New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - January 1, 1987, New Braunfels, Texas
Politics, taxes top 1986 stories
DALLAS (AP) — Texas politics, dominated by Bill Clements’ dramatic comeback win over Gov. Mark White in a bitter campaign, was voted the top state story of 1986 by Texas Associated Press newspaper editors and broadcasters.
White’s defeat after his 1982 surprise ouster of Texas’ first Republican governor since Reconstruction may have ended a successful public career that began in the 1360*
Another Democrat, Supreme Court Justice Raul Gonzalez, appointed to the bench by White, became the first Hispanic ever to win election to a statewide office in Texas.
Tied to the falling political fortunes of White were the issues that ranked next highest among the state’s top stories.
Voted second was the Texas Legislature’s tax increase and spending cuts to stave off a projected $2.8 billion budget deficit. The tax hike was pushed by White.
In third place was news from the (HI patch, as prices plummeted, throwing thousands out of work, shutting companies down across the state and leading to the state’s painful budget crunch.
The economy was blamed by some for White’s failure to get reelected, as was his push for teacher competency testing, a development that was voted fourth. Thousands of the state’s teachers took exams to prove they could master the basics and, although more than 95 percent passed, they launched an aggressive campaign against White.
Ranking fifth among AP member voters was the continued fallout from another education reform, White’s controversial no-pass, no-play nile, which requires students to pass all their classes before being allowed to participate in sports or other extracurricular activities.
Finishing sixth was Texas’ connection to the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger, which took the lives of all seven crew
Although the Challenger story went beyond the state, the repercussions surrounding the investigation into the Jan. 28
disaster had many Texas links, largely because of Houston’s Johnson Space Center.
Rounding out the top IO were the state’s year-long Sesquicentennial celebration, voted seventh; the prison crowding problem, eighth; voter approval of interstate banking with plans for a November 1987 vote on pari-mutuel betting, ninth; and the selection of the Texas Panhandle as one of three finalists for a nuclear dump site, loth.
More than 10,000 events were staged across the state to mark Texas’ 150th birthday party, and state officials estimate 40 million people vacationed in the state in 1986
The state’s prisons were overflowing with inmates, prompting the early release of many and creating one of many campaign issues for Clements, who now plans to meet with a federal judge over the issue.
The approval of interstate banking already has rocked the state’s financial community with the recent merger plans of Houston’s Texas Commerce Bancshares and Chemical New York Corp., followed by a proposed in-state merger of two Dallas banks. More mergers are being predicted by industry analysts.
In addition to the banking actions, the Legislature also granted voters the right to decide on parimutuel betting for horse and dog racing. That vote will alme next November.
The selection of Deaf Smith County in the Panhandle as a site for storing high-level radioactive waste prompted an outcry from the farming region. The matter temporarily has been put on hold, but opponents are using the time to rally their troops.
Other stories drawing substantial votes were the manhunt last summer for jail escapee and convicted rapist Jerry ‘ Animal’’ McFadden in East Texas, the resignation of Southern Methodist University President L. Donald Shields amid the fallout of a football recruiting scandal, and the red tide that threatened the Texas Gulf coast, crippling tourism and the seafood business
Law would change malpractice review
AUSTIN (AP) - The State Board of Medical Examiners’ authority to investigate doctors suspected of wrongdoing would be switched to the attorney general’s office under legislation proposed by Sen. Hector Uribe.
Uribe said he was prompted to introduce the bill Tuesday by recent accounts of doctors who continue to practice medicine in Texas despite violations of state medical law.
“I don’t think it’s a record we, as legislators, can be proud of,” said Uribe, vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services. “I think they can do better.”
The bill proposed by the Brownsville Democart would allow the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners to retain authority to impose discipline, but it would rely on evidence uncovered by the attorney general’s office.
The bill also provides for a hot line to answer consumers’ questions about discipline imposed on doctors, to be paid for by the medical board.
“Most consumers can pick up a copy of ‘Consumer Reports’ and make an informed decision about the kind and quality of toaster or blender they buy,’’ said Uribe, vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services “Yet, it’s almost impossible for them to get any information to determine the integrity or competence of the physician that they hire to perform lifethreatening surgery. ”
Uribe said he is concerned that “an
attorney hired by a board consisting primarily of physicians might fed his first obligation is to the board and not to the individual patient who has a complaint.”
Dr. G. Valter Brindley Jr., executive director of the medical board, declined comment on the bill until he receives a copy.
