Tuesday, October 9, 2007

ACT wants 'No' vote on ordinance
Thomas Jefferson said it best, "The price of liberty is eternal vigilance." When no one is watching, government can become emboldened, even confident that legal boundaries can be stretched with impunity. This is why citizen participation in government is so important.

Reader: Standing alone tough to do
As a former state legislator for this area, I worked diligently at serving the good people of the Kenai-Soldotna area answering constituent's complaints, resolving government matters and asking tough questions. But after one term in office and experiencing the actions of some now being brought into the public light, I decided not to run again because my family needed me at home and the strong belief that I ran and won my position in office on the promise I made not to touch the permanent fund.

Reader urges voters to check out candidates' stance on guns
I urge everyone who intends to vote in the 2008 presidential election to investigate each candidates position on the issues, especially on gun control. Yes, the U.S. has experienced many tragic crimes that involve guns, but to remove guns from law-abiding citizens is not the answer. We need to enforce the laws that are already on the books and to make sure the criminals are punished accordingly.

Ramras needs to rethink stance
In response to the article in the Peninsula Clarion last month titled "Lawmaker alleges bribery" I would like to respond.

Tree lover applauded
Kudos to Kellie Kelso ("Kenai woman to defend trees at council meeting, Clarion, Oct. 2) for caring about saving our trees. I am appalled that developers so often seem to have little or no regard for saving our trees. Equally appalling is that the city council seems to disregard this issue also. Some loss of trees is no doubt necessary when development occurs, but the city council should negotiate with developers to save trees whenever possible.

Petition charge gone; hearing planned
A controversial $100 filing fee has been dropped from proposed amendments to the borough's procedures for handling initiative and referenda matters.

Council seat up for grabs
After counting absentee and questioned ballots, the Soldotna Canvass Board tally shows a run-off election will be needed to determine a winner in the much contested race for city council seat D, formerly held by Jane Stein.

Something to talk about
As the temperatures are starting to tickle the 20-degree mark, it means two things: it won't be long before the snow flies, and it's once again time for the Winter Speaker Series, sponsored by the Kenai River Center and the Kenai Watershed Forum.

Library strikes novel idea
While the Kenai Community Library encourages people of all ages to read, it is currently seeking younger readers to take part in an upcoming graphic novel workshop.

No 55, 35 stays
Economic development took a small step backward in Kenai last week as council members failed to extend commercial lease terms on city-owned property within the airport reserve from 35 to 55 years.

Singing in the holiday season
Some of the best songs ever composed are Christmas carols; at least that's what Linda Duce thinks.

Mine risks forum slated
The potential for detrimental impacts to the environment posed by development of major mines near Iliamna and Chuitna will be the central topic of two public forums sponsored by the Homer group Cook Inlet Alliance.

Big fish, big bucks
Chugiak's Jerry Saunders waited more than three months to hear if his monster halibut would hold up to win the Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby.

Louis B. Shilling
Longtime Alaskan and Nikiski resident Louis B. Shilling died Saturday, Oct. 6, 2007, at his home in Nikiski. He was 65.

Richard 'Skip' W.M. Hoskins
Longtime Soldotna resident, Richard 'Skip" W.M. Hoskins died Thursday, Oct. 4, 2007, at Central Peninsula Hospital in Soldotna after a six-month battle with lung cancer. He was 62.

Efforts benefit all river users: Good work can't be overshadowed by political gamesmanship
It's a sad day when good work by professional organizations and volunteers is manipulated into front-page and editorial page scandal. The reality is a lot of good was accomplished with the $3 million Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund (PCSRF) money spent on the Kenai and Russian rivers.

Pursuing a new cooperative: MEA asking state regulatory commission to consider power pool
In late August, the Matanuska Electric Association (MEA) filed a petition with the Regulatory Commission of Alaska (RCA), asking the commission to explore the formation of a traditional Generation and Transmission Cooperative (G&T), or alternatively, the creation of a genuine power pool for all regulated electric cooperatives in the Railbelt.

Soldotna Community News
It's that time again. Don't forget to get your flu shot. If you don't, you may wish you would've if you're miserable in bed this winter. The Soldotna Senior Citizens Center will have flu shots available for seniors Oct. 16. There's no charge for Medicare patients, but for those who are not, the fee will be based on a sliding scale. For more information and to set an appointment, call 262-2322.

