Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Winds kindle wildfire danger in Southcentral Alaska
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Authorities are warning residents of Anchorage and the Matanuska and Susitna valleys that strong winds, dry weather and unusual ground conditions have created an early wildfire hazard, and they discouraged any kind of burning.

Soldotna facility becomes certified in hospice care
SOLDOTNA (AP) -- Alaska has a second facility certified to provide Medicare-licensed hospice care.

Man arrested on drug trafficking charge
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An Anchorage man was charged with drug trafficking for allegedly trying to smuggle marijuana into the western Alaska village of Stebbins.

U.S. attorney reopens investigation into Alaska Airlines crash
SEATTLE (AP) Federal authorities have reopened a criminal investigation into the January 2000 crash of Alaska Airlines Flight 261, the airline's parent company disclosed Wednesday.

Murkowski budget has money for Interior roads
FAIRBANKS (AP) Gov. Frank Murkowski's proposed capital budget includes transportation and improvement projects for the Interior, including big improvements to Fairbanks International Airport.

Stevens vows to fight cuts to essential air service
FAIRBANKS (AP) The Bush administration wants to cut the cost of subsidizing air service to small towns in Alaska and elsewhere by making the towns put up some of the money.

Committee to take up ANWR bill
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The U.S. House Resources Committee will consider Alaska Rep. Don Young's bill to allow oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

Intense search turns up no track of missing brothers
ANCHORAGE (AP) A massive search of a South Anchorage neighborhood has failed to turn up any sign of two young brothers who disappeared Monday.

Bill would require state to pay smaller share for drug, alcohol programs
JUNEAU (AP) -- The state would pick up a smaller share of the cost of drug and alcohol treatment and prevention programs under a bill that cleared a Senate committee Monday.

Sorlie is first into White Mountain
WHITE MOUNTAIN, Alaska (AP) Norway's Robert Sorlie fought off a spirited challenge from musher Ramy Brooks, retaking the lead early Wednesday in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

Habitat Division employees notified of layoffs, transfers
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The main state agency charged with protecting fish and wildlife habitat will lose 22 jobs under a reorganization plan by Gov. Frank Murkowski.

Bush getting close to winning on Arctic oil drilling
WASHINGTON (AP) Soaring energy prices and the precarious nature of Persian Gulf oil are boosting the chances Congress will approve oil drilling in an Alaska wildlife refuge.

Salvation Army buys Anchorage property to consolidate
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Salvation Army's Alaska Division has bought nearly four acres in Midtown Anchorage where it plans to construct $14 million in buildings to consolidate and expand many of its local services.

Kenai equips police cars with cameras
KENAI (AP) Police cars in Kenai will soon be equipped with a digital video camera, thanks to a $27,000 grant approved by the Alaska Highway Safety Office.

Murkowski plan a blow to southern power line
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Gov. Frank Murkowski's budget would pull out a major financial underpinning of the proposed Anchorage-Kenai electrical intertie by taking back $27 million in interest that's accrued over the past decade on a grant for the project.

Alaska Natives applying to be part of alcoholism study
JUNEAU (AP) A research study is being conducted in Southeast that couples a drug used to decrease alcohol cravings with one that alleviates depression.

National Native News moves to New Mexico
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A nationally-syndicated Native American radio program is ending its 16-year history in Anchorage and moving to New Mexico.

House committee hears motor fuel, tire tax
JUNEAU (AP) A 12-cent per-gallon hike in the state's motor fuel tax may be asking too much without assurances that the money will improve state roads, said the chair of the House Transportation Committee.

Seattle company buys fish plant in Seward
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A Seattle-based company has bought Resurrection Bay Seafoods, a processing plant in Seward owned by Wards Cove Packing Co.

Juneau OKs land deal for Herbert River property
JUNEAU (AP) The Juneau Assembly has approved providing matching funds to put 148 acres of coastal wetlands and wildlife habitat into public hands.

Defense opens case in sockeye salmon collusion trial
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The president of Trident Seafoods testified Monday that no other processor or importer told him what price to pay harvesters in the Bristol Bay sockeye salmon.

Trident goal was to lower prices to fishermen
ANCHORAGE (AP) A processor planned to lower prices to fishermen in 1992 to benefit producers and marketers, according to a document introduced in a lawsuit alleging price-fixing in the Bristol Bay salmon fishery.

National Native News moves to New Mexico
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A nationally-syndicated Native American radio program is ending its 16-year history in Anchorage and moving to New Mexico.

Longevity bonus cut likely to face stiff opposition
JUNEAU (AP) A proposal to save $47.5 million a year by ending the senior citizens' longevity bonus program is likely to face stiff opposition.

