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Monday, January 21, 2002

Archaeological find turns into landmark court case
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A round white bone protruded from the moss beneath a limestone crag. Ian Lynch dropped to his knees and dug in the dirt with his fingers. He lifted a skull and gazed into the eye sockets of a human child.

GED students to see changes in exam
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Students seeking a General Equivalency Diploma will take a test radically different than the ones offered the last 14 years.

Murkowski says more dialogue needed to solve state fiscal problems
KENAI (AP) -- Alaska's fiscal crisis has been exacerbated by the lack of dialogue between the Legislature and governor -- something he can fix if elected governor, Sen. Frank Murkowski said.

Homer woman missing, feared dead after kayak overturns
HOMER (AP) -- A Homer woman is missing and feared dead after a weekend kayaking mishap near Tutka Bay.

Survey could mean dipnetters won't have to pay fee
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A state transportation survey could mean that dipnetters won't pay to scoop salmon out of the Copper River this summer at Chitina.

Jeff King wins 6th Kuskokwim 300
BETHEL (AP) -- Jeff King won the Kuskokwim 300 Sled Dog Race early Monday, for an unprecedented sixth victory in the race.

Fuel found in Cooper Landing stream
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A small diesel spill might have gone unnoticed if not for a program that taps volunteers to gauge the health of salmon-spawning tributaries feeding the Kenai River.

Knowles to ask for $21 million to market salmon, tourism and oil
JUNEAU (AP) -- Gov. Tony Knowles will ask the Legislature for $20 million to aid the state's salmon and tourism industries in marketing plans.

Income tax could cost family of four $1,150
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Gov. Tony Knowles' proposed income tax would cost the average Alaska household about $1,150, according to administration estimates.

Cook Inlet beluga population appears to be growing
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Cook Inlet beluga whale population continues to show signs of recovery after a decade-long decline.

Sealaska announces joint venture in plastics
JUNEAU (AP) -- Sealaska Corp. and Nypro announced Thursday they have entered into a joint venture for a plastics injection molding operation in Guadalajara, Mexico.

Boy, 8, killed in Fairbanks vehicle collision
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- An 8-year-old boy was killed in a head-on collision in Fairbanks Sunday night.

Federal dollars fuel Alaska Railroad building boom
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Nearly $300 million in federal funds is fueling a building boom for the Alaska Railroad.

Exxon Valdez spill scientists to gather in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- More than three dozen scientists studying the effects of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill are meeting in Anchorage this week.

Deck worker struck by 700-pound crab pot
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A 34-year-old man was struck in the chest by a 700-pound crab pot while working on a crab boat in the Bering Sea, the Coast Guard said Saturday.

FAA, airport spending $15 million to soundproof 650 homes
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Federal Aviation Administration and Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport will spend $15 million over the next decade to insulate homes rattled by airplane noise.

Unemployment rate up but still low
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Alaska's unemployment rate rose in December, when about 18,650 people were jobless and looking for work.

Jan. 11, 2002 The Petersburg Pilot says fairwell to one of its pioneers
Chris Christensen passed away just days after Christmas this year. We'll miss all the stories he shared with us about life in Petersburg and on the farm in South Dakota.

ANWR lobbying bill on fast track before Legislature
JUNEAU (AP) -- A bill to give a nonprofit group $1 million more to continue lobbying for the opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is positioned to zoom through the Legislature.

Jan. 16, 2002 The Anchorage Daily News says why it supports increasing alcohol tax
Count on liquor industry advocates to do their best to tie liquor tax proposals into the drive for a comprehensive fiscal plan in Juneau -- thereby diverting attention from liquor-tax policy and onto the even more important question of fiscal sanity.

Iditarod falls short of Iditarider funds goal
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Iditarod Trail Committee is looking for a last-minute surge of bids from people who want to ride with mushers at the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race race in March.

Jan. 17, 2002 The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner urges lawmakers to craft a fiscal plan
With some major issues facing Alaska state government, it will be a year of tough decisions for legislators. Perhaps the biggest challenge lies in resolving the state's financial worries.

Men charged in UAF construction thefts
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Two Fairbanks men and two female juveniles have been charged with stealing power tools from a University of Alaska Fairbanks construction site over Christmas break.

Jan. 17, 2002 Alaska Newspapers Inc. notes parallels between civil rights and subsistence rights
The second session of the 22nd Legislature convened Jan. 14, the day before Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday.

No delays reported due to baggage checks at major Alaska airports
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- No major delays were reported at Alaska's two largest international airports Friday, when a federal law requiring increased baggage screening took effect.

BLM pursuing Beaver Creek buyouts
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The federal Bureau of Land Management hopes to buy out private property owners along Beaver Creek, which was designated as a ''national wild and scenic river'' by Congress in 1980s.

Minority Democrats want special election to replace U.S. Senator
JUNEAU (AP) -- Minority Democrats in the state Legislature are proposing a measure to create a special election to replace a U.S. Senate vacancy.

Ceremonial start gives kids a free ride
The 2002 Tustumena 200 Sled Dog Race gets under way Saturday with a ceremonial start in Kenai at 10 a.m. The ceremonial start gives special-needs children from the community the chance to ride along with mushers and experience firsthand what sled dog racing is all about.

