Alaska News Nightly: Friday, Feb. 12, 2016

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

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FAA break-up bill clears US House committee

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington D.C.
A bill to privatize the nation’s air traffic controllers cleared the Transportation Committee in the U.S. House last night. Rep. Don Young says he amended it to protect Essential Air Service and Alaska’s air taxis.

Organizations call for ban of heavy fuel oil in Arctic waters

Emily Russell, KNOM – Nome
A group of non-governmental organizations recently sent a letter to the state department calling for a ban on heavy fuel oil, or HFO, in Arctic waters. HFO is tough to cleanup, but the widespread use of HFO throughout the Arctic makes the ban an especially hard sell.

KPC graduate takes first job with BlueCrest

Quinton Chandler, KBBI – Homer
BlueCrest Energy pledged to hire four Kenai Peninsula College graduates to work at their drilling site near Anchor Point. The company made good on its promise. One of BlueCrest’s local hires says the job is the next step in what he hopes will be a promising career.

Anchorage, Willow will host Iditarod starts despite low snow

The Associated Press
Organizers have decided that a lack of snow in the Anchorage area won’t force a route change for this year’s Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

Sass first to leave Dawson in Yukon Quest

Molly Rettig, KUAC – Fairbanks
It was warm and misty on the Yukon River as Brent Sass left Dawson City with fourteen dogs just after midnight. Snowdrifts, ice melt and gold mines are just a few things mushers have to look out for in the second half of the Yukon Quest.The warm weather has caused some of the glaciated hillsides to melt onto the trail.

Humane society addresses uproar over Coco’s last day

Lisa Phu, KTOO – Juneau
A couple gave up their dog to Juneau’s animal shelter on a Saturday morning in December. That same evening, they had a change of heart and wanted the dog back, but it was too late. The dog had already been euthanized. Gastineau Humane Society, which takes in animals from around northern Southeast Alaska, called the dog aggressive and not a viable candidate for adoption. The Juneau couple wishes they’d been notified before the dog was put down.

AK: Leveraging your leopard: the biz behind Alaska’s only zoo

Zachariah Hughes, KSKA – Anchorage
If you’ve ever wanted to feed a snow leopard, a moose, or a pack of wolves, this year you’ve got a chance. Albeit, for a tidy sum.

49 Voices: Laurie Fernandes of Anchorage

Wesley Early, APRN – Anchorage
This week we’re hearing from Laurie Fernandes. Laurie moved to Anchorage with her husband and children last June from Houston, TX.