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October 03, 2002 - Image 1

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2002-10-03

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October 3, 2002
02002 The Michigan Daily
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Vol. CXIII, No. 23

One-hundred-twelve years ofeditornalfreedom

Partly sunny
with thupder-
storms in the
morning, show-
ers continuing
into the after-
noon and



central to
By Tomslav Ladika
Daily Staff Reporter
Having spent years negotiating con-
struction contracts and serving mem-
bers of a trade union, Greg Stephens
says he will provide the University with
a unique insight into controlling tuition
costs if he is elected to one of two seats
on the Board of Regents.
Members of the Board of Regents
have to approve all construction proj-
ects, and by improving the efficiency of
the construction process at the Universi-
ty, Stephens says more money will be
freed for other budgetary concerns.
Stephens, a
Democrat from
Saline, is a busi-
ness manager and
financial secretary
of the Internation-
al Brotherhood of
Electrical Workers
Local 252. His
Stephens include negotiat-
ing construction contracts and benefits
for more than 900 members of the
"From my 32 years from working in
the construction industry ... I believe
that I can add another perspective to the
board that is currently not there,"
Stephens said.
Stephens' experience helps him
understand the overall construction
process and the challenges builders face
in Ann Arbor, he said. Construction
managers and workers have to jump
through many hoops that make con-
struction work at the University diffi-
cult, Stephens said, but added that he
could not explain the specific details of
these obstructions.
Stephens said as the only board can-
didate from a labor background, he will
use his expertise to make the building
process easier for construction compa-
nies and cheaper for the University. "It
will lead to lower construction costs and
we can use those savings for tuition,"
Stephens said. "The money we're get-
ting out of Lansing is not enough."
Stephens pointed to an instance when
the University had to pay extra fees due
to miscommunication. The regents
approved a plan last winter to remodel
the President's House, Stephens said.
But somewhere along the process some-
one arbitrarily removed the gas service
from the plan, resulting in a gas stove

Thieves likely
to target area
near campus

By Maria Sprow
Daily Staff Reporter
LSA junior Erin Harleton was hang-
ing out with her roommates and
friends at her house a week ago Mon-
day night. The doors were unlocked,
the lights were on and the television's
volume was turned up.
It was 10 p.m. and pretty clear that
somebody was home, but that didn't
deter two thieves from climbing in
through an open first-floor window,
grabbing Harleton's purse and jumping
back out again.
"My housemate and I came down-
stairs and we were in the living room
outside my bedroom and the light was
on and the (bedroom's) door was open.
We saw there was movement, and we
thought it was one of my roommates at
first so we just were casually like,
'Hey, what's up, what's going on,"'
said Harleton, who lives in a nine-per-
son home on Thompson Street. "The
next thing that happened was (my
roommate) saw my purse fly out the
Harleton said that though she never
got a glimpse at the strangers who
entered her room that night, her room-
mate saw two people running away
from the home, but it was from a dis-
tance and no clear description could be
"There were easily four or five peo-
ple in the house at the time. It was just
for a moment, during a 10-minute

span, nobody was downstairs," she
said. "It's scary that someone would
come into your house while someone
was home."
Luckily, Harleton's thieves didn't get
away with much - while they grabbed
her purse, they didn't have the chance
to take her cell phone and other valu-
Harleton is not the only student on
campus to share the experience of hav-
ing a stranger in his or her home
unknowingly. All around campus, stu-
dents are reporting break-ins and
Engineering junior Jason Conn's
house was robbed last month. Conn,
who lives on Walnut Street, said he
believes the house was targeted
because the living room windows offer
a clear view of the house's contents.
The front door to his house was
unlocked at the time, allowing the
robbers to come in quietly. They
slipped away five or 10 minutes after
entering, disappearing with an Xbox,
DVD player, a backpack and some
DVDs, Conn said.
"There are now holes in our enter-
tainment center, where there used to
be electronics," Conn said, adding
that he and his housemates have
changed their security measures. "It's
kind of a pain now. We keep the door
locked all the time. We try tokeep
the shades down at night. It's just a
See BREAK-INS, Page 7A

Houses in residential areas largely populated by students have become the targets of burglaries and thefts, due to the lack of
security and awareness in those areas.

Former A2 mayor vies for senate seat

By Louie Melzlish
Daily Staff Reporter
Two years after being term-limited out of the
Michigan House of Representatives, Liz Brater
wants to get back into state government.
But the coast is not clear for her swearing-in as
the new 18th District state senator, since the for-
mer Ann Arbor mayor and six-year former law-
maker faces a Republican opponent who says
government will be closer to the people if his
grassroots campaign prevails.
"We have a lot of problems with the state budg-
et and we need people with experience to deal
with them," Brater said during a recent interview.
Projections from the Citizens Research Council of
Michigan predict a deficit of $600 to $700 million
in the budgets for the next two fiscal years.

