Statewide Briefs

Panel nixes Palin pay increase A state commission has reversed it recommendation to grant a pay raise to Gov. Sarah Palin, but the panel is still pushing for a $15,000 average raise for state legislators. The State Offi cers Compensation Commission had earlier recommended salary increases for Palin, top state department heads and lawmakers.

College Bound

Prop 8 protests rage on In Sacramento, Calif., the largest crowd yet gathered at the State Capitol for the fi fth day in a row protesting the recent rulings of Proposition 8, which bans same-sex marriage in the state. Prop 8 has brought together over 5,000 activists who have gathered in front of the Capitol to protest the rulings and to voice their anger for the ruling.

Campuswide Briefs

Proposed new sports arena gets a correction In November, TNL reported that a $65 million proposal for a new sports arena at UAA was included in the Board of Regents' proposed capital budget. It was sent on to Gov. Sarah Palin and is awaiting her approval before it is sent to the legislature.

Obama’s win makes big bang in gun sales

Despite the dire state of the U.S. economy, gun stores around the nation have been reporting record sales since Barack Obama won the bid for for the presidency. Many attribute the massive increase of gun sales to the National Rifl e Association. During the presidential campaign, the NRA started a multimillion-dollar advertising binge that entailed television ads and mass mailings.

Alaska’s own joins ranks to fi ght climate change

In an effort to curb greenhouse gas emissions, leaders from all over the world, including one from Alaska, gathered to discuss different strategies. Kate Troll, executive director of Alaska Conservation Alliance, was invited to attend the Global Climate Summit in California last November.

Men gradually disappearing from higher education

This year's Fall Enrollment Report is out, and numbers show that despite the fact that there are more men than women in Anchorage, women are making up about 60 percent of UAA's student body. This is on par with the rest of the nation, where across the board there are more women than men enrolling in and graduating from secondary education.

UAA gets funds for alcohol fetal syndrome study

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is a problem all over the nation, but the incidence of FAS in Alaska is 30 percent higher than the national average. According to a survey released in 2002, conducted by the Center for Disease Control, the state of Alaska had approximately 45 Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder births per 30,284 live births between 1995 and 1997.

Grief, suicide in Native communities get a closer look

Multi-generational grief and trauma remain prevalent in today's Alaska Native population. This was made clear last November in the UAA Alaska Native Specifi c Grief public discussion, led by Corky Cantil of Orca Consulting. "Because of the nature of various types of grief that Alaska Natives deal with. there are often times when that grief will remain unidentifi ed," Cantil said, who is of the Tshimshian from Southeast Alaska.

Student advocates prepare to descend on Juneau

Every January, as 20 senators and 40 House Representatives return to session in Juneau, approximately 20 college students are right at their heels. Colleges and universities around the state send several student members every year to meet with legislators and lobbyists to voice their concerns about various issues.

Students call for cameras

The UAA campus could soon be considered a safer place at night. That is if three students have their wish granted. Resident Life student employees Brittany Richards, Robert Tran and Brionne Elkins are the motor behind the motion to do just that. According to Elkins, the three of them had started brainstorming about what could make campus housing more secure after noticing the trend of break-ins in the parking lots around campus.

New AK Census Bureau

Just off West International Airport Road is a small recently leased office with more than a dozen empty desks inside and an air of secrecy all around it. This is the home of what will soon become the central hub for the 2010 census headcount. Within the month, every desk at the Anchorage Census Office will be full and 2,000 to 3,000 employees will be responsible for getting as accurate a count of Alaskans and their specifics as possible.

USUAA elections go unannounced, uncontested

A week after the presidential elections, students might have noticed ballot boxes and polling stations around the UAA Campus. Unbeknownst to many, four students were running for USUAA Student Government positions. "There were two senators running. and there were two students for Concert Board," said USUAA president Karl Wing.

A new sports complex for UAA requires hurdling

The Well's Fargo Sports Complex hosts numerous sporting events, but as UAA grows, many are finding it too small to house events, training and recreation comfortably. The complex was built more than 30 years ago and was not designed to accommodate Division I and Division II athletics, let alone the number of students and alumni that make use of the facilities.

Economy slump has students degree hopping

There is no secret about it, the economy is in a tailspin. In the month of October, the nation hit a sobering new record of 10.1 million people without work. The national unemployment rate is at a 14-year high of 6.5 percent. And in Alaska that amount is just a little higher at 6.

Russia at a glance

Last November, unbeknownst to most Russians, approximately 70 American students and expatriots gathered in a small American-run bar to celebrate the curious tradition of Thanksgiving dinner and football. Everyone showed up eager to find a morsel of holiday familiarity.

