December-Issue-2 2012

 

Archive »AJC Issue Archive Departments

Aid package includes money for marine debris

A proposed $60.4 billion federal disaster aid package includes money for marine debris removal. But it's not clear how much might go toward clearing West Coast beaches of debris from the 2011 Japan earthquake and tsunami.

Weekly US jobless aid applications drop to 343K

The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits fell sharply for a fourth straight week, a sign that the job market may be improving.

Top central banks extend dollar-lending program

Major central banks acted Thursday to try to shore up confidence in the global financial system by extending a program that makes it easier for banks to borrow U.S. dollars.

Bethel Oks hike in tax on tobacco products

Soon it will be more expensive to be a tobacco user in Bethel. At Tuesday's meeting the Bethel City Council passed an ordinance that will increase taxes on all tobacco products sold in the city.

Karzai says he'll meet with Obama in Washington

President Hamid Karzai said Thursday he will meet President Barack Obama in Washington next month to discuss a postwar U.S. role in his country, whose fragile security was highlighted hours earlier by a suicide bombing that killed one U.S. troop and two Afghan civilians.

Lawmakers seek to rekindle mining reform efforts

While the U.S. government reaps billions of dollars in royalties each year from fossil fuels extracted from federal lands and waters, it does not collect any such royalties from gold, uranium or other metals mined from the same places, congressional auditors reported Wednesday.

Stocks advance after Fed pledges more stimulus

Stocks rose, extending a winning streak, after the Federal Reserve said it will continue to boost the U.S. economy.

2nd whaling commission exec sentenced

A second former executive director of the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission has been sentenced in Anchorage's federal court for stealing from the organization.

Fed projects high unemployment for next 3 years

The Federal Reserve projects the unemployment rate will stay elevated until late 2015, suggesting it will keep short-term interest rates low for the next three years.

Obama's fiscal cliff strategy is tricky balance

Playing both sides, President Barack Obama is trying to balance his public pressure campaign on Republicans over the looming "fiscal cliff" with his private negotiations with GOP leaders.

Voter disdain spreads as 'fiscal cliff' looms

Fear and frustration course through the lunch crowd at Robie's Country Store and Deli, a popular outpost 500 miles from where Washington is again locked in tense negotiations over taxes and spending as a critical deadline looms.

Shoppers can save as retailers go head-to-head

This holiday season, the hottest trend among retailers isn't found on a store shelf. It's taking place at the cash register.

Obama tax plan no small deal to small businessmen

President Barack Obama's plan to increase taxes on top earners would have only a small impact on the nation's economy, according to congressional budget experts. But don't tell that to small business owners facing a tax hike.

Stocks gain on optimism of budget talks progress

The stock market sprang back to life Tuesday, putting the Dow Jones industrial average on track for its biggest gain this month, following hopeful signs of progress in budget talks being held in Washington.

Governor considers state ownership of LNG plant

Gov. Sean Parnell is considering state ownership of a gas liquefaction plant on the North Slope, a state official told a group of Interior citizens.

Breathers beware: Particulate fouls icy Fairbanks

Stanford University Medical Center doctors gave Alex Lee a parting gift at the end of his heart operations earlier this year: surgeon's masks.

Obama heading to Michigan to push taxes on rich

President Barack Obama is pressing for public support Monday to raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans, a day after he and House Speaker John Boehner met one-on-one for the first time to discuss ways to avert the "fiscal cliff."

Stocks edge higher; Dow is boosted by McDonald's

Stocks inched higher on Wall Street Monday after a strong sales report from McDonald's helped offset concerns about the surprise resignation of Italy's prime minister, Mario Monti.

Canada to block further Chinese ownership

Canada's natural resource minister says foreign state control of the country's oil sands sector has reached the point where further ownership would not benefit Canada.

Senator seeks $15M for tsunami debris

An Alaska senator wants $15 million for tsunami debris cleanup on the West Coast included in a federal disaster relief package for states affected by Superstorm Sandy.

