April-Issue-1 2013

 

Archive »AJC Issue Archive Departments

Energy issues on floor of House, Senate; committee tables oil tax

Some of the Legislature’s major energy issues of 2013 moved to the House and Senate floors Thursday.

Obama proposes tax credit for small businesses

Tax relief for small businesses that hired or gave raises to their workers last year is among the proposals that President Barack Obama revealed in his $3.8 trillion budget plan on Monday.

Agency plans workshops on harbor seal protections

The National Marine Fisheries Service is planning workshops in Juneau and Yakutat on April 22 and 23 to take comment on whether cruise ships or other vessels in glacial fjords disturb harbor seals.

Few details revealed in helicopter crash report

The National Transportation Safety Board preliminary report on the crash of an Alaska State Trooper helicopter gives few clues regarding the cause, but much more will be known following analysis of a cockpit imaging and flight data monitoring device, Alaska crash investigator Clint Johnson said Wednesday.

US rate on 30-year mortgage falls to 3.43 pct.

Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages fell sharply this week and moved closer to historic lows, keeping home-buying and refinancing attractive.

Airlines lagging in on-time performance

Airlines are struggling this year to get planes to the gate on time.

Alaskan prisoners heading home from Colo. jail

Alaskan prisoners housed in the Hudson Correctional Facility in northeast Colorado are heading home to new quarters after a temporary stay while a new jail was being built.

Obama budget: Trim Social Security, tax wealthy

President Barack Obama sent Congress a $3.8 trillion spending blueprint on Wednesday that strives to achieve a "grand bargain" to tame runaway deficits, raising taxes on the wealthy and trimming popular benefit programs including Social Security and Medicare.

Post office retreats on eliminating Saturday mail

The financially beleaguered Postal Service backpedaled on its plan to end Saturday mail delivery, conceding Wednesday that its gamble to compel congressional approval had failed.

Minutes show Fed supports stimulus through midyear

A majority of Federal Reserve policymakers want to continue extraordinary bond purchases to help boost the U.S. economy at least through the middle of the year, according to minutes from the Fed's last meeting released Wednesday.

ConocoPhillips delays its 2014 Chukchi Sea exploration plan

There’s a new setback for the planned oil and gas exploration offshore Arctic Alaska. ConocoPhillips will put its planned 2014 exploration drilling in the Chukchi Sea on hold, the company announced Wednesday in a press release.

House Finance Committee laboring through oil tax bill

The House Finance Committee has spent five days laboring through Gov. Sean Parnell’s proposal to revamp the state’s oil and gas production tax, and committee co-chair Rep. Bill Stoltze, R-Chugiak says he hoped to move Senate Bill 21 on its way soon.

Industry reps: Tax overhaul an improvement

An oil tax overhaul under consideration in Alaska would be a "game changer" and send a signal that the state is ready to compete for investment, a BP Alaska executive said Monday.

NTSB: Ferry fire likely caused by welding crew

Hot material left behind by a welding crew likely started a fire last year that caused as much as $750,000 damage to the Alaska state ferry Malaspina, according to the National Transportation Safety Board.

Moniz backs natural gas 'revolution'

Ernest Moniz, chosen by President Barack Obama to lead the Energy Department, says he will push to increase use of natural gas as a way to combat climate change even as the nation seeks to boost domestic energy production.

Admiral says US can intercept North Korean missile

U.S. defenses could intercept a ballistic missile launched by North Korea, the top U.S. military commander in the Pacific said Tuesday, as the relationship between the West and the communist government hit its lowest ebb since the end of the Korean War.

Stocks edge higher as earnings start

Stocks rose modestly Tuesday as traders lacked a catalyst to push the market higher following a strong start to the year.

Lower revenues, oil production now estimated

The state Department of Revenue issued its spring oil revenue and production forecast Friday and is projecting lower North Slope oil petroleum revenues and production than were estimated in the fall forecast issued last December.

Judge reverses suspensions of 2 prosecutors

An administrative judge has reversed suspensions of two federal prosecutors who allegedly failed to turn over evidence to Sen. Ted Stevens necessary to his defense in his corruption trial.

Margaret Thatcher, Iron Lady, dead at 87

Love her or loathe her, one thing's beyond dispute: Margaret Thatcher transformed Britain.

PETA apologizes to Iditarod musher from Alaska

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has apologized to an Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race musher whose dog died at a checkpoint.

