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Sep 23 2014
Spent Brewery Grains to Farms Protected
Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Liz Ruskin/APRN
    Sen. Lisa Murkowski, along with beer-makers around the country, is celebrating a recent clarification from the Food and Drug Administration about spent grains, a byproduct of the brewing process.
    Beer-makers often donate their spent grains to farms to use as animal feed.  But proposed changes to the rules for animal feed producers had brewers fearing they were going to face a pile of new red tape.
    Murkowski, who is co-chair of the Senate Brewers Caucus, took up the cause.
    In a sternly worded letter to the FDA in April, she said the rules would destroy the symbiotic relationship between Alaska’s brewers and farmers.
    But the FDA has been saying for months it was all a mistake. The agency says it never meant to apply the animal feed rule to breweries, and that’s now spelled out in the rule.
    Murkowski, in a written statement Monday, said she appreciated the FDA’s new approach. 

Sep 23 2014
Bears' Sports Update
Tuesday, 23 September 2014

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    The volleyball team placed fifth in the West Anchorage High School “Spiketacular” tournament, which pitted two dozen teams in pool and then bracket play.

    The coach’s kids dominated the 33rd annual Soldotna High School swimming pentathlon. The event is different from most swim meets in that it combines the times from five races — the 100-yard individual medley , the 50-yard butterfly , the 50-yard backstroke, the 50-yard breaststroke and the 50-yard freestyle — and the fastest swimmer through all five races is crowned champion.
    Senior Tahna Lindquist won the girls’ division with a combined time of 2-minutes 57.51 seconds, while her brother, freshman Talon, won the boys’ in 2-minutes 36.59 seconds.
    Tahna was six seconds faster than second place, and Talon was almost six seconds ahead in his competition.
    In the girls’ standings, Kodiak’s Marina Cummiskey and Roslyn Kreigh were 5th and 8th, respectively. The Kodiak girls racked up a total of 47 team points, good for second. Host SoHi won the overall with 54 points. Colony was a distant third with 22.
    On the boys side, the Bears won the team title handily, with 70 points over Colony’s 47 and Soldotna’s 31. Dyton and Nathan Schauff and Blake and Luke James all finished in the top 10.

    On the Baranof Park gridiron, the Bears found the offensive punch they’ve been looking for all season, with a 38-6 win over Barrow, snapping a three-game losing streak. They’re now 2-4 on the season overall.

Sep 22 2014
Assembly Finalizes State Project Wishlist
Monday, 22 September 2014

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    At Thursday night’s Kodiak Island Borough Assembly meeting, the capital improvements list was approved. It’s the borough’s “wish list” for project funding that is sent to the governor and our legislative delegation each year.
    Borough Manager Bud Cassidy informed the assembly of some recent changes to the list:
    “Based on your comments at the last work session, we’ve done a couple of things. You met with both representatives from Senator Steven’s office as well as Representative Austerman, and they suggested a few changes and you agreed. So what we did was eliminated two projects; one was extending public utilities to Swampy Acres, and also elimination of the Antone Larson switchback project. We also moved up to number three, third priority project is the Antone Larson Road extension.”
    That project would take the road out to waters ice-free during the winter to better serve islanders on the West Side.
    The top priority for the assembly was $1.8-million more for the landfill’s expansion, which includes its own wastewater treatment plant.
    Project 2 on the Borough’s list is asking the Governor to include $50-million toward construction of the ferry that will someday replace the Tustumena. Total cost is expected to be $250-million, and the ship is currently in the design phase.
    As Cassidy noted, the Anton Larsen Bay Road extension was moved up to number three, with a request of $6-million.
    A half-million dollars are being sought to study the feasibility, planning and design of providing water and sewer service to the 256 residential parcels in Monashka Bay, which is currently outside the City of Kodiak’s reach.
    Four-million dollars is being requested for road improvements and paving, $180,000 for traffic flow improvements at East Elementary School, and the same amount for parking improvements at Peterson Elementary.
    Though he voted for the list, which passed unanimously, Assemblyman Mel Stephens said juggling priorities year-over-year might not be the best practice.
    “If a project has a certain priority in one year, it’s hard for me to fathom why that priority should change the next year. There’s certainly reasons why that might come about, but what tends to happen is people come in and get behind a particular project and ‘oh, lets move this up one and let’s move this other one down one.’ I don’t really know if that’s the most effective way to present our CIP list.”
    He also asked that more complete back up documentation be provided in future CIP lists.

Sep 22 2014
Cruise Ship Schedule Includes a Dozen Visits
Monday, 22 September 2014



The Holland America Lines cruise ship Statendam, on an early season visit to Kodiak in 2006. It will return nine times to Kodiak in 2015. KMXT file photo


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    The Kodiak cruise ship schedule for 2015 has been announced by Discover Kodiak, the island’s tourism promotion bureau.
    There are a dozen visits on the tentative scheduled, beginning on May 5th, when the Crystal Cruise Lines Crystal Symphony arrives. The Holland America Lines Volendam will make a stop here on what is called a repositioning cruise, where it sails from the Far East back to the Western Hemisphere for the summer. It is scheduled to pull into port on May 9th.
    Later in the month, the Statendam, also owned by Holland America, will begin twice-monthly visits on Wednesdays that will last through mid-September. The Statendam will dock at 7 a.m. on each of its visits and depart at 2 p.m.
    The last cruise ship of the season will be Silver Seas Lines Silver Shadow, calling on September 19th.
    The ships have a passenger capacity between 382 for the Silver Shadow, 922 for the Crystal Symphony, 1,260 for the Statendam, and 1,432 for the Volendam, but it is unlikely to be full on its repositioning cruise.
    Discover Kodiak cautions that the schedule is tentative, and could change by the start of next season.

Sep 22 2014
Cobell Indiant Trust Settlement Check Now Arriving
Monday, 22 September 2014

Daysha Eaton/KYUK
    Alaska Natives have recently begun receiving checks from the Cobell Indian Trust Settlement. The checks are part of a nearly $950 million payout to plaintiffs in the Cobell Lawsuit, which was filed in the 1990s against the federal government for the mismanagement of individual Indian trust accounts.
    The accounts primarily contained money collected by the federal government from farming and grazing leases, timber sales, mining, oil and gas production, and other activities on Indian Trust Land.
    The Cobell Settlement is the largest class action settlement against the federal government.
    Filed in 1996 by the late Elouise Cobell and other Native American leaders, it sought an accounting of the individual Indian trust accounts and reform of the trust system, which had been mismanaged for over a century.
    Once the case settled, counsel for the Plaintiffs were tasked with distributing funds to 500,000 individual Native beneficiaries across the country, including Alaska.
    The first checks for the ‘trust administration class’ of the settlement were mailed out September 15th. Checks for the ‘historical accounting class’ portion of the settlement was issued over a year ago.
    But not everyone due a check has received one. It turns out the federal government doesn’t know where more than 30,000 class members of the lawsuit are.
    If you think you may be a class member but have not received payment, you can visit Indian Trust online, or give them a call at 1-800-961-6109. 

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