Federal regulators this week said the Seli’š Ksanka Qlispe’ Dam didn’t draw too much water out of Flathead Lake last summer.
As Montana Public Radio’s Aaron Bolton reports, some residents blamed the dam operator for historically low lake water levels.
Flathead Lake’s low waterline last summer was the result of a shallow snowpack and warm temperatures melting that snow quickly.
Residents filed complaints with federal energy regulators arguing that the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes drew too much water out of Flathead Lake.
They say that harmed the tourism industry.
Regulators say the dam stayed within the bounds of its license.
The CSKT are fending off another complaint, too.
A separate group of residents and business owners argues the dam should follow an old management plan that would keep more water in Flathead Lake.
CSKT officials say that plan was never approved and would reduce downstream flows, harming fish and other aquatic species.
Nellie Moore was a broadcast journalist who leaves a big footprint in Alaska and beyond.
She died last week at the age of 69.
Moore was one of the first Indigenous women to report in Alaska and was one of the early hosts of National Native News.
Rhonda McBride from our flagship station KNBA tells us how it all began in the Northwest Arctic community of Kotzebue.
“I don’t know how he learned to get into radio. But anyway, he had us doing it. And I would always find the tubes that somebody needed and put them in the tube tester to make sure they worked (laughter).”
Moore’s hands on experience impressed Alaska radio pioneer and author Alex Hills, who first met Moore at the Kotzebue airport, when her father brought her to meet the man who would become the first manager of KOTZ.
“I thought she was a rare find in many ways.”
Under Hills’ guidance, the station went on the air in 1973.
“Nellie, later as most people in Rural Alaska know, became Alaska’s leading Native journalist. But then she was just a young 19-year-old. Kinda spunky actually.”
That was Hills on the same radio show as Moore to talk about his new book on Alaska’s early days of radio and telecommunications.
“Nellie had her tape recorder and a microphone. They say a picture is worth a thousand words. In this case, Nellie was leaning forward, and the governor of Alaska was leaning back. That told me a lot about her interview style.”
Moore’s daughter Liz Cravalhos says no matter how successful her mother became, she never changed.
“That was her thing. She was a village girl, and she wasn’t going to be shy about talking about important issues.”
And that, says Alaska Native historian Paul Ongtooguk, was her legacy.
“Nellie demonstrated that journalism could be the voice of Alaska Native communities, in which Alaska Native communities could have a mirror, to help us understand our own communities.”
It wasn’t long before Moore went to work at KNBA in Anchorage, serving Native communities nationwide.
The Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative at the University of Arkansas is seeking Native youth to take part in its Native youth leadership summit.
The summit brings young people from across Indian Country to the university to explore career opportunities in food, agriculture and nutrition.
Applications are now open online for this summer’s summit for people ages 18-25.