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Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - January 22, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania Nation: Study: Drivers can suffer high-tech overload Cl Lite: Scrapbooking trend is sweeping the nation DIAltona Mirror © Copyright 2001 INSIDE TODAY so tp > mirror Willie the Wizard wauls ie know aiioiii vin. kv foods JU may fake apeek insult; the I Un ■, I r ;n or s SkKiibliook Pane IO COVER STORY: Where kids can go for fun during the winter Shuster leaving to hurt Amtran By William Kibler Staff Writer The upcoming retirement of U.S. Rep. Bud Shuster, R-9th District, already is hitting home. Area agencies are beginning to gear down and change directions in expectation of heavier loads and rougher going when Shuster retires. Amtran decided last week to change the focus of a feasibility study on moving its office and garage from near Mansion Park to a new location because it wouldn’t be feasible without the kind of money Shuster routinely got for local projects, Amtran General Manager Erie Wolf said. “We’ve just had it really easy for a really long time,” he said. “He took good care of Pennsylvania transit.” Now Amtran will concentrate on figuring out how to live with what it has. Both the garage and offices are cramped. Buses sit outside, and Business Development Director Tom Kievan’s office is along one wall of the conference room. The cheapest answer for the garage problem might be a shed roof along the Mansion Park side of the budding, which is sheltered from the wind, he said. The ultimate answer for the office space problem may be an addition on the end of the building farthest from Logan Boulevard, Wolf said. There’s also the possibility of reconfiguring space inside. Amtran has been dependent on Shuster for special-project money. It has paid most recently for four big new buses and a shelter at Logan Valley Mall. There’s money already committed for improvements at the terminal in the Altoona Transportation Center, radio system changes and Please see Amtran/Page A3MONDAY, JANUARY 22, 2001■■■■■I DHM BUSINESS G ! Mirror photo by J.D. Cavrich Betty James, retired president of James Industries, plays with the toy that made the family company famous. James will be inducted into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame next month. Slinky maker honored with induction into hall of fame By Tiffany Shaw Staff Writer BJ OLL1DAYSBURG — The matriarch of one Hof the country’s favorite toys for the past I ISO years will be inducted into a national hall of fame. Millions of Slinkys are enjoyed by children around the world, and now Betty James will enjoy a place among the toy industry’s elite. James, the retired president and chief executive officer of James Industries, will accept her place in the Toy Industry Hall of Fame early next month. More than 250 million Slinkys made from 50,000 tons of wire have been sold since James Industries was founded in 1945 in Philadelphia. Betty James became sole owner of the company in the mid-1950s. She moved operations to Hollidaysburg in 1964 while taking care of her six children. James Industries was purchased in 1998 by POOF Products Inc. of Michigan. Slinky was commemorated in 1999 when the U.S. Postal Service released the Celebrate the Century series. Slinky was chosen as one of 15 stamps to recall the events and people of the 1940s. “I’m delighted. I’m absolutely thrilled. I never expected it,” she said. “I’m thrilled for Slinky and me both.” James will join 40 other toy magnates in the Fast facts about Slinky: ■ How many have been sold worldwide? More than 250 million ■ How much wire does it take to make a Slinky? 63 feet ■ What are some of Slinky s film credits? “Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls” “Demolition Man” “Other People’s Money” “Hairspray” "Toy Story” Source National Toy Hall of Fame Mirror graphic by Tom Worthington ll hall of fame with a celebration Feb. IO, three days before her 85th birthday. The hall of fame was established in 1984 by Toy Manufacturers of America Inc. to honor individuals who have had a profound impact on the toy industry. Please see Spring/Page A3 500 newsstand Blair asked to construct new prison ■ Despite cramped conditions, officials say it’s unlikely a new jail will be built soon. By Phil Ray Staff Writer HOLLIDAYSBURG - A watchdog group member has suggested that the time has come for Blair County to construct a new prison, but Commissioner John Ebersole said that won’t happen “for a long time.” The give-and-take about a new prison came last week when Mary Burgoon of Hollidaysburg, a member of the Pennsylvania Prison Society, attended a meeting of the Blair County Prison Board. Burgoon is part of a group that goes into the prison monthly and moves cell to cell listening to what inmates have to say. The society members then attempt to resolve problems. Burgoon’s latest trip to the prison around the holidays was less than satisfactory, not so much because of what the inmates said to her but because of