Monday, April 29, 2002

Veterans Affairs secretary pledges help for Alaska vets
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The man in charge of veterans affairs in the United States said strategies are in the works to give Alaska veterans access to federal or state veterans homes.

Juneau resident feels effect of dry spring
JUNEAU (AP) -- Wells running dry in Juneau? Dixie Hood believed she'd never run out of water in Juneau, but it's happened. Hood is a victim of Juneau's driest spring on record that has left her well pump on Back Loop Road sucking air.

Anchorage woman dies in single-car accident
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An Anchorage woman died after her car rolled on a busy west side street Saturday night.

BP gets tough on tanker ballast creatures
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- While oil companies go to great lengths to protect the environment, Simon Lisiecki is the first to admit that it's strange for them to want to find a way to kill tiny sea creatures.

April 25, 2002 Alaska Newspapers Inc. urges lawmakers to heed vote on subsistence
The Legislature should no longer ignore the voices clamoring for a subsistence solution.

Senate probe says some oil companies forcing up price of gasoline
WASHINGTON (AP) -- While the industry often blames gasoline price spikes on market-driven shortages, a congressional investigation has found that some oil companies reduce supplies when markets are tight to force up prices and profits.

Juneau cruise season to begin with new dock restrictions
JUNEAU (AP) -- Juneau residents will be able to walk along downtown docks this summer with some limits, according to city and U.S. Coast Guard officials.

Child slasher sentenced to concurrent 99-year terms
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A man who slashed school children under the delusion that he could send them to God by killing them was sentenced to two concurrent 99-year prison terms Monday morning.

Fish and Game puzzled by caribou deaths
JUNEAU (AP) -- The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has called a halt to capturing caribou with immobilizing drugs while it investigates why an unusually high number of the animals have died.

Anchorage woman donates land to botanical garden
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Longtime Anchorage resident Oro Stewart has donated 50 acres in Potter Valley to the Alaska Botanical Garden.

Fiscal plan meetings resume on Saturday with no headway
JUNEAU (AP) -- Several House lawmakers emerged from a meeting Saturday with Gov. Tony Knowles with no resolution on breaking the impasse over tax proposals aimed at the state's deficit.

Anchorage woman dies in single-car accident
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An Anchorage woman died after her car rolled on a busy west side street Saturday night.

Judge allows limited Tongass timber harvests
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- Right-of-way clearing for the Swan Lake-Lake Tyee electrical intertie and five other timber harvests on the Tongass National Forest can proceed, according to a ruling Friday by U.S. District Court Judge James K. Singleton.

Russians travel to Alaska to learn about free-market health care
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Ten health care professionals from the Russian Far East are coming to Anchorage next month to learn more about how to provide health care in a market economy.

Juneau jury deadlocks in assault trial, convicts on evidence charge
JUNEAU (AP) -- After deliberating for nearly two days, a jury could not decide whether a Juneau man who stabbed an acquaintance more than 20 times was guilty of assault.

Three rescued after skiff capsizes near Ketchikan
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- A Ketchikan sea urchin diver rescued three people unable to swim to shore after their 12-foot-long skiff capsized Saturday in the Tongass Narrows.

Anchorage police arrest suspects in holdup
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Two 20-year-old men were arrested shortly after a man was robbed outside a south Anchorage bank Sunday morning.

Wolf-eel to be displayed at Alaska SeaLife Center
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A wolf-eel, a serpentine fish with sharp canine teeth and powerful molars, will soon go on display at the Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward.

Whitakers says Mulder threatened to kill state fiscal plan
JUNEAU (AP) -- Fairbanks Rep. Jim Whitaker says the powerful co-chair of the House Finance Committee threatened to kill a state fiscal plan and punish Fairbanks because of Whitaker's push to transform a bill that offers tax breaks for a natural gas pipeline.

Federal health center funding increased
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The federal government has increased the amount of money it spends on community health centers in Alaska for the second time in a year.

Applications being taken for village police officer academy
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Applications are being accepted for a two-week program to train village police officers, according to Alaska State Troopers.

April 22, 2002 The Voice of the Times urges daylight savings time year round
Since we said, as we did a few days ago, that the Legislature is wasting time with a bill to outlaw daylight-saving time in Alaska, we have come up with a new idea. If the lawmakers are going to continue dabbling with the clock, they should quit thinking about banning daylight time and take a big leap in the other direction.

Seventy-four teams compete in Native Youth Olympics
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Leroy Shangin had a strategy for the Alaska high kick at this year's Native Youth Olympics.

April 24, 2002 The Anchorage Daily News says House budget defies court abortion ruling
Alaska legislators take an oath to support and defend the constitutions of the United States and the state of Alaska. That oath is being blatantly violated by some anti-abortion legislators. Directly defying a decision by the Alaska Supreme Court last summer, this year's House-passed budget contains a ban on funding abortions for the poor.

April 22, 2002 The Petersburg Pilot says industry opposition to tax doesn't hold water
Overall, the travel and adventure businesses presented weak arguments to the city council Monday night on the pending ordinance to revoke the sales tax exemption of local operators. Many testified that this will be a tough year as bookings are down when compared with this time last year. Since the ordinance may not be implemented for more than a year or two, the current economy will in all likelihood change.

Young researcher tracks pollution through mussels
JUNEAU (AP) -- At the state science fair in Anchorage last month, Natalie Hale showed off her mussels. Now the Juneau-Douglas High School sophomore is getting ready to demonstrate at an international science fair how the mollusks can track pollution.

League addresses Roberts, Tucker hits
UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- NHL disciplinarian Colin Campbell addressed the media covering Game 6 of the Toronto-New York playoff series by speaker phone Sunday to defend the league's decisions on hits by Toronto's Gary Roberts and Darcy Tucker in Game 5.

Yankees open West Coast swing with win
SEATTLE -- In their first trip West this season, the New York Yankees repeated their success from last year's playoffs.

Los Angeles takes two games at Wrigley Field
CHICAGO -- Kazuhisa Ishii became the first Los Angeles rookie to win his first five decisions since Fernando Valenzuela in 1981, beating the Chicago Cubs 5-4 Sunday in the opener of a doubleheader.

Astacio comes close to Mets' first no-hitter
NEW YORK -- Pedro Astacio didn't allow a hit until Geoff Jenkins lined a single to left field with one out in the seventh inning Saturday, and the New York Mets beat the Milwaukee Brewers 2-1.

Boston's Lowe throws no-hitter vs. Devil Rays
BOSTON -- Derek Lowe, who couldn't keep his job as a closer, pitched the first no-hitter at Fenway Park since 1965, leading the Boston Red Sox over the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 10-0 Saturday.

Tesoro loses bid to limit state price-fixing probe
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Alaska Supreme Court has ruled against Tesoro Petroleum Corp. in its attempt to limit the scope of the state attorney general's gasoline price-fixing investigation.

Photo feature: Shopping
Ed Barcus looks at all terrain vehicles with his grandson Tyler Saturday at the Sports, Recreation and Trade Show at the Soldotna Sports Center. The show continues today.

Too much processed meat could increase diabetes risk in men
WASHINGTON -- Eat too many hot dogs and they can bite you back. A study shows a diet heavy in processed meats, including hot dogs and bacon, increases the risk of type 2 diabetes by about 50 percent in men, researchers say.

Chips, french fries contain substance that may cause cancer
STOCKHOLM, Sweden -- Potato chips, french fries and other high-carbohydrate foods contain a substance that may cause cancer, according to a study released Wednesday by Swedish food authorities.

Youngsters to receive pedometers in pilot program to battle obesity
DENVER (AP) -- Pedometers in the form of matchbook-size belt clips will hopefully make walking more fun for 200 Denver youngsters as part of a pilot program aimed at battling childhood obesity.

NOW PLAYING: Murder By Numbers
Murder By Numbers sounds like it should be a remake of an old 50's noir detective story, something like Dial M for Murder, or Double Indemnity. That could have been a fun movie to go see. Maybe Sandra Bullock could've been the updated, jaded P.I., and some blonde pretty boy could've been the mol. Instead, we are served up the same old thing; the standard potboiler with the standard characters in a standard setting. Murder By Numbers? More like moviemaking by numbers.

Fiscal plan remains elusive
JUNEAU -- Several House lawmakers emerged from a meeting Saturday with Gov. Tony Knowles with no resolution on breaking the impasse over tax proposals aimed at the state's deficit.

United Way exceeds goals for campaign
The Kenai Peninsula United Way raised $781,541 this year, which is more than it has ever raised before in its yearly fund-raising campaigns, announced Evy Gebhardt, executive director of the Kenai Peninsula United Way.

Gas pipeline plan dashed, but 3 wells near Ninilchik may produce
The hope for natural gas to be piped to the southern Kenai Peninsula was dashed Thursday when Unocal and Kenai Kachemak Pipeline LLC announced a decision to suspend exploration in that area. A chance, however, remains for gas distribution south of Ninilchik.

Ulmer discusses education funding, meets with fishers
Anyone wanting to catch Lt. Gov. Fran Ulmer on the Kenai Peninsula this weekend didn't have to go far, but they had to be quick.

