- The Washington Times - Monday, March 28, 2005

HAWAII

Native language enjoys revival

HONOLULU — “E heluhelu kakou,” Nakoolani Warrington tells her third-graders — “let’s read together.”

But there is no need to translate at Ke Kula Kaipuni o Anuenue, a public school where all instruction for the 350 students is in the Hawaiian language.

The school represents a turnaround for the native language. A 1983 survey estimated that only 1,500 people remained in Hawaii who could speak the language, most of them elderly. Today there are probably 6,000 to 8,000 Hawaiian-language speakers throughout the state, most younger than 30, said Kalena Silva, professor at the University of Hawaii-Hilo.

NORTH CAROLINA

Newspaper begins online experiment

GREENSBORO — It is a journalist’s job to ask questions, but they usually are aimed at outsiders.

At the News & Record, a newspaper in Greensboro with a daily circulation of 93,000, reporters and editors are asking tough questions about the paper itself, including: If the paper needs to change to survive, what changes should be made?

Seeking the answers, the paper has started an online experiment. The News & Record’s Web site features 11 staff-written Web journals, or blogs, including one by the editor that answers readers’ questions, addresses their criticisms and discusses how the paper is run.

CALIFORNIA

Jackson calls himself a victim of conspiracy

LOS ANGELES — Declaring himself “completely innocent” of child-molestation charges, Michael Jackson said yesterday that he is the victim of a conspiracy and asked fans around the world to pray for him.

In an interview with the Rev. Jesse Jackson broadcast live on the Internet, the entertainer would not elaborate on his conspiracy belief, citing the court-imposed gag order that prevents him from discussing his trial in detail.

However, he said he thinks he is just the latest of several “black luminaries” to be unjustly accused, citing former South African President Nelson Mandela and former heavyweight boxing champions Muhammad Ali and Jack Johnson as others.

Mr. Jackson also said he is in “intense pain” since falling in the shower earlier this month, although he said at another point that his health was perfect.

FLORIDA

Mud-wrestling troops face punishment

MIAMI — Ten members of an Army military police unit should be disciplined for staging a mud-wrestling match at a U.S. military prison in Iraq, an investigation concluded.

No detainees saw the episode in October at Camp Bucca, one of the largest U.S.-controlled detention centers in Iraq, officials said.

The investigation involved reservists from the Tallahassee-based 160th Military Police Battalion, spokesman Steve Stromvall said Friday from Army Reserves headquarters in Atlanta.

It is up to the Army Reserves commander, Lt. Gen. James Helmly, to decide how to discipline the three female guards who wrestled, six sergeants who encouraged them and a soldier who let one of the women change in his quarters, Mr. Stromvall said. He said the decision on punishment had not been made.

The New York Daily News published photos of the incident, including images of women wrestling in bras and panties in front of a crowd of male soldiers.

GEORGIA

Capitol crowd rallies against voting ID

ATLANTA — More than 100 people rallied outside the Capitol to protest a proposal to require picture identification for voting. Opposition to the plan comes from civil rights groups, the League of Women Voters and the state AARP.

They say the proposal is a Republican ploy to depress voting among the people most likely to have no driver’s license or passport — minorities, the poor and the elderly.

IOWA

Change machine gives big payoffs

COUNCIL BLUFFS — Customers who used the bill-changing machine at Bluffs Run Casino found they had bigger payoffs than any gambling device in the place.

That was because the machine was spitting out hundreds instead of twenties.

“It went on for about six hours,” said the casino’s finance director, Janae Sternberg. When the machine was shut down, it turned up $46,640 short.

State records say casino employee Judith Roederer-Dillard — who has since been fired — mistakenly placed the $100 bills in the machine about 5 a.m. Dec. 18.

Administrative law judge Teresa K. Hillary awarded the fired employee full unemployment benefits, saying there was no evidence of deliberate misconduct.

LOUISIANA

Ivan found to cause severe sand loss

NEW ORLEANS — New measurements of Hurricane Ivan’s erosion of beaches, dunes and barrier islands along the Gulf of Mexico underscore how vulnerable the American shoreline is to such storms, a U.S. Geological Survey oceanographer says.

Ivan’s center made landfall Sept. 16 at Gulf Shores, Ala., with 115-mph wind and a storm surge estimated at 10 to 13 feet high.

Ivan washed away as much as 164 feet of beach in places, said Abby Sallenger, an oceanographer for the Geological Survey’s Center for Coastal & Watershed Studies in St. Petersburg, Fla. He presented his findings Friday at the National Hurricane Conference in New Orleans.

MASSACHUSETTS

Closed churches get Easter reprieve

SUDBURY — Almost a year after the Boston Archdiocese closed or consolidated 80 parishes, priests were sent out to celebrate Easter Mass in one-day-only services for three of the shuttered congregations.

Parishioners have been conducting a round-the-clock vigil inside St. Anselm while they appeal Archbishop Sean O’Malley’s decision to close the parish, part of the belt-tightening move brought on by the financial troubles after the clergy sex-abuse lawsuit settlements.

More than 400 people filled the church’s pews, about twice the usual crowd before St. Anselm was closed.

The archbishop also allowed Easter Masses at St. Albert the Great in Weymouth and at a school for parishioners of Mary Star of the Sea church in Quincy.

MONTANA

Back wages cost company $600,000

BILLINGS — Stillwater Mining Co., the only palladium and platinum producer in the United States, paid 749 workers nearly $600,000 in back overtime wages after an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor, an agency official said.

The department said Stillwater didn’t include production bonuses in the regular rate of pay before calculating overtime, violating the overtime provision of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

NEW JERSEY

Ex-campaign official sentenced for bribery

NEWARK — Robert C. Janiszewski, the state chairman for Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign who turned government informant when confronted with his own misdeeds, was sentenced to 41 months in prison.

Janiszewski pleaded guilty in 2002, admitting he took more than $100,000 in bribes during his 13 years as Hudson County’s top elected official.

TEXAS

Declaration donated to Alamo library

SAN ANTONIO — One of only 13 surviving copies of the Texas Declaration of Independence has been donated to the Republic of Texas Library at the Alamo.

Descendants of Samuel Augustus Maverick, a land baron who was mayor of San Antonio and who attended the meeting in 1836 when the declaration was signed, made the donation to the Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library last summer. The presentation ceremony was held last week.

Of the other copies thought to have survived, some are privately held and others are held by archives, museums and public libraries, said Elaine Davis, director of the library.

Laura Maverick Meadows Partain, a descendant of Maverick, said she wanted his copy to be available to the public.

WYOMING

Study finds labor shortage

CASPER — Wyoming is facing widespread labor shortages, a lack of sites ready for development and a work ethic that is lacking, an industry study said.

The Wadley-Donovan Study on Target Industries and Workforce Availability also shows that employers often don’t use the state’s colleges or university for recruiting even though they rate the quality of those institutions as satisfactory to good.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide