacific University's Business Administration Department as its new chief executive officer.

Eagle River man pleads guilty to same-day airborne hunting
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An Eagle River man has pleaded guilty to illegally killing a moose on the same day he was airborne.

Quakers question No Child Left Behind clause
JUNEAU (AP) -- A Quaker organization wants the Juneau School District to tell parents about their rights to opt out of a portion of the No Child Left Behind Act.

Alaskans honor Binkley at Fairbanks memorial service
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The mourners came to Capt. Jim Binkley's memorial service wearing bunny boots, parkas, Carhartts, moosehide, fur and good cloth overcoats.

Warmer climate creates engineering challenges
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Alaska's warming climate is creating new challenges for state crews grappling with damage to road surfaces, bridges and channels.

Suspected meth lab in Fairbanks raided
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Drug investigators kicked in the door of a motel room Thursday and interrupted two men in the middle of cooking what is suspected to be methamphetamine.

Former Fairbanks woman nominated for Grammy
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Fairbanks' homegrown opera star, Viveca Genaux, has been nominated for a Grammy Award.

Engineering professor builds program around needs of village students
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A frazzled 51-year old white guy from Chicago who started his career shoveling snow at an Arctic pipeline camp is performing miracles at the University of Alaska Anchorage.

Three eyeing post of House majority leader
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Three people are eyeing the job of House majority leader.

Unalaska authorities arrest eight on drug charges
UNALASKA (AP) -- Authorities in Unalaska arrested eight people Thursday for allegedly selling illegal drugs to an undercover agent.

James Johnsen named VP for faculty and staff relations
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- James R. Johnsen, who has been chief of staff for University of Alaska President Mark Hamilton, has been named vice president for faculty and staff relations.

Iron Dog officials delay start of race
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Organizers of the Tesoro Iron Dog Race have delayed the start of the long-distance snowmobile race by one week.

Officials get view of Salcha area flooding
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- In an effort to better understand what is causing flooding in the Salcha area, North Star Borough and state transportation department officials took to the air.

Unruly passenger banned from air travel for one year
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An Eagle River man who threatened a flight attendant has been banned from air travel for one year, the U.S. Attorney's Office said Thursday.

Troopers seek information on missing Virginia girl
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Alaska State Troopers have released a missing juvenile poster for a Virginia girl who may be living in the Fairbanks or North Pole areas.

Kenai borough buys UA land for Seldovia landfill
KENAI (AP) -- The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly has approved spending $632,000 to buy land from the University of Alaska for a new landfill in Seldovia.

Don't expect tax cuts to mean big boost in dividend payouts
NEW YORK (AP) -- Even if a new economic stimulus plan wipes out taxes on dividends for investors, don't count on companies rushing to boost their payouts as a way to woo people to buy their stocks.

Health spending jumps 8.7 percent
WASHINGTON -- Americans' health care spending soared 8.7 percent in 2001, the biggest increase in a decade, as prices surged for everything from prescription drugs to hospital stays.

Watercooler - JOB SEARCH BLUES:
People who are looking for work expect their task to become even harder this year.

Business Briefs
Counseling group names president electHomer chamber offers business listings

Becoming a parent to a parent a difficult task, especially from afar
NEW YORK (AP) -- As her mother has aged, Debbie Stacy has found herself gradually becoming a parent to her own parent.

Inventors fine-tune avalanche detector
JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) -- A pair of inventors is using Jackson Hole avalanche paths to test a device that may be able to sense when snowslides occur in remote locations.

In Antarctica, 'each tomato, each cucumber becomes a jewel, precious'
NEW MARKET, Va. (AP) -- Robert Taylor may have the coolest job of any gardener on Earth. He's the resident greenhouse technician at McMurdo Station, Antarctica.

Navajo doctor is twice the healer
PHOENIX (AP) -- Before seeing his patients, Dr. Michael Tutt sits quietly as nurse Anna Barber folds and ties his waist-long black hair into a traditional Navajo knot, or tsiiyl.

