Letters to the Editor

Posted: Monday, December 23, 2002

SPCA of the Kenai Peninsula clarifies its status, purpose

It has come to our attention that certain individuals are assuming that we are not legitimate, a 501(c)(3), or even affiliated with any of them.

We would like to clarify our status for those individuals.

First of all, our federal tax identification number is 92-0172969. We are a registered 501(c)(3) organization. We also have our corporation license with the state of Alaska and that is also easily verified.

As far as our affiliation with these other entities, absolutely not. We are all our own entities, and some of us can prove beyond the shadow of a doubt our status.

We are all supposed to be in this for the same

cause -- the animals! Unfortunately, people like to slander others for their own personal reasons. These individuals that have questions, or anyone

else for that matter, can certainly contact us and we will be happy to assist through our corporate attorney.

Stop the slander.

Have a very safe and happy holiday!

Michele DeMilta, CEO/founder, and the board of directors of the, SPCA of the Kenai Peninsula Inc.

Community Rivers coalition taking control of Anchor River

On Dec. 17, the Anchor Point Chamber of Commerce board of directors voted unanimously to object to the Community Rivers Planning Coalition's use of 30 percent of commercial operator's fees being spent on a CRPC-approved

"environmental education" program that CRPC will initiate in cooperation with a seasonal parks employee.

While graciously offering to consider chamber of commerce input, Jack Blackwell, the new parks ranger, refused to include any other non-profit entity control or oversight authority of this environmental educational service.

Instead, the chamber, and all other community organizations as well, was relegated to the role of observer.

Thus, there will be absolutely no form of ideological checks and balances available for the residents of the Anchor River area.

This is the first step toward losing control of the Anchor River drainage to CRPC's environmental dogma.

CRPC has begun its campaign to control the Anchor River watershed with this most recent attempt to gain a small foothold in the park with their "environmental education" program. The next step, which already has happened, will be for CRPC to solicit the parks department for privatizing the Anchor River park by turning over the administration and financing of the Anchor

River Park to prevent its "inevitable" closing. Once this happens, CRPC will be in total control of the environmental philosophy in regards to the Anchor River.

This influence will inevitably and quickly spread to the entire Anchor River watershed. The first casualty will be the boat launch service. The next casualties will include restricted access to the river for fisherman, the use of the river for boat launching, camping at the mouth of the river, increased and more restrictive building ordinances for those developing upstream riverfront properties, and restrictions and closures to ATV use in the upper reaches of the drainage. CRPC is quick to acknowledge that it desires community input. It goes out of its way to provide "forums" for public comment and suggestions.

In the end, however, it does things the way that it had always planned. All one needs to remember is how it handled the gravel pit issue.

Doug Ruzicka, Anchor Point

Will dental community help quench need or pour fuel on burning issue?

A very hot issue in the community these last weeks has surrounded the opening of and funding for Central Peninsula Health Centers Inc. dental clinic in Kenai.

There is no question about the hard work and energy members of this community have put into bringing this project to its current stage. I could write pages of commentary on the dedication of the individuals on the CPHC staff and board of directors, but the reason I'm writing is to:

No. 1: Applaud the members of the dental community for their attendance at the public meeting held Wednesday night at borough chambers. These are good people who do good things.

I have a great deal of respect for individuals who are faced with the unknown and care enough to learn more.

No. 2: Respond to a comment made on the radio program "Sound Off" Tuesday. A local dentist said something to the effect that this clinic would not be able to meet the entire need and made the analogy that CPHC's dental clinic would be "standing in front of a fire with a cup of water."

I, too, see the need for dental care in this community as a raging fire.

But, I would like to make a challenge to the dental community to step up to that fire with your cup (or bucket) of water, and side by side, the dental professionals (including those providers from the CPHC facility) form a bucket brigade.

During this season of love and forgiveness, I invite the dental community to choose: Will you come to the fire with a bucket or a match?

Debbie Standefer , Cohoe

Wrestling community calls foul against ASAA for shoddy treatment

We just finished a great display of marvelous athleticism at the 1A, 2A, 3A State Wrestling Tournament held in Homer.

Two hundred and twenty-four of the finest wrestlers from the small schools all over Alaska wrestled with each other for the title of state champion, the toughest man in the state no question. However, the Homer wrestling team was not involved.

Last year, Homer was in this tournament, Homer applied to host the state tournament and received the opportunity. Then ASAA in its wisdom changed the rules for wrestling again (about the fifth time in the same number of years), and Homer was back in the late season so it was not in the tournament it was hosting.

