Tuesday, August 9, 1977

Yuma Daily Sun

Location: Yuma, Arizona

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Yuma Daily Sun, The (Newspaper) - August 9, 1977, Yuma, Arizona y UMA tDAlL? SUN SUN 230th Issue, 74th Yeor 5 Cents ARIZONA _ SfNTINEL Yuma, Arizona, Toes., Aug. 9, 1977 SENTINEL 126th Issue, 105th Yeor SLIGHTLY UP County seeks with a tax rate of Bv TERRY L.ROSS The Yuma Daily Sun A slightly higher 1977-78 Yuma County tax rate was officially established this morning at a brief special meeting of the board of supervisors. The rate of per of assessed valuation is slightly more than last year's The tax rate is designed to raise That is the amount which miist be raised by direct tax levy for the county's million budget adopted July 29. Last year's rate sought to raise million and fell short due to delinquent taxes. Last year's budget totaled over million. County Manager Gene Brazeel said the new tax rate would mean only a few cents' difference to the average property owner, provided the assessed valuation of his property has not in- creased. However, an increase in valuation and tax levies for school districts and improvement districts can hike the total taxes paid in various parts of the county. The overall assessed valuation for Yuma County increased about 8% over last year's valuation of to a total of County Assessor Alberta Smith said this percentage of increase is pretty much in line with other counties in Arizona. She pointed out that the actual assessed valuation of the county will not be certified by the state until this fall, but there should only be a few thousand dollars' difference. TRANSPORT PROBLEMS Four Yuma public administrators toss around ideas about Yuma transportation needs and solutions at last night's Arizona Dept. of Transportation meeting at the civic center. From left are Jim Bjornstad, president of the Yuma Chamber of Commerce; Bob Baldwin, Yuma County planning director; Hugh Winderweedle, director of Yuma Dept. of Com- munity Development; and John Baca of the Yuma water treatment plant. (Sunfotol FBI investigating Vegas agents over freebies from crime figures TRANSPORT ISSUES Bus service and better streets among needs cited by Yumans Yuma needs inner-city bus service, improved maintenance of streets and highways, refined railroad passenger and freight service, construction bicycle paths and highway roads that run north-south from here. This was the consensus last night among some 50 people attending a public hearing sponsored by the Arizona Dept. of Transportation (ADOT) at the Yuma Civic-Convention Center. ADOT is holding hearings throughout the state to find out what the public thinks Arizona tran- sportation should be in the next 25 years. The public's comments will be in a report to be published in the fall. It will be a segment of a state transportation plan projected to be designed by 1979. The Yuma meeting, the ninth in a series of 18 statewide hearings, focused on several transportation issues in- cluding congestion, pollution, area growth, transit service, statewide travel services, finance, projects and energy. The participants were split into small discussion groups headed by ADOT officials. The groups voiced their objections to the existing state transportation system and suggested some alter- natives. Some opinions were that: Delivery of goods to Yuma is sporadic and costly. "There is a real inflated cost in one man said. Bus and rail freight services are in- convenient and infrequent, most agreed. Increasing congestion, especially in inner Yuma, creates pollution and lengthens the time it takes to get to work. The 4th Avenue and 16th Street intersection was considered "busy and dangerous." Public transportation, which many said is lacking, is desperately needed to ease traffic congestion and provide access to jobs, medical care and shopping. The construction of new and im- proved transportation facilities will help to reduce congestion. Energy, considered a serious problem facing Arizona, could have a (Turn to Page LOS ANGELES (AP) The FBI has conducted a month-long investigation of its charges that its agents in Las Vegas were accepting free meals, show tickets, lodging and other gratuities from organized crime figures, the Los Angeles Times reported today. "Hell, some of our agents are playing footsie with the same bastards we're tryng to put in one FBI source, who asked to remain anonymous, told the newspaper. Because of the situation, the newspaper reported, other FBI offices have refused to share information with the Las Vegas bureau for fear it would fall into the wrong hands. FBI Director Clarence Kelley con- firmed Monday that the internal in- vestigation was conducted last June and that the information was being reviewed for possible disciplinary action. However, he said, "The results of this inquiry revealed no criminality or serious misconduct on the part of bureau employes." A principal complaint received in FBI headquarters in Washington, D.C., was that many of the field agents in Las Vegas have been there since the 1950s and have developed friendships with the people they were supposed to be watching. Some agents had taken security jobs with the casinos after retiring. But the acceptance of gratuities was not limited to agents stationed in Las Vegas, one Times source said. "This became a regular stopover for a lot of people, from agents to inspectors, because there was always somebody who could arrange a freebie or the source said. As a reult of the investigation, the newspaper said it learned that