Friday, April 4, 2003

Longevity bonus, worker tax bills clear committee
JUNEAU (AP) Legislation to impose a $100 tax on workers and end the state's senior citizen longevity bonus program cleared the Senate State Affairs Committee on Thursday.

Murkowski takes helicopters out of mix in McGrath
JUNEAU (AP) -- Gov. Frank Murkowski won't allow helicopters or state employees to kill wolves as part of a predator control program around McGrath.

Two suspected methamphetamine labs discovered
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Suspected methamphetamine labs were found in two Fairbanks homes this week, Alaska State Troopers said.

Goshawks claim APU nesting site
ANCHORAGE (AP) Alaska Pacific University officials are asking people to stay away from a stretch of woods claimed by two aggressive Northern goshawks.

Murkowski outlines tough on crime stance
JUNEAU (AP) Gov. Frank Murkowski outlined a crime package on Thursday that calls for fewer plea bargains for child predators, a crackdown on bootleggers, and tightening the state's self-defense laws.

Alaska seafood closer to organic label
ANCHORAGE (AP) Alaska seafood may soon have a new label: organic.

Bill would eliminate art funding requirement
JUNEAU (AP) State buildings would feature more spartan decor under a bill proposed by Rep. Bill Stoltze.

Flags lowered in memory of Kenai judge
ANCHORAGE (AP) State flags were lowered Friday in memory of Kenai Superior Court Judge Jonathan Link. Flags will remain at half-staff throughout the weekend.

House creates committee to tackle fiscal issues
JUNEAU (AP) -- A special House Ways and Means Committee will take on legislation to address the state's chronic budget shortfalls, House leaders said Wednesday.

Geophysical Institute finds errant rocket
FAIRBANKS (AP) An errant rocket that malfunctioned during a recent launch has been found, according to officials with the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute.

Witnesses testify in baby murder trial
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- Josh Rowden was affectionate and caring with the infant boy he is accused of killing, according to people who testified at the Ketchikan teenager's murder trial this week.

Kohring wants to gives tax decision to voters
JUNEAU (AP) -- Rep. Vic Kohring wants to take the power to tax away from the Legislature and give it to the voters.

Godfrey files claim against shooters estate
ANCHORAGE (AP) The wife of former state Public Safety Commissioner Glenn Godfrey wants $2 million from the estate of the woman who shot her husband to death and seriously wounded her last summer.

Study of offshore drilling would be costly, Canadian official says
VANCOUVER (AP) -- It could cost $100 million (Canadian) or more to study the impact of lifting an offshore oil-drilling moratorium on Canada's Pacific Coast near Alaska, Canadian Environment Minister David Anderson said Wednesday.

Resolutions protest increasing federal
JUNEAU (AP) Democrat legislators have introduced identical resolutions expressing concern over the federal Patriot Act toward civil liberties.

Ice Classic ticket deadline approaches
FAIRBANKS (AP) Midnight Saturday is the deadline to buy tickets for the Nenana Ice Classic, the annual betting game where contestants try to guess the exact time the ice on the Tanana River at Nenana will break up.

Haines-area village corporation holds off on dividends
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A Southeast village corporation will not issue dividends until the stock market recovers, according to a board member.

Man pleads innocent in child sex abuse case
KENAI (AP) A 66-year-old Anchor Point man has pleaded innocent to charges that he sexually abused three young children.

Kenai Peninsula teachers ratify contract
KENAI (AP) -- Teachers and support employees in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District have ratified new contracts.

Challenger Center may face money crunch
KENAI (AP) The Challenger Learning Center of Alaska in Kenai could run short of operating funds in just a few months as grant monies dry up, according to Kenai Mayor John Williams, a member of the center's board.

Third trial of man accused of killing father begins
JUNEAU (AP) -- The third trial of 20-year-old Jose M. ''Che'' Mateu got under way Tuesday with jury selection in the state capital after two juries in Ketchikan both deadlocked on first-degree murder charges filed against Mateau in the killing of his father.

Man pleads in Anchorage parking garage killing
ANCHORAGE (AP) An Anchorage man accused of killing another man during a drug deal last October has pleaded guilty after reaching a deal with federal prosecutors.

State proposes regulations on logging herbicides
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The state is proposing regulations that would allow a Native-owned logging company to spray alder-killing herbicides on clear-cuts to help speed the reforestation cedar and spruce -- cash crops.

Juneau hospital expansion plan hits snag
JUNEAU (AP) City officials are pondering what to do after the sole bid for a long-planned expansion and renovation at Bartlett Regional Hospital came in $11 million over budget.