From there to here: T-200 makes big gains
As many Alaskans can tell you, the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race traces its origins to a famous serum run from Nenana to Nome. Like the Iditarod, the Kenai Peninsula's Tustumena 200 Sled Dog Race has its roots in a similar, if less urgent dog-powered trek.

Sorting myth from fact during flu, cold season
There's no such thing as stomach flu. And no, you shouldn't starve a fever.

Kasilof residents split over future of community
Attempts to create a unified community council and action plan for Kasilof met a mixed reception at a meeting organized by the Kenai Peninsula Resource Conservation and Development District Thursday night.

Army takes over, Marines leave Afghan base
KANDAHAR, Afghanistan -- Bent under the weight of backpacks, M-16s and rocket launchers, U.S. Marines on Saturday took flights out of Afghanistan, after handing over to the Army the military base they set up in the Taliban heartland.

Group delves into possible borough land uses across inlet
The Kenai Peninsula Borough will receive 10,000 acres of state entitlement lands on the Kustatan Ridge, across Cook Inlet, in the near future. In anticipation of the land transfer, the West Side Development Project, a group of borough residents, community leaders and business persons, have begun to explore just how the lands can benefit everyone on the peninsula.

Boat wakes return to KRSMA agenda
Kenai River Special Management Area advisory board members were brought up to speed on several projects affecting the management area in their meeting at the Kenai River Center on Thursday.

Helicopter crash in Afghanistan kills 2, injures 5
BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghan-istan -- A U.S. helicopter crashed in the rugged mountains of Afghanistan on Sunday, killing two Marines and injuring the other five on board. It was the third fatal crash of a U.S. military aircraft in the campaign.

Sean O'Loughlin
Soldotna resident Sean O'Loughlin died Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2002, in Portland, Ore. He was 79.

Reflections on 2001, plans for 2002 Constitutional spending limit could be important step in closing fiscal gap
Before I share my legislative priorities with you for the upcoming session, I would like to take a few moments to reflect on the past year -- the national events as well as the personal tragedies and triumphs from 2001.

Applause
Support for youth essay program appreciated

Strategists wonder if Sept. 11 brought about changes in voters' attitudes
WASHINGTON -- Thrown off balance by President Bush's post-Sept. 11 popularity, Democrats are struggling to find their footing in the run-up to the November midterm elections. But so far, they're not finding much traction on any issue other than the economy.

More people seeking help for depression, and that's good news
The number of Americans seeking doctors' help for depression has zoomed, with an astonishing tripling of treatment rates in the 10-year period ending in 1997, according to a study published last week.

High-tech dreams clash with computer's desires
I'm guilty. I admit it. I have worked for a newspaper consistently for the last 11 years. And during that time, I've sat behind a desk with a large glowing object on it, and I still don't understand what makes it tick.

Events of past year transform not just presidency, but Bush
WASHINGTON -- Friends notice more gray in his hair and more confidence in his voice. Few people call him an isolationist anymore. Fewer still question whether he's up to the job.

Ask the Mayor
Question: How big is the Kenai Peninsula Borough and what is the population?

Lack of security just as scary as shortage of education funding
As the United States ponders security issues in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, one wonders: How secure is secure enough? And, how much are we willing to pay for that security?

On Bush's popularity
... Bush's popularity depends to a large degree on the fact that he has acted in a statesmanlike way, that he has been above the political bickering and acted for the security of the nation. But there are critics.

Community Schools
This listing of Soldotna Community School classes beginning this week serves as a reminder for preregistered participants. Most classes require preregistration and prepayment.

Kenai couple turns peninsula life into treasured time
Through the telescope strategically placed in their Kenai living room, Phil and Betty Ames watch ships sailing up and down Cook Inlet.

Around the Peninsula
Alaska Independent Blind meeting scheduledHospital service area board to meetPublic health clinic closed for holidayPDK to present informational panelRed Cross offering CPR classesHomer chamber to hold awards programSnaring seminar to be offeredWinter fun day to be held at the refugeHomer Community School offering multiple classesGuide registration forms availableWomen's brunch to be held

Club News
Elks table tennis tournament winners announced

Around the Peninsula
Public comment sought on teachers' contract talksUFA rep to speak at CIAACounseling service to hold annual meetingWorkshop on workplace age differences setTown and Gown banquet slatedChugach National Forest phone numbers change

Births
Chrissy and Jay MorrisonCrystal GriffithTeresa and James Danielson

Odd lodging: Staying in caves, igloos, under the sea, treehouses
Ever dream of sleeping under the sea? Or reliving your childhood up in a tree? How about a fantastical winter wedding in an elaborate igloo? Or spending a week as lighthouse keepers? These unusual lodging establishments offer something special for travelers in search of a little whimsy:

Ask a Trooper
Question: Is it legal for the public to kill a moose that is obviously injured beyond survivability? Varying degrees of trauma could be misconstrued as a fatal wound, however sometimes trooper/wildlife protection response is slow due to other priorities, and the animal may lay in pain, and/or present a road hazard.

