Friday, July 25, 2003

Former symphony director's lawsuit likely to be delayed
FAIRBANKS (AP) A former Fairbanks Symphony Association director may have to wait another two years for a day in court in her million-dollar defamation lawsuit against the association and eight University of Alaska Fairbanks faculty.

Ketchikan borough approves more money for airport
KETCHIKAN (AP) The Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly has approved $600,000 more for renovation work at Ketchikan International Airport.

Defunct Kmart draws a crowd
FAIRBANKS (AP) Kmart's sprawling parking lot has become a field of recreational vehicles since the store went out of business and city officials say there's not much they can do.

Governor seeks federal rights of way
WASHINGTON (AP) Gov. Frank Murkowski asked Interior Department officials Thursday for an agreement recognizing historic trails and roads on federal land in Alaska.

Pilot's husband says fuel company is to blame
FAIRBANKS (AP) A lawsuit has been filed claiming that a fuel company is to blame for a July 2001 crash that killed a pilot and three passengers.

Spill council offers head job to Gail Phillips
ANCHORAGE (AP) The agency in charge of spending what's left of $900 million in Exxon Valdez oil spill restoration funds has offered its top job to longtime Republican politician Gail Phillips.

Seward man arraigned in killing
ANCHORAGE (AP) The Seward man accused of killing his friend and co-worker last weekend entered a plea of not guilty Wednesday to a charge of first-degree murder, the district attorney's office in Kenai said.

Wildfire smoke blankets Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS (AP) A fire 25 miles south of Tanana has sent haze toward Fairbanks and prompted health warnings.

Man convicted in stabbing death of his wife
ANCHORAGE (AP) A jury found a man guilty Wednesday of killing his wife by stabbing her 43 times.

Murkowski seeks grant for southwest power plant
FAIRBANKS (AP) U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski has introduced a bill to provide a federal grant for a power plant to supply a proposed gold mine and villages in southwestern Alaska.

Recently acquitted couple going to prison after all
ANCHORAGE (AP) A couple recently acquitted of trying to hire a hit man to kill a federal judge and prosecutor are going to federal prison after all.

State provides money for Victims for Justice
ANCHORAGE (AP) The 18-year-old support group Victims for Justice will not have to close its doors in 30 days because of a lack of state funding.

Scientists to share information in bird study
ANCHORAGE (AP) Scientists are teaming up to study the impact of rising numbers of predators on nesting arctic shorebirds on Alaska's North Slope.

Legislature does not have votes for special session
JUNEAU (AP) There is not enough support among Republicans in the Legislature to return to a special session to preserve the state's senior citizen Longevity Bonus program, which is slated to end in August.

Young seeks study for Susitna dam
ANCHORAGE (AP) A possible hydroelectric project on the Susitna River may get another look if Congress approves a bill that emerged from the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee on Wednesday.

Fairbanks man sentenced for fraud
FAIRBANKS (AP) A man convicted defrauding the Veterans Administration was sentenced Thursday to more than two years in prison.

Candidate buys ad to defend his character
FAIRBANKS (AP) State Rep. Jim Whitaker bought a newspaper advertisement Wednesday to deny rumors that he has abused alcohol or drugs or cheated on his wife.

Homer man critically injured in rollover
ANCHORAGE (AP) A Homer man was critically injured Thursday after his pickup truck left the Seward Highway and rolled.

Stranded rafter's signal fire burns 1,000 acres
ANCHORAGE (AP) A rafter stranded on the banks of an eastern Interior river lit a signal fire Tuesday that has grown to more than 1,000 acres.

Fran Ulmer headed to Harvard
JUNEAU (AP) Former Lt. Gov. Fran Ulmer, who lost her bid for governor against former senator and now Gov. Frank Murkowski, is headed to Harvard in the fall.

Anchorage Assembly approves $10 million 911 upgrade
ANCHORAGE (AP) The Anchorage Assembly on Tuesday unanimously approved a $10.4 million contract to upgrade the city's 911 system.

Search scaled back for missing man
ANCHORAGE (AP) The search for a man believed to have fallen into a swift-running Creek on Monday continued Thursday but was scaled back, Alaska State Troopers said.

