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SitNews - Stories in the News - Ketchikan, Alaska

January 21, 2006

Front Page Photo by Lisa Thompson

Front Page Photo By Lisa Thompson

Front Page Photo: Fairweather - Ketchikan enjoyed a Fairweather view as the NOAA Fairweather ship sailed south past Annette Island earlier this week. After 18 months of refurbishment at a cost of $18.3 million, the ship was reactivated back into the NOAA fleet in August of 2004, and is now one of the most technologically advanced survey vessels in the world. - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006


Ketchikan: Chamber Clarifies Position Regarding Member's Remarks - Friday the Board President of the Greater Ketchikan Chamber of Commerce clarified the Chamber's position regarding inappropriate statements made by one of its members, J.C. Conley, at the organization's luncheon meeting Wednesday.

Board President Joe Johnston said, "We understand that some comments made at the meeting this week regarding Newtown development were of concern to some of our members and members of the general public." - More...
Friday PM - January 20, 2006

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Alaska: Alaska university system gets high marks in survey By JULIA O'MALLEY - Alaskans are feeling better about the University of Alaska system, but people in Southcentral are less likely to feel positively than those in other regions, reports a new survey released by University President Mark Hamilton.

"The Southcentral region, particularly Anchorage and Mat-Su, are booming in terms of population and growth, with numerous other competing sources of cultural, civic, educational and recreational interests," said Megan Olson, assistant vice chancellor of university relations at the University of Alaska Anchorage, in a statement.

"The university is the town center in many rural areas, and there is quite simply less competing for attention," she said.

Overall, more respondents gave the university favorable responses than when the survey was last done in 1999. The most favorable ratings came from the Interior.

"The major theme is that people's opinions have improved," said Heather Haugland, an analyst with McDowell Group, based in Juneau, Alaska, which did the survey in 2005.

"Anchorage tended to have a less positive view, and that's also true in Southcentral. . . . although they give less positive ratings, it's still positive."

Four out of five Alaskans believe the University of Alaska is very important to the state, and nine out of 10 parents of school-age children said they would encourage their children to attend UA. Since 1999, the number who said they would strongly encourage their children to attend increased from 22 percent to 38 percent. The number who said the university was very important grew 12 percentage points. - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

National: Plenty of immigration reform bills, but will one pass? By MICHAEL DOYLE - You can't track the immigration debate without a scorecard.

Literally every week, lawmakers introduce their latest bid to reform immigration and improve border security. The names alone give their flavor.

The Reducing Immigration to a Genuinely Healthy Total Act. That's RIGHT, for short. The Secure Our Nation's Interior Act. The Enforcement First Immigration Reform Act. The Secure America and Orderly Immigration Act. And so on.

But while it's easy to write an immigration bill and give it a stern name, it's awfully hard to pass one. That will be the real challenge confronting Congress this year.

"We're probably going to end up with a series of bills - one that has border security enforcement, and one that has guest workers," Rep. Dan Lungren, R-Calif., predicted. "A comprehensive approach is necessary; the question is, how do you get there?" - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

National: Expected ad wars over Alito fizzle By MARGARET TALEV - What happened to the multimillion-dollar, take-it-to-the-streets fight that activists predicted over the future of the Supreme Court?

When John Roberts arrived at his confirmation hearings in September, with his polish, his encyclopedic memory and his bipartisan, legal-establishment fan club, he faced no filibuster and an abbreviated advertising campaign by liberal critics who opposed him. With little need to defend Roberts in a Republican-controlled Senate, conservative groups conserved their war chests and waited. - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

National: Bush administration proposes higher mine safety penalties By KAREN MACPHERSON - Two years ago, Labor Secretary Elaine Chao urged Congress to nearly quadruple the fines for the most "egregious" safety violations in the nation's mines, raising them to $220,000 from $60,000.

In her budget testimony last year, Chao again asked Congress to increase the maximum fines levied by the Mine Safety and Health Administration, which is part of the Labor Department. - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

Fairbanks scientists wired into erupting Augustine
Jon Dehn of the Alaska Volcano Observatory looks at satellite images a few hours after an explosive eruption on Augustine Volcano in Cook Inlet on January 17, 2006.
Photo by Ned Rozell

Alaska: Fairbanks scientists wired into erupting Augustine By NED ROZELL - A snow-capped mountain 418 miles away has busied up the new year for some Fairbanks scientists.