the FBI was establishing special guidelines to cover the 45-agent Las Vegas office and to regulate at what age and what point in his career an agent could be tran- sferred there. "This will cut down on the op- portunities for developing any cozy relationships with the other side and keep some guy from roosting here until he can retire and take some big job in one of the a source said. Robert J. McCarthy, special agent in charge of the FBI's Los Angeles field office on organized crime and white- collar crime, headed the investigation. Many agents assigned to the Las Vegas office were subjected to lengthy in- terrogation and several sought legal advice from assistant U.S. attorneys in the Las Vegas. Reservation fire still burns Yuma chamber under fire for handling of Cochise- Airwest ByCAROLKEHL The Yuma Daily Sun For the second time in less than a week, the Yuma Chamber of Commerce has been criticized for its handling of the upcoming Civil Aeronautics Board hearing for Cochise and Hughes Air- west airlines. In an editorial aired this morning, local radio station KALJ-FM charged the chamber with misrepresenting facts and issuing a biased news release. This latest flurry in the Cochise- Airwest controversy stems from the chamber's drive for supportive af- fidavits to be used at the CAB hearing. The Oct. 4 aviation hearing is the result of a Cochise application for cer- tification, subsidy and expanded air service. Last week, blank affidavits were mailed by the chamber to its 527 members. Instructions were that business people and other interested persons could use the forms to write their comments and opinions to the CAB. The cover letter noted: "You should state your occupation, field of en- deavor and particular need for air service, how it would affect your business, and your reasons why Air- west can better serve your needs." The cover letter went on to state that "the crux of the hearing will be cer- tification for Cochise Airlines which would suspend Airwest from further service to Yuma." The KALJ editorial called this "an out and out misrepresentation of the facts." It said if the CAB did certify Cochise, it would put Airwest in the position that Cochise is presently in. "It would then be Airwest's decision to pull out of the editorial went on. KALJ said the supportive votes had been sought "on the basis of the biased details offered by the chamber." KALJ called the action "unfair to the mem- bership and to the citizens of Yuma." "It is most important that the Pilot hobbles off from Wellton plane crash A light plane loaded with 400 pounds of a substance identified as marijuana crashed about five miles east of Wellton last night, Yuma County deputies said. Identified as the pilot of the plane was Mark Brenhuber. 28, Tustin. Calif. He taken to Yuma Regional Medical Center, where he was under guard by deputies this morning. Brenhuber sustained a broken leg and possible rib injuries. He also reportedly complained of back injuries. But the injuries didn't prevent him from fleeing the crashed plane. Brenhuber managed to make it about a quarter-mile from the crash before he was caught. Deputy Jimmy Huitt said. "We were tracking him when we heard him yelling. He was lying along side of a road when we got him." Huitt said. The plane, a single-engine Cessna 182. was flying low when it hit a power line. That caused it to nose down into a plowed field owned by Ed McElhaney of Wellton. "The plane was torn up pretty bad, said Huitt "When the nose hit the ground, the engine was torn loose, the landing gear was destroyed and the bottom was torn Huitt said. The plane didn't flip or catch fire. Huitt added. Deputies and Federal Aviation Administration officials were at the crash scene this morning trying to determine the cause of the crash. Deputies said the plane could have developed engine trouble or been flying low to avoid radar at the international border. It is believed the plane was flying into the United States from Mexico when it crashed. When the power line snapped, it twirled and wrapped itself around other wires between the poles. That caused a short, which cut off electricity from Telegraph Pass to Mohawk Valley, deputies said. It took crews from the Wellton- Mohawk Irrigation Dist. about an hour to restore power to the entire area. A Yuma City-County Narcotics Task Force agent said eight bags of marijuana were found in the plane s wreckage. He said he will seek a criminal complaint against Brenhuber this afternoon. citizens of this community are made fully aware of unbiased facts of the Cochise-Airwest KALJ continued. "The chamber so far has offered only theit biased opinion and that of only a few who wish to push something over under the guise of total support of their view." The editorial urges chamber mem- bers to find out all the facts before completing the chamber affidavit. The editorial also rapped the chamber for the way its aviation committee "mapped strategy." KALJ said it learned that only a select few aviation committee members had met with Jim Bjornstad, chamber president, including Airwest station manager Henry Puryear. Calling this a crucial and con- troversial issue, a member of the chamber aviation committee is reported in the editorial to have asked why Puryear was at the meeting and "why wasn't the other side also asked to be (Turn to Page 3) Air Force finds women pilots work PEACH SPRINGS, Ariz. (AP) A forest fire continued to burn brush and pine trees near the Grand Canyon today, but official estimates of the size of the blaze varied. A Bureau