3 things to watch for in the Alaska Legislature

The end is near. Right? The Legislature is scheduled to adjourn from its 90-day session on Sunday, with a number of major pieces — oil taxes, budgets, an in-state gas line bill — still in play.

US Sen. Begich furloughing staff amid budget cuts

U.S. Sen. Mark Begich is furloughing more than half his staff and giving up part of his salary due to automatic budget cuts known as the sequester, his office said.

Obama seeks deal, proposes cuts to Social Security

President Barack Obama's proposed budget will call for reductions in the growth of Social Security and other benefit programs while still insisting on more taxes from the wealthy in a renewed attempt to strike a broad deficit-cutting deal with Republicans.

Opponents against oil tax overhaul rally

Opponents of a proposed oil tax overhaul rallied across the state, including on the steps of the state Capitol, Thursday, while a rewritten tax bill advanced in the Alaska House.

Stocks drop sharply after job growth disappoints

Stocks dropped sharply on Wall Street Friday after the government reported that U.S. employers added the fewest jobs in nine months in March and more people gave up looking for work. The report was worse than economists were expecting.
A powerful legacy

A powerful legacy

Gender discrimination and happenstance. Those are what launched Margie Brown’s successful corporate career that culminated in her job as president and chief executive officer of Cook Inlet Region Inc., one of 13 Native corporations formed under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

EDITORIAL: Congratulating the best and brightest of Alaska

As the managing editor of the Journal for a little less than a year, I can say with certainty that no project undertaken over that time can compare with choosing our annual Top Forty Under 40 class. I can also say with equal certainty that no other project has been as rewarding.

House committee works late altering oil tax reform bill

The House Resources Committee labored into the night April 2, hoping to finish its work on Senate Bill 21, the legislation changing state oil and gas production taxes that passed the Senate two weeks ago.

FISH FACTOR: Gulf catch shares debated; fishing remains deadliest job

A new plan is being crafted by federal managers for Gulf of Alaska groundfish fisheries that will reduce bycatch by trawlers, and it will very likely result in a catch share plan. Now is the time for fishing residents to make sure the new program protects their access to local resources and sustains, instead of drains, their coastal communities.

Multiple fisheries studies under way for Watana hydro

Fisheries studies are under way on the Susitna River north of Talkeetna as part of the regulatory process for the proposed Susitna-Watana Hydro project.
Idle ferry proves to be tough sell after lone bid opened

Idle ferry proves to be tough sell after lone bid opened

As any boat owner knows, they are expensive. The Matanuska-Susitna Borough’s venture into large boat ownership gets more expensive by the day with no easy way out.

CFEC responds to scrutiny of scallop limited entry program

COMMENTARY: Legislature must protect Alaska’s most valuable resource

On the door of a kindergarten classroom in Juneau, I saw a sign that read “Graduating Class of 2025.” What will 2025 be like? I don’t know. But as a school board member, I consider it a sacred public trust to prepare our kids for it.
Bulletin 04/07/13

Bulletin 04/07/13

Movers and Shakers 04/07/13

Race on to complete key bills as April 15 adjournment nears

The 2013 state legislative session is in its last week-and-a-half, with adjournment set for April 15. The state budget is the most important item of business for legislators, and House Speaker Mike Chenault and Senate President Charlie Huggins appointed conferees to the House-Senate conference committee April 2 for the state operating budget, in House Bill 65.

In-state pipeline faces time crunch for passage

Backers of an in-state pipeline are in a race for time to get a bill now passed by the state House through the Senate by the Legislature’s April 15 adjournment.

Sullivan: State wins in high court decision

Environmental groups are touting as a victory a March 29 state Supreme Court decision requiring a cumulative impacts analysis on oil and gas development decisions, but the state was the real winner according to Natural Resources Commissioner Dan Sullivan.
After 218 days, $500K in harbor fees, jack-up rig moves

After 218 days, $500K in harbor fees, jack-up rig moves

With little fanfare but much anticipation, a small group of residents watched early March 29 as the Endeavour-Spirit of Independence jack-up rig left the Homer Deep Water Dock en route to its drilling assignments.

Endeavour arrives at Cook Inlet Cosmopolitan drill site

A jack-up rig that has been in harbor in Homer since last fall undergoing modifications is now sited at the Cosmopolitan prospect three miles off Anchor Point, on the Kenai Peninsula. Drilling is expected to begin April 15.

Split decisions handed down for Alaska timber industry

A federal judge rejected the State of Alaska’s challenge of the Roadless Area Conservation Rule pertaining to national forests on March 25.
Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

At a Senate subcommittee field hearing about increased Arctic maritime activity March 27, participants from the government, private industry and nonprofits discussed the opportunities and challenges that will come with development.

