The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Wednesday, October 31, 2007 - 7A a
caseworkers would be hired
- some at private agencies and
some with the government.
Sen. Bill Hardiman (R-Kent-
wood) also said money saved
by privatizing more juvenile
justice services could be used
to add state workers in local
welfare offices, where he said
staff-to-client ratios are as high
as 500 to one.
"That's way too high to do
real social work," Hardiman
Legislators and the Demo-
cratic governor have until
midnight tonight to pass and
then sign budget bills to avoid
another partial government
shutdown such as the one that
occurred in the early hours of
Oct. L Fourteen of 17 budget
bills had been sent to Granholm
as of yesterday evening.
The Legislature adjourned
until 12:30 a.m. while waiting
for the DHS bill to be printed.
The House and Senate then
plan to pass two remainingbills
- finishingtheir work on abud-
get that already has extended
a month past the normal dead-
Under other bills sent to
Granholm, K-12 public schools
would get an average increase
of 1 percent in per-pupil aid,
with poorer districts receiv-
ing more for each student than
Other bills would give 1 per-
cent more to universities and
community colleges and fund
departments overseeing state
parks, prisons, courts, agricul-
ture and the environment.
The budget also separates
funding for the University of
Michigan at Ann Arbor, Wayne
State University and Michigan
State University from the other
public universities in the state.
The budget assumes that
environmental permit fees
paid by businesses and hunt-
ing and fishing license fees will
be raised, but gives lawmak-
ers until Jan. 15 to approve the
increases. Votes for higher fees
could fail, though, as some leg-
islators are skittish about rais-
ing fees after approving general
tax increases q month ago.
Officials in the DNR and
Department of Environmen-
tal Quality say they will have
to lay off workers and cut ser-
vices if the fee increases aren't
approved. That could lead to
closing state parks and turning
over environmental permitting
to the federal government.
Negdtiators also worked out a
compromise on funding a study
to build another international
bridge from Detroit to Canada
across the Detroit River. The
study would continue but not
bind the state to its findings.
Republicans want to let the
private owner of the Ambassa-
dor Bridge build a second span,
but the Canadian government
and others oppose the idea and
favor a publicly funded bridge
in a different location than the
Legislators and Granholm
had disagreed over putting DHS
functions into private hands;
some already are handled by
private agencies. Republicans
said money can he saved hy
turning more work over to pri-
vate agencies, something labor
unions representing state work-
ers dispute. Some Democrats
R argued that children may not
be as safe, though others called
that a mischaracterization.
United Auto Workers Local
6000 President Sandra Parker,
whose union represents many
DHS employees, said turning
the department's responsibili-
ties over to private providers
wouldn't save money because
the state still would have to
supervise the children being
adopted or those in foster care
or juvenile justice facilities.
Parker also argued that new
licensing requirements for
foster parents pushed by law-
makers would be too strict,
especially for relatives with
whom the state may want to
place children. Some people in
foster homes may have criminal
backgrounds but that doesn't
mean the home is unsafe, she
"People will be less willing to
be foster parents," Parker said.
or call the newsroom at
From page 1A
The city will also put $400,000
of its own funds toward conver-
sion from coal energy to renewable
energy sources like solar energy.
The first phase of converting
to solar power in Ann Arbor will
be to install solar energy panels
on the buildings at the Ann Arbor
The panels will power the entire
market, and some leftover power
will be used to power Kerrytown
buildings, Hieftje said.
A kickoff celebration was held
Monday on the grounds of the mar-
ket. Energy experts and politicians,
including Hieftje and Rep. John
Dingell (D-Dearborn), attended
the celebration and described the
benefits of solar power.
"What this entails is a com-
munity-wide effort to educate not
only people who might want to
buy (solar panels) but also install-
ers on how to inspect them and the
city government to make it a little
easier," said David Konkle, Ann
Arbor's energy coordinator.
Konkle said the money will
be used to build indoor and out-
door traveling exhibits to teach
residents about alternative energy
The desired end result ofeducat-
ing Ann Arborites about the bene-
fits of solar energy is an increased
From page 1A
The objections dealt with the
fact that the constitution does not
explicitly grant MSA the right to
deal with apportionment, instead
delegatingthese duties tothe Elec-
tion Board. It does not, however,
prohibit MSA's involvement in the
This marks the first time MSA
has dealt with an election's appor-
Also at last night's meeting,
MSA Rep. Anton Vuljaj resigned
from his post as chair of the Bud-
get Priorities Committee. He said
he needed to take time to deal with
interest in solar energy, which
would hopefully lower solar panel
costs, Konkle explained.
