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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
June 03, 2009

Front Page Photo by CINDY BALZER

Fishing Eagle
Front Page Photo by CINDY BALZER


Ketchikan: Federal Employees Recognized for Service - Three federal employees were recognized for their diligence and service during 2008 last Thursday at the Crows Nest on the Ketchikan U.S. Coast Guard Base.

The annual event is held to bring attention to the above and beyond the call of duty efforts of federal employees.

The winner of the Federal Employee of the Year Community Service Award was given to 3^rd Class Petty Officer Christine E. Carolus who has served in the U.S. Coast Guard for over 3 years.

Carolus makes her impact on the community by her numerous volunteer efforts. She has served as the Coast Guard Enlisted Associations president and along with others in the organization assisted in a radio fund raiser for St. Jude's Children's Hospital. She assisted with the Ketchikan Coast Guard ISC monthly soup kitchen service and organized a Thanksgiving Day meal for the Salvation Army.

Carolus partnered with local schools helping with field day events and food, an annual BBQ and the Ward Lake Family Day.

Other organizations have benefitted from Carolus' volunteerism including the Ketchikan 4^th of July Celebration, the Blueberry Festival and Big Brothers and Big Sisters.

Because the judges for the awards couldn't decide between two finalists, 1^st Class Petty Officer Lacretia C. Nolan was also given a Federal Employee of the Year Award for Community Service.

Nolan also offered volunteer efforts to local Ketchikan Schools helping with the "Safe Schools/Healthy Students" program. She is ISC Ketchikan's Partnership in Education Coordinator and Vice President of the Ketchikan Charter School Academic Policy Committee. As the recently elected successor President of ISC Ketchikan, Nolan partners with community organizations in events that benefit both the community and the Coast Guard.

She has also worked getting volunteers for the Ketchikan High School basketball tournament.

Other volunteer efforts have benefitted the Girl Scouts, Charter School, Ketchikan Youth Soccer League, Big Brothers and Big Sisters and the Salvation Army Soup Kitchen.

Boatswain's Mate First Class Angela Dell received the Federal Employee of the Year Professional Excellence Award.

Coast Guard Lieutenant Commander Wesley Hout said Dell's devotion to duty and technical expertise has been manifestly evident in her position as ISC Port Service Petty Officer and Aids to Navigation Petty Officer. She also served as Command Drug and Alcohol Representative. - More...
Wednesday - June 03, 2009

Alaska: Alaska Aviation Bill Introduced - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), today introduced legislation designed to protect and improve important aviation programs in Alaska, including an exemption that would allow the Iditarod Air Force to accept cost deferments for flying in support of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

Murkowski's bill, the Alaska Omnibus Aviation Improvement Act (S.1170), was introduced in advance of Senate consideration of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization bill during the 111th Congress. The U.S. House of Representatives passed its version of an FAA reauthorization bill (H.R. 915) last month.

"I hope the Senate will consider these Alaska priorities as we debate the upcoming FAA reauthorization bill," Murkowski said.

Alaska Flight Service Stations

Flight Service Stations, such as the Ketchikan Flight Service Station, provide pilots with information necessary to safely plan and complete flights. Services include preflight briefings and in-flight updates regarding weather conditions, flight restrictions, volcanic activity and notices to airmen regarding airport facilities and runway conditions. Flight Service also monitors flight plans filed by pilots and coordinates the first response for lost aircraft.

In the aviation-dependant state of Alaska, Flight Service has a special importance. The FAA recognized this fact in 2005 when it outsourced the Flight Service functions in the lower 48 but kept Alaska Flight Service Stations intact. The contracted stations in the lower 48 states have caused inconvenience for pilots, which could pose serious problems in Alaska. H.R. 915, the House-passed FAA reauthorization, includes the establishment of a monitoring system for contracted Flight Service Stations (Sec. 217).

"Flight Service Stations provide vital services to pilots in Alaska and across the country. As the Congress moves to improve the outsourced Flight Service Stations in the lower 48, we must also ensure that the FAA maintains its commitment to Alaskan aviators," Murkowski said. - More...
Wednesday - June 03, 2009

Alaska: Ethics Complaint on Governor's Apparel Dismissed - Alaska Governor Sarah Palin today welcomed news that another ethics complaint has been dismissed. This is the 14th ethics complaint filed against the governor or her staff that has been resolved with no finding of a violation of the Executive Branch Ethics Act. Those complaints contain 22 separate allegations, all of which have been found to be without merit.

The complaint, filed by Linda Kellen Biegel, a blogger designated by the 2008 Democratic National Convention to represent Alaska bloggers, alleged that the governor violated the ethics act when she acted as the official starter of the Iron Dog snow machine race in February while wearing a jacket with the name Team Arctic, a logo of the Arctic Cat Company. The complaint accused the governor of using her position and state resources to serve her personal financial interests. The complaint also alleged that the governor used state resources to promote a personal interest. - More...
Wednesday - June 03, 2009


Columns - Commentary

DEROY MURDOCK: America is broke - "We're out of money," President Obama admitted. "We're operating in deep deficits," he said in a recent C-Span interview.

