Alaska News Nightly: June 3, 2009

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Legislators Want Time to Override Palin Veto of Stimulus Funds
Dave Donaldson, APRN – Juneau
Legislative leaders are requesting time to override Governor Sarah Palin’s veto last month of $28 million in federal energy stimulus grants.   In a letter from the House and Senate presiding officers — as well as finance committee co-chairs — to Energy Secretary Steven Chu, the lawmakers point out that the vetoes came too late for them to deal with during this year’s session.

Energy Committee Focusing on Renewable Power
Libby Casey, APRN – Washington DC
The Senate Energy Committee is working its way through a massive draft energy bill that focuses heavily on renewable power.  Tomorrow the committee will gather to “mark-up” or debate and amend the legislation.  Their focus will be a national renewable electricity standard.

GAO Report Wants Flood Assessment for Alaska Villages
Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage
A new report from the Government Accountability Office is recommending a full flooding assessment for the more than 200 villages in Alaska. The study also finds many villages at the highest risk of erosion aren’t getting the help they need to relocate because there is no clear state or federal agency in charge.

Lower Yukon Residents Get More Tough News on Fishing
Shane Iverson, KYUK
There’s more tough news for residents on the Lower Yukon still recovering from spring flooding.  The Alaska Department of Fish and Game says there will be no commercial fishery this year and subsistence fishing will be restricted.

Eagle to Replace Transmission Lines
Dan Bross, KUAC
The electric and telephone utility that serves Eagle is planning to replace transmission lines taken out by flooding, and move ahead with a hydro project.  Alaska Power and Telephone president Bob Grim says high water and ice caused substantial damage to the utilities infrastructure in Eagle.

Tanker Strikes Humpback Whale
The Associated Press and Jay Barrett, KMXT – Kodiak
An oil tanker struck an endangered humpback whale and carried it on its bow into Port Valdez. Crewmen Monday on an escort vessel spotted the 40- to 50-foot whale along the water line of the tanker Kodiak as it docked. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration spokeswoman Sheila McLean says the whale was lodged on the bulbous protrusion of the ship’s bow.

Juneau Man Completes Shoreline Journey
Nicholas Szatkowski, KHNS – Haines
After several years of extraordinary effort, Juneau resident Mike Miller has finally completed his goal of traveling by human power the entire shoreline of the Lynn Canal from Juneau to Haines.