Athens News Courier (Newspaper) - August 9, 2005, Athens, Alabama
Shady deal 49ers claim trophySee how you can support ASU’s Senior American Legion team from Athens
historical tree program places third in state tournamentThe News-CwrierServing Athens and Limestone County: A Community of Tradition and Future
Tuesday, August 9,2005 enewscourier.com 50 C» vis
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%et us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.
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John Cain of Elkmont
Subscriber of the day
Delphi in race to save itself
Deal to avoid bankruptcy could be just weeks away
From staff and wire reports
The future of the Delphi Plant in south Limestone County is uncertain and the 2,500 employees working there fear for their jobs with news from this past weekend out of Detroit that Delphi is in a race to save itself from bankruptcy.
According to an article in the Detroit Free Press, the new leader of Delphi Corp. says it should only take another six to eight weeks to reach a cost-cutting deal with former owner General Motors Corp.
and the United Auto Workers, hopefully saving the nation’s largest maker of car and truck parts from bankruptcy.
After losing $4.8 billion last year, and another $403 million in the first three months of this year, Delphi, employer of 14,700 in Michigan and 185,000 worldwide is in desperate straits.
Delphi had to borrow another $1.5 billion to pay its bills Friday, prompting three rating agencies to once again cut the company’s already terrible credit rating, and
alarming investors who pushed the value of Delphi stock down 14 percent to $4.96.
“I'm very much concerned about it,” said one Limestone County Delphi worker who asked not to be identified. “I’ve been working here 27 years and I'm a year from retirement and now they tell me I might not get all I'm entitled to. This is just not right.”
“Our workers are on pins and needles,” said another employee. “We don’t know what his going to happen. But we do know Delphi is in deep financial trouble and may not survive this."
Chief Executive Officer Steve Miller, a veteran of corporate rescues, must get help from GM and the UAW to survive, just as rival supplier Visteon Corp. did
with its former owner. Ford Motor Co.. and the UAW in May, the article in the Free Press said.
“I don’t have a deadline, I just have a reasonable sense to the amount of time to work this out.” Miller said. “We'll be working on this the rest of the summer, through August and into September to work it out.”
“What's important is that suppliers and customers have confidence in you,” Miller said. “If people think you're in denial, the lifeline can be real short. If they see you have a plan that's got a shot, they'll give you lots and lots of time.”
Delphi was created when GM spun off
See Delphi, Page 2A
Veto stops council try to hire GM for utilities
By Karen Middleton
ancnem >[email protected]
Athens Mayor Dan Williams vetoed City Council action to hire a general manager for the Utilities Department.
The Utilities has been without a general manager since the retirement of Tom Craven more than five years ago. The issue is essentially void, for the time being.
Councilman Ronnie Marks withdrew the measure from Monday night's Council agenda moments before going into regular session. Williams had sent council members a letter informing them that he would use the veto power of his office to rescind action approved on a 3-2 vote in a July 25 meeting to amend the Utilities organizational chart to add a general manager.
“On the general manager’s situation, I sent each of you a list of the accomplishments that we've made since we have been we’ve been without a general manager,” said Williams. “In studying the situation, I was definitely against hiring a full-time manager. I was for a part-time, but after I saw what all the department heads are doing, I was skeptical of adding any more duties to them. I am also concerned that the council is not unanimous in this.
“The is not a personal thing, but I am vetoing the resolutions passed at the last meeting. I
See Veto, Page 3A
Councilman to residents: Clean up act or leave city
By Karen Middleton
Hundreds of beer cans littering a North Jefferson Street yard after a Friday night party has drawn the ire of one city councilman.
“They must have had a beer-drinking party on Friday night and just threw their beer cans down in the front yard,” said Councilman Harold Wales at a Monday night council meeting. “My first thought was what a shame it is for all the young kids that live around this house to wake up and see this. I have lived in that part of town for approximately 10 years and I never saw' anything like this.”
Wales said he pulled in the yard and two men ducked into the house. He said he blew his truck horn for them to come back out, but neither man would reappear.
“I would have liked to ask them why they would litter our neighborhood this way, but they would not come back outside,” said Wales.
Councilman Johnny Crutcher said he also " drove by the house and estimated that there were as many as 500 empty beer cans strewn about the front lawn. After Wales’ and Crutcher’s visits, Wales said he believes police officers also stopped and warned the residents about the litter because it was soon picked up.
“Anyone who would litter our town like that needs to he locked up and then leave town,”
See Clean up, Page 2A
School — they’re lovin’ it
News-Courier Kim Rynders
Brookhill Elementary School kindergartner John David Stephenson listens intently and signs ‘I love you” as his teacher Laura Warren reads a book about sign language. John is one of thousands of students in Athens and Limestone County who returned to school Monday after summer break.
Roadwork begins on Alabama 99
News-Courier Kim Rynders A resurfacing project is underway on Ala. 99. Work began last week to resurface a 16-mile stretch from the Limestone County line to just north of the Elm Street intersection.
By Tashia Lovell
Noticed anything different on Alabama 99 lately?
Workers began a resurfacing project last week that could last as long as 30 days, though it probably won't take that long, said Johnny Harris, Division Engineer w ith the Alabama Department ot Transportation.
Non-siliceous material is used in the project, a material that is more abrasive and more resistant to polishing than limestone or other siliceous material. The finished project will also look different than Alabama 99 did prev iously due to the materials used to resurface the road.
Harris said that the aggregate mix is not as smooth and slick as plant mix.
He said the material used for this project is a little better grade material than normally placed on lower volume roads using the liquid asphalt aggregate combined surfacing material in lieu of plant material.
Harris said the project would extend 16 miles from the Limestone County line and stop just north of the Elm Street intersection.
Although he wasn't sure when the last resurfacing project was done on Alabama 99, he said that
See Roadwork, Page 2A
A photo tour of Elkmônt
Hey, Sound Off:
1 have lived in Limestone County for 20 years. 1 don’t understand why there is no concern for the air we breathe. More and more people are burning trash cIipr-•pmgs and letting them smolder for days.
Green, vegetation does not burn. 1 have asthma and there are many days 1 cannot go outside.
If people would just use some common sense when they burn, we could all breathe a lot healthier.
1 am not against burning, but there are ways to burn cleanly and put the fire out when you're done
Smoke is pollution. How many days do you look up and see blue sky any more instead of gray haze?
More Sound Off Valley, 5A