Friday, August 8, 2003

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.

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.

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.

Allstate halts new policies over mold decision
ANCHORAGE (AP) Allstate Insurance Co., among the state's largest providers of homeowners insurance, has stopped writing new policies while it battles the state Division of Insurance over how to limit its risk of mold-damage lawsuits.

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.

Temperature hits record-setting 75 degrees
ANCHORAGE (AP) Anchorage's temperature was a record-setting 75 degrees Thursday.

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

Police investigating Ask Alaska
ANCHORAGE Anchorage police are investigating the business operations of Ask Alaska Travel & Tours, a tour company that has filed for bankruptcy last week.

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.

Food Network series focuses on Juneau, Sitka and Haines
JUNEAU (AP) Staring at her face in the mirror of a small makeup compact while sitting in The Alaskan Hotel

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.

Juneau police first to try out Segway scooters
JUNEAU (AP) The Juneau Police Department is the first in Alaska to send some officers out on futuristic Segway Human Transporter vehicles.

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.

Group mulls Salcha flood solutions
FAIRBANKS (AP) About 100 Salcha residents will receive home flood-proofing kits.

Environmentalists call on Murkowski to hold Berner's Bay hearings
JUNEAU (AP) U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski in town for a panel discussion on Southeast Alaska economic issues was met by a throng of environmentalists who pressed her to hold local hearings on a land swap bill before Congress.

Bombings destroy two Anchorage mailboxes
ANCHORAGE (AP) Small bombs destroyed two mailboxes in an Anchorage neighborhood this week.

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.

Kenai borough rejects vote for Challenger Center support
KENAI (AP) The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly has turned down the possibility of local property tax support for the Challenger Learning Center.

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.

Peninsula to vote on hospital bonds
KENAI (AP) A proposed $49.9 million bond package to pay for major expansion of Central Peninsula General Hospital is in the hands of area voters.

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

Kodiak pink salmon runs may come in low
KODIAK (AP) The pink salmon run in Kodiak is leaning toward the low side, according to fishery officials.

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.

Bidding lively for ferry Bartlett
JUNEAU (AP) The online auction for a used Alaska Marine Highway ferry had garnered 23 bids as of Thursday afternoon, with the high bid up to $311,000.

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.

Sterling woman agrees to plea change in animal cruelty case
KENAI (AP) The Sterling woman charged with nine counts of cruelty to animals for keeping dozens of underfed, ungroomed dogs has told the Kenai district attorney's office she will enter a guilty plea to one count.

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.

Teller man held after stabbing
NOME (AP) A Teller man was arrested early this week after reportedly stabbing two people and threatening two others who tried to help the stabbing victims.

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.

Anchorage airport project should be done next summer
ANCHORAGE (AP) A new concourse under construction at Anchorage's international airport is on track to be finished next summer, airport and state Transportation Department officials said Wednesday.

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.

Truck smashes into art gallery
ANCHORAGE (AP) A truck smashed into a prominent downtown Anchorage art gallery early Thursday morning and police located the driver by late afternoon.

Plane crashes at Merrill Field with no injuries
ANCHORAGE (AP) A Stinson aircraft with two people on board crash-landed Wednesday at Merrill Field, officials said. No one was injured.

Hampton tops Brewers, takes sixth straight
MILWAUKEE Mike Hampton won his sixth straight decision and Vinny Castilla drove in three runs with a triple and a homer in the Atlanta Braves' 7-1 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday.

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.

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.

Yanks come back to defeat Rangers
NEW YORK Utilityman Enrique Wilson brought New York from behind with his third career grand slam and Jorge Posada delivered a bases-loaded single breaking a seventh-inning tie as the Yankees defeated the Texas Rangers 7-5 on Thursday.

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

Shop around for better rates on homeowners, auto insurance
NEW YORK (AP) With the cost of auto and homeowners insurance rising rapidly, it's a good idea to review policies to see if there are ways to reduce premiums.

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

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.

Upscale boomers help fuel home improvement market
NEW YORK (AP) As baby boomers get older, many are increasing their investments in their biggest assets, their homes.

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

MINI-VACATIONS: The one- or two-week summer vacation may soon become a fond memory for many American workers.

Cohos have yet to swarm area in significant numbers
Salmon fishing on the Kenai River is currently in a bit of a lull, as king season has officially ended and a rapidly dwindling number of sockeye salmon are moving into the river each day. Silver salmon are present in the Kenai, but anglers have been having little success finding them.