Kenai Community News
Hello Neighbors. It's that time of year once again for all of us to raise our arms to the skies above Alaska and offer a heartfelt thanks to the powers that be and have been, for the bounty of oil and investment savvy that allowed me to call that 800 number at my bank last week and offer up a loud "Wahoo" at the newly deposited plus in my savings account the permanent fund dividend.

Kasilof Community News
Halloween lurks in the twilight of October and casts a shadow across the whole month. Kasilof can be a foggy river in the fall ghastly, really.

Mrs. Smalley goes to Washington
From left to right, Jennifer Adzima of Anchorage, Pat Reynaga of Anchorage, Congressman Don Young, Emily Nenon of Anchorage and Susan Smalley of Kenai met with Young in his office in Washington, D.C. prior to the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) vote. Congress voted on a Senate amendment so when it passed, it returned to the Senate where the entire bill was voted on, with Senators Ted Stevens and Lisa Murkowski voting "yes" and was sent to President George Bush for signature. The women were in Washington D.C. representing the American Cancer Society Action Network, visiting with their legislative delegation about a variety of issues, one being the SCHIP legislation. The group was in the visitors gallery when it was passed. The State Children's Health Insurance Program comes to the states to administer similar to a block grant. Alaska has administered its in the past decade through Denali KidCare.

A soldiers view
Editor's note: Periodically the Clarion has printed biographies and notes from soldiers stationed in northern Kuwait with the 3rd Battalion, Alaska Army National Guard.

Nikiski Community News
Hello to all my Nikiski neighbors.

Around the Peninsula
Honor choir to perform Gardeners to meet Nutrition classes set Troop homecoming meeting set 4-H'ers to gather Dessert bakers sought Special Olympics fundraiser set to dish Drug abuse council to meet Hospice training, events set PenDOG classes to start

Ninilchik Community News
Julie Welch, director of the Ninilchik Senior Citizens Center reported that the United Way Benefit pie auction and dinner brought in more than $2,300. She would like to thank everyone who attended the dinner and for those who donated pies and items for the auction which made the fundraiser a success.

Sterling Community News
I have had several calls in the past few weeks from folks who have problems with stray dogs causing problems on their property.

Around the Peninsula
Pingpong continues After-school club begins PFLAG to meet Volcanoes to be discussed Swim lessons to make a splash Fish advisory committee to meet Peaceful people to gather Thursday Web log training offered Pie auction fundraiser set Women bowlers to meet CPHC board meeting set Counseling group seeks members Mine toxins to be discussed Domestic violence workshop planned

Around the District
Aurora Borealis Charter Connections home-school IDEA home-school Kalifornsky Beach Elementary Kaleidoscope School of Arts and Science Kenai Central High Kenaitze Head Start Mountain View Elementary Ninilchik School Nikiski Middle-High Nikiski North Star Redoubt Elementary Sears Elementary Skyview High School Soldotna High Soldotna Elementary Soldotna Middle Sterling Elementary Tustumena Elementary Wings Christian Academy

Little squirts
Cooper Landing Volunteer Fire fighters show students at Cooper Landing Elementary School how to properly handle fire-fighting equipment Sept. 21 as part of hands-on learning day. The day began with a fire drill at the school and the arrival of two fire trucks. Assistant Fire Chief Mike Smith, along with firefighters Ken Green, Keith Doroff and Steve Lipscomb, worked with school Principal Tommy Gossard to give students experience with fire safety and the equipment firefighters use to help protect the community. Students were able to wear turnouts (uniforms) due to a donation from a community member. They also were able to pump water and work alongside the firemen. The fire crew showed students the equipment on the trucks and let them climb on and pretend to drive the truck. Smith gave each child fire smart books, a fire hat and talked to them about what they should do in case of a fire and how to be safe at home and school. He also explained National Fire Safety Week and reminded students to check their home fire alarms, CO2 detectors, have a family evacuation plan, a outside meeting place in the event of a fire and to always be aware of potential fire hazards in their homes.

W hen I was in middle school, there were two things that everyone seemed to be excited for when they turned 14 getting a learner's permit and a job. The permit and the job seemed to be huge symbols of growing up and that we weren't children anymore.

Kenai Peninsula College embraces distance education
Last May, nine members of arts and sciences division, six full-time and three part-time faculty, participated in a week-long distance education symposium sponsored by the Alaska Educational Innovations Network. According to Dr. Barbara Christian the intensive workshop served to further faculty knowledge and skill with online delivery systems. Two Web-based delivery methods were featured; Blackboard, an asynchronous delivery method, and Elluminate Live, a synchronous, real-time delivery method.

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