Report critical of Tongass timber transitionWednesday, November 19, 2014 7:15am
- JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - A research firm says the U.S. Forest Service has done little to transition the nation's largest national forest in southeast Alaska to young-growth timber harvests. Headwaters Economics also says the agency continues to invest disproportionately in a timber industry that it says provides relatively few jobs while neglecting "more economically important industries," like tourism and fishing. The firm says that despite the dwindling Southeast timber industry and a promise by the Forest Service to transition out of old-growth harvests, the agency has continued to generously fund its timber program in the Tongass National Forest. The Juneau Empire reports the agency planned to discuss its plans for the Tongass late Wednesday afternoon.
2 injured in Chiniak banya explosionWednesday, November 19, 2014 7:00am
- KODIAK, Alaska (AP) - Two people in a rural Kodiak Island community were injured when they accidentally used fuel instead of water in a sauna-like building. The Kodiak Daily Mirror reports the man and woman were treated at a Kodiak hospital after the explosion Tuesday in Chiniak. The woman was to be flown outside Kodiak for further care. Alaska State Troopers say they were in a banya Tuesday when they accidentally used fuel oil instead of water. Troopers spokesman Eric Olsen said they are investigating, but don't believe it was anything other than an accident. Chiniak is located about 45 miles southeast of the city of Kodiak.
Teen indicted in fatal Juneau car crashWednesday, November 19, 2014 6:45am
- JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - A Juneau grand jury has indicted an 18-year-old driver involved in a fatal car crash. The Juneau Empire reports William M. Buchkoski was indicted on four felony counts in the March 26 death of a passenger in his sport utility vehicle, 18-year-old Jessica Louise Billy. Investigators say Buchkoski was driving on Yandukin Drive near Juneau International Airport and attempted a left turn onto Old Dairy Road but did not yield to a semi. The big truck T-boned the SUV. A second passenger, 20-year-old Shadd Rudick, was critically injured and remains at a rehabilitation center in Everett, Washington. The grand jury indicted Buchkoski on manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and two felony assault counts. He will be arraigned Dec. 17. Online court records did not indicate that he had an attorney.