Aiken Standard, October 11, 1989

Aiken Standard

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Aiken Standard (Newspaper) - October 11, 1989, Aiken, South Carolina Sports NFL Commissioner Still Undecided Page UA A Quick Read MGM-UA Merger Off, $50 Million Suit Filed BEVERLY HILLS, Cali!. (AP) -One of the biggest deals in Hollywood history collapsed when MGM-UA Communications Co. sued Qintex Group and terminated its $1.5 billion merger agreement with the Australian media conglomerate. After announcing the deal was off, MGM-UA filed a lawsuit Tuesday in U.S. District Court against Qintex Group, alleging breach of contract, fraud and negligent representation. MGM-UA’s board of directors voted to cancel the planned acquisition because Qintex Australia Limited failed to deliver a $50 million letter of credit last month as required, MGM-UA Chairman Jeffrey Barbakow said “We have done everything we possibly could,” Barbakow said. “We really wanted this deal and we did everything we possibly could to hold it together and come up with an approach that they could perform under. And they couldn’t work it out. 'Syndex' May Doom Popular Cable Shows WASHINGTON (AP) - The face on the television screen intones the bad news quietly but firmly: the feds may take away some of your favorite TV shows. That message, designed to make any couch potato boil, is being spread by cable TV operators, who are alerting viewers that the dreaded “syndex” is coming. Syndex is not a virus that eats TV shows; it’s industry jargon for syndicated exclusivity — Federal Communications Commission regulations that allow local, over-the-air television stations exclusive rights to the syndicated, non-network programs they show in their market. The FCC lifted the rules in 1980 to help boost the infant cable TV industry, but now the commission is bringing them back, effective Jan. I. If the rules survive a pending court challenge, viewers may find fewer showings of syndicated hits such as “Cheers” or evergreens such as “Mork and Mindy” and “Hee-Haw.” Fearing a backlash from viewers, cable operators are making a preemptive strike to make sure everyone knows who’s to blame — the government. Weather Clear Skies Tonight Clear skies are forecast tonight with a low in the upper 40s. Sunny skies are forecast Thursday with a high in the lower 80s. Please see Page 6A for details. Deaths L.C. Covington, Langley Effie E. Holmes, Johnston John G. Lyon, Aiken Gladys B. McKinney, Langley Grace C. Rikard, Johnston Caroline W. Salley, Coatenville, Pa. Mallie Tyler, Salley Frances L. Walker, Statesboro, Ga. Please see Page 6A for details.Inside Today Bridge.......................... ....................7B Calendar....................... ....................6C Classifieds.................... .................. 5B Comics......................... ....................2C Crossword.................... ....................8B Cryptoquote.................. ....................6B Dear Abby..................... ....................2C Local Front.................... ....................1B Obituaries..................... ....................6A Opinions....................... ....................1C Sports........................... ..................11A Television...................... ....................2C Weather......................... ....................6A Page 2A I UKEN COUNTY PU BL JBUCUBRaRI^MtfttWednesday, October ll, 1989 Aiken, South Carolina Vol. 122 No. 252Watkins Firm On Tower For K-Reactor By KATHY KADANE States News Service WASHINGTON — Energy Secretary James D. Watkins has announced he will go forward with construction of a new water cooling tower for the K-reactor at the Savannah River nuclear weapons plant, following a new estimate, released this week, that lowers the projected cost of the new facility. In a letter to Sen. Strom Thurmond, R-S.C., dated October IO, Watkins cited two recent studies by the Westinghouse Savannah River Company (WSRC) and an independent contractor putting the cost of construction at around $82 million. “This represents a significant downward revision from the $127 million estimate included in the Conceptual Design Report and used as the basis for congressional authorization,” Watkins wrote. Thurmond, like other members of the delegation, has expressed serious reservations about the advisability of building a new tower solely for the K-Reactor, which already has a cooling tower. The K-reactor and two sister reactors produce tritium, an isotope used in making nuclear weapons. The reactors at the Aiken facility have been shut down since April, 1988 due to safety concerns. DOE experts have acknowledged the aging K-reactor, expected to be restarted in late 1990, may not be in service more than a decade. Total “lifetime” operating costs of a new tower, however, will exceed $1 billion, according to WSRC calculations reported to Watkins this week. These are the numbers that have members^ the delegation worried. Congressman Derrick is very pleased the (construction) cost estimate has been lowered, but he’s still concerned they’re going to waste $82 million instead of $127 million,” said Jay Hyde, Rep. Butler Derrick’s, D-S.C., aide. “He thinks the (new) K-reactor cooling tower may turn out to be a white elephant,” he added. The exact cost of the new tower for the reactor has not been determined, because engineering studies are not complete. Despite this, in August, Derrick sponsored an amendment to the Energy Department authorization bill calling for cancellation of the project. The Derrick proposal was supported by all members (Please See WATKINS, Page 10A) Colombia Violence Escalates Crusading News Staff Told To Leave Town By The Associated Press BOGOTA, Colombia — Drug traffickers claimed responsibility for the assassination of two employees of a crusading anti-drug newspaper and threatened to kill its remaining ll workers in Medellin if they don’t leave. A magazine journalist and four other people also were gunned