Tourism summit held to increase visitors to the Kenai Peninsula
KENAI (AP) About 50 people gathered for a summit last week to discuss ways of making the Kenai Peninsula more of a tourist destination.

Disrupting flight costs Houston man $38,000
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A man from Texas must pay $38,000 to Northwest Airlines for disrupting a flight last November, prompting the crew to divert to Anchorage.

The Great TV Turn Off
For the last few years the birthday of the late great children's author, Dr. Seuss, has been an occasion to get kids excited about reading at Redoubt elementary school, the Kenai Library and the Boys and Girls Club.

Soldotna Chamber honors community members with annual awards
A capacity crowd filled the Soldotna Elks Club last week for the 44th Annual Soldotna Chamber of Commerce Awards Banquet.

$12,500 in cash prizes for the Caring For The Kenai 2003 contest
As the contest deadline for the 13th Annual Caring For the Kenai (CFK) environmental awareness contest sponsored by Unocal Alaska and Agrium draws near, there is good news for high schools and participating students.

Rotary District Governor doesn't miss a Club
Arvind Phukan, originally from India, came to Alaska in 1974 to design the arctic section of the Trans Alaska Pipeline.

Visually challenged dog heads up musher's team
KALTAG -- A casual observer might overlook the milky left eye of the dog leading Frank Sihler's team in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. But the Wasilla rookie wastes no time telling acquaintances that Wiley is 10 years old -- and visually challenged.

Brooks takes race lead from Sorlie
KOYUK, Alaska Ramy Brooks took the lead Tuesday in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race after battling strong headwinds on the way to this coastal town.

Sorlie first out of Unalakleet
UNALAKLEET -- Norwegian musher Robert Sorlie has been running ahead of the competition for days, but he said Monday he's feeling pressure to speed up in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

Gov's proposal not well received
Response to the proposal in Gov. Frank Murkowski's budget presented last week for a visitor user fees was not well received by members of the tourism industry.

Tourism summit ignites search for new identity
Collaboration. Cooperation. Coalition.

Peninsula drug problem growing
Donna Stocks has conceded that, to some degree, she will just have to live with pain that lingers from a nearly 16-year-old automobile accident.

Police trying to find solution to increased use of narcotic
Law enforcement officers agree no simple answer satisfies the question, "Why does the Kenai Penin-sula have only 6 percent of the state's population but 15 percent of the Medicaid prescriptions for OxyContin?"

Dust stirs up air-quality advisory
Recent high winds, combined with unusually dry winter conditions have conspired to shroud the Kenai Peninsula in a dusty haze for the past week.

RV park putting lots up for sale
For more than 15 years it has operated as a recreational vehicle park drawing vacationers to the shores of the Kenai River. However, spurred by requests from longtime tenants who want to buy lots, the owner of River Quest RV Resort now wants to subdivide the land and sell it.

Kenai loads cop cars with cameras
Every Kenai Police Department patrol vehicle soon will be equipped with a digital video camera, thanks to a $27,000 grant approved by the Alaska Highway Safety Office.

Austerman testing Alaska's waters to possibly open fish farming door
HOMER -- Alaska's fisheries will shift from today's rural lifestyle to a business-oriented industry geared toward competing in global markets, the governor's special fisheries adviser, Alan Austerman, said recently.

Karen Conway Hergott
Former Kenai resident Karen Conway Hergott died Thursday, Feb. 20, 2003, at her home in Kihei, Maui, Hawaii She was 47.

Norma B. Carey
Soldotna resident Norma B. Carey died Sunday, March 9, 2003, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna with her family on both sides after a difficult struggle with lung disease complications. She was 75.

William 'Bill' Forrest
Soldotna resident William "Bill" Forrest died Saturday, March 8, 2003, at Providence Hospital in Anchorage. He was 64.

Shalyna Jean-Lynn Patow
Shalyna Jean-Lynn Patow was stillborn Saturday, March 8, 2003, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna.

Cuts to pupil transportation, grants, debt reimbursement are cuts to education
No one understands better than school administrators school superintendents, business officials and principals how difficult it is to balance a budget, and we admire Gov. Frank Murkowski for his courage to propose drastic reductions in state spending.

Letters to the Editor
More drift-only days on Kenai also would benefit salmon stocks Recommendations favor nonresidents over locals

North Korea may pose more danger than Saddam does What others say
Iraq masks a second emerging crisis, no less dangerous, perhaps even more: North Korea.

