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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
February 15, 2016

Front Page Feature Photo By A. BLAKE BROWN

Winter's Day
A beautiful sunny and mild day at the Coast Guard Beach last weekend. This popular beach is located approximately 14 miles north of Ketchikan.
Front Page Feature Photo By A. BLAKE BROWN ©2016

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Ketchikan: 15 indicted by Ketchikan Grand Jury on various drug charges - Following the conclusion of investigations, a Ketchikan Grand Jury last week indicted fifteen individuals involving the alleged sale of heroin, meth, Oxycodone, and other controlled substances. - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016

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Southeast Alaska: Wrangell Physician Sentenced to 20 Years For Distributing And Receiving Child Pornography - A Wrangell physician was sentenced this month to 20 years in prison for receiving and distributing child pornography, a lifetime term of supervised release, and a $25,000 fine, according to U.S. Attorney Karen. L. Loeffler.

Greg Alan Salard, 54, of Wrangell, Alaska, was found guilty on July 28, 2015, after a six-day trial before Chief U.S. District Judge Timothy M. Burgess.

According to evidence presented at trial, between June and October 2014, during an FBI investigation concerning the trading of child pornography using peer-to-peer (P2P) software, investigators discovered that an Internet Protocol (IP) address linked to Salard was used on multiple occasions to share files of known child pornography. The evidence also showed that a laptop computer subsequently seized from Salard’s home contained the same P2P software used to share one of the images identified during the investigation.

Testimony regarding a forensic examination of the laptop demonstrated that the computer contained the child pornography video identified by investigators, as well as evidence of hundreds of other files of child pornography; the jury reviewed the contents of eleven of those files. The testimony also showed that multiple searches had been run on the laptop for a term associated with child pornography, and videos of child pornography had been viewed on the computer. Finally, the evidence introduced at trial revealed that a program designed to erase or “wipe” computer files had been used multiple times, including on the morning the search warrant was executed. - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016

Fish Factor: Fishing lives and wives By LAINE WELCH - Fishing lives and fishing wives are set to be showcased for a national audience; one as a documentary and the other, on reality television.

The first, an hour-long feature called Last Man Fishing, focuses on the lifestyles and challenges facing our nation’s small-scale fishermen.

“We’re from Indiana and we realized there is a disconnect between the consumer and where their fish is coming from,” said JD Schuyler who is co-producing the documentary with his wife, Kelley. “We want to bridge the gap of people appreciating seafood, while also understanding the struggles of the small scale fishermen.”

The Schuylers, who have long been involved in the sustainable foods movement, first made the connection with fishermen/co-owners of Sitka Salmon Shares, a “boat to doorstep” seafood company with hubs in the Midwest.

“Working with them allowed us to learn a lot about small scale fishing and see some of the struggles some have,” JD said. “With our historical connections with food and small-scale farming, it really connected with us and motivated us to start the project.”

“We’ve learned a lot about how fisheries are being privatized, and how that keeps the younger fishermen from entering. It really makes it difficult for people to get into the trade,” he added.

The team has since filmed fishing lives in Kodiak, St. Paul Island, Maine and the next stop is the Gulf of Mexico.

“A lot of people are losing their livelihood and the coastal communities are losing families and generations of practices and culture,” echoed Kelley. On the flip side, the documentary highlights how many fishermen are now making their own inroads with direct sales to chefs and other consumers, and learning how to get the most value out of their fish.

“We’ve seen that in Southeast Alaska and in Maine, and I think that is empowering small scale fishermen,” she added.

To help tell their story, the film makers have launched a $35,000 Kickstarter campaign in hopes of getting Last Man Fishing on the national film festival circuit next year.

“This isn’t about us making money,” the Schuylers said. “It’s about us telling an important story that is so meaningful to fishermen and communities. We are thankful to be a part of it.” - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016

Ketchikan Education:
Ketchikan students prepare for GCI Alaska Academic Decathlon - Students from across Alaska will gather in Anchorage Feb. 25–27 to represent their schools and compete at the 31st Annual GCI Alaska Academic Decathlon at the Hilton Anchorage Hotel. Students from Ketchikan, Craig and Metlakatla will be among the participating teams.

Students competing from the Ketchikan Gateway Borough School District are Lora Starr, Gabrial Canfield, Largim Zhuta, Sage Acteson, Jesalyn Cachero, Ingrid Anzueto, Elizabeth Vossen, Lydia Sumrall, Max Varela, Emme Andersen and Adrian Antonio. They are led by coach Peter Stanton. Students from Craig City Schools are Robert (Wyatt) Hilder, Brynna Ververs, Baylee Schneider, Tristan Douville, Tahren Torsey, Noah Castle, Liam Price, Alex Price, Duane Wood, Hannah Atland and Kaylie Yorgensen. They are led by coach Jessica Hughes. Representing Metlakatla High School are Madisyn Janes, Barak Wahl, Jeanette Kaleikau-Buxton, Alana Williams, Cameron Commack, Raquel Schoolcraft, Alonzo Leisholm, Tim Williams, DaShaun Atkinson, Collin Williams, Cheyenne Marsden and Shae-Lynn Hudson. This team is coached by Kathy Anderson and Jason Webber.

