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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
October 20, 2006

Front Page Photo by Chris Wilhelm

Casey Moran Harbor
Photo By Chris Wilhelm


Ketchikan: Outgoing governor to award bridge contract By MATT VOLZ - The Bridge to Nowhere may be headed somewhere, with Alaska's outgoing governor planning to award a contract in his final days of office worth up to $30 million. - Read this Anchorage Daily News story...

Alaska: Young sidesteps spotlight; VERY CONTROLLED: Congressman doesn't do campaign events. By LISA DEMER Anchorage Daily News - With less than three weeks until the Nov. 7 election, the only public appearance by Don Young, Alaska's sole congressman, will be a television program with five other candidates that may not be aired statewide. - Read this Anchorage Daily News story...

Top Stories
U.S. News
U.S. Politics


The week in review By THOMAS HARGROVE - Pundits see political tsunami aimed at GOP

Political experts this week said the anti-incumbent, anti-war, anti-Bush fervor is so strong that a Democratic takeover of the House is "very likely" and a flip of leadership in the Senate a real possibility next month. "Republicans don't seem to be running for office these days. They look more like they're limping," said Virginia political-science professor Larry Sabato. Political handicapper Charlie Cook said conservatives face a category 5 hurricane that could easily bring a 30-seat gain in the House, twice what Democrats need to take control. "This is the worst political situation for the GOP since the Watergate disaster in 1974," Cook said.

Iraqi violence escalates, U.S. leaders consider changes

Ten U.S. troops died in firefights with Iraqi insurgents Tuesday, the highest one-day toll in several months. The escalating violence in and around Baghdad, up 43 percent since summer, brought glum admissions from military leaders. "Insurgent elements, the extremists, are pushing back hard," Maj. Gen. William Caldwell said. President Bush told the Associated Press on Friday he would meet with the generals to determine if policy changes are merited. "We are constantly adjusting tactics so we can achieve our objectives and right now, it's tough," Bush said. U.S. forces suffered at least 74 fatalities in October.

North Korea may blink over nuclear impasse

North Korea signaled it might back down from its nuclear showdown with the world Friday, five days after U.S. officials confirmed the isolated nation had conducted a small underground nuclear test last week. North Korean leader Kim Jong Il reportedly apologized to Chinese representatives for the Oct. 9 nuclear detonation and vowed not to test any more nuclear devices. "If the U.S. makes a concession to some degree, we will also make a concession to some degree, whether it be bilateral talks or six-party talks," Kim was quoted in the South Korean press as telling a Chinese envoy.

Wisconsin man arrested for football-stadium hoax

Wisconsin grocery-store clerk Jake Brahm, 20, was arrested Friday on charges of making hoax threats on the Internet that seven U.S. football stadiums would be struck by terrorists using radiological "dirty bombs." The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security issued a joint statement that football fans "should be reassured of their security as they continue to attend sporting events this weekend." The threat, posted Oct. 12 on "The Friend Society" Web site, said trucks would deliver radiological bombs Sunday to stadiums in Atlanta, Miami, Cleveland, Houston, New York, Seattle and Oakland, Calif.

NBC to cut jobs and pricey prime-time shows

NBC Universal announced Thursday it will streamline news operations, cut 700 jobs and scale back its expensive prime-time programming. The changes, meant to cut $750 million in costs, are more evidence that changing media habits of the American public are threatening mainstream operations like the venerable broadcasting company.

The network's struggling 24-hour cable news channel, MSNBC, will relocate operations to NBC headquarters at Rockefeller Center in Manhattan and to another NBC facility in Englewood Cliffs, N.J. NBC Universal's operating profits declined 10 percent during each of the last three quarters.

Retired priest admits misbehavior with Foley

A retired Roman Catholic priest said he fondled former Rep. Mark Foley as a 13-year-old boy and took naked saunas with him. Officials at the Florida diocese where Foley grew up is investigating Foley's charge that he was sexually abused by the Rev. Anthony Mercieca, 69, who retired to the Maltese island of Gozo. "It was just fondling," Mercieca said in a television interview. Meanwhile, the House ethics committee continued its investigation this week into Republican leaders' handling of inappropriate communications by Foley with former House male pages. - More...
Friday - October 20, 2006

A 'killer' of a whale

A 'killer' of a whale
Front Page Photo By Carl Thompson

Ketchikan: A 'killer' of a whale - Ketchikan resident Robert McRoberts said that he and Dale Bakkela were getting ready to cut a 350 year old cedar log into boards when McRoberts stopped the work because he could see a whale within the old log. - More...
Friday - October 20, 2006

Fish Factor: First of its kind fish refuge proposed By Laine Welch - A first of its kind fish refuge is being proposed to state policy makers as a way to protect fish habitat in headwaters of Bristol Bay. It includes lower and upper Talarik Creek and the Koktuli River, waters that are adjacent to the site of the open pit gold and copper mine being proposed by Northern Dynasty of Canada.

