Wednesday, August 6, 2003

Troopers, wildlife officers now in one agency
JUNEAU (AP) The Department of Public Safety is going ahead with a plan to merge its Fish and Wildlife Protection division with the Alaska State Troopers.

Palmer man charged with attempted murder in assault
ANCHORAGE (AP) A Palmer man has been charged with attempted murder and assault following incidents over the weekend near the Knik River, Alaska State Troopers said.

Fishermen sought for testimony on foreign competition relief
KODIAK (AP) State and federal labor officials are visiting three Alaska communities to find out why fishermen find it difficult to qualify for a program designed to assist workers who lost income due to foreign competition.

FCC order lifts ban on competing earth stations
JUNEAU (AP) The Federal Communications Commission on Wednesday lifted a ban on long-distance telephone companies constructing satellite earth stations in Bush Alaska.

Cold War lab equipment found at Gerstle dump
FAIRBANKS (AP) Lab equipment used during the United States' chemical warfare testing has been unearthed by contractors working at an abandoned Gerstle River dump southeast of Delta Junction.

Interior Secretary Norton announces Alaska projects
ANCHORAGE (AP) Interior Secretary Gale Norton made two announcements Wednesday affecting Alaska.

State marketing used ferry on eBay
JUNEAU (AP) Among the gigabytes of used golf clubs, antique furniture and other residential castaways regularly hawked at the popular online auction site eBay is an unusual bargain: A 1,500-ton Alaska ferry, capable of carrying an entire neighborhood ... and their cars.

Protesters target agriculture undersecretary over roadless rule
ANCHORAGE (AP) About 60 environmental activists gathered outside Anchorage's Loussac Library Wednesday to protest the Bush administration's recent proposal to exempt the Tongass and Chugach national forests from the Clinton-era roadless rule.

Residents assess damages left by Parks Highway flood
FAIRBANKS (AP) Residents affected by flooding around the Parks Highway last week are now assessing the damages.

Bear incidents cause camping closure
GLACIER BAY (AP) Brown bear incidents have forced an emergency closure to overnight camping in a section of Glacier Bay National Park.

Airmen unharmed in plane crash near Alaska Range
FAIRBANKS (AP) Two Eielson Air Force Base captains escaped injury in a crash landing near the foothills of the Alaska Range southwest of Delta Junction.

Cruise ship passenger dies of heart attack
JUNEAU (AP) A cruise ship passenger died of a heart attack aboard the vessel earlier this week.

State, federal anti-terrorism efforts combine in Alaska
JUNEAU (AP) Separate state and federal anti-terrorism task forces in Alaska have merged into a single new group. Officials say the merger should allow them to work more efficiently.

Driver charged with murder, assault
ANCHORAGE (AP) A 21-year-old man has been charged with second-degree murder and assault in connection with a fatal crash last year near Wasilla that killed one person and injured several others.

Governor says Kansas firm negotiating with Williams
FAIRBANKS (AP) The state is negotiating with a potential buyer of state royalty oil for use at the Williams refinery in North Pole, Gov. Frank Murkowski said.

Coalition seeks to protect Bering Sea

State changes plans for Ketchikan bridges
KETCHIKAN (AP) The state has selected a $244 million option with two high bridges as its preferred alternative for access to its island-bound airport.

UAF looking for berries for health study
FAIRBANKS (AP) The University of Alaska Fairbanks is asking for berry donations, any kind of berries, raspberries, cranberries, even cloudberries and crowberries.

Parents, estate win $162,000 in boy's death
ANCHORAGE (AP) The parents and estate of a 2-year-old boy who failed to get proper medical attention at the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corp. in Bethel have won a $162,000 award, under a ruling by a federal judge.

Fairbanks bishop issues apology for Delta priest
ANCHORAGE (AP) A molestation accusation against a Bethel priest has been resolved after a published apology in regional newspapers, but authorities are still investigating the matter.

Burn ban imposed on western Kenai Peninsula
ANCHORAGE (AP) The state Division of Forestry has imposed a burn ban on open burning on the western Kenai Peninsula.

Home Depot construction under way in Kenai
KENAI (AP) Construction or more appropriately deconstruction got under way in Kenai on Friday in the building formerly known as Big Kmart.

Murkowski again says no to Russian processing vessels
ANCHORAGE (AP) Governor Murkowski has again rejected a request to allow Russian processing vessels into U.S. waters.

Methamphetamine materials may have started fire
ANCHORAGE (AP) A fire at a mobile home early Monday morning is believed to have been started by a methamphetamine lab, Anchorage police said.

Juneau soldier awarded Bronze Star
JUNEAU (AP) A soldier who grew up in Juneau has received the Bronze Star for meritorious achievement during the last Gulf War.

Man charged with assault after tree-clearing protest
ANCHORAGE (AP) Police arrested an elderly South Anchorage man for assault Monday after the resident, agitated by tree-clearing for new ball fields in Far North Bicentennial Park, jabbed a site worker with his cane.

Palmer balks at request for hospital land
WASILLA (AP) Plans to build a new $75 million hospital in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough have hit a snag with the city of Palmer.

