Valdez Star photo
Rep. Eric Feige (left) held a constituents meeting at the Valdez LIO Monday afternoon to give Valdez voters a look at his take on the legislative session that ended last month. Feige's Valdez schedule included attending the Valdez City Council meeting that evening. He also said he will be participating – as a contestant – in this weekend's Valdez Fly In.
Fly In to Valdez this weekend
The annual Valdez Fly In will soar into Valdez Friday, as the popular airshow, competition and spectator-friendly event fills the skies – and runways – of Pioneer Field. The event features hundreds of aircraft, pilots and spectators enjoying a series of aerial demonstrations, competitions, and fun on the ground.
The main action for public spectators begins Saturday, with skydivers scheduled to set off the spectacles at 11:30 followed by a color guard display, an aerobatic show followed by the STOL competitions. A complete schedule, which is also weather-dependent, is available online at http://www.valdezalaska.org
Entrance is free.
Torpedoes rocket to top
Emma Childs and Chase Randall shot the Valdez Torpedoes to the top at Alaska Junior Olympics in Anchorage two weeks ago. The 10 and under competitors brought home two individual titles each while helping the club to some historic hardware.
"I'm super proud of our kids," Overduyn said his team's performance. "It shows that our kids are progressing and it shows our team is getting bigger overall."
Childs raced to a 32.44-second time to win the 50-yard backstroke. She also took the top spot in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 28.55 seconds. Randall won the 50-yard backstroke with a time of 36.91 seconds. He powered his way to a time of 1:18.68 minutes to win the 100-yard backstroke. Torpedoes coach Leo Overduyn was proud of his swimmers' performances.
Childs also took home the club's first High Point Award as the meet's second best swimmer in her age group. Overall, the seven swimmers represented the Torpedoes. Despite the small numbers, the team's efforts went unnoticed. At the end of the meet, they received an award for the fasted team percentage, a first under Overduyn as coach.
Cabin fees to increase
(AP) Campers will soon see a fee increase for public cabins maintained by Alaska State Parks.
The Peninsula Clarion reports that the increase, between $5 and $10 per night, depending on the cabin, will go into effect May 15 - though prior reservations made for the cabins will not be changed.
State parks deputy director Claire LaClaire says many of the state's 66 cabins have been booked for months.
LeClaire says the state has not changed its fees for state park cabin reservations for nine years and the state has continued to add cabins and seen use expand during that time. She also said fees from cabin-use as well as state maintained campgrounds and boat launches are used to pay for staff, utilities, operations costs and supplies for park areas.
Obamacare in Alaska
(AP) The number of Alaskans who signed up for a health insurance plan using the Affordable Care Act's health care marketplace fell short of the government's initial goal for the first year.
Numbers released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services show that nearly 13,000 Alaskans had signed up for coverage. Federal officials had originally targeted 16,000 Alaskans for enrollment, a goal set before the rocky launch of the online exchange.
The government reported in mid-March that 6,600 Alaskans had signed up, a number which nearly doubled in the last days before the March 31 deadline.
In Alaska, 88 percent of those who selected plans received federal help paying premiums. Forty-six percent of enrollees are between 45 and 64 years old.
Steve Revis photo
Teacher Linda Guthrie's fifth graders released classroom raised salmon fry at the salmon turnaround on the Richardson highway last week. Each fall, the students harvest salmon from the area with the help of biologists, then fertilize roe and raise the eggs until hatching and then raise the fry until they can be released in spring.
(AP) The Fairbanks-area plaintiffs in the long-running court fight over Alaska's redistricting plan are seeking more than $450,000 in legal fees.
Superior Court Judge Michael McConahy last month found George Riley and Ronald Dearborn to be the prevailing litigants in the lawsuit against the Alaska Redistricting Board from the filing of the original complaint in 2011 until July 14, 2013. He found the board to be the prevailing party on litigation after that date.
Attorneys for the men have asked for more than $437,000 in legal fees in line with the ruling.
But they also have requested a partial reconsideration of McConahy's decision, in seeking more than $19,000 in fees associated with the period in which the parties were arguing over who should be considered the prevailing party