Alaska News Nightly: July 7, 2014

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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Bears Maul Hiker Near Bird Ridge

Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage

A bear mauling in the Bird Creek area has sent one woman to an Anchorage hospital.  At about 10:20 Monday morning, Alaska State Troopers got a call for help from a hiker on the Penguin Ridge trail.

First Marijuana Shops Open In Washington

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

The first marijuana retail shops are opening up in Washington this week. It’s the last big piece of a citizens’ initiative passed in 2012 that regulates the drug like alcohol. With Alaska voters considering a similar ballot measure this fall, APRN’s Alexandra Gutierrez checks in with Seattle law enforcement to see how they’re dealing with the new policy.

Juneau Police Arrest Suspect in Gold Street Racial Incident; May Also be Suspect in Celebration Case

Rosemarie Alexander, KTOO – Juneau

Juneau police believe they have a suspect in connection with a racial incident that marred the parade at the end of last month’s Celebration.

The Michigan man also is being investigated by the Secret Service and is wanted in Hawaii for threatening people.

Alaska Highway Projects Likely Safe Despite Federal Shortfalls

Ellen Lockyer, KSKA – Anchorage

News that the Federal Highway Trust Fund is running out of money is worrying a lot of states, but not Alaska.   In a letter to transportation departments all over the country earlier this month, the federal Department of Transportation  announced that if Congress did not take immediate action, the trust fund would be depleted in a matter of weeks, forcing federal highway officials to institute cash management procedures in August.  At that time, federal officials will use a formula established by law to determine how much money each state will receive.

Refugees Finding Employment Opportunities In Anchorage

Anne Hillman, KSKA – Anchorage

Businesses in Anchorage have a tough time finding entry level employees. For some employers, the solution is hiring refugees – individuals who fled violence or persecution in their home countries and are trying to enter into life in the United States. Catholic Social Services recently gave an award to P&M Gardens for their willingness to employ refugees.

Nonprofit Touts Alaska Dental Therapists As Oral Health Pioneers

Matthew Smith, KNOM – Nome

Dental health aide therapists have been providing midlevel dental care in the Norton Sound region for about a decade. Now a report from the Pew Charitable Trusts highlights Norton Sound Health Corporation’s dental therapist program as one of the leading efforts in the nation for increasing access to dental care.

The Silver Screen Comes Back To Bethel

Charles Enoch, KYUK – Bethel

The new movie theater in Bethel lit up its screens last week on Independence Day.  It was the grand opening for Suurvik Cinema, the only theatre for hundreds of miles in a vast stretch of Alaska.

Alaska Dispatch News Debuts Tuesday

Monica Gokey, KSKA – Anchorage

The Anchorage Daily News is slated to become the Alaska Dispatch News on Tuesday, according to a story published over the weekend on the organization’s website.

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