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The Billings Gazette from Billings, Montana • 3

Billings, Montana
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mUinrjs (gosrftc NATION Tuesday, November 28, 2006 3A Pesticide use over water gets blanket OK High court hears dispute over deadline in bias case Ruling could affect pay discrimination cases nationwide WASHINGTON (AP) A former tire plant worker's complaint that she was paid thousands of dollars less than men in the same job made it to the Supreme Court Monday in a case that could affect pay discrimination claims nationwide. The justices engaged in a lively but inconclusive debate over how to apply a 180-day Attempts to kill mosquitoes could affect other organisms, water quality McClatchy Newspapers WASHINGTON The Bush administration pleased fanners and frustrated environmentalists Monday by declaring that pesticides can be sprayed into and over waters without first obtaining special permits. The heavily lobbied decision is supposed to settle a dispute that's roiled federal courts and divided state regulators. It's popular among those who spray pesticides for a living, but it worries those who fear poisoned waters will result. "We need to act fast to stop mosquitoes when they are found," argued Jim Tassano, a pest-control operator in the California foothills town of Sonora.

"Any delay results in adults emerging. It is far cheaper and much more effective to kill them as larvae (and) if a permit is required, the costs would skyrocket" Tassano was one of hundreds to weigh in over the past three years as the Environmental Protection Agency mulled its options. His sentiments were shared by California's Merced and Tulare mosquito control districts, the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and the Washington State Potato Commission. "Requiring (federal) permitting would unnecessarily disrupt the effectiveness of (pest) control operations and adversely impact hundreds of businesses," the South Carolina Aquatic Plant Management Society warned. The EPA decision gave the pest operators what they wanted.

It also closely parsed the English language for what the all-important word "pollutant" means. EPA officials concluded that a pesticide, when it's deliberately applied, isn't a "pollutant" under the terms of the 1972 Clean Water Act Consequently, after considering nearly 700 public comments, officials ruled that federal "discharge" permits aren't necessary when using pesticides to control waterborne pests. "It will just make things a little less messy" Fresno Mosquito and Vector Control District Manager David Farley said of the decision Monday. "It means we can continue to do what we have done for years, without additional permitting requirements." The EPA also declared that permits aren't needed when using pesticides to control pests found over or near waterways, as in national forests. Any resulting damage is unfortunate but strictly collateral, officials maintained.

"Forest canopy insecticide applications can result in deposition to streams and other waters of the U.S., which are either not visible to the aerial applicator or not possible to avoid," the EPA stated. Environmentalists, though, note that mosquito-killing chemicals can also poison shrimp, frogs and other aquatic innocents. The good intentions of mosquito -hunters shouldn't exempt the chemicals from permit requirements, these advocates say. "Pesticides are intended to kill living organisms, something that most would consider an adverse effect on the environment," noted Janette K. Brimmer, legal director for the Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy.

EPA officials said lawmakers didn't specifically include pesticides in the list of items covered under the Clean Water Act. Lawmakers did specify, though, a litany of substances that include "chemical wastes, biological materials, radioactive materials and agricultural waste." Scans offer clues on King Tut death "Yes, he broke his tot. i 7 i leg, and, yes, 1337 B.C. medicine wasn't as great as it is today, and perhaps an infection occurred which caused death. James Phillips Field Museum archeologist Field Museum archeologist James Phillips, curator of the Tutankhamun exhibit on display at the museum through Jan.

1, deadline for complaining about discriminatory pay decisions under Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964. Lilly Ledbetter sued Goodyear Tire Rubber claiming that after 19 years at the company's Gadsden, plant, she was making $6,000 a year less than the lowest-paid man in the same job. Ledbetter claimed the disparity existed for years and was primarily a result of her gender. A jury agreed, but an appeals court overturned the verdict. Enforce the statute of limitations strictly and an employee is "condemned to perpetually unequal pay for equal work unless she recognizes and complains about the discrimination within a few short months after it first begins," Kevin Russell, Ledbetter's lawyer, argued to the court.

Each smaller paycheck should be treated as a new act of discrimination, Russell said. Allow employees to reach back years to claim discrimination and the deadlines mean nothing, lawyers for Goodyear and the Bush administration said. "No one at Goodyear took Miss Ledbetter's sex into account during the charge-filing period in deciding what to pay her." said Glen Nager, Goodyear's attorney. Applying the 180-day deadline to decisions made years ago makes no sense in a situation in which the disparity grew over time, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said. Early on, "there is no reason to think there is going to be this inequality," she argued.

