The Michigan Daily - Monday, October 11, 1999 - 7A
Mouse approves HMO lawsuit bill
Former LSA dean
returns to classroom
WASHINGTON (AP) - The House approved a
sweeping bill meant to give patients a stronger
hand in dealing with their health insurance com-
panies, including a controversial new right to file
The final vote Thursday on the bill was 275-
51. Sixty-eight Republicans crossed party lines
vote with all but two Democrats.
The 16-member Michigan delegation was split
along party lines with all six Republicans voting
against the bill and the 10 Democrats voting for it.
The HMO bill, authored by Rep. John Dingell
(D-Mich.) and Rep. Charlie Norwood (R-Ga.)
would arm patients with a variety of new rights in
dealing with health insurance companies.
It would make it easier to go to an emergency
room or see a specialist and would give patients
the chance to take their complaints to independent
The biggest point of contention with the GOP
leadership, which did not endorse the bill, was a
provision to allow patients to sue an HMO in state
court over disputes about their care. Many
Republicans argued that would drive up the cost
"The biggest problem with the Norwood-Dingell
legislation is that it will likely result in more lawsuits,
more time spend in courts, more fees to trial lawyers
and, ultimately, higher costs for health care," said Rep.
Pete Hoekstra (R-Mich).
Rep. Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) countered:
"Can't we finally have enough courage to put
doctors and patients hack in control of their
health care rather than allowing insurance compa-
nies and HMOs to arbitrarily make decisions of
life and death?"
The bill goes to conference with the Senate, which
passed a bill that does not offer new rights to sue.
On Wednesday, Republicans pushed through a
bill, 227-205, aimed at reducing the ranks of the
uninsured, which now stand at 44 million.
The Michigan delegation was split along party
lines, with all six Republicans voting for it and
the 10 Democrats voting against it.
Democrats contended the GOP bill would do
little to solve the problem. "This bill does nothing
except to help the insurance companies and the
well-to-do and the healthy," Dingell said.
1935 g ft deed sets
uses for auditorium
Continued from Page IA
"I think higher
important," she Goldenberg
said, adding that
the issues facing the University today,
such as the two lawsuits challenging the
University's use of race as an admis-
sions factor, are "some of the issues
facing higher education in the nation."
According to the class description,
the course is designed, "to frame and
analyze the most critical issues facing
higher education in the United States
Although Goldenberg said she draws
upon her experience as an administrator
at the University, the class does not deal
only with campus issues.
"We draw upon a lot of examples
from U of M, but I try to place this
information into a larger context,"
Goldenberg said. The former dean
said she recognizes the special nature
of the University and takes care to call
attention to this uniqueness when
"The University is distinctive from
other state universities in that we enjoy
the advantage of constitutional autono-
my," Goldenberg said.
Constitutional autonomy, she
explained, allows the University more
freedom because it is not governed by
the state legislature but by the elected
University Board of Regents.
"We are given much more flexibility
than other state universities ... constitu-
tional autonomy is a system that is
looked upon by other state universities
with some envy' she said.
Some advantages of constitutional
autonomy, Goldenberg said, are the
University's freedom to set tuition levels
and its near immunity from constitu-
Constitutional autonomy exists at
Michigan State University and Wayne
State University as well.
LSA senior Diane Tider said she
feels fortunate to be in Goldenberg's
"Professor Goldenberg obviously
knows what she's talking about," Tider
said. "The class is a really interesting
insider's look at the University," she
From the class, Tider said she and her
classmates now understand how com-
plex the University really is.
"We've really realized that the
University involves every scope of life
... it's a living and working communi-
ty" Tider said.
In addition to being a University pro-
fessor, Goldenberg serves on the gov-
erning board for the Massachusetts
Institute of Technology, named the
"MIT Corporation" As an MIT gradu-
ate, she hopes she is "making some
As of now, Goldenberg said she is
pleased with the University and has no
plans to move on.
A boy carries his sisters through the mud left in the Mexican town of Xicotepec
de Juarez after floods devasted the town and surrounding areas last week .
eath tol rses to
Continued from Page 1A
the best price for its size;" Scalzo said.
The auditorium seats about 1,100 peo-
The restriction of Rackham's facilities
derives from its original deed of trust,
which was written in 1935 when the
school officially became the Horace H.
Rackham School of Graduate Studies.
"The deed left very specific instruc-
tions about what could and could not
happen in the Rackham building,"
explained Shannon Rice, facilities man-
ager of University Productions.
"Among others, there was not. to be
any worship services, undergraduate
activities or organizations, groups out-
side the University or theatrical perfor-
mances using Rackham facilities," she
Rackham Dean Earl Lewis said con-
fusion about the use of Rackham facil-
ities could have began several years
ago when the administration allowed
more undergraduate groups to perform
But Lewis said Rackham administra-
tors met with University Productions
officials last spring to explain that the
graduate school is bound by law to fol-
low the trust verbatim.
"The language of the deed is clear,
and we cannot violate a trust which has
existed for almost even decades," Lewis
said, although he expressed sympathy
for the undergraduate organizations.
"I know that competition for space
is pretty intense. I've been working
with (the Rackham Student
Government) to identify what com-
prises a graduate organization. We feel
that if there is preponderant number of
graduate students in an organization,
then they should qualify as a graduate
student organization," he said.
LSA sophomore Kym Stewart, a
member of the a cappella group Dicks
and Janes, hopes to compromise with
"I understand that they can't go
against what the donors requested, but
how black and white is that? We have a
grad student in our group, and we really
target and hit grad students to come. And
they do. This is a campus-wide event; we
do this for their entertainment too,"
She also suggested having a deadline
for graduate students to book their
events and then opening up any remain-
ing space for undergraduate use.
