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A sometimes-emotional debate about formalizing relations between the Municipality of Anchorage and the Native Village of Eklutna ended with a vote by the Anchorage Assembly on Tuesday to spend the next year exploring ways to bring the two groups closer together.

The debate centered around whether or not to delay the resolution, which Assemblymember Crystal Kennedy of Eagle River said could have “unintended consequences.”

Kennedy said she was not against having a conversation with the tribal government, but initially had concerns about a lack of public input.

Senators on Tuesday approved a defense spending bill that prohibits the Department of Defense from studying base closures in Alaska through 2020.

U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan praised the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act in a Tuesday statement. Sen. Sullivan, who sits on the Senate Armed Services Committee, said the bill “provides support for Alaska’s military priorities.”

The DOD did not seek any Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) actions this year, but the new bill would specifically prohibit them in 2020.

Items in the Police Briefs are taken from the Anchorage Police Department’s online crime mapping system. Details about individual events are provided by the department’s public information office. Defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

Birchwood Community Council members voted Wednesday to ask the Alaska Attorney General’s office to oppose the Native Village of Eklutna in its lawsuit against the U.S. Department of the Interior.

Birchwood residents are celebrating after a controversial project that would have run a water transmission line through their community has been scrapped.

“There are no plans for AWWU to move forward,” Gretchen Wehmhoff told the Birchwood Community Council Wednesday.

Students in Brian Mason’s class at Chugiak High didn’t ace their big test Tuesday. They butchered it.

Mason brought a cow moose carcass to class in the back of his pickup truck that morning, and for the rest of the day his students went to work de-boning, separating, grinding and packaging the animal. The bloody business served as a way to immerse the World Discovery Seminar program students in Alaska cultural traditions, give them a basic understanding of anatomy and teach them practical life skills.

Holiday spirit burned hot on a chilly Friday night in Eagle River last week as the annual Winter Wonderland and Merry Merchant Munch events returned to fill Town Square Park with children, community and cheer.

Not everyone went home happy, but they all drove the same roads home.

A hotly anticipated community meeting on the future of Chugiak-Eagle River schools produced a few barbs but few fireworks Monday at Mirror Lake Middle School as the debate continued between neighbors who support paying to repair earthquake-damaged Gruening Middle School and those who hope to combine the area’s two public high schools.

Editor’s note: The following story contains depictions of sexual violence that may be disturbing to some readers.

A 34-year-old Chugiak man has reached a deal with state prosecutors to admit he raped a 9-year-old girl on Memorial Day of 2018.

The National Weather Service has issued a High Wind Warning for Turnagain Arm, Anchorage and Eagle River through 6 p.m. Monday as a warm winter storm brought record temperatures and high wind gusts to the area.

The highest winds were expected Monday evening, according to the alert issued at 3:22 a.m. Monday.

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