Work begins on natural gas projects in Sakhalin
ANCHORAGE (AP) Work has begun on several multi-billion dollar natural gas projects in Sakhalin in Russia's Far East.

Company to treat waste from drilling operations
KENAI (AP) A startup company to treat waste from drilling operations and store treated soils in Tyonek has been granted a one-year permit.

Organ donor and recipient say they were meant to come together
ANCHORAGE (AP) If you believe in fate, LaVonne Vogt and Hope Russo's story will confirm it for you.

Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center celebrates 40th anniversary
JUNEAU (AP) The Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center provides information about the natural history of Juneau's most accessible glacier and the surrounding Tongass National Forest.

Schools offer high-tech skills for a price
ANCHORAGE (AP) The job market in Alaska is hungry for workers with high-tech skills, and business is brisk at vocational training centers and other educational institutions.

Tour operator's troubles felt statewide
ANCHORAGE (AP) A tour company's financial mess has angered vendors and employees who are demanding payment.

Usibelli Coal worker hospitalized after explosion
FAIRBANKS (AP) A Usibelli Coal Mine worker injured in an explosion last week was in satisfactory condition Wednesday at Fairbanks Memorial Hospital, a nursing supervisor said.

Scott McNeice wins 267-mile wheelchair race
ANCHORAGE (AP) After finishing second twice, Scott McNeice came out on top Thursday, winning the men's handcycle division of the Midnight Sun Ultra Challenge wheelchair and handcycle race.

Bonds celebrates birthday with a blast
SAN FRANCISCO Barry Bonds threw himself quite a birthday bash.

Twins finish regular season with loss
The American Legion Twins baseball team just had one of those days Wednesday.

Baltimore roughs up Clemens at Yankee Stadium
NEW YORK Baltimore sent Roger Clemens to his quickest exit in a year, with Jeff Conine and B.J. Surhoff hitting early home runs to back Sidney Ponson and lead the Orioles over the New York Yankees 5-3 Thursday.

Asset Allocation is key to successful investing
NEW YORK (AP) With the stock market up sharply since March, many Americans may want to take a fresh look at how their money is invested.

Risky deals harder to hide from investors
NEW YORK (AP) The Enron executives who hid the company's debt in a labyrinth of secret deals would find it harder to get away with such schemes nowadays.

As parents age, boomer sons also become caregivers
NEW YORK (AP) When dentist Bard Levey and his wife moved to a suburb of New York, they looked for a big house. It wasn't just because they had a toddler he was also bringing his parents to live with them.

CORPORATE DROP-OUTS: Women who jettison the corporate rat race in search of more family time have company men may be following their lead.

Water costs, drought spur Western businesses to conserve
DENVER (AP) An Intel Corp. engineer was in an airport restroom when he noticed something he thought might help the chip maker save water at its Colorado Springs plant: waterless urinals.

One fish, two fish: Reds, kings flood Kenai River
There's just one week left in both the Kenai River sport king salmon and personal use sockeye dip net fisheries, and fishing looks to remain strong through the last day of both seasons, July 31.

Your next cast could be the catch of a lifetime
Just when you thought it was safe to put your line back in the water ...

Bonsai is part art, part structure and part gardening. To many, it's silent poetry
NEW MARKET, Va. (AP) It's been said that mastering the ancient art of bonsai requires the eye of a painter, the technical skills of a horticulturist and the hands of a craftsman. Not to mention the patience and enlightenment of Buddha.

Writer delves into Yupik village's values
St. Lawrence Island seems, on the map, to be one of the most remote places on earth. Yet for 150 years the storms of cultural change have buffeted its inhabitants.

Art Briefs
Art classes offeredKids' art workshops heldTheater production needs donated dollsMuseum seeks volunteersFuture of Pratt Museum to be discussedArtists in Schools solicits interest

Summer Event showcases mastery in dressage, jumping competitions
This past weekend in Kenai the catch phrase of many equine enthusiasts was "Been there, jumped that."

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

Don McLean still thankful for his piece of pie
LOS ANGELES Thirty-two years after sealing his fate forever with one amazingly catchy 8 1/2-minute tune, Don McLean is gingerly asked the question once again:

Agrium's donation appreciated
On behalf of the board of directors and staff of Central Peninsula Health Centers, I would like to publicly thank Agrium for the donation of cabinets and shelving units for our two clinics, Cottonwood Health Center and Aspen Dental Center.