down Tuesday rn Colombia’s cocaine trafficking capital. Staff Photo By David Kidwell CLEAN-UP, PAINT-UP: While Alan Brown shovels    finishing touches to the sign for the Aiken Mall, which debris from in front, Charlie Burcham puts the    is having its grand opening today. Mall Developer's Dream Comes True By PHILIP LORD Staff Writer After a 10-year wait, developer George D. Zamias opened the long-awaited Aiken Mall this morning. When fully occupied, the mall will have an annual payroll of $10 million and projected yearly sales of $80 million, Zamias said. The facility will also create an addi- tonal 800 jobs. The Johnstown, Pa. developer started looking at the Aiken area as a location for a mall in 1979, but extremely high interest rates at the time did not allow for mall construction. “Most all of your mall construction was at a standstill because of the high interest rates,” Zamias said. “As soon as the rates dropped and the market became economically feasible, we renewed our option on this property from the Holley’s,” he added. Zamias said, “Basically, it was never a matter of wheather Aiken could support a mall. It was a question of when it was going to be built.” Twenty-two stores of the mall’s eventu- Staff Photo By David Kidwell (Please See MALL, Page 10A) A CLEAN PLATE: Michael Maxwell adds a shine to the plate glass window of a mall store prior to the grand opening. The shootings in Medellin followed 13 bombings in three other Colombian cities late Monday and early Tuesday — the most serious rash of attacks since the country’s drug lords went to war with the government nearly two months ago. Last month, a car bomb exploded outside the main officies in Bogota of the 102-year-old El Espectador newspaper, injuring scores of bystanders and causing extensive damage. In a telephone call to El Espectador, a man said a group called The Extraditables would kill the ll members of the Bperis Medellin staff if they did not ive the city in three days, an editor at the paper said. The staff is composed of journalists, secretaries and administrative workers. The anonymous caller said The Extra-ditables was responsible for Tuesday’s assassinations in Medellin of the paper’s administrator and circulation manager for the city of 2 million, said the editor, who asked not to be identified for security reasons. Drug traffickers have issued statements under the name The Extraditables. The country’s top cocaine barons fear extradition to the United States, which seeks to put them on trial. In announcing the anti-drug campaign, President Virgilio Barco put in place emergency decrees restoring an extradition treaty with the United States and empowering security forces to seize the property of cocaine bosses. Millions of dollars in property allegedly belonging to the traffickers has since been seized, but only one reputed high-level drug figure has been extradited to (Please See COLOMBIA, Page 10A) Norwegian Pioneer Wins Nobel For '40s Theories On Economics By The Associated Press STOCKHOLM, Sweden — Trygve Haa-velmo of Norway won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science today for his work in the 1940s showing how economic theories can be tested through mathematical and statistical methods. Haavelmo’s work pioneered the field of econometrics by explaining how random samples can be evaluated to forecast economic events, the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences said in announcing the award. Econometrics holds that economic theories can be proven by testing them with mathematical and statistical models. Haavelmo, 77, a professor of economics at Oslo University, was the second Norwegian to win the economics prize. He was a research assistant to Ragnar Frisch, who won the prize in 1969, the first year it was awarded. The prize is worth about $469,000. Haavelmo’s 1941 doctoral thesis, which he presented at Harvard University, “had a swift and pathbreaking influence on the development of econometrics,” the academy said in a summary of his achievements. His theories “gave rise to extraordinarily rapid methodological development” ana established “the foundation of modern econometric methods,” the statement said. Haavelmo went to the United States on a Rockefeller grant in 1939, was a professor at the University of Chicago and worked for the Norwegian Trade Commission. He returned to Norway in 1947 and has been at Oslo University since 1948. Haavelmo, the son of a school administrator, is a member of the American Eco- (Please See NORWEGIAN, Page 10A) City Attorney Argues For Dismissal Of Restraining Order On Power Pact MARION — Circuit Judge John H. Waller Jr. was scheduled to hear a motion today that the court throw out a restraining order preventing the Aiken City Council from acting on a power supply ordinance. Aiken City Attorney James M. Holly appeared before Judge Waller with the city’s request that the legal action brought by Aiken Electric Cooperative be dismissed. The hearing started at IO a.m. The City Council has scheduled an executive session for 5:15 p.m. today, apparently for a briefing on the court’s decision. Hie cooperative obtained the injunction from Judge Waller on Oct. 2, a few hours before the Council was to take up an ordinance making South Carolina Electric and Gas Co. the city’s primary power supplier in newly annexed areas. In the same ordinance, Aiken Electric was granted a franchise that would allow it to continue serving those customers on its system before annexation. The cooperative, however, has taken issue with the city, claiming that areas being annexed into the south side belong to it through territorial agreements signed in the early 1970s. The injunction was obtained after the Council refused to grant Aiken Electric equal franchise rights and passed the ordinance on first reading in September. Second reading and a public hearing on the ordinance are scheduled for next Monday, provided Judge Wailer agrees to lift his restraining order. ;