Alaska News Nightly: March 12, 2013

Individual news stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via emailpodcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter @aprn.

Download Audio

Race Leaders Leave White Mountain For Safety, Nome

Emily Schwing, KUAC – Fairbanks

Mitch Seavey left the Iditarod checkpoint of White Mountain at 1:11 this afternoon. Aliy Zirkle followed 13 minutes later. According to GPS, she is currently running about one mile behind Seavey.  Seavey is a former Iditarod champion. Zirkle’s best finish in the race was second, last year.

By 6:30 tonight, the tightly grouped top ten mushers in the field should all be on the final stretch of trail to Nome. APRN trail reporter Emily Schwing talked to the top mushers as they rested today in White Mountain. She says Seavey says he isn’t going to push his dogs too much on the final run.

Senate Committee Introduces New Version Of Oil Tax Bill

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

At today’s prices, Alaska’s oil tax system can be compared to those of Norway, Russia, and Venezuela in terms of how much money it puts in state coffers. A plan introduced by the Senate finance committee today would change that.  It’s a new version of the oil tax plan Governor Parnell introduced earlier this session.

Commercial Fishermen Lobby For Stricter Salmon Habitat

Peter Granitz, APRN – Washington DC

Commercial fishermen and tour operators from Southeast Alaska are in Washington D.C. this week, lobbying Congress to strengthen the protection of certain areas of the Tongass National Forest.

Alaska Broadcasters Line Up To Oppose GCI Purchase Of TV Stations

Rosemarie Alexander, KTOO – Juneau

It may be months before the Federal Communications Commission rules on GCI’s application to take over two small television stations in Southeast Alaska and one in Anchorage.  Commercial broadcasters have lined up to oppose the purchase and request a hearing before the commission, something the FCC is often reluctant to do.

The question hinges on whether the merger is in the public’s interest.

Anchorage Assembly Shuts Down Union Testimony, Extends AO37 Vote

Daysha Eaton, KSKA – Anchorage

The Anchorage Assembly voted 63 to shut down public testimony on a controversial proposal that would limit city unions last night.

Alaskans Impress At Junior Nordic Ski Nationals

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The junior national cross country ski championships are happening in Fairbanks this week.  Several Alaska skiers posted top performances yesterday.