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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
October 17, 2012

Front Page Photograph by JIM LEWIS

Orcas of the Rainforest
This photograph was taken in the Mountain Point area. The photographer said there was one more larger whale in this group, not pictured.
Front Page Photograph by JIM LEWIS ©2012
(Please respect the rights of photographers, never republish or copy
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Southeast Alaska: Tlingit Artist Tells Cautionary Tale About Use of Feathers in Art - Award-winning Tlingit carver Archie Cavanaugh is still reeling from federal charges that threatened to imprison him for 10 years and impose a $100,000 fine - all because he put feathers on his work.

Before: Shakee.át (headdress) adorned with flicker feathers
Photograph courtesy SHI

Cavanaugh says he did not know he was prohibited by two federal laws from using flicker feathers and raven feathers on pieces for sale, and he wants other Native artists to know they could be in legal peril as well.

“It was devastating, it was depressive. It was hurtful, painful, for a carver - a Tlingit - to go through what I did, not knowing it was a law,” Cavanaugh said.

“So many of our people use these materials and they’re not aware that selling them is prohibited. The use of flicker feathers is an ancient practice,” said Sealaska Heritage Institute President Rosita Worl. “And as far as we’re aware, flicker feathers come from birds that are not endangered.”

Cavanaugh’s ordeal began when an agent with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently contacted him, saying the artist could face prison time and substantial fines because he was attempting to sell online a shakee.át (headdress) adorned with flicker feathers and a hat that had raven feathers on it. He says a farmer in the Lower 48 gave the flicker feathers to him and an animal control officer gave the raven feathers to him.

Cavanaugh faced charges under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act for attempted sale of the flicker feathers and under the Lacey Act for attempted sale of the raven feathers. He hired a lawyer and settled the case in October, agreeing to pay a $2,000 fine with no prison time. He also was forced to strip the feathers from his pieces and hand them over to the agency.

Cavanaugh says he complied to avoid prison time and a financially devastating fine, but he doesn’t understand why he isn’t allowed to sell especially items adorned with flicker feathers, which are found on ancient pieces. A revered Tlingit carver from Wrangell named Kaajisduá (Man For You To Hear) sold such pieces, he said. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 17, 2012

Ketchikan: KIC awarded $1.2 million grant to improve Alaska Native Graduation Rate in Ketchikan - The United States Department of Education Alaska Native Education Program (ANEP) has awarded the Ketchikan Indian Community Education Department a $1.2 million, three-year grant to improve the Native student graduation rate in Ketchikan.  

KIC awarded $1.2 million grant to improve Alaska Native Graduation Rate in Ketchikan

John Brown, Ketchikan Indian Community Tribal Education Director
Photo courtesy KIC

The grant project, called Tribal Scholars, will be used in partnership with the Ketchikan Gateway Borough School District to enable eligible students to learn in culturally appropriate contexts while enrolled at KGBSD.  This partnership is a groundbreaking collaboration between the Ketchikan Indian Community Tribe and the Ketchikan school district.  

As reported by the Ketchikan Gateway Borough School District, the Native graduation rate in Ketchikan is approximately 56%.  The Native Scholars program’s goal is to improve the graduation rate by 15% over three years through intensive remedial instruction in core areas, culturally appropriate practices, and behavioral health support.   Each year, the Tribal Scholars program will support up to 24 learners in grades 9th through 11th grade.

KIC SSEATEC Director, John Brown, stated, “This program is the next step in a process begun three years ago with our first Alaska Native Education Program grant.  First, we learned of the problems and challenges our students were experiencing; now we are working with the school district to do something about it.” - More...
Wednesday - October 17, 2012

Alaska: Maker of "XTRATUF" Responds: Begich and Honeywell agree, “XTRATUF” corporate-tax problem requires immediate action - After shining the spotlight on the declining quality of XTRATUF boots after its manufacturer, Honeywell, moved production to China, Sen. Mark Begich may have found some common ground with the beleaguered boot-maker: both believe the U.S. corporate tax rate is too high.

Begich joined with Senate colleagues Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Dan Coats (R-Ind.) in the “Bipartisan Tax Fairness and Simplification Act of 2011” to cut the six existing corporate tax brackets to a flat corporate tax rate of 24 percent. The bill also includes provisions to allow most small businesses to expense all equipment and inventory costs and provides incentives for corporations that have moved overseas, like Honeywell, to reinvest in the United States.

