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Tuesday, March 19, 2002

World Ice Art bring lights down to Earth
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Jill Mulholland can't stop raving about the lights in Fairbanks -- but unlike most winter visitors, she's not referring to the dancing green ones overhead.

March 15, 2002 The Peninsula Clarion says Alaskans know the score on budget gap
Legislators who continue to think that Alaskans don't believe the state budget crisis is real might have been surprised by the testimony received by the House Finance Committee this week on its proposed $2.2 billion operating budget.

House leaders back away from eliminating subsistence division
JUNEAU (AP) -- House Republican leaders backed away from a plan to eliminate the state office that oversees subsistence after outcry from Alaskans offended by the proposed cut.

Galena man accused of assaulting witness in brother's felony case
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A Galena man was arrested over the weekend for allegedly assaulting a witness in his brother's felony case.

Alaska SeaLife Center's future is looking brighter
SEWARD (AP) -- The future of the Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward is looking up, according to Tylan Schrock, the center's executive director.

Out with the old, in with the new, soldiers don black berets
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Soldiers at Fort Wainwright have a new look.

Barrow seal hunters rescued from sea ice
BARROW (AP) -- Rescuers used helicopters to pluck 18 seal hunters from islands of sea ice that broke away in the Arctic Ocean offshore from Barrow Sunday afternoon.

Stranded couple rescued near Manokotak
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Searchers rescued a Twin Hills couple who were left stranded when their snowmachine broke down on a fishing trip.

March 14, 2002 Alaska Newspapers Inc. calls for more school funding, not budget cuts
The closing of McQueen School in Kivalina is a stark example of why the Legislature should consider raising new revenue through taxes instead of bringing down the budget ax to close the $865 million budget deficit.

Paintball shooters hit five Anchorage pedestrians
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A group of people drove around parts of north Anchorage shooting green paintballs at pedestrians from a white Ford Explorer with tinted windows, police said.

Anchorage snowstorm sends jumbo cargo jets to Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Anchorage's record snowstorm forced 18 wide-body cargo planes to divert to Fairbanks International Airport.

Wolf-hybrid credited with saving Fairbanks family in house fire
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A Rottweiler-wolf hybrid is credited with saving a family of five when a fire broke out in their Fairbanks home over the weekend.

Lack of volunteers forces Alaskaland museum to close
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The African-American Community Museum at Alaskaland won't be open this summer because the museum has too few volunteers.

Cook tackles armed robber in Fairbanks lounge
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The Oasis Restaurant and Lounge can put a sign up in its window, ''Beware of Cook,'' after a cook named Cook nabbed an armed robber who interrupted his pool game early Sunday morning.

Last Iditarod musher crosses Nome finish in record time
NOME (AP) -- The winner of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race reached Nome in record time. And so did the last musher to cross the finish line.

UA adjuncts approve contact
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Members of the union representing University of Alaska adjuncts have ratified a contract that calls for a 10 percent pay increase over three years.

Elmendorf officials say no further cleanup needed at contamination site
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- No new monitoring is planned for a contamination cleanup site at Elmendorf Air Force Base, a military spokeswoman said.

Paintball shooters hit five Anchorage pedestrians
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A group of people drove around parts of north Anchorage shooting green paintballs at pedestrians from a white Ford Explorer with tinted windows, police said.

March 11, 2002 The Anchorage Daily News calls House budget cutting shortsighted and wrong
House Speaker Brian Porter and Finance Committee Co-chair Eldon Mulder decided earlier this month that delaying a fiscal plan in order to work on the budget will actually help in the long run. Rep. Mulder dictated deep cuts for 15 of the 18 major agencies in the budget. The thinking goes something like this: Once people see the Legislature is serious about cuts, and see how painful they are, the public will be more willing to support a fiscal plan that ends the free ride Alaska has enjoyed for two decades.

House passes bare bones $2.2 billion spending plan
JUNEAU (AP) -- A $2.2 billion spending plan that makes deep cuts of many state services passed the House of Representatives on Monday, clearing the way for tax talks.

March 13, 2002 The Voice of the Times says Legislators' detractors are playing politics
Why do the Republican legislative majority's most vocal foes pretend they cannot begin to fathom why state spending should be reined in before lawmakers set about imposing new taxes or using money from the Permanent Fund to help fund government?

