President signs family-support bill
A law boosting funding for family-support programs was signed yesterday by President Bush.
The $305 million Promoting Safe and Stable Families program will receive an additional $200 million in discretionary funds for the next five years, plus $67 million for the next two years to mentor children of prisoners and $60 million a year for education and training vouchers for teens and young adults who left foster care.
Lyme disease cases climb to record high
ATLANTA Reported cases of Lyme disease, the tick-borne illness that can cause fatigue, sore joints and heart damage, climbed to a record high in 2000, the government reported yesterday.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it recorded 17,730 cases, up 8 percent from 1999. The figure comes from just 44 states and the District of Columbia, so the actual count is probably higher.
Lyme cases nearly doubled in the 1990s, in part because more Americans built homes in the woods, exposing themselves to ticks, according to the CDC.
Bioethics advisers tackle cloning
A presidential advisory council on bioethics began its work yesterday by examining the ethical, scientific and legal issues surrounding human cloning.
The 18-member council is looking at the philosophical and scientific underpinnings of the debate.
It also plans to address the specific issue before Congress: whether a ban on cloning should include research and medical treatments or be limited to efforts to create another human being.
President Bush already has said he favors a total ban on human cloning, and it is not known what effect council recommendations might have on his position.
Galileo hits glitch in Jupiter moon flyby
LOS ANGELES The Galileo spacecraft, which yesterday began its final flyby past one of Jupiter’s four major moons, was unable to collect data after mistakenly shutting down onboard computers, U.S. space scientists said.
Eileen Theilig, project manager at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, said Galileo, which has been orbiting Jupiter since 1995, had placed itself into “standby mode” while approaching Io.
She said Galileo’s flight team was sending commands to the spacecraft in hopes that it would switch the computers back on in time for the rest of the Io flyby.
“We’re not totally surprised because Galileo has already outlived expectations and we knew that it might encounter additional difficulties from the high-radiation environment on this flyby,” she said.
First lawsuit filed in Flight 587 crash
NEW YORK The wife of one of the 270 people killed in the crash of American Airlines Flight 587 into a residential neighborhood in Queens on Nov. 12 has filed the first civil suit relating to the crash at U.S. District Court here.
Margarita Del Carmen Montan is seeking as much as $225 million in damages from American Airlines, Airbus, European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company and BAE Systems in the death of her husband, Jose Angel Rosa.
“American Airlines cannot meet its burden of proving that it took all necessary measures to avoid the subject air crash or that it was impossible for American Airlines to take such measures,” the civil complaint said.
Illegal aliens get break on Berkeley tuition
LOS ANGELES Illegal aliens will get an $11,000 break on tuition at the University of California under a plan approved yesterday that allows many of them to pay the amount charged to in-state residents.
Students who graduated from a California high school after three years of attendance will pay in-state tuition, regardless of immigration status, under the plan.
The vote by the university system’s Board of Regents was 17-5.
Immigrants will have to file for legalized status to qualify for the in-state rate of $4,000 per year.