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April 05, 2000 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 2000-04-05

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LOCAL/ TATE

The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, April 5, 2000 - 3

IGHER ED

'

team presents State St. suggestions

U. Mass. town
votes in favor of
legalizing pot
Amherst, Mass., which houses a
campus of the University of Massa-
chusetts, passed a non-binding refer-
eridum last week that opposes all
federal and state bans on marijuana.
The proposal encourages state and
federal legislatures to overturn laws
forbidding marijuana.
A city clerk said the voting results
from two precincts located on campus
was 192 to seven in favor of the pro-
al. The overall results were 1,659
to 981 in favor of the proposal. About
20 percent of registered voters partici-
pated in the lections,
The Cannabis Reform Coalition at
the university went door to door
telling people about the issue. Group
president Vern Coffey said the issue
passed at all of the city's 12 precincts.
Amherst also houses Amherst Col-
e and Hampshire College.
offey said the group plans on e-
mailing various lawmakers about the
referendum's results.
Iowa House votes
to cut spending
Students from Iowa State Universi-
4,y; University of Iowa and the Univer-
sity of Northern Iowa protested
budget cuts last week at the state
*pitol, in Des Moines.
caring shirts that read "It takes
common cents to support higher edu-
cation," students rallied to express
their disapproval of the S13.8 million
budget cuts made by the Iowa House
of Representatives.
The bill, which now goes to the
Iowa Senate, passed 55-41 March 29.
University of Iowa's student govern-
ent president-elect Andy Stoll said
cuts may encourage state residents
to attend universities outside of Iowa.
OSU trade, Service
union approves
possible strike
The union representing Ohio State
University's janitors, electricians and
other trade and service workers voted
week to strike if their demands are
ret met by the university by the end of
April. The Communications Workers
of America Local 4501 want a two
dollar an hour wage increase and
more chances for job advancement.
Ninety-two percent of the union's
membership voted in favor of the pos-
sible strike. The union said 25 percent
of its members make less than eight
d Ilar an hour. It also claimed some of
Iworkers face safety risks such as
touching biohazardous material at the
university's hospitals.
OSU spokeswoman Elizabeth Con-
slick said the union's contract with the
university ended last Friday but nego-
tiatons are continuing. The next
meeting is scheduled for April 11.
Conslick said the union's wage
demands are one of the main points of
disagreement between the two parties.
Pike Website pulls
A pril fools'. prank
Members of Duke University's
News Service joined the spirit of
April Fools' Day by honoring "The
King." People logging onto the site
Saturday were welcomed with images
of Elvis Presley superimposed into
regular web site photos. Elvis photo

tings included the inauguration of
ke president Nan Keohane and a
field hockey game.
The Duke Basketball Report also
presented a holiday prank. The pri-
vately run Website reported that a
popular tent area outside the men's
basketball stadium was being shut
down by the Environmental Protection
Agency.
The co-director of the Website said
some people thought that the EPA cre-
aw the prank and that the Website
was fooled.
- Comnpiled 1v Daily Staff Reporter
Robert Gold.

By Jon Zemke
Daily Staff Reporter
In a step forward in city and University rela-
tions, faculty and students presented their recom-
mendations, for the State Street Development
Project yesterday to a predominantly satisfied
audience of city officials and residents.
The foremost of those recommendations
would make the one-way streets around the Nick-
els Arcade - State Street, Liberty Street and
Maynard Street - into two-way streets and
revamp the area.
"The reception from both city officials, mer-
chants, residents as well as University officials was
enthusiastic," said Lawrence Molnar, industrial
development research program manager at the
Business School. "Special attention was paid to the
collaboration between the city and the University. It
was a real positive step in town-gown relations."

The project team, made up of several University
faculty members and students under contract with
the Downtown Development Authority, presented
their findings after two years of research and stud-
ies on the State Street block adjacent to Central
Campus. The next step for the project is receiving
approval from the Ann Arbor City Council
Among the suggestions the project team made
was the overall beautification of State Street.
Repairing cracked sidewalks, installing new lamp-
posts that combine meters and bike-racks, and
attracting more businesses to the some of the
vacant buildings in the area topped the suggestions.
"For a stranger coming into town and looking
at the vacant buildings, it looks like the area is on
the way down, not on the way up," said project
team member and Architecture and Urban Plan-
ning Prof. Robert Beckley. "It's a lot like the
glass is half empty and not half full,"
The project team emphasized that the key to

attracting business to fill the empty spaces in the
State Street area is to capitalize on the popular
entertainment business and the thousands of peo-
ple who spend money in the area. Molnar men-
tioned the more than 8,000 entertainment seats
available at local venues such as the State The-
ater, the Michigan Theater and the Power Center
as a draw for new business.
But in order to capitalize on the potential, the
team recommended improving the signage to
area parking structures, President of the State
Street Area Association and DDA member Karl
Pohrt said he expects new signs to be posted in
the next month.
Pohrt, who owns Shaman Drum Bookshop,
said he endorsed all of the recommendations,
including the suggestion that local merchants
clean up their store fronts and keep them lit, even
if they're not open.
"It was an absolutely first-rate analysis about the

strengths and weakness of the area,' Pohrt said,
"Where we go from here is up to the community."
City Councilwoman Jean Carlberg (D-Ward
III) said the major construction changes could
happen as soon as two years down the road,
depending on DDA's decision. DDA member
Leah Gunn confirmed that the major recommen-
dations, such as the switch to two-way streets and
sidewalk construction, could be acted on within
two to five years.
"It depends on what the DDA, number one,
decides to do, and number two has the money
for," Gunn said.
The DDA has already pledged $1.5 million
toward redeveloping the State Street area, but Pohrt
said the actual cost could run as high as $10 mil-
lion.
"It sounds like a huge amount of money ($1.5
million), but it's not," Pohrt said. "Especially when
you're making changes to an urban neighborhood:.