After working the Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend, Jon Dehn hurried back into the office Tuesday morning when a seismologist called him to say Augustine Volcano was again rumbling. Dehn drove into work at the Geophysical Institute at the University of Alaska Fairbanks. The institute is home of the Fairbanks branch of the Alaska Volcano Observatory, a joint program of the United States Geological Survey, the Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys and the Geophysical Institute. On his computer, Dehn called up a NOAA weather satellite image that showed a hotspot at the 4,000-foot summit of the cone-shaped volcano. Dehn, a remote-sensing specialist at the volcano observatory, called his AVO colleagues in Anchorage and told them that the satellite, orbiting Earth about 850 miles above the mountain and sending information to a satellite dish at the Geophysical Institute, had confirmed the eruption. - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

Americorp VISTA volunteer, Jessica Reveri
Photograph by Marie L. Monyak

Ketchikan: VISTA Volunteer talks about service in Ketchikan By MARIE L. MONYAK - Americorp VISTA volunteer, Jessica Reveri, who has been in Ketchikan for the past eleven months, spoke before the Greater Ketchikan Chamber of Commerce at their luncheon Wednesday.

Reveri's term of volunteer service in Ketchikan will be ending in two weeks and she spoke about the work she has been doing while in Ketchikan. Speaking only briefly, Reveri said she worked with the Ketchikan Non-Profit Services Program whose broad intent is to develop a program of services available for residents. - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

Ketchikan: Local Artist Featured in UA's Museum of the North Exhibit - Ketchikan artist, Mary Ida Henrikson, is featured in the University of Alaska Museum of the North's current special exhibit, A New Sense of Wonder. The exhibit features recent works by more than 40 artists who donated their works to the first fundraiser for the museum's expansion, the 1995 Sense of Wonder art auction.



letter Sometimes you can't 'Latch On to the Affirmative'. By June Allen - Saturday PM
letter Bridge to "somewhere" By Rick Grams - Saturday PM
letter Alaska State Senate to Examine University by Robert D. Warner - Saturday PM
letter VISTA Volunteer By MJ Turek - Saturday PM
letter Bridges to the future... By Don Hoff Jr. - Saturday PM
letter Ketchikan's priorities? By Don Hoff Jr. - Saturday PM
letterApology? By Tom LeCompte - Saturday PM
letter Treatment of guests is reprehensible By John Stewart - Saturday PM
letter Disgraceful Behavior By Charlotte L. Glover - Saturday PM
letter Lack of signage greatest problem By Charlotte Tanner - Saturday PM
letter Newtown Plans By Betty Lee Lien Marl McLendon - Saturday PM
letter Thank You By Tonia (Lahmeyer) Nebl - Saturday PM
letter Uncompassionate By Tommy Bergeron - Saturday PM
letterSTIP & Bridges to the Future By Mike Barton - Friday PM
letter We need to work together By Bobbie McCreary - Friday PM
letter Chamber guests deserve a public apology By Joann Flora  - Friday PM
letter Emerald Bay timber sale
By Tom and Jackie Timm - Friday PM
letter The being "uncompassionate" issue By Theresa Cullen - Friday PM
letterAntifreeze, batteries, shot gun shells... By Jerry Cegelske - Friday AM
letter Intoxicated driver = Possible tragedy By John Maki - Friday AM
letter Re: "Uncompassionate towards suffering" By Mark Neckameyer - Friday AM
letter KIC election rules By Elroy C. Edenshaw, Jr. - Friday AM
letter American Pit Bull Terrier Misunderstood By Tina Greenup - Friday AM
letter Let's Save for a Rainy Day! By Robert D. Warner - Thursday
letter PRIVILAGE OR RIGHT? By Tony Alenskis - Thursday
letter Uncompassionate towards suffering By Tommy D. Bergeron - Thursday
letter Ye Olde "Anti-Bridge" By Kevin Mackey - Thursday
letter Throwing rocks from a distance By Rick Watson - Thursday
letterAn expose on the history and controversy surrounding commercial herring management in Southeast Alaskan fisheries (excluding Sitka Sound)- A Public Point of View By Andy Rauwolf - Tuesday
letter What do Tourists think of Ketchikan, and how can we improve it? By Bobbie McCreary- Tuesday
letter More Viewpoints/ Letters
letter Publish A Letter