Statewide Briefs

While the economy sinks, bank robberies rise The Wells Fargo Bank on East 5th Avenue in Anchorage was robbed last Friday. The subject was described as a white male in his late 30s, about 5'8, slender build, with short brown hair. The subject entered the bank and demanded money from the teller, but did not show or threaten to have a weapon.

Marshmallow bandit runs amuck on UAA campus

Last Saturday, about a dozen squad cars surrounded the Sears Mall on Northern Lights Blvd. following a bank robbery at the Wells Fargo Bank. As fully armed police officers ran through the mall, bystanders claimed a woman dressed as a marshmallow robbed the bank and ran through the mall.

Stevens and Begich too close to call

Election Night in Anchorage, hours after President-elect Barack Obama gave his acceptance speech, voters continued to wait with anxious anticipation for statewide election results. The most talked about campaign was the senatorial race between incumbent Ted Stevens and Mayor Mark Begich.

Election Day electrifies Campus

UAA was in full form on Election Day. The Den was turned into an election news hub with four different news networks running on four separate screens. Students sat and discussed as the election results poured in from the entire country. "It's been a lot of fun.

Nationwide Briefs

Calif. gay-marriage ban creates legal uncertainty Last week Californians passed a new ban on gay marriage, overturning a prior ruling by the California Supreme Court that allowed same-sex couples the right to wed. Legal experts said it is unclear whether an attempt by gay-rights activists to overturn the prohibition had any chance of success, and whether the 18,000 same-sex marriages performed in California over the past four months are in any danger.

Statewide Briefs

Palin denounces critics as cowards Several days after Palin returned to Alaska from her two-month odyssey as GOP vice president nominee, she unleashed a litany of complaints aimed at her critics. She called her critics cowards and jerks for chiding her anonymously, and insisted she never asked for the $150,000 wardrobe purchased for her use on the campaign trail.

Senator a felon in D.C., hero in Alaska

After a 35-day trial and a conviction of seven felony accounts, Senator Ted Stevens returned to Anchorage optimistic. Approximately 300 supporters greeted the senator in the Pen Air hanger at the Ted Stevens International Airport, chanting, "We love you, Uncle Ted.

Student loan crush

For reasons ranging from simply unwilling to economic hardship, some students fail to pay back their student loans in a timely fashion. Mark McArthur, Alaska Chair for Student Loan Justice said he knew first hand how it felt to be overwhelmed with debt. "I graduated with a loan of $18,000," McArthur said.

News Briefs

A last push to deregulate The Bush administration is working hard to enact a wide array of federal regulations before a new administration takes over in January and while Congress is not in session to veto. The regulations would weaken government rules that currently protect consumers and the environment.

Students get say in how they read

For the first time, the Consortium Library is conducting a LibQual survey to learn what students want and expect of library services. First tested at Texas A&M, LibQUAL is a nationally accredited survey created by the Association of Research Libraries. The survey will include students, faculty and staff at both the UAA and APU campuses.

Staewide Briefs

New ethics complaint filed against Palin With Troopergate barely behind her, Governor Sarah Palin faces yet another abuse of power charge. The complaint alleges that Palin used her official position as governor for personal gain, violating a statute of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act.

Empty Spaces: New parking lacks cars

Within walking distance of UAA, there can be found 160 empty parking spaces. Last week the university opened up the Piper Parking Lot just across 36th Street on Piper Street. The new parking lot is located on what is now being called "South Campus." This is where construction has just begun on the new Health Services building, slated to open next year.

Nationwide Briefs

Pipeline Burst at Prudhoe Two BP well pads producing 5,000 barrels of oil per day were forced to shut down last week, when a pressurized gas pipeline blew apart. Investigators found that corrosion had attacked the outside surface of the above-ground pipe at the point where insulation jackets were missing.

Age, Gender, Politics: New Bethel mayor tackles all

The women's liberation movement (WLM) that shook up the Lower 48 during the 1960s had little impact on the state of Alaska. Yet somehow, women have been smashing Alaska's glass ceiling in such numbers that it would seem the WLM started here. Powerful positions of corporations and state are filling up with women, in a state where they are still the minority.

UAA endowment fund troubled by frozen investments

Ongoing turbulence in the stock market is affecting how much money the University of Alaska system will receive from its endowment fund, according to fund managers. Jim Lynch, assistant vice president for finance at the UA Foundation - which manages and invests the endowment fund - told The Northern Light that the steady drop in the stock market is taking a bite out of the fund's $250 million value.