AFN moves to Fairbanks in 2013

The Alaska Federation of Natives convention is returning to Fairbanks in 2013.

Stocks mixed as investors work through jobs report

The stock market was mixed Friday after the government released its latest jobs report.

Snow-savvy Midwest cities breaking no-snow records

No snow boots needed in Milwaukee. Chicago commuters aren't dodging knee-deep snow drifts frozen along city sidewalks. And children in Des Moines are settling for ice shavings dumped from a Zamboni.

Boehner: No progress in fiscal cliff talks

House Speaker John Boehner said Friday there has been no progress in negotiations to avert a "fiscal cliff" combination of automatic tax increases and spending cuts in January and called on President Barack Obama to produce a new offer.

Alaska scales back ferry project

The state is scrapping plans for a 350-foot ferry in favor of two smaller ships. The move came after estimates to build the larger boat grew from $120 million to $167 million, Gov. Sean Parnell announced Tuesday in Ketchikan.

Debt limit gives GOP leverage, Obama demands fix

The political fight that took the nation to the verge of defaulting on its debts last year is back, overshadowed by "fiscal cliff" disputes but with consequences far graver than looming tax hikes and steep spending cuts.

Lonely Planet makes Fairbanks a top pick

Lonely Planet has named Fairbanks its No. 2 travel destination in the U.S.

Apple to produce line of Macs in the US next year

Apple CEO Tim Cook says the company will produce one of its existing lines of Mac computers in the United States next year.

Meningitis victims can likely inspect pharmacy

Victims of a meningitis outbreak tied to a Massachusetts compounding pharmacy will likely be allowed to do an exhaustive inspection of the facility, a federal judge said Thursday.

Archive »Transportation

Senator seeks $15M for tsunami debris

An Alaska senator wants $15 million for tsunami debris cleanup on the West Coast included in a federal disaster relief package for states affected by Superstorm Sandy.
Port MacKenzie project back on track

Port MacKenzie project back on track

Marc Van Dongen is a big man with bigger plans. As director of Port MacKenzie he oversees all operations across Knik Arm from Anchorage, including the largest project at the port since it was built in 1999: the rail extension from Houston to Port MacKenzie.

COMMENTARY: Action needed to reduce risk of Arctic shipping disaster

When the 738-foot Malaysian freighter Selendang Ayu grounded in Alaska’s Aleutian Islands eight years ago this week, it was a tragic reminder of the growing risks of northern shipping. While in-route from Seattle to China, in a fierce Bering Sea storm, the ship’s engine failed.
Palmer flight school offers range of aviation opportunities

Palmer flight school offers range of aviation opportunities

Artic Wikle and Ken More are friends first and business partners second.

Alaska scales back ferry project

The state is scrapping plans for a 350-foot ferry in favor of two smaller ships. The move came after estimates to build the larger boat grew from $120 million to $167 million, Gov. Sean Parnell announced Tuesday in Ketchikan.

Archive »Tourism

Lonely Planet makes Fairbanks a top pick

Lonely Planet has named Fairbanks its No. 2 travel destination in the U.S.

Archive »Oil & Gas

Governor considers state ownership of LNG plant

Gov. Sean Parnell is considering state ownership of a gas liquefaction plant on the North Slope, a state official told a group of Interior citizens.

Canada to block further Chinese ownership

Canada's natural resource minister says foreign state control of the country's oil sands sector has reached the point where further ownership would not benefit Canada.
Complex market picture for Alaska LNG export project

Complex market picture for Alaska LNG export project

The market situation for an Alaska gas pipeline and liquefied natural gas project may be getting more complicated and uncertain, a respected U.S. energy analyst said Nov. 28.