But Chief Justice John JL McClatchy Newspapers CHICAGO When Egyptian scientists performed the first CT scan of the mummy of Tutankhamun, they turned up a key clue: Bone fragments from the pharaoh's first vertebra, near the skull, were not coated with embalming fluid. Instead, the fragments were clean at the breaks, meaning that the damage had to have occurred after the pharaoh's remains were prepared for burial. The evidence seems to rule out a blow to the base of the skull as the cause of Tut's death, a theory in play ever since X-rays of the boy king were taken in 1968. It's most likely that the bones broke when Englishman Howard Carter and his team rough-handled the mummy after they discovered it in 1922, said Dr. Ashraf Selim, who reported the first detailed findings from the scans Monday at the Radiological Society of North America's annual meeting in McCormick Place.

International scan Selim, a radiologist at Kasr Eleini Teaching I lospital at Cairo University, led an international team of scientists who used a mobile CT scanner to obtain more than 1,900 digital cross-sectional images of the mummy. Preliminary results of the scanning were announced early last year by Zahi Hawass, Egypt's top archeologist, who said the results indicated that Tut did not die from a blow to the head. On Monday, Selim reported to fellow scientists on how those conclusions were reached. The sophisticated CT nans carried out by his team could pick out the residue of the resin used to preserve bodies in ancient Igypt, allowing the scientists to deduce when damage Associated Prcss Acting Surgeon General Kenneth Moritsugu, left, laughs after receiving a flu shot from Jane Johnson during the klckoff of National Influenza Vaccination Week at the Department of Health and Human Services In Washington Monday. Flu shots still recommended as supply remains adequate "Wc need to increase said films from the CT scan are included in the show.

Though the images clearly show a leg fracture, the actual cause of death is still unknown, he emphasized. "Yes, he broke his leg, and, yes, 1337 B.C. medicine wasn't as great as it is today, and perhaps an infection occurred which caused death," Phillips said. "But there are other explanations. He might have died of natural causes even a heart attack, stroke or other type of disease, which was endemic in Egypt.

It's still up in the air." Carefully embalmed Embalmers took great care in preserving Tut's body, including using two kinds of resin, Selim said. After they put an iron stick into a nasal passage to break the thin shell of bone at the roof of the nose, they extracted the brain in pieces through the opening and poured liquid resin through the nose. "This liquid resin would go into the skull, fill it and then it WASHINGTON (AP) There's still time to get a flu shot. Federal health officials reminded people Monday that the flu season usually doesn't peak until February or later. There's more than enough vaccine to go around.

demand, both for public health purposes and to assure an adequate market continues. Mike Leavitt Demand for flu shots typically tapers oft after Thanksgiving. A record 110 million to lis million flu shots are expected to be available this year; millions arc likely to be discarded at the end of the flu season. ITie shots are brewed fresh before each season to match the strains of the flu virus expected to be most prevalent, and cannot be saved year to year. That so much could go to waste worries ealth officials since lackluster demand for sea sonal flu vaccine may discourage manufacturers Roberts was skeptical that employees should be allowed to challenge decisions made years ago.

"It could be 40 years, right, that there was a discriminatory act, in one of the semiannual pay reviews I was raise that I should have gotten," Roberts said. Only Justice Clarence Thomas, who rarely speaks up during court sessions, did not participate in the questioning. Hut he could play a pivotal role in deciding the case. In the l'80s, Thomas wis chairman of the Equal I I oy Oppo rt i ty Commission, which is responsible for investigating workplace discrimination claims. nc of the court's most conservative justices, Thomas was joined by his four liberal colleagues in a 5-4 decision in that made it easier for ictims to complain about long-term job discrimination or harassment when shabby treatment is extended over a period of months or years In ledbetter's case, the said her claims could go forward She was initially awarded more than $18 million.

A judge reduced the award In StoU.lNNJ. Hie Uth I IV Uatiit urt of Appeals overturned the verdict. Health ami Human Services Secretary Health and Human Services officials had asked Moritsugu a "week or two" ago to wait until Monday to receive the shot, department spokeswoman Christina Pearson viid. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends flu shots be given to children ages 6 months to 5 years, as well as to pregnant women, people 50 and older and those of all ages with chronic health conditions, along with a few other groups. Gcllin said the United St.itcs almost has a sufficiently robust supply of vaccine to broaden the recommendations.

