Alaska News Nightly: June 17, 2014

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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Alaska Communities To Be Compensated $28.5M for Tax-Exempt Lands

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington, D.C.

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell announced today the government is sending $28.5 million to local governments in Alaska to compensate them for the tax-exempt federal land within their boundaries.

Obama to Expand Pacific Marine Sanctuary

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington, D.C.

President Obama announced he intends to vastly expand the Pacific Remote Islands marine sanctuary, putting a swath of the south-central Pacific off-limits to fishing and energy development.  The announcement is part of a high-profile oceans conference taking place this week at the State Department.

Kodiak Fishermen Find a Niche Consumer Market

Steve Heimel, APRN – Anchorage

Small boat fishermen out of Kodiak have found a premium market for their catch, based on the idea of buying local. The jig fishery uses gear as light as ten pounds, and is open to anyone who buys a permit. A number of restaurants are willing to pay more for fish caught that way.

Steel Creek Fire Near Fairbanks Draws Air Response

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

A new Fairbanks area wildfire drew a major response last night. A forestry official reports that ground and air resources were tapped to attack the Steel Creek Fire, near mile four of Chena Hot Springs Road.

Ferry Workers Reach Tentative Labor Agreement

Casey Kelly, KTOO – Juneau

The largest labor union representing Alaska Marine Highway System workers has a tentative agreement for a new three-year contract with the state. The Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific and the Alaska Department of Administration reached the agreement last week after more than six months at the bargaining table.

GCI Doles Out Cheeseburgers To Celebrate Launch of 3G Service

Ben Matheson, KYUK –Bethel

GCI celebrated the launch of 3G data service in Bethel by flying in 6,000 McDonald’s cheeseburgers Friday. Residents in the community have been frustrated by slow connections speeds through GCI.

Right-Wing Lt. Gov. Candidate Vies for Ballot Slot

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

A Fairbanks woman is part of a team trying to get a new party on the Alaska ballot. Maria Rensel is running as an Alaska Constitution Party candidate for lieutenant governor.

Plans for a Skatepark Get Rolling in Kwethluk

Charles Enoch, KYUK – Bethel

Village youth in the Kuskokwim village of Kwethluk will soon have a chance to do something few of them have done before: skateboard.  Construction of a new skatepark there will begin next month.  The park is the first of it’s kind in the YK Delta.

Loo Dedication Draws Small Crowd in Ketchikan

Maria Dudzak, KRBD – Ketchikan

A ribbon cutting ceremony for a new public facility was held last week in downtown Ketchikan.  The christening of the Stedman-Thomas Neighborhood Loo attracted about 40 people on a sunny and windy morning.


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