Opening statements presented in Mateu murder trial
JUNEAU (AP) -- Prosecutors and defense attorneys have presented strikingly different portrayals of the relationship between Jose ''Che'' Mateu and his father, Jose R. Mateu, the man he is accused of killing.

Legislators want food lab in seafood plant
KENAI (AP) Some state legislators want to house the state's food safety laboratory, now in Palmer, in an Anchorage seafood processing plant.

Body found in Tenakee missing woman's, residents say
JUNEAU (AP) -- Though officials on Wednesday would not confirm the identity of a body found partly buried in Tenakee Springs Tuesday, friends and family of a 19-year-old Juneau woman who disappeared March 26 told the Juneau Empire it is her body.

These seats are Monstrously good
Kenmore Square -- and its landmark Citgo sign -- is at my back, the nightclubs of Landsdowne Street are below, the Boston skyline is off in the distance. On the right, I would almost be able to touch the left-field foul pole that welcomed Carlton Fisk's famous homer into history.

A-Rod's 300th not enough for Texas
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Alex Rodriguez became the youngest player to hit 300 homers, but the Anaheim Angels beat the Rangers 11-5 Wednesday behind home runs from Troy Glaus, Brad Fullmer and Darin Erstad.

Brown impressive in Dodgers win
PHOENIX -- Kevin Brown, in a performance that bodes well for the Los Angeles Dodgers, shut down the Arizona Diamondbacks on three hits in six-plus innings of a 5-0 victory Wednesday night.

Twins start season with sweep of Tigers
DETROIT Kyle Lohse allowed two hits in eight innings as the Minnesota Twins beat the Detroit Tigers 3-0 Thursday to complete an opening three-game sweep.

Sosa belts Cubs past Mets
NEW YORK Sammy Sosa drove in three runs with a pair of singles and left Shea Stadium still looking for his 500th career homer as the Chicago Cubs beat the New York Mets 6-3 Thursday.

Its not just about money
NEW YORK (AP) In times of uncertainty or crisis, Americans tend to pull back and take stock of their lives. That seems to be happening now.

Watercooler
LOOMING UNEMPLOYMENT: Job security is Topic A among many American workers, with a quarter of workers in a survey saying they could lose their job this year. That was up from 20 percent in the same survey in December.

Boomers urged to assign power of attorney
NEW YORK (AP) At age 42, Mark Lemont is looking forward to a long, healthy life with his wife and daughter.

10 tips to help avoid tax-season problems
WASHINGTON -- For taxpayers looking for ways to avoid the last-minute rush for preparing and filing tax returns, the Internal Revenue Service offers these tips:

What about earnings for war-focused investors?
NEW YORK (AP) Americans so obsessed with the war in Iraq should beware of companies trying to use it to camouflage bad news at home.

Marathon to expand Ninilchik Unit
Marathon Oil Company has filed an application with the Alaska Division of Oil and Gas to dissolve an oil and gas production area known as the Falls Creek Unit a few miles south of Clam Gulch and add its 630 acres to the much larger Ninilchik Unit that completely surrounds it.

Photo: In Jeopardy
Marleny Villalobo, left, Karina Soriano and Gissela Rivera, right, study cosmetology at the Marshall Academy in Marshall High School in Fall

Business Briefs
Process industry to hold forumNonprofit workshop scheduledUSDA home loan limits raised

College to become school of fish
Parents and spouses: Don't be surprised if a child or significant other starts talking excitedly about spending a chunk of this summer in school.

Taking stock
The Fishing Hole on the Homer Spit is one of the most unique fisheries available to anglers in Alaska, but the salmon in this lagoon come with a price -- $25,000 to be exact.

Photo feature: Summer in winter
Bob Summer has a view of Jean Lake and the Kenai Mountains as he descends Skyline Trail near Cooper Landing recently. The trail is mostly hard-packed snow with a few icy areas.

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

Eddie Griffin finds his material in his funky, troubled family
LOS ANGELES -- When Eddie Griffin's mother wanted to punish his misbehavior, she hit him with a switch. When he hit her back, she chased him with a car.

Weekend packed with classical music
Classical music fans can get their fix of Beethoven, Bach, Dvorak, Liszt and other great pieces of music at three live performances this weekend.

In Denali book, climber's pain is readers' gain
Extreme physical discomfort, fear of imminent death and enormous expense are part and parcel of serious mountaineering. And yet people do it for "fun."

'Phone Booth' should have been hung up
Guy held captive in a phone booth by a sniper. As a 10-word Hollywood pitch, it sounds like a cool and novel scenario.

'Urban Cowboy' survives Broadway
NEW YORK -- Forget mechanical bulls.

