Alaska News Nightly: March 11, 2013

Individual news 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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Mitch Seavey Takes Back Iditarod Lead

Emily Schwing, KUAC – Fairbanks

Mitch Seavey is back in the Iditarod lead. He passed Jeff King halfway through the run from Koyuk to Elim along the Bering Sea Coast. King surprised everyone by speeding through the Koyuk checkpoint at 8:20 this morning, stopping less than six minutes. That put him out front for most of the day. Mitch Seavey left the checkpoint three hours after King. Aliy Zirkle, Ray Redding Jr and Aaron Burmeister followed a few hours later. APRN trail reporter Emily Schwing is in Koyuk. She says King’s dogs looked good when they passed through the checkpoint.

Lawmakers Push For More Local Food Production

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

Less than 5 percent of food consumed in Alaska is harvested in the state. Now, a group of lawmakers want to find ways to increase that amount.

Bill Increases Time Required For Teacher Tenure

The Associated Press

Public school teachers might have to wait a couple years longer to acquire tenure rights if a bill proposed in the Alaska House is passed.

Students ‘Dream Big’ At Airport Heights Elementary

Daysha Eaton, KSKA – Anchorage

For years, Airport Heights Elementary School has had a hard time attracting students from families right in the neighborhood. The school has struggled with low achievement scores and that has convinced dozens of neighborhood parents to drive their kids to higher performing schools in the district. But this year, teachers and administrators at Airport Heights have started an initiative they hope will lure those families back.

City Officials Express Relief Following Dietzmann Verdict

Aaron Selbig, KBBI – Homer

Homer city officials are expressing relief over a jury’s verdict Thursday exonerating the actions of Homer Police Department officers during a 2006 shootout at the Homer Airport. As KBBI’s Aaron Selbig reports, attorneys for the plaintiff have promised to appeal the case.

State Proposes Land Sale In Central Area

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The state is proposing a land sale in the Central area.  The Department of Natural Resources is taking public comment on the 600 acre subdivision about a mile and half northeast of Central. D.N.R. Northern region land sales manager Timothy Shilling says the land was identified for sale under a management plan that classified it for private recreation.

Alaska Cultural Connections: Idita-Culture

Jessica Cochran, APRN Contributor

Nine days ago, just after leaving downtown Anchorage, they turned onto the Chester Creek trail…and passed by one “trail party” after another.  Along this stretch, as along much of the trail to Nome, the Iditarod means community.  As Jessica Cochran tells us, the race is part of our culture — one of the ways we identify ourselves as Alaskans.