Alaska News Nightly: March 16, 2015

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State Asks Court for More Time on Adoption Case

Joaqlin Estus, KNBA-Anchorage
The state today asked the Alaska Supreme Court for more time in a case involving the adoption of a Yup’ik child, a case that tribes say will determine how the Indian Child Welfare Act, or ICWA, will be implemented in Alaska, and show whether Governor Bill Walker is serious about campaign pledges he made to work cooperatively with tribes.

After Breaking Caucus Rule, Reinbold Stripped Of Committee Assignments

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN-Juneau
Last week, Rep. Lora Reinbold voted against the operating budget, breaking one of the House Majority caucus’ rules for membership. Now, the Eagle River Republican has lost her committee chairmanship, and her seat on all but one committee. APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez reports.

Proposed Arctic Drilling Regs Take Holistic Look At Safety

Anne Hillman, KSKA-Anchorage
The heads of the two federal agencies in charge of off shore oil and gas drilling visited Alaska last week to discuss proposed safety regulations for drilling in the Arctic. They spoke with stakeholders in Anchorage and around the North Slope, including hosting a town hall meeting in Barrow.

Lease Sale 193 Decision Expected Late March

Anne Hillman, KSKA-Anchorage
The Secretary of Interior will issue a Record of Decision on Chukchi lease sale 193 by the end of March. The decision will determine if Shell can proceed with its drilling plans for the region this summer.

Seavey, Burmeister First to Koyuk; Zirkle, Royer Behind Leaders

Emily Schwing, APRN Contributor
Dallas Seavey and Aaron Burmeister were the first two into Koyuk this afternoon. Seavy led by only three minutes, though his 50-mile run from Shaktoolik was the fastest by far — only seven and half hours. Aliy Zirkle and Jessie Royer arrived later in the afternoon.

Anchorage Homicides, Shootings A Spike, Not Trend Say Officials

Zachariah Hughes, KSKA-Anchorage

Since the start of the year, Anchorage has seen eight homicides and a spate of shootings. Officials say the incidents in Alaska’s largest city represent a spike, but not an overall rise in violent crime. The remarks, which came during press conference at City Hall, was, just hours after a stabbing victim was pronounced dead following an early morning dispute. The pronouncement is at odds with widespread concerns over public safety.

Walker Names Two Fishermen to Management Council

The Associated Press
Gov. Bill Walker has named two Alaska fishermen as his top picks to serve on the North Pacific Fishery Management Council. The 11-voting member council manages most fisheries in federal waters. The terms of two Alaska members were due to expire this summer.

“Scrubbers” To Cut Cruise Ship Pollution

Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska –Juneau
Cruise lines that sail Alaska waters are installing new pollution-control equipment. It’s aimed at clearing the air – and meeting new regulations. But it’s also dodging some stronger, more expensive measures.

Juneau Library to Launch Alaska Native Stories Project

Lisa Phu, KTOO-Juneau
The Juneau Public Library system embarks on an oral history project this spring collecting Alaska Native stories on educational experiences. The capital city’s library is one of ten picked from more than 300 national applicants to bring StoryCorps to the community.