Ogan remains in critical condition after heart attack
JUNEAU (AP) -- The House of Representatives held a moment of silent prayer on Monday for Rep. Scott Ogan who remained in stable but critical condition after suffering a heart attack over the weekend.

Ogan in critical condition after heart attack
JUNEAU (AP) -- Rep. Scott Ogan remained in critical condition Monday morning after suffering a serious heart attack over the weekend at his Palmer home.

Kivalina school reopened Monday
KIVALINA (AP) -- Kivalina's only school reopened Monday, more than two weeks after the school was closed because staff complained that they were being physically and verbally harassed.

Anchorage schools closed as city tackles record snow
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Schools were closed in Anchorage Monday as residents tried to dig out from under a record snowfall over the weekend.

Tenakee Springs says no to VPSO contract
JUNEAU (AP) -- Tenakee Springs no longer has local law enforcement because the city could not reach an agreement for a new contract with the Tlingit-Haida Central Councils Village Public Safety Officer program.

Slow drivers could face higher fines
JUNEAU (AP) -- Driving too slowly could cost more than driving too fast under a bill that passed the state Senate on Monday.

Vidro, Leiter return to mound for spring fling
Jose Vidro came back for Montreal and Al Leiter took the mound again for the New York Mets. Both stars professed themselves ready for opening day.

Keeping an eye on your bone density
As health consciousness increases on the Kenai Peninsula more people are becoming involved with their personal health care and more services are becoming available.

Teachers rally in support of education
As the mercury hovered near zero and many Peninsula residents enjoyed the perfect conditions for outdoor winter activities under sunny skies, a group of several hundred teachers, their families and supporters, formed ranks along Binkley Street in Soldotna.

Outdoors
Wow is the only word that I can use to describe the past two months of my life here in Alaska. On January 12th I exercised one of the rights of being an Alaskan by performing the wedding ceremony for two dear friends of mine Steve Dambacher and Heidi Erickson.

Career & Technical competition draws high school students to KPC
Some 75 Kenai Peninsula Borough School District (KPBSD) students, 15 advisors and 15 community volunteers, judges and speakers, converged upon Kenai Peninsula College (KPC) recently for the District wide Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO, competition and conference.

Youth Restoration Corps gears up for summer 2002
Last summer the Youth Restoration Corps (YRC) in cooperation with the Young Marines brought some 80 young people from all over America to Alaska to undertake restoration projects on the Kenai Peninsula. According to Kelly Wolf, YRC Executive

Visitors to Village Fair receive Therapeutic Touch
With over 82 participants at this year's Health Fair, there were many modern as well as ancient techniques for staying healthy on display.

KPB Assembly honors Alaska Junior Miss Katie Lockwood
Each year more than 5,000 high school senior girls vie for generous scholarships by participating in America's Junior Miss program.

Last Iditarod musher crosses Nome finish in record time
NOME (AP) -- The winner of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race reached Nome in record time. And so did the last musher to cross the finish line.

Subsistence division avoids elimination
JUNEAU (AP) -- House Republican leaders backed away from a plan to eliminate the state office that oversees subsistence after outcry from Alaskans offended by the proposed cut.

Slow drivers could pay more
JUNEAU -- Driving too slowly could cost more than driving too fast under a bill that passed the state Senate on Monday.

House passes fish bill
Too many boats and too few salmon selling for depressed prices have made life tough on the high seas for Alaska fishers. However, a bill passed Friday by the Alaska House may improve things a bit if the Senate agrees.

Thin spending plan slips through House
JUNEAU -- A $2.2 billion spending plan that makes deep cuts of many state services passed the House of Representatives on Monday, clearing the way for tax talks.

Martin wins at Carolina
DARLINGTON, S.C. -- For the first time in years, Sterling Marlin starts every race thinking he can win. Even from the last starting spot in the field.

Budget cuts could mean fewer troopers
Roughly 32,000 residents of the Kenai Peninsula living outside city limits go to sleep each night relying on the Alaska State Troopers for protection. But the man charged with ensuring their safety says he has barely half the troopers he needs to do the job. Worse, he soon may lose still more of his force.

