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October 06, 1989 - Image 2

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1989-10-06

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Page 2-The Michigan Daily - Friday, October 6, 1989
Document reveals HUD misdealing

WASHINGTON (AP) - Former Housing
Secretary Samuel Pierce urged an aide to arrange
financing for a New York City project after re-
ceiving a written appeal from another Reagan
administration official, documents released yes-
terday show.
"Pierce's handwritten instruction to former ex-
ecutive assistant Debore Gore Dean to "check
into this and try to get it through" suggest a
more active role than Pierce has acknowledged in
seeuring federal housing subsidies for individuals
who made requests to him personally.
In response to Freedom of Information Act re-
quests, HUD yesterday released more than 20,000
pages of documents from the files of Dean,
whose position made her a key official at HUD
and who has refused to testify before Congress on
conistitutional grounds.
In the files were letters showing Dean received
requests for help on projects form members of
Congress, including Democrats, and other offi-
cials. The files also show then-Defense Secretary
Caspar Weinberger and White House aides were
among the politically connected who contacted

Pierce and Dean regarding HUD projects and an-
other occasion in which former HUD Secretary
Carla Hills convinced Pierce to overrule subordi-
nates in favor of her clients.
"Over time, people ask me to help them get
all kinds of benefits and things like that and my
answer to them has always been the same thing,"
Pierce said. "It's been basically that we'll give
your request very careful consideration and if your
request suits all of our requirements, you'll have
a chance of getting what you're seeking."
The New York project was mentioned in a
1985 handwritten note to Pierce from the De-
partment of Commerce's assistant secretary for
productivity, technology and innovation, urging
HUD to back a proposed housing project in the
Morningside Heights area of Manhattan near
Columbia University.
At the bottom, in Pierce's handwriting, was
written: "To Debbie- Check into this and try to

get it through." It bears Pierce's initials, "SRP
The note to Pierce was addressed simply
"Sam," and signed "Bruce" on stationery of the
assistant secretary of commerce.
D. Bruce Merrifield, who held that Commerce
position at the time, could not be reached in calls
to his home, ore the American Electronics Asso-
ciation, where he is a consultant. The Commerce
official's note said he was familiar with the pro-
ject through his church, which had supported the
The $5.6 million, 99-unit senior-citizen hous-
ing project was granted $1.2 million in rental
subsidies, according to Francine Kellman,
spokesperson for the HUD regional office in New
Pierce's attorney, Paul Perito, said he had not
seen the letter to Pierce and was not familiar with
the project. But he said there was "nothing indis-
criminatory in that situation."

Inspections follow
boarding house fires

LANSING (AP) - Boarding
houses on historic Mackinac Island
will be inspected for fire and build-
ing code violations in the wake of
last month's blaze that killed two
people, Attorney General Frank Kel-
ley said yesterday.
Kelley said the inspections of fa-
cilities that house more than three
people will help restore public con-
fidence in the safety of the wooden
buildings at one of the state's top
tourist attractions.
"These buildings are some of the
oldest buildings in the state of
Michigan. We revere them and
honor them because of their historic
significance. We talk about the his-
torical figures who lived in them
and so on, but we are also asking
in 1989-90 young people to live in
these buildings which are many of
them (100 years) old,"he said.
The inspections are unconnected
to a criminal investigation being
conducted by Kelley's office into
the Sept. 9 fire that killed two
summer workers and destroyed four
businesses, Kelley said.
More than 50 buildings are
scheduled to be inspected for viola-
tions of the state building or fire

codes, said Lt. Thomas Endelman of
the fire marshal division of the
Michigan Department of State Po-
Violations likely to be uncovered
include blocked exits, combustible
materials in the hallways and smoke
detectors without batteries, he said,
adding those were found in the
building where the fire occurred.
Most of the establishments have
been inspected in the past, but Kel-
ley said the local government lacked
the resources to conduct the compre-
hensive inspection the old buildings
"The purpose of this inspection
and investigation is not to point fin-
gers. Nor is the purpose to place the
blame for past problems," he said.
About 80 percent of Mackinac Is-
land is a state park and Kelley said
that justifies the state role in the
The inspection teams will include
representatives from the fire marshal
division, Department of Labor, the
local fire and police departments, the
Michigan Fire Chiefs Association,
and the Michigan Fire Inspectors

