Alaska News Nightly: September 29, 2014

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

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Begich Touts Positive Relationship with Murkowski in Campaign Ad

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington, D.C.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski keeps trying to shake him off, but Sen. Mark Begich continues to insist they have a good working relationship.

Aleutian Towns Struggle To Retain Safety Officers

Lauren Rosenthal, KUCB – Unalaska

Two Aleutian communities are going without local law enforcement after their village public safety officers resigned.

Insurer: Affordable Care Act Needs A Fix In Alaska

Annie Feidt, APRN – Anchorage

The open enrollment period for signing up for health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act begins November 15th. Customers in Alaska who don’t receive subsidies will have to pay dramatically higher rates for next year’s coverage. And one insurer on the exchange, Premera Alaska, says the state needs to implement a new program to ensure future rate increases aren’t as steep.

‘No Means No’ – UAS Includes Sexual Assault Ed In Freshmen Orientation

Lisa Phu, KTOO – Juneau

Experts often refer to the first several weeks of college for new students as the “red zone” – a time when they’re more likely to be sexually assaulted. The University of Alaska system is on a list of 79 post-secondary schools being investigated by the U.S. Department of Education for compliance with sexual assault laws or violations. This year, the federal government updated guidelines requiring colleges to proactively combat sexual assault by talking to students about consent.

Warm Spell Helps Growers Salvage Harvest After Cool, Soggy Summer

Tim Ellis, KUAC – Fairbanks

Gardeners and farmers around the Interior have pretty much shut down for the winter after a cool, rainy, and for many, disappointing growing season. Some growers salvaged a decent yield by diversifying their crops – and taking advantage of a late-season warm spell to do some last-minute harvesting.

Proposed Film/Photo Regs in Wilderness Areas Come Under Fire

Jennifer Canfield, KTOO – Juneau

As conservationists celebrate 50 years since the passage of the Wilderness Act, a U.S. Forest Service proposal to make certain wilderness area regulations permanent has brought forth accusations that the agency is infringing on First Amendment rights. Nearly a third of the 17 million-acre Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska is designated wilderness.

Black Bear Party-Crashes A Ketchikan XC Meet

Emily Files, KRBD – Ketchikan

A black bear was in first place for a short time during one of the races at the Region V Cross Country meet Saturday in Ketchikan. Teams from around Southeast Alaska faced off for the chance to compete in the state championship. But the event took a chaotic turn when the first race was interrupted by a bear.