Lewis said he is open to compromise,
but it depends upon the suggestions.
"We certainly try to accommodate
everybody when and where it's possible,
but we have to follow the contract,' he
Stewart said that having to find alter-
native places to perform will financially
upset a cappella groups because other
venues either cost more to rent, seat less
people or both.
"We are already fundraising as it is,
and with expenses and tours, we
might just break even. If we had to
pay two or three times as much for a
venue that seats the same or less num-
ber of people, then we'd have to ask
the (Michigan Student Assembly's)
Budget and Planning Committee for
more money for all the a cappella
groups. BPC does not have this fund-
ing available," said Stewart, who is an
"It's a sticky situation," Rice said. "I
feel for the students but understand
where the dean is coming from"
LSA senior David Singer, a member
of the a cappella group Compulsive
Lyres, said that such separation of
undergraduate and graduate schools is
not conducive to a healthy learning envi-
"By allowing for all types of events,
graduate and undergraduate alike, every-
one can learn from each other and appre-
ciate the activities and talents of one
another," Singer said.
(AP) - Angry over sandbagging
that has swamped their neighbor-
hoods and furious that the govern-
.ment hasn't done more to help,
undreds of people in Tabasco's
ooded capital clashed yesterday
vwith police, who beat and arrested
many of them.
President Ernesto Zedillo, who has
called the flooding Mexico's worst
disaster in a decade, toured the strick-
en areas on Friday and Saturday and
pledged to send more civilian and
military personnel to help the victims
throughout states along the Gulf of
"We won't fail you," he promised
But in Villahermosa, a city of
465,000 people that is 400 miles east
of Mexico City, many weren't willing
to accept promises. Much of the city
has been under water for a week, and
the water was rising yesterday.
The death toll, according to offi-
cials in the affected states, stood at
Continued from Page IA
know if they will be able to pay for col-
lege before making the effort to apply.
Kelly said the service is geared toward
middle-income families, who often get
caught in the financial aid trap, where
studnts are "not affluent enough" to
attend the school of their choice, but "not
impoverished enough" to be eligible for
financial aid packages.
+ ;:he service has nearly 10 colleges and
universities signed up as members, Kelly
said,including both public, private, large
adxsmall academic institutions, and he
*aid "well over 200 students have bid
While eCollegebid has gained nation-
al attention in recent weeks, critics of the
bidding service - including Joyce
Smith, executive director of the National
"sociation for College Admissions
unseling - caution against students
limiting their higher education options
because of financial worries.
"What happened to the educational
part of the process?" Smith questioned,
adding that while she understands Kelly's
viewpoint of family empowerment,
eCollegebid "gives the wrong message
about the financial aid process.
"I'm concerned about students and
families who may be hurt in the process"
#ause they neglected to do any schol-
applications, Smith said.
She said she urges families who use
the service to also fill out the traditional
financial aid applications, too.
Smith added that a committee current-
ly is exploring whether eCollegebid is a
violation of the NACAC ethics code
because she said she believes students
should be accepted to college before
finding out about financial aid.
"Will you be basing your decision on
where to apply after knowing your finan-
cial situation?" she asked.
eCollegebid's Website states that fami-
lies who use the service have a responsi-
bility to fill out all necessary financial
aid forms, and Kelly emphasized that the
service does not gloss over admissions
procedures or factors in any way.
"It is not an attempt to get around
financial aid," he said. "It's not just
money. It's the whole package a student
has to offer the institution ... colleges
and students will be working from a
more definable outcome from the start."
LSA junior Abby Barefield said that
although money was not a deciding fac-
tor in her decision to attend the
University, "some people just have to set-
tle and go to the school they can afford"
- even if it isn't their first choice.
But Barefield said she doesn't think it
would necessarily limit a student's
options. "People can get opportunities
wherever they go," she said.
Continued from Page 1A
filled drama. Seven hospitals, including,
the University's and one fake hospital,
will treat the "victims" from the explo-
sion, which will be represented by
clouds of smoke and other distractions.
Sam Jessie, a University Hospitals
spokesperson, perceives the hospital's
role as learning how to better address
such an event should it occur in the
future. "I think it is always good to pre-
pare no matter what your field," she
Ann Arbor Fire Chief George
Markus does not minimize the proba-
bility an event like this could happen in
Ann Arbor. He said he has seen many
unusual things in his more than 20
years in the fire service that he believes
any scenario can happen or has hap-
pened somewhere in the fire service
Markus emphasized that for employ-
ees who must respond to emergencies
like bombings, the training could be
"Anytime you run a training drill,
whatever your job is, whether it's an
EMS worker, fire fighter or police offi-
cer, if you run the drill correctly and if
you are careful about the scenario, you
can have very effective training value,"
Cindy Matthews of the West Metro
Fire Department, located near Littleton,
Co., the site of the Columbine High
School shooting last spring, said the
training in Washtenaw County is a good
way to prepare for real situations.
"I think trainings and drills and
things like that are set up to give an
opportunity to practice what you hope
will never happen," Matthews said.
Matthews said her fire department
responded to the initial diversionary
bomb in the April 20 assault at
Columbine High School. That day, two
students, Dylan Klebold and Eric
Harris, killed 12 fellow students and
one teacher before taking their own
lives, making it the deadliest high
school shooting in U.S. history.
Matthews applauded Washtenaw
County for having the foresight to pre-
pare for a similar incident. "It's a solu-
tion," she said.
The mock bomb will be ignited
around 2:30 p.m. tomorrow. High
school personnel throughout the area
are encouraged to observe the event.
Some high school students will video-
tape the scenario.
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