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Tuesday, January 16, 2001

Fairbanks Daily News-Miner on state-mandated school exit exams:
Mixed with Wednesday's mostly upbeat State of the State address, Gov. Tony Knowles referred to a statutory deadline that ought to concern every Alaskan.

Trucks and cars using ice road to Bethel
BETHEL (AP) -- The ice road that runs from Napakiak to Bethel along the Kuskokwim River is not officially open yet, but trucks and cars are using it anyway.

Knowles to do ANWR drilling spot on 60 Minutes
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Gov. Tony Knowles will join a crew from the CBS news program 60 Minutes in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge on Tuesday, as proposed oil development in ANWR's coastal plain looms as a difficult battle for the president-elect.

Snowmachine death toll appears headed for another record
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Despite unseasonably warm weather and a general lack of snow, the number of snowmachine fatalities in Alaska appears headed toward a new record.

Voters certify cruise ship passenger fee initiative
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- A special election will be held now that a petition seeking a fee on cruise ship passengers has gotten enough support from Ketchikan Gateway Borough voters.

More Alaskans appear headed to inaugural events than usual
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Susan Butcher and one of her sled dog teams will be joining dozens of other Alaskans headed to the nation's capital this weekend to participate in inaugural festivities.

Anchorage skiers crack top 25
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Alaska skiers Nina Kemppel and Kikkan Randall posted top-25 finishes Sunday in a women's World Cup cross-country ski race at Soldier Hollow, Utah.

Crabbers sit out opener in dispute over prices
UNALASKA (AP) -- The Bering Sea snow crab fishery opened at noon Monday, but most of the fleet was tied up at port in a price dispute.

FCC awards Dillingham license for low-power radio station
DILLINGHAM (AP) -- The Federal Communications Commission is poised to award Dillingham a low power, noncommercial radio station.

Report knocks 1998 education funding rewrite
JUNEAU (AP) -- The Department of Education and Early Development called Monday for a repeal of part of the Legislature's 1998 rewrite of the formula allocating state aid to local school districts.

Rocket launches postponed at Poker Flats
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The rocket launches to study the aurora have been postponed at the University of Alaska Fairbanks' Poker Flats Rocket Range.

Elderly trapper shot to death in Nenana
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Authorities are investigating the shooting death of a subsistence trapper who lived alone in his cabin at Nenana.

New limits on guns in Canada
JUNEAU (AP) -- Alaskans taking firearms across Canada could face delays or even confiscation of their weapons if they don't follow new Canadian laws that went into effect Jan. 1. They'll pay a $33 fee just to cross into Canada with a firearm.

Fish Board votes not to limit Copper River salmon fishery
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Alaska Board of Fisheries rejected a proposal that would have limited the Copper River commercial salmon fishery to allow more fish to swim upriver for dipnetters.

Three die in snowmachine accidents
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Three men are dead after weekend snowmobile accidents in Alaska, according to Alaska State Troopers.

Voters certify cruise ship passenger fee initiative
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- A special election will be held now that a petition seeking a fee on cruise ship passengers has gotten enough support from Ketchikan Gateway Borough voters.

Quest purse secure, official says
WHITEHORSE, Yukon (AP) -- Even without a title sponsor, the Yukon Quest will have the money it needs for the $125,000 purse, according to Derek Charlton, the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race's new marketing and partnership officer.

Juneau man killed in El Salvador earthquake
JUNEAU (AP) -- A Juneau man was among hundreds of people killed Saturday in the El Salvador earthquake.

Five sites proposed for new radar tower
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Five sites have been proposed for a new 75-foot tower to replace the 20-year-old air traffic radar at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport.

Miners association says it will fight new rules
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The Alaska Miners Association is going to fight new mining regulations it says are designed to drive the mining industry out of business in Alaska.

Budget trigger suggestion draws cautious response
Gov. Tony Knowles' latest suggestion for solving the state's long-term budget problems -- new sources of revenue triggered only when cash reserves approach empty -- drew cautious and sometimes dubious responses from lawmakers during the Legislature's first week

Peninsula Clarion on keeping in touch with your legislators:
Legislators can seem a world away once the legislative session convenes.

Board of Fisheries meeting ongoing in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Alaskan Board of Fisheries meeting is underway at a downtown hotel where some of the state's toughest fish fights are expected to take place over the next three weeks.