what she observed. “The crowded conditions ... You can’t breathe in there,” she said. “That place has looked bad for months, especially the large shower room.” She said the jail’s condition is having an effect on the inmates, adding they are “just disgruntled people.” They have little to do. “They just sit. They don’t do anything,” she said. The prison’s acting warden, Lawrence S. Lavelle, said there is an ongoing painting program. Commissioner John Eichelberg-er Jr. said county prison board members “are constantly looking at improvements.” The county prison also has many programs for inmates. For instance, as of Thursday, the number of inmates on work-release stood at 32. Prison counselors said that 12 inmates are enrolled in high school equivalency degree courses. Another 15 attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and 23 attend Narcotics Anonymous meetings. The problem may be the number of inmates in the prison, Burgoon said. A state inspection report dated Jan. 5, 1999, indicated that the prison was over capacity, with 207 inmates in the facility and 16 housed in other institutions. Please see Prison/Page A4 Altoona Housing Authority appeals evaluation score By William Kibler Staff Writer The Altoona Housing Authority is appealing what it feels is an unfairly low score on a U.S. Housing and Urban Development evaluation for Fiscal 2000. Despite the appeal, the authority plans to tighten its in-house inspections to prevent low scores in the future, especially on safety. The Public Housing Assessment System originally gave the authority an 86.8 percent out of IOO, putting the authority in the “standard” category, more than seven points lower than last year when it was a “high performer.” The appeal already has restored two points deducted for a late submission because the authority got the required materials in on time, Executive Director Dan Farrell said. The authority also hopes the appeal will reverse several other “life-safety deductions.” Most deductions were for “pretty mundane stuff,” said Jim Cassidy, acting director of HUD’s Public Housing Office in Pittsburgh. HUD cited the authority for bars on the windows of the community room at Fairview Hills, a fire extinguisher reportedly out of date, at least one smoke detector without batteries in a resident room and book shelves placed in front of balcony doors in a resident’s room, Farrell said. HUD didn’t like the bars on the windows because it could have prevented someone using the windows to escape if there was a fire. But a city inspector had no problem with them because there were fire doors just a few feet away, Farrell said. Please see Score/Page A4 GOLDEN GLOBES Executive producer Darren Starr (center) is surrounded by cast and crew of HBO’s “Sex and the City,” which won for best comedy television series. Please see story, Page C3. DELIVERY Subscription or home delivery questions: 946-7480 or (800) 287-4480 22910 0005U The Associated Press IM| ....... I BIO FOUR 0    9    4)    2 ■ Lottery numbers, A2 WEATHER Mostly sunny. 33° ■ Foitfcast, C2 Mill Run project to reinforce banks By William Kibler Staff Writer Mill Run is troublesome because it floods streets, yards and basements when it rains long and hard. A proposal for a $500,000 project to restore and protect its banks in Altoona and Logan and Allegheny townships won’t help much when the big rains come, officials said. But it will make the stream friendlier to the environment and to wildlife, look better to residents and be more efficient at draining the watershed. Those benefits are good enough for Tom Rice, who lives at the corner of Browning and Coleridge avenues. He came to a public meeting on the project at temporary City Hall Thursday to learn about the proposal. “It’s a step in the right direction,” said Rice, who doesn’t get water in his house from the creek, but his sewer sometimes backs up when Mill Run overflows and overloads storm sewers in the area. But it’s not a flood-control project, officials told him. “You can’t expect not to have flooding if it’s really going to come,” he said. Rice is one of 13 property owners who by Thursday afternoon had signed authorizations for workers to come onto their land to do the project. Workers are seeking such authorizations from 36 residents. The proposal is not the grand $18.6-mil-lion flood-control project also planned for Mill Run, a project that the state Department of Environmental Resources plans to study next summer. Please see Project/Page A4 ■MMM □ LOCAL Q NATION INSIDE I Business Hospitals A5 A7 Classifieds C3-8 IN SPORTS Obituaries A7 (3 ure Comics Catcher J.R. House, a top Opinion Q SPORTS A6 D5 prospect of the Pittsburgh Pirates, could be playing for the Curve this season PAGE Bt Local BG Community news D2 Shortcuts D3 Scoreboard ?5 Television D4 I IE GREAT COMBINATION Altoona JHirrur Call us today...Make money today. Ask for THE GREAT COMBINATION of MIRROR ( I .ASS I FI EDS and IDI ADS Phone (814) 946-7422 or fax us at (814) 946-^47 ;

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