Altoona Mirror, April 5, 2001 : Front Page

Publication: Altoona Mirror April 5, 2001

Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - April 5, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania BASEBALL 2001 INCLUDED FREE TODAY: Inside Pitch, the Mirror’s Altoona Curve preseason primer. IN SPORTS THIS WEEKEND: Cory Giger will be in Erie to cover the team’s opening series. COMING TUESDAY: A keepsake edition with coverage of Curve, Pirates home debuts.Altoona Mirror © Copyright 2001 NS car shop hearing called By Craig Williams Staff Writer State Rep. Richard Geist, R-Altoona, is calling Norfolk Southern Corp. to stand up and testify about its decision to close the Hollidaysburg Car Shop to the House Transportation Committee during a hearing April 12 at the Penn State Downtown Conference Center. Though no time has been set for the hearing, it is expected to run all day. Geist said another hearing also is being set for April 26 before the committee in Harrisburg, which likely will be held in the Capitol. “My committee is going to go back on the road with hearings just as we did with the merger,” Geist said referring to the 1998 merger proceedings where NS officials made commitments to the General Assembly at various hearings across the state. According to Richard R. Wilson, special council to the state Transportation Committee, it was commitments made to the General Assembly three years ago that has brought the joint petition by the commonwealth and the railroad labor unions before the Surface Transportation Board, the federal regulatory commission that oversees all rail mergers. Officials of the STB are calling the petition the most visible of the 2,060 pleadings that have come before the STB since the beginning of the breakup of Conrail. Filed March 29 with the board, Norfolk Southern has 20 days to respond to the petition for review. “We have not been formally invited to any hearings yet,” Rudy Husband, spokesman for Norfolk Southern, said Wednesday of the commonwealth’s decision to call hearings. “Once we have, we will make our decision from there.” Please see Shop/Page AIQTHURSDAY, APRIL 5, 2001 50$ newsstand PLACING PRISONS IN PENNSYLVANIA QlwZlff — __ Mirror photo by J O. Cavrich The Federal Correction Institution in Loretto has not caused controversy in the community.Group battles construction By Timothy D. May The Associated Press WAYMART — This sparsely populated, rural farming community in northeastern Pennsylvania is exactly the kind of area the federal Bureau of Prisons looks for when scouting    * places to build new lockups for the mushrooming population of federal inmates. There is wide open space. There is a need for jobs. And there is free land, too: When the state heard the bureau Please see Group/Page A14 Six federal corrections facilities in Pennsylvania, their locations and approximate inmate populations, according to the federal Bureau of Prisons: ■ Federal Correctional Institution in Cresson, Cambria County. Population: 1,187, including a satellite camp. ■ McKean Federal Correctional Institution, McKean County. Population: 1,435, including a minimum-security satellite camp. ■ Allenwood Federal Penitentiary, Union County. Population: 1,062, plus another 3,379 inmates at three lower-security facilities. ■ Lewisburg Federal Penitentiary, Union County. Population: 1,687, including satellite and boot camps. ■ Schuylkill Federal Correctional ’hstitution, Schuylkill County, Population: I 403, including a satellite camp. M Metropolitan Correctional Center, Philadelphia. Population: 965 federal inmates, most of whom are awaiting trial. Source: The Associated Press Residents accept facility By Tiffany Shaw Staff Writer LORETTO — Dealing with a federal prison just down the road hasn’t been a problem for many Loretto residents such as Helen Biller. “I think very little about it. It doesn’t bother me. I’m not afraid,” Biller said. After more than 50 years of living in Loretto, she doesn’t give the Federal Correctional Institution a second thought except for the positive. The prison, which opened in 1984, has brought more than 200 jobs to the northern Cambria County area, providing more employment than previously was available, she said. “If everyone would have more sensitivity about the importance of having employment close to home, it means so much,” Biller said. Please see Facility/Page A14 Hospital pays $100G for deanup By William Kibler Staff Writer HOPEWELL — Bon Secours-Holy' Family Hospital has spent $100,000 in cleanup and faces up to $100,000 more in fines for shipping infectious waste in a load of municipal trash to Sandy Run landfill in Broad Top Township. The waste arrived in three red biohazard trash bags slipped into dark regular trash bags by one or more staffers, who mistakenly thought the red bags contained just harmless trash, despite their color, according to Bon Secours. The surgical scrubs, tubing, bloody pads, plastic, specimen bags and IV bags actually were distributed more widely, much of it in regular trash bags — and there was more of it, according to officials from the township and the state Department of Environmental Protection. The incident has led Bon Secours to review and tighten its standards for disposal of infectious waste. The 10-ton load of compacted waste came to the landfill in a roll-off container March 20, and a tractor operator was squashing it on the landfill when a dark bag burst revealing a red bag inside it, said Barry Clark, manager of the landfill owned by Waste Systems International Inc. The operator stopped what he was doing and summoned Clark and a DEP inspector, but by then, he already had spread the infectious materials over a 50-by-100-foot area. The waste was from the operating room and the lab and may have contained some chemotherapy waste, according to the report of Ernest Fuller, a landfill inspector for the township. The biohazard bags within the dark regular trash bags had split open under the weight and motion of the tractor, which spread the infectious materials around and made it look like there was more of it than there really was, said Dan Duggan, vice president for patient care at the hospital. Staff evidently had placed the biohazard bags in regular trash bags after seeing nonhazardous trash such as paper wrappings for sterilized instruments in the red bags and assuming mistakenly