Compiled from Associated Press and staff reports
Soviets guard food and fuel
shipments bound to Armenia
MOSCOW - Soviet troops guarded fuel and food shipments bound
for Armenia, cut off for more than two months by saboteurs in the neigh-
boring republic of Azerbaijan, reports said yesterday.
Azerbaijanis for more than two months have burned bridges and
blocked rail lines to stop the regular flow of supplies from reaching Ar-
menia. The blockades are reportedly an outgrowth of the dispute over
which republic should control the territory of Nagorno-Karabakh.
The blockade not only has resulted in chronic shortages of food and
fuel, it has also interrupted the flow of supplies to people affected by the
devastating Dec. 7 Armenian earthquake.
Armenia is at the southern border of the eastern Soviet Union and
much of the republic is bounded by Azerbaijan, through which 80 percent
of the supplies must pass.
Safety of Mackinac Bridge
investigated after accident
LANSING - The Mackinac Bridge may need higher guardrails and a
more sophisticated 'warning system to alert drivers to bad weather
conditions, the chairperson of the Senate committee said yesterday.
"I think it will make people crossing the bridge feel better," said Sen.
Richard Fessler, R-Union Lake and the chairperson of the Senate State
Affairs, Tourism and Transportation Committee.
The panel conducted a hearing into the recent accident, in which a
small car drove off the side of the bridge, drowning it's driver.
Meanwhile, a House committee went to the bridge itself for its own
investigation. The action came a day after the burial of Leslie Ann Pluhar
of Royal Oak, who drove off the span Sept. 22, the only vehicle ever to
plunge off the bridge.
Witnesses before the Senate committee generally said the bridge was
safe and in good shape, but noted it was opened in1957 when
construction standards were different.
Dalai Lama wins Nobel Prize
OSLO, Norway - The Dalai Lama, the spiritual and temporal leader
of Tibet whose title means Ocean of Mercy, won the 1989 Nobel Peace
Prize yesterday for decades of non-violent struggle to free his country from
"This prize may open more people's eyes to look at their own qual-
ity," said the Buddhist monk.
China called the award an insult and interference in its internal affairs.
"This has hurt the people's feelings. The Dalai Lama is not only a re-
ligious leader but also a political figure in exile, who carries out political
activity aimed a splitting the fatherland and undermining national unity,"
said Wang Guisheng of the Chinese Embassy in Oslo.
Egil Aarvik, chairperson of the Norwegian committee that awards the
Nobel Peace Prize, said the Buddhist leader was nominated in previous
years, "but events in the East, particularly in China in the last year, have
made Dalai Lama's candidacy more timely now than before."
Bush to have cyst surgery
WASHINGTON - President Bush will undergo surgery to remove a
cyst from the middle finger of his right hand, the White House said yes-
terday. Bush vowed to keep working despite "this awesome burden."
The president, making light of of the minor surgery, said there was no
need "to make a federal case out of it." Asked to raise the finger for a
photo, he replied, "Don't tempt me."
Presidential spokesperson Marlin Fitzwater said Bush would undergo
the procedure, expected to take about an hour, at Walter Reed Army Medi-
cal Center today.
He said the president, who is left-handed, would be given a local anes-
thetic called a digital nerve block and would remain awake throughout the
"The doctors' clinical observation indicates that the cyst is benign.
There will of course be a routine pathologic examination of the tissue,"
Fitzwater said.
What lurks behind a word?
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - "Bimbo," a word much in vogue in the
scandal-ridden '80s, was first used as a relatively sexless term for lacklus-
ter males of the Roaring Twenties. The slightly stuffy word "academy"
has a much racier past - a daring exploit involving a youthful Helen of

From "bunk," the unfortunate legacy of a long-winded congressperson,
to "zany" derived from the word for a 16th-century Italian clown, a new
book by dictionary publisher Merriam-Webster Inc. examines the strange
stories and forgotten figures lurking behind everyday words.
"This book was a little bit more fun to work on than usual things we
do here," said Frederick C. Mish, editorial director of Merriam-Webster.
"Webster's Word Histories," touted as a companion for "armchair ety-
mologists," is a departure from the dictionary publisher's generally sedate
By the way, Secretariat died Wednesday.
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Associated Press

Out in the cold
East German children huddle under blankets outside the West German
embassy as they wait for accommodations and petition for passage to
the West.


October 9th and 10th

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V' '
(Episcopal Church Chaplaincy)
218 N. Division (at Catherine)
Sunday Schedule
Holy Eucharist-5 p.m.
Preacher: The Rev. Susan McGarry
Celebrant: The Rev. Dr. Virginia Peacock
Supper and Discussion-6:00 p.m.
Call 665-0606
1432 Washtenaw Ave.
Sunday Worship at 9:30 & 11:00 a.m.
Campus Ministry
Innovative, informal communion services
Dinner following
Thurs., 5:30-6:15; Worship in Curtis Room
Faith Exploration, 6 week series:
Discuss videos of Christian & Jewish
theologians on critical faith questions
Sun., 9/24-10/29,9:30-11:00 a.m., French Rm.
Continental Breakfast Served
Info., 662-4466-Rev. Amy Morrison
Everyone Welcome!
801 South Forest at Hill Street
Sunday Worship at 10:00 a.m.
Wednesday: Bible Study at 6:30p.m.
Worship at 7:30 p.m.
Intern: Andy Rutrough, 668-7622
The Ann Arbor Society of Friends(Quakers)
is hosting a series of 3 panel-discussions
for those interested in learning about
Quakerism. The meetings will be held
7:00 -9:00 p.m. for the next 3 Sundays at the
Ann Arbor Friends Center, 1420 Hill.
Topics: The Bases of Quaker Belief (Oct.8),
Silent Worship (Oct.15),
Scial ,1Arfnn ((. )fla9?



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