Alaska News Nightly: April 19, 2013

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Begich’s Gun Law Vote Draws Group’s Criticism

Peter Granitz, APRN – Washington DC

A liberal group is running ads against Senator Mark Begich for his votes against expanded background checks for gun sales.

Adam Green is the co-founder of the Progressive Change Campaign Committee. Green says his group, and its 2,800 members in Alaska, normally support Senator Begich and his work on entitlements like Social Security.

But his gun votes this week drew the ire of liberals

Green’s Political Action Committee raises money for candidates and mobilizes the liberal base. He says that running ads shaming Begich will not make him more vulnerable in his reelection bid.

Joe Miller May Pursue Senate Seat In 2014

Peter Granitz, APRN – Washington DC

Begich may face Joe Miller in the 2014 Senate race. And if Miller does decide to run, voters can expect the same brand of fiery rhetoric he used to try to unseat Senator Murkowski in 2010.

Bethel Farm Grows Crops Despite Cold

Mark Arehart, KYUK – Bethel

With many early mornings in the below zero temperatures this spring, you would think it would be impossible to grow crops at this time in Western Alaska, but at Meyers Farm in Bethel they are doing just that.  In fact they have 10 rows of spinach that have just started to sprout.

Silver Bay Seafoods To Enter Bristol Bay In 2014

Mike Mason, KDLG – Dillingham

A large seafood processing plant will be constructed this summer in Naknek and it’s expected to be processing herring and salmon by next year.

King Salmon Fishing Restricted On Many Cook Inlet-Area Rivers

Steve Heimel, APRN – Anchorage

The state Fish and Game department slapped restrictions on sports-fishing for King Salmon on many rivers that pour into Cook Inlet on Thursday. Their press releases say the fisheries will be, “conservatively managed” this year.

Affected are all the rivers in the Susitna River basin and some on the Kenai Peninsula.  In the Mat-Su valley, there will be a total two-fish limit for the Susitna and Little Su drainage.  A number of days will be catch and release only, though some retention will still be allowed on the Deshka, Talkeetna, Upper Susitna and Chulitna.

Also affected by the order as of May first are Kenai Peninsula rivers, though not the Kenai itself, including the Anchor, Ninilchik, Kasilof and Deep Creek. They are aimed at the early Chinook run. The Upper Inlet restrictions start on May 15 and are aimed at spreading effort over the entire season to avoid mid-season closures such as were imposed last year, says the Fish and Game department.

Draft Southeast Sea Otter Population Assessment Out

Matt Lichtenstein, KFSK – Petersburg

The Southeast Alaska sea otter population has more than doubled over the past decade. That’s according to an estimate from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, which released a draft of its revised stock assessment this week. The numbers have been out for a while but the public now has a formal chance to comment on them.

NOVA Producer Brings ‘Art of Science Television to Fairbanks

Emily Schwing, KUAC – Fairbanks

The Senior Executive Producer of a long-running and popular science documentary series on public television was in Fairbanks this week. Paula Apsell gave a two-hour presentation on Wednesday night called “The Art of Science Television.”

AK: Talent Scouting

Annie Feidt, APRN – Anchorage

Dozens of kids in Anchorage got the chance to fly off the ski jumps at Hilltop ski area this winter. The ski jumping program has expanded rapidly in the last three years. And the U.S. Ski team is now eyeing Anchorage as a spot to develop young athletes for their successful Nordic combined program, a sport that mixes ski jumping and cross country skiing. A U.S. ski team coach was in the city last week to offer his guidance and encourage young kids to give the sport a try.

300 Villages: Diomede

This week, we’re heading to the community of Diomede, in the middle of the Bering Strait between Alaska and Russia. Michele Kulukhon is from Diomede.

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