it was all safe, Duggan said. The biohazard bags are as big as standard trash bags but staff doesn’t let them get full, so the biohazard bags could have fit into the regular ones, Duggan said. The township and environmental officials see it differently. “There were infectious waste items in black hags all over,” Fuller’s report states. “It appears that all of this waste was disposed of in black or dark-green garbage bags,” accordingly) Walt Dinda’s report, DEP inspector at the site. Collectively, there was enough infectious waste to fill five or six trash bags, Clark estimated. Township Supervisor Jack Decker agreed that all the hazardous waste in the shipment could have been in biohazard bags enclosed in regular trash bags, as Duggan said. But there were more than three biohazard bags of waste in that shipment, he said. Because the infectious waste came in contact with other trash, Bon Secours’ biohazard waste contractor had to take away 43 tons from the area where the shipment went. The last load went Friday to an incinerator in Norfolk, Va., where the hospital normally sends biohazard materials. Please see Pays/Page AIQIN POLITICS: 9TH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT Speaker of House to visit Pennsylvania By Robert Igoe Staff Writer The U.S. Speaker of the House is coming to Central Pennsylvania to help raise money for the GOP hopeful in the 9th Congressional District race. The press secretary for Dennis Hastert confirmed Wednesday that the Illinois congressman is coming to the region to support Republican Bill Shuster’s quest for his father’s vacant seat in U.S. Congress. John McGovern, who has been in Illinois with Hastert while the Speaker has been undergoing treatment for a kidney stone, said Hastert will be the guest speaker at the event, scheduled for the evening of May 3 at the Comfort Inn in Greencastle, Franklin County. There had been inaccurate pub-THI HASTERT FILE Name: Dennis Hastert Position: Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Party: Republican Represents: Illinois, 14th District Born: Jan. 2,1942, Aurora, III. Family: Wife, two sons Elected to House: 1986 Selected as Speaker: Jan. 6,1999 Web site: www.house.gov/hastert Hastert lished reports earlier this week that the fund-raiser would be held in Altoona. Please see Speaker/Page A3 Conklin, Shuster go head-to-head in race By Robert Igoe Staff Writer With less than six weeks left until the election for a new representative for Pennsylvania’s 9th Congressional District, Republican Bill Shuster and Democrat Scott Conklin are challenging each other on the question of who’s being honest with the voters. Conklin made a public stand on this issue Wednesday by signing the Code of Election Ethics as he addressed a group of senior citizens at the Blair Senior Service Center. “I’ve stated in the beginning, and I’ve stated since the day I started that I do not do negative campaigning,” Conklin said. “I’m going to sign this pledge now. I promised the people of this district that this would be a campaign based on issues and focused on what our accomplishments are.” The pledge, based on a U.S. House Resolution proposed by U.S. Rep. John Baldacci, D-Maine, is a promise by the candidate that “my campaign will be committed to the principles of honesty, fairness, respect for my opponents, responsibility and compassion,” listing specific promises to carry on a campaign in a manner that does not attempt to distort or defame Shuster Conklin “He's trying to portray himself as the positive candidate, then he turns around and delivers this blatant attack on my family. It’s outrageous. Everyone who knows our family knows that we are all hard-working.” “Who I voted for in the election has nothing to do with issues. It has nothing to do with the differences between my opponent and myself. This is a political ploy to take the focus off of the issues.” the record of another candidate or to deceive the voters. Conklin’s public signing is, in part, his reaction to a press release sent out from Shuster’s campaign office accusing him of “dodging the issue” of whom he voted for in the recent pres idential election. “Who I voted for in the election has nothing to do with issues,” he said. “It has nothing to do with the differences between my opponent and myself. This is a political ploy to take the focus off of the issues.” Shuster, however, said voters have the right to know in order to make decisions. “Apparently, it’s important to people,” Shuster wrote in the release, which details three times that Conklin declined to answer the question in interviews. “Political leaders running for office should be willing to stand on their voting record. This includes who they voted for in presidential elections.” Shuster said that he was “very proud to have voted for George W. Bush.” Conklin has responded with a statement of his own, which compares himself with Shuster in key areas. In the statement, Conklin said Shuster has no experience as an elected official and no experience working with senior citizens, while saying that he himself has held public hearings for senior citizens affected by HMO cutbacks such as the pull-out of Geisinger Health Systems. Please see Race/Page A3 DELIVERY Subscription or home delivery questions: 946-7480 or (800) 287-4480 7 '22910 00050    4 f    * BIG FOUR • » • 0 ■ Lottery numbers, A2 WEATHER Sunny, 56° ■ Forecast, A2 Altoona iUtrror HdTADS.dom We're white-hot! THE GREAT COMBINATION Call us today...Make money today. Ask for THE GREAT COMBINATION of MIRROR CIjVSSIFIEDS and HOT-ADS Phone (814) 946-7422  or fax us at (814) 946-7547 I Q LOCAL Q NATION Business A11 Comics C4 Hospitals A13 Classifieds C7-14 Obituaries A13 Opinion A8 □ UFI £] SPORTS Dear Abby D5 Movies D3 High schools B4 Puzzles D5 Scoreboard B5 i Television D5 INSIDE NATION United States expresses regret, and China demands apology. Page Cl ;

  • Barry Clark
  • Bill Shuster
  • Cory Giger
  • Dan Duggan
  • Dennis Hastert
  • Ernest Fuller
  • George W. Bush
  • Helen Biller
  • Jack Decker
  • John Baldacci
  • John Mcgovern
  • Richard Geist
  • Richard R. Wilson
  • Rudy Husband
  • Scott Conklin
  • Walt Dinda

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Publication: Altoona Mirror

Location: Altoona, Pennsylvania

Issue Date: April 5, 2001

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