Arby's shows support for youth
We would like to thank Soldotna Arby's for allowing our youth group to have a very successful car wash on July 5. Their graciousness helped enable many kids to attend a National Youth Conference in Virginia.

Kenai officials miss point about rec center decision
What is the city of Kenai doing? The Kenai Recreation Center has been closed now since July 11 a period of more than 12 days. There is no reason for the city to keep the rec center closed other than to punish the concerned citizens who dared to challenge the legality of the city's actions.

Remember bison, passenger pigeons; let's protect bears
Let's call it "Bear Facts."

Murkowski's quick fix of budget cuts will lead to economic disaster
Thursday's story on the funding cut by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conser-vation for the Cook Inlet Keepers fully demonstrates that the Murkowski administration does not have a clue on how to downsize state government.

Gordon in New York state of mind
Robby Gordon, who finished fifth in the New England 300 at New Hampshire International Speedway on Sunday, made a special appearance at a New York firehouse Tuesday to unveil a new FDNY-Special Olympics paint scheme. Gordon's No. 31 Chevrolet Monte Carlo will promote fire safety and the Special Olympics Aug. 10 for the Sirius at the Glen at Watkins Glen International on Aug. 10.

Race Schedule
February 16 to November 16, 2003

This week's race: Pennsylvania 500
Where and when

Points Leaders
1. Matt Kenseth 2,8482. Jeff Gordon 2,6143. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 2,575

Earnhardt noticed talent in game rival
LONG POND, Pa. The faceless person on the other end of the Internet used the screen name dalejr3.

Newsmaker: Travis Carter
Car owner Travis Carter has been close to being out of business on the NASCAR Winston Cup Series a couple times in the past few years.

Money Leaders
1. Jimmie Johnson $3,587,8152. Kurt Busch 3,212,6803. Michael Waltrip 3,065,880

Johnson looking for two in a row at Pocono
LONG POND, Pa. Jimmie Johnson looks at the series standings and realizes a second straight victory will do little more than solidify his spot in the top five.

Couple cited for poaching
Culminating a season-long undercover investigation on the Kenai Peninsula, the Alaska State Troopers' Wildlife Investigation Bureau cited a Florida couple for allegedly poaching king and red salmon.

High winds across Kachemak Bay cause power outage, forest fire
High winds across Kachemak Bay led to a power outage and small forest fire about 6 p.m. Wednesday on the south side of Kachemak Bay.

Coffee stand workers get jolt
Two employees of Coffee Time Espresso in Kenai are glad Diana Forslund stopped by for an Americano and a bagel Thursday morning.

Citizen water monitoring may be curtailed
A Homer-based, volunteer-dependent effort to measure the water quality of the Kachemak Bay and Anchor River watersheds that has demonstrated that it meets state and national standards could be curtailed because of recent policy decisions by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation, according to the Cook Inlet Keeper.

Wagoner: State needs new revenue
Sen. Tom Wagoner, R-Kenai, told the Kenai Chamber of Commerce Wednesday that the state needs to continue searching for new sources of revenue while it works to downsize state spending.

Start-up company offers new way to treat waste
The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation has issued a one-year permit to a Tyonek Native Corp. subsidiary called Envirotech LLC, allowing the start-up company to treat waste from drilling operations and store treated soils at its Tyonek site.

Security not big concern for area officials
The fatal shooting of a city council member in New York's City Hall on Wednesday shook up everyone close enough to hear the shot and has caused local governments across the country to question the level of security in their buildings.

Some like it hot; Mild winter leads to insect infestations
Bugs like it hot ... well, mild at least.

Heather Faeo
Nikiski resident Heather Faeo died July 1, 2003, at Children's Hospital in Denver as a result of injuries sustained in an accident May 17. She was 14.

Norman P. Witalec
Nikiski resident Norman P. Witalec died Saturday, July 12, 2003, at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage. He was 72.

R.B. D. Jackson
Longtime Homer resident R.B. D. Jackson died Wednesday, June 18, 2003, from metastatic colon cancer at South Peninsula General Hospital in Homer. He was 77.