Without ire, the town of Homer hosted one of the finest state tournaments in recent memory.

Wrestling touches students in nearly every school in the state of Alaska. It is a tradition in Alaska even from ancient Inuit activities. Wrestling has always had more participants than any other sport in Alaska other than basketball, which has both boy and girl teams. It is a sport that allows all sizes to succeed even if they are not born to be 6 feet tall or 250 pounds. The rugged individualism that made America great and makes Alaskans such great Americans is accentuated in wrestling more than any other sport.

That is why it is so hard for us of the wrestling community to understand why ASAA, the athletic governing body of Alaska high school sports, continues to sacrifice the sport of wrestling on the altar of basketball.

Privately a member of the ASAA board confessed to one of the wrestling coaches that to ASAA: "Wrestling is the bastard sport of Alaska, and we would eliminate it if we could." Publicly they have said: "We do not want to hear anything from the wrestling community."

In recent times, the football community has said: We want another division in football. OK was the answer from ASAA. Basketball has asked for another division. OK was the answer. Volleyball asked for the same thing. OK.

Wrestling said: We need to adjust the schedule so we are not the only sport in all 50 states that has a divided season, small schools in the fall, big school in the winter. "We don't want to hear anything from wrestling," ASAA answers. Why? Because to redress your grievances we would have to adjust the basketball schedule and "heavens no, we can't do that."

Because of the use of facilities, unique travel challenges and culture of Alaska, it becomes impossible for small schools and large schools to have the same wrestling schedule if basketball continues on the schedule it has now. It's a schedule that ASAA moved the sport to several years ago.

Wrestling has asked that the basketball season be adjusted so it starts the first of November and ends the first of February. Wrestling could then go from about the first of February to April. Or, we could reverse the schedules.

Under these conditions, and only under these conditions, can wrestling have its season at the same time -- something the wrestling community feels is a necessity. But ASAA would have to adjust the basketball schedule, and it won't dare do that.

That would be sacrilege. Besides, wrestling is the bastard sport of Alaska. ASAA doesn't care if wrestling is suffering.

What can be done? I call for the state Board of Education to investigate ASAA and root out the obvious prejudice it displays toward wrestling. After all, ASAA is supposed to be an educational institution that cares about all classes of students. Now it seems ASAA cares only about the athletes that make it money and give ASAA prestige, namely basketball players.

It is high time that ASAA start representing all of the student athletes not just a select few.

Steve Wolfe, Wrestling referee, Homer

Mr. Ross may be skilled attorney, but he's wrong about church law

Friday's article concerning the unfortunate incident at St. John's Catholic Church in Homer quotes Anchorage attorney Wayne Ross in connection with what happened. Unfortunately, Mr. Ross is factually wrong on two accounts.

He describes Annemiek Brunklaus as "self-appointed to a position of authority." In fact, she was appointed to this position by the archbishop of Anchorage.

As well, whatever his skills as a civil lawyer may be, it is Mr. Ross who does not understand canon (church) law. By her appointment as administrator of the parish, Annemiek Brunklaus has the authority to regulate what happens in the church. She clearly has the authority to schedule events in the church and to see that such events are not disturbed.

In fact, there are civil court cases in other jurisdictions which have upheld the right of the church to remove those involved in disruptive behavior even if they attempt to characterize such disruptive behavior as prayer.

While this incident is unfortunate, the issue is the disruptive behavior on an individual, behavior the individual was given ample opportunity to correct. What has followed is the consequence of his behavior.

Steven C. Moore, Vicar General/Chancellor, Archdiocese of Anchorage

CIRI shareholder unhappy with board, wants dividend

I want to thank Roy Huhndorf, Robert Rude, Bill English and Harold Rudolp for helping the CIRI shareholders.

The majority board cut our quarterly dividend from $8 a share to $7 a share. Carl Marrs and his majority board also voted "no" on a special dividend of $10,000 per shareholder. The dividend would total $62 million. This amount is a drop in the bucket compared to what CIRI is worth.

CIRI has more than $400 million in cash. CIRI also has billions of dollars in assets, land and in subsurface ownership for oil, minerals, etc. on shore and off shore.

The next step the shareholders will take is to call for a special meeting to vote on the $10,000 dividend. I hope my fellow shareholders continue to vote the majority board members out of office.

I was surprised to learn that the majority board voted "no" on everything for the 6,200 shareholders and "yes" on everything for themselves.

Juanita O'Brien, CIRI shareholder, Nikiski

All letters to the editor, including those sent by e-mail, should contain the writer's name, phone number and address.

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