For or against war, its time to get behind nations leaders
Whether you support the war in Iraq or oppose it, the time for debate is past. The battle is joined. It is now time to support our leadership to do our small part to help end this war as soon as possible.

War with Iraq is necessary to ensure global stability
As we all know, the current war with Iraq is a very controversial

Governor Murkowski is committed to balancing states budget
Governor Murkowski was repeatedly encouraged, during the campaign, to reduce government spending. He promised to leave the permanent fund alo

Tactics of fear and hate not the right way to gain respect
The opinion page article you printed March 31 from the The Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville, which recommends having a clear perception of the world around you and recommends Fox News for subjectivity, endorsed the

Soldiers make sacrifices to fight for the freedom of others
We have free men and women fighting for the freedom of a people. We live in uncertain times in a nation looking for answers to questions.

Kenai resident reflects on new life in the 'Last Frontier'
Summer is coming. That means tourist season -- more traffic, more people taking photos of the moose and caribou. And the grocery stores will fill up with folks who can't figure out which aisle the cookies are in.

Legislators continue to ignore public by raiding permanent fund
The representatives that we elected should represent the will of the people. 83 percent of the people of Alaska

Peace demonstrators latest in long history of American dissent
A few words about the demonstrations and candlelight vigils for peace in Soldotna...

Points Leaders
1. Matt Kenseth 1,0902. Kurt Busch 9353. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 924

Big-name drivers rally around Vickers after NASCAR rules against him
CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Brian Vickers was just another new kid in the Busch Series a week ago. Then he had an almost-certain victory taken from him and the list of big-name drivers rallied around him.

Money Leaders
1. Michael Waltrip $1,999,3562. Kurt Busch 1,717,2303. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 1,416,235

NASCAR explains decisions
TALLADEGA, Ala. -- NASCAR admitted it made a mistake Sunday during the Winston Cup Series race in al lowing Kurt Busch and Ricky Rudd to get their lap back just before a caution period.

Newsmaker: Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. can become the first driver to win four consecutive races at the Talladega Superspeedway with a victory in Sunday's Aaron's 499.

NASCAR studies effects of ephedra, carbon monoxide
TALLADEGA, Ala. -- A sport that puts the name of a cigarette and beer company on its letterhead may draw the line with the dietary supplement ephedra.

Race Schedule
February 16 to November 16, 2003

This week's race: Aaron's 499
Where and when

Gas, diesel may get tax break
A measure introduced at Tuesday's Kenai Peninsula Bor-ough Assembly meeting seeks to exempt a portion of gasoline and diesel fuels from the borough sales tax.

Challenger Center falls short on funds
The Challenger Learning Center of Alaska in Kenai could be running short of operating funds in a matter of a few months as grant monies on which it depends so heavily dry up, Kenai Mayor John Williams told the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly on Tuesday.

ILC supporters rally against budget cuts
A move to eliminate state grants to the Centers for Independent Living has prompted agency officials to schedule public rallies against the cuts at noon today in Soldotna and Homer.

Anchor Point man arraigned for sexual abuse
A 66-year-old Anchor Point man pleaded not guilty in Kenai Superior Court on Tuesday to 11 counts of sexual abuse of minors.

Horn to leave center, head up CIRCAC
The Challenger Learning Center of Alaska will lose its director, Steve Horn, after next week.

Wagoner pushes to move state safety lab from Palmer to Anchorage
A bipartisan group of Alaska senators wants to move the state's food safety laboratory from Palmer to Anchorage and put it inside the building now occupied by Alaska Seafood International rather than build a whole new laboratory facility.

Council deadlocks in voting to appoint new member
The Kenai City Council proved why it is necessary to have seven members instead of six at its Wednesday meeting when it deadlocked in a vote to appoint a new member.

CPGH looks to grow after another year in the red
Growth is something David Gilbreath said he hoped to nurture during his tenure at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna.

Jared Ross Galloway
Lifelong Kasilof resident Jared Ross Galloway died Tuesday, April 1, 2003, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. He was 23.

Marcia M. Turpin
Soldotna resident Marcia M. Turpin died Tuesday, April 1, 2003, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. She was 81.

Thelma Isaacs
There will be a visitation service for former Kenai Peninsula resident Thelma Isaacs at 2 p.m. Sunday at the Anchorage Funeral Home at 1800 Dare Ave.

Oilers alumni start MLB season strong
With Major League Baseball's 2003 season just under way, two former Oilers have started the season off with noteworthy performances.

Applause
Local business instrumental in KPC student's pursuit of educationNikiski dance performance truly a sight to beholdRocket project gets big boost from community support

Boycott of German, French goods foolish
A boycott of French and German goods has gathered pace in the United States -- a consequence of those countries' continued resistance to the war in Iraq -- but such a movement is economically unsound and an overreaction.

