New group jumping into Alaska Senate raceThursday, July 31, 2014 10:00am
- JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - A new group is getting involved in Alaska's U.S. Senate race, aimed at curbing spending by outside groups that don't disclose their donors. CounterPAC wants Democratic Sen. Mark Begich and Republican hopeful Dan Sullivan to disavow any "secret" money spent on their behalves. If such groups continue spending money, the candidate who benefits would donate money to a charity his opponent chooses. CounterPAC co-founder Jim Greer said it's less stringent than a Sullivan proposal aimed at limiting radio and TV ads by special interests. While Sullivan is in a contested primary, he and Begich have been the targets of outside groups. CounterPAC is billed as a nonpartisan group financially backed by technology entrepreneurs. Greer says the group is filing with the Federal Election Commission and will disclose its donors.
Sea lion carcass found near KetchikanThursday, July 31, 2014 9:45am
- KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) - Authorities hope a necropsy can determine a cause of death for a Steller sea lion found near Ketchikan. The Ketchikan Daily News reports the sea lion was found dead Wednesday close to Refuge Cove State Park. Gary Freitag is with the Alaska Marine Mammal Stranding Network. He says there was no obvious cause of death for the sea lion, but they weren't able to turn over the 1,000-pound sea lion to check for injuries on the other side. The carcass was tied to a rock to prevent is from washing out to sea before the necropsy, which could be conducted as soon as Thursday.
UAS eliminates 4 Juneau jobs to meet budgetThursday, July 31, 2014 9:30am
- JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - The University of Alaska Southeast campus in Juneau will eliminate four positions as it deals with a $2 million deficit this year. The Juneau Empire reports state funding for the university system was cut by more than $8 million this year, and more than $1 million of that was at the Juneau campus. On top of that, employee salary and benefits increased about $750,000 this year, and campus officials anticipate $205,000 less in tuition because of declining enrollment. Of the four positions to be eliminated, two were open and won't be filled. The retirements of 12 others at the end of the academic year also will help, and the university will close a building and a bookstore to help meet the budget.