Tests show no evidence of anthrax from hospital
No hazardous substance was found on a hospital business envelope sent for testing on March 12, according to reports from the Alaska State Troopers Criminal Investigative Bureau and the state of Alaska Office of Epidemiology.

Ogan remains in critical condition after heart attack
JUNEAU (AP) -- The House of Representatives held a moment of silent prayer on Monday for Rep. Scott Ogan who remained in stable but critical condition after suffering a heart attack over the weekend.

Speaker brings inspirational message to peninsula youths
A water bottle is taped to the corner of a table in the Sterling Elementary School gym. A small ball of paper and tape balances on the mouth of the bottle.

Homer dock getting needed face-lift
For the better part of four decades, the city of Homer's prime link to the sea has been a timber dock built by the U.S. Corps of Engineers after the 1964 earthquake.

SeaLife Center outlook brightens
The Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward has survived some rough seas, but now, for the first time, it looks like smooth sailing lies ahead.

Record snowfall reported in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE -- Anchorage was buried under a record snowfall Sunday that kept most people indoors, while city crews hustled to clear roads and police answered a barrage of calls from motorists in ditches.

Kyle Frederick Braun
Kyle Frederick Braun died in his mother's arms Sunday, March 17, 2002, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. Kyle died at 7:09 a.m., the same hour, minute and place where he was born just 47 days earlier.

Keith 'Skeeter' Harrsch
Kenai resident Keith "Skeeter" Harrsch died in the arms of his wife, Judell, and sister, Lou, Friday, March 15, 2002, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. He was 47.

First step of House budget proposal is holding line on state spending
The continuing fiscal gap between state spending and income gets a lot of attention in Alaska these days, and nowhere more so than in the Alaska Legislature. As the body responsible for passing a balanced budget, our days and nights have been consumed with the gap, and the corresponding need for a long-range budget plan.

Applause
Immunizations promoted by 4 area organizations

It's important for all Alaskans to learn about budget crisis
A debate that will frame the short- and long-term financial future of Alaska is raging in Juneau. It should be raging in every household as well.

Children are best reason new taxes should be approved
The closing of McQueen School in Kivalina is a stark example of why the Legislature should consider raising new revenue through taxes instead of bringing down the budget ax to close the $865 million budget deficit.

Alaska's fishing industry is facing hard truths, shaking off its complacency
Since Rep. Ken Lancaster, R-Soldotna, spoke about our state's financial situation in a recent legislative article, I would like to take this opportunity to address our fisheries resource issues by offering one word: podsnap.

Letters to the Editor
Budget cuts hurt some, diminish quality of life for all AlaskansFish board process not conducive to participation by individuals

Births
Amy and Dave McDonald of SoldotnaLori B. and James C. SpinkaCassandra and Matthew Rankin

Around the Peninsula
Public health nurse visits villageIndependent blind group meets tonightDrilling company president to speakBorough capital projects topic at chamberDisabled American Veterans meeting ThursdayKDLL board to meetVeterans organization to hold electionsKenai Peninsula Soccer Club to gatherRefuge offering Youth Conservation Corps jobsRepublican women to host SenatorWRCC community groups announced

Iditathon walker hits halfway mark
Racing the Iditarod Trail being pulled behind a team of dogs is considered to be one of the toughest, wildest, wilderness challenges around.

Photo feature: Green shows through despite snowy day
Yukon Gold Sweet Potato Queens Tammy Sue, Tammi Monet, Tammy Morene and Tammy Jo Bob toss necklaces and candy to the crowd Sunday during the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce's St. Patrick's Day parade.

Club News
Elks table tennis tournament winners announced

Caring for kinders
Jennifer Beckmann, executive assistant for Central Area Rural Transit System (CARTS), accepts a check last Tuesday from Dr. Henry Krull, orthopedic surgeon in Soldotna and father of a kindergartner.

