Alaska News Nightly: November 7, 2007

Two Alaskan Soldiers die in Iraq; The Indian Health Care Improvement Act gains momentum in U.S. House Plus, the Alaska Municipal League holds its annual meeting in Fairbanks.  Those stories and more on tonight’s Alaska News Nightly, broadcast statewide on APRN stations.

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Two more Alaska soldiers die in Iraq.
David Shurtleff, APRN – Anchorage
34-year-old Staff Sergeant Carletta Davis of Anchorage and 24-year-old Sergeant Derek Stenroos of North Pole died Monday when a bomb went off next to their Humvee in an area west of Kirkuk.

Indian Health Care Improvement Act gains momentum in U.S. House
Joel Southern, APRN – Washington, D.C.
Legislation to renew and expand the Indian Health Care Improvement Act took a step forward in the U-S House today. It was approved by the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health and goes next to the full committee. The Indian Health Care Improvement Act has not been revamped since 1992, and that authorization lapsed six years ago.

Palin Administration dicusses climate change
Ben Markus, KUAC – Fairbanks
Governor Palin’s Sub-cabinet on Climate Change met in Fairbanks yesterday.

Alaska Municipal League meets in Fairbanks
Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks
Mayors, city council and assembly members from across the state are in Fairbanks for the Alaska Municipal League’s local government conference. The focus of the annual AML meeting is lining out the communities priorities for the next session of the state legislature.

Anchorage Assembly votes out IM test
Len Anderson, KSKA – Anchorage
On January 1st, 2010, Anchorage drivers will no longer be paying about 60 dollars for an vehicle inspection/maintenance test. Last night the Anchorage Assembly overwhelmingly backed dropping the requirement that every two years city residents have their vehicles checked for carbon monoxide emissions.

Undersized crab haul sets a record in Wrangell
Lisa Phu, KSTK – Wrangell
Alaska wildlife troopers are handling a case involving one of the highest percentages of undersized crab in recent history. Troopers report the F/V Leanna Sea, owned and operated by Joseph D. Janssen of Wrangell, delivered more than 23,000 pounds of Dungeness crab to Sea Level Seafood on October 29th. Well more than 4,000 of the crab were undersized.

History shows oil taxes paramount to Alaska’s survival
Anne Sutton, KTOO – Juneau
Alaska’s first oil severance tax was a simple one percent of gross production.  Now days, oil taxes are complicated formulas designed to bring in state revenue as well as encourage more production from declining fields and spur investment in new fields and technology. Nearly 90 percent of the state of Alaska’s income comes from oil, but in the last 20 years production has dropped by two-thirds.  And current sky-high prices are only a temporary buffer against declining revenue.

The end of an era in Unalaska
Charles Homans, KIAL – Unalaska/Dutch Harbor
On Sunday, residents of Unalaska bid farewell to one of the most storied drinking establishments in modern Alaskan history. It used to be called the Elbow Room, a notorious bar that was synonymous with the high-rolling, often violent culture of Bering Sea crab fishing in the late 70s and early 80s. It was renamed Latitudes in its final years, and closed once and for all this weekend.