Juneau Empire on drunk driving laws:
Without sounding preachy, it is important to acknowledge and endorse attempts in the Alaska Legislature to toughen the state's drunken driving laws.

Arctic caribou herds up 35 percent
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The only Alaska caribou herd to share its range with oil facilities is growing by leaps and bounds.

Anchorage Daily News on strong news about state, but challenges ahead:
There was a mood of minimalist satisfaction in Juneau Wednesday as Gov. Tony Knowles delivered his seventh State of the State Address, declaring that ''the state of our state is strong.''

EPA to require cleaner fuels
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Diesel used in cars and trucks in Bush Alaska eventually will have to meet a tough new federal standard for sulfur, though remote areas won't have to hit the goal by 2006, the deadline for drivers on the road system, federal regulators say.

Community Calendar
The Community Calendar lists events and meetings of nonprofit organizations. Deadline for submissions is noon the preceding day. To have your event listed, or to change any information, call 283-7551 or fax 283-3299.

Around the Peninsula
BP Classic on chamber luncheon agendaComments sought on bike pathLand user group to meet tonightLeague of Women Voters meets ThursdayDAV chapter to meet ThursdaySterling Community Club meeting coming upDog racers to meet ThursdayEDD board meeting set for Thursday Raising goats information offeredAlumni of 1981 sought

Around the Peninsula
Snowmachines allowed in Chugach Forest Anchor Point to hold luncheonRetired persons to meet Historical meeting slatedKPC classes still availableHospice event planned

Community Calendar
The Community Calendar lists events and meetings of nonprofit organizations. Deadline for submissions is noon the preceding day. To have your event listed, or to change any information, call 283-7551 or fax 283-3299.

Kasilof's Gebhardt scratches in trying to defend CB 300 crown
GLENNALLEN -- Musher DeeDee Jonrowe won the Copper Basin 300 Sled Dog Race Monday with a team she's tuning up for the 1,100-mile Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race in March.

Convention center options weighed
The city of Soldotna continues to take steps toward attracting more conventions to town. However, some city council members disagree slightly on what direction the city may be going.

Hands-on (and off) experience
Daniel Sarks and his father, Paul, make tracks down the sledding hill on the bluff above Cook Inlet at the end of Forest Drive Saturday afternoon.

AED donation sparks life-saving training
Watching her co-worker that morning, Nancy Myers remembered thinking, "Man, she's quiet."

Oil, gas meetings draw little interest
A public meeting in Soldotna to explain the process for writing a new five-year offshore oil and gas leasing plan drew just two local citizens, and one of those was a local government official.

Council member throws hat into the ring
The race to replace Rep. Ken Lancaster as Soldotna mayor has begun.

Grazing leases renewal in limbo
For decades, a handful of families have ranched in the rolling backcountry of the Kenai Peninsula. However, they worry that 2001 may see the end of that tradition.

Photo feature: Catching some action
Eiger the dog catches air while trying to catch a snowball tossed by William Oliva during a break in a hockey game at the Jason Peterson Memorial Ice Rink last weekend.

Federal funds could reduce wildfire risk
Fifteen Kenai Peninsula communities appear on a preliminary nationwide list of those that could benefit from a federal program to remove hazardous fuels to reduce the risk from wildfires.

Wish lists get finishing touches
Move over Christmas lists. There are new lists in town.

Budget idea draws cautious response
Gov. Tony Knowles' latest suggestion for solving the state's long-term budget problems -- new sources of revenue triggered only when cash reserves approach empty -- drew cautious and sometimes dubious responses from lawmakers during the Legislature's first week.

Crime Stoppers works Program gets FBI's thumbs-up
It is not often that a nonprofit organization gets applause from the director of the FBI. Of course, it's not every day that an organization like Crime Stoppers comes along, either.

William "Bill" Dudley Thurmond
Alaska Native William "Bill" Dudley Thurmond died Jan. 10, 2001, at the Alaska Native Medical Center in Anchorage. He was 45.

Robin Edward Pennington
Sterling resident Robin Edward Pennington died Jan. 7, 2001, as a result of a motor vehicle accident on the Sterling Highway. He was 55.

