Alaska News Nightly: Tuesday, July 11, 2017

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Feds agree to shore up Alaska’s insurance market

Liz Ruskin, Alaska Public Media – Washington D.C.

The U.S. Health & Human Services Department has agreed to send federal money to the State of Alaska for reinsurance, which lowers costs for people who buy their own health insurance. Some see it as a model to prevent market “death spirals.”

White House’s election fraud commission suspends request for Alaska voter information

Henry Leasia, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

The Trump administration’s Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity has suspended its request for voter information from the Alaska Division of Elections. The commission’s nationwide voter fraud investigation has been put on hold because of a pending lawsuit by the Electronic Privacy Information Center.

Kodiak Pacific Spaceport Complex participates in missile defense test

Kayla Desroches, KMXT – Kodiak

Kodiak Island’s rocket launch facility was one of the players in a missile defense test this week.

EPA takes step toward ending ‘pre-emptive veto’ of Pebble Mine

Liz Ruskin, Alaska Public Media – Washington D.C.

The EPA has announced its intention to reverse course on an action that would have thwarted the proposed Pebble mine in the Bristol Bay watershed.

Former head of Alaska railroad workers union sentenced for felony embezzlement

Zachariah Hughes, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

The former head of Alaska’s railroad workers union has been sentenced to a year in jail for felony embezzlement.

Someone may want to buy the ferry Taku, but they need more time

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau

Someone is interested in buying the retired ferry Taku. As a result, the Alaska Marine Highway System is giving interested parties an extra week and a half to submit bids.

Deep-release puts the pressure on rockfish survival

Robert Woolsey, KCAW – Sitka

For sport anglers in Southeast Alaska having a slow day trying for salmon or halibut this August there will be no “plan B” for bottom-dwelling rockfish.

Sport fishermen frustrated by king salmon management amidst banner sockeye run

Allison Mollenkamp, KDLG – Dillingham

Disparities between the king and sockeye salmon runs are creating challenges for management and frustration for Nushagak sport fishermen.

Wrangell, workers reach new contract agreement

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau

Wrangell has a new agreement with its unionized workers. If approved by the Borough Assembly, it will end three years of sometimes acrimonious talks over wages and benefits.

Some Alaska firefighters head to Lower 48 to assist combating blazes

Anne Hillman, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

Some of Alaska’s firefighters are headed to the Lower 48 to help with blazes ranging from Washington to New Mexico.

Ask a Climatologist: Remembering the record breaking July snow

Annie Feidt, Alaska’s Energy Desk – Anchorage

Back in 1970 on July 19, it snowed 9.7 inches at the Summit weather station just south of Cantwell on the Parks Highway.

Peratrovich dollar coin will either have her likeness or a symbolic Tlingit raven

Tripp Crouse, KTOO – Juneau

The 2020 dollar coin honoring Elizabeth Peratrovich will either have a literal image of the Alaska Native civil rights leader on it, or a Raven holding a key — a symbol of her Tlingit Raven moiety and her role in agitating for an anti-discrimination law.