Alaska News Nightly: April 21, 2010

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One Fisherman Dead, Three Rescued Northeast of Kodiak
Jay Barrett, KMXT – Kodiak
One fisherman is dead and three are safe after their fishing boat sank in the Gulf of Alaska Tuesday evening. The 75-foot Northern Belle went down about 50 miles south of Montague Island, or 235 miles northeast of Kodiak.

More Bandwidth Coming to SW Alaska
Shane Iverson, KYUK – Bethel
Another high speed internet project is coming to the Bethel and Dillingham area in Southwest Alaska. GCI has announced that it was awarded $88 million in Federal Stimulus funds to speed up, and expand, their existing service in rural Alaska.

Autopsy Reports Pending on 5th Homeless Inebriate
Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage
Autopsy results are pending on a fifth homeless inebriate found dead on Anchorage streets.  Anchorage police and social services leaders point to alcohol as the culprit behind the deaths, but some say the city could do a better job in providing help for the most helpless.

State Battling Wildfire Near Anderson
Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks
The state is fighting a wildfire near Anderson.  Division of Forestry Information officer Maggie Rogers says the fire was reported late last night about five miles south of the Parks Highway community.

Lawmakers Fund New Vets’ Cemetery in Fairbanks
Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks
There’s nearly a $1 million in the state capital budget for creation of a state veterans’ cemetery in Fairbanks.  State Representative David Guttenberg, who’s shepherded the project through the legislature for several years, says the commitment of state money prioritizes it for support from the federal Veterans Administration.

More Bills Failed Than Passed Last Session
Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau
More bills failed than passed during the legislative session that just ended. Many affected a small number of people, or proposed a minor change that can wait until another year.

Anchorage Needs to Keep Lobbying to Keep State Funds for City
Len Anderson, KSKA – Anchorage
Mayor Dan Sullivan happily described the municipality’s share of the statewide capital budget today at his weekly press conference. But Sullivan says keeping those legislative approved dollars will require some lobbying.

Elfin Cove Charter to Pay Fines for Overfishing
Ed Ronco, KCAW – Sitka
Elfin Cove-based Eagle Charters will pay tens of thousands of dollars after pleading guilty to charges that four of its fishing guides were caught overfishing during a state sting operation.

Coast Guard Investigates Oil Spill Claim
Tara Bicknell, KHNS – Haines
The U.S. Coast Guard investigated a reported oil spill in the northern Lynn Canal earlier this week. They didn’t found any sign of the substance, but did track down the probable source.

Petersburg Says “Cheese” for 100th Anniversary
Matt Lichtenstein, KFSK – Petersburg
Petersburg celebrated its centennial anniversary Tuesday afternoon with a massive, group photo. The mayor declared a half-day holiday and local organizers estimate as many as 15 hundred people, roughly half the population, turned out to the ball fields for the panoramic picture.