Art Briefs
Gallery soliciting bead worksPoetry contest announcedSocial dance workshops offeredUAA musical auditions to be held

Museum caters to belief that Elvis is alive
WRIGHT CITY, Mo. -- Quicker than you could choke down a fried peanut butter and banana sandwich, Bill Beeny's roadside ''Elvis Is Alive'' museum serves up plenty for folks with suspicious minds over whether Elvis really ever left the building.

Painting political perspectives
The idea of what constitutes art has been continually expanding since early man first started painting on cave walls. Since that time, the term "art" has evolved to include creations that are not just decorative, but that serve religious, structural, social and functional purposes as well.

This actor always plays to a full house
NEW YORK -- The star greets his fans in person, peeking out of the basement door. He leads his flock upstairs -- to a theater like no other.

Homer art studio goes to the dogs Canine captions
Given that the dog-to-human ratio in Homer has got to be above the national average, it was just a matter of time before an artist accepted the canine prompt.

Small-town bookstore attracts large following
BLYTHEVILLE, Ark. -- The landscape in northeastern Arkansas is flat as far as the eye can see.

What's Happening
Best BetsEvents and ExhibitsEntertainmentUpcoming EventsFilmsDown the RoadAnchorage Events

Drivers get back into the groove
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Even before his vacation started, Mark Martin was talking about getting back to work.

2003 Schedule
February 9 to November 16, 2003

Garage-area access might change
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- NASCAR is considering a plan to prohibit drivers from signing autographs in the garage area at tracks.

NASCAR inspectors assume 'nice cop' role during testing
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- There were 21 NASCAR officials patrolling the garage area during this week's test session at Daytona International Speedway, but they weren't looking too hard for problems.

State's convention centers get late-year boost
Alaska convention and visitors centers had a busy December in spite of -- or perhaps because of -- a stagnant year for tourism.

Help available to those wanting to quit drinking
The Christmas holidays prompt many to quit drinking and abusing drugs, according to Kenai Peninsula alcohol and drug abuse treatment centers.

Ready to do some business
The Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development isn't just about handing out unemployment checks or enforcing labor laws. It's about helping private enterprise, government and the public connect to create a better economy for the state.

Seldovia dump site ignites bit of a stink
The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly approved spending $632,000 Tuesday night to buy land from the University of Alaska for a new solid waste disposal facility in Seldovia.

Fire strikes Sterling home
A mobile home and attached lean-to in Sterling were destroyed by fire Monday afternoon. No one was injured in the blaze.

Photo feature: No shortage of snow
Richard Hamilton blows this winter's supply of snow from The Salvation Army's roof while volunteering time for the organization Wednesday afternoon. Forecasters are calling for clouds today and more snow Friday.

Wagoner lawsuit advances
Attorneys representing two Nikiski residents who say the election of Thomas Wagoner to the Alaska Senate should be overturned have filed an appeal with the Alaska Supreme Court, after losing their case in Alaska Superior Court on Monday.

District budgets without figures
Melody Douglas' job isn't getting easier. The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District chief financial officer is in a tricky spot this month, as the district begins budgeting for the 2004 fiscal year without a settlement in teacher and support staff contract negotiations.

New permanent fund spokesperson named
JUNEAU -- City Tourism Director Maria Gladziszewski will move to the Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. as its communications director.

Thorny issue slows paving
The Soldotna City Council is taking time to pave the flowers.

Richard Warren Craig Chernikoff
Richard Warren Craig Chernikoff died Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2003, at Central Peninsula General Hospital. He was 9 months old.

Thomas Harold Harbick
Nikiski resident Thomas Harold Harbick died Saturday, Jan. 4, 2003, in a car accident. He was 48.

Stephen B. Gardner
Former Anchor Point resident Stephen B. Gardner died Sunday, Jan. 5, 2003, at Valley Hospital in Palmer. He was 46.

Oilers sign UCLA right-hander
UCLA right-handed pitcher Kyle Wilson has joined the 2003 Oilers team. The 6-foot-2 sophomore is from Valencia, Calif.

