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Thursday, August 7, 2003

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.

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.

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.

Earthquake strikes central Alaska
ANCHORAGE (AP) A light earthquake struck the central region of Alaska Wednesday night.

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.

Van hits two boys riding single bicycle in Juneau
JUNEAU - Two 12-year-old boys were hospitalized with numerous injuries after the bicycle they were riding was struck by a van in Juneau.

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.

Alaska communities show interest in alcohol program
ANCHORAGE (AP) Alaska communities are taking note of an Anchorage program to rehabilitate alcoholic criminals who clog Anchorage courts and jails.

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.

Gas-to-liquid plant opens in Nikiski
ANCHORAGE An experimental BP plant in Nikiski designed to turn natural gas into a liquid is finally up and running.

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.

Knowles says no to office space from rival Murkowski
FAIRBANKS (AP) Former Gov. Tony Knowles has rejected an offer by Republican U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski to let him use a spot in her office so he can help convince a dozen Senate Democrats to support oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

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.

Independent Native News moves to KUAC in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS (AP) The nationally distributed radio program Independent Native News will move to Fairbanks.

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.

AKCLU warns of filters on library computers
FAIRBANKS (AP) A proposed ordinance to install continuous anti-pornography filters on the Internet computers in Fairbanks could cause an angry library patron to sue, according to the Alaska Civil Liberties Union.

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.

Seven rescued after falling from boat near Kodiak
KODIAK (AP) Seven members of the Unification Church were rescued Tuesday afternoon, after suffering hypothermia when their fishing boat was swamped by a wave.

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

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.

Coalition seeks to protect Bering Sea
ANCHORAGE

Western Alaska fishing company makes plans to go public
ANCHORAGE (AP) Executives of a major Bering Sea fishing company representing several Western Alaska villages are negotiating in New York and Toronto to take the company public.

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.

Anchorage considers trail patrols
ANCHORAGE (AP) A plan to have volunteers patrol Anchorage's trail system is gaining favor among trail users who say the increased presence is needed to make safe one of the city's most popular attractions.

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.

Murkowski signs credit scoring bill
JUNEAU (AP) A bill that regulates insurance companies' use of credit ratings in making insurance coverage decisions was signed Wednesday by Gov. Frank Murkowski.

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.

On the Lindy, a breakdown is just a pleasant interlude
JUNEAU (AP) When the engine on Bill Shattenberg's 75-foot, wooden, ketch-rigged motor sailer exploded earlier this summer, he, his wife and their seven-person crew were 400 miles off the Mexican coast. They had calm, sunny weather, a three-month supply of food and plenty of cheap Panamanian beer.

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.

Alaska rise in sexually transmitted diseases reported
JUNEAU (AP) For the second consecutive year, Alaska reported the highest chlamydia rates in the country and state health officials say the numbers are growing.

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.

Paragliders soar with the eagles
JUNEAU (AP) ''This is what we call para-waiting,'' said Jack Kreinheder, clad in a black flight suit. Rainbow-colored Kevlar strings trailed, connecting him to a bright yellow wing made of ripstop nylon. He wore a backpack, attached to a harness, which held a foam pad to cushion him from any rough landings.

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.

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.

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

Democrats attack GOP laws through initiative
JUNEAU (AP) Democrats in the Legislature began the initiative process Wednesday in an attempt to short-circuit three laws passed by Majority Republicans.

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.

Chicago draws within one game of Royals
CHICAGO Bartolo Colon scattered three hits over eight shutout innings, and Roberto Alomar homered for the first time since being traded as the Chicago White Sox beat the Kansas City Royals 4-3 Wednesday to pull within a game of first place in the AL Central.

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.

Willis notches 11th win of season
ST. LOUIS Rookie Dontrelle Willis pitched eight impressive innings and Ivan Rodriguez homered as the Florida Marlins beat the St. Louis Cardinals 7-3 on Wednesday night.

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.

Business Briefs
Labor Department to discuss trade assistanceMinority small business opportunities existEducational material is welcomed for IFISH IIForaker Group to sponsor Leadership forum

Cell phone use beating out landlines
WASHINGTON The curly-corded phone by Brandon Fogel's bed was starting to seem like a relic.

Agrium included in Top 100 employers
Two Kenai Peninsula companies were among the top 100 employers in the state last year.

Millions of barrels of oil go into U.S. strategic reserves
WASHINGTON Despite precariously low oil supplies, the government has been pumping millions of barrels into its emergency reserve, which some critics charge has contributed to a surge in crude prices and kept gasoline costs high.

Art Briefs
Last summer student art workshops plannedArt classes offeredNominations sought for arts and humanities awardsMuseum seeks volunteers

Concert brings Homer pianist home
For accomplished Alaska pianist and piano instructor Dean Epperson, life as a child on a North Fork Road homestead offered few opportunities to see live performances of classical music or take lessons from a variety of instructors.

Terror in the theater: Play deals in dolls and dread
Like any director, Joe Rizzo hopes to have many eyes watching the performances of his new play. In that respect, he's starting out ahead of the game, since he already has 130 sets of eyes staring at his set every time his actors take the stage.