The Academic Decathlon was created to provide high school students with opportunities to experience the challenges of rigorous team and individual academic competition. Each participating student will compete in 10 events: economics, essay, art, interview, math, music, science, social science, speech and language and literature. Students also participate in an event called the Super Quiz, a team competition featuring a student relay. It’s one of most exciting events in the competition and the only event that is open to the public.

The program offers students the chance to compete in non-athletic events while building relationships and fostering a positive inter-school community. The Academic Decathlon is uniquely designed to include students of all academic abilities and achievement levels by requiring each nine-member team to consist of three “A” students (honor division), three “B” students (scholastic division) and three “C” or below students (varsity division). - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016


Alaska Science:
Ice worms: enigmas of the north By NED ROZELL - Recent research on the ice worm has shone some light on the tiny creature that appears when the sun sets on warmish glaciers.

Ice worms: enigmas of the north

An ice worm on Bering Glacier
Photo by Chris Larsen.

Few people have seen ice worms, but they are not mythical. Wispy and less than one inch long, ice worms live on glaciers, wriggling to the surface at night and sometimes lingering in meltwater pools during the day. They seem to be dormant during the winter. No one knows how long they live, or if they might have the ability to resurrect themselves after their bodies dry out.

The worms are both hardy and delicate. They live on ice, but will dissolve in the heat of your palm. Scientists in Washington once estimated there were more ice worms on a glacier there than there are humans on Earth. An ecologist once searched a good portion of the Alaska Range and found none.

That scientist, Roman Dial of Alaska Pacific University, condensed much of what is known about the ice worm in a recent paper.

Ice worms live on glaciers overlooking the Pacific coast from the Kenai Peninsula all the way down to Oregon. There is an unexplained absence of the worms in what seems like suitable habitat on the Juneau Icefield and glaciers near there.

The farthest north Dial found ice worms live was in the Chugach Mountains behind Anchorage. After hearing mountaineers' reports of seeing ice worms in the Alaska Range, Dial visited the reported locations and other likely spots. He squinted at patches of wet snow on the glaciers in similar places he'd seen worms on other glaciers. He and his partners saw no worms on the entire traverse. - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016

Science of play at heart of healthier, happier humans

Exercise scientist Robert “Trey” Coker of the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ Institute of Arctic Biology gets dogged about good health.
Photo by Robert “Trey” Coker

Arctic Biology:
Science of play at heart of healthier, happier humans By MARIE THOMS - Play literally shapes our bodies and our brains. When we play we’re less stressed, better adjusted and more creative. Play is as basic a natural phenomenon as sleep.

When play isn’t a regular part of children’s everyday world, the negative effects can be long lasting and have profound implications for their lifetime health and the health of their community.

“When you can start to view physical activity as part of your normal everyday life, you develop a stronger sense of well-being for yourself and your community,” said University of Alaska Fairbanks exercise scientist Robert “Trey” Coker. He studies nutrition, physical activity and cold exposure, and their effects on health and longevity, at the UAF Institute of Arctic Biology.

Coker will speak about his research during the Positive Leadership for Active Alaskan Youth Summit in Anchorage Feb. 19-20, 2016.

Coker’s research subjects run the gamut from couch potatoes to extreme athletes, from kids to the elderly. His work also addresses special-needs groups, including military members, firefighters and people hospitalized or incapacitated due to injury or illness. - More....
Monday PM - February 15, 2016



Columns - Commentary

jpg Mary Lynne Dahl

MONEY MATTERS: STOCK MARKET ROLLER COASTER RIDE: IS IT AN OPPORTUNITY OR A PROBLEM? By MARY LYNNE DAHL, CFP® - If you are an investor, you probably have some financial goals. Security. Freedom. Wealth. Business ownership. Philanthropy. But when the market starts a roller coaster ride up and down, those goals are at risk. It is unsettling. You may experience anxiety and fear when you read or hear the media talking as if the world is coming to an end, the economy is in chaos, the markets are crashing and your hard-earned money is evaporating. Your instincts are to pull your money out of your investments and bury it in a coffee can in the yard. If this is the case, you have now encountered the greatest risk to your financial well-being……yourself.

Curbing this instinct to panic and act is hard. You can only do it if you understand the principles of using the volatility of the markets to your advantage. One principle is learning how to focus. Another is to have a common-sense strategy. A third principle is to learn how to harness market volatility to your own advantage. All of these principles will increase your ability to reach your goals.