Letters to the Editor
Reporters should remember family when writing about accident victimShooting in Sterling calls for us to exercise compassion, good willMan shot by troopers not innocent victim; troopers doing their jobTroopers forced to make life-death decisions while doing their dutyWill troopers admit if they were wrong; what's the whole story?

Letters to the Editor
Troopers actions raise questions,leave victims family devastated Job requires law enforcement officers put their lives on line Why didnt Casey Porters friends stop him from driving? Mr. Porters condition should have prevented him from driving Early-run kings are in trouble; are guides part of the problem? Letter writer meant no harm Vandals should knock it off and leave snowpeople alone

Transportation security better than it was, but more should be done
Ever since Pan Am Flight 103 blew up over Lockerbie, Scotland, nearly 15 years ago, killing 270 people, terrorism experts have recognized the danger presented by a bomb in the belly of an aircraft.

U.S. must carefully defuse threat posed
North Korea already has two nuclear weapons, says Secretary of State Colin Powell.

Applause
Teen Center appreciates volunteers, community support for its dances

Vocabulary guide to understanding snowboarders
ALYESKA RESORT, Alaska -- So this kid rips it off the South Face, does a backside 360, stomps it and thinks he's so sick.

New Kenai National Wildlife Refuge ecologist comes full circle
Looking at my calendar it's hard to believe only two months have passed since I started my new job as an ecologist for the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. It's been a year of major changes, peaking with my wedding this past June. Though it was hard to leave Juneau and Southeast Alaska, my home for 12 years, the rumor was it rains less on the Kenai Peninsula. After being delayed in Tok by an earthquake, we arrived in Kenai just in time for the rain and floods. Thankfully, the natural disasters have become less routine and my schedule more so. I'm also thankful for the great group of people I work with at the refuge.

Conservation corps hits end of line
ELBA, Minn. -- The rotting box elder that leaned over a pond behind the Whitewater State Park headquarters would make an ideal loafing log for turtles and wood ducks. All it needed was a little help.

Around the Peninsula
KPC open house, registration todaySled dog association to meet tonightElks to hold Hoop Shoot SaturdayRace seeks volunteersBook club meeting plannedFund-raising auction planned

Around the Peninsula
KPC registration today Moving sale to support area family Elks to hold Hoop Shoot Saturday Ski teams to sell prom dresses District to hold public meetings Community club to meet Genealogy class planned Blood Bank needs blood

Union Theological seminary leases buildings to raise money
NEW YORK (AP) -- The country's oldest nondenominational seminary has agreed to lease three of its buildings to Columbia University for 49 years as it struggles to shore up its income.

Indonesia's main Islamic groups campaign against Islamic law
JAKARTA, Indonesia (AP) -- Indonesia's two largest moderate Muslim organizations have called on radical groups to end a campaign for the imposition of Islamic law, or Shariah.

Pittsburgh Episcopal bishop steps back from conservative-liberal fight
PITTSBURGH (AP) -- An Episcopal bishop has withdrawn from the feud between another Pennsylvania church leader and a conservative priest over same-sex unions and ordaining women.

Across the major religions, cloning for human reproduction is denounced
The Raelian movement may or may not prove it produced the first cloned human, but the sect can already claim another distinction: It is virtually the only religious group that says this type of reproduction is a good idea.

Boston Priests Forum leaders want clergy to speak out against abuse
BOSTON (AP) -- To the Rev. Robert Bullock, the lesson of the clerical sex abuse crisis that began in his own Boston Archdiocese is simple -- priests cannot risk remaining silent and subservient.

Church Briefs
Pastor from Siberia to speak here Trumpet of Faith conference set Bible study offered Homer church gives away coats Dawn Mallette to speak Single parents program offered Training institute planned Healing Rooms open weekends

Former bishop's name to be removed from church building
OAK RIDGE, Tenn. (AP) -- The name of a former Roman Catholic bishop who resigned last year after admitting to sexually abusing a student will be removed from a church's family life center.

