Anne Hillman, KSKA - Anchorage
ahillman (at) alaskapublic (dot) org | About Anne
The Anchorage Police Department says they are ready if civil unrest breaks out in Alaska’s largest city, like it did in Ferguson, Missouri earlier this month. But their main tactic is being as transparent and open as possible so that riots don’t happen in the first place.
The ENSTAR strike has lasted two weeks, and there’s no end in sight. Local workers are picketing in front of ENSTAR offices around Anchorage and in Homer. They’re having a dispute with the management over retirement benefits for both present and future workers.
The Anchorage Youth Court is getting old. It’s celebrating it’s 25th birthday this week. The organization has shrunk over the years. The court now hears about a third of the cases it did a decade ago. But it’s goal is the same — to give young people a second chance.
Two very different men are running in the Republican primary for House District 16 in East Anchorage, but they have similar agendas. They both want to reduce the budget and fix the education system.
Two political newcomers – and friends – are vying for the Republican nomination for House District 21 this month – Anand Dubey and Matt Fagnani. They met in 2012 when Dubey lost to Lindsay Holmes in the old District 19. Fagnani says he decided to run against his friend because he’s more in tune with Alaska, but Dubey says he offers innovations the legislature needs.
Her Yang Thao was charged Friday with criminally negligent homicide for hitting and killing a four-year-old girl who was riding her bicycle in Anchorage in May.
Local Alaskan organizations are trying to promote entrepreneurship to diversify the economy. Last week, the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation hosted the second annual Pitch-on-a-Train competition. Five Alaskan start-ups tried to convince a panel of judges that their ideas, which ranged from water treatment to cyber currency credit cards, could make money.
A former Anchorage lifeguard has been arrested for possessing and distributing child pornography. Twenty-two-year-old Jonathan Daniel Sabet worked at the East High School Pool.
The 17-year-old who hit and killed bicyclist Jeffery Dusenbury in July is being charged with manslaughter, a class A felony. Alexandra Anne Ellis is being tried as an adult. She’s also charged with driving under the influence and leaving the scene without rendering assistance to Dusenbury.
The Anchorage Assembly voted 7 to 4 to repeal AO-37 on Tuesday night and replace it with a compromise ordinance negotiated by Assembly Members and union representatives. However, the mayor still has seven days to veto the new ordinance and the repeal.
The Anchorage Assembly and municipal unions might be close to a compromise on the city’s labor laws. The groups met for their final work session on Friday to discuss Assembly member Jennifer Johnston’s proposed labor ordinance. But the unions say there are still three major sticking points.
Consumers in Anchorage are feeling positive. The city’s Consumer Optimism Index has reached a four-year high — 63 out of 100. The score is based on random phone surveys of at least 350 households. But the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation says that doesn’t mean everything is looking up. The three-year outlook for Anchorage shows only slow to moderate economic growth.
Assembly members and union representatives met on Monday to discuss the latest revisions of a proposed new version of Anchorage’s controversial labor law, AO-37. The Assembly has to make a decision by next week, or it will be up for a public vote in November.
The superintendent of the Anchorage School District presented his State of the Schools speech to a group of principals and community members Friday morning. New data shows that the schools are improving but still have a ways to go. New programs can help.
Community members packed the hearing room of the Regulatory Commission of Alaska Wednesday morning in Anchorage. They pushed for consistent gas pricing from Enstar in response to a recent big jump in rates.
Anchorage’s Fairview neighborhood now has a new tool to encourage development – a tax abatement incentive. The Assembly voted unanimously to approve the measure on Tuesday night.
Three bicyclists have been killed by vehicles in Anchorage this year. The most recent was Fifty-one-year-old Jeff Dusenbury, who was hit by a pickup truck in South Anchorage Saturday. Fellow cyclists are mourning his death and waiting for the outcome of the District Attorney’s investigation.
Twenty-six high school students from the North Slope recently completed the third year of UAF’s GeoForce program. The four-year summer program gets students into the field to learn about geology hands-on. They’ve seen glaciers in Alaska, visited the Grand Canyon, and explored volcanoes in the northwest.
Few details are available about Sunday’s 3 am drive-by shooting in Anchorage near 47th Avenue and Arctic Blvd. An Anchorage party bus with 17 people inside was shot 10 times by at least four different guns. Bullets entered through the back window and the body of the 28-passenger vehicle. No one was injured.