Alaska News Nightly: Thursday, Jan. 14, 2016

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Slaughterhouse shutdown prompts ag community to mobilize

Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage

With a tough budget session starting next week, state lawmakers are getting ready  to make critical decisions. One comment often heard in discussing state revenues is “diversify the economy” to end dependency on oil money. So some Palmer ranchers says it does not make sense for state lawmakers to squash support for a home-grown Alaska industry: livestock.

City starts war on homelessness by sizing up the problem

Zachariah Hughes, KSKA – Anchorage

The Anchorage Mayor’s office is throwing its weight behind initiatives to end homelessness, a problem the administration says has intensified in recent years.

PFD voter initiative nets needed signatures for ballot

Brielle Schaffer, KCAW – Sitka

A statewide effort to make it easier for people to vote is culminating this week. On Jan. 14, petitioners submitted tens of thousands of required signatures to the Division of Elections to earn the PFD voter registration initiative a spot on a ballot this fall.

Environmentalists say Tongass plan doesn’t act fast enough

Elizabeth Jenkins, KTOO – Juneau

A federal proposal to make Southeast Alaska’s logging industry sustainable while preserving old growth in the Tongass National Forest does too little, too slowly–according to one conservation group.

Marine Highway releases trimmed down summer schedule

Leila Kheiry, KRBD – Ketchikan

The Alaska Marine Highway System released its summer 2016 ferry schedule Tuesday, and as expected, it includes trimmed-down service.

Sitka to challenge state’s setback for pot businesses

Emily Kwong, KCAW – Sitka

At it’s Tuesday meeting, the Sitka Assembly decided to contest the state’s proposed setback distance for pot business. Sitka joins Petersburg in penning a letter to the State Department of Law, requesting the setback be reduced to 200 feet.

Board of Fish considers commercial Yukon pink salmon fishery

Tim Bodony, KIYU – Galena

A proposal laying the groundwork for a pink salmon commercial fishery near the mouth of the Yukon is on the agenda of this week’s Board of Fisheries meeting in Fairbanks.