Alaska News Nightly: December 9, 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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Assistant District Attorney Killed In Barrow

Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage

An assistant district attorney was shot and killed in Barrow last night. Brian Sullivan was killed some time before midnight. Trooper spokeswoman Megan Peters says Barrow Police requested State Troopers and the Alaska Bureau of Investigation to take over the investigation.

How Murkowski Played Dealmaker to Get Controversial Lands Package

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington DC

The Senate is expected to pass a major public lands package this week as a rider to the annual defense bill. Sen. Lisa Murkowski was one of the key negotiators on this controversial compromise, which has split advocacy groups on the right and left. APRN’s Liz Ruskin examines what it took to free these bills from Congressional quagmire and reports that Murkowski is planning more of the same when she becomes a committee chairman in the New Year.

Bill to Remove Alaska Exception to VAWA Passes in U.S. Senate

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington DC

A bill to remove the Alaska exception from the Violence Against Women Act cleared the Senate on Tuesday.

Sullivan Announces New Hires for DC Office

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington DC

U.S. Senator-elect Dan Sullivan has chosen Joe Balash as his chief of staff. Balash served in the Parnell Administration as Commissioner of Natural Resources, after Sullivan resigned last year to run for office.

St. Vincent de Paul to Build 41 Affordable Housing Units for Seniors

Lisa Phu, KTOO – Juneau

Juneau nonprofit St. Vincent de Paul and partner agency Seattle-based GMD Development have been awarded $9 million in tax credit financing from the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation. The award will allow the agencies to build 41 units of affordable housing in the capital city for low income seniors.

New Hoonah Dock Could Boost Tourism Numbers

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau

Hoonah’s Icy Strait Point tourist attraction will see more visitors once a new cruise ship dock is built. That’s according to officials, who expect it to attract more cruise lines to the town 50 miles west of Juneau. But critics worry the location will not help the rest of the city.

Climate Change and Alaska Natives: Food

Joaqlin Estus, KNBA – Anchorage

Wild foods are important to Alaskans, and especially to rural residents, but subsistence users and scientists say climate change is affecting wildlife populations, access to subsistence resources, and food preservation.

‘Sandbar Mitchell’ Restoration Takes New Approach

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

Restoration of a World War II bomber salvaged from a Tanana River sandbar will benefit from a similar relic in Nome. Some of the parts needed to restore the plane known as “Sandbar Mitchell” will be come from another B-25 that crashed in Nome over 70 years ago.