Alaska News Nightly: July 25, 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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Earthquake Rattles Southeast Alaska, Likely Damaging Communications Network

Margaret Friedenauer, KHNS – Haines

Mother Nature rattled Northern Southeast this morning with and magnitude 5.9 earthquake and several dozen aftershocks. The quake appears to have damaged Internet and cell service to thousands of Southeast residents.

State Supreme Court Rules Same-Sex Partners Can Access Death Benefits

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Juneau

The Alaska Supreme Court has ruled that same-sex partners are eligible for death benefits, even though they are prohibited from marrying by the state Constitution.

Complaint Filed Against Anti-Marijuana Campaign

Alexandra Gutierrez, APRN – Anchorage

Sponsors of a marijuana regulation initiative have filed a complaint against their opposition, alleging that Big Marijuana Big Mistake has violated disclosure rules.

Comments Sought on Possible Beaufort Lease Sale

The Associated Press

A federal agency is testing the waters on a possible new lease sale in the Alaska Arctic.

Report Finds Beaufort Sea Oil Spill Response Inadequate

Zachariah Hughes, KNOM – Nome

A report released today by the World Wildlife Fund in Canada finds the capacity for oil spill response in the Beaufort Sea is woefully inadequate, even as Canadian regulators consider relaxing safety standards for offshore exploration.

Officials Consider Proposed Federal Takeover of Kuskokwim Salmon Fishery

Ben Matheson, KYUK – Bethel

After a summer of long Chinook salmon closures and a weak chum run on the Kuskokwim river, middle and upper river subsistence fishermen eagerly await word about whether the federal government will take control of the fishery.

Usibelli Submits Coal Bed Methane Plan

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

Usibelli Coal has submitted a plan to drill coal bed methane exploration wells on state land near Healy. The company is licensed to look for shallow gas on over 200 thousand acres of state and private land in the area, and this is the first action the company has taken.

AK: Welding

Emily Files, KRBD – Ketchikan

There are more than 100 people employed at Ketchikan’s Vigor Industrial Shipyard. Out of all of them, Cat Wong might have the most unusual story about how she got there. The 25-year-old is a pipe fitter and welder. She was born in the US, but grew up with her family in Singapore. When she was 21, Cat made an unusual choice, and ended up in Ketchikan.

300 Villages: Thorne Bay

Joaquin Palomino, APRN – Anchorage

This week we’re heading to Thorne Bay, on Prince of Wales Island. Rochelle Huddleston Lorton is the district ranger for the U.S. Forest Service in Thorne Bay.

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