Disagreement over Iraq will hurt world economy
U.S. antagonism with France and Germany over the war on Iraq is beginning to adversely affect global economic talks.

Kenai Superior Court Judge Jonathan H. Jon Link Jan. 22, 1944 - March 25, 2003 What others say
Maybe it was his collection of neck

Refuge mapmaker called on to aid in Columbia shuttle recovery effort
Soon after the Columbia space shuttle disaster in February, I received an e-mail

Around the Peninsula
July 4 planning meeting today Gardeners to host garden art workshop Kenaitze Head Start to hold garage sale Pop Warner cheerleading sign-ups planned KWF art show reception planned Tack swap slated Oyster benefit planned Ninilchik fair banquet planned

Around the Peninsula
Bear baiting clinic slatedTeen Center plans activitiesHistorical society meeting plannedCommunity council to meetLittle League registration date nearsHealthy communities to meetHospital service area board to meet

Christian groups eager to help in Iraq, but critics wary their aim is conversion
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) In the aftermath of war, Iraq is expected to face a massive humanitarian crisis, with hunger, homelessness and disease threatening the nation's 24 million people.

Massachusetts lawyer challenges use of churches as polling places
FRAMINGHAM, Mass. (AP) A Jewish lawyer said he will sue Framingham in federal court because it holds elections in religious buildings, which he considers a violation of church-state separation.

Same-sex blessings dispute splits two Anglican Church of Canada bishops
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) Debate over same-sex blessing rituals, which have caused intense debate in the Anglican Church of Canada, has grown more bitter with a confrontation between two bishops.

Just war theory to a childs mind
"But daddy, why do we have to go to war?"

United Methodist Church will again debate homosexuality at 2004 conference
WASHINGTON (AP) The United Methodist Church's 2004 General Conference will take up the debate over whether to change its stand against homosexual conduct, despite heavy support for existing policy at the last gathering in 2000.

Islamic court opens in Indonesias troubled Aceh province
BANDA ACEH, Indonesia (AP) Thousands of Muslims celebrated the opening of Indonesia's first Islamic court, which will prosecute violators of religious law (Shariah) in troubled Aceh province.

Zoroastrians begin work on temple for their ancient faith in Virginia
VIENNA, Va. (AP) One of the world's oldest religions is establishing a new, American temple for the faith outside the nation's capital, the Zoroastrian Center and Darb-e-Mehr.

U.S. Catholic-Episcopal talks propose that bishops join each others meetings
WASHINGTON (AP) A panel of U.S. Roman Catholic and Episcopal Church delegates proposed Tuesday that bishops from the two denominations attend each others' official meetings to foster Christian unity.

Church Briefs
Conference studies Genesis Native fellowship meets tonight Bahais host peace devotions Sale to aid African hunger mission Passover seder presented Church celebrates holy week Friendship closet open Healing Rooms open Religious poetry solicited Christian group holds contest Writers sought for faith anthology

Iverson's double-double leads 76ers past Bulls
PHILADELPHIA -- Allen Iverson had 24 points and a season-high 12 assists, leading the Philadelphia 76ers to a 108-101 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday night.

Smith earns closer role at New Mexico State
Mike Smith, a 1999 graduate of Skyview High School, is finishing up his college baseball career as the closer for the NCAA Division I New Mexico State Aggies.

Lemieux propels Penguins to victory
PITTSBURGH -- Mario Lemieux had two assists in what may have been his final NHL game and the Pittsburgh Penguins rallied for two goals in the closing minutes to beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 on Wednesday night.

Williams, Boeheim get another shot
NEW ORLEANS -- Roy Williams thinks Kansas vs. Syracuse for the national title has a nice ring to it.

Sports Briefs
Hutchison earns All-American honorsCongress asks baseball for documents on ephedraBurk wants judge to override sheriff's ruling

St. John's tops Georgetown for NIT championships
NEW YORK Marcus Hatten helped St. John's win a championship. And the Red Storm fans helped him celebrate.

Abdur-Rahim ruins Jordans finale in Atlanta
ATLANTA Michael Jordan played another farewell game in Atlanta. This time, he was upstaged by Shareef Abdur-Rahim.

Senators rule Eastern Conference
WASHINGTON The Ottawa Senators clinched two titles Thursday night one for themselves and one for the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Photo feature: Afternoon snack
A squirrel munches seeds on a fallen spruce tree near sunset earlier this week.

Bear-marked trees have researchers pondering bruin behavior
JUNEAU Bears do more than poop in the woods. They carve up the forest with their claws.

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