Greek Orthodox celebrate Epiphany on shore of Golden Horn
ISTANBUL, Turkey (AP) -- Almost a dozen Greek Orthodox competed in the freezing waters of Istanbul's Golden Horn to retrieve a wooden cross in a ceremony Monday commemorating the baptism of Jesus Christ.

Even in jail cells, Jesus is there
In an unusual prison cell in Brazil lies an unusual prisoner

Poverty contributes to health problems in Arkansas' rural elderly
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) -- If Grace Seligman had only one or two ailments, selecting a primary-care physician in her hometown of Dumas would be an easier choice.

Central peninsula trails getting by with thin layer of white
Although it may sound like a quote from the movie Scarface, it's peninsula skiers and not Tony Montana saying, "There's just not enough white stuff."

Unhappy trails
The November floods and low snowfall early in the winter have teamed up to create some dangerous areas for snowmachiners in the Caribou Hills.

No. 2 Arizona maintains mastery of Washington State
TUCSON, Ariz. -- Jason Gardner scored 19 points to lead four Arizona players in double figures but the No. 2 Wildcats struggled much of the night Thursday before beating Washington State for the 35th consecutive time, 82-69.

Indiana edges reeling Knicks
INDIANAPOLIS -- Ron Mercer scored 19 points, Reggie Miller had 18 and the Indiana Pacers came away with an 89-87 victory Wednesday night as the New York Knicks missed three shots on their final possession.

SoHi girls snatch game from Nikiski
The Soldotna High School girls basketball team showed Thursday why they're one of the teams to beat this season on the Kenai Peninsula. So did the Nikiski Bulldogs.

Sports Briefs
Ninilchik sweeps Homer ChristianTagliabue implements changes in officiatingSenators miss paycheck but surge to top of NHL

Ottawa seeks owner, files for bankruptcy
OTTAWA (AP) -- The Ottawa Senators filed for bankruptcy protection Thursday, seeking to avoid paying creditors while they look for a buyer.

Kenai, Nikiski start Tip-Off with victories
Palmer, Kodiak, Kenai and Nikiski all picked up wins Thursday in the first round of the 2003 Subway Soldotna Tip-Off Tournament.

Holmes named top offensive player
Priest Holmes accomplished in 14 games what many players can't in two full seasons. His reward: The Associated Press NFL Offensive Player of the Year award.

Area small schools look to repeat success
Last year, the small-schools basketball teams on the peninsula cleaned up, with Ninilchik winning Class 2A girls state, Cook Inlet Academy defeating Ninilchik for the Class 2A boys state crown and Nikiski taking home Class 3A girls state hardware.

No. 1 Blue Devils rough up Georgetown
DURHAM, N.C. -- Dahntay Jones matched his career high with 22 points and Daniel Ewing added a career-best 19 as No. 1 Duke overcame a poor outing from the foul line to beat a physical Georgetown team 93-86 Wednesday night.

Sports Briefs
Warriors drop two in Yakutat Bulldogs skaters top Hawks Home-field advantage goes to Furyk Selig still thinking about All-Star options Rafter announces official retirement

Can Pennington pull a Montana?
Young Joe Montana against old Joe Montana?

McNabb, Eagles should soar over Falcons
The oddsmakers don't buy the argument that Michael Vick can cancel out Donovan McNabb in Philadelphia.

Kings topple New Jersey
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- The Sacramento Kings considered it a measuring stick game. By the time it ended, they were standing a whole lot taller than the New Jersey Nets.

Flyers strand Islanders for fifth straight victory
UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- Roman Cechmanek made 24 saves for his first shutout of the season, and Eric Desjardins had a goal and assist in the Philadelphia Flyers' 4-0 victory over the New York Islanders on Thursday night.

Rangers get back on track at home
NEW YORK -- Bobby Holik scored twice and newly acquired defenseman Boris Mironov had two assists as the New York Rangers snapped a five-game home winless streak with a 5-1 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Wednesday night.

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