Thursday, January 4, 2001

Altoona Mirror

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Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - January 4, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania Copyright 2001 THURSDAY, JANUARY 4, 2001 newsstand- SHUSTER RETIRING Cites family, health concerns Effective Jan. 31 Special election likely U.S. Rep. Bud Shuster, R-9th District, rides an elevator on his way to the House chambers in this 1999 file photo, Shuster is calling it quits after 28 years in office. Mirror photo by Kelly Bennett BY WILLIAM KIBLER Copyright 2001, Altoona Mirror Bud Shuster, the region's pow- erful and controversial con- gressman who helped lift cen- tral Pennsylvania from economic decline toward a promising future during his 28 years in Washington, is retiring at fee end of this month. The fallout from Shuster's deci- sion will linger well beyond that. During his time in Congress, Shuster, R-9th District, displayed a pen more powerful than any earth- mover, securing hundreds of mil- lions of dollars for roads, bridges, buildings, sewer and water systems and service programs for this area. He's retiring because of recent health scares involving him and his wife, Shuster said in a letter Wednesday. "These experiences caused me to re-evaluate my priorities and Shuster wrote. Area residents appreciated Shuster, and officials from all sorts EXCLUSIVE of local and regional governments, boards, commissions and agencies routinely assumed he'd be able to get money for their projects. But many congressional watch- dogs scorned his projects as pork. Only a few months ago, Shuster endured a letter of reprpval from the House ethics committee after years of investigation into untimely ties to former staffer-turned-lobby- ist Ann Eppard and for accepting gifts from organizations that stood to gain from laws he could pass. Publicly, he brushed the rebuke aside as he did a scathing "60 Minutes" story that followed it. "It's tough on your family to be in public said state Senate President Pro Tern Robert Jubelirer, R-Blair, a Shuster friend and legislative ally. "He took more of a pounding than many of us." A list of Shuster's legislative accomplishments seems to weigh as heavily as a chunk of concrete from Interstate 99, for which he got the money to build during the last few decades from Bedford to Tyrrjne, with promises of a connectioff the way to MUesburg and Interstate 80. 1-99 was the ribbon that tied his local accomplishments together and linked his constituents economical ly to the rest of the world, attracting companies and jobs and helping this area pull itself to prosperity after the railroad lost steam. The road enabled others to con- ceive and obtain the money for pro' jects such as Blair County Ballpark and the convention center, and Shuster came up with big money needed for infrastructure to comple- ment both. There's lots more, including: bills that turned the idled tal- ents of the Army Corps of Engineers to designing not military roads and bridges, but central Please see AS April a large advertising budget and a grass-roots, bus- ElmerHawbakerin District In the fall, he P Collins to win hjMMI n the U S House area leadwMM h tor eco- na and tocus on taring Mus and transportation. 15-member Republican fresh- ithe former state selective. Irmanship of the transfmMon; Brock Adams and consumer for care ShusMr calls the the issue on "Good Nov. his fourth lim tn the House defeating Blame Havice I a political novice and PennDOT employee. Shuster received 75 percent of the vote. i January 1961 Shuster calls for a full embargo of Iran for taking 52 Americans hostage at the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. Shuster delivers an ultimatum to state officials to Include funding for construction of the limited-access Route 220 in trie state's 12-year transportation plan or he would rewrite portions of a bill that would give Pennsylvania less highway money. Oct. Shuster is injured when a car skidded on a vwt Into the path of the vehicle the congressman was riding in on Route 26. He suffers a partial dislocation ol his neck, broken ribs and injuries to his finger and ankle. He later includes million in the 1982 Surface Transportation Act for a safety demonstration project to encourage seat bett use and is lauded by Transportation Secretary Elizabeth Dole. Dec. More than 70 truckers park their trucks and other vehicles in front of I Shuster's home on Christmas Day to protest a tax increase Included in the 1932 Surface I road tram East Freedom to the BwDonl Counfl Urn book "Miming In America" is published. The 268-page book. rpoilraystoiat s good about the United States Shuster says he wrote the book because of concern about the negativism m the country r. -i Orange fluorescent paint is thrown on the door of Shusters 6Wr County office apparently to protest Shuster's vote to approve million in aid to the I Nicaraguan Contras, but the measure fails in the House. December 1 994 Ann Eppard resigns as Shuslefs chief of slafi to start her own lobbying lirnv I January 1995 Shusier takes over as head ol the Public Works and Transportation Committee. area in terms of economic development and lourism. 