Taieesha Katrina Stamer
Lifelong Nikiski resident Taieesha Katrina Stamer died Saturday, July 19, 2003. She was 23.

M. Katherine (Conner-Prince-Drake) Kribs
Former Soldotna resident M. Katherine (Conner-Prince-Drake) Kribs of Anchorage died Sunday, July 20, 2003, in Anchorage. She was 57.

Sherry A. Hagen
Homer resident Sherry A. Hagen died Monday, July 21, 2003, from injuries sustained in a vehicle accident in Homer. She was 45.

Oilers bounce back to beat Fire
Peninsula starting pitcher Ladd Hall gutted out an eight-inning performance while his mates provided plenty of run support as the Oilers defeated the Athletes in Action-Alaska Fire 8-3 Thursday at Growden Memorial Park in Fairbanks.

More than a game: Oilers add to community life
The Kenai Peninsula's boys of summer have wrapped up at Coral Seymour Memo-rial Park in Kenai. The Peninsula Oilers played their last home game Sunday.

Classic summer fun good bargain for fans
Who says there's nothing fun to do on a summer Saturday evening in Kenai?

Oilers battle Goldpanners in doubleheader
The Peninsula Oilers dropped the opening game of a doubleheader 4-0 to the Alaska Goldpanners of Fairbanks Wednesday at Growden Memorial Park in Fairbanks.

No room at NASA for culture of complacency
It was bad enough that various documents blame the Columbia shuttle disaster on insolent senior managers at NASA. Now, an independent investigator's report reveals that the space program is riddled with what's become a culture of complacency.

Soldotna recognizes contributions of its business community Progress Days also serves as reminder that businesses that support community deserve support of peninsula residents
Soldotna will celebrate its past, enjoy its present and look forward to a bright future during this weekend's Progress Days. The theme of this year's event There's No Business Like Soldotna Business highlights the role the city's many and diverse commercial ventures have played in making the community what it is today.

Keeping highways safe may mean requiring drivers to prove ability
By all accounts, the 83-year-old Cali

Experience priceless, but anglers' catch not big enough to pay for trip
The two men ahead of us checking in at the Kenai Airport looked like a walking advertisement for both Banana Republic and Orvis. Their fly rods were tucked safely into im

Bush now on damage control
WASHINGTON The White House has teamed with GOP congressional leaders in an aggressive damage-control campaign to counter embarrassing questions about prewar intelligence and lapses by President Bush's national security team.

The forest detective at work on the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge
I often tell school kids that I am a "forest detective" at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. Officially my job is labeled "ecologist," but basically I am paid to figure out what's going on in the woods.

Watershed Forum plans events
Saturday, geologist Dick Reger will lead a walk through the last major glaciation of the Kenai Peninsula and the formation of the Kenai River Valley. Par

Women's shooting clinic slated for Cooper Landing
The National Rifle Association's Women on Target program will sponsor an instructional shooting clinic for women at the Cooper Landing Gun Club on Aug. 15 and 16, and again on Sept. 19 and 20.

Cowboy fun shoot Saturday
The Snow Shoe Gun Club will host a Cowboy Single Action Shooting Fun Shoot Saturday at the pistol range. Setup is at 9 a.m., registration at 9:45 and gunsmoke at 10.

Photo feature: Don't fence me in
Sandi and Tom Wright are sandwiched between fences as they walk back to their truck after visiting Saint Nicholas Memorial Chapel in Kenai. They Boston couple said they're spending two weeks touring Alaska.

Around the Peninsula
Blood drive planned

Around the Peninsula
KVCC hosts two new programs Nature walks scheduled at wildlife refuge KPRL to sponsor car, bike show Gun club to host cowboy fun shoot Young Republicans hold membership meeting

Church Briefs
Native fellowship meets tonight Christian Center hosts special speakers Apostolic Assembly plans flea market Center celebrates Progress Days Volleyball camp planned Grace Lutheran plans Bible school Children invited to Bible school Creationist theologian to speak Bible stories, crafts, games planned Russian-America festival slated Church plans vacation Bible school Friendship closet open Wednesdays Healing Rooms open weekends

Mosque council warns against censorship of Palestine conference
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) New Jersey's council of mosques urged state officials not to interfere with a national ''Palestine Solidarity'' conference Oct. 10-12 at Rutgers University.

