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Archive for Saturday, May 17, 2003


May 17, 2003


Detroit: Authorities prepare to investigate mayor

Federal prosecutors said Friday that state police would investigate allegations surrounding Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, who has been accused of firing a deputy police chief scrutinizing his activities.

U.S. Atty. Jeffrey Collins also said two of his assistants would consult with state police during the investigation and determine if any federal laws were broken.

Last week, Deputy Police Chief Gary Brown said he was fired by the mayor because he was investigating allegations of drunken-driving accidents, falsified overtime records and a possible cover-up, all by members of Kilpatrick's security detail.

Kilpatrick, 32, has denied the allegations.

Washington, D.C.: Feds crack down on Internet crime

More than 130 people and $17 million have been seized nationwide in operations by the FBI and other agencies to stop cybercrime.

The Justice Department dubbed the effort "Operation E-con," a collection of investigations over the past five months targeting investment scams, sales of stolen software, online banking fraud -- even a purported Russian marriage service.

Officials estimated the collective losses across more than 90 investigations at $176 million, affecting about 89,000 victims.

California: Former president treated after dizzy spell

Former President Ford was briefly hospitalized Friday after getting dizzy while golfing in hot weather, his spokeswoman said.

"He had a dizzy spell playing golf this morning in 96-degree temperatures," said Penny Circle, a spokeswoman for the 89-year-old former president. "They just took him to the hospital to check him and everything seems to be OK."

The Secret Service drove Ford to an undisclosed Rancho Mirage-area hospital shortly before noon. He was released about 3 p.m. after a checkup, Circle said.

Washington, D.C.: National Guard announces consolidation

The Air National Guard and Army National Guard will reduce the number of their headquarters in 54 states and territories by two-thirds, the chief of the National Guard system said Friday.

Lt. Gen. H. Steven Blum said the consolidation plan would be presented Sunday at the spring conference of the Adjutants General Association of the United States in Columbus, Ohio.

The plan will apply to Air National Guard and Army National Guard headquarters in all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia, and the territories of Puerto Rico, Guam and the Virgin Islands.

Iowa: Kerry proposes $80 billion health plan

Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry unveiled his $80 billion health care plan Friday that aims to slash the spiraling costs of medical coverage, including expensive catastrophic treatment and employee premiums.

Speaking to a room of health care professionals in Des Moines, the Massachusetts senator said his plan for near-universal coverage -- some 95 percent of adults and nearly all children would be covered under his proposal -- addressed a problem that his rivals' plans did not.

To deal with catastrophic care, Kerry's plan would create a "premium rebate pool," run by the federal government. Companies that offer health care to their employees would be eligible for reimbursements from the money pool for 75 percent of the catastrophic costs they incur above $50,000.

In turn, the companies must use the savings to reduce the cost of workers' premiums.

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