The Baytown Sun from Baytown, Texas on August 21, 1987 · Page 4
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August 21, 1987

The Baytown Sun from Baytown, Texas · Page 4

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Baytown, Texas
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Friday, August 21, 1987
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4-A THE BAYTOWN SUN Friday, August 21, 19*7 Jack Anderson Just a pork barrel of fun Dawn patrol on • ' ' *i , city budget duty BaytoWn City Council begins the annual battle of the budget next week, With early-bird work sessions scheduled Tuesday through Thursday and a public hearing at a regular meeting Thursday night. Work sessions will be held at 6 a.m. those three days in the conference room at City Hall. Even though 6 a.m. may not be the most convenient time of the day for many people, the sessions are open to the public. It may not be necessary to have all three workshops next week. Nevertheless, the sessions are being scheduled and posted, in accordance with the open meetings law, in case all sessions need to be held. Mixed feelings abound about having early-morning sessions. Occasionally, in years past, citizens have complained that they were being excluded when meetings are held that early. However, when council would revert to the evening meetings, few citizens would attend. Our elected officials and city staffers already devote much of their time to night meetings. It seems fair to give them a break, at least once a year, and put up with their "dawn patrol." Also, some of the interested citizens are retired and easily can attend the 6 a.m. sessions. Many others, who have to be at work by 7 or 8, probably could make the 6 a.m. meetings if they really tried. Look at the number of joggers out on the street at the crack of dawn, literally on the run before they get ready to go to work. , So, it can be done. A possible disadvantage would be rushing through the budget data too quickly in the mornings, with a lot of clock-watching going on. This problem can be alleviated in large part, however, by the efficiency of the city administration. The background information is there for the council members. For many weeks in advance, top administrators, department heads and their assistants have conducted their own budget work sessions. They're prepared to answer questions and supply all needed additional information. Back to the early-hour question. If, indeed, it is a problem, let council members know. If not, let's let them and the city staff go about the business of the budget in the best way and at the best time they know how. From Sun files Finnish girl becomes part of Baytown family in 1967 From The Baytown Sun files, this is the way it was: 55 YEARS AGO Dick McCawley, hustling young middleweight fighter from Cedar Bayou, will leave next week for Chicago where he will be matched with Kid Edwards. Rehearsals get under way for the Tri-Cities Players Guild production. "Hearts in Dixie." directed by George L. Keene. The cast now includes F.A. Sheffield. Jean Gillespie. Bill Dillenback. Cleo Armstrong. Geraldine Miles. Clinton Horton. Joe Dorcas Fuller and Karl Lowe Springer. Services are held for Emily Eugenia Massey, 90. pioneer resident and mother of County Commissioner C.D. Massey. She and her husband, the late Calvin Massey. taught school in Cedar Bayou in the 1800s. He died in 1903. 50 YEARS AGO Margie Dell Lawrence of Goose Creek wins the title of Miss Texas of 1937 in competition with 20 other girls from over the state in Port Arthur. She is entitled to compete at Biloxi, Miss., for the national title of Miss United States. She is the daughter of Emma Lawrence. W.E. Bradbury is hurt when an emery wheel burst at Roark Shoe Shop on Ashbel where he is employed. Flying fragments of the wheel struck him between the eves. Harold Halsey Jr. will enroll next month at New Mexico Military Institute at Roswell. N.M. He is a member of the 1937 graduating class of Robert E. Lee. 40 YEARS AGO Highlands Volunteer Fire Department will be financed through Harris County Water Control and Improvement District No. 1 rather than by voluntary contributions from residents. Edith Young, manager of the water office, says a new minimum rate of S2.25 will become effective Sept. 1. Highlands Booster Club approves the purchase of speed limit signs, says President Jim Collins. 30 YEARS AGO Dr. N.S. Holland, 71, former school superintendent here, dies of a heart attack in Dallas. Baytown City Council okays a blanket raise for city employees. It will be an extra $20 a month. Don Hildreth, Peter Kirk. Joe Morgan and Robert Bennett leave for induction in the Army. 20 YEARS AGO Exchange student Elisa Ala- ranta of Finland is staying this year with the Bob Kalbitz Sr. family at 114 Park. Her American "sister" is 16-year-old Sallie Kalbitz. Sallie and Elisa are pictured on the front page of The Sun along with Bobby Sutphin's feature story about the Finnish girl. Leon Brown. . . . ............................................ Editor and Publisher Fred Hornberger ............. . ........................... Assistant to Publisher Fred Hartman ................................... Editor and Publisher. 1950-1974 EPITMIAl MPAftTMCNT Wanda Orton ................................................. Managing Editor Romono Merrill ...................................... Associate Managing Editor AOVfftTBMW MMfttMfMT Russell Moroney ......................... '• ................. Advertising Manager Gory Dobbs ............................................... Circulation Manager The Saytown Sun (USPS 0-46 180) is entered as second class matter at the Boytown. Te»os POST Office 77522 unde» the Act of Congress o' March 3. 