Setnetters, sport guides stay guarded heading into 2013

There are some things Norm Darch has to buy for his Salamatof Beach setnet sites every year such as fuel, supplies for his crew, nets and maintenance on his equipment.

Alyeska studies effects of water in Trans-Alaska pipeline

Alyeska Pipeline Service Co. will conduct research to determine whether lowering the water content of crude will improve the performance of the trans-Alaska pipeline.

When will the register ring its last sale?

Ka-ching! The cash register may be on its final sale.

How to redecorate without overspending

With the housing recovery gaining steam, Americans have more incentives to paint up, touch up and otherwise redecorate their homes. But there’s no need to spend willy-nilly.

Archive »Transportation

Airlines lagging in on-time performance

Airlines are struggling this year to get planes to the gate on time.

NTSB: Ferry fire likely caused by welding crew

Hot material left behind by a welding crew likely started a fire last year that caused as much as $750,000 damage to the Alaska state ferry Malaspina, according to the National Transportation Safety Board.
Idle ferry proves to be tough sell after lone bid opened

Idle ferry proves to be tough sell after lone bid opened

As any boat owner knows, they are expensive. The Matanuska-Susitna Borough’s venture into large boat ownership gets more expensive by the day with no easy way out.
Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

At a Senate subcommittee field hearing about increased Arctic maritime activity March 27, participants from the government, private industry and nonprofits discussed the opportunities and challenges that will come with development.

Archive »Tourism

Agency plans workshops on harbor seal protections

The National Marine Fisheries Service is planning workshops in Juneau and Yakutat on April 22 and 23 to take comment on whether cruise ships or other vessels in glacial fjords disturb harbor seals.

Archive »Construction Articles

Multiple fisheries studies under way for Watana hydro

Fisheries studies are under way on the Susitna River north of Talkeetna as part of the regulatory process for the proposed Susitna-Watana Hydro project.

Archive »Oil & Gas

Energy issues on floor of House, Senate; committee tables oil tax

Some of the Legislature’s major energy issues of 2013 moved to the House and Senate floors Thursday.

ConocoPhillips delays its 2014 Chukchi Sea exploration plan

There’s a new setback for the planned oil and gas exploration offshore Arctic Alaska. ConocoPhillips will put its planned 2014 exploration drilling in the Chukchi Sea on hold, the company announced Wednesday in a press release.

House Finance Committee laboring through oil tax bill

The House Finance Committee has spent five days laboring through Gov. Sean Parnell’s proposal to revamp the state’s oil and gas production tax, and committee co-chair Rep. Bill Stoltze, R-Chugiak says he hoped to move Senate Bill 21 on its way soon.

Industry reps: Tax overhaul an improvement

An oil tax overhaul under consideration in Alaska would be a "game changer" and send a signal that the state is ready to compete for investment, a BP Alaska executive said Monday.

Moniz backs natural gas 'revolution'

Ernest Moniz, chosen by President Barack Obama to lead the Energy Department, says he will push to increase use of natural gas as a way to combat climate change even as the nation seeks to boost domestic energy production.

Lower revenues, oil production now estimated

The state Department of Revenue issued its spring oil revenue and production forecast Friday and is projecting lower North Slope oil petroleum revenues and production than were estimated in the fall forecast issued last December.

House committee works late altering oil tax reform bill

The House Resources Committee labored into the night April 2, hoping to finish its work on Senate Bill 21, the legislation changing state oil and gas production taxes that passed the Senate two weeks ago.

In-state pipeline faces time crunch for passage

Backers of an in-state pipeline are in a race for time to get a bill now passed by the state House through the Senate by the Legislature’s April 15 adjournment.

Sullivan: State wins in high court decision

Environmental groups are touting as a victory a March 29 state Supreme Court decision requiring a cumulative impacts analysis on oil and gas development decisions, but the state was the real winner according to Natural Resources Commissioner Dan Sullivan.
After 218 days, $500K in harbor fees, jack-up rig moves

After 218 days, $500K in harbor fees, jack-up rig moves

With little fanfare but much anticipation, a small group of residents watched early March 29 as the Endeavour-Spirit of Independence jack-up rig left the Homer Deep Water Dock en route to its drilling assignments.