Shareholders ponder CIRI choices
Cook Inlet Region Inc., the most profitable of Alaska's Native corporations, is in the midst of a leadership struggle.

Murkowski, Veterans Affairs chief tour new Kenai clinic
U.S. Sen. Frank Murkowski flew into Kenai Saturday to show support for military veterans, and he brought some backup.

HEA tries -- again -- to buy utility in Seward
Homer Electric Association made an offer to purchase Seward's city-owned electric utility last Monday, but city officials want to weigh their options before accepting or declining.

Schools, food bank team up for two-day call for non-perishables
A canned and non-perishable food drive scheduled for this week will involve the very people who need the food the most during the summer -- kids.

Mulder unhappy about less favorable tax break for campaign contributor
JUNEAU -- Fairbanks Rep. Jim Whitaker says the powerful co-chair of the House Finance Committee threatened to kill a state fiscal plan and punish Fairbanks because of Whitaker's push to transform a bill that offers tax breaks for a natural gas pipeline.

Skateboarders seek hassle-free activity
Josh Peterson, like many teens his age, sees nothing wrong with pursuing one of his favorite summertime hobbies -- skateboarding. The 13-year-old Soldotna youth and his friends ride their skateboards to school and get together after school to practice their moves in driveways, sidewalks, parking lots and city streets around Soldotna.

Oilers shuffle roster as season draws closer
As the 2002 season approaches, the Peninsula Oilers have made several roster pages.

Ferry system funding cuts bad for economy of Southeast Alaska
Because our highway in Southeast Alaska runs over water, its importance is far greater than a conventional road system because it operates on a limited schedule and each user pays for the privilege.

Father warmed by daughter's discovery of wonders of universe
My 9-year-old daughter had a recent revelation. Nothing earthshaking, just a dawning appreciation for how truly insignificant we are in the "grand scheme of things."

Ask the Mayor
Question: What is GIS and what is the function of the GIS Department?

Letters to the Editor
Teachers deserve respect, decent quality of life for all they doBoard of Fisheries decision offers opportunity for fishers to unite

Economic climate shows importance of buying locally
The recent U.S. Senate vote blocking oil exploration and development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge was a blow not just to the Kenai Peninsula, but to all of Alaska, and, indeed, the United States.

Requiring BP to pay fair market taxes would put state back in black
Recently, a group of well-intended, lifelong Alaskans reunited to hopefully save the Alaska Permanent Fund dividend from the Alaska Legislature's deceptive "fiscal plan." We call ourselves the "83 Percent Coalition."

Forget-Me-Not Care Center appreciates bank employeesLove INC celebrates 15 years of meeting community needsCurves for Women food drive most successful in food bank history

Soldotna couple heroes to others
James "Lucky" Kirk sits in front of a microphone, tuning his guitar and chatting with band members on either side of him. Nearby, his longtime companion, Lou Abbott, nods at microphone checks and waits for the music to begin.

A look into the past: CAA Station, Kenai, 1946
The Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA) built this flight control center on the Kenai River bluff near the present Kenai Senior Citizens Center in 1946.

My Best Friend
Marion Williams' grandson Daniel Redfern loves to visit Bruno in Kasilof. "Bruno is my pal, and I do love him," he said.

Runaway horse startles commuters on bridge in Vancouver
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) -- It was not something early morning commuters expected to see -- a horse running loose on one of the city's most heavily traveled bridges.

Peninsula People
Area student named to dean's listSterling woman wins scholarship pageantSoldotna youth awarded baseball scholarship

New York City students donate prom gowns to W.Va. girls
CLAY, W.Va. -- It was not her favorite color, and it hung from a rack made from two-by-fours and pipes, but it was the perfect prom dress for Jennifer Mullins: It had straps, it came with a wrap, and it was free.

Around the Peninsula
CIRCAC committee meets todayLibrary hosts storytelling programEDD director to speak to Soldotna chamberSnowmachine use ends in Chugach National ForestKenai chamber to discuss tax lawsSafety Day meeting scheduledPlanning coalition to meet this weekCooper Landing to discuss subsistence regulationsBlood bank suffering shortageDEC plans food-safety classesCommunity clean-up plannedDevelopmental screening offeredHospital to offer safe sitter coursePlans set for Relay for LifeBrain injury group to sponsor awareness walk

Ask a Trooper
Question: I have noticed a car running around town with two Alaska license plates being displayed. The one on the front is a personalized plate, yet the other

Photo feature: The cutting edge
Denali Ice Club members Stephanie Bishop, Tory Coursen, Stephanie Almaraz, Katie Shearer, Carissa Young, coach Sherry Eddings, Hillary Schneider and Joseph Bishop pose with their trophies after the Portland Ice Skating Club's Springfest Competition in Vancouver, Wash. The six-person team brought home 37 trophies, including four gold triathalon medals.