Community News
Spenard Builders Supply offers scholarshipSenate internships open to high school seniorsHost families needed for exchange studentsHomer Community School adds classes

Community Schools
Soldotna community classes do not meet this week, Monday through Sunday, due to spring break. The following two classes are exceptions

Around the Peninsula
Mediation topic of Soldotna chamber meetingDrilling company president to speakLeague of Women Voters sponsors forumBenefit dinner, auction scheduledWomen's resource center seeks volunteersTax assistance available by appointment

Soldotna postal carrier clocks 30 years
Richard Huddleston is celebrating 30 years as a U.S. Postal Service employee. He currently works at the Soldotna Post Office.

Peninsula People
Area students named to deans' listsKenai woman graduates from college with family helpKenai woman graduates in TexasSeward man enlists in ArmyPeninsula athletes win at Special Olympics

Ask a Trooper
Question: I have a neighbor who bought a snowmachine from another guy who probably stole it. When he showed it to me he laughed about what a good deal he got on it. When I suggested it was probably stolen, he said he couldn't be charged because he bought it from someone else. Is he breaking the law?

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

Technology promises easier 'Net navigation for seniors
NEW YORK -- One of the biggest problems 79-year-old Al Berger has tackled while teaching fellow seniors how to use the Internet is getting them to sit through his lessons.

Senior Briefs
What activities are available for our area seniors

Photo feature: Last run?
Josh Engholm carves air Sunday at Karen Street Recreation Area in Soldotna. The weekend's snow helped to freshen winter activities. However, the sun returned Monday, melting the new snowfall with temperatures touching the 40s.

Rangers pick up superstar scorer Pavel Bure from Florida
NEW YORK -- The New York Rangers acquired forward Pavel Bure in a trade with the Florida Panthers on Monday night.

Sports Briefs
Little says Martinez, Garciaparra, Varitek readyNFL schedule could have late-season TV switchesRichardson, university president meetNaismith Awards announcedBlank moves closer to making Wolf an offer

Flyers tie due to Lightning-quick comeback
PHILADELPHIA -- Sheldon Keefe scored with 1:36 left in the third period to complete Tampa Bay's three-goal comeback Monday night in the Lightning's 3-3 tie with the Philadelphia Flyers on Monday night.

PGA loses its 'Poison'
Paul Runyan, the former PGA champion known as ''Little Poison'' for beating the biggest names in golf with his crafty short game, died Sunday morning after a short bout with pneumonia. He was 93.

UT takes Irish's lucky charm
Tennessee has much more experience than Notre Dame in the role of defending women's national champion.

Monarchs reach royal 16
Old Dominion was playing for both respect and a berth in the NCAA tournament's round of 16. The Lady Monarchs got both.

Washington shoots Trojans' lights out, advance to face Oregon
SEATTLE -- Giuliana Mendiola is sure the Washington Huskies will shoot just as brilliantly in three days as they did Sunday against Southern California.

Sports Briefs
CIA boys defeat CCS CIA boys 58, CCS 30

Montgomery shows it's size of heart that matters
In the case of Kenai Central senior Jamie Montgomery, who says she's 5-foot-4 "on a good day," it's the size of the heart, and not the size of the body, that matters.

Upsets abound, Salukis beat Georgia
Never count out UCLA in the NCAA tournament. Suddenly, the same could be said for Southern Illinois.

Hurdler now leaps problems
His track career long over, Edwin Moses is hurdling through life, leaping barriers of poverty, crime, drugs, disease and war.

Bay Hill Invitate no match for Tiger
ORLANDO, Fla. -- Tiger Woods began his march to the Masters with his first victory of the year, a four-shot margin at the Bay Hill Invitational on Sunday that was secured by Phil Mickelson's blunders on the closing holes.

Blazers remain hot by topping Celtics
BOSTON -- Shawn Kemp had 12 points and 11 rebounds in his second game subbing for the suspended Dale Davis and Portland beat Boston 100-91 Monday night to win for the 15th time in 16 games.

Raptors can't find win in Sacramento
TORONTO -- Chris Webber had 31 points and 15 rebounds, and Mike Bibby scored 18 of his 22 points in the second half to lead the Sacramento Kings to a 116-113 victory Sunday over the hapless Toronto Raptors.

Red Wings cruise past slumping Rangers
NEW YORK -- Darren McCarty's goal with 2:08 left in regulation was the game-winner as the Detroit Red Wings beat the slumping New York Rangers 5-3 on Sunday.

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