"The law has been on the books for a long time that the state Board of Fisheries (BOF) can establish sanctuaries, reserves or refuges," said George Matz of Homer, sponsor of Proposal 121. "I chose a refuge because it allows for consumptive use. Basically, we need some kind of protection for fish habitat to allow for continuing uses of commercial, sport and subsistence fishing," he added.

Matz, a retired state policy analyst and former game board member, said the concept is new to Alaska. "In the past, refuges have generally been set aside for both fish and game and included both water and land. Proposal 121 is specific to state waters and thereby avoids land use issues," he explained, adding that his request predates all others for water rights. - More...
Friday - October 20, 2006


Washington Calling: Telemarketers rebuked ... lobbyists want money back By LISA HOFFMAN - Take a moment and give thanks to the Federal Trade Commission for sparing us from yet another telemarketing onslaught.

Two years ago a California company came up with a way to get around the telemarketing ban that millions of consumers signed up for when a "do-not-call" registry was created in 2003.

The firm contended prerecorded calls should be exempt from that don't-bother-us-anymore rule. Other marketers joined in, saying taped calls aren't as annoying as those with a human doing the speaking.

But the FTC disconnected that argument this month, saying no robo-calls would be allowed unless the customer consented in writing to receive them.


Lobbyists are lining up to get their contributions back from the campaign chest of former Rep. Mark Foley, the Florida GOP lawmaker who fled Congress amidst a sex scandal involving congressional pages.

When he resigned in September, Foley had accumulated nearly $2 million in a political action committee that funneled big bucks to Republican candidates. Now, it's the contributors with their hands out.

Foley's latest campaign report shows he already has returned about $25,000, including $7,000 to the National Restaurant Association's PAC and $4,000 to pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly. The Hill newspaper reported insurance company AFLAC has requested its $10,000 back.

But one PAC appears not to have gotten the message. Instead of asking for a refund, the National Right to Life Political Action Committee sent Foley an $820 donation on Wednesday.


Nov. 7 will be the first national election night in decades without the formidable troika of network news lions anchoring the returns. Since 2004, CBS's Dan Rather and NBC's Tom Brokaw have retired, and ABC's Peter Jennings died.


The doctor supply is beginning to catch up with demand. The Association of American Medical Colleges reports that first-year enrollment in the nation's medical schools edged up by about 2.2 percent this year, the second straight year of an increase in the ranks of freshman medicos.

This trend is a reverse from one that began in the late 1990s, when talented college students were more likely to shun the rigors and expense of medical careers, which were becoming less rewarding thanks to the advent of managed care. Still, the association says enrollment needs to jump by 30 percent in the next decade to ensure there will enough docs to care for the nation's aging population. - More...
Friday - October 20, 2006


Basic Rules

letter Zero Tolerence and kids By Kathi Collum - Wednesday PM
letter Local gas prices By Karen Ramsey - Wednesday PM
letter Shame on Would-Be Thief By Jennifer Brewer - Wednesday PM
letter Drinking & drug use by children By Amy Schmitt - Wednesday PM
letter Tongass construction By Dan Hart - Wednesday PM
letter Ketchikan Regional Youth Facility (The DH you may not know we have) By Dave Timmerman - Wednesday PM
letter Lions By Ed Pero - Wednesday PM
letter Adults think they know all the answers... But they don't. By Brigitte Mumma - Wednesday PM
letter Irritating Cell Phones By Emanuel Molho - Wednesday PM
letter Ketchikan's rehabilitation center By Bonnie Jean Abbott - Wednesday PM
letterNow a Zero Tolerance Policy By Vicki Harsha - Tuesday AM
letter Do what's right for people! By Mary Fay Hemli - Tuesday AM
letter Zero Tolerance in Ketchikan By Vicki Harsha - Monday AM
letter Long Island Herbicide spraying By Paula Peterson - Monday AM
letter Open Letter to DOT: Make Safety a Priority By Kay Sims and Terry Wanzer - Monday AM
letter And More... About White Cliff By Jackie Williams - Monday AM
letter Ketchikan Detention Home By Aan Kadax Tseen - Monday AM
letter So you want to use drugs? By Catlin Rettke - Monday AM
letterPolice, kids, underage drinking By Karen Hollywood - Thursday PM
letter RE: Police and Law Enforcement in Ketchikan By Stacey Stone - Thursday PM
letter Where's Tony ... part two? By Jeff Kemp - Thursday PM
letter That time of Year. . . By Virginia E. Atkinson
letter WARS and CONFLICTS - A Republican Legacy? By James Hanson - Thursday PM
letter Taxed Out By Robert McRoberts - Thursday PM
letter More Viewpoints/ Letters
letter Publish A Letter

