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From Our Listeners

Alaska and Yukon Headlines

‘It’s been a really positive outcome’: condo owner

Wed, 2014-01-15 13:47
A legal battle between Copper Ridge condominium owners and their developer entered its end game this week with a Yukon Supreme Court decision

Council adopts blueprint for Hillcrest’s future

Wed, 2014-01-15 13:45
With a new neighbourhood plan in hand, Hillcrest residents are now anxious to get on with seeing the changes outlined become a reality.

Accused plans First Nations status as defence

Wed, 2014-01-15 13:43
A man who has publicly admitted to shooting two wolves in his Mount Sima neighbourhood last year hopes to have all 10 charges against him dismissed based on his First Nations status.

Nishikawa’s road to Sochi began with gymnastics

Wed, 2014-01-15 13:20
Before Emily Nishikawa was a competitive cross-country skier, she was a Polarette.

Chemical safety legislation before U.S. Senate is right for Alaska

Wed, 2014-01-15 13:18
Chemical safety legislation before U.S. Senate is right for Alaska OPINION: With bipartisan support -- including from Sens. Begich and Murkowski -- the proposed Chemical Safety Improvement Act is both a historic and a necessary piece of legislation.January 15, 2014

New Ross River rec centre unveiled

Wed, 2014-01-15 13:17
The newly-constructed Ross River recreation centre is now open to the public.

EPA report predicts Pebble Mine could devastate Alaska salmon runs

Wed, 2014-01-15 12:59
EPA report predicts Pebble Mine could devastate Alaska salmon runs On Wednesday, the Environmental Protection Agency issued its final report on the potential impacts of the proposed Pebble Mine on Alaska's Bristol Bay region, with mine opponents lauding the results and supporters decrying them.January 15, 2014

Makeshift courtrooms in Nunavut need heat and toilets, says judge

Wed, 2014-01-15 12:08
Makeshift courtrooms in Nunavut need heat and toilets, says judge School gyms, community halls and other buildings used for judicial proceedings fail to meet standards for safety, comfort and technology.January 15, 2014

Diamond facilities in Canada’s NWT still empty after sale

Wed, 2014-01-15 12:07
Diamond facilities in Canada’s NWT still empty after sale Deepak International's plans to restart operations at idled diamond-polishing plants in Yellowknife have taken longer than expected. January 15, 2014

'Irregularities' at state crime lab could complicate drug cases

Wed, 2014-01-15 11:43
'Irregularities' at state crime lab could complicate drug cases In the wake of news that the state’s Scientific Crime Detection Laboratory had discovered issues related to the testing of illegal drugs, suspects and attorneys are unsure how pending drug cases will be affected.January 15, 2014

Video: Anchorage Home Depot employee catches falling baby

Wed, 2014-01-15 10:39
Video: Anchorage Home Depot employee catches falling baby

An employee at the Abbott Road Home Depot in Anchorage appeared to save a baby as it tumbled from its car seat atop the handles of a shopping cart last week in a video uploaded to YouTube Sunday.

January 15, 2014

AK Beat: New AT&T app limits smartphone distraction for drivers

Wed, 2014-01-15 08:43
AK Beat: New AT&T app limits smartphone distraction for drivers Do you find it impossible to put down your phone and watch the road when you're driving? There's an app for that.January 15, 2014

Anchorage Assembly Passes Spice Ticketing Law

Wed, 2014-01-15 07:44

Prosecutor Cynthia Franklin holds an empty container labeled potpourri which once held the drug Spice. The new law allows police officers to issue $500 tickets based on the packaging, price point and claims of the drug rather than it’s chemical composition.

Anchorage has a new law that fines people in possession of the designer drug spice. It’s the city’s second try at cracking down on the drug…after failed attempts with a narrow law that focused on contents that manufacturers change quickly. The Anchorage Assembly acted quickly after hearing public testimony on the damage that spice has been doing.

It’s just like a traffic ticket, but for drugs. Anchorage police officers can now write anyone a ticket per vial, tube or pack in possession of a spice or bath salt product. Municipal Prosecutor Cynthia Franklin says the new law identifies the substances without actually naming their chemical compounds or makeup.

“They identify it by it’s packaging, by it’s price point, by it’s claims. By the fact that it says on its package that it’s not a controlled substance even though it says it’s potpourri. That makes no sense. Potpourri is not a controlled substance so why would it say on it’s package that it’s not a controlled substance. What this ordinance says is that if it says it’s not a controlled substance then it’s an illicit synthetic drug and it’s illegal.”

Prosecutor Cynthia Franklin holds a packet of Spice labeled Brainfreeze. The new law passed by the Anchorage Assembly Tuesday allows police to issue tickets based on the name and claims on the packaging and on it’s cost.