Bruce H. Simon
New Hampshire resident Bruce H. Simon died Saturday, Jan. 13, 2001, at the Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Mass. He was 55.

Legislators get down to business
The 22nd Legislature began Jan. 8 with the swearing in of the newly elected or re-elected members of the House and Senate. I was pleased to watch our new Hou

Governor offers solid facts from which to view economy with optimism
With perception often serving as reality, those in positions of influence should be vigilant in their efforts to keep perceptions in the same neighborhood as facts.

Applause
Judges earn praise for time spent on youth essay programNew school board member looks forward to challenges of position

Can 'exit exam' be useful tool without being graduation requirement?
Though not a glorious spectator sport compared to the Supreme Court's election of a president or even a local annexation fight, it is best not to ignore the battle over "exit exams" as a way to measure the achievement and needs of schools and students.

High school exit exam deserves careful study by Alaska's lawmakers
Mixed with Wednesday's mostly upbeat State of the State address, Gov. Tony Knowles referred to a statutory deadline that ought to concern every Alaskan.

Letters to the Editor
Big corporations don't realize how they hurt small businessesCoalition would divide fish without regard to Alaska lawEarnings from permanent fund should pay for college education

Peninsula People
Kenai woman receives degreeNikiski woman graduates Navy training Students earn honors Area resident enlist in U.S. ArmyExecutive Council board of directors announced

Amy and Greg Ponsness
Amy and Greg Ponsness of Kenai announce the birth of their daughter, Ashley Tye Ponsness, at 2:31 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 28, 2000. at Central Peninsula General Hospital on Soldotna.

Terrah and Oliver Amend III
Terrah and Oliver Amend III of Kenai announce the birth of their son,Knox Zephyr Amend at 9:43 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 26, 2000, at Frontier Midwifery Birth Center in Soldotna.

Community Schools
This listing of Soldotna Community School classes beginning this week serves as a reminder for preregistered participants.

Newly crowned
The Kenai area Pioneers of Alaska Igloo No. 33 and Auxiliary No. 16 recently crowned Jim and Patty Herrick as King and Queen Regent for 2001.

Community News
Ping pong tourney results Class reunion planned Search for Mrs. Alaska slated Host families needed

Ask a Trooper
Last week, our son accidentally dialed 911, and when the troopers arrived, they came into our house to check it out even though we told them things were fine and that we'd rather they not come in.

Seniors buck warmth, shuffleboard for active retirement in Branson
BRANSON, Mo. -- Retirement isn't what it used to be. Days filled with sunshine and shuffleboard are a thing of the past for many. Hours spent playing gin rummy and roving the golf course are seen as wasted.

Senior Briefs
Forget-Me-Not Care CenterHomerKenaiNikiskiSoldotnaSterling

Senior Menus
Kenai Nikiski SoldotnaSterling Homer

Barrow, Seward split nonconference tilts
The Barrow and Seward girls and boys basketball teams split Monday night in nonconference action in Seward.

SoHi skaters edge Bartlett
The Soldotna hockey team improved its record to 13-3-1 on the year Saturday night with a 3-2 nonconference victory over Bartlett at the Soldotna Sports Center.

Irish knock off No. 1 UConn
SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Third-ranked Notre Dame, responding to the largest home crowd in school history, beat No. 1 Connecticut 92-76 on Monday to end the Huskies' 30-game winning streak. It was Connecticut's worst loss in more than seven years.

Ravens pick off Raiders
OAKLAND, Calif. -- Defense isn't boring. Not the way Baltimore plays it.

Giants' Fassel, Collins replace Parcells, Simms
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Proudly wearing his NFC championship T-shirt and baseball cap, Kerry Collins stood with his arm around Jim Fassel. Together, they'd taken the New York Giants where almost nobody thought they could go -- to the Super Bowl.

Shooting Star
Soldotna senior Nick Christensen has no problem thinking back to where it all began.

Skyview triumphs at tourney
The Skyview girls basketball team defeated Unalakleet 52-41 Saturday to win the Nome Invitational.

Hakkinen 42nd in World Cup
Kasilof biathlete Jay Hakkinen, 23, finished 42nd in a 12.5-kilometer sprint pursuit Sunday in World Cup #5 in Ruhpolding, Germany. The event was held before a passionate crowd of over 10,000 fans.

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