Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska - Juneau

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Ed Schoenfeld is at CoastAlaska in Juneau

A bill creating corporations for Native residents of five “landless” Southeast Alaska communities had its first hearing in Congress today. Haines, Petersburg, Wrangell, Ketchikan and Tenakee were left out of 1971’s Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act. That bill gave land, money and corporate status to those in many other Alaska communities.
Rear Adm. Thomas Ostebo addresses the Juneau Chamber of Commerce in 2011. He’ll soon head up the cruise industry’s trade group. (KTOO file photo)

Alaska’s former top U.S. Coast Guard official will soon head up the world’s largest cruise-industry trade group. Rear Adm. Thomas Ostebo takes over July 6 as CEO of the Cruise Lines International Association.

The Alaska Public Offices Commission says Dan Ortiz failed to properly report some campaign contributions and spending. It also says he accepted an illegal donation and did not state who paid for several campaign fliers. Download Audio:

When an eagle dies in Alaska, its feathers may end up in a powwow — or on a graduation cap — somewhere in the Lower 48. That’s because of a federal program connecting tribes, raptor centers and wildlife officials. Download Audio:

All state ferries will stop sailing by early July if the Legislature fails to reach a budget deal. The Alaska Marine Highway System’s plans are among dozens of state service cuts announced Monday by the Walker administration. Download Audio:

Five independent candidates are challenging five incumbents for seats on Sealaska’s board of directors. The election is quieter than last year’s, but not without controversy.

Alaska communities could better adjust to climate change if hunting and fishing rules become more flexible.

Could Sealaska make more money, pay higher dividends and make better use of its land? Yes, say some shareholders critical of the Southeast regional Native corporation’s management.

The Native American Fish and Wildlife Society meets in Juneau this week. Tribal and other government officials and staff will discuss climate change, subsistence, Arctic policy and dozens of other issues. Download Audio:

Craig Renkert and his wife Barb planned a three-week tour of Southeast Alaska for this summer. They were looking forward to ferrying through the Inside Passage, celebrating the Fourth of July in Sitka and staying at bed-and-breakfasts along the way. Then, the couple from Ohio got some bad news.

The Walker-Mallott administration will include transboundary mine critics’ concerns in its negotiations with British Columbia. Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott made that announcement after returning from a week of meetings with government, industry and aboriginal leaders in the nearby province.

The regional Native corporation for Southeast Alaska upped its income by $50 million in 2014. Officials at Juneau-headquarteredSealaska say it’s the start of a multi-year recovery. But critics point to figures showing it’s still losing money. Download Audio:

British Columbia Minister of Energy and Mines Bill Bennett proposes opening more of its permitting process to Alaska officials.

Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott says British Columbia officials seem “sincere” about protecting transboundary rivers near provincial mines.

Alaska’s largest tribal government has joined an international effort to boost Native influence in the United Nations. The Juneau-based Central Council of Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska wants a larger forum to address its concerns.

Sitka and Juneau will lose a week of fast ferry sailings this month. The Chenega will return to Southeast service May 14th, a week later than scheduled. Download Audio:

Alaska’s public broadcasters dodged a bullet when the legislature’s regular session ended Monday. House and Senate negotiators decided on a 23.5 percent budget reduction. A proposed cut more than twice that size could have forced at least five stations off the air. It also would have dramatically reduced programming at other outlets.

Gov. Bill Walker says the state ferry system needs more money to avoid “crippling cuts” during the next fiscal year.

More than 9,000 people are booked for Alaska Marine Highway sailings that will likely be cut due to budget reductions. Download Audio

Canadian officials say the small Southeast Alaska town of Hyder will continue to have 24-hour-a-day access to emergency health care.