Archive »Technology

Review: Gift guide to full-size tablets

NEW YORK (AP) — Tablets are at the top of many wish lists this holiday season. But what to get? The choice used to be pretty limited, with the iPad dominating the latecomers. But this year, the field is more even, as tablets from Apple’s competitors have matured. In addition, Google and Microsoft are diving in with their own tablets, providing more choice.
Smaller tablets better all around in 2012

Smaller tablets better all around in 2012

NEW YORK (AP) — The tablet computer is without a doubt the gift of the season — just like it was last year. But if you resisted the urge in 2011, now is the time to give in. This season’s tablets are better all around. Intense competition has kept prices very low, making tablets incredible values compared to smartphones and PCs.

Apple to produce line of Macs in the US next year

Apple CEO Tim Cook says the company will produce one of its existing lines of Mac computers in the United States next year.

Archive »Alaska Politics

Governor considers state ownership of LNG plant

Gov. Sean Parnell is considering state ownership of a gas liquefaction plant on the North Slope, a state official told a group of Interior citizens.

Senator seeks $15M for tsunami debris

An Alaska senator wants $15 million for tsunami debris cleanup on the West Coast included in a federal disaster relief package for states affected by Superstorm Sandy.

Archive »National Politics

Karzai says he'll meet with Obama in Washington

President Hamid Karzai said Thursday he will meet President Barack Obama in Washington next month to discuss a postwar U.S. role in his country, whose fragile security was highlighted hours earlier by a suicide bombing that killed one U.S. troop and two Afghan civilians.

Lawmakers seek to rekindle mining reform efforts

While the U.S. government reaps billions of dollars in royalties each year from fossil fuels extracted from federal lands and waters, it does not collect any such royalties from gold, uranium or other metals mined from the same places, congressional auditors reported Wednesday.

Fed projects high unemployment for next 3 years

The Federal Reserve projects the unemployment rate will stay elevated until late 2015, suggesting it will keep short-term interest rates low for the next three years.

Obama's fiscal cliff strategy is tricky balance

Playing both sides, President Barack Obama is trying to balance his public pressure campaign on Republicans over the looming "fiscal cliff" with his private negotiations with GOP leaders.

Voter disdain spreads as 'fiscal cliff' looms

Fear and frustration course through the lunch crowd at Robie's Country Store and Deli, a popular outpost 500 miles from where Washington is again locked in tense negotiations over taxes and spending as a critical deadline looms.

Obama heading to Michigan to push taxes on rich

President Barack Obama is pressing for public support Monday to raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans, a day after he and House Speaker John Boehner met one-on-one for the first time to discuss ways to avert the "fiscal cliff."

Senator seeks $15M for tsunami debris

An Alaska senator wants $15 million for tsunami debris cleanup on the West Coast included in a federal disaster relief package for states affected by Superstorm Sandy.

Boehner: No progress in fiscal cliff talks

House Speaker John Boehner said Friday there has been no progress in negotiations to avert a "fiscal cliff" combination of automatic tax increases and spending cuts in January and called on President Barack Obama to produce a new offer.

Obama warns GOP against another debt ceiling fight

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama warned Republicans on Dec. 5 against picking another fight over the nation’s debt ceiling, telling business leaders that it’s “not a game that I will play.”

Debt limit gives GOP leverage, Obama demands fix

The political fight that took the nation to the verge of defaulting on its debts last year is back, overshadowed by "fiscal cliff" disputes but with consequences far graver than looming tax hikes and steep spending cuts.

Archive »Finance

Top central banks extend dollar-lending program

Major central banks acted Thursday to try to shore up confidence in the global financial system by extending a program that makes it easier for banks to borrow U.S. dollars.

Stocks advance after Fed pledges more stimulus

Stocks rose, extending a winning streak, after the Federal Reserve said it will continue to boost the U.S. economy.

Fed projects high unemployment for next 3 years

The Federal Reserve projects the unemployment rate will stay elevated until late 2015, suggesting it will keep short-term interest rates low for the next three years.

Stocks gain on optimism of budget talks progress

The stock market sprang back to life Tuesday, putting the Dow Jones industrial average on track for its biggest gain this month, following hopeful signs of progress in budget talks being held in Washington.