"At this point in time it's a little
expensive and the technology has
to come down,"
The remaining money will be
used to survey residents and teach
residents and businesses about the
potential cost benefits of convert-
ingto solar energy.
These goals fit into Hieftje's
challenge to draw 30 percent of the
energy powering downtown Ann
Arbor municipal buildings from,
renewable sources by 2010 and to
draw 20 percent of energy power-
ing the entire city from renewable
sources by 2015.
Despite Heiftje's hopes for Ann
Arbor, energy experts have reser-
vations. Kurt Brandle, a professor
in the College of Architecture and
Urban Planning, says that solar
power has drawbacks.
He said that if the energy gath-
ered by solar panels is not used
immediately, it can be costly to
store. The optimum hour for gath-
ering solar energy is at noon when
the sun is the brightest. But the
hottest hour - when there is the
most demand for energy - is about
two hours later.
"When you get it, unless you use
it immediately in the building you
have to store it in hatteries or you
have to give it back to the electri-
cal company or throw it away,"
personal issues and received a
round of applause from the assem-
bly after his short speech.
Vuljaj, along with Engineering
senior Joel Alan Schweitzer, is fac-
ing a charge of using a computer to
commit acrime - a felonycarrying
up to four years and a $5,000 fine
- and the high court misdemeanor
of interfering with an electronic
device, which carries up to two
years in prison and a $1,000 fine.
Both charges stem from the March
2006 MSA elections, during which
attackers shut down a rival MSA
BPC Vice Chair and MSA Rep.
Stella Binkevich will take over
Vuljaj's empty position. MSA Rep.
Gibrap Baydoun will fill Binkev-
From page 1A
using wheelchairs reported being
"crammed" into platforms designed
for wheelchairs while fans in front
of them stood, blocking their view.
They also criticized the University
for not offering a wide variety of
seatlocations, echoingthe concerns
of the Michigan Paralyzed Veter-
ans of America, which has filed a
lawsuit challenging the number of
wheelchair-accessible seats in the
Adding to mounting complaints
from faculty and fans about a lack
of transparency in the University's
process for approving renovations,
the letter also says the University
has refused to provide' the OCR
with information, or has provided
limited information, about reno-
vation projects conducted over the
last 15 years.
"We note that our investigation
was impeded by the University's
failure to respond to our requests
for information about many con-
struction projects," the letter says.
"OCR has been compelled to base
its information on the limited
information that the University has
made available in addition to OCR's
University spokeswoman Kelly
Cunningham said she was sur-
prised that the University received
the letter, saying ithas provided the
department with requested infor-
mation and has renovated its facili-
ties in response to criticisms raised
by the OCR.
A renovation project scheduled
to begin at the end of this football
season will fix many of the prob-
lems cited in the letter, Cunning-
ham said. The project will also add
more ADA-compliant bathrooms
and concessions to the main con-
course in addition to adding struc-
tures containing premium seating
along the sidelines atop the seating
"They have all the information
about the expansion project," Cun-
ningham said yesterday. "We've
been so transparent about every-
thing we're doing with the expan-
sion project thatthey've got to know
what it is. I'm completely baffled."
Cunningham said the Univer-
sity has already made some of the
necessary changes outlined in the
letter, including expanding bath-
rooms to make them accessible to
wheelchairs and lowering counters
at concession stands to accommo-
date wheelchair-bound patrons.
The Department of Education's
letter says that the counters adjust-
ed by the University are still sev-
eral inches higher than required by
the Uniform Federal Accessibility
Standards and that the University
did not lower counters at all types
of concessions stands.
Physics Prof. Keith Riles, a mem-
ber ofthe Senate Assembly Commit-
tee on University Affairs, criticized
University President Mary Sue
Coleman in a written statement
yesterday for not telling SACUA,
the University faculty Senate's
executive arm, about the Depart-
ment of Education's letter when she
spoke to the group on Monday.
"It is ironic that President Cole-
man did not inform SACUA of the
pending stadium ultimatum as she
touted the openness and transpar-
ency of the stadium renovations
process," Riles said in the state-
ment. "Communication with the
faculty needs to be improved."
Dems slam Clinton in debate
for 'doubletalk' and
PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Dem-
ocrats Barack Obama and John
Edwards sharply challenged Sen.