I -- 1

Mich. census response rate
fighting for top in nation

N

By Hanna LoPatin
Daily Staff Reporter
Since the completed Census 2000
forms were due last Saturday, Michi-
gan has been battling it out with
Nebraska, Ohio and Iowa to be number
one in the country in response rates.
As of yesterday, Michigan was run-
ning third with 60 percent behind
Nebraska and lowa tied with 61 per-
cent, and Ohio with 62 percent.
"1'm pleased," said Michigan
Department of Budget and Manage-
ment spokeswoman Kelly Chesney.
"But there are some areas throughout
the state where we need to encourage
participation."
The high response rates are largely
concentrated in Southeastern Michigan
with Gratiot County leading the way at
85.7 percent.
Sixty-two percent of Washtenaw
County residents responded as well as
63 percent of Ann Arbor residents -
both figures well above the national
average of 55 percent.
Between 30 percent and 50 percent
of Northern Michigan and the upper
peninsula residents responded. Lake
County is at a low of 30 percent. Ches-

ney attributes the low response in the
north to the sprawling population in
rural areas.
"Some questionnaires got out to the
U.P area slower than they did" to the
suburbs and cities, she said.
Chesney said Michigan's response
rate is "one of the best in the nation,
but we at the state feel we can do much
better than that."
Michigan has set its response rate
goal at 77 percent. "We anticipate
meeting that goal and are optimistic,
she said.
Local Census Office Manager Patty
Van Buren Craig said Michigan's suc-
cess is not by accident. "People here
are knowledgeable," she said. "They've
come to understand that the census
bureau is our link to getting our money
back.'
Plus, she said, Michigan lost two
Congressional seats in the 1990 Cen-
sus and are cautious about it this time
around.
Although the deadline for the census
was April 1, Chesney said they will
accept forms until April 15 when they
will begin door-to-door questioning of
non-respondents. But Craig said April
I is the deadline for counting people.

"We don't count a baby born April
2' she said.
But mailing census forms are not the
only way the Census Bureau gets its'
information. Craig said they are cur-
rently working on their group quarters
enumeration by going to nursin
homes and other group residencies.
"Dorms are included in that count,' she
said.
Chesney said that in Lansing, Cen-
sus crews are working late at night to
encourage the homeless to fill out a
census. "They looked under bridges,
in doorjambs, trying to count as many
as possible," she said. "People have
been very cooperative in the Lansing
area."
Kinesiology junior Adam Adkins
said he doesn't know if the census sent
to his house was filled out because he
doesn't look at the mail.
But if he had seen the census,
Adkins said he would fill it out
"because I'm interested where our
money goes."
Students can get involved in the
Census by being a field worker during
the summer. Craig said she is hiring'
1,000 people to work - and so far
they have 408.

SAM HOLLENSHEAD/Daily
LSA senior Jamie Katz, who was selected as the student commencement
speaker, reads poetry to an audience last night in the English Department
Conference Room.
S tent g uatn

By Jeannie Baumann
Daily Staff Reporter
LSA senior Jamie Katz will not
be sitting with her fellow class-
mates during the University's com-
mencement ceremony later this
month. Instead, she will sit in the
middle of the Michigan Stadium
football field to deliver the student
speech.
Katz said she is honored and excit-
ed about being selected as the student
speaker at this year's commence-
ment.
"It will be quite a memorable
experience," she said.
A committee of faculty and stu-
dents selected Katz from 19 appli-
cations. Aside from a written
version of the speech, each student
had to submit a verbal presentation
on an audio cassette. Applicants'
names were removed from the
speech to avoid bias during the
selection process.
Economics Prof. Jim Adams,
who served on the selection com-
mittee, said the committee had three
basic criteria in selecting the stu-
dent speaker.+
"Everyone was probably looking ;
for a speech that related to a broad
range of students, one that was
inspiring to a large number of peo-
ple, and also one that read well or
listened to well," he said.
Adams said Katz's speech best
incorporated these three points.
"The speech that will be deliv-
ered is a wonderful speech," he +
said. "It was very inspiring to me."
But Adams noted that the high
quality of speeches made the selec-
tion process difficult.+
"There were several excellent
speeches in the group. But there can
only be one student speaker," he said.
"The people who wrote them should .

not feel diminished in any way."
Since the applications were due
just after Spring Break, Katz said
she felt a little bit rushed in turn-
ing in her speech. Nevertheless,
the theme focuses on an idea Katz
said she has had for "a little
while."
"The speech is about how the
University is a great place for
change, and it's really wonderful
thing that we have here," Katz said.
"Every single day here, there's that
potential for change."
Katz said the combination of an
academic environment, extracurric-
ular activities and the University
campus have cultivated the possibil-
ity for change.
"I don't think there are many
places like this," she said.
Katz, who is an English and cre-
ative writing concentrator, said she
spent most of her extracurricular
activities in community service work.
"I spent a lot of time at the
domestichviolence project Safe-
house," she said, adding that she has
also volunteered for the Sexual
Assault Prevention and Awareness
Center and worked on the Hillel's
annual Holocaust Conference.
"I'm more excited than nervous,"
she said.
The University-wide commence-
ment ceremony is scheduled for
April 29.
The Rackham Executive Commit-
tee selected Steven Johnson as the
student speaker for the graduate
commencement ceremonies planned
for April 28 in Hill Auditorium.
"Steve was far and away, we felt,
the best candidate," Rackham Stu-
dent Government President Damon
Fairfield said.
Fairfield said Johnson will be the
first graduate student to deliver
such a speech.

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