Page 2A - STAR - FRIDAY, MARCH 4, 2011
Post office faces
by end of year
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Re- pay about $5.5 billion annually
publican-controlled House opened into an account to fund future re-
the envelope of postal finances on tiree medical benefits.
Wednesday and what it pulled out The requirement was imposed
wasn’t pretty. in 2006, and since then the post
Unless things change, the post office has paid $21 billion into the
office will run out of money by fund and, during the same period,
the end of the fiscal year in Octo- has had a net loss of $20 billion,
ber, Postmaster General Patrick R. explained Ruth Goldway, head of
Donahoe told the House Oversight the independent Postal Regulatory
subcommittee on the postal ser- Commission.
vice. “Prefunding health benefits is
Donahoe said that as of Sept. an incredible burden,” Donahoe
30 his agency will owe the federal said. “In 2007 and 2008 we would
government a payment of $5.5 bil- have had net profits except for the
lion to fund medical costs, in ad- prefunding.”
vance, for future retirees, and in The problem has come before
November it will need to make a Congress in the past, with proposals
$1.3 billion payment for worker’s to reduce or eliminate the prepay- Photo by Brandon Hicks
compensation. ments. No serious injuries in three-car wreck
“The Postal Service will not However, since the post office is A three-vehicle accident on Thursday caused only minor injuries. Officer Doug Combs of the Elizabethton Police Department said
have the cash available to make not part of the federal budget, but the accident on northbound Highway 19E at Broad Street was caused when Ilene Clawson, 75, of Abe Lincoln Drive, Elizabethton,
both of these payments. We need the accounts that receive its retire- driving a Buick Lesabre, rear-ended a red Honda Civic, driven by 18-year-old Andrew Chambers of Siam Road, Elizabethton.
legislation this year to address that ment payments are, that money Chambers’ vehicle then pushed into a Honda Ridgeline, driven by Jeffrey Street of Johnson City. Clawson was charged with drivers
fact,” he said. counts as income for the federal exercise due care.
If it does come down to crunch government. That means that
time, said Donahoe: “We will de-
liver the mail.” Employees will
be paid, as will suppliers, he said.
reducing or eliminating the pay-
ments would appear to increase the
federal budget deficit.
Wis. governor warns of layoffs, talks to Democrats
“The thing we will not do is pay the The dire finances notwith- MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Thou- day and ordered the state to grant could because I do not want to crats in contempt and allowing
federal government.” standing, Donahoe also sought to sands of Wisconsin state workers greater access to the public by next have layoffs,” Walker said. the chamber’s sergeant at arms to
Without some important be upbeat, saying that challenges were bracing for layoff notices today Monday. While Walker said he is actively use police force to detain them if
changes to the law the post office can be recast as opportunities to as Republican Gov. Scott Walker “We decided it would be best for working with some of the Demo- necessary. Senate Majority Leader
“cannot survive as a self-financing make the post office more market- and absent Democrats remained our image to leave tonight peaceful- crats in hopes of striking a deal, Scott Fitzgerald says his orders are
entity,” Donahoe said. responsive. in a standoff over a budget balanc- ly and come back tomorrow,” said he told The Associated Press in an binding only if the senators return
While the post office has been “We think there is plenty of ing bill that would also strip public Matt Rowe, 21, of Madison, carrying interview Thursday that he won’t to Wisconsin.
battered by the recession and the growth available in standard mail, workers of their collective bargain- an armful of blankets after he left compromise on the collective bar- Sen. Chris Larson said they
movement of mail to the Internet, in the package market” and other ing rights. the building. gaining issue or anything that hadn’t done anything illegal and
it has also cut costs sharply by re- new products, he said. In addition Walker said he would issue The protesters’ dramatic depar- saves the state money. couldn’t be arrested.
ducing its work force by 240,000 the agency is exploring electronic 1,500 layoff notices today if at ture capped a day full of develop- “I can’t take any of that off the “There are so many police
people in recent years. Last year it opportunities, he said. least one of the 14 Senate Demo- ments, including Walker’s threat table,” he said. “We cannot tear supporting us, they might have a
cut costs by $3 billion and expects The agency is also seeking to cut crats doesn’t return from Illinois of massive layoffs he said would be apart this budget. We cannot put hard time finding one to bring us
to reduce spending by another $2 costs by closing or consolidating of- to give the Republican majority needed to make up for savings not this burden on local governments. back,” said Miller, one of the AWOL
billion this year, Donahoe said. fices and has proposed eliminating the quorum it needs to vote. Sen- being realized in the stalled bill. But if there are other ways they are Democrats.
But, alone among federal agen- deliveries on Saturdays, while of- ate Republicans voted Thursday Walker says the bill is needed to willing to work with us to find a The Wisconsin Professional Po-
cies, the post office is required to fices would remain open six days. to hold the missing Democrats in ease a deficit that is projected to hit pathway back, I think that’s what lice Association, a union represent-
contempt and force police to bring $137 million by July and $3.6 billion people want.” ing 11,000 law enforcement offi-
Final TVA energy plans for next them back to the Capitol.