Franklin, who helped pass the first spice ordinance in 2010, says manufacturers of drug change its composition quickly. The new law is based on one that was passed in Maine and will make laboratory tests less necessary. Anchorage Police Chief Mark Mew says the new law gives police a way to immediately to get the drug off the streets, through ticketing.

“You pay a fine. That fine, if you don’t pay it will go to your permanent fund. It’s quick. Because it’s quick, because it’s not criminal you don’t get a free attorney from the government, you don’t get a right to jury trial. It’s a low level crime, it’s handled low, it’s handled in an inexpensive way for the public. And while it’s not the total solution, it is a simple solution that we can put to use right a way while the more complex law starts developing.”

The tickets are $500 per item. Officers could begin issuing them as early as this week.
outcue

Anchorage Assembly passes Spice ban, puts port management, election questions on hold

Tue, 2014-01-14 23:21
Anchorage Assembly passes Spice ban, puts port management, election questions on hold Anchorage lawmakers agreed to try a new tack in the municipality's fight against synthetic marijuana, a fix that has already shown promise in Bangor, Maine. Other matters before the members will wait until February.January 14, 2014

Parnell administration signals willingness to back off on measure aiming to speed development

Tue, 2014-01-14 21:06
Parnell administration signals willingness to back off on measure aiming to speed development The deputy commissioner of the state Department of Natural Resources said his staff are reexamining provisions of HB 77 that are generating protests in Alaska. January 14, 2014

Arctic ice growing slower than average so far this winter

Tue, 2014-01-14 21:06
Arctic ice growing slower than average so far this winter The National Snow and Ice Data Center says Arctic ice coverage in December was the fourth lowest since satellite records began. There are unanswered questions about potential impacts on unusual winter weather.January 14, 2014

If smartphones are so smart, why don't they tell drivers to watch the road?

Tue, 2014-01-14 20:58
If smartphones are so smart, why don't they tell drivers to watch the road? OPINION: Some hospitals are now treating smartphone usage as a potentially dangerous addictive behavior and have started screening staff. People who disagree with that are clearly not paying attention, and maybe not even when they're driving.January 14, 2014

State picks contractor for North Slope LNG to slash Fairbanks energy costs

Tue, 2014-01-14 20:54
State picks contractor for North Slope LNG to slash Fairbanks energy costs The state picked a multinational company on Tuesday to lead plans for a project to bring gas to Fairbanks via trucks from the North Slope. The Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority will try to seal the deal with a contract.January 14, 2014

State, feds fight lawsuit seeking federal oversight of Cook Inlet fisheries

Tue, 2014-01-14 20:48
State, feds fight lawsuit seeking federal oversight of Cook Inlet fisheries A lawsuit underway in Alaska U.S. District Court seeks federal oversight of Cook Inlet commercial salmon fisheries, but may be even wider reaching. On Monday, a public hearing was held to discuss the lawsuit, with state officials testifying against the litigation.January 14, 2014

Former DNR Commissioner Dan Sullivan Raises $1.2 Million For Senate Race

Tue, 2014-01-14 18:24

The U.S. Senate campaign of Dan Sullivan announced today how much money he collected in his first three months of fund-raising – $1.2 million.

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It’s a fast start for the former Natural Resources Commissioner, who is in a three-way race for the Republican primary.

None of the other candidates has released a fourth quarter total yet, but judging by previous reports, Sullivan is likely to have raised a lot more than his Republican rivals, Mead Treadwell and Joe Miller. Even incumbent Sen. Mark Begich hasn’t raised $1.2 million in a single quarter so far, although he raised more than twice that in the first nine months of last year. Sullivan campaign spokesman Mike Anderson says it’ll take serious money to go against Begich.

“We are honored and thankful for the support that we’ve received from Alaskans and people across the country,” Anderson said.

The campaign isn’t saying how much of that money is from Alaskans. Sullivan has held multiple Lower 48 fundraisers. His spokesman says the details will be in the report they file with the Federal Election Commission, and that isn’t due until the end of the month.

Anchorage Political consultant Art Hackney, who is raising money for a pro-Sullivan PAC, says posting an impressive number puts Sullivan on the map.

“I think the biggest thing people have been saying is they’re not quite sure who he is,” Hackney said. “This will get him exactly what he needs, is people saying now I’m going to pay attention, I’d like to know more about him.”

A survey by Ivan Moore published last month shows Treadwell leading with 34 percent of the vote in a three-way Republican primary, but Sullivan was close behind, nearly within the margin of error. The survey showed Joe Miller winning in much of the Railbelt, including Fairbanks, Mat-Su and the Kenai Peninsula, and Treadwell ahead in Anchorage and Southeast.

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