1879 Published afternoons. Monday through Friday and Sundays at 1301 Memorial Drive in Sayiow-, Texas 77520 Suggested Subscription Rotes By carrier. K 25 per month. J63 00 cer year, single copy price. 25 cents Daily, 50 cents Sunday Mail rotes on reouest. Represented nationally by Coastol Publications POSTMASTER: Send address c«jng*s to THE BAYTOWN SUN. P.O Bo» 90. Baytown. T«. 77522 WASHINGTON — Congress has its own version of the old quack-and-walk definition of a duck: If it looks like pork and smells like pork, it's actually an essential public-works project. In our usual suspicious way, we spotted several notably porcine projects in the Transportation Department appropriations bill that recently cleared the House. The projects are not necessarily useless. But classic pork barrel tactics were used to fund them. When Appropriations Committee members failed to persuade the Public Works committee and its powerful chairman, Rep. James Howard, D-N.J., to authorize the funds, money was taken from the general fund. That means the expenditures will further swell the federal deficit. Our associate Stewart Harris called the sponsoring members and asked if. perchance, they didn't think the way the projects were lobbied and horse-traded into the bill did not smack of the old pork barrel process. We should have known better. While most members of Congress would willingly define a pork-barrel project as the useless expenditure of public funds for purely political purposes, none would admit that their own construction items were cooked up just to please the folks in the home district. Here are some typical exchanges: — The $5 million down payment for improvements on a state road and bridge to Blount Island near Jacksonville doesn't fit the pork profile at all, according to a spokesman for Rep. Bill Chappell Jr., D-Fla. The project, which may cost an additional $10 million to complete, will give the Marine Corps better access to the island so it can be used for bigger things, like a berthing facility. But some port inspectors we contacted were skeptical of the alleged urgency of the project. They pointed out that if the Marines had considered the access improvement vital, they would have paid for it out of their own budget. The critics also noted that the money will add to the deficit because it is coming from general funds — unlike most highway projects, which are authorized by the Public Works Committee and paid for out of the gasoline tax trust fund: — Two million dollars for a lane-widening project on U.S. 101 near Prunedale, sponsored by Rep. Leon Panetta, D-Calif., doesn't classify as pork either, according to a Panetta aide. As proof, he pointed out that the California transportation department considers the widening so crucial that it will finance 20 percent of it. The project will cost an estimated $58 million to complete — and the money will also add to budget deficits because it will come from the general fund. — The closest to an admission of political consideration came from the office of Rep. Chris Perkins, D-Ky., who sponsored a $2.5 million road widening between Prestonsburg and Paintsville in the "family district" represented by Perkins and his late father, Carl, since 1949. A Perkins aide was proudjhat his boss — a second-term congressman — had garnered the project for the home folks, and suggested that the Transportation Department also plays politics in the way it doles out the gasoline-tax money. Perkins's project is expected to cost S78 million more to complete, and will also come out of the general fund. — Appropriations Committee member Norman Dicks, D-Wash., used his clout to get S2.6 million for a new bridge in the district of Rep. Al Swift, D-Wash. According to a Dicks spokesman, the congressman asked around among the state delegation to see if anyone had a project in mind, and Swift mentioned a condemned bridge on U.S. 101 over the Queets River. Dicks's aide said the bridge project wasn't pork, but an emergency, and noted that U.S. 101 is the only north-south highway on the Olympic Peninsula's Pacific coast. The money will come from general funds. SAINT JO ANN? The Republican Right has a heroine on domestic goals to match Ollie North on foreign policy. She is Jo Ann Gasper, and Rep. Jack Kemp. R-N.Y., is her white knight. When she was fired from her high-level position for insubordination by Health and Human Services Secretary Otis Bowen, Kemp and other conservatives in Congress protested her dismissal. Thanks to their efforts, Gasper was then hired by Education Secretary William Bennett. Gasper's quarrel with her bosses at HHS was a long one, and Kemp was her champion all the way. Gasper tried to enforce departmental rules against funding organizations that advocate abortion, taking a harder antiabortion line than the department. When she insisted on following her own views, she was fired. Kemp, a staunch anti-abortionist, has tried for years to get legislation passed that would prohibit federal funds for any organizations that even inform women that abortion is an option, and tell them where they can get the operation. The "martyrdom" of Gasper may galvanize the anti-abortion faithful. Meanwhile, Gasper will be a policy analyst at the Education Department, working on youth and family issues, suicide, drug abuse — and sex education. United retturr columnltt Jtclc Anderson by Jafeph Spe*r In writing todiy't story. BRER BABBITT Tbday in history Readers' views To The Sun: The community