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Juneau Empire
Marijuana Committee seeks more municipal control, again

The public-comment period for the state Marijuana Control Board’s third set of proposed regulations closes at the start of September. Before it does, the City and Borough of Juneau’s Marijuana Committee is hoping to make a few recommendations of its own — again seeking more control for municipalities.

The committee voted at its meeting Thursday to forward a list of comments to the full Assembly, which will decide Monday whether to pass the comments to the state board.

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Miller: Progress more complex than pass, fail

In true former-teacher form, Juneau School District Superintendent Mark Miller gave the Juneau Chamber of Commerce an assignment and a pop quiz.

“Take a second and think about your favorite teacher or coach,” Miller told those in attendance at Thursday’s weekly chamber meeting. “Think of two or three words or a phrase to describe them.”

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Q&A with Bill Bennett

On the third day of British Columbia Minister of Energy and Mines William Bennett’s four days in Southeast Alaska, Bennett, his Chief of Staff Cynthia Petrie, Ministry of Energy and Mines environmental geoscientist Tania Demchuk, and Executive Project Director for the Environmental Assessment Office Chris Hamilton made time to sit down with the Juneau Empire to answer a few questions.

The following is that interview, condensed, organized and edited for clarity.


Opening statement

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Fewer kids, less funding

Teachers have started taking roll for the new school year and already it looks like several students aren’t in their seats.

A preliminary enrollment figure by the Juneau School District shows yet another decline in enrollment by approximately 83 students, compared to last year’s 4,813 students reported by the Alaska Department of Education & Early Development.

The report also shows the school district missed the mark by more than two dozen students for their projected enrollment of 4,758.

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Photo: Back to banking

Mike Todd of Glacier Sign and Lighting of Anchorage works at installing signs on the new First National Bank of Alaska at the corner of 10th Street and Glacier Avenue on Thursday. The new regional office is scheduled to open next month.

Police & Fire for Friday, Aug. 28, 2015

This report contains information provided to the Empire from law enforcement agencies. This report includes arrest and citation information, not conviction information. Anyone listed in this report is presumed innocent.


• At 12:11 p.m. Wednesday, 43-year-old Oscar Snell was arrested for assault on Village Street, and he was taken to Lemon Creek Correctional Center on $1,500 bail. Alcohol was involved.

• At 6:20 p.m. Wednesday, investigation continues into a report of an assault in the 600 block of Willoughby Avenue.

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An Aug. 27 article about transboundary mine protestors interrupting a mayoral lunch quoted Martin and Chris Niemi. The Niemis participated in a rally on the Capitol steps. The lunch interruption was an offshoot of the rally; Martin and Chris Niemi did not participate in that offshoot.

Police seek fugitive seen Wednesday near trail

Police are asking the public for help locating a Juneau man who has evaded authorities since four warrants were issued for his arrest last year.

The request for help comes after an off-duty Juneau Police Department officer spotted 30-year-old Gregory Dewayne Crowley about 4 p.m. Wednesday near the trailhead for the Under Thunder trail in the Mendenhall Valley near Valley Boulevard.

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Coast Guard rescues heart attack victim near Juneau

The U.S. Coast Guard has rescued a man who was “experiencing symptoms of a heart attack” near Juneau on Wednesday.

According to an email from the Coast Guard’s public affairs office in Juneau, a small-boat crew from Station Juneau responded to the cruise ship Star Princess on Wednesday after the ship called for assistance 20 miles north of Juneau.

The station’s 45-foot response boat answered the call and took an ailing 61-year-old man to awaiting medics in Auke Bay.

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Chenega sailing canceled due to high seas

The Alaska Marine Highway ferry Chenega’s scheduled sailing Thursday was canceled due to high seas forecast for Chatham Strait and Lynn Canal, the Alaska Department of Transportation announced.

The Chenega was scheduled to sail from Juneau to Angoon, then Sitka, before heading back to Juneau. The DOT ferry Fairweather’s scheduled sailing Thursday from to Whittier from Cordova was canceled for the same reason.

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Photo: Basking in the sun

With a backdrop of Cropley Lake and Mount Ben Stewart, Linda Buckley, left, and Elaine Schroeder enjoy a day in the sun at the top of the Eaglecrest Ski Area on Tuesday.

CBJ Finance gives Housing First another advance

The Housing First Collaborative will receive an additional $250,000 advance from the City and Borough of Juneau in order to stay on track for a spring 2016 construction start date.

The members of the CBJ Assembly Finance Committee passed a motion to allocate the requested money at their Wednesday evening meeting, but they didn’t do so without objection.

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Why was repeat burglar placed at halfway house?

It didn’t take Albert Mazon long to bolt from the halfway house.

The 25-year-old was arrested by the Juneau Police Department Aug. 12 on suspicion of burglarizing a Glacier Highway home earlier in the month and he was lodged at Lemon Creek Correctional Center. The same day, he was arraigned in court and his bail was set at $10,000. Police believe Mazon also was responsible for a string of home burglaries and vehicle riflings in Juneau.