1MB Tiw watchdog groups oneoftfum with lies to (ongbniBfaBftaUinldk; _; Kit for April Shusier wi I shops and add 178 jobs over (he next lour lo five years when :'NS ahrJ'CSX'latcfTdver Conrail. 1 NowmbAr 1997 An investigate subcommittee o! the House ethics committee is appointed I lo look into the propriety ol personal and professional lies between Shuster and Eppard. I November 1998 Shustei liounces Mitllin County journalist Monte Kemmler lor Ihe second I straight election to win his 13Ui term. I October The House ethics committee concludes a Diree-year investigation by si I Shuta with a Mir bfSpfiSai; JJe'WHesl torn) of pacstirart available, tit sefflemmt to fend at onW hard fjmily.? iiwnHjfcr Jan. 4, Shusier announces he will retire, elfeclive Jan. 31. Mirror graphic by Tom Worthington II Cove schools could go digital BY MICHAEL EMERY StaffWriter MASTTNSBURG Pennsylva- nia Secretary of Education Eugene Hickok made his second-ever visit to the Spring Cove School District Wednesday afternoon, and his message will be heard worldwide. The secretary announced that Spring Cove is in the running to become one of the first two "digital school districts" in the state, per- haps the nation and maybe even the world. Spring Cove is one of only six state school districts being consid- ered for two million grants that will be used to integrate digital technology and revolutionize edu- cation, Hickok said, "An international panel of tech; nology and education experts selected these six school districts to redefine Hickok said. "Their hard work will make them models for the nation. "Panelists judging the competi- tion represent international acade- mic and technological institutions, so eyes from around the whole world will be watching what hap- pens right he added. Please see A8 CAMBRIA COUNTY Details, details Reade, White residents hear specifics on huge sewer plan Mirror photo by Kelly Bennett John Soldo, Flinton, lets his thoughts be known on the proposed sewer project for Reade and White townships. BY LINDA HUDKINS For The Mirror FLINTON Rep. Patton, praised Reade" and White township supervi- sors at a meeting Wednesday night when they passed ordi- nances to officially create the Glendale Valley Municipal Authority. "I think your children and grandchildren will appreci- ate your efforts 20 and 30 years from he told supervisors and members of the new authority. The sewerage system they're planning will serve an estimated customers in two rural townships in northern Cambria County. Haluska, who's worked on numerous other multi- municipality projects in his district, explained that costs escalate each year a project is delayed. "The time is very good right he said of the prospects for government financial aid for the project. A panel of more than a dozen people, ranging from township supervisors to lawyers and engineers, laid Please see A7 Surprise rate cut bolsters stock markets With more bad news on tap later this week, Greenspan steps in earlier than expected. From Mirror staff and wire reports WASHINGTON The Federal Reserve, faced with a rapidly slow- ing economy, unexpectedly cut a key interest rate Wednesday by one-half point in an effort to avert a serious downturn. It was the first decrease in rates in two years. Wall Street reacted instanta- neously. Within minutes of the Fed's announcement, the Dow Jones industrial average jumped out of negative territory and roared ahead by more than 300 points before settling for a gain in the 200- point range. The Nasdaq index picked up more than 200 points. The Fed cut its target for the fed- eral funds rate the interest banks charge one another on overnight -loans to 6 percent from 6.5 percent, a nine-year high. It also cut its mostly symbolic discount rate by a quarter point to 5.75 percent. The Fed said it stands ready to cut the discount rate by another quarter point to 5.5 per- cent on the request of Federal Reserve banks. Interest rates The Federal Reserve unex- pectedly cut its target for the fed- eral funds rate by one-half point. '90'91 '92'93'94'95'96'97'9S'99'00'01 Source: Federal Reserve AP "These actions were taken in light of further weakening of sales and production and in the context of lower consumer confidence, tight conditions in some segments of financial markets and high Please see AS Subscription or home delivery questions: 946-7480 or (800) 287-4480 4 1 3 I Lottery numbers, A2 Cloudy, chance of flurrifc, Forecast, C3 Altoona iHtrror PTHE GREAT COMBINATION! Call us today...Make money today. Ask for THE (UiKAT COMHINATION of MIKKOK CLASSSFSKDS and HOT-ADS Phone (814) 946-7422 i or fax us at (814) 946-7547' Business Hospitals Obituaries Opinion AS A7 A7 QHWION Classifieds Comics Local Scoreboard Movies i Planner B4 i Puzzles B5 i Television C4-8 C2 D3 D2 D5 D5 ANQTHBt NtMWMnQN Altoona native Paul Winter his Uth Grammy nomination Wednesday. His alburn "Journey With was selected for Best World Music Albcum- Winter For a of Grammy nominees! please see Page D6.J