Alaska News Nightly: July 11, 2008

The 2nd special session of the legislature takes up Governor Palin’s plan for special energy rebates for Alaskans.. Plus, Ted Stevens talks national energy policy before a joint session of the state legislature. Also, Alaska sends fire-fighting equipment to California to help turn back wildfires.  Those stories and more on tonight’s Alaska News Nightly, broadcast statewide on APRN stations.

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Special session considers special energy rebate for Alaskans
Dave Donaldson, APRN – Juneau
Legislators today  opened hearings on Governor Palin’s proposal that all Alaskans get a one-time $1200 rebate to help meet high energy costs.

Ted Stevens weighs in on national energy issues in speech before legislature

Dave Donaldson, APRN – Juneau
Senator Ted Stevens did not use his presentation to the legislature today (Friday) to endorse either side in the ongoing consideration over issuing a license to TransCanada to develop a gas line from the North Slope to North American markets.

HHS conducts survey on health care for state seniors

Len Anderson, KSKA – Anchorage
As the percentage of Alaska’s 65 and older population rises, the issue of providing long term health care also looms ever larger.  That’s why the Department of Health and Human Services is conducting a survey to find the strengths and weakness of the current system. Keeping up with demand is tough enough in Alaska’s urban areas but in the bush, it can become almost overwhelming.

AKPIRG says stats show incumbents have an edge

Eli Menaker, APRN – Anchorage
A new study from the Alaska Public Interest Research Group or AKPIRG indicates that incumbent politicians and well funded campaigns have a much higher chance of winning in primary and general elections than their opponents.

Angoon residents have high hopes for new community leaders

Weld Royal, KTOO – Angoon
Eight months after Angoon ushered in a new city council, some residents of the Tlingit community on Admiralty Island in Southeast Alaska say they have a crop of new leaders with fresh ideas that could help solve entrenched problems.

Unalaska play host to NOAA research vessels
Anne Hillman, KIAL – Unalaska
Unalaska is hosting multiple research vessels this summer. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association’s Oscar Dyson left for the Russian border yesterday afternoon to complete a pollock survey. It was supposed to be joined by the Miller Freeman. But the Freeman had to stay behind.

Alaskan fire-fighting equipment heads to California
John Ryan, KTOO – Juneau
Alaskan fire engines are heading south to help with California’s record-breaking fire season.The State Logistics Center in Fairbanks is coordinating the transfer of four of Alaska’s largest fire engines to California. Three firefighters from Mat-Su and Chugiak will staff each engine while it’s down south.

Publishing the history of the Alaska Native Sisterhood

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau
The Alaska Native Sisterhood is nearly a century old. And in many ways, its history parallels that of Native women in and from Southeast. A new book chronicles the history of one of the sisterhood’s larger chapters, based in downtown Juneau.

I scream, you scream, Kodiak screams for ice cream

Mary Donaldson, KMXT – Kodiak
Kodiak residents don’t have to go far to satisfy their ice cream cravings, thanks to a new business in town.