In a typical year, 10 percent to 15 percent of the season's flu vaccine gin unused. One manufacturer. Mcdlmmunc, hoH-s to receive expanded federal approval in May for its nasal flu vaccine. That would allow the vaccine, called HuMist, to be used in children as young as 1, company spokeswoman Karen Lancaster said, HuMist can now Ik- used in children 5 and older. Other vaccines may Ik- used in younger childrea On the Net: 'enters fi fcsciitc mui Pn-wnlum tlu inpymuttUm: to the bones had occurred.

Leg examined A second clue was found by examining a major fracture in Tin's left thigh Nine. The femur had a thin coating of embalming resin around the break, indicating ( Tut had broken his leg just before he died and his death m.ry have resulted from an infection or other complication. -Selim said. Another possibility is a fit emhilwrn, which could acted like a clot Jo cause a heart, "Tin? leg fracture was induced hist before death," Selim said. "When they embalmed the body and poured liquid resin, it went through a wound to ctut the edges of the fracture," Tut ascended to the throne at age 8 and was about when he died would shortly solidify," Selim said.

"Assume that there are bone fragments inside the skull. The resin will coal all around the Uxisc fragments and then it solidifies. "What we found is that these two pieces of bone were lying loosely within the skull, not in the resin at alL This means that they got inside there after the resin was put ia after the embalming." Selim said pieces of the vertebra probably were broken off when Carter and his team tried to pry a golden mask from the mummy using iron tools. Resin also glued the mummy to the sarcophagus, and their rough handling to dislodge it resulted in numerous broken bones in the chest and neck, he said. None of these breaks showed any resin residue, unlike the fractured leg, he added.

from making as much in the future. 1 nat could create shortages of regular flu vaccine and could discourage vaccine manufacturers from being ready to produce a pandemic vaccine, if needed. "We need to increase demand, both for pul lie health purposes and to assure an adequate market continues," Health and Human Senil is Secretary Mike Ia-avitt said. Of the nation's 300 million people, 218 million are covered by the government's flu shot recommendations. Although it too early to tell how bad the flu season will be, this year's vaccine is a good match for the influenza viruses now circulating, said Dr.

Bruce Gcllin. head of the federal vaccine policy office. Health officials won't know until after the season how many people actually received the vaccine. On Monday, acting Surgeon General Kenneth Moritsugu received a flu shot in front of reporters to demonstrate there's still time for others to do so, too, Massachusetts to sue over tunnel I V-: After 21 of wnit our goo fr iend jtat Muio is retiring. We will Im luteins open house a I our lunik on, Nov.

2). L'OWi from KM. I'leae top in ami xili Hell. BOSTON (AP) The state attorney general said Monday thai he will sue he companies thai worked on a Big 1 highway tunnel, claiming their negligence led to the ceiling collapse thai killed a woman in Inly, Attorney ( Tom Rritly said he would seek unpct ificd damages for repairs, bws of tunnel use and toll revenue, and other economic (actor in a lawsuit lo he filed toiLiy in Suffolk Superior Court, Reilly said lhal 15 firm Involved In the management, design, construction or oversight of the tntrrstatc runnel wM names! In 0e lawsuit, but that only one project manager itcditrtTar! Brit IctbofT would face the more scrimi claim of gms nrylivUT. "IV firm knew rath on about problems with Oh4 rposy Mt system ued to secure pound torn fete rrilimt pane! ami had evidence of bolt slip ping ot failing Nil still turned over the tunnel to the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority in itMit warn- i (0 Massachusetts Attorney General Tom Roltly ukl a tumult wttl filed today Accusing th Big Dig project manager of "growi rgHgoc." ID to a Rtand jury that will decile whether ctiminal iharges a severe as manslaughter will he brought.

Reilly said. Andy Taven. spokesman for BechtrLTarsons Hrimkrrhoff, saiJ the company would tHt comment on Reilly lawsuit. Ui of the "potentUlly dangrowi niUMtion," Reilly said. I be tlm It was Ikkinp.

IV fuse was lit. It was matter of time until tfagedy occurred," Reilly tukl emphasizing that I lie investigation Is ongoing. I idem is King presented tit it 1 rf T. j1 air, i ii i i i.i 1. it.

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