Stocks edge higher; Dow is boosted by McDonald's

Stocks inched higher on Wall Street Monday after a strong sales report from McDonald's helped offset concerns about the surprise resignation of Italy's prime minister, Mario Monti.

Stocks mixed as investors work through jobs report

The stock market was mixed Friday after the government released its latest jobs report.

Archive »Editorials

EDITORIAL: Groups should pay contractors for lost wages

In a rare act for the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, a sensible decision was handed down Nov. 28 when a three-judge panel reversed an Oct. 1 stay that halted construction on the rail extension at Port MacKenzie.

COMMENTARY: Action needed to reduce risk of Arctic shipping disaster

When the 738-foot Malaysian freighter Selendang Ayu grounded in Alaska’s Aleutian Islands eight years ago this week, it was a tragic reminder of the growing risks of northern shipping. While in-route from Seattle to China, in a fierce Bering Sea storm, the ship’s engine failed.

COMMENTARY: All Alaska Energy Project is solution to unsustainable prices

“Why, in the midst of plenty, do Alaska’s rural communities pay the highest energy prices in the nation?” This is the question asked by the Commonwealth North coalition established to identify solutions to the challenge of energy in remote Alaskan communities.

Archive »Features

Palmer flight school offers range of aviation opportunities

Palmer flight school offers range of aviation opportunities

Artic Wikle and Ken More are friends first and business partners second.

Archive »Popular Politics

State forecasts $700 million drop in revenue next year

State forecasts $700 million drop in revenue next year

Revenues to the State of Alaska are expected to decline next year by about $700 million, the Department of Revenue said Dec. 4.

Archive »Bulletin Board

BULLETINS 12/09/12

BULLETINS 12/09/12

Cockles never safe to eat unless tested and purchased through proper outlet, Recount affirms upset in Southeast House race, Treadwell considering US Senate run in 2014

Archive »Mining

Lawmakers seek to rekindle mining reform efforts

While the U.S. government reaps billions of dollars in royalties each year from fossil fuels extracted from federal lands and waters, it does not collect any such royalties from gold, uranium or other metals mined from the same places, congressional auditors reported Wednesday.

Congressman scolds EPA on its Bristol Bay assessment

A congressional subcommittee chairman is asking tough questions about the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s draft “watershed assessment” of the Bristol Bay region, in which the agency attempts to document possible impacts of a large mine in the region.
State encouraged by Interior rare earth mineral findings

State encouraged by Interior rare earth mineral findings

FAIRBANKS — Alaska state geologists have reported favorable findings of critical minerals in a geological reconnaissance in Interior Alaska and Southeast Alaska, with indications of high concentrations of both light and heavy rare earth elements, or REEs.

Archive »Fishery Stories

Senator seeks $15M for tsunami debris

An Alaska senator wants $15 million for tsunami debris cleanup on the West Coast included in a federal disaster relief package for states affected by Superstorm Sandy.

Halibut cut likely for 9th year in row

Halibut catch limits could be cut for the ninth year in a row.

Processors denied in challenge to Gulf rockfish program

A Washington judge ruled to uphold the rockfish catch share program in the Gulf of Alaska on procedural grounds.

FISH FACTOR: Another harvest drop likely for halibut; coverage fees up

Halibut catches could be cut by 33 percent next year if proposed numbers get the nod by the International Pacific Halibut Commission next month.
Longliners not pleased with changes to observer program

Longliners not pleased with changes to observer program

Come January, a new observer program will take effect in the North Pacific, but not every boat is ready for it.

Archive »General News

Aid package includes money for marine debris

A proposed $60.4 billion federal disaster aid package includes money for marine debris removal. But it's not clear how much might go toward clearing West Coast beaches of debris from the 2011 Japan earthquake and tsunami.

Weekly US jobless aid applications drop to 343K

The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits fell sharply for a fourth straight week, a sign that the job market may be improving.