“With many small businesses paying up to 35 percent in corporate taxes, my bipartisan proposal will free up capital that can be used to create jobs here in the U.S.,” Begich said. “There’s no question tax reform is needed as soon as possible, and I’ll work with anyone in the Senate, regardless of party, to get us there.” - More...
Wednesday - October 17, 2012

Alaska: Patient Notification Advised in Multistate Fungal Meningitis Outbreak ; Some Alaska Facilities Received Products - The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services has received information from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration this week that the sterility of all injectable drugs produced by the New England Compounding Center’s (NECC), a compounding pharmacy in Framingham, Massachusetts, are now of significant concern in the multistate fungal meningitis outbreak investigation.

The FDA is advising health care facilities nationwide to contact patients who received any injectable drugs produced by NECC after May 21, 2012, and instruct them to contact a health care provider immediately if they experience any symptoms of fungal infection.

Symptoms of fungal infection may include fever; swelling, increasing pain, redness, warmth at injection site; visual changes, pain, redness or discharge from the eye; chest pain, or drainage from a surgical site; or headache, stiff neck, nausea and vomiting, sensitivity to light, and altered mental status. No action is necessary for persons who do not have symptoms. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 17, 2012

Alaska: U.S. Coast Guard, Canada partner to curb illegal fishing in the Pacific Ocean - The U.S. Coast Guard and the Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans recently conducted joint patrols of the high seas under Operation Drift Net which took place from Sep. 19 to Oct. 6.

Coast Guard cutters and Canadian aircraft patrolled the international waters off Japan in an effort to locate vessels engaged in large-scale high seas drift net fishing. This practices employs the use of miles upon miles of net constructed of mono-filament line that indiscriminately catch all sea life in their path including whales, dolphins, sea turtles and seabirds. The fishermen are known to target high value species such as sharks, tuna and salmon.

Due to the fact this type of fishing is so destructive it has been condemned by many nations worldwide. In response to these concerns the UN General Assembly in 1992 passed Resolution 46/125 creating an international moratorium on high seas drift net fishing.

The governments of the U.S., Canada, Russia and Japan signed the Convention for the Conservation of Anadromous Stocks in the North Pacific Ocean around the same time. The Republic of Korea joined the commission that implements this convention in 2003. The commission is called the North Pacific Anadromous Fisheries Commission. The convention prohibits directed fishing for anadromous fish (salmon) and the retention on board fishing vessels of salmon taken incidentally while directed fishing for other marine species. These prohibitions apply to all fishing methods, but large-scale drift net fishing is the most historical, prevalent and destructive method of fishing on the high seas in contravention of the NPAFC convention. The Coast Guard and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans patrols are conducted under the authority of the convention. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 17, 2012


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Questions, please contact the editor at or call 617-9696
Sitnews reserves the right to edit.

letter VP Debate By Rob Holston - CNN Wolf Blitzer, commenting on the VP debate, said one issue was “women’s right to abortion.” Is there anyone else out there who actually recognizes the liberal left wing position that Blitzer demonstrates with this supposedly “neutral” (CNN) comment? - More...
Monday PM - October 15, 2012

letter Support Rep. Peggy Wilson By Linda Koons Auger - I will be voting for Representative Peggy Wilson for House District 33 on Election Day, Tuesday, November 6th.  For those of you that seem to be worried about a candidate being “LOCAL”, I would say that “SENIORITY” is what you should be concerned about! Losing one House seat due to re-districting places our community and Southeast Alaska in a potentially precarious position in the Legislature. In a 40-member House of Representatives, the SENIORITY Representative Wilson brings to the table is invaluable.   - More...
Monday PM - October 15, 2012

letter Theft By Jeff Lundberg - I must proclaim my disgust to the person who stole the donation jar from the Craig library on October 11 during business hours. - More...
Monday PM - October 15, 2012

letter Timely President's speech By A. M. Johnson - As a staunch conservative constitutional voting citizen who has NEVER voted Democrat for the obvious philosophical reasons allows me to suggest that a speech by this Democrat given in today's strain of Democrats would have current Democrats screeching much as finger nails on a black board to attempt shutting out the words. Doubt me? Then listen to that speech and you draw your conclusions of what the Democratic Party was and where it is today. - More...
Monday PM - October 15, 2012

letter The Bait-and-Switch on Alaskan Energy By U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski - An alliance of environmental activists and Democratic politicians has spent decades blocking the efforts of Alaskans to access the rich energy resources of our state.

