The Times and Democrat from Orangeburg, South Carolina on February 1, 1974 · 8
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The Times and Democrat from Orangeburg, South Carolina · 8

Orangeburg, South Carolina
Issue Date:
Friday, February 1, 1974
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Page 8A, THE TIMES AND DEMOCRAT, Orangeburg, S.C., Friday, February 1, 1974 O? Q Medicaid Program In S.C. Gets Reprieve SHE'S KEPT HER BOUNCY EXUBERANCE Actress Jane Withers, shown as a child star back in the 1930s (left), demonstrates she's still got the same bouncy exuberance today (right). Evidence can be viewed Monday, Feb. 4, when she appears on a Mitzi Gaynor television special. The new generation recognize her as Josephine the Plumber on TV commercials, but she first achieved fame when appearing with Shirley Temple in "Bright Eyes" about 1934. (AP Wirephoto) Jane Withers Still Moppett By BOB THOMAS Associated Press Writer LOS ANGELES (AP) - Some child movie stars age badly, becoming cruel caricatures of their moppet selves. Not Jane Withers. She has the same round, impish face, the same black bob, the same bouncy exuberance of the Jane Withers who was a star in the 1930s. Evidence can be viewed Monday, Feb. 4, when she appears on Mitzi Gaynor's special on CBS-TV. A new generation of television viewers know her as Josephine the Plumber. But their parents (grandparents?) and addicts of the late, late show recognize Jane Withers as the brattish but basically well-behaved girl who first achieved fame by bedeviling Shirley Temple in "Bright Eyes," circa 1934. "Let's face it I'll be 48 on April 12," said Jane with a chuckle. "That disturbs some of the stars I meet who go back to the same era. They don't like the idea of my getting older; it reminds them that they are, too." Jane was lunching at the Hollywood Brown Derby after finishing the Gaynor special, and the place brought back a flood of memories. She recalled landing in Hollywood with her mother in 1932 after a career as radio's "Dixie's Dainty Dew-drop" in her hometown of Atlanta. "The first place we stayed was the Plaza Hotel across the street," she said. "We couldn't afford to stay more than one night, then we asked for the nearest Presbyterian church." They got help at the nearby Presbyterian church; Jane remains a member. She remembers hanging outside the Brown Derby long enough to fill two autograph books. And she remembers appearing on radio revues with other child hopefuls like Mickey McGuire and Frances Gumm, who became Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland. In her heyday Jane earned $2,500 a week from Fox and $50,000 a year in endorsements. Her money, unlike that of some other child stars, did not disappear. "Fortunately my dad had a great love of California land," she said. "He kind of dibble-dabbled in real estate in a marvelous way." As a result, she has never been forced to work as an adult, and that is something that has infuriated producers. She has turned down dozens of offers for TV series, as well as such stage shows as "Mame," "Hello, Dolly" and "No, No, Nanette." "The kids have always meant more than anything to me," said Jane, "and we always held a family meeting to vote on whether I should take jobs that I was considering." The family voted 12 years ago that she should accept the role of Josephine in the TV commercials, and she has been doing it ever since "the longest-running one-minute show in television" she calls it. "It has been great for me, both in terms of money and in keeping me before the public eye," said Jane. "I never do less than 30 a year, including 12 in French-Canadian. Jane Withers' name has never been involved in scandal, but she has had her share of trage dy. Her first marriage ended in acrimony, and the loss of her second husband was a severe blow. And in late 1952 she was paralyzed with rheumatoid arthritis. "The doctors told me that I might be able to walk again in 22 to three years, she re called. "I said I didn't have 2 to three years to spare. With a lot of help from the Lord, I was walking before the end of 1953." Jane often refers to her faith in conversation, and she analyzed why she has managed to escape the multiple troubles that struck Garland, Rooney and other child stars: "I always took my troubles to the good Lord, and I never failed to get an answer. Senate OKs Homebuilders State Board She has taken roles in films like "Giant" and "Captain Newman, USA" and in occasional television series. But most of her time has been devoted to her children. She had three by her first husband, William Moss, whom she divorced in 1954. The three are now grown, and she has two teen-agers by second husband Kenneth Errair, who died six years ago. COLUMBIA (AP) - A bill creating a separate state board to license and regulate