Sun News Digest

SUN NEWS DIGEST

December 08, 2004

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"I never at any time asked to be referred to as a benefactor or to have my name kept secret." --- Willard J. Hackerman, offering details of an aborted land deal with the state in St. Mary's County (Article, Page 1A)

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NATIONAL

Army revises transfer policies

In an effort to restructure forces and support continuing operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, Army leaders will transfer officers more frequently and with less notice, setting aside policies in effect for some two decades that were designed to stabilize families. [Page 1a]

House OKs intelligence overhaul

The House voted to overhaul a national intelligence network that failed to prevent the Sept. 11 attacks, combining under one official control of 15 spy agencies, intensifying aviation and border security, and allowing more wiretaps of suspected terrorists. [Page 3a]

MRI may aid in cancer fight

Magnetic resonance imaging could play an increasingly important role in finding malignant breast lumps, but isn't accurate enough to eliminate the need for biopsies, researchers say. [Page 8a]

WORLD

Iraq violence a risk, Bush says

Despite intelligence assessments offering little hope for peace in Iraq in the near future, President Bush said that insurgents had been dealt "a severe blow." However, he acknowledged that violence still posed a major risk for the country. [Page 1a]

Powell dismisses meddling charge

Secretary of State Colin L. Powell rejected Russian accusations of Western meddling in Ukraine's electoral process and criticized Moscow for curbing press freedom. [Page 16a]

Iraqi official warns neighbors

Iraq's deputy prime minister accused the country's neighbors of doing too little to stop foreigners from joining the brutal insurgency. Barham Saleh noted that a Syrian driving a car bomb packed with artillery shells was arrested by Iraqi police. [Page 17A]

MARYLAND

Hackerman details land deal

Construction magnate Willard J. Hackerman said that it was the Ehrlich administration's idea, not his, to keep his identity secret in discussing his plan to buy St. Mary's County preservation land from the state. Hackerman, the CEO of the Whiting-Turner Contracting Co., also confirmed that he planned to partially develop the parcel. [Page 1a ]

Vacancies stall crime lab work

The processing of trace evidence from nearly 400 crimes has been put on hold at the state police crime lab while officials scramble to replace analysts who have left, leaving the facility unable to pry clues from the hairs, fibers and gunshot residue found at crime scenes. [Page 1b]

Advice rejected on bridge work

By rejecting advice from a subcontractor in January 2002, a state engineer may have contributed to the failure of more than $7 million in concrete work on the Bay Bridge and to the weeks of disruptive lane closings this fall. [Page 1b]

SPORTS

Ravens' Sanders may return

Deion Sanders, the Ravens' highly publicized nickel back, appears close to returning for Sunday's game against the New York Giants after missing four games with an injured foot. Sanders was injured Nov. 7 against the Cleveland Browns. [Page 1C]

Graduation gap widening

The graduation gap between African-American and white student-athletes playing Division I-A football hasn't improved, a study showed, providing more evidence of race disparity at the highest level of college football. [Page 1C]

Players OK tougher testing

Baseball players gave their lawyers the go-ahead to reach an agreement with owners on tougher testing for steroids. After negotiations with management were outlined to the executive board of the players' association, union head Donald Fehr said the board "authorized us to attempt to conclude an agreement consistent with those discussions." [Page 1C]

BUSINESS

Court hears wine-shipping case

You can order everything from used cars to fine works of art online and have them delivered to your doorstep in Maryland - but not wine. That's the case for about half the states in the country with some form of ban on interstate wine shipments. But a case that the Supreme Court began hearing yesterday could change that. [Page 1a ]

Steel union plans drug proposal

The United Steelworkers of America said that it will offer as early as February a prescription drug benefit plan to Bethlehem Steel Corp. retirees who lost their health care benefits nearly 20 months ago. [Page 1d ]

Colgate plans 4,400 job cuts

Colgate-Palmolive Co., maker of Ajax detergent and Irish Spring soap, plans to cut about 4,400 jobs worldwide and close one-third of its 78 factories as it battles rising raw material costs and fiercer competition from the likes of Procter & Gamble Co. [Page 1d]

TODAY

Kanye West up for 10 Grammys

Producer-turned-rapper Kanye West collected a leading 10 Grammy nominations yesterday, including album of the year, for his debut, The College Dropout. Usher and Alicia Keys, who collaborated on the hit "My Boo," followed West with eight nominations each. [Page 1e]

Conference lures ex-campaigners

After an election in which their candidates lost most of the major races from president on down, throngs of ex-campaigners and soon-to-be out-of-work congressional staffers were more than happy to stand in the rain yesterday waiting to get into a job fair in Washington hosted by a Democratic organization. [Page 1e]

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