Alaska News Nightly: November 7, 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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Senate Passes Anti-Discrimination Bill

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington DC

Gay rights advocates are celebrating a win today in the nation’s capital. The U.S. Senate has passed a bill to ban workplace discrimination against gay and transgender people. Both Alaska senators voted for it. But, the bill is unlikely to become law.

Shell Oil Works To Revive Arctic Drilling Program

Lauren Rosenthal, KUCB – Unalaska

Shell Oil is taking measures to revive its troubled Arctic drilling program.

Groups Hail Court Ruling On Lease Sale Reviews

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The Alaska Supreme Court is standing behind a decision it issued last spring, affirming that the state must consider cumulative impacts of exploration and development as it reviews oil and gas leases. Opposing sides in the case have differing views on the significance of the decision.

Rodell Named Revenue Commissioner

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

After serving as acting revenue commissioner for the past three months, Angela Rodell now officially has the job.

Salvage Efforts On Hold For F/V Arctic Hunter

Annie Ropeik, KUCB – Unalaska

Rough weather is taking a toll on the grounded fishing vessel Arctic Hunter, which has been stuck on the rocks outside Unalaska since last Friday.

Fukushima Contamination Could Reach Alaska Waters Next Year

Joaqlin Estus, KNBA – Anchorage

It’s been almost three years since a tsunami hit the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan leading to releases of contaminated water into the ocean, and leaks from the plant are still not fully contained.  Computer models indicate only minuscule amounts of contamination will reach Alaskan waters this year or next. But one expert says comprehensive sampling is needed to check radiation levels.

Top 10 Things Alaskans Want To Know About Healthcare

Lisa Phu, KTOO – Juneau

Alaskans took their healthcare questions to health insurance marketplace experts at a forum in Juneau Monday.

Officials Say Dirt, Birds Doubled ML&P Project Cost

Daysha Eaton, KSKA – Anchorage

The cost of prep work on a new power plant that Municipal Light and Power is building is now double what it was budgeted at. Anchorage Assembly grilled the power company’s manager about increased cost at Tuesday’s meeting of the Anchorage Assembly.

UAA Engagement Week Highlights Community

Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage

The University of Alaska Anchorage is hosting community engagement events this week. The focus is on being urban in Alaska. Bree Kessler is an assistant professor for Health Sciences at the center for community engagement and learning. She says on Saturday a pop up museum will appear for a few hours in a downtown neighborhood.

Sitka Named Alaska’s First ‘Walk-Friendly’ Community

Rachel Waldholz, KCAW – Sitka

Sitka has been named one of the most pedestrian-friendly cities in America.