residen tial homebuilders was approved by the Senate Thursday after two hours of debate. It passed on a 31-4 roll call despite the contention it would establish another state agency just because homebuilders are at odds with the existing Con tractors Licensing Board. The existing board licenses all contractors handling proj ects ot izu.uuo or more, in cluding homebuilders, highway construction firms and general construction firms. The proposed new agency would license and regulate those who build homes or make home im provements costing $10,000 or more. Voting against the bill Democratic Sens. Robert C. Lake of Newberry, John D. Long of Un ion, Thomas E. Smith of Flor ence and James P. Stevens of Horry. The bill was passed by the House last year but now goes back across the corridor for i House consideration of extensive Senate amendments. "The Senate Judiciary Com mittee did an excellent job amending this bill to make it almost ineffective," said Lake. "But it didn't quite do the job it should have been anihilated. By ROB WOOD Associated Press Writer COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP)-The medicaid program in South Carolina has received a 30-day reprieve after officials of the State Social Services Department and the attorney for 43 nursing homes agreed Thursday to an extension of the present contract. Meanwhile, the South Carolina General Assembly appointed a six-member study committee to probe into the hassle between the nursing homes and the Social Service Department that had threatened to end the program that covered some 4,-000 elderly South Carolinians. R. Archie Ellis, commissioner of Social Services, and Harry Dent, a Columbia attorney , former White House aide to President Nixon, and legal rep resentative for the nursing homes, agreed to the one-month contract extension Thursday morning. The contract between the state and the nursing homes was to expire Friday. Ellis had offered the nursing homes a payment of $16.55 per medicaid patient, per day, a boost of about 40 cents a day over the current state contract. The nursing homes, claiming a loss of money each year on medicaid , refused. Ellis and Dent also agreed on a resumption of negotiations with hopes of signing a new contract by March 1. Operators of the nursing homes said they had been notified by Ellis to be prepared to move those elderly patients who received medicaid payments. A spokesman in the office of Gov. John C. West said, "We did this only as a precautionary measure. We didn't want these old people left without proper medical care." The Senate passed a resolution urging the State Budget and Control Board to turn over the $100,000 to the Social Services Department for extension of the nursing home contract. A couple of hours later, Sen. L. Marion Gressette, D-Cal-houn, the senate president pro tempore, asked that the resolution be withdrawn. Gressette said the emergency $100,000 appropriation was not needed. Then the special legislative study committee was named, including Sens. Frank L. Rod-dey, D-Lancaster, Albert Doo-ley, D-Lexington, and Thomas O. Bowen, D-Sumter, and Reps. John K. Earle, R-Greenville, William Green DesChamps , D-Lee, and James H. Moss, D-Beaufort. The president of the South Carolina Nursing Home Association, John R. Cothran, released this prepared statement: "We applaud the action of the House and Senate which avert ed for 30 days the potential crisis of the nursing home industry. The General Assembly passed a resolution to establish a joint committee to study the entire medicaid program and to assist the nursing home association and the Social Services Department to arrive at a fair contract. The association is pleased with the action taken by the General Assembly and is looking forward to full cooperation with the people who have displayed their interest and care for the elderly people housed in nursing homes in our state." Two Truck Drivers Killed OLD FORT, N. C. (AP)-Two truck drivers were killed Tuesday when their tractor-trailers, one a refrigerator unit carrying about 35,000 pounds of beef, collided on U. S. 70 on a two-mile grade on the side of Old Fort Mountain near where five other persons were killed in a collision last fall. NOTICE Hunt's Exxon And Lee's Exxon Will Be Closed On Saturdays Until Further Notice DtttMI SAVE $60. Early American or Mediterranean Styling 25 INCH DIAGONAL COLOR CONSOLE TV Add a beautiful new piece of furniture to your living room when you add a new color console from RCA. Either of these 25" diagonal sets Early American or Mediterranean style makes a lovely addition to your decor. And both feature the Super AccuColor black matrix picture tube . . . XL-Color chassis with many solid state components . . . and Automatic Fine Tuning. 54672,3. 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