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It's time to check out emergency equipment and procedures.

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Hydropower is gold in Southeast Alaska. With that, a $20 million loan for a new hydropower project on Prince of Wales Island is like striking gold.

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12/17/2013
No cuts for veterans

Congress has time to adjust its budget to accommodate the nation's veterans.

It should.

The fiscal cliff, which has become a regular occurrence in the nation and is coming up again in January, is prompting Congress to come up with a budget. It doesn't want a repeat of its scandalous behavior at the precipice of the October cliff. Neither Democrats or Republicans benefitted from that.

With a commitment to avoid that behavior, the House and Senate should be able to adjust the budget approved by the House last week to take better care of veterans.

If there is one group of Americans who should receive their benefits in full, without cuts, it is veterans. The Veterans of Foreign Wars agrees.

Retirement benefits for military retirees shouldn't be cut by $6 billion over the next 10 years.

The budget bill includes a 1-percent cut in cost-of-living adjustments for some retirees under 62 years old.

A 42-year-old sergeant first class retiree would lose about $72,000 over the course of a lifetime, according to estimates provided by some Senate Republicans. Senate Republicans are likely to vote against it. A few Senate Democrats are expected to oppose the cut to military benefits, too.

Veterans — men and women — who put themselves in harm's way for the benefit of this nation should be compensated well for their sacrifice and commitment to the nation; Congress should cut its own pay before it cuts their's.