Alaska News Nightly: November 8, 2013

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Juneau Union Members Learn How To Talk About Right-To-Work

Casey Kelly, KTOO – Juneau

Nearly half of all states have right-to-work laws that prohibit contracts between employers and labor unions requiring workers to pay union dues.

Alaska is not one of them. But with a Republican dominated legislature and executive branch, it is seen as a state where right-to-work legislation could pass. No bills have been introduced here since 2011, and the issue does not seem to be a priority for business or political groups.

But labor groups remain concerned about the issue, and offered a training on it this week in Juneau.

Court Says Former Distracted Driving Law Was Unclear

The Associated Press

The Alaska Court of Appeals has found a former law was ambiguous with regard to whether it banned text messaging while driving.

Public Housing Rent Reform Set For 2014

Daysha Eaton, KSKA – Anchroage

Alaska Housing Finance Corporation is overhauling the state’s public housing system. Effective April 1, any family with one able-bodied adult in the household will see yearly rent increases. And after five years, the assistance will end and they’ll be responsible for paying their own rent. The changes will impact those renting public housing and those receiving voucher assistance to rent private units.

Warmer Temperatures Delay Bear Hibernation

Phillip Manning, KTNA – Talkeetna

Winter has been late in coming, this year. Temperatures are only now starting to get to levels near the seasonal norms. While that has meant extra time to split wood and change vehicle tires, it has also meant that bears have been active later in the year than usual.

Gourds Fly In Bethel With Pumpkin Trebuchet

Ben Matheson, KYUK – Bethel

Most old Halloween jack-o-lanterns ultimately end up in the trash.  But as a group of kids in Bethel learned, the gourds can still go out in a blaze of glory.

AK: Live TV

Jeremy Hsieh, KTOO – Juneau

Every week, a group of students at Juneau-Douglas High School put together a 10-minute, live television newscast for their video production class. They shoot the video, write the scripts, and edit their stories. They don’t have much of an audience; their most popular YouTube video has 57 views. But it’s really not about ratings.

300 Villages: Larsen Bay

This week, we’re heading to Larsen Bay, a small community on Kodiak Island. Kara Darling works for the tribal office in Larsen Bay.