Alaska News Nightly: December 12, 2014

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U.S. Senate Considers $1.1 Trillion Spending Bill

Liz Ruskin, APRN – Washington DC

It’s been a big week for Alaska in Congress. Lawmakers removed the Alaska exemption in the Violence Against Women Act, a significant gain for advocates of tribal authority.

Sealaska Lands Bill Passes Congress

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau

A bill transferring 70,000 acres of the Tongass National Forest to Sealaska passed Congress.

SAGA to Cease AmeriCorps Program, Hopes Another Org Will Save It

Lisa Phu, KTOO – Juneau

Nineteen AmeriCorps volunteers throughout the state were told this week their positions, including stipends and benefits, could end on Monday.

University of Alaska Regents Approve Tobacco Ban

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

The University of Alaska Board of Regents has approved a policy banning smoking and other tobacco use on its campuses statewide.

Butler to Return as Alaska’s Top Doctor

The Associated Press

Jay Butler is returning to his job as the state’s top doctor. Butler will be both the state’s chief medical officer and director of the Division of Health.

Study: Climate Change Hurting Salmon Habitat

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska – Juneau

Scientists know climate change is altering rain and snowfall patterns in Southeast Alaska’s Tongass National Forest. A new study details how that could affect salmon and suggests what can be done.

10 Years On, Selendang Ayu Spill’s Legacy Still Evolving

Annie Ropeik, KUCB – Unalaska

This week marks 10 years since the Selendang Ayu [SELL-en-dang AYE-you] ran aground off Unalaska Island. The vessel lost power and broke in half against the shore, spilling oil and its soybean cargo, and leaving six crew members dead. It was the biggest shipping disaster in the Aleutians’ recent history – and its impacts are still evolving today.

AK: Maps

Kayla Desroches, KTOO – Juneau

If you want to find a rare book or unusual map in Juneau, there’s only one place to go – Dee Longenbaugh’s shop. Longenbaugh is the owner of The Observatory: a rare book shop, used bookstore, and treasure trove all in one. You can find everything from local cookbooks about how to prepare halibut to maps of the Great White North.

300 Villages: Kluti Kaah

This week we’re heading to the Native Villages of Kluti Kaah in Cooper Center Alaska. Mark Johns lives in Kluti Kaah.