Letters to the Editor
Proposals would give lobbyists even more influence in JuneauAlaska elected mushroom farmer; now we will reap what we plantedPeace marchers not being honest in their protests against war

Read my lips, governorBake sale is sweet success

Advisory panel not out to bash guides; public says there are too many guides
There have been numerous comments made recently regarding the early run of kings. As with every other highly charged issue regarding our fisheries, some of the comments are based on agendas, personal feelings or experience; others are based on socio-economic or biologic data; and some are based on all of these.

Permanent fund should be used to help pay for state government
Signs of real political courage are beginning to emerge in Juneau.

Many contribute to success of career-technical conference Soldotna After the Bell program appreciates areas generosity National Barrel Horse Association says thanks for support during 2002

Around the Peninsula
Sled dog association gathering slated Steering committee meets Thursday CPCS board to meet KPC to present comedy showcase Scholarship program set for Saturday Genealogy class planned Nikiski dance concert slated Health center now taking appointments

Around the Peninsula
Clothes Closet open, donations neededTOTE rep to speak at Soldotna chamberPhotographers guild plans meetingEra rep to speak at Kenai chamberDOT to discuss bridge projectHistorical Society to discuss fishingGardeners plan lecture seriesPlanned Parenthood seeks nominations

Students of Month
The following students wereamed February Students of the Month at Kenai Middle School:

Around the district schools
Aurora Borealis Charter Kalifornsky Beach Elementary Montessori Charter Mountain View Elementary Redoubt Elementary Soldotna Elementary Tustumena Elementary Connections IDEA Kenai Middle School Soldotna Middle School Kenai Central High Nikiski Middle-Senior High Ninilchik Skyview High Soldotna High Cook Inlet Academy Grace Lutheran Wings Christian Academy Peninsula Grace Preschool

Around the District
Schools close next week for spring break District offers scholarships

School menus for this week

Building skills
T.C. Dyer works with advisor Doug Gordon during the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District's Career and Technical Student Orgnaization conference Feb. 28 at Kenai Peninsula College.

Fourth-grade researchers collect data for NASA
They don't have white lab coats, and they're not rocket scientists.

Comedy Showcase: Big-time performer heads to peninsula
The KPC Showcase series will present its first-ever comedy show at 8 p.m. Friday in the Brockel Building. Tickets are $5 for all students and $10 general admission and a

Senior Menus
What's on the menu for our area seniors

Senior Briefs
What activities are available for our area seniors

New Web site launched to help senior citizens access drug programs
WASHINGTON (AP) -- A new Internet-based program has been launched to help the elderly more easily identify programs that will save them money on prescription drugs.

Senators Bonk Boston, keep top spot in NHL
OTTAWA Radek Bonk scored 28 seconds into overtime as the Ottawa Senators held onto their lead atop the NHL standings with a 4-3 victory over the Boston Bruins on Tuesday night.

CIA's Peterson makes the most of his abilities
Looks can be deceiving. Just take a glance at the long list of opponents the Cook Inlet Academy boys high school basketball team has surprised this season.

Villanova snaps Huskies winning streak at 70 games
PISCATAWAY, N.J. On the eve of the NCAA tournament, defending national champion Connecticut suddenly seems vulnerable.

Alabama, Indiana, Texas Tech on NCAA tournament bubble
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Alabama was ranked No. 1 briefly, Indiana reached last year's national title game, and Texas Tech coach Bob Knight always has his teams ready when it matters.

Sports Briefs
Homer sweeps SkyviewSeward wins two over HoustonWells agrees to $100,000 fine for book

NHL trade deadline spurs deals
In the final 24 hours before the NHL trade deadline, all 30 teams got into the act, making it one of the busiest dealing days in league history.

Maybe LeBron James has the right idea
Need a quick A? Enroll in Coaching Principles and Strategies of Basketball'' at the University of Georgia no attendance required.

New England signs prize free agent Colvin
For once, the Washington Redskins didn't make the biggest news in free agency.

Jordans wizardry beats out McGradys magic
WASHINGTON Tracy McGrady outscored Michael Jordan 43-23 in their final regular season matchup. The victory, however, went to Jordan.

Hoch finishes off Furyk at Doral
MIAMI -- One clutch putt made Scott Hoch look smart for waiting overnight to continue his playoff.

Photo feature: Shadow of things to come
A skateboarder casts a shadow last weekend in Soldotna on a ramp at the city's skateboard park. The facility was still closed for the season but boarders were planning on meeting with the city to get it opened again.

Team Alaska skiers win Junior Olympic titles
Team Alaska's Katie Ronsse and Brett Broda both won sprint titles Monday as the 2003 Junior Olympics commenced at Birch Hill in Fairbanks.

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