Alaska News Nightly: Tuesday, Mar. 8, 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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Ivy Spohnholz named to fill vacant Gruenberg seat

Andrew Kitchenman, KTOO – Juneau

Governor Bill Walker named Ivy Spohnholz Tuesday as his choice to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Representative Max Gruenberg in February.

USFW chief says no to delay of Tongass timber transition

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington D.C.

This morning in Washington, Forest Service chief Tom Tidwell said the same thing several different ways. He repeatedly insisted the plan to move to young-growth trees in the Tongass can sustain Southeast Alaska’s timber industry. Sen. Lisa Murkowski is unconvinced.

Foster care and services for Native children now handled by largest tribal government

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau

The largest tribal government in Southeast Alaska now has authority over foster care and other services for Native children facing abuse or neglect. An agreement signed Wednesday this week transfers state management, as well as funding, to the Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska.

Brent Sass, Noah Burmeister, and Dallas Seavey race on to McGrath

Ben Matheson, APRN Contributor – Anchorage

Dallas Seavey has surged to the front of the Iditarod pack between Nikolai and McGrath. The defending race champion dropped one dog and rested four hours in Nikolai, about 250 miles into the race. His father Mitch Seavey and Wade Marrs are following closely behind as of 4:00 p.m. this afternoon, according to the Iditarod Insider GPS tracker. Pete Kaiser and Aily Zirkle round out the front pack.

Dallas Seavey: Iditarod reaches a turning point in Nikolai 

Emily Schwing, KNOM – Nome

Nikolai was bustling all day as dog teams pulled in and out of the sixth checkpoint. It’s a turning point in the race.  Teams have passed over some of the roughest trail. From here, mushers will evaluate their dogs as they try to decide how best to execute their race plans.

Aging Southeast: Assisted living comes up short

Lisa Phu, KTOO – Juneau

Due to a shortage of assisted living homes, some of Southeast Alaska’s aging residents can’t stay in their home communities. Facilities in Juneau, Ketchikan, Sitka and Petersburg provide assistance to seniors needing help with daily activities, such as cooking, dressing and medication management. As part of the CoastAlaska series Aging Southeast, KTOO’s Lisa Phu reports on how the region isn’t keeping up with the demand for assisted living, and that demand is only expected to grow.

Alaska musicians get creative for Tiny Desk Contest

Kiera Alkema, KTOO – Juneau

Last week, NPR Music announced the winner of its second-ever Tiny Desk contest, Duluth, Minnesota’s Gaelynn Lea. More than 6,000 hopeful bands and solo musicians submitted videos of their original music for a chance to play NPR Music’s coveted Tiny Desk at headquarters in Washington, DC. Though there can only be one winner, here are some of the stand out Alaskan performers who competed for the title.