Justin and Crystal Fite TrickelKatie Mae RowlandRachael Woodward and Dorion Carter

Area agencies receive computers, office furniture from Phillips Alaska
Area nonprofit agencies gathered at the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank Wednesday to pick up their share of office supplies, computers and furniture donated by Phillips Alaska.

Community News
Poster contest winners announcedKCHS class of 1992 seeks membersUSS Long Beach to hold reunionLibrary to kick off summer reading programHomer Community School alters spring program

Community Schools
The following list of classes/activities that begin this week serves as a reminder to registered participants. If you are interested in a class or activity but are not preregistered, call the Soldotna Community School office to check on space availability, location changes and cancellations.

Photo feature: Eye opener
Brian Cote comforts Jasmine Eskilida at Nikiski Middle-Senior High School Friday afternoon as they watch rescuers from Nikiski Fire Department "save" classmates from mangled cars during a drill in the school's parking lot.

Region III soccer breaks into North, South divisions for 2002 season
Some peninsula soccer coaches are not happy with a new division system that they said gives Anchorage and Matanuska-Susitna valleys teams an advantage in qualifying for the Region III tournament.

Lakers, Mavericks get first-round Western playoff sweeps
PORTLAND, Ore. -- The Los Angeles Lakers used to have a bitter rivalry with Portland. Now the only intrigue is watching how many points the Lakers can spot the Trail Blazers before coming back to torment them.

Sports Briefs
Riggs wins Auto Club 300 from last place

Nowitzki leads charge past 'Wolves
MINNEAPOLIS -- The Dallas Mavericks can score, and it doesn't matter where they play or who's taking the shots.

Jerry Jones earning praise for draft, offseason moves
IRVING, Texas -- Back when Jerry Jones spent his time and money drilling oil wells, he had two ways to try to find a gusher. He could do his homework and methodically pick the spot most likely to produce, or he could be a wildcatter who took big risks and moved dirt on a whim.

Sports Briefs
Skyview has unsuccessful weekend road tripStars fall to ColonyRoddick beats Sampras to defend title

Peninsula teams finally get in full meet
After only scratching the surface of the track and field season with messy weather hindering performances, the Alaska skies opened up over the Skyview High School track Saturday afternoon to allow sun, warmth, thawing, and more importantly, competition.

Galaxy can't shoot Rapids
PASADENA, Calif. -- John Spencer scored four minutes into overtime as the Colorado Rapids withstood a 21-shot barrage from the Los Angeles Galaxy for a 1-0 victory Saturday.

Saarland healthy for Derby
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Saarland was out for a bath on this overcast morning at Churchill Downs, standing quietly near Barn 43 as he was being sponged down.

Islanders slide past Toronto
UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- In simple white lettering on a black screen above the ice, the video monitor implored the New York Islanders to win ''For Kenny and Michael.''

Coleman saves 'Sixers from first-round sweep
PHILADELPHIA -- Allen Iverson was a franchise player on Sunday.

Ferguson DQ sought; French federation prepared to fight
LAUSANNE, Switzerland -- Two key American witnesses in the Olympic figure skating scandal want the U.S. member of the International Skating Union council disqualified from a hearing Monday, claiming she prejudged the case in favor of the French judge and federation chief.

Hornets upend Orlando
ORLANDO, Fla. -- Baron Davis wasn't stopped by having a game-winning basket taken away in the last second of regulation.

Nikiski earns win, draw vs. Mariners
The Nikiski High School boys soccer team collected its first win of the season Saturday, defeating Homer 4-1 in a Region III match at Nikiski.

'Canes exorcise Devils
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Ron Francis scored a power-play goal in the second period and the Carolina Hurricanes ended 16 years of playoff frustration Saturday, eliminating the two-time def-ending Eastern Confer-ence champion New Jersey Devils with a 1-0 victory in Game 6 of their first-round series.

Fish and Game puzzled by caribou deaths
JUNEAU (AP) -- The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has called a halt to capturing caribou with immobilizing drugs while it investigates why an unusually high number of the animals have died.

Photo feature: Just passing through
Canada geese perform a fly-by in front of Vintage Pointe Manor in Kenai last week. A few snow geese also have been spotted on the Kenai River flats. The snow geese make the flats an annual stopover point on the way north to their summer feeding and nesting grounds.

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