Volatility is the ups and downs of the market. Prices go up, prices go down. This is not new; they always have and always will move up and down. The degree of volatility is not constant, however. Changes in prices can move up or down a lot, or very little; the swings can be extreme or minimal. - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016

DAVE KIFFER: Happy EKG to Me! - I celebrated my recent birthday by getting an electrocardiogram!

Well, it wasn't on my exact birthday, but it was a couple of days later so that counts. I was still basking in the glow all those good birthday wishes when I got strapped down in a comfy room in the ER and "inspected" and "detected" to steal a couple of lines from "Alice's Restaurant."

Which is an appropriate thought, because "AR" was an all-time great Thanksgiving holiday movie and our family has an affinity for visiting the "ER" on holidays.

When Liam was little, he used to always get ear infections on Christmas and New Year's and Presidents' Day. Then Charlotte got sick on Valentine's Day. And I broke a foot on the Fourth of July. One time we even visited the ER on St. Patrick's Day, but it was not from any over-imbibing of the green. It was me "partying hearty" with gout!

Anyway, making a holiday visit to the ER was soooo freaking inevitable that one time, on a Thanksgiving of course, one of the ER nurses looked up and remarked "Oh, it's the Kiffer's. What holiday is it?" - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016

jpg Editorial Cartoon: Scalia's Chair

Editorial Cartoon: Scalia's Chair
By Rick McKee ©2016, The Augusta Chronicle
Distributed to subscribers for publication by Cagle Cartoons, Inc.


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letter Gas Prices in Alaska By Rep. Dan Ortiz - A daily goal of mine, as your House District 36 representative, is to create avenues for constituent communication. A belief in “government of the people, by the people, for the people,” from Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, motivates me to make constituent communication easy and inviting. - More...
Monday PM - February 16, 2016

letter IF THE TOILET IS OVERFLOWING AND YOU REPAIR THE SINK, THE TOILET IS STILL OVERFLOWING By David G Hanger - The very first thing everyone needs to get a handle on in this Alaska financial crisis is that the price of a barrel of oil is not the primary cause of this disaster. Nor have production levels on the North Slope in the past two years declined significantly. 200 million barrels went through that pipeline in 2013, and somewhere between 380 million and 390 million barrels of oil have gone through that pipeline in 2014 and 2015. For the last six months of 2015 the oil companies produced 20,000 more barrels per day. In 2015 oil industry employment in the state of Alaska actually increased marginally throughout the year. And the state of Alaska did not collect a dime in oil taxes from those rats, their buddies, in 2014 and 2015. - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016

letter Proposed legislature pay cuts By Charlie Freeman - The proposal to cut legislative pay, while sounding noble, is a really bad idea and here's why. Most people have to work for a living and cannot take 120 days off to go to Juneau for free. We already pretty much limit the legislative gene pool to lawyers and the retired, and that does not make for a representative government. What it does do is get you a government with a limited idea of what it takes to live here. - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2015

letter TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE! By Robert B. Holston Jr. - H & R Block is giving away $32,000,000 in one month to lucky folks who file taxes through them. I’ve seen the ads and done the math. I called the local office and asked, “So where does the $32,000,000 come from?” She had no idea. I told her, “From your customers.” - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2015

letter Wearable Arts By Dan Ortiz - Another year has passed and another successful Wearable Arts weekend has come. This is the 30th year of the famous Wearable Art Show, fondly referred to as simply ‘wearable’ by its seasoned participants. Thank you to the coordinators, artists, models and backstage volunteers who dedicated their time (and late nights!) to this Ketchikan tradition. I would like to extend a special thank you to Diane Palmer, who has participated in every one of Ketchikan’s Wearable Art Shows for the past 30 years. The hard work and cooperation a large event like this requires is an annual show of special dedication to the life of our community. - More...
Monday PM - February 15, 2016

letter State budget & assumptions By Al Johnson - I sent in a letter to both Senator Stedman and Representative Ortiz specifically asking that they do not use the assumptions that oil prices will increase to cover budget numbers passed prior to oil price decreases. - More..
Thursday AM - February 11, 2016

letter Schoenbar girls emerge as a force on the mat By Matt Hamilton - Practice starts 2:45 pm every day with rolling out the mats and Jr high students buzzing with what they had been up to that day and it ends with me bellowing jogging to signal the start of practice.

This is my 18th year involved with the sport of wrestling and the landscape has not really changed much. Weigh in, warm up, drill the basics, fine tune positions, demonstrate new skills then apply them to drilling, explain grappling ideologies and philosophy and end with a half hour of relentless positional full contact wrestling then do it again tomorrow. Always the same but something has changed this year. - More...
Sunday AM - February 07, 2016

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