Hillary Rodham Clinton's candor,
consistency and judgment yester-
day in a televised debate that under-
scored her front-runner status two
months before the first presidential
Obama, the Illinois senator,
began immediately, saying Clinton
has changed her positions on the
North American Free Trade Agree-
ment, torture policies and the Iraq
war. Leadership, he said, does not
mean "changing positions when-
ever it's politically convenient."
Edwards, the former North
Carolina senator, was even sharper
at times, saying Clinton "defends
a broken system that's corrupt in
Washington, D.C." He stood by his
earlier claim that she has engaged
Clinton, standing between the
two men, largely shrugged off the
remarks and defended her posi-
tions. She has been the focus of
Republican candidates' "conver-
sations and consternation," she
said, because she is leading in the
She said she has specific plans
on Social Security, diplomacy and
health care. "I have been standing
against the Republicans, George
Bush and Dick Cheney," she said,
"and I will continue to do so, and I
think Democrats know that."
But she avoided direct answers
to several questions. The New York
senator wouldn'tsay how she would
address the fiscal crisis threaten-
ing Social Security, she declined
to pledge whether she would stop
Iran from developing a nuclear
weapon or say whether she sup-
ports giving driver's licenses to ille-
gal immigrants. Rather, she tried to
turn every issue into an argument
against President Bush.
It was the Democrats' first debate
in a month, and during that time
Clinton has solidified her front-
runner position, gaining in polls,
taking the lead in fundraising and
dominating the agenda. The Iowa
caucuses are scheduled for Jan. 3,
and the New Hampshire primary
could be even earlier.
Clinton defended her Senate
vote in favor of designating Iran's
Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist
group. Obama, Edwards and others
have said Bush could interpret the
measure as congressional approval
for a military attack.
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For Wednesday, Oct. 31, 200/
(March 21to April 19)
Some kind of confusion with friends
and groups might start to clear up now.
As this happens, you'll have a better idea
about your own future goals.
(Aprit 2010o May 20)
Itsp heon difficlt trying to second-
guess bosses, parents, teachers and
authority figures for some time.
However, starting today, you'll have a
better idea about what others expect
(May 21to June 20)
Your idealism has been aroused more
than usual lately. However, certain
things might haVe been fuzzy or unclear.
Now you'll get a better handle on things.
(June 21to July 22)
Confusion about shared property or
even an inability to act on your part
might diminish very soon. As a result,
you'll have a clearer idea about what you
want and what you deserve.
(July 23 to Aug. 22)
Many of you have been in a tailspin
concerning intimate relationships or,
partnerships lately. You've found your-
self second-guessing everything.
Starting today, you'll have a clearer
vision of things.
(Aug. 23 to Sept. 22)
It's been hard to know what you really
want to achieve at work. You feel spread
too thin. Now you might be able to con-
centrate your forces more efficiently.
(Sept. 23 torOct. 22)
Creative projects and also romantic
relationships have been confusing and
even disappointing lately. Fear not.
Things are going to become clearer.
(Oct. 23to Nov. 21)
E9erything that has been fuzzy or
unsure in your home and domestic life
might find a firmer footing as of today.
At least you have amore realistic idea of
what you can achieve.
(Nov. 2210o Dec. 21)
So many delays have stalled you
lately! These should reduce signifi-
cantly, starting today. Now you can
move forward with more confidence.
(Dec. 22to Jan. 19)
Financial matters have been perplex-
ing lately. Both your income and your
expenditures have been hard to pin
down. Now things should come together
in a more concrete way. Finally!
(Jan. 20 to Feb. 18)
You'll start to feel increasing confi-
dence in your ability to be productive
and effective in your world. There's a
sense of going forward now. Yay!
(Feb. 19 toMarch 20)
Your ruler, Neptune, has been going
"backward" since May of this year.
Today it begins to go "forward" (in rela-
tion to planet Earth). This makes you
feel stronger and more confident.
YOU BORN TODAY You're
extremely observant: You miss very little
that is going on around you. You're an
excellent source of information, either
due to your own wonderful research
abilities or your personal observations.
You're extremely persevering and deter-
mined! Nevertheless, you like to be pop-
ular and accepted by others. (You try
hard to please.) Your year ahead is won-
derfully social and pleasing. Enjoy!
Birthdate of: Jane Pauley, TV anchor;
Kinky Friedman, singer/author; Deidre
2007 King Features Syndicate,Inc.