Drip irrigation isn't just for commercial gardeners anymore
NEW MARKET, Va. (AP) Here's some thirst-quenching information for gardeners facing stressed-out plants. Drip irrigation isn't just for commercial operators anymore.

Is that moose legal? Identifying legal spread takes practice
Legal or illegal? This issue appears at the outset to be a reasonably cut-and-dry question. However, even the most experienced hunters will know any explanation leaves something to be desired when push comes to shove and the decision to fire needs to be made.

Whether a 'gluck' or a 'mu-wah,' calling can draw out the big bulls
FAIRBANKS I had never heard a moose grunt, but there was no mistaking the sound.

Best way to find moose is to look for them
FAIRBANKS The best way to find moose, or any big game in Alaska, isn't to cover a lot of country with your feet, four-wheeler or boat.

Hunter education now required on peninsula
Alaska hunting regulations now require all hunters born after Jan. 1, 1986, to obtain a hunter education certificate in order to hunt in Game Management Units 7, 13, 14, 15 and 20.

Sheep hunt worth the work and effort
FAIRBANKS When North Pole's Matthew McCarter returned home from a 10-day sheep-hunting trip into the Wrangell Mountains without a sheep two years ago, his wife Dana felt bad for him.

More to hunting than the hunt
Sure, the highlight of many a hunting trip is the taking of an animal. But for many hunters, there's much more to the sport than that.

Deal with the meat now for good eating later
Bring as much tarp or plastic sheeting as you can; you can't have too many blue tarps on a hunting trip. That way, if you are caught in the rain you can build a small shelter to keep meat and yourself dry.

Sheep hunting on the Kenai Peninsula
Game Management Units 7 and 15 on the Kenai Peninsula have open seasons for sheep. Sheep are legal to hunt from Aug. 10 through Sept. 20.

2003 season looking good
It's just about that time again, when the fishing tackle gets put away and the hunting gear comes out of storage.

Taxidermy tips make for successful trophy
FAIRBANKS (AP) Here are some tips from Alaska taxidermists that hunters should consider if they are thinking about bringing a trophy home to mount on the wall:

Hunting on the Kenai Peninsula
Dan Presley of Ninlchk displays the 74 3/8-inch rack from a bull moose he took last season. Presley drew a permit to hunt the area between tusstumena Lake, the Russian River and Skilak Lake. Presley, hunting with his brother Keith and son Sen, packed into the area with seven horses and still didn't have enough room for all their gear and their trophy moose when it came time to return home.

Experts offer tips for buying binoculars, scopes
IDAHO FALLS, Idaho When Paul Payne needs to convince somebody about the importance of binoculars, he tells a story about a knob. With his $350 glasses glasses that he was extremely proud of he couldn't find an animal in the sagebrush about 2,000 yards away.

A lifelong hunter shares his wish for the future
I grew up as a hunter. Hunting is what I enjoyed doing more than most things what I dreamed about, what I saved my money for, what I did with my free time.

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.

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

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.

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.

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

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?

Legislature, governor only want to spend more taxpayer money
Once again I will attempt to explain what prompted the Longevity Bonus Program. This is for people who may not have been here 40 years or more.

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

Cities should honor Shane Webster with a welcome home parade
To the protesters,

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.

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

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.

Alyeska school open and ready for upcoming school year
As the state is not allowing them to advertise, Alyeska Central Parents are trying to get the word out that yes, they are still in operation, and accepting enrollment applications.

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.

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

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

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.

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.

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

Race Schedule
February 16 to November 16, 2003

Hospital budget in the black
Central Peninsula General Hospital Inc. is back in black, according to official reports released last 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.

Photo feature: Chillin'
Ray Johnston and Mark Gattenby chill out in a pond off Marathon Road in Kenai. Forecasts are calling for more sunny weather through Sunday.

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.

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

Man charged with sex abuse
A jury trial was scheduled for Oct. 6 in Kenai Superior Court for a man arraigned Thursday on two counts of sexual assault and two counts of sexual abuse of a minor.

Kenai rec center to open eventually
The good news is the Kenai City Council has made a decision that will reopen the Kenai Recreation Center. The bad news is it won't be until at least October.

Church will host classes starting this fall
Kenai Peninsula families will have yet another choice for their children's education this fall as North Kenai Baptist Church prepares to open a new, private Christian school.

Police seek tips in cases
Central Peninsula Crime Stoppers is offering rewards for information leading to the arrest of suspects involved in vehicle break-ins and a graffiti incident.

