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Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS -- Eric Quam and Scott Faeo won the 2015 Iron Dog race Saturday, crossing the finish line on the Chena River shortly after noon and claiming the top prize of $50,000.

Faeo, 31, is the first son of a former Iron Dog champion to win. His father, John Faeo, who met him at the finish line, was a part of seven championship teams, the first when Scott was a newborn.

Quam’s 8-year-old son, Henley, waved a checkered flag in downtown Fairbanks, as the team completed the 2,000-mile race marked by unseasonably warm weather and a difficult trail that was bare for long stretches, particularly early in the race...

Dermot Cole

In the face of a multibillion-dollar deficit, the Walker administration and state labor unions should renegotiate contract terms to lower health care costs and slow wage increases, Commonwealth North recommended in a wide-ranging budget analysis released Wednesday...

Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS -- Alaska political leaders joined with about 500 Fairbanks residents Tuesday to make the case for keeping troops in Alaska, specifically at Fort Wainwright.

In a lengthy evening session that echoed many of the comments offered Monday in Anchorage, a three-member Army team listened to dozens of speakers cite the strategic location of Alaska, community support for the military, the quality of local schools, the large number of veterans and tens of thousands of square miles of training space as key reasons to maintain the military presence.

“Our relationship is unique with the military,” said Gov. Bill Walker, adding that veterans choose to retire here in large numbers because it’s a great place to live. He said the state also fits into national defense...

Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS -- Iconic Alaska musher George Attla achieved some of his greatest victories on an Open North American Sled Dog Race trail that crosses the Chena River not far from the David Salmon Tribal Hall, where hundreds of people gathered Tuesday morning to honor his memory...

Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS -- Iconic Alaska musher George Attla achieved some of his greatest victories on an Open North American Sled Dog Race trail that crosses the Chena River not far from the David Salmon Tribal Hall, where hundreds of people gathered Tuesday morning to honor his memory.

Before a police escort and a procession to Fairbanks International Airport for a Wright Air Service flight that would carry the "Huslia Hustler" home, mourners described Attla as one who competed well and finished the race.

“So we say well done, well done George, you are and you remain a champion,” said the Rev. Jim Falsey...

Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS — Author Jon Krakauer posted "How Chris McCandless Died: An Update" Wednesday at the New Yorker online with the fifth theory he has put forward since 1993 to justify his claim that the young man did not die of reckless behavior, but of poisoning...

Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS — The long-awaited transition of local energy supplies away from dependence on heating oil advanced Thursday with state approval of a $29 million financing package to put pipes in the ground this summer in North Pole. Depending upon a gas supply arrangement — potentially from Cook Inlet — the system could be heating Fairbanks-area homes and businesses by mid-2016.

"It's a huge step in the right direction," said Steve Haagenson, a board member of the municipally owned Interior Gas Utility and former CEO of the local electric utility. "No matter where we get our gas from, we have to have pipes in the ground. This will be a critical year for us as it's going to be our first time in the field. We will be building this summer."...

Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS — The military says it knows why a rocket launched from the state-owned Kodiak rocket range had to be destroyed four seconds after launch last August, but refuses to release the report or disclose specific details of its contents other than to say “an external thermal protective cover designed to regulate motor temperature interfered with the launch vehicle steering assembly.”...

Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS — A new report on the salaries of executive branch employees in Alaska state government shows that top managers at state-owned corporations — with one exception — earned more than state commissioners or the governor in 2014.

The report covers nearly 200 top officials in 14 departments, plus the University of Alaska and 12 state-owned corporations.

Salaries for the leaders of five of the corporations topped the governor’s salary of $145,000 by more than $100,000 last year, while two of them exceeded it by more than $200,000. At the University of Alaska, the president, three vice presidents and three chancellors all earned more than $200,000 in 2014...

Dermot Cole

FAIRBANKS -- In the latest sign that the Air Force plans to station four dozen of the nation’s newest fighter jets in Interior Alaska, the Obama administration is seeking $37 million for an F-35 flight simulator at Eielson Air Force Base for combat training.

Eielson needs the six-bay simulator for the “training of pilots accompanying the arrival of 48 F-35 aircraft starting in the third quarter” of fiscal year 2019, the proposed Air Force budget says. Last August, the Air Force selected Eielson as the preferred location t o be the second main operating base for the jets, with an official announcement expected this year...

Dermot Cole

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