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SitNews Archives
October 2006
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Arts & Entertainment

Ketchikan: Arts This Week - This week in Ketchikan the Torch Nights Performing Arts Series presents Cheryl Wheeler in concert. Singer/songwriter Cheryl Wheeler graces the Kayhi stage in the first of many fine performances of the 2006-2007 Torch Nights season. A brilliant and hilarious storyteller, Wheeler invites the audience of all ages to find their own lives reflected in the sweet spaces of her songs. She will be performing Sunday, October 22, 2006 at 7:30pm in the Kayhi Auditorium. Call 225-2211 for more information and/or to purchase a season ticket. Tickets will be available in October at TBC, Soho Coho, Madison Hardware, McPherson music and the Arts Council. Visit Cheryl's website at

Arts This Week...

Singer/songwriter Cheryl Wheeler graces the Kayhi stage in the first of many fine performances of the 2006-2007 Torch Nights season.
Sunday, October 22, 2006 at 7:30pm
Kayhi Auditorium

The Monthly Grind brings live local talent to the stage again on Saturday, October 21, 2006 at 7pm at the Saxman Tribal House. Coffee, dessert and fabulous entertainment all for just $5 for adults, and $1 for kids, buy a ticket, bring a homemade dessert and get a refund.

Friday Night Insight Programs at the Southeast Alaska Discovery Center every Friday from 5-7pm. October 20: "American's Rain Forest: A distance Learning Adventure" Brooke Hunt and her former 6th grade students will put on an encore presentation from 2005.

Friends Craft Night: Help make quilted stars to benefit the new library building fund from 6:00-7:30pm, Tuesday, October 24. All supplies are provided and no experience is necessary. Call 225-3331 for more information.

Intergenerational Activities with the Pioneers Home and Boys and Girls Club. These monthly intergenerational activities take place on the 3rd Saturday of each month from 1-3pm at the Pioneers Home. This month's theme is Harvest Month, and seniors and youth are invited to decorate bird houses and play bingo with Pioneer Home seniors and Boys and Girls Club youth on Saturday, October 21. All are welcome! Please call Gretchen at 617-4685 with questions.

Workshops & Classes:

Jewelry making workshop with Tina Mander! Local jewelry maker Tina Mander will hold a silver jewelry making workshop on Saturday, November 11 from 1:30pm - 3pm at Alaska Rose in the Plaza. She would love to share her passion for silver crafting with artists of all ages and abilities. To register call 247-4759, $25 fee includes all materials and supplies.

Bigfoot Pottery Studio is Moving to the old Physical Graffiti building, downstairs. Classes and the studios will be available again in November. Call Erik at 617-2378 for more information. Check here for class availability then, too.

Classes at the Totem Heritage Center: Register for fall classes at the Heritage Center online, by phone, mail or in person, Monday - Friday, 8am - 5pm 225-5900.Classes offered -- Fall: Cedar Bark Weaving Intermediate & Advanced with Diane Douglas-Willard, Carver's Toolmaking & NWC Project Design with Steve Brown, Beginning Cedar Bark Weaving with Holly Churchill, Drawing for Carvers with Donald Varnell. Spring: Mixed Level Ravens tail weaving with Evelyn Vanderhoop, Intro to NWC Carving with Fred Trout, Coiled Basketry with Carol Douglas, Mold Making for Carvers with Steven Jackson, Cedar Bark Weaving Intermediate & Advanced with Diane Douglas-Willard, Doll Making: NWC Form with Mary Anne Frank.....

Ongoing attractions:

Something Interesting to Look At features the works of Joe Piston at the Mainstay Gallery at 716 Totem Way. Joe works with brightly colored acrylics on large canvasses that are sure to catch the eye of gallery patrons and his work will be on display through Friday, October 27, 2006. The Mainstay Gallery is sponsored by the Ketchikan Area Arts and Humanities Council, 225-2211.

Metlakatla: Vintage Photographs is on display now through November 19, 2006 at the Tongass Historical Museum, 629 Dock Street. This exhibit features more than 100 images detailing the history and peoples of Metlakatla from 1887 to the 1920s. The museum is open Wednesday - Friday from 1-5, on Saturdays from 10 - 5, and Sundays from 1 - 4. Call the Museum for more info at 225-5600. - More...
Wednesday - October 18, 2006

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