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.

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.

'Women's week' well under way
The Kenai Women's Resource and Crisis Center is running at full speed.

Woman charged with endangerment after kids sexually assaulted
One of two people named in a 44-count indictment involving the sexual abuse of three children in Anchor Point was arraigned in Kenai Superior Court on Thursday.

Center a valuable resource for the entire community
For women facing abusive domestic situations, it can seem as if there is no place to turn. Leaving an abusive relationship usually means picking up and leaving home, often with children in tow.

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.

Around the Peninsula
WRCC week-long fund-raiser continues Cooperative Extension to share recipes Immunizations available in Kenai, Soldotna Pioneers of Alaska to meet Open house planned for anniversary Final Safe Sitter course of summer slated Residents needed to apply for CPHC board Congressional mobile office tour planned

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

Monks celebrate half-century of community in Vermont
WESTON, Vt. (AP) From early childhood, many of the men were drawn to the prayer, rituals, and wisdom of the clergy; some aspired to be priests and to help others.

Russia's President Putin joins pilgrimage at restored Orthodox cathedral
DIVEYEVO, Russia (AP) President Vladimir Putin visited the closed city of Sarov, paying homage to one of Russian Orthodoxy's most revered saints, Seraphim.

Church Briefs
Native fellowship meets tonight Church plans yard sale Russian-America festival slated Convoy of Hope missionaries to speak Hardin to speak at Womens Aglow Church plans vacation Bible school

Ohio prison draws attention for religious programs
MARION, Ohio (AP) A warden credited with halting rampant violence and improving job training at Marion Correctional Institution is facing some criticism over religious programs.

World Lutheran delegates are unable to agree on same-sex marriages
WINNIPEG, Manitoba (AP) A meeting representing Lutheran churches around the world failed to reach consensus on same-sex marriages. A 17-page statement ended up acknowledging ''the diversity within the communion on matters of human sexuality.''

Top evangelical leaders attend memorial service for Campus Crusade's Bill Bright
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) Prominent evangelical leaders were among more than 3,000 people at a memorial service for Bill Bright, founder of Campus Crusade for Christ, who died July 19.

New book delves into world of Hasidic missionaries
NEW YORK (AP) There are just 3,000 Jews living in Alaska's 570,374 square miles, but Yossi and Esty Greenberg are there to serve them leading services, throwing Hanukkah parties, flying deep into the bush to train a young man for his bar mitzvah.

Assemblies of God loosens policy for clergy conducting second marriages
WASHINGTON (AP) The Assemblies of God, a Pentecostal denomination with 2.6 million followers, loosened policy on conducting second marriages for divorced members at its biennial General Council.

Lutherans defend pork roast after animal-rights lobby complains
CEDARBURG, Wis. (AP) Trinity Lutheran Church is defending a pork roast at its 160th anniversary festival after complaints from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, the militant animal rights and vegetarian lobby.

Church claims support for polygamy in new Supreme Court ruling
ST. GEORGE, Utah (AP) The U.S. Supreme Court ruling overturning Texas' sodomy law is cited by attorneys defending a member of the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

Recognizing God's gifts can lead to blessing others in return
The other day, a woman I'll call Susan, who has called the Love INC help line in the past, called again. This time Susan wasn't asking for help but wanted to be able to help someone else.

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.

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.

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.

Tennis father arrested for drugging son's foes
PARIS Just how far parents might go to help children reach the sporting elite has become shockingly evident in France with the arrest of a man on suspicion he spiked the drinks of his 16-year-old son's tennis rivals with a prescription drug.

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

Patriots defense stifles New York in exhibition
FOXBORO, Mass. Newcomer Rosevelt Colvin set the tone by forcing a fumble on his second play with the New England Patriots and their defense never let up.

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.

USA teams dominate at Pan Ams
SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic (AP) American teams showed power and perfection Thursday at the Pan American Games.

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.

Kenai Central volleyball starts Monday
The Kenai Central High School volleyball team will hold their first practice Monday from 3 to 6 p.m. at the high school gym. Athletes must have a current physical and all paperwork completed before they can practice.

Football season set to roll
The prep football season gets under way Saturday with all six Kenai Peninsula teams in action.

International leader scores 10 birdies
CASTLE ROCK, Colo. Davis Love III tied a tournament record with 10 birdies and held the lead in the weather-delayed first round of The International on Thursday.

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