Brater is just one of many House veterans seek-
ing election to the Senate. At least 20 of the 38
Senate races feature a pres-
ent or former House mem-
ber. Brater faced hurdles just
getting to this point, handily
defeating incumbent Rep.~
John Hansen of Dexter in
the Aug. 6 Democratic pri-
mary for the Senate seat. MICHIGAN
But Brater's opponent, U
Scio Township Trustee Gor- ELECTIONS
don Darr, is treating the race
as competitive although the2
district has more Democrats'
than Republicans. Currently Republicans control
23 of the 38 seats in the Senate.
"She has a strong connection with a number of
)leman talks

key Democratic constituencies," Darr said of
Brater, whose endorsements include the Michigan
State AFL-CIO and the United Auto Workers.
"But for this seat here you really want to build
those bridges to be able to work with those people
in Chelsea and Dexter." For his part, Darr, a for-
mer Dexter Village councilman, has the endorse-
ment of the National Rifle Association.
The 18th District seat being vacated by term-
limited Democratic Sen. Alma Wheeler Smith is
in the shape of a hook that begins in western
Washtenaw County, taking in Sharon and Free-
dom townships, then spanning across all of north-
ern Washtenaw - encompassing Ann Arbor and
Ann Arbor Township - then diving along its
eastern edge to include Ypsilanti, Ypsilanti Town-
ship and Augusta Township.
Among the issues on which the two differ:

Brater supports abortion rights, while Darr oppos-
es abortion except in the cases of rape, incest or
danger to the mother's life. She opposes vouchers
for private school tuition, while Darr is generally
supportive of them.
Darr noted that he has forsworn heavy fundrais-
ing. For this race, he requested a financial report-
ing waiver from the Michigan secretary of state,
for he intends to raise and spend less,than $1,000
in his bid for the seat.
Darr said his first priority if elected is to push
through the Legislature a bill establishing public
financing for all campaigns for state offices. Cur-
rently, only gubernatorial candidates receive
matching funds from the state.
"If a Republican from the Ann Arbor area is in
the state Senate pushing clean elections I think
See SENATE, Page 3A

'U' in first fireside chat

Ann Arbor resident Henry Herskovitz shares his views about the conflict between
Israel and the Palestinians and his experiences as an American Jew.
SAFE event offers
Jews perspectives

By Tyler Boersen
Daily Staff Reporter
Getting to know the students at the University
is a priority for University President Mary Sue
Coleman as she kicked off her first in a series of
fireside chats yesterday, allowing her to gain the
student perspectives and giving students the
opportunity to meet her.
Questions for Coleman varied widely from
diversity on campus to the availability of office
hours for professors. But she used the event to
survey what issues are on the minds of students
- turning questions for her into questions for the
students and asking for their opinions.
"These are all things that I can put in my brain
and ask questions about. If they are on student
minds I need to know about it," she said.
In answering questions she highlighted her ini-

tial goals, including making sure the Life Sci-
ences Institute is running smoothly. She said the
Institute was floundering when she first arrived
so she moved quickly to appoint Alan Saltiel as
director of the Institute.
Coleman said she hopes the LSI will
increase opportunities for undergraduates to
help in research endeavors, though she said the
University currently offers many other
research opportunities.
Participants expressed concern for student
safety and campus security. She said new elec-
tronic locks will be installed on residence hall
room doors and public safety is keeping closer
watch on the residence halls.
When one participant asked about the stairwells
of Dennison Hall, on which she saw another stu-
dent trip because of loose tiles, Coleman promised

DA'VIDJ rv'IL/ Dally
University President Mary Sue Coleman talks with students
during a fireside chat yesterday in the Michigan Union.

By Jeremy Berkowitz
Daily Staff Reporter
Rachel Persico, a foreign student
advisor in the University's Interna-
tional Center, said that growing up in
Israel she believed many myths about
how Israel was one empty but rightly
belonged to the Jews.
"A land with no people for a people
with no land,", Persico said. "This is
what we were brought up on."
Persico said it was only later she
learned the storv about the "ethnic

Palestinians were nomads who wan-
dered outside of the borders of Israel
and wanted to throw all Jewish people
into the sea.
"I learned that between '47 and '49,
Israel systematically expelled the
majority of Palestinians, 850,000 of
them," she said. "They left everything
behind when the war broke out."
Last night, Persico and Ann Arbor
resident Henry Herskovitz were part
of a presentation called "A Jewish
Perspective: From Israel to America,"
sponsored by Students Allied for

Role of religion shifts for students 1n college

By Shamalla S. Khan
For the Daily
LSA freshman Karl Seibert recalls
his "religious involvement as a Catholic
high schooler was very prominent."
Yet, as a University student he says
religion does not play the same role it
used to. "My beliefs have definitely not
changed; but my involvement has

find the time to accommodate both reli-
gious practices and studying.
"I feel naked without my religion,"
said LSA junior Katty Pernick. "It's
very difficult and sometimes one has to
make some very hard choices - do I
take three hours to go to the synagogue
and go through the service or do I
According to Rabbi Aharon Gold-

ation. "Some people are more active at
the beginning of the year, but as the
workload increases, student participa-
tion becomes less frequent. On the other
hand, when things get difficult, that is
when students come."
While students may not make time to
observe their religious practices as elab-
orately as they did with their families,
most try to observe them nonetheless.

Kavita Bhavsar said.
Many students feel the need to spend
the time to observe their religious prac-
tices regardless of their busy schedule.
"It is a good way to prioritize things
in your life. It also keeps things in per-
spective when it gets stressful," Rack-
ham student Maggie Lassack said.
St. Mary's campus minister Nikki
Smith has seen a steady rise in the

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