Alaska News Nightly: September 15, 2014

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BP Alaska Plans Layoffs Following Hilcorp Sale

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Anchorage

BP Alaska, a major player in the state’s oil industry, is planning to lay off 275 employees and contractors early next year.

State Files To Participate In Big Thorne Lawsuits

Leila Kheiry, KRBD – Ketchikan

The State of Alaska filed motions in federal court Monday to participate in lawsuits that seek to halt or delay the U.S. Forest Service’s planned Big Thorne timber sale on Prince of Wales Island.

The Tongass Tightrope: Balancing Diverse Interests By Committee

Jeremy Hsieh, KTOO – Juneau

A three-day meeting in Juneau between stakeholders in the Tongass National Forest wrapped Friday. It’s the second in a series that the Tongass Advisory Committee has leading up to its May deadline to produce its recommendations.

Representatives of the U.S. Forest Service, the timber industry, state government, local communities, tribal entities and conservationists on the committee are trying to work out policies that will let them all sustainably coexist.

Anchorage Port Project Is Downsized To Deal With Corrosion, Not Expansion

Anne Hillman, KSKA – Anchorage

The Anchorage Port project is taking a new direction toward modernization and rehabilitation instead of expansion.

Officers Say Searches, Civil Rights Must Balance In Fight Against Illegal Drugs

Joaqlin Estus, KNBA – Anchorage

Alaska has ranked among the top 10 states in several categories of illegal drug use in recent years. Last week, participants at the “Reclaim Alaska: 2014 Substance Abuse Summit” hosted by the Aleutian-Pribilof Islands Association talked about the problem and ways to address it. Participants were also cautioned that civil rights must not be trampled in the process of stemming the flow of illegal drugs.

Motorcyclists Celebrate Life On The Road

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The summer tourism season is winding down, with even the hardiest travelers thinking about heading south. Alaska regularly attracts adventurous people from around the world, including motorcycle tourists.

Alaska SeaLife Center Names Sea Lion Pup

Shady Grove Oliver, KBBI – Homer

A very special Stellar sea lion pup got a name last week at the Alaska SeaLife Center in Seward. He’s the result of a special breeding and research program looking into the decline of the endangered marine mammals in the state.

Red Fox Expansion Causing Problems On North Slope

Emily Schwing, KUAC – Fairbanks

As the winter approaches, many animals are migrating south, but there’s one sly creature that scientists say in recent years has started to remain in the high Arctic in the winter. Red foxes have not only expanded their habitat into the far north, the charismatic, bushy tailed mammal is out-competing the native Arctic fox and causing problems at oil field dumpsters in Prudhoe Bay.