While Obama is refreshingly realistic, he resembles a man who strolls into a bar, sees that his wallet is empty, and then slaps a round of drinks for everyone onto his wheezing credit card.

Rather than use America's rapidly deteriorating public finances to restore fiscal discipline after G.W Bush's deplorable spend-o-rama, Obama is digging America into a deeper hole -- not with a shovel, but with a backhoe. If he continues, the ensuing canyon walls will collapse and crush us.

Look how spectacularly Washington squanders your money:

-- General Motors recently requested $2.6 billion in fresh bailout money. On May 22, Washington gave GM $4 billion, 154 percent of what it wanted. This gift arrived just days before GM was expected to declare bankruptcy. The Treasury might as well have deposited $4 billion in the nearest landfill.

-- The so-called Bridge to Software is an $11 million taxpayer-funded project in Redmond, Washington. It will connect the east and west campuses of Microsoft -- a company with $20 billion cash. Across the entire budget, such lunacy soon spells fiscal doom. - More...
Wednesday - June 03, 2009

DALE MCFEATTERS: The hidden radiation around us - Admittedly, it sounds like bad science fiction, but long-term exposure to such products as diverse as reclining chairs, common kitchen utensils and tableware, elevator buttons and construction steel could be a long-term health hazard.

That's because radioactively tainted metal is increasingly turning up in common consumer goods and industrial products, thanks to widespread use of radioactive isotopes, increased recycling in the United States that sometimes inadvertently processes them and imports of metal products from countries like China that have a relaxed attitude toward consumer safety. And there are reports that exporters in China, India, the former Soviet bloc and some African nations are taking advantage of the fact that the United States has no regulations specifying unacceptable levels of radiation in imports.

The health hazards -- for the time being -- are perhaps not great, but as one official said, "There is no threshold of exposure below which low levels of ionizing radiation can be demonstrated to be harmless or beneficial."

But as Scripps Howard News Service's Isaac Wolf found out, following extensive interviews, Freedom of Information requests and access to databases, that although the possibility of risk to the public is widely acknowledged, in our highly regulated society there is no federal agency or body of regulation specifically charged with protecting Americans from radioactively tainted products. - More...
Wednesday - June 03, 2009


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Basic Rules

letterIn the wake of the Queen By Mark Gatti - Anyone who lives here in Ketchikan knows that our airport ferry operates in one of, if not the narrowest parts of the Tongass Narrows. Most prudent mariners would agree, given the traffic volume and the current in this area, they would not allow themselves to get into this situation. A 19' Glasply is more manoeuvreable than the Airport Ferry or a large paddle boat. - More...
Sunday - May 31, 2009

letterKCCB: never a disappointment By Judith Green - Attending any performance under the direction of Roy McPherson is indeed always a pleasure. A Celebration of 50 Years: Alaska Statehood was no different. From Alaska's Flag to America, the Beautiful - an evening of superb music on stage at Kayhi. - More...
Friday AM - May 29, 2009

letterMusic on the Red Carpet By Judith Green - BRAVO! Ms Elliot and choral groups! What a fun night! I SO enjoyed your many and varied talents. Those high school 'kids' really did a great job! And Ms Elliot so enjoyed being 'partner' with them. - More...
Friday AM - May 29, 2009

letterAMERICA, DEFINE REASON* by Ken Bylund - *reason \ n. computation; to calculate, think: a statement offered in explanation; rational ground, a motive or justification; the thing that makes some fact intelligible... towards comprehending, and sanity. Been reading words from the mind of a true genius, a most brilliant essay on the problems of [our] society, and am taken by the succinct use of words and analogy by this student of human instinct, our flaws, strengths and trends. F. A. Hayek [1899 - 1992], co-winner of the Nobel Prize in economics [1974], and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom [1991]. - More...
Friday AM - May 29, 2009

letterSupporting troops By Inge Kummant - Ketchikan readers may be interested in learning that Operation AC still needs support, especially from people interested in "adopting" soldiers deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. - More...
Friday AM - May 29, 2009

letterMore Old Growth trees - meaningless By Don Borders - I am appalled at the pointless and aimless projections that quote "mature trees". Those personal references are not put into proper perspective to just what a mature tree is. To say something is or has reached a particular state of age or growth needs to be referenced to which they are referring as. To say, "mature old growth trees" needs a referenced point, which an end user will use it. One would be: adequately large enough to mill lumber. Another one, a recreational user, who wants to see the overhead canopy of the green tops from older trees, which is screening out the Sun Light so the brush has died off and the young trees have no opportunity to grow due to the lack of light. - More...
Friday AM - May 29, 2009

letterIn the wake of the Queen... By Chris Barry - Sorry I can't show any empathy regarding your concerns, but such is life when you use a waterway as busy as our section of the narrows. - More...
Friday AM - May 29, 2009

letterCars Coming from China By Donald A. Moskowitz - General Motors (GM) received $20 billion in U.S. government loans and might need another $50 billion to survive. - More...
Friday AM - May 29, 2009

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Ketchikan, Alaska

M.C. Kauffman, Webmaster/Editor,
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