- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 7, 2002

Workers on welfare get minimum wage after all
The Bush administration yesterday said welfare recipients who are required to take community-service jobs would be entitled to the minimum wage, backtracking on one contentious element of its welfare plan.
Under the welfare plan released last week, the administration made it clear that these jobs should not be covered by minimum-wage and other worker-protections laws.
But yesterday, Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy G. Thompson said that "this administration has absolutely no intention of abandoning those very important protections."
"President Bush and I will insist that welfare recipients receive at least the minimum wage for the hours that they work, including community-service jobs," Mr. Thompson said.

Science panel OKs anthrax vaccine
The current anthrax vaccine, while in need of improvement, is safe and effective, a panel of the National Academy of Sciences reported yesterday.
"The anthrax vaccine should protect against even the inhalational form of the infection, but the lengthy vaccination schedule and the way the shots are physically administered make it far from optimal," said Brian L. Strom, chairman of the committee that reviewed the vaccine.
The committee urged the Defense Department to support research seeking a better vaccine.

After spacewalk, Hubble gets heart surgery
CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. The Hubble Space Telescope showed signs of life yesterday after a risky operation to replace a faulty power control unit a relief to NASA managers who feared they would not be able to restart the device.
Mission Control reported that a stream of data arrived from the Hubble, which had been shut off for almost five hours while spacewalking astronauts replaced the power unit. It had never been turned off while in orbit.
"Hubble has a heartbeat," said NASA spokesman Rob Navias.
Turning the telescope off was risky, but the decision was worth it to increase Hubble's scientific capabilities and guarantee its continued service, NASA managers said.

Ashcroft issues grant for Neighborhood Watch
Attorney General John Ashcroft yesterday gave the National Sheriff's Association $1.9 million in grant money to expand the country's Neighborhood Watch program.
The money will be used by the association to work with communities around the country to double the number of neighborhood vigilance programs over the next two years. The grants are part of a national challenge issued last year by President Bush and Mr. Ashcroft to enhance local homeland security efforts and increase local preparedness.
"Everyday citizens can assist local law enforcement by playing an active role in their communities and neighborhoods," Mr. Ashcroft said.

Bush poised to select new director of NIH
A top administrator at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine is President Bush's leading candidate to direct the National Institutes of Health, an administration official said.
Mr. Bush is preparing to nominate Dr. Elias Zerhouni, executive vice dean of the medical school, the official said late Tuesday, speaking on the condition on anonymity.
The top post at the nation's premier biomedical research agency has been vacant for more than two years.

Testimony supports Ex-radical in shooting
ATLANTA A wounded sheriff's deputy likely was disoriented by painkillers when he identified the former black-power radical once known as H. Rap Brown as the gunman who shot him and killed his partner, a toxicology expert testified yesterday.
Fulton County Deputy Aldranon English would have been confused by the morphine and other drugs given to him in a hospital when he selected Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin from a photo lineup, said Dr. David Benjamin.
The doctor was called by Mr. Al-Amin's attorneys to support their argument that someone else shot the deputies with an assault rifle when they tried to serve Mr. Al-Amin with a warrant on March 16, 2000.


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