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Saturday, January 21, 2006, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. - Public Hearing - Petition by the Ketchikan Gateway Borough for Legislative Review - annexation of approximately 4,701 square miles to the Ketchikan Gateway Borough. City Council Chambers, 334 Front Street, Ketchikan, AK
Summary & Annexation Petition & Exhibits

Tuesday, January 24, 2006, from 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm - Zoning for the Newtown Area Commercial & Residential meeting is scheduled - 640 Park Avenue (across from the American Legion).
pdfMore meeting information

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January 2006
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"We thought that an exhibit featuring recent works by those same artists would be a wonderful retrospective for the museum's new special exhibit gallery," says museum director Aldona Jonaitis. "Just as there was ten years ago, there's an incredible diversity of styles, subject matters and media in this exhibit. I'm thrilled that Mary was able to be a part of it." - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

Washington Calling: Thinning out the Guard? ... The Good Ship Stockdale ... More By LANCE GAY - Expect much harrumphing from governors over Pentagon plans to save money by thinning out National Guard troops.

The brass aren't happy at restrictions put on movements of Guard troops to hot spots like Afghanistan and Iraq, and want to redirect money away from the Guard to regular forces that can be more readily deployed. The Pentagon says the plan, to be included in next year's budget, would leave the Guard with a force sufficient to deal with natural disasters, civil unrest and other domestic emergencies.

But governors of the states and Guard leaders are gearing up to fight the plan with a lobbying blitz in Congress aimed at keeping Guard forces at current levels.


Swains looking for Valentine's Day goodies take note: the bloom is off the idea of low-cal chocolate. Confectionary News, a publication that tracks the candy industry, reports that sales of low-cal and sugarless chocolate fell unexpectedly by a third last year. Your message this 2/14: If you are going for something really sinful, don't be chintzy with the sweeter parts.


It's not just members of Congress who are being given luxury vacations at spas and golfing resorts. The Senate Finance Committee is demanding that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid explain the lavish partying that went on last year at the exclusive Don CeSar Beach Resort in Florida.

The session was supposedly a Tri-Regional Conference at which contractors earning more than $300 million in federal contracts were to discuss improving Medicare and Medicaid services. Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, said his office found post-conference pictures posted on the Internet depicting lavish dinners, dessert buffets and beach parties that had nothing to do with federal programs for the poor and elderly. - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

The Week In Review: Bin Laden re-emerges in audiotape - Osama bin Laden broke a yearlong silence and threatened new attacks against the United States in an audiotape broadcast by the Arab network al-Jazeera. On the tape - which was authenticated by the CIA as the first public communication from bin Laden since December 2004 - the terrorist leader also offered the possibility of a truce under unspecified conditions. The Bush administration dismissed the suggestion as propaganda.

Supreme Court upholds assisted suicide

The Supreme Court backed Oregon's physician-assisted-suicide law, refusing to punish doctors who help terminally ill patients die. The justices ruled 6-3 that the Bush administration improperly tried to use a drug law to prosecute Oregon doctors who prescribe overdoses under the 1997 state law.

Lawsuits challenge eavesdropping program

Two leading civil-rights groups sued the Bush administration to stop its domestic spying program. The two lawsuits, filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights, were the first major court challenges to the eavesdropping. The groups said they want to learn whether the operation was used to monitor defense lawyers, journalists, scholars, political activists and other Americans with ties to the Middle East. The Justice Department said it would fight the lawsuits on national-security grounds.

Gore calls for special counsel

Former Vice President Al Gore urged the appointment of a special counsel to investigate President Bush's authorization of domestic surveillance by the National Security Agency. In a speech on the holiday honoring Martin Luther King Jr., Gore charged that Bush's record on civil liberties posed a "grave danger" to America's constitutional freedoms. Gore said that "what we do know" about the spying program "virtually compels the conclusion that the president of the United States has been breaking the law, repeatedly and insistently."

First mission to Pluto

The fastest spacecraft ever launched took off on the first mission to Pluto - a 3 billion-mile trip to study the planet and examine mysterious objects at the outer edges of the planetary system. The New Horizons probe was expected to reach Jupiter in just over a year and make it to Pluto by 2015. Pluto is the solar system's last unexplored planet. - More...
Saturday AM - January 21, 2006

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