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After Bennett visit, groups are cautiously optimistic of progress

At a joint press conference Wednesday afternoon, environmental, fishing and Native leaders said they were optimistic about the outcome of Juneau meetings between Alaskans and a British Columbia delegation led by provincial Mines and Energy Minister Bill Bennett.

Bennett, in Juneau this week to discuss mining development along Alaska’s border with BC, is scheduled to leave Juneau today for Ketchikan before returning to Canada.

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BC, Alaska to draft MOU for mine processes

The province of British Columbia and the State of Alaska will draft a memorandum of understanding regarding mines proposed for and located in transboundary watersheds in British Columbia, BC Minister of Energy and Mines William “Bill” Bennett and Lt. Gov. Byron Mallot announced Wednesday at a press conference.

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Anchorage Daily
School District proposes reinstating 86 classroom positions

There's going to be 57 fewer classroom teachers in the Anchorage School District if the school board moves forward with budget adjustments announced Friday by Superintendent Ed Graff.

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Kicking off Native Youth Olympics

2014 Native Youth Olympics gallery: Hunter Wilson, left, and Wyatt Knowles of Valdez play hackeysack outdoors while awaiting the Grand Entry of Teams at the 2014 Native Youth Olympics on…

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Spring cleanup is dirty work

Workers kick up a cloud of dust, illuminated by the setting sun, while cleaning a parking lot south of 15th Avenue. The weather is moving into a cloudier pattern, but…

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Conference committee set to resolve education bill versions

The Senate finally passed the education bill Monday afternoon, little changed from the version on its agenda since last week.

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Photos: Seahawks Super Bowl MVP visits College Gate school

Seattle Seahawk linebacker and Super Bowl MVP Malcolm Smith does warmup exercises with sixth-graders at College Gate Elementary School on Friday.

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Wayne and Wanda

Unlucky in love? Wayne and Wanda offer their advice in matters of the heart.

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US soldier buried with Germans at end of WWII may finally be coming home

Mistaken for a German soldier and buried with the enemy at the end of World War II, a U.S. soldier may finally be coming home thanks in large part to…

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Alaska National Guard members face accusations of sexual misconduct

A dozen members of the Alaska National Guard face charges of sexual misconduct in what members of the guard call a severe problem in the ranks.

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Conway Seavey nabs another Junior Iditarod crown

Following in his family's paw prints, Conway Seavey of Sterling claimed his second Junior Iditarod championship Sunday, outdueling Ben Harper for a two-minute victory in the 132-mile sled dog race.

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Reynolds repeats as Fur Rondy sled dog race victor

Accepting his trophy with his lead dog, Guts, Arleigh Reynolds told the crowd that this would be his last Rondy race.

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Blues Central owner looks back at shift in Anchorage nightlife

As he prepares for Blues Central's last jam session, this weekend, Frank Dahl reflects on a career in restaurants and bars across Alaska, and how the nightlife scene has changed…

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Health insurer that refused federal HIV/AIDS payments sued by advocates

An advocacy group has filed a federal lawsuit seeking to force insurance companies in Louisiana to take payments from a federal program that helps HIV and AIDS patients.

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Lawmaker warns of legalized marijuana's social costs

House majority members on Thursday were asked about the potential tax revenues for the state should voters approve an initiative this summer legalizing the recreational use of marijuana.

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Feds: No more false starts on Alaska gas pipeline

Federal agencies are ready to work on an Alaska liquefied natural gas project but don't want another false start, state lawmakers were told Wednesday.

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Buccaneer seeks state rebates after Homer gas well comes up dry

Buccaneer Alaska LLC plans to plug and abandon a closely watched natural gas exploration well near Homer that came up dry despite a $9 million drilling program. Now Buccaneer wants…

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What Alaska's top state officials were paid in 2013

Top executives in state government made very good money in 2013, and University of Alaska officials were among those at the top of the list, according to a newly released…

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Market Fresh: Ninilchik smoked salmon takes top prizes in seafood contest

Tilgner's ruby red smoked sockeye, a new product from Ninilchik, took the grand prize, people's choice award and first place in the smoked seafood category at last week's Alaska Symphony…

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Minimum wage initiative makes August ballot

An initiative letting voters decide whether to raise the minimum wage in Alaska has met the minimum signatory requirements to be on the Aug. 19 ballot.

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Student debt may hurt housing recovery by hampering first-time buyers

The growing student loan burden carried by millions of Americans threatens to undermine the housing recovery's momentum by discouraging, or even blocking, a generation of potential buyers from purchasing their…

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Lawmaker challenges Parnell administration on commitment to renewable energy

In 2010, the state adopted an energy policy that, among other things, set a goal of having 50 percent Alaska's electric generation come from renewable and alternative energy sources by…

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