Alaska News Nightly: August 8, 2008

After several years of overall improvement, the Percentage of Alaska schools making “Adequate Yearly Progress” declines. Plus, some state jobs are being relocated from Juneau to Anchorage. Also, The interior village of Nenana struggles to overcome the damage from this week’s flooding.  And a good old-fashioned tale of Alaskan courage and survival. Those stories and more tonight on Alaska News Nightly, broadcast statewide on APRN stations.

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Percentage of Alaska schools making “Adequate Yearly Progress” declines
Len Anderson, KSKA – anchorage
After five years of steady, if sometimes incremental improvement, the latest report from the Alaska Deparment of Education and Early Development  shows that the percentage of Alaska public schools making adequate yearly progress as defined by the federal “No Child Left Behind Act” has dropped.

Some state jobs being relocated to Anchorage

John Ryan, KTOO – Juneau
State officials are relocating some Juneau jobs to Anchorage or Fairbanks when they fail to fill job openings advertised for the capital city. Information technology positions are among those that have been moved away from Juneau.

Nenana struggles with lingering effects of flooding

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks
The city of Nenana continues to deal with fall out from this week’s flooding.  The city issued a boil water order yesterday.  Nenana Mayor Jason Mayrand says the directive was due to concerns that city water has been compromised.

State trumpets predator control
Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks
The state of Alaska is trying to get out the word on the importance of predator control.

Alaskans beginning to look at alternative energy solutions

Steve Heimel, APRN – Anchorage
The emergency fuel assistance measures passed by the Legislature yesterday may be just the beginning of a major public policy adjustment to the high price of oil.  Renewable energy is the buzzword of the day.  Already windmills are popping up all over the bush, and an experimental hydropower turbine is going into the Yukon River at Eagle.  Transportation projections are being rethought as commuters drive less and begin pressing for mass transit.  One of the speakers at this weekend’s Renewable Energy Fair in Anchorage says that places like Alaska will be among the first to make the changes needed to face an era of great energy uncertainty.

Non-profit works with Forest Service to maintain Tongass cabins

Joe Viechnicki, KFSK – Petersburg
A non-profit organization is partnering with the U.S. Forest Service to maintain recreation cabins on the Tongass National Forest. Friends of the Tongass Cabins is a relatively new organization seeking to help the government agency keep the over 150 remote cabins open and in good shape.

A story of Alaskan survival

Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage
Growing up, John Tippets remembers hearing his dad Joe tell the incredible story of how he survived a plane crash in Southeast Alaska. Now, Tippets has a new book out describing the event. “Hearts of Courage”  recounts how Joe and three others endured 30 days on a mountainside near Ketchikan, before finally organizing their own rescue.