Alaska News Nightly: March 21, 2013

Individual news stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via emailpodcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter @aprn.

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Senate Passes Oil Tax Bill In Tight Vote
Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

A bill reworking the state’s oil tax structure has cleared a major hurdle, passing the Senate late Wednesday night on an 11-9 vote. The package would effectively lower taxes on producers with the hope of getting more oil in the pipeline. But without firm commitments to ramp up production, opinion on the legislation was split almost down the middle.

Sally Jewell Breezes Past Energy Committee

Peter Granitz, APRN – Washington DC

President Barack Obama’s nominee to lead the Interior Department, REI chief executive Sally Jewell, sailed through her committee vote this morning.

Landslide Transforms Mountain Near Matanuska Glacier

Annie Feidt, APRN – Anchorage

A large landslide has transformed a mountainside near the Matanuska Glacier. Locals noticed the landslide in mid-February. It left a black streak of rock and debris on the unnamed mountain at least a mile long. One expert says it’s impossible to pinpoint what caused this particular landslide, but they are becoming more common in northern climates.

New UAA Sports Complex Named ‘Alaska Airlines Center’

Josh Edge, APRN – Anchorage

The new sports complex currently under construction at the University of Alaska Anchorage now has a name – the Alaska Airlines Center. UAA and Alaska Airlines announced the $6.3 million dollar partnership on Thursday.

Fisheries Board Raises Late-Run Chinook Escapement Goal

Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage

Southcentral Alaska sport fishermen are applauding a move by the state’s Board of Fisheries aimed at ensuring escapement goals for Kenai River late – run Chinook salmon.  The Board voted unanimously to approve substitute language for a proposal that would have triggered emergency management measures based on the run’s failure to achieve a specific escapement goal of 15,000 fish.

Race Marshall Calls Dog Death One Of The Worst Tragedies In Iditarod History

Emily Schwing, KUAC – Fairbanks

The Iditarod Race Marshall is calling the death of a dropped dog in Unalakleet this year one of the worst tragedies in the race’s history.  The Iditarod Trail committee has since launched an investigation into what happened.  They’re working with the dog’s owner to develop better dog care standards for the future.

Musher Chooses Unique Route To Kobuk 440

Lori Townsend, APRN – Anchorage

The Iditarod is over, but there’s still racing left to be done this season. The Kobuk 440 out of Kotzebue is scheduled to start April 11. One musher is taking the long route to reach the race. Chuck Schaeffer, formerly of Kotzebue and now living in Willow, is driving his dogs from Nenana to Kotzebue for the race, alone. Schaeffer did the trip last year as a way to save the expense of flying his dogs north for the race. But this year, he’s taking time to stop and talk with young people in villages along the trail about personal responsibility and self pride.

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