Washington residents fear Buddhists would bring noise, traffic
WOODINVILLE, Wash. (AP) Heavy traffic and loud noise aren't typically associated with Buddhist monks. But some neighbors of a monastery near Woodinville fear that's what a proposed meditation center would bring.

Cardinal Law won't be attending successor's Boston installation
BOSTON (AP) Cardinal Bernard Law will not attend the installation next Wednesday of his successor, the Archdiocese of Boston announced.

Christian Zionists criticized by fellow believers for campaigning against Mideast ''road map''
NEW YORK (AP) As Israelis and Palestinians take faltering steps toward peace in the Mideast, Christian groups watching from the United States have taken sharply different stances on the peace plan backed by President Bush.

United Church asks Boy Scouts to shift gay policy, supports transgendered churchgoers
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The United Church of Christ's General Synod urged the Boy Scouts of America to drop its ban on openly gay leaders, while a separate action expressed support for transgendered persons in the church.

Having a relationship with Jesus is key to fellowship with God
A few years ago I was in central Siberia and found myself engaged in conversation with a young atheist. He explained to me the reasons for his belief system. He despised organized religion. He did not believe there was a God. He had no time for the opinions of others.

New Mexico Catholics sue over sermon at politician's funeral
CHAMA, N.M. (AP) The family of former Chama Councilman Ben Martinez is suing a Roman Catholic priest and the Archdiocese of Santa Fe over the sermon at Martinez' funeral.

Louisiana gets the latest married Catholic priest
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) A married man with three children has been ordained a priest by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Baton Rouge.

U.S. Catholicism can't go on like this, four analysts say but there the agreement ends
The roiling sex abuse crisis of the past 19 months has gravely worsened already existing problems for the Roman Catholic Church in America, triggering urgent discussions about the future of the faith.

In rare move, disgruntled Catholics petition for Dallas bishop's removal
DALLAS (AP) Roman Catholic parishioners in Dallas fed up with the fallout from the clerical sex abuse crisis have taken the rare step of starting a petition drive that urges their bishop to resign.

Missouri college could lose Baptist funding
LIBERTY, Mo. (AP) The executive board of the Missouri Baptist Convention voted to end financial support for William Jewell College because it takes no decisive stand against homosexuality.

Birch Ridge Report: Reminder: Senior tournament kicks off today at Birch Ridge Golf Course
Today's golf tidings start with a reminder/suggestion: If your own children want you to baby sit, then you're more than likely old enough to play in the Peninsula Senior Open Tournament here at Birch Ridge Golf Course.

Eagles fans have beef with new stadium policy
PHILADELPHIA The Philadelphia Eagles say they won't let people bring hoagies and other food into their lavish $520 million stadium set to open next month. To which Eagles fans respond: ''Baloney!''

Hamilton earns first Tour stage triumph
BAYONNE, France Riding with the pain of a double-fractured collarbone, it could be argued that Tyler Hamilton shouldn't even be in the Tour de France. Try telling him that.

Davis tells Broncos he's not ready to go
DENVER The Denver Broncos waived Terrell Davis, one of the most popular players in team history, on Thursday after learning the star running back would not pass his physical.

Sport Briefs
KCHS cross country practice starts Monday

Win would put Armstrong on short list of greats
BORDEAUX, France Trying to pick the greatest cyclist in Tour de France history can be as tough as riding in the Alps.

U.S. takes Brazil to overtime
MIAMI The United States was three or four minutes from beating Brazil for only the second time.

Armstrong keeps lead after 17th stage
BORDEAUX, France Saving himself and his overall lead for their great battle to come, Lance Armstrong finished grouped with archrival Jan Ullrich in the Tour de France's pancake-flat 17th stage Thursday, their focus on an expected race-deciding time trial.

In ancient Athens, a frantic struggle under way to ready for the Olympics
A stray dog lying in the doorway of a deluxe hotel near the Acropolis had bedded down and was sleeping undisturbed. He didn't even raise a paw when some tourists returned for the night and stepped around him.

Six players move in four-team NBA deal
The four-team NBA trade that had been rumored for 24 hours was finally made Wednesday night.

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