Attorney General Jim Mattox was on a hunting trip Tuesday and was unavailable for comment.
The proposed hot line would provide information only about discipline made public by the medical board. Until Dec. IO, nearly 90 percent of the discipline imposed by the board during informal administrative sanction hearings was kept secret. Only major discipline, such as license revocation or suspension, was imposed in open board meetings.
The board in December voted to make public all future discipline imposed in administrative sanction hearings. However, informal discipline imposed before Dec. IO will remain secret and will not be available to consumers using a hot line.
Brindley said it would not be fair to make public any past discipline imposed privately because the doctors were told when they were disciplined that the action would remain confidential.
But Uribe said, “I’m very much in favor of past (disciplinary) action being made public Maybe what we need is another rules change.”
People in millions Cost in billions of dollars
1980 81 82 83 84 85 86 87* '88* '89* 90* 91 • '92*
Chicago Tribune Graphic, Source Health Care Financing Administration
Doctors win round in Medicare lawsuit
American Airlines had all-female crew
FORT WORTH (AP) - An allfemale crew manned an American Airlines flight from Washington to Dallas Fort Worth this week, a first for a major airline, officials said Wednesday.
“Our entire crew, including the flight attendants, was made up entirely of women.” said Beverley Bass, captain of Flight 412 which landed in Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.
American spokesman John Hotard said it is the first time a major commercial airline has had an all-female crew, although at least one regional airline has done it.
He said the crew members arranged the all-female lineup themselves with no prompting from the company. Co-pilot Terry Clairidge and flight engineer Tracy Prior accompanied Bass in the cockpit "It was inevitable a flight like this would happen, and I was glad to be a part of it,” Prior said.
It is standard practice among airline pilots and crews to trade flights to accommodate their schedules, Hotard said.
Bass, of Arlington, received her captain's stripes six weeks ago. becoming the only woman with a major airline with that rank, he added.
LUBBOCK (AP) — Thanks to a judge’s order, doctors across the country will get more time to decide whether to participate in Medicare.
U.S. District Judge Halbert O. Woodward granted the doctors’ plea to postpone a deadline for deciding whether to sign participation agreements locking them into a fee structure determined by the government
Woodward granted a 10-day temporary restraining order and scheduled a hearing Jan. 9 to hear more evidence from the American Medical Association and other plaintiffs against the Secretary of Health and Human Services.
The order also prevents HHS from pursuing sanctions against physicians who do not sign up and charge fees the government may find questionable
Tuesday’s hearing stemmed from a suit filed Christmas Eve by the AMA, the Texas Medical Association, the Lubbock-Crosby-Garza County Medical Society, seven Lubbock doctors and three of their patients. They are suing HHS Secretary Olit» Bowen
The plaintiffs say doctors should not be be required to make a decision when they are not likely to receive information concerning the fees they can charge until March.
The suit is challenging as unconstitutional and unfair a section of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation
Act, signed by President Reagan on Oct. 21, and an amendment to the Social Security Act. They claim that a “two-tiered system of medical care” will result if the provisions are implemented..
Doctors who participate in Medicare will not be allowed to charge those patients more than the government tells them to, the suit says. On the other hand, the suit claims, Medicare recipients can’t use their own money to buy more expensive doctors or services.
Additionally, Medicare recipients who go to non-participating doctors are reimbursed only 96 percent of what is paid to patients of par-' ticipating physicians.
That is unconstitutional, the suit states, because it denies patients the right to choose their own doctor and receive equal care
The doctors also are complaining about the method Bowen has chosen to calculate how much reimbursement they or their Medicare patterns will receive.
Beginning Jan. I, non-participating doctors may not charge a Medicare patient more than what is termed the “maximum allowable actual charge,” or MAAC, without facing possible sanctions.
Congress has ordered insurance companies to inform doctors of their MAACs by the first of the year, but the doctors have been told they will not receive the figures until about March I.
SENIOR CITIZEN DISCOUNT Call our Circulation Department for dally home delivery
It’s the little edge that keeps you going when everyone else has called it quits.
At MBank New Braunfels, we can see that spirit in the faces of our citizens. Feel it in the handshakes of our customers.
As we look ahead to 1987, we d like to recognize that kind of spirit and take it with us into the new year.
Happy New Year
from MBank New Braunfels.
That’s the spirit. That’s The Momentum
U MBankNew Braunfels
A Momentum Bank On the Plaza
Motor Bank at 153 Landa and at Main Bank
I ana FOC