Alaska News Nightly: August 13, 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.

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Congress Shows No Urgency On Voting Rights Act

Peter Granitz, APRN – Washington DC

In June, the United States Supreme Court struck down a key formula of the Voting Rights Act. Section IV of the 1965 law determined which states needed to get federal approval before changing any voting laws. Alaska was one of nine states subject to that rule known as preclearance. Immediately following the early summer ruling, a frustrated Attorney General Eric Holder condemned the decision.

Petersburg Concerned With Future of USCG In Community

Joe Viechnicki, KFSK – Petersburg

Petersburg officials are seeking answers about the future of Coast Guard ships in the community. Borough Mayor Mark Jensen sent a letter to Senator Mark Begich this month voicing concern that the cutter Anacapa could be replaced by larger vessels planned for other Southeast ports.

FBI Tapes Indicate Keyes Victims In Washington

The Associated Press

FBI records show that serial killer Israel Keyes told authorities that five people in Washington State were among his 11 victims. Keyes was caught after killing his last victim, Anchorage resident Samatha Koenig.

More details about the killings emerged (on Tuesday) when the FBI released more than six hours of interviews conducted before Keyes committed suicide in an Anchorage jail last December.

Keyes indicated one person was killed and buried near Neah Bay. A couple were murdered and buried, and two other people – in separate incidents – were killed and submerged in one or two lakes.

He gave authorities few other details.

The FBI has released the interviews and a timeline with the hope that someone might be able to match his movements in the past 12 years to missing people.

With Arctic Growth Looming, Airlines Put Off Planning

Lauren Rosenthal, KUCB – Unalaska

Executives at Alaska Airlines and Peninsula Airways admit that their service to Unalaska isn’t perfect. Lopsided demand for flights and rough Aleutian weather already make it tough for them to serve the community.

But huge demand from Arctic oil employees might make it even tougher.  As KUCB’s Lauren Rosenthal reports in a follow up to yesterday’s story, Unalaska faces an uphill battle to get better air service before growth picks up in the Arctic.

Ft. Wainwright Helicopters To Conduct Night-Flying Training

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

A Fort Wainwright based helicopter unit will be conducting night fly exercises later this month.  The Army Aviation Task Force training is scheduled to run two weeks beginning August 18th.  US Army Alaska-North Deputy Chief of Public Affairs Captain Patrick Sawicki says deployments, training and support missions have prevented this training from happening locally in the recent years.  He says the 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. helicopter operations will be conducted on Fort Wainwright as well as in the Yukon Training areas southeast of Fairbanks and the Donnelly Training area near Delta Junction.

Mississippi Fire Continues To Grow

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The Mississippi Fire continues to grow in the Interior. Managers of the wildfire west of Delta Junction, report an 11,000 acre gain Monday, swelling the burn area to over 52,000 acres total.

Hass Reels In Juneau Derby’s Biggest Fish

Lisa Phu, KTOO – Juneau

After more than two days of trolling for salmon during the Golden North Salmon Derby in Juneau, Jody Hass and her family were wrapping it up when one decided to bite.

State Fails To Meet Yukon Chinook Escapement Into Canada

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

Alaska has failed to meet the Yukon River Chinook escapement goal into Canada despite increased fishing restrictions this summer. An Alaska Department of Fish and Game sonar counter at Eagle counted 28,369 kings as of Aug. 8. With the run tailing off to just a few hundred fish a day, state Yukon area summer season manager Eric Newland says escapement into Canada will fall well short of this year’s minimum goal.

Skagway Sees Abundance Of Kings

Margaret Friedenauer, KHNS – Haines

An abundance of King salmon is not a phrase heard very often in Alaska this season, but abundance is exactly what the small Southeast community of Skagway has this summer at the mouth of a little pond and creek in the middle of town.