Alaska News Nightly: October 29, 2014

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Alaska Public Media, Alaska Dispatch News Take State To Court Over National Guard Documents

Anne Hillman, KSKA – Anchorage

Alaska Public Media and Alaska Dispatch News are taking the State to court because the state government has failed to provide documents regarding the National Guard Scandal.

The two media outlets sued the state on Oct. 8 after being denied public records requests filed last spring. The Attorney General’s office agreed to provide emails, documents, and document logs related to the scandal to avoid going to court. To this date, they have only provided a few emails.

The media outlets are asking the courts to expedite the process and hear the suit as soon as possible. They want the Governor’s Office to provide the documents before next week’s election.

In the request to the court, the media outlets say they believe the Attorney General’s office is trying to get the documents but they are reaching a bottleneck at the Governor’s Office.

The judge will hold a hearing on the issue tomorrow afternoon.

Medicaid Reform Group Hears Passionate Testimony On Proposed Cuts

Annie Feidt, APRN – Anchorage

The State’s Medicaid Reform Advisory Group has met for the last six months in relative obscurity. That changed today (Wednesday) when more than 200 parents, doctors and therapists showed up to testify about a list of proposed “innovations” the group hopes will help curtail the growing cost of the program. The message the group heard was that the reforms would have huge impacts on the people who rely on Medicaid for health services.

DOJ May Intervene In Alaska Supreme Court Case

Jennifer Canfield, KTOO – Juneau

The U.S. Department of Justice may intervene in an Alaska Supreme Court case concerning a non-Native couple’s adoption of an Alaska Native child. In September, the Native Village of Tununak lost its appeal against the State of Alaska and the adoptive couple.

GOP’s U.S. Senate , House Hopefuls Try To Tie Democratic Foes To Obama, Reid et al.

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

Candidates for Alaska’s seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate squared off at a forum in Fairbanks Tuesday.

Wrangell Doctor Pleads Not Guilty To Child Porn Charges

Matt Miller, KTOO – Juneau

A jury trial is set for early January for a Wrangell doctor accused of distributing and viewing child pornography.

Property Crime Victims Often Given The Back Seat

Quinton Chandler, KBBI – Homer

Nikiski residents are frustrated by a recent rash of property crimes and are dissatisfied with law enforcement’s response. A state agency set up to help crime victims claims there is a larger trend of disenfranchisement among property crime victims across Alaska.

Unalaska Holds On As America’s Top Fishing Port

Lauren Rosenthal, KUCB – Unalaska

The port of Dutch Harbor will hang onto its title as the nation’s busiest fishing port for another year.

Alaska Ranks Among Nation’s Least Energy-Efficient States

Tim Ellis, KUAC – Fairbanks

Alaska rates near the bottom in a nationwide survey on how states are improving energy-efficiency programs. A state energy official says the survey may not be giving Alaska enough credit for the programs it has put in place in recent years.

New Geologic Materials Center Opens In Anchorage

Anne Hillman, KSKA – Anchorage

The State has a new library – for rocks. The new Geologic Materials Center opened in Anchorage Wednesday in what used to be the old Sam’s Club. The facility is aimed at giving industry members, academics and the public access to the wealth of data kept in core samples from around the state.