Ketchikan borough advances cruise ship head tax
KETCHIKAN (AP) Cruise ship customers would pay a $5 head tax under a proposed ordinance advanced Monday by the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly.

VA officials plan Alaska tour
ANCHORAGE (AP) U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs staff will tour Pioneers' and Veterans' Homes this month to determine what must be changed to allow federal reimbursement to the state for military veterans' care.

Warranty company money woes leave Fairbanks drivers short
FAIRBANKS (AP) Money woes of a national company that sold extended warrantees for used cars is causing headaches for Fairbanks dealers and drivers who bought the now seemingly unusable contracts.

State auctions retiring ferry on eBay
JUNEAU (AP) Here's the latest hot eBay deal: a 15-hundred ton Alaska state ferry.

Congress jostles for position on energy bill
WASHINGTON (AP) With Congress out of town for August and then likely focused on spending bills through September, a two-month game of positioning on a final national energy policy bill has begun.

CIRI settles infighting lawsuit
ANCHORAGE (AP) Cook Inlet Region Inc. has settled a bitter legal fight with two of its loudest critics.

Leman rejects anti-tax initiative
JUNEAU (AP) A ballot initiative to make it more difficult to impose a tax on Alaskans was rejected Tuesday by Lt. Gov. Loren Leman.

No attendance limit on Talkeetna festival after all
ANCHORAGE (AP) There will be no attendance limits at this week's Talkeetna Bluegrass and Music Festival after all.

Athletics top Tigers for ninth win in 12 tries
DETROIT Rookie Rich Harden won again, pitching six strong innings as the Oakland Athletics beat the Detroit Tigers 7-2 Tuesday night.

Royals extend AL Central lead
CHICAGO Aaron Guiel hit a three-run double in a seven-run sixth inning and the Kansas City Royals beat the Chicago White Sox 13-9 Monday night to extend their AL Central lead to three games.

Florida pitcher tosses seven sharp innings against Cardinals
ST. LOUIS Brad Penny allowed four hits in seven sharp innings as the Florida Marlins beat Woody Williams and the St. Louis Cardinals 4-0 Tuesday night.

Smoltz on pace for MLB record
ATLANTA John Smoltz got to spend an entire game in the dugout. No pressure. No apprehension. No wondering if he'd get called on to pitch.

Kent suspended for two games
HOUSTON (AP) Astros second baseman Jeff Kent was suspended for two games and fined Tuesday as a result of his argument with umpire Matt Hollowell during a game against the Chicago Cubs on July 26.

4-H Livestock Auction draws near
One of the highlights of summer is in sight with the State Fair at Ninilchik coming up next week, August 15-17. This is a busy time of year for 4-H youngsters with hopes of winning ribbons and earning some money at the Junior Market Livestock Auction.

No Business like Soldotna Business: 43rd Annual Progress Days
The 43rd Annual Progress Days was a great success in Soldotna last week, with more activities, participants and visitors than ever.

Russian youth visit Alaska
Not so long ago citizens of the U.S.S.R. were not able to travel anywhere outside of the Soviet Union, but today there is a new Russia, and young Russians are free to travel to anywhere their finances allow.

Live Ride brings bikers and raises bucks for MDA
It was a day of parades last Saturday. Following the 43rd Annual Progress Days parade down Binkley Street in Soldotna, came a police escorted cavalcade of more than 300 motorcycles down the Sterling Highway from Cook's Tesoro in Sterling to the Kenai Peninsula Harley Davidson just outside Soldotna.

Clouds don't blanket enthusiasm at free picnic
The days may not have been as shiny and bright as many have been this summer, but the wind and the clouds didn't dampen the excitement any during Soldotna's 43rd Annual Progress Days celebration last week.

Soldotna needs cemetery
The Soldotna Historical Society approached the city in 2001 regarding establishment of a cemetery for residents of Soldotna and the surrounding area.

State agencies officially join forces
The commissioner of the Alaska Department of Public Safety announced Monday that a plan to merge the state's two law enforcement agencies into a single department will go forward.

Home Depot digs in
Construction or more appropriately deconstruction got under way in Kenai on Friday in the building that was formerly known as Big Kmart.

Grant helps Kenai to get defibrillators
Cardiovascular disease is the second leading cause of death in Alaska, according to a division of the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, and emergency responders in Kenai want to keep that from being a leading cause of death among people in Kenai.

GTL plant up and running New technology now producing about 100 barrels a day
After a long startup and a series of technical hiccups, BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc.'s new gas-to-liquids test facility in Nikiski is now fully operational.

Filings open for peninsula elections
Voters going to the polls Oct. 7 will have the chance to return incumbent candidates to familiar roles or put new faces on local legislative bodies.

Youth corps wraps up summer of restoration
Eight participants of the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge Youth Conservation Corps are wrapping up their work this week, as this season's program nears its end.

Ballot issues top KPB agenda
A resolution to place a proposition on the Oct. 7 municipal ballot asking voters to support the Challenger Learning Center of Alaska with a property tax levy will be among several items on tonight's Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting agenda that could end up on the same ballot.