Karzai says he'll meet with Obama in Washington

President Hamid Karzai said Thursday he will meet President Barack Obama in Washington next month to discuss a postwar U.S. role in his country, whose fragile security was highlighted hours earlier by a suicide bombing that killed one U.S. troop and two Afghan civilians.

Bethel Oks hike in tax on tobacco products

Soon it will be more expensive to be a tobacco user in Bethel. At Tuesday's meeting the Bethel City Council passed an ordinance that will increase taxes on all tobacco products sold in the city.

Stocks advance after Fed pledges more stimulus

Stocks rose, extending a winning streak, after the Federal Reserve said it will continue to boost the U.S. economy.

2nd whaling commission exec sentenced

A second former executive director of the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission has been sentenced in Anchorage's federal court for stealing from the organization.

Fed projects high unemployment for next 3 years

The Federal Reserve projects the unemployment rate will stay elevated until late 2015, suggesting it will keep short-term interest rates low for the next three years.

Voter disdain spreads as 'fiscal cliff' looms

Fear and frustration course through the lunch crowd at Robie's Country Store and Deli, a popular outpost 500 miles from where Washington is again locked in tense negotiations over taxes and spending as a critical deadline looms.

Shoppers can save as retailers go head-to-head

This holiday season, the hottest trend among retailers isn't found on a store shelf. It's taking place at the cash register.

Obama tax plan no small deal to small businessmen

President Barack Obama's plan to increase taxes on top earners would have only a small impact on the nation's economy, according to congressional budget experts. But don't tell that to small business owners facing a tax hike.

Breathers beware: Particulate fouls icy Fairbanks

Stanford University Medical Center doctors gave Alex Lee a parting gift at the end of his heart operations earlier this year: surgeon's masks.

Canada to block further Chinese ownership

Canada's natural resource minister says foreign state control of the country's oil sands sector has reached the point where further ownership would not benefit Canada.

AFN moves to Fairbanks in 2013

The Alaska Federation of Natives convention is returning to Fairbanks in 2013.

Stocks mixed as investors work through jobs report

The stock market was mixed Friday after the government released its latest jobs report.

Snow-savvy Midwest cities breaking no-snow records

No snow boots needed in Milwaukee. Chicago commuters aren't dodging knee-deep snow drifts frozen along city sidewalks. And children in Des Moines are settling for ice shavings dumped from a Zamboni.
The Bookworm Sez: Know your clients, and yourself

The Bookworm Sez: Know your clients, and yourself

It takes all kinds to make a world — and a client list.
Senate version of Defense Authorization Act protects Eielson

Senate version of Defense Authorization Act protects Eielson

The Senate unanimously passed its version of the National Defense Authorization Act on Dec. 4, which includes provision that temporarily prevents the movement of F-16 Aggressor Squadron from Eielson Air Force Base in Fairbanks to Join Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage.
Foodie alert! New store offers international selections

Foodie alert! New store offers international selections

For foodies in Anchorage there’s a new treat. It’s Oil & Vinegar, a small store in Anchorage’s downtown Fifth Avenue mall that specializes in olive oils, vinegars, sauces and other food treats mainly from the Mediterranean.
Kitchenware, baked goods, can sweeten the holidays

Kitchenware, baked goods, can sweeten the holidays

Anchorage stores and bakeries offer a variety of gifts for food lovers, whether they love to cook or just like trying different treats.

Alaska scales back ferry project

The state is scrapping plans for a 350-foot ferry in favor of two smaller ships. The move came after estimates to build the larger boat grew from $120 million to $167 million, Gov. Sean Parnell announced Tuesday in Ketchikan.

Lonely Planet makes Fairbanks a top pick

Lonely Planet has named Fairbanks its No. 2 travel destination in the U.S.

Meningitis victims can likely inspect pharmacy

Victims of a meningitis outbreak tied to a Massachusetts compounding pharmacy will likely be allowed to do an exhaustive inspection of the facility, a federal judge said Thursday.