Alaska News Nightly: Monday, Sept. 26, 2016

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State Superior judge okays Mat-Su marijuana vote

Ellen Lockyer, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

A state Superior court judge is allowing a Matanuska-Susitna Borough marijuana vote to go forward. Earlier Monday Judge David Zwink in Palmer issued an order allowing the October 4 ballot initiative on a Borough ban against commercial marijuana to stay on the ballot.

Obama addresses tribes one more time

Liz Ruskin, Alaska Public Media – Washington D.C.

President Barack Obama addressed his final White House Tribal Nations Conference today. He says progress for first nations will continue, regardless of who wins the White House next.

Doyon’s $2b discount: Fair play or ‘rip off’?

Liz Ruskin, Alaska Public Media – Washington D.C.

Doyon was in federal court in Washington D.C. today, trying to keep a $2 billion discount it says it should have been granted two years ago, when it bid billions of dollars on wireless spectrum. The FCC claims the company Doyon partially owns, Northstar, doesn’t deserve the discount because of its substantial ties to Dish Network.

Lance Mackey withdraws from 2017 Iditarod

Zachariah Hughes, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

The Iditarod Trail Committee announced today that former champion Lance Mackey has withdrawn from the race, citing health reasons.

Nanwalek school converts garage into classroom

Daysha Eaton, KBBI – Homer

Nanwalek School is getting some relief from overcrowding after a garage/shop area was converted into a new classroom over the summer.

Why Alaska utilities can build now, ask for rate increases later

Elizabeth Jenkins, Alaska’s Energy Desk – Juneau

Alaska’s privately owned electric utilities can’t increase their rates overnight. They first have to go through a process with the state’s regulatory commission to demonstrate a need. That’s what Juneau’s utility — AEL&P — is at the beginning stages of doing. But customers get little say about projects already on the books.

State cuts will stifle Southeast’s economic growth

Angela Denning, KFSK – Petersburg

Southeast Alaska has seen economic growth in the last five years but that growth could soon be stalled by state budget cuts. That was the message being shared at the Southeast Conference going on in Petersburg this week.

Body of missing hiker found in Sitka

Emily Kwong, KCAW – Sitka

The body of a missing hiker was found by searchers in Sitka on Friday afternoon.

Guide in mauling near Angoon was storied Fish & Game researcher LaVern Beier

Jeremy Hsieh, KTOO – Juneau

Alaska State Troopers have identified the hunting guide involved in Thursday’s Admiralty Island bear mauling as 63-year-old LaVern Beier of Juneau.

‘I’m a girl’: Knowing who you are at 4-years-old

Anne Hillman, Alaska Public Media – Anchorage

The American Academy of Pediatrics says most kids have a stable sense of gender identity by the time they are four. Rusty is one of them. Rusty may have been born a boy, but she knows she is definitely a girl.