of Indian Affairs spokesman said Monday evening that the fire had blackened nearly acres on the Hualapai Indian Reser- vation about 30 miles north of this northwestern Arizona community. Late last night, that figure was revised downward to acres. took infrared aerial photographs and they showed the fire has formed a V-shape of, about said spokesman Charles Bandy. "It's just not easy to accurately assess things when you're down walking on the ground." Bandy said 700 fire fighters would continue a fire line around about acres in case the lightning-caused blaze spread. The fire was discovered Friday, but officials said they believe it started Wednesday. There still was no prediction of when containment would come and fire fighting costs were estimated at so far. Bandy said efforts were hampered by very, very rough terrain and 90-degree heat yesterday. BIA spokesman George Leech said they hoped containment might come Tuesday, but it would depend on water and personnel supplies. "We hope containment will come by Tuesday Leech said. We've got about four hot spots on the north and east sides that could potentially spread it further." Injuries to fire fighters were minor and no buildings were threatened, but tribal officials mourned the loss of several hundred acres of Ponderosa pine which supports a lumber operation. Converted bombers were used to drop fire-retardant chemicals on the flames as bulldozers scraped sagebrush and pinon pine away from the perimeter. Trucks were hauling water over 50 miles of dirt road from Valentine, the nearest water source. Fire fighters were flown in from Colorado, Montana and Wyoming to bolster Arizona's forces. YUHS, Disf. 1 set same-day elections but polls to be at different locations WASHINGTON For the first time, the Air Force is allowing women to fly its aircraft, saying the per- formance of 10 women in training school was comparable to that of successful men students. Although the law bars women from combat aircraft, the 10 graduates of flying school at Williams Air Force Base are being assigned to navigate other aircraft beginningthis fall. Military officials said Monday that the women pilots, who will graduate Sept. 2, underwent the same training as men and that there have been no problems. The women will be allowed to fly cargo transports, aerial refueling tankers, weather reconnaissance, medical evacuation and training planes. Out of the class of 20 women pilots, six others are continuing study as navigators, one withdrew on her own and three were eliminated for flying deficiencies, authorities said. Yuma voters will be asked to make two trips to the polls Sept. 13. The Yuma Union High School Dist. Board last night approved holding its election on the same day as a special Yuma School pist. 1 election but at .separate locations. The superintendents of the two districts discussed a joint election. But Dist. 1 school board members objected to the idea at their meeting last week as the high school district lost the last two bond elections. Board president Bob Moody last night said, "I certainly wouldn't want to do anything that might arouse any animosity between the boards." Board member Helene Bennett said, "If they do feel its going to cause them some trouble, we probably ought to just have our own election.'' At first, Ed Hansberger supported the idea of a joint election. "Nobody wants to go to several places. It would save a little money." But then in agreement with the other two, he said, "If we're going to cause problems, we just ought to go our own way." By a state technicality, both districts need voter approval before they can spend federal funds for new con- struction. Three Dist. 1 board members feared voters might not understand the construction means no local tax rate increase. As they have defeated high school bond elections in the past, they might defeat the Djst. 1 issue in con- fusion. YUHS Dist. board member T.O. Beach was also present last night. Board member Steve Shadle was ab- sent. Weather High yesterday 106 this morning 84 I) a.m. temp near 98 High today mid near 107 Low tonight near mid 80s High tomorrow near 106 11 a.m. humidity Average high this date 105 Average low this date 82 Forecast for Yuma and vicinity: Continued hot. humid and mostly sunny this afternoon and Wednesday. Slight chance of thundershowers Wednesday afternoon and evening. Chance of rain increasingto Wednesday afternoon Sunset Sunrise good evening ABE MILITARY UNIONS a good idea? The Sun takes a Street Beat poll and finds mixed reactions. Page 3 RENT CONTROLS, however well-intentioned, distort the operation of the free market and cause a hardship on renters, says columnist Neil Peirce. Page 5 YUMA RESUMES PLAY tonight in the Pacific Southwest Regional Babe Ruth tournament at Desert Sun Stadium. Last night Utah and Northern California were eliminated. Page 15 AN INTEREST in needlework prompts Sande Greenawalt to open her own business. The timing is perfect; she goes to work just when her husband retires. Page 9 ZIPPER RIDE DEATH investigation could take several days before officials clear up details of the accident at Legend City nearTempe. Page 17. LOW SUPERSONIC FLIGHTS will be discussed in regular monthly meetings between the Air Force and Papago Indians living near Sells. Page 12. Accent on people............9 ....................21 Crossword.................20 Editorial..................4-6 Food....................10-11 ...................17 Movies ....................20 Sports ..................15-16 Weather ...................21