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February 02, 2006 - Image 1

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2006-02-02

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Thursday, February 2, 2006

Opinion 5A

The dispute over

Arts 8A Student-written
play premieres
this weekend

One-/rnndredfifteen years of edzton'alfreedom

Sports 10A

Cagers win
fifth in a row



Ann Arbor, Michigan

Vol. CXVI, No. 67

@2006 The Michigan Daily


House slashes
student aid

Cuts to student-loan
funding will make loans
more expensive
By Gabe Nelson
Daily Staff Reporter
Going to go college just got more expensive.
By a 216-214 vote, the House of Representa-
tives passed a bill cutting about $40 billion from
the federal government. The bill includes a $12.7-
billion cut to federal student-loan funding.
The House approved the budget for the fiscal
year 2006, joining the Senate, which approved it
on Dec. 21.
The cuts will make student loans more expen-
sive for the nearly 10 million students receiving
loans and grants each year. This includes 240,181
students in the state of Michigan. Their parents
and the lending companies will also be affected
by the cuts.
"In the face of stagnant state and federal support
for student aid, middle-class families increasingly
rely on student loans to finance their children's
education'" the State Public Interest Research
Groups said in a press release.
The bill raises the interest rate for parent loans
from 79 to 8.5 percent, netting about $2 billion in
savings for the government. It also requires lend-
ers to pay the government an additional 1-percent
fee - twice the previous fee - on each loan.
Either loan companies will assume the extra cost
or students and their parents will have to pay it.

The budget cuts are part of a resolution trim-
ming $39 billion from student aid, Medicare and
Medicaid programs over five years. One such cut
includes the cancellation of $2.2 billion in funding
earmarked for the administration and distribution
of student loans and grants.
U.S. Rep. Joe Schwarz (R-Battle Creek), who
is also president of the University's alumni asso-
ciation, voted in favor of the cuts.
"Congressman Schwarz has a very good record
of supporting higher education, but I'm very dis-
appointed with his vote on the budget cuts," said
Jesse Levine, Michigan Student Assembly presi-
Schwarz helped cap the student-loan interest
rate at 6.8 percent, Levine said.
"Today the House of Representatives com-
pleted the largest raid on student aid in history,"
said Luke Swarthout, State PIRG Higher Educa-
tion Associate, in a written statement. "At a time
when college costs continue to rise and students
are going deeper into a financial hole, Congress
has mistakenly decided to use students and fami-
lies to pay for other priorities."
The money saved will go toward tax cuts.
To help pay for the tax cuts, the government
will retain about $13 billion from overpayments
on student loans over the next five years.
"Some public officials think the public wants
tax cuts, but I think the population really wants
good education and access to education," Levine
said. "I think people are going to figure out this
era of tax cuts is hurting the country, it's keeping
See CUTS, page 7A

Michigan men's gymnastics freshmen Jamie Thompson (red power ranger) and Scott Bregman (blue power ranger) attempt to morph into their
Zords during the Mock Rock charity event for C.S. Mott Children's Hospital at Hill Auditorium yesterday.

A2 transformed into Super City

Football recruiting
class 13th in nation

City one of eight in state
officially sharing Super Bowl
host duties with Detroit
By Ian Herbert
Daily Sports Writer
When Mary Kerr, president of the Ann
Arbor Convention and Visitor's Bureau, sat
down with the Super Bowl planning committee
in Detroit in 2004, she had a decision to make.
Detroit's mayor and president of the Chamber
of Commerce asked Kerr whether Ann Arbor

was interested in being a
"Super City" for Super Bowl
XL, which will be played
next Sunday in Detroit.
"We immediately said,
'Why not?' " Kerr said. "We
knew going into it that we
wanted to have a lot of com-
munity support."
But it wasn't just commu-
nity support that Kerr was
interested in.

, .w. Ti -t w a-.e
.. '
.a . a .

guests at the Super Bowl are top decision-mak-
ers in their companies, and the bureau wanted
to show off what Ann Arbor has to offer.
In the Super Bowl guide that will be in hotel
rooms around the region, there is a four-page
advertisement emphasizing the city's high-tech
possibilities and successful technical compa-
nies such as Pfizer.
"We felt this was a great opportunity to have
a long-term impact and develop an image of
Ann Arbor as a high-tech city - and also for
its quality of life," Kerr said.
Kerr said when Ann Arbor was selected as a
Suner Citv. she talked with people in Houston
and Jacksonville - the sites
of the last two Super Bowls.
Both areas saw tremendous
growth after the game, she said.
I gg "Now, we're not the host
city," she said. "But we're hop-
ing it will spill over."
Dana Jones, vice president
el Week of tourism at the Putnam
rage County Chamber of Com-
merce, just 60 miles from
Jacksonville, said the impact
to the Putnam County economy has certainly
been noticeable. One of the events they put on
last year was a VIP bass fishing tournament
with NFL celebrities - an event that brought
an estimated $500,000 to the local economy.
The county is holding the second annual event
this weekend, and Jones expects the economic