Photo feature: Passing through
A late-evening storm passes across the face of Mount Susitna as seen from the air above Point Possession earlier this week.

Thomas Paul Olendorff Sr.
Soldotna resident Thomas Paul Olendorff Sr. died Friday, Aug. 1, 2003, due to complications of leukemia at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. He was 67.

Pamela Raye Peterson
Soldotna resident Pamela Raye Peterson died Wednesday, July 30, 2003, at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage. She was 56.

Sperry A. Moonin Sr.
Nanwalek resident Sperry A. Moonin Sr. died Saturday, Aug. 2, 2003, from a capsized boat on his way to Nanwalek. He was 56.

Politics makes bad public policy
If you've ever wondered why Americans are so cynical about Washington, look no further than Congress' recent moves to add a prescription-drug benefit to Medicare.

Clean Elections experiment fizzles
BOSTON Five years ago, Massachusetts voters overwhelmingly approved a Clean Elections law designed with the lofty goal of diminishing the influence of big-money special interests.

Abortion should not be used as litmus test for judgeship appointments
A recent national survey shows Americans evenly split between people who consider themselves "more pro-life or more pro-choice."

Philippines on verge of losing its already tenuous democracy What others say
Now that she has survived a weekend mutiny, Filipino President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo needs quickly to address the grievances that brought it about.

Special session votes should be made public
Senate President Gene Therriault and House Speaker Pete Kott need to be reminded that the public has great interest in knowing the positions of its individual legislators. The two leaders have chosen to keep secret the votes of Senate and House members on a request by Democrats to hold a special session to consider overriding the governor's veto of the Longevity Bonus Program.

Around the Peninsula
Suspension called on open burningFree car seat safety checks plannedKenai chamber meeting setVisitors center to host noon concertFood bank to hold raffleNPR holding registration for flag footballWRCC run set for SaturdaySkateboard park grand opening planned in HomerSmall business center host free workshopRedoubt back-to-school open house slatedFree developmental screening offered

Around the Peninsula
Prescription drugs information available Extended immunization clinics slated Flag football teams being formed Blood-stem cell drive scheduled Kenai Eagles plan dinner Last summer student art workshops planned Soroptimists plan benefit for cancer fund Free pressure canner dial gauge testing set

Photo feature: A bird's eye view
Trish Gordon walks in Kenai with her blue and gold macaw named Rainman as her husband, Greg, tails behind on a bike. Gordon said the bird enjoyed the opportunity to be outside.

Report shows year of growth
The 2002-03 school year was one of growth and improvement in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District.

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

AMA offers online docs' guide for gauging driver safety
CHICAGO The American Medical Association is offering a new Internet guide to help doctors decide whether their elderly patients are still fit to drive.

Senior Briefs
What activities are available for our area seniors

Haslem signs with Heat
MIAMI The Miami Heat signed power forward Udonis Haslem to a two-year contract.

Short night for Packers, Chiefs
CANTON, Ohio Priest Holmes expected to have a short night. Everyone else got one, too.

After loss to Brazil, America hasn't won Pan Am Games since 1983
SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic Once again, there will be no Pan American Games gold medal for the United States in men's basketball.

Sack king Strahan breaks little toe
ALBANY, N.Y. NFL single-season sack king Michael Strahan has a broken little toe and his status for the New York Giants' preseason opener against the New England Patriots on Thursday is uncertain.

Appeals court denies Carruth's bid for new trial
RALEIGH, N.C. Former Carolina Panther Rae Carruth lost a bid Tuesday for a new trial on his 2001 murder conspiracy conviction despite an error by a lower court.

Tyson: Millions gone on diamonds, limos, rugs
NEW YORK A diamond necklace worth as much as some houses. More than $300,000 in limousine rides. Sixty thousand dollars worth of rugs.

Visa trouble can't keep player from pitch
PORTLAND, Ore. Byron Alvarez is one of the Portland Timbers' best forwards and brightest stars. And yet he's the only member of his team who isn't paid.

Run for Women scheduled for Saturday
The 16th annual Run for Women will take place at 10 a.m. at the Kenai City Park Sunday. The run is sponsored by the Women's Resource and Crisis Center.

James back in top form with Colts
TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (AP) Edgerrin James appears to be back in form.

Source: 76ers re-sign Coleman
PHILADELPHIA Derrick Coleman has re-signed with the Philadelphia 76ers, a team source said Tuesday.

Kenai Golf Report
Well, with fishing behind me, except of course for a few silvers this fall, I'm back

Forgiven but not forgotten
Bruce Kimball wants to drive again. R.J. Kerker doesn't think that's such a good idea.

Source: Porter to lead Bucks
MILWAUKEE Terry Porter, a native of Milwaukee who played 17 seasons in the NBA, has been hired to coach the Bucks, according to a league source.

UCLA to honor Wooden
LOS ANGELES (AP) Former UCLA coach John Wooden and his late wife will be honored Dec. 20 when the basketball floor at Pauley Pavilion will be named ''John and Nell Wooden Court.''

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