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November 01, 2007 - Image 3

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2007-11-01

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The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom

Thursday, Noverfber 1, 2007 - 3A

NEWS BRIEFS
Hearing delayed
for pair charged
in MSA scandal
The pair charged with shutting
dowr a rival party's website during
the 2006 MSA election had their
preliminary hearings rescheduled
yesterday. MSA Rep. Anton Vul-
jaj and Engineering senior Joel
Alan Schweitzer are each charged
with one count use of a computer
to commit a crime - a felony with
maximum penalties of up to four
years in prison and a $5,000 fine -
and interfering with an electronic
device, a high court misdemeanor
with penalties of up to two years in
prison and a $1,000 fine.
The separate hearings had been
scheduled for yesterday. Vuljaj's
new hearing has been set for Nov.
21. Schweitzer's has been set for
Nov. 14.
Vuljaj refused to comment and
Schweitzer has said he will not
comment on the case until it is
resolved.
DAVE MEKELBURG
BALTIMORE
Church ordered to
pay $11 mil after
picketing funeral
A grieving father won a near-
ly $11 million verdict yesterday,
against a fundamentalist Kansas
church that pickets military funer-
als out of a belief that the war in
Iraqis a punishment for the nation's
tolerance of homosexuality.
Albert Snyder of York, Pa., sued
the Westboro Baptist Church for
unspecified damages after mem-
bers demonstrated at the March
2006 funeral of his son, Lance Cpl.
Matthew Snyder, who was killed in
O Iraq.
The federal jury first awarded
$2.9 million in compensatory dam-
ages. It returned in the afternoon
with its decision to award. $6 mil-
lion in punitive damages for inva-
sion of privacy and $2 million for
causing emotional distress.
Snyder's attorney, Craig Trebil-
cock, had urged jurors to deter-
mine an amount "that says don't
do this in Maryland again. Do not
bring your circus of hate to Mary-
land again."
DETROIT

Lawmakers may
repeal sales tax

Six percent tax on
services would take
effect Dec. 1
LANSING (AP) - Michigan's
fragile state budget agreement was
reached in the middle of the night
after months of sometimes painful
give-and-take between lawmakers
and Gov. Jennifer Granholm.
Shortly after the sun came up
yesterday, it was clear the nego-
tiations and the pain aren't over.
Lawmakers already have intro-
duced bills that would kill off the
expanded 6 percent sales tax on
services set to take effect Dec. 1.
Many businesses consider the tax
confusing and unfair, with some
warning it will cause them to
lose business to out-of-state com-
petitors or have to leave the state
themselves.
Businesses would pay about
three-fourths of the new tax,
which would bring in about $725
million a year, raising concerns
that it could discourage growth
in the service sector that Michi-
gan desperately needs.
The Legislature could have its
hands full dealing with the issue
before a scheduled two-week
break in mid-November. That
doesn't leave much time to act.
Granholm said yesterday she

could supportrepealingthe servic-
es tax law before it takes effect, but
she wants lawmakers to come up
with other ways to raise the $614
million the new tax is expected
to bring in this fiscal year so pay-
ments for schools and other state
programs aren't affected.
"I am and have been in discus-
sions with the business commu-
nity about what that could look
like. My criteria for the replace-
ment are that it is revenue-neutral
and bipartisan, and is not tempo-
rary," the Democratic governor
told reporters. "Any changes have
to be made in the very, very near
future."
Sen. Mike Bishop, the Legisla-
ture's top Republican, is among
the lawmakers who support look-
ing at a repeal before the new tax
takes effect.
If the Legislature doesn't act
by Dec. 1, businesses joined in
The Coalition to Ax the Tax says
they're prepared to collect enough
signatures to let voters decide in
November2008 ifthetaxshouldbe
repealed. The group plans to hold a
Capitol news conferencetoday.
Some business groups already
have offered to temporarily hike
the rates in the new Michigan
Business Tax set to take effect
Jan. 1 to offset the hundreds of
millions lost through repealing
the broader sales tax on services.

Prosecuter charged SATURDAY, NOV 10 0 8 PM
t withoverreaching Tickets available online at
on cases is acquitted w« Ps
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A former federal prosecutor was
acquitted yesterday of withholding
evidence from the defense during
the nation's first major terrorism
trial after the Sept.11 attacks.
The government said Richard
Convertino wanted so badly to
win convictions in the case that he
broke the law. But Convertino's law-
yers insisted he did nothing wrong
and had no reason to hide evidence
against four North African men
accused of operating a "sleeper"
terrorist cell.
"It's a just end to a politically
motivated prosecution," Converti-
no said after the verdict was read.
The jury reached its decision
after less than a day of delibera-
tions.
LANSING
* Wayne State
drops extra tuition
contingency fee
Wayne State University is drop-
ping a tuition contingency fee for
students in the upcoming winter
semester.
The decision at the Detroit school
came after the state Legislature fin-
ished adopting a budget for the new
fiscal year.
The budget deal includes reim-
bursing universities for state sub-
sidies that were delayed earlier this
year.
Wayne State's $13 per credit hour
contingency fee was adopted in the
fall semester. It was designed to
help protect the school in case it
wasn't reimbursed for the withheld
money.
- Compiled from
Daily wire reports

_ X 1'sun & snow, & Michigan union
ChGreek M Ticket Office. To charge by
-- sar&&--- C- ----_ - phone, call(248)645-6666.
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3,842
Number of American service mem-
bers who have died in the war in
Iraq, according to The Associated
Press. There were no new casual-
ties identified yesterday.

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