Endeavour arrives at Cook Inlet Cosmopolitan drill site

A jack-up rig that has been in harbor in Homer since last fall undergoing modifications is now sited at the Cosmopolitan prospect three miles off Anchor Point, on the Kenai Peninsula. Drilling is expected to begin April 15.
Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

At a Senate subcommittee field hearing about increased Arctic maritime activity March 27, participants from the government, private industry and nonprofits discussed the opportunities and challenges that will come with development.

Alyeska studies effects of water in Trans-Alaska pipeline

Alyeska Pipeline Service Co. will conduct research to determine whether lowering the water content of crude will improve the performance of the trans-Alaska pipeline.

Archive »Alaska Politics

Energy issues on floor of House, Senate; committee tables oil tax

Some of the Legislature’s major energy issues of 2013 moved to the House and Senate floors Thursday.

House Finance Committee laboring through oil tax bill

The House Finance Committee has spent five days laboring through Gov. Sean Parnell’s proposal to revamp the state’s oil and gas production tax, and committee co-chair Rep. Bill Stoltze, R-Chugiak says he hoped to move Senate Bill 21 on its way soon.

Industry reps: Tax overhaul an improvement

An oil tax overhaul under consideration in Alaska would be a "game changer" and send a signal that the state is ready to compete for investment, a BP Alaska executive said Monday.

Lower revenues, oil production now estimated

The state Department of Revenue issued its spring oil revenue and production forecast Friday and is projecting lower North Slope oil petroleum revenues and production than were estimated in the fall forecast issued last December.

Judge reverses suspensions of 2 prosecutors

An administrative judge has reversed suspensions of two federal prosecutors who allegedly failed to turn over evidence to Sen. Ted Stevens necessary to his defense in his corruption trial.

3 things to watch for in the Alaska Legislature

The end is near. Right? The Legislature is scheduled to adjourn from its 90-day session on Sunday, with a number of major pieces — oil taxes, budgets, an in-state gas line bill — still in play.

US Sen. Begich furloughing staff amid budget cuts

U.S. Sen. Mark Begich is furloughing more than half his staff and giving up part of his salary due to automatic budget cuts known as the sequester, his office said.

Opponents against oil tax overhaul rally

Opponents of a proposed oil tax overhaul rallied across the state, including on the steps of the state Capitol, Thursday, while a rewritten tax bill advanced in the Alaska House.

House committee works late altering oil tax reform bill

The House Resources Committee labored into the night April 2, hoping to finish its work on Senate Bill 21, the legislation changing state oil and gas production taxes that passed the Senate two weeks ago.

COMMENTARY: Legislature must protect Alaska’s most valuable resource

On the door of a kindergarten classroom in Juneau, I saw a sign that read “Graduating Class of 2025.” What will 2025 be like? I don’t know. But as a school board member, I consider it a sacred public trust to prepare our kids for it.

Race on to complete key bills as April 15 adjournment nears

The 2013 state legislative session is in its last week-and-a-half, with adjournment set for April 15. The state budget is the most important item of business for legislators, and House Speaker Mike Chenault and Senate President Charlie Huggins appointed conferees to the House-Senate conference committee April 2 for the state operating budget, in House Bill 65.

In-state pipeline faces time crunch for passage

Backers of an in-state pipeline are in a race for time to get a bill now passed by the state House through the Senate by the Legislature’s April 15 adjournment.
Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

At a Senate subcommittee field hearing about increased Arctic maritime activity March 27, participants from the government, private industry and nonprofits discussed the opportunities and challenges that will come with development.

Archive »National Politics

Obama proposes tax credit for small businesses

Tax relief for small businesses that hired or gave raises to their workers last year is among the proposals that President Barack Obama revealed in his $3.8 trillion budget plan on Monday.

Obama budget: Trim Social Security, tax wealthy

President Barack Obama sent Congress a $3.8 trillion spending blueprint on Wednesday that strives to achieve a "grand bargain" to tame runaway deficits, raising taxes on the wealthy and trimming popular benefit programs including Social Security and Medicare.

Minutes show Fed supports stimulus through midyear

A majority of Federal Reserve policymakers want to continue extraordinary bond purchases to help boost the U.S. economy at least through the middle of the year, according to minutes from the Fed's last meeting released Wednesday.

Moniz backs natural gas 'revolution'

Ernest Moniz, chosen by President Barack Obama to lead the Energy Department, says he will push to increase use of natural gas as a way to combat climate change even as the nation seeks to boost domestic energy production.

Judge reverses suspensions of 2 prosecutors

An administrative judge has reversed suspensions of two federal prosecutors who allegedly failed to turn over evidence to Sen. Ted Stevens necessary to his defense in his corruption trial.