When Alaskans wanted to open the 1002 area of ANWR to exploration and production, opponents of progress stymied our efforts with fear-mongering and obstructionism. In so doing, they frequently pointed to the National Petroleum Reserve-Alaska in the northwest corner of the state as a preferable location for drilling. This, they argued, would protect the coastal plain of ANWR. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 10, 2012

letter New Trade Agreement Could Hurt U.S. Companies By Donald A. Moskowitz - The Obama administration is currently negotiating another free trade agreement, which will increase the likelihood of awarding federal contracts to foreign companies located on the Pacific Rim.  Countries in Southeast Asia will benefit by the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), add jobs, while the U.S. could lose more manufacturing jobs. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 10, 2012

letter Open Letter: Alaska Airlines & TSA By Donna Lewis - I flew to Seattle urgently due to a family emergency last Wednesday.  The cost of my ticket $508.40.  Being in the frame of mind that I was, I had not thought to look in my "wallet" on Alaska Air to discover that there was a 30% discount, and unfortunately since I had already booked the ticket I was not able to use that discount.  I booked my flight last night to return today and used the 30% discount with this return flight.  This cost was a total of $364.30.  All in total, my round trip ended up costing me a total of $872.70 and that was for flying in coach. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 10, 2012

letter Fair Tax Plan By Roy T Newsom - The unemployment report at 7.8% with 32 days left before the election gives a false impression.  Not counted were those who have stopped looking for a job, unemployment is closer to 14% with over 23,000,000 Americans unemployed or under-employed. - More...
Wednesday PM - October 10, 2012 

letter Fair Tax By Irving B. Welchons III - Both presidential candidates are making noise about how their tax plan will help you and their opponents will harm you.  Neither of them has talked about a plan that has been put before congress that would eliminate the income tax, payroll taxes and the IRS. - More..
Wednesday PM - October 10, 2012 

letter We strengthen ourselves by voting By Ishmael Hope - In November of 1912, thirteen men and one woman gathered together in Juneau to organize the Alaska Native Brotherhood, which is now celebrating its momentous Centennial in Sitka where its first camp was organized. The Founders included Peter Simpson, Ralph Young, Frank Price, Paul Liberty, Seward Kunz, James Watson, Frank Mercer, Chester Worthington, James C. Johnson, George Fields, Eli Katanook, William Hobson, Andrew Wanamaker and Marie Orsen. The Founding Fathers and Mother of the Alaska Native Brotherhood likely couldn't have imagined in their wildest dreams the great achievements of the Brotherhood and the Sisterhood. They gathered together to protect their people, and they proved to be enormously successful. - More...
Friday PM - October 05, 2012

letter Matt Olsen for State Rep. By Karen Eakes - As a teacher in the School District, I have known Matt Olsen since he was an elementary school student at Valley Park School. As a parent, I have known Matt as a high school friend of one of our daughters and as a fine musician in the Concert Band.  Then, years later I got to know him much better as an adult with a young family and a responsible job at the University. - More...
Friday PM - October 05, 2012

letter World Teachers' Day: October 5th By Arne Duncan - World Teachers’ Day gives us an opportunity to celebrate the contributions of teachers across the globe. Education is recognized worldwide as the most important driver of economic growth and social change, and teachers are the ones leading the way. - More...
Friday PM- October 05, 2012

letter City of Ketchikan Taxes By Douglas Thompson - Well the city taxes are coming due once more.  It is frustrating to give hard earned money to the city manager to waste.  It is more so when one such tax is illegal.  I refer to the city boat tax.  A tax that the borough has dropped for its residents even though their boats may be in city harbors.  Seems highly discriminatory although that is not why I refer to it as illegal.  The city wishes us as citizens to follow its enacted statutes but they in turn do not seem to feel obligated to follow the higher laws that govern them (state and federal).  - More...
Friday - September 28, 2012

letter TIME FOR ALASKA TO ALIGN WITH THE ASIAN MARKET By Bill Walker - Since the award of the AGIA contract, Alaska has funded Exxon/TransCanada in the amount of $188 million, yet Alaska  has not been told the results of the first July 2010 open season.  However, Asia’s strong demand for Valdez LNG was confirmed on September 14th when the Alaska Gasline Port Authority submitted nominations, on behalf of Asian buyers, in response to ExxonMobil/ TransCanada's AGIA second solicitation of interest.  As discussed below, the Port Authority has made those nominations public in the hope of encouraging open discourse about what steps must be taken immediately to monetize North Slope gas. - More...
Friday - September 28, 2012

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