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Altoona Mirror (Newspaper) - October 3, 2001, Altoona, Pennsylvania INSIDE TODAY SPOUTS: 76ers open camp at Bryce Jordan Center / Bl NAHON: Fed cuts interest rates to a 40-year low / Cl Fruit offers a harvest of opportunitiesAltona ittirrur © Copyright 2001WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 3, 2001 500 newsstandMichigan-Altoona band bond ends on sour note By Jay Young Staff Writer The bridge between the Altoona Area School District and the University of Michigan marching band was burned by administrators in Ann Arbor, Mich., in the name of saving money. * ;The Big Ten program surprised Altoona late last week by canceling its scheduled appearance Friday at Band Blast. “This has everything to do with not hav- Wolverines band director says money was the reason behind canceling this weekend's trip. ing $25,000,” Michael Haithcock, Michigan director of university bands, said Tuesday. The district coordinated housing for the visiting 275-member band and resched uled the highly anticipated Erie Prep game for Saturday so Mansion Park would be available for the event. Despite Michigan’s no-show, the event will go on as scheduled. Haithcock said he was ordered by university brass to bring out of the red the program he took over Sept. I. He replaced a director who left the program in April. The only way to make up the difference was to cancel the band’s football game trip to either East lansing, Mich., or State College, Haithcock said. Since Michigan State is one of the school’s biggest rivalries, the Michigan athletic department decided they could handle the Nittany Lions without the assistance of their nationally renowned marching band. Haithcock claims the Penn State trip would cost the band $38,000, or $25,000 more than the funds available. The prior agreement to perform in Altoona wasn’t part of the decision process. “With all due respect, that is not something I was at liberty to think about,” Haithcock said. “I know everyone in Altoona is disappointed, and I’m equally disappointed to have to had to make the call." Please see Note/Page A7 ALTOONA HOSPITAL Trauma center may not ensure financial health By William Kibler Staff Writer Although it became a trauma center this week, the financial future of Altoona Hospital isn’t any more certain than last week when it abolished 90 jobs after losing money. Hospital officials say the center will recoup the capital investment in about three years and become a jBoney-maker by bringing in badly injured patients and enhancing the hospital’s prestige and marketability. With a mostly rural coverage area stretching from Maryland to New York through the middle of the state, the hospital will get many blunt trauma cases from vehicle, industrial and farm accidents, and most of the victims will carry insurance, officials said. Altoona will contrast with inner-city hospitals, which treat a high percentage of trauma from gun and knife wounds on poor victims who mostly are uninsured. Big inner-city hospitals almost without exception lose millions of dollars per year, said Kathy O’Donnell of the American College of Surgeons in Chicago, which accredits trauma centers nationwide, although not in Pennsylvania. Cook County Hospital in Chicago “hemorrhages cash,” treating everyone who comes through its doors, she said. But community hospitals like Altoona’s should at least break even, especially if they are close to freeways. But running a trauma center is expensive, said Cheri Rinehart of the Hospital & Healthsystem Association of Pennsylvania. It’s costly to have qualified staff around the clock and high-tech equipment. Trauma centers also must abide by mandates, conduct accredits-altoona hospital CENTER FOR MCCRONE tion-agency surveys and maintain a registry of patients to provide the required training and education and to administer it all, Rinehart said. It costs an additional $1.3 million per year on average — and it shows up in the uncollectable debts file. Trauma center hospitals carried 46 percent of all uncompensated care in Pennsylvania hospitals, Rinehart said, but they average operating margins that are 24 percent lower than other hospitals. Making ends meet is a problem for all trauma centers, said state Rep. Ron Buxton, D-Harrisburg, who, with state Rep. Curt Schroder, R-Chester, has introduced legislation that would provide $18 million for the state’s trauma centers to be distributed by the Department of Health. “The information we have is that they don’t make money,” Buxton said. But Kym Salness, chairman of the emergency department at Penn State Hershey Medical Center, said hospitals don’t enter