Web sites help out first-year parents
The Extension Office has received a newsletter series from the University of Wisconsin-Extension entitled, "Parenting the First Year." This parenting information is presented in 12, eight-page newsletters that focus on the month-to-month development of a child during the first year.

Peninsula People
Central peninsula residents enlistKenai students named to Dean's List

Photo feature: Sitting pretty
Gary Foster's dog Selawik is all dressed up with somewhere to go as she waits in the bed of his truck at the Kenai Post Office.

Schools staff seeking increase
Negotiations began Friday in what bode to be difficult contract talks between the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District and unions representing its teachers and support staff.

Lambe second at JOQ event
Skyview student Stephanie Lambe led all peninsula skiers Saturday at a Junior Olympics qualifying race at the McNeil Canyon Ski Trails in Homer.

Photo feature: Motoring
Mike Christian hops over a jump during a snowmachine ride alongside the Kenai Spur Highway Saturday morning. Outdoor enthusiasts still have their eyes on the clouds as they hope for more snow.

Ninilchik girls start season with Heritage Tourney crown
The Ninilchik High School girls basketball team swept their games at the Heritage Christian Tournament, defeating the Delta Huskies 66-21 on Friday and finishing off the tourney with a 40-38 win over the host Eagles Saturday.

Jordan picks up victory in return to Chicago
CHICAGO -- Michael Jordan offset a career-high nine turnovers with 16 points and 12 rebounds in his first game in Chicago as a visiting player, leading the Washington Wizards to a 77-69 victory over the Bulls on Saturday.

NFL explains controversial ruling
FOXBORO, Mass. -- Upon further review, the NFL will review its rule governing what separates a fumble from an incomplete pass.

Slow-starting Cavaliers down Florida State
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- Chris Williams scored 24 points, including the first three in a 19-6 run to begin the second half, and No. 10 Virginia pulled away to beat Florida State 91-74 Sunday.

Palmer hockey's shocker
It should come as no surprise to followers of hockey, particularly Team USA, that the skaters from Palmer High School saw fit to alter the appearance of the Soldotna Sports Center early Friday.

Soldotna hockey knocks off fourth Anchorage school
For the first time in the 20-year history of the program, the Soldotna hockey team has defeated four Anchorage schools in the regular season.

Capriati moves to quarterfinals
MELBOURNE, Australia -- Defending champion Jennifer Capriati fought her way into the Australian Open quarterfinals Monday, beating determined Rita Grande 6-3, 7-6 (9).

Steelers' resolve wilts Baltimore
PITTSBURGH -- The Steel Curtain would have loved this.

No. 1 Duke breezes past No. 14 Wake Forest
DURHAM, N.C. -- Jason Williams had 23 points, Dahntay Jones added 22 and Carlos Boozer had 20 and 18 rebounds as top-ranked Duke rolled over No. 14 Wake Forest 103-80 Saturday.

Panthers' Bure to return against Montreal
SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida Panthers right wing Pavel Bure will play Monday against Montreal after missing five games with a fractured left hand.

Controversial replay ruling helps Patriots top Raiders in snowstorm
FOXBORO, Mass. -- The New England Patriots plowed into the AFC championship game with a big push from the referee.

He carried the helmet, now he owns the scalp
During a stopover in Green Bay, when he was struggling just to land a job as a backup, one of Kurt Warner's rookie chores was to carry Brett Favre's helmet.

After long break, Nikiski earns split with ACS
The Nikiski High School girls basketball had no trouble getting back into the swing of things after a month off, defeating the visiting Anchorage Christian Schools Lions 59-29 Friday in a District 3/3A game.

Stars down Mustangs
A defense that had been cause for Soldotna hockey coach Pat Nolden to worry has now become a source of pride.

Sports Briefs
Koznik, Oester share victory in slalomMiller third in slalom despite breaking poleYagudin takes European title

SoHi's Knight skis to Besh Cup victory
Soldotna's Brent Knight led the contingent of skiers at the Besh Cup competition in Homer Saturday, taking the top spot in the boys J1 category at McNeil Canyon Trails.

Hurricanes summon third-period rally to tie New Jersey
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Defenseman Aaron Ward scored with 2:53 left to cap a two-goal third-period rally, giving the Carolina Hurricanes a 3-3 tie with the New Jersey Devils on Saturday.

Rams play pick Pack
ST. LOUIS -- More records fell at the hands of the St. Louis Rams.

SkyHi boys, SoHi girls roast rivals
The Soldotna Stars stole the spotlight at their home opener against Skyview's girls basketball team Saturday evening. Soldotna took the ball -- and the game -- and ran with it, defeating the Panthers 58-34.

Red Wings top Senators
DETROIT -- Detroit captain Steve Yzerman collected his 1,000th career assist on Mathieu Dandenault's game-winning goal 59 seconds into overtime as the Red Wings beat the Ottawa Senators 3-2 on Sunday night.

Sports Briefs
Minnesota tops Alaska AnchorageHaas leads Bob Hope ClassicDunhill Championship

Mickelson takes Bob Hope Classic
LA QUINTA, Calif. -- A five-month layoff seemed to make Phil Mickelson even better.

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