Sun News Digest

SUN NEWS DIGEST

March 15, 2005

NATIONAL

Mercury regulations introduced

The Bush administration will unveil regulations today requiring coal-fired power plants to reduce mercury air pollution. But environmentalists complain that the new rules are weaker and about a decade slower than the EPA could have required if it had enforced the 1970 Clean Air Act. [Page 1a]

Hughes named to State Dept.

Longtime Bush aide and confidante Karen P. Hughes was tapped yesterday as an assistant secretary of state. The pick signals Bush's desire to demonstrate a new, heightened commitment to improving the United States' global image. [Page 1a]

Audit faults Halliburton in Iraq

Pentagon auditors said Halliburton Corp. might have overcharged by more than $100 million on a contract to deliver fuel to Iraq in the early days of the war, according to a report released yesterday. [Page 3a]

Judge strikes gay-marriage ban

A San Francisco trial-level judge ruled yesterday that California's ban on gay marriage was unconstitutional. He likened the ban to laws requiring racial segregation in schools. [Page 3a]

WORLD

Taiwanese protest Chinese law

Angry Taiwanese lawmakers burned China's flag in protest yesterday and the island denounced a new anti-secession law in Beijing as a "serious provocation." Meanwhile, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao warned the United States to stay on the sidelines of the dispute over the measure. [Page 14a]

Israel sets barrier route

The route of Israel's separation barrier around Jerusalem will encompass large areas claimed by the Palestinians, including their intended capital and the biggest Jewish settlement in the West Bank. The route would also place a holy site in the Palestinian town of Bethlehem on the Israeli side. [Page 15a]

MARYLAND

Mfume to run for Senate

Kweisi Mfume, the former national NAACP president and Baltimore congressman, said yesterday he is a candidate for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Paul S. Sarbanes. [Page 1a]

Data listed on jailed blacks

More than half of Baltimore's African-American men in their 20s are either incarcerated or under criminal justice system supervision, according to a study that is being released today by a Washington-based research organization. [Page 1b]

City to manage school buildings

City agencies will begin managing the day-to-day maintenance of Baltimore's public school buildings no later than next week under an agreement approved yesterday by the city's school board. The agreement also calls for the city to provide an infusion of $3 million in funds. [Page 1b]

SPORTS

Gailey suffers heart attack

Georgia Tech football coach Chan Gailey suffered a heart attack in Atlanta while playing racquetball. The 53-year-old coach underwent a balloon angioplasty and was resting comfortably. [Page 2d]

Gillen steps down at Virginia

Pete Gillen resigned as Virginia basketball coach after seven years in which he took the Cavaliers to the NCAA tournament just one time. In other coaching moves, Buzz Peterson of Tennessee and Steve Lappas of Massachusetts were fired, and former Navy player Doug Wojcik was hired at Tulsa. [Page 3d]

Wizards down Lakers, 95-81

Larry Hughes and Gilbert Arenas each scored 21 points as the Washington Wizards defeated the Los Angeles Lakers, 95-81, at the MCI Center. The Wizards, who broke a two-game losing streak, held Lakers star Kobe Bryant to 18 points. [Page 5d]

BUSINESS

CareFirst nets $179 million in '04

CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, which has promised to become less profitable to boost its nonprofit mission, posted $178.8 million in net income in 2004, according to filings with insurance regulators. That's slightly higher than the $171.3 million in net income CareFirst recorded in 2003. [Page 1e]

JetBlue gains industry buzz

Is JetBlue the next Southwest? The five-year-old New York-based airline has been the talk of the industry of late, landing atop customer satisfaction surveys, including one that was released yesterday, and creating buzz enough to influence an industry full of much-larger rivals. [Page 1e]

TODAY

Glenn Close debuts on `Shield'

Tony and Emmy award-winner Glenn Close makes her debut tonight on FX network's The Shield. Her character, Capt. Monica Rawlings, puts the heat on Michael Chiklis' rogue cop, Vic Mackey. [Page 1c]

Hostage draws notice to book

Ashley Smith, held hostage by the suspect in the Atlanta shooting rampage, has drawn attention to The Purpose-Driven Life by crediting it for helping her. It's the best-selling hardback nonfiction book in history and has been taken up by churches, schools and businesses. [Page 1c]

Scene steamy, not indecent

Federal regulators ruled yesterday there was nothing indecent about a steamy introductory segment in November to ABC's Monday Night Football featuring Desperate Housewives actress Nicollette Sheridan jumping into the arms of football player Terrell Owens. [Page 2c]

TODAY ONLINE

TOURNIQUET Q & A

Read Sun national correspondent Robert Little's answers to your questions about tourniquets used by U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. www.baltimoresun.com/tourniquet

MARYLAND POLITICS

Stay on top of issues affecting you that are being debated during the General Assembly in Annapolis. www.baltimoresun.com/politics

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"You've got one in five young black men living in a cage. I saw that `one in five' figure for Baltimore, and I wanted to cry."

Eric Lotke, of the Justice Policy Institute, on research showing 20 percent of young Baltimore men in jail or prison (Article, Page 1B)

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