- The Washington Times - Sunday, December 22, 2002

US Airways to cut costs more than expected
US Airways Group Inc. plans to reduce annual costs by more than $1.8 billion and hopes to emerge from bankruptcy protection in March under its reorganization plan, the airline said yesterday.
In a filing with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia in Alexandria, the seventh-largest U.S. airline said its lead investor, Retirement Systems of Alabama, will maintain its $240 million, or 36 percent, equity stake.
Retirement Systems of Alabama would have eight seats on a new 15-member US Airways board that will also have two new seats filled by labor representatives.
The state pension fund is also providing US Airways with $500 million in emergency financing as it rebuilds under protection from its creditors.
The court is due to consider the plan Jan. 16.

Executive charged with intercepting e-mail
LINCOLN, Neb. The longtime executive director of the state's largest anti-abortion group has been charged with a felony for purportedly intercepting e-mail and voice messages from Planned Parenthood of Lincoln, an abortion provider.
Nebraska Right to Life Director Julie Schmit-Albin, 46, was charged Friday along with former Planned Parenthood employee John F. Keller, 53, with intercepting communications.
Mr. Keller was able to access Planned Parenthood e-mails because he had set up the organization's computer system and knew the passwords of individual employees, police said.
Mrs. Schmit-Albin had been communicating with him via e-mail for several months, authorities said.
Mrs. Schmit-Albin's attorney, Sean Brennan, said the evidence was weak and that his client had clearly stated in an e-mail that she didn't want the information if it violated the law.

Collision kills three, including 7-year-old boy
LORDSBURG, N.M. A bus collided with a tractor-trailer rig as it merged onto an interstate, killing three persons, including a 7-year-old boy, and injuring at least 23 others, state police said.
The crashed happened Friday evening as the tour bus entered Interstate 10 from U.S. 80 between Lordsburg and the Arizona state line, Lt. Rob Shilling said.
The Phoenix Express Shuttle and Tours bus had 26 passengers and a driver.
The semi slammed into the rear of the merging bus, which rolled over more than once, state police patrolman Joey Gomez said.
Mr. Gomez said two people were pronounced dead at the scene.
The bus carried numerous Mexican nationals headed to the Phoenix area to visit relatives, Mr. Gomez said.
Of the 27 persons on board, he said, only the bus driver escaped injury.
A 79-year-old man, who had been listed in critical condition, died yesterday, Mr. Gomez said.

'Friends' to stay together another season
NEW YORK NBC's six "Friends" aren't breaking up yet. The network announced a surprise agreement yesterday to keep the top-rated comedy on the air for another season.
No details of the agreement between the network, Warner Brothers Productions, Bright/Kauffman/Crane Productions and the six lead actors were released. But NBC spokeswoman Rebecca Marks confirmed that the deal had been sealed early yesterday morning.
It was a welcome holiday present for NBC, which counts on "Friends" to kick off its powerful Thursday night lineup each week.
Jennifer Aniston, Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, Matt LeBlanc, Matthew Perry and David Schwimmer are all being paid $1 million per episode this season.

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