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

British novelist takes a look at Alaska psyche
Outsiders often wonder why anyone would willingly live in a place like Alaska, with its overwhelming winters and underwhelming civilized perks.

Parents of Oiler say thanks
To the Oilers baseball organization and the people of Kenai and Soldotna:

Killing longevity bonus checks takes money from merchants
It is amazing to me that more letters to the editor regarding actions in Juneau haven't been published. The governor has taken $250 a month from me. Really he did not take it from me, he took it from the merchants of Kenai. Guess I can stand it, but long-time friends in Anchorage without the $250 are going to lose their home.

Golf tourney support appreciated
A big thank you to the following businesses who helped sponsor Birch Ridge Golf Association's 12th Annual Grainge Memorial Senior Golf Tournament: Kenai Auto, Peninsula Plumbing & Heating, Dr. John F. Kobylarz, Freedom Realty, Wells Fargo Bank, Alaska Perry Fly and First American Title of Alaska.

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.

Too many bears; season needed
Does it ever occur to the Department of Fish and Game that the reason there are so many bears being killed in self defense is that the population is exploding?

Water thrower's sign protesting the war protesters rich in irony
Could someone explain something to me? I saw who I believe was Jeff Webster (I only know him through his picture printed in the paper during his recent trial for attacking grandmothers repeatedly) with a sign on his guide vessel in large letters which proclaimed "PROTESTERS SUCK."

Borough mayor should answer questions about winter games
With the imminent financial failure of other prominent facilities operated by "nonprofit" groups

Republicans in state, national office helping Alaskans keep their money
Compassionate, conservative Republicans are helping Alaska families financially. This is true at the state and federal level.

Newsmaker: Robbie Reiser
Robbie Reiser is the crew chief for NASCAR Winston Cup Series points leader Matt Kenseth.

Money Leaders
1. Jimmie Johnson $3,790,8802. Kurt Busch $3,555,0503. Michael Waltrip $3,297,685

Points Leaders
1. Matt Kenseth 3,1522. Dale Earnhardt Jr. 2,8663. Jeff Gordon 2,834

Study: Time is same for TV ads
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. A recent study shows there aren't more commercials during a NASCAR Winston Cup Series race since the $2.8 billion contract was signed with NBC, FOX, FX and TNT in 2001.

This Week's Race: Sirius Satellite at the Glen
Where and When

Race Schedule
February 16 to November 16, 2003

Pit strategy key to winning races
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. It used to be so simple on the NASCAR Winston Cup Series circuit: The fastest car usually won.

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.

Boughton to plead guilty
The woman charged with nine counts of cruelty to animals for keeping dozens of underfed, ungroomed dogs in Sterling, has told the Kenai district attorney's office she is no longer pleading not guilty.

Voters will decide on hospital bond
A proposed $49.9 million bond package needed to fund a major expansion project proposed for Central Peninsula General Hospital is now in the hands of the hospital service area voters.

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.

Conger charged in Seward shooting
Not guilty pleas were entered Wednesday on all charges against the Seward man accused of killing his friend and co-worker on July 19.

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.

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.

No property tax for Challenger Learning Center
The Challenger Learning Center of Alaska will have to find a source of operating funds somewhere besides the value of property owned by borough residents following a vote Wednesday morning by the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly.

Judge rules against Homer man
A federal judge last month ordered a Homer man to remedy recent discharges of fill material into Stariski Creek.

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

Technology shouldn't nix phone booths yet
To the American Public Communications Council that thinks the phone booth is headed for extinction: Please put that thought on hold.

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.

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."

Around the Peninsula
Neighborhood Watch meeting setWalk series continues at refugeVisitors center to host Bunny SwanWRCC run for women set for SaturdayKCHS to hold cheerleading tryoutsPFLAG schedules meetingImmunization clinics expanded in HomerHealthy Communities meeting slatedGirl Scouts plan garage sale

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

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

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.

Birch Ridge Report: Playing shirtless a no-no
Is this a great summer or what! All those in favor of extending the season keep your shirts on. Ah ha! Gotcha! So you know where I'm headed with this.

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

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.

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.

Sports Briefs
Skyview volleyball tryouts start MondayMariners send Nelson to New York for BenitezClijsters takes another step toward No. 1Hewitt upset; Agassi, Roddick winBucks introduce Porter as new coach

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.

US sweeps 100 meters for first time since '87
SANTO DOMINGO, Domini-can Republic Two U.S. sprinters gave the Americans a 100-meter sweep while, next door, the U.S. men's basketball team's poor shooting sent it home without a medal from the Pan American Games.

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

Bryant makes brief court appearance
EAGLE, Colo. NBA superstar Kobe Bryant made his first court appearance on a sexual assault charge Wednesday, uttering just two words during a seven-minute hearing that created a media frenzy in this quiet mountain town.

Chrysler Open field grows to 30 pros
With 30 pros and over $30,000 in prize money, the fifth annual Kenai Chrysler Open at the Kenai Golf Course will be bigger and better than ever.

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

Third Jaguars' player suffers illness from heat
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) The Jacksonville Jaguars had their third heat-related injury of the preseason Wednesday when wide receiver Donald Hayes dropped to a knee at the end of practice.

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.

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