trauma to make money but to serve the community better. “The whole hospital kind of rises to a higher level of care and sophistication and capability,” Salness said. Please see Center/Page A7 RAILFEST 2001 Mirror file photo by Kelly Bennett A train chugs by the Alto Tower Switch House in this photo from Oct. 5, 2000. Vintage diesel locomotives from the 1950s will lead the way on excursion rides Saturday and Sunday during Railfest 2001.Vintage locomotives, private cars featured By Walt Frank Staff Writer Vintage diesel locomotives from the 1950s will lead the way on excursion rides Saturday and Sunday during Railfest 2001. The E8 classification locomotives, which often were seen in their Pullman green paint while assigned to the Juniata-based Conrail Business Train, recently were returned to their Pennsylvania Railroad red paint scheme. They will appear at Railfest as PRR 5809 and 5711, their original designations. “They are stunning to look at; they will knock your socks off. There isn’t anyone who won’t be impressed,” said R. Cummins McNitt, executive director of the Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum. Railfest 2001, sponsored by the museum, in cooperation with Norfolk Southern Corp., Amtrak and The Juniata Terminal Co. inc., will be held from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Please see Railfest/Page A14 2001 ItffSTIF YOU GO What: Railfest 2001 Whan: 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday Where: The Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum, Horseshoe Curve, Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site and Staple Bend Tunnel; Norfolk Southern Juniata Locomotive Shop equipment display Parking: Lots at the Juniata shop will be available for Railfest parking. Parking will be free. Cost: $15 per day for adults, $4 for children ages 5 to 18. An excursion ticket for a train trip around the Horseshoe Curve is $14, $50 to ride the private Kitchi Gammi coach. Also available is a weekender pass, which includes a two-day pass and an excursion ticket. Cost is $25 for adults and $16 for children. For tickets: Call 946-8034 Couple’s charges dismissed; boy’s statement disallowed By Phil Ray Staff Writer HOLLIDAYSBURG—Child abuse charges filed nearly a year ago against a Claysburg couple were dismissed after a judge barred the use of the only substantial evidence against them — a statement by the 2-year-old involved. Blair County Judge Jolene G. Kopriva dismissed charges of endangering the welfare of a child against the mother, Tammy J. Povich, 23, and her boyfriend, Gerald Smith, 27. The beating allegedly took place in a Claysburg apartment building Sept. ll or 12, 2000, when the boy was spending the weekend with his mother. The child’s father, who has custody of him, noticed bruises on the child’s face and buttocks when he returned from his visit. Please see Abuse/Page A5 Police, welfare workers taught idiosyncrasies of investigations CHILD ABUSE By Phil Ray Staff Writer Child abuse investigations are very different from other cases, Altoona Detective Sgt. Terry Lingenfelter told fellow officers Tuesday. Lingenfelter said children often are too young or injured to take the witness stand. Sometimes they don’t want to talk about their experiences, particularly to adults, and they clam up or revert to baby talk. It may take years before they are mature enough to tell their stories in court. Court procedures are strict, Lingenfelter said. Children’s statements can be presented to a jury but not until a judge determines there are valid indicators that the children are telling the truth. For instance, if a child says things to please the adults around him or if he were under pressure from an adult to tell his story in a particular manner, the child isn’t allowed to testify, and his statements won’t go to the jury. Please see Investigate/Page A5 DELIVERY Subscription or home delivery questions: 946-7480 or (800) 287-4480 7    22910    00050    4 *    I bigfoun I 0 9 Lottery numbers, A2 WEATHER Mostly sunny, 78° ■ Forecast, A2 Altoona iHtrror THE GREAT COMBINATION! Call us today...Make money today. Ask for THE GREAT COMBINATION of MIRROR CLASSIFIEDS and HOT-ADS Phone (814) 946-7422 or fax us at (814) 946-7547 ffocAi Business A11 Hospitals A13 Obituaries A13 Opinion A8 PORTS Local B4 Scoreboard B5 I Classifieds C6-14 Movies C5 EJ* Comics D5 Community news D2 Puzzles D4 Television D4 BUSINESS After joining with one of the largest information technology companies in the nation serving the insurance and medical industries, 41 jobs at Home Health offices in Lakemont have been cut. PAGE A11 ;

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