Alaska News Nightly: April 3, 2008

The assistant engineer on the Alaska Ranger admits to drinking on the ship. Plus, Senator Stevens calls for moratorium on commercial fishing in arctic waters. And
two leading bond rating agencies issue alert about TransCanada. Those stories and more on tonight’s Alaska News Nightly, broadcast statewide on APRN stations.

Individual news stories are posted in the Alaska News category and you can subscribe to APRN’s news feeds via e-mail, podcast and RSS.

Senator Stevens calls for moratorium on commercial fishing in arctic waters
Joel Southern, APRN – Anchorage
Senator Ted Stevens hopes to get top Bush Administration officials and the United Nations actively involved in pushing for no commercial fishing in the Arctic waters off Alaska until a multinational management plan can be devised.

Alaska Ranger crewman admits to drinking on the ship

Charles Homans, KIAL – Unalaska
The assistant engineer on the Alaska Ranger admitted Wednesday to drinking alcohol on the factory trawler. But Rodney Lundy said he never did it during his watch on the ship, which sank in the Bering Sea late last month.

Two leading bond rating agencies issue alert about TransCanada.
Dave Donaldson, APRN – Juneau
The company is the Palin administration’s preliminary choice to develop a natural gas line from the North Slope.The reviews by both Moody’s Investor’s Service and Standard and Poor’s Ratings Services follow the company’s $2.8 billion purchase yesterday of an electrical generating facility in New York State.

St. Mary’s alcohol shipment being investigated

Angela Denning-Barnes
Anchorage law enforcement officials are investigating over 100 bottles of alcohol being shipped to the Lower Yukon village of Saint Mary’s.

Spawn-on-kelp fishery returns for second year

Lisa Phu, KSTK – Wrangell
For a second year, the Department of Fish and Game will have a spawn-on-kelp fishery in the Wrangell/Petersburg area. The first Ernest sound fishery took place in 2004 with roughly 50 permit holders.

Alaska’s elite wild land fire fighters prep for another season.
Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks
Alaska Fire Service smokejumper operations supervisor Rob Allen in Fairbanks says the Bureau of Land Management is beginning the annual process of getting trained up for fire season. He says that will culminate with the selection of some new smokejumpers.

Teens take part in Anchorage election process

Len Anderson, KSKA – Anchorage
Various attempts to lure young adults to the polls at election time seemed to have enjoyed only limited success. But an idea tried during Tuesday’s municipal election in Anchorage actually had to turn some teens away.

Young Alaska skiers participate in Junior Olympics
Rosemarie Alexander, KTOO – Juneau
Juneau and Anchorage high school skiers have been competing this past week in the Western Region Junior Olympics at Mount Bachelor in Bend, Oregon. Others are recently back from a JO event for younger racers at Bogus Basin in Boise, Idaho. Still others will go to spring race series at other ski resorts in the West.