impact to again be similar.
Jones said she has noticed a large increase
in the number of people looking to buy or rent
property in the area.
"People didn't realize what we had to offer
until they came to the Super Bowl," Jones said.
Kerr and the bureau are hoping that peo-
ple will similarly be impressed with what
Ann Arbor has to offer, whether it be res-
taurants, college sports or a high-tech hub
for companies.
In all, southeastern Michigan has eight Super
Cities. The title requires cities to guarantee a
certain number of hotel rooms and to provide
entertainment for guests.
There are three criteria for being named a
Super City: a vibrant downtown, a concentra-
tion of hotels and a proven track record of host-
ing events. Kerr said Ann Arbor has all three,
and she wants visitors to enjoy the restaurants
and nightlife available downtown.
In addition to general nightlife at local res-
taurants and bars, the bureau has planned a
handful of events to make the stay in Ann
Arbor more rewarding for Super Bowl guests.
It worked with the University's athletic depart-
ment to organize tours of Michigan Stadium
and planned an ice-carving competition.
The bureau organized a "Blues Cruise"
around downtown bars and a "Cappuccino
Crawl" as well. Probably the most visible activ-
ity is "Pigskins on Parade" - 12 giant, painted
footballs displayed around the city.

By Nate Sandals
Daily Sports Writer
For those fans who treat Michigan football as a
year-round obsession, yesterday marked the most
exciting day of the off-season.
Michigan signed 19 high school seniors to bind-
ing letters of intent to play at Michigan yesterday,
the first day of the signing period.
According to Rivals.com, Michigan had the
year's 13th best recruiting class. The University of
Southern California ranked first with 23 players.
Big Ten rival Penn State was sixth and Ohio State
was 12th.
The recruiting class includes four Scout.com
five-star prospects.
One of those top-rated players is Jonas Mouton,
a defensive back from Los Angeles. Mouton, who
visited campus for the Notre Dame game last Sep-
tember, did not inform head coach Lloyd Carr of
his decision until two days ago.
"That was the longest recruiting process I have
ever gone through with a guy," Carr said.
The coach, who visited Mouton and his family
in early January, said he had expected Mouton to
make a decision earlier but understood the pres-
sures he faced from other top schools. Southern
Cal and Texas both heavily recruited Mouton.
He is one a few freshmen Carr thinks might
have the chance to get on the field next fall. Two

other players whom Carr mentioned as potential
early contributors are the two recruits who have
already enrolled in classes at the University -
offensive lineman Justin Boren and running back
Carlos Brown.
"The fact that they're here for the spring, I think,
is a great advantage," Carr said.
Steve Schilling, a top prospect from Bellevue,
Wash., will join Boren on the offensive line. The
coaches expected to have a hard time getting
Schilling to come to Michigan because his parents
and siblings attended or attend the University of
Carr was quick to point out that his current
players were the most critical part of the recruiting
process. Mike Hart was particularly helpful of his
vibrant personality, Carr said.
As usual, the coaches looked close to home
when possible to fill the team's needs. Detroit native
Brandon Graham, a highly touted linebacker, was
one of the first recruits to commit. The class also
includes Quintin Woods and Quintin Patilla, both
from Flint, and Obinna Ezeh of Grand Rapids.
Michigan signed only one quarterback, States-
boro, Ga. native David Cone. The coaches looked
at other quarterbacks but decided not to sign any
others. It is hard to recruit with a young starting
quarterback as talented as Chad Henne atop the
See RECRUITS, page 7A

Super Born

The Super Bowl brings a lot of business to
local restaurants and bars, but Kerr was more
interested in long-term benefits. She worked
with Dennis Doyle, marketing and sales direc-
tor at the bureau as well as local corporations
to make an advertisement of Ann Arbor's tech-
nological side. According to Kerr, 65 percent of

'U' to switch
to fair-trade
By Carissa Miller
Daily Staff Reporter
A month after suspending its contracts with soft-
drink giant Coca-Cola, the University has set its
sights on the environmental and economic implica-
tions on another caffeinated beverage: coffee.
On Feb. 15, students will find a new coffee in
University dining halls.
Residential Dining Services plans to replace the
current coffee with an organic, fair-trade blend.
The decision is the result of a two-year cam-
paign led by the Environmental Justice Group, a
student organization that works to solve environ-
mental problems that disproportionately affect
-inr;nm rnm-mn;ti

Group proposes new
voting system in A2

Instant-runoff voting
would democratize
process, supporters say
By Bo He
Daily StaffReporter
Expensive elections. Poor voter turnout.
Winners with low vote totals.
A remedy for these problems could lie in
instant-runoff voting, according to the Ann
Arbor Fair Vote Coalition, which wants to
implement the system in Ann Arbor.
Almost every election held in the United
States is conducted with a plurality, or two-
round runoff, voting system. This means
that the candidate with the most votes wins,
majority or no majority.
But, if. a local group has its way, this
nrocess could be nearing extinction - at

Using IRV, a voter ranks preferred candi-
dates in numerical order. Voters can list as
many or as few candidates as they want as
their first choice, second choice, and so on.
If one candidate receives a majority of
first-choice votes, that candidate is elected
immediately, and the election is finished.
If no one receives a majority, the candi-
dates with the fewest first choice-votes are
eliminated. The next highest choice on the
eliminated ballots is counted instead of the
first choice. In effect, the IRV process works
similarly to a series of runoff elections. The
field of candidates is ultimately reduced to
two finalists, and the winner more likely to
be the preference of the majority.
Elections for members of the Australian
Legislature, the president of the Republic of
Ireland and the mayor of London use IRV. In
the United States, various municipal and non-
governmental institutions have adopted it.

ISA freshman Don Hickman samples fair-trade coffee in Mary Markley Residence Hail yesterday. The


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