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Ketchikan assembly rejects meeting prayer proposal

Wednesday, October 22, 2014 5:45am
- KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) - The Ketchikan Gateway Borough Assembly has turned down a proposal to begin regular meetings with prayer. The Ketchikan Daily News reports the proposal failed 5 to 2 Monday following public testimony from both sides of the issue. Some of those speaking in favor of meeting prayers talked about the long-standing practice of legislative prayers in the nation. Some opponents said they would feel alienated by prayer at meetings and others said such a policy would discourage people from attending. The assembly also rejected a proposed amendment to put the issue on the 2015 local ballot. Local minister Bill White asked if he would be welcome to deliver a prayer during citizen comments. Borough Mayor David Landis said he personally would enjoy hearing from White.

Suspected impaired driver charged with assault

Wednesday, October 22, 2014 5:30am
- WASILLA, Alaska (AP) - A Wasilla man suspected of driving while impaired with two people in his car has been charged with felony assault after they were hurt in a crash. State Troopers say 44-year-old John Murtha was arrested Monday night. He remains in custody at Mat-Su Pretrial Facility. Troopers took a call just before 10 p.m. Monday that a car had crashed into a utility pole on Forest Lake Drive outside Wasilla. Troopers say the car crossed the opposite lane and hit the pole. The two passengers were taken to Mat-Su Regional Medical Center. Murtha was charged Tuesday with the felony assault counts and a misdemeanor driving under the influence count. His bail was set at $15,000. Online court documents did not indicate that he was represented by an attorney.

Fairbanks schools won't suspend recruitment

Wednesday, October 22, 2014 5:15am
- ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Administrators in the Anchorage and Matanuska-Susitna school districts have suspended military recruiting at schools after allegations of sexual advances by recruiters but officials in Fairbanks say they have no plans to limit visits. Fairbanks school board President Heidi Haas tells the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner she's not concerned about problems with recruiters at district schools. She says no instances of misconduct were reported in Fairbanks and the district has procedures in place for school staff to report concerns. Anchorage School Superintendent Ed Graff placed a moratorium on visits after news reports that at least one Alaska National Guard recruiter had made unwelcome advances on high school students in schools. Graff said Monday student safety is the district's top priority. The Mat-Su district suspended visits Tuesday.

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