US Sen. Begich furloughing staff amid budget cuts

U.S. Sen. Mark Begich is furloughing more than half his staff and giving up part of his salary due to automatic budget cuts known as the sequester, his office said.

Obama seeks deal, proposes cuts to Social Security

President Barack Obama's proposed budget will call for reductions in the growth of Social Security and other benefit programs while still insisting on more taxes from the wealthy in a renewed attempt to strike a broad deficit-cutting deal with Republicans.

Archive »Finance

US rate on 30-year mortgage falls to 3.43 pct.

Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages fell sharply this week and moved closer to historic lows, keeping home-buying and refinancing attractive.

Minutes show Fed supports stimulus through midyear

A majority of Federal Reserve policymakers want to continue extraordinary bond purchases to help boost the U.S. economy at least through the middle of the year, according to minutes from the Fed's last meeting released Wednesday.

Stocks edge higher as earnings start

Stocks rose modestly Tuesday as traders lacked a catalyst to push the market higher following a strong start to the year.

Stocks drop sharply after job growth disappoints

Stocks dropped sharply on Wall Street Friday after the government reported that U.S. employers added the fewest jobs in nine months in March and more people gave up looking for work. The report was worse than economists were expecting.

Archive »Features

Margaret Thatcher, Iron Lady, dead at 87

Love her or loathe her, one thing's beyond dispute: Margaret Thatcher transformed Britain.
A powerful legacy

A powerful legacy

Gender discrimination and happenstance. Those are what launched Margie Brown’s successful corporate career that culminated in her job as president and chief executive officer of Cook Inlet Region Inc., one of 13 Native corporations formed under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

How to redecorate without overspending

With the housing recovery gaining steam, Americans have more incentives to paint up, touch up and otherwise redecorate their homes. But there’s no need to spend willy-nilly.

Archive »Bulletin Board

Bulletin 04/07/13

Bulletin 04/07/13

Archive »Fishery Stories

FISH FACTOR: Gulf catch shares debated; fishing remains deadliest job

A new plan is being crafted by federal managers for Gulf of Alaska groundfish fisheries that will reduce bycatch by trawlers, and it will very likely result in a catch share plan. Now is the time for fishing residents to make sure the new program protects their access to local resources and sustains, instead of drains, their coastal communities.

Multiple fisheries studies under way for Watana hydro

Fisheries studies are under way on the Susitna River north of Talkeetna as part of the regulatory process for the proposed Susitna-Watana Hydro project.

CFEC responds to scrutiny of scallop limited entry program

Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

Senate hearing focuses on managing Arctic activity

At a Senate subcommittee field hearing about increased Arctic maritime activity March 27, participants from the government, private industry and nonprofits discussed the opportunities and challenges that will come with development.

Setnetters, sport guides stay guarded heading into 2013

There are some things Norm Darch has to buy for his Salamatof Beach setnet sites every year such as fuel, supplies for his crew, nets and maintenance on his equipment.

Archive »General News

Few details revealed in helicopter crash report

The National Transportation Safety Board preliminary report on the crash of an Alaska State Trooper helicopter gives few clues regarding the cause, but much more will be known following analysis of a cockpit imaging and flight data monitoring device, Alaska crash investigator Clint Johnson said Wednesday.

Alaskan prisoners heading home from Colo. jail

Alaskan prisoners housed in the Hudson Correctional Facility in northeast Colorado are heading home to new quarters after a temporary stay while a new jail was being built.

Post office retreats on eliminating Saturday mail

The financially beleaguered Postal Service backpedaled on its plan to end Saturday mail delivery, conceding Wednesday that its gamble to compel congressional approval had failed.

Admiral says US can intercept North Korean missile

U.S. defenses could intercept a ballistic missile launched by North Korea, the top U.S. military commander in the Pacific said Tuesday, as the relationship between the West and the communist government hit its lowest ebb since the end of the Korean War.

PETA apologizes to Iditarod musher from Alaska

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals has apologized to an Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race musher whose dog died at a checkpoint.

Split decisions handed down for Alaska timber industry

A federal judge rejected the State of Alaska’s challenge of the Roadless Area Conservation Rule pertaining to national forests on March 25.

When will the register ring its last sale?

Ka-ching! The cash register may be on its final sale.

How to redecorate without overspending

With the housing recovery gaining steam, Americans have more incentives to paint up, touch up and otherwise redecorate their homes. But there’s no need to spend willy-nilly.