image of Baytown in focus — with a 5160,000 price tag. Another $140.000 or more already spent on lawsuits, appeals on current election process — with strong possibility of city paying out this amount or more should they lose. The contingency fund (established emergencies i in question and tapped for S30.000 in marina study. The city attorney says city charter does not establish what emergency is. thus this slush fund could be used for studies on proposed airport, golf course, other projects which seemingly would enrich and benefit our city. Property values are down. This must be compensated by a tax hike. Common sense makes one realize that our city must have revenue to operate. Here this brings attention back to sums mentioned in first paragraph — in effect, the sums stand out in clarity. There is discussion on the one-percent utility tax being collected. This is just another gimmick tax. The companies collecting them don't mind a bit just as long as the tax mullets are paying it in. Cutting back on policemen and firemen comes into view; attrition in such departments is noted. Here we the taxpayers and citizens of Baytown need to make our voice heard. With only 71 police officers and 69 firemen. as balanced against our 60.000 population, this is fairly close to one of each for every 900 citizens. This thin blue fine of protection certainly doesn't need to be choked off. A word here on our city's administration. Many people talk about it, discuss it, perhaps cuss it, yet very few ever become involved. I have attended council meetings since the 1960s. At times citizen representation is very poor. There have been times when they could be counted on your fingers. Being there, speaking out is the citizen's right. It's like voting for a candidate you like: If you don't vote, you don't care. At the present time various projects are looming in staggering speculation. Our economy is crippled, revenue is down, yet these many proposals i marina, airport, golf course, other projects). Without a doubt they will enrich and benefit our city, and its image in the long run. The question here: Is this the right time? Can we afford such now? If it is not done now. will it ever be done? Is it right to just shove such down taxpayers' throats and pocketbooks? The average citizen does not realize the tremendous pressure being generated here on these issues at hand. Many of them do not have any easy answers — one can find fault either way. Paul Weaver SOON. Circle The Associated Press is entitled exclusively to the use for republicotton to any news dispatches credited to it or not otherwise credited m th.s pope- and local news of spontaneous origin published herein. Rights of repubficotion o* oil other matter Here-rt ere also reserved The Baytown Sun retains nationally known syndicates whose writers" bylVned stories ore used throughout the newspaper. There ore trrnes when these articles do not reflect The Sun's viewpoint. HTTWWlKT Onty signed tetters will be considered tor publication Names will b* withheld upon request for good and sufficient reason Preme Veep letters ihor The Sim reserves the right to ercerpt letters By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS On Aug. 21. 1959, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed an executive order declaring Hawaii the 50th state. On this date: In 1831. former slave Nat Turner led a violent insurrection against slavery in Virginia. He was later executed. In 1858, the famous debates began between senatorial contenders Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas, In 1878. a group of lawyers, judges and law professors founded the American Bar Association at the Saratoga, N.V.. town hall In 1SMO, Communist revolutionary Leon Trotsky died of wounds inflicted by an assailant the day before in Mexico City. In 1944. representatives of the United Stales. Britain, the Soviet Union and China opened talks at Dumbarton Oaks in Washington that helped pave the way for the establishment of the United Nations. In 1945. President Harry S. Truman ended the Lend-Lease program that had shipped some $50 billion in aid to America's allies during World War II. In 1963. martial law was declared in South Vietnam as police and army troops began a crackdown on Buddhist antigovernment protesters In 1383. Philippine opposition leader Bcnigno Aquino was shot to death minutes after his return to his native country following a self-imposed exile in the United States Ten years ago: A private funeral service was held for Groucho Marx, the acid-tongued comedian who had died in Los Angeles Aug. 19 at the age of 86. Five years ago: A group of Palestinian guerrillas left Lebanon by ship under an evacuation plan mediated by the United States. One year ago: Soviet energy officials put the death toll from the Chernobyl nuclear accident at 31, and said the disaster had dealt a serious blow to the Soviet nuclear power program. Today's Birthdays: Britain's Princess Margaret is 57. Basketball player-turned-actor Wilt Chamberlain is 51. Singer Kenny Rogers is 49. Actor Clarence Williams III is 48. Singer Jackie DeShannon is 43. Chicago Bears quarterback Jim McMahon is 28. Actor Matthew Broderick is 25. Thought for Today: "Whom the gods would make bigots, they first deprive of humor." — The Rev. James M. Gillis, Roman Catholic author, editor and broadcaster (1876-1957). Bible verse Let no man My when ht to tempted, I am tempted of God; for God cannot be tempted with erll, nettlter tempteth be any man; but every man to tempt** when he to drawn away of htt 1:11,14

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