The legislation has led to nearly
by mid-2013. His proposal comes up
with the money for this year in part
Democratic Senate Minor-
ity Leader Mark Miller confirmed
cials from across the state, released
a statement from its director, Jim
three weeks of protests — some by forcing state employees to pay for there were talks with Walker, but Palmer, slamming the resolution
two decades to be announced attended by tens of thousands
of union supporters — in and
half the cost of their pensions and
twice their current health care pre-
he did not think they were close to
reaching a deal.
to go after the Democrats.
“The thought of using law
CHATTANOOGA (AP) — The units could be idled and nuclear around the state Capitol, which miums — concessions equivalent The statewide teachers union enforcement officers to exercise
Tennessee Valley Authority will units may be added as early as was completely cleared of demon- to an 8 percent pay cut. and state workers unions have said force in order to achieve a politi-
release its final plan today for 2018. strators late Thursday for the first With the labor bill stalled, they would agree to the benefit con- cal objective is insanely wrong and
meeting power needs in the next The plan will next go before time in 17 nights after a judge Walker said he has to issue layoff cessions — as long as they retain Wisconsin sorely needs reasonable
two decades. the TVA board. ordered the building closed during notices starting today so the state collective bargaining rights. solutions and not potentially dan-
A draft assessment suggests TVA, the country’s largest non-business hours. can start to realize the $30 million But Walker argues that move gerous political theatrics,” Palmer
the plans will likely include more public utility, supplies power to The final 50 or so protesters left savings he had assumed would is necessary to deal with $1 billion said.
nuclear power production and about 9 million people in Ten- peacefully about two hours after come from the concessions. The in cuts to school districts and local A memo provided by private at-
less reliance on coal. nessee, Alabama, Mississippi, the judge’s order, which also said layoffs wouldn’t be effective for 31 governments that he proposed sep- torney Jim Troupis, who was hired
The draft plan, released in Kentucky, Georgia, North Caro- the state unconstitutionally limited days, and Walker said he could re- arately as part of his budget plan for by the Senate Republicans and
September, said more coal-fired lina and Virginia. access to the building since Mon- scind them if the bill passed in the the next two years. He says schools often works with the GOP, said the
meantime. and local governments would have state Constitution gives them au-
All state workers, except those a tough time making the necessary thority to act to compel attendance
at prisons, state hospitals and other cuts if they have to negotiate with under its rules.
facilities open around the clock, unions. Once the senators do return,
& would be potential layoff targets,
The Republican leader of the
state Senate signed orders Thurs-
Fitzgerald said they could face
reprimand, censure or even expul-
“I pushed it off as long as I day finding the 14 missing Demo- sion.
ELIZABETHTON VFW BANQUET HALL
Family Dollar board rejects investor takeover bid
MATTHEWS, N.C. (AP) — that would significantly dilute his stake in the company last
TH Family Dollar Stores Inc. on shares if a takeover attempt pro- summer, saying the stock was
SATURDAY, MARCH 5
ELIZABETHTON VFW BANQUET HALL Thursday said its board rejected ceeds. undervalued. He said he met with
a takeover bid by an activist in- Nelson Peltz’s Trian Fund in senior management to discuss
12 - 3 PM
SATURDAY, MARCH 5TH vestor, saying it “substantially
undervalues the company.”
February offered $55 to $60 per
share, or about $6.99 billion, for
the company’s direction. The
Trian Fund bought more Family
12 - 3 PM
SPONSOREDBY The discount retailer also ad-
opted a shareholder rights plan,
Peltz, Family Dollar’s largest
Dollar shares in January.
Trian owns large stakes in a
THE ELIZABETHTON VFW
commonly called a “poison pill,” shareholder, started increasing variety of major American busi-
nesses including upscale jew-
with live entertainment by eler Tiffany’s & Co., food com-
HAPPY 50TH BIRTHDAY TODAY TO
in conjunction with
THE ELIZABETHTON VFW pany H.J. Heinz Co. and fast-food
The Watts Dancers, BloodKin and JB & Friends.
CARTER CO./ELIZABETHTON chain Wendy’s/Arby’s Group Inc.
in conjunction with
It owns about 8 percent of Family
ANIMAL SHELTER BUILDING COMMITTEE Dollar shares.
CARTER CO./ELIZABETHTON Family Dollar’s board said
ANIMAL SHELTER BUILDING COMMITTEE A SWEET & WONDERFUL WIFE, LOVING DAUGHTER,
WONDERFUL AUNT AND FRIEND
that pursuit of a sale is not in
the best interests of shareholders,
Browse the collection of fine items donated by area merchants & private
parties. Register your bid and take home a treasure.
Items with a retail value over $250.00 will be sold by “ LIVE AUCTION ”
and that the best way to deliver
value to shareholders is to con-
Browse the collection of fine items donated by area merchants & private tinue implementing the com-
parties. Register your bid and take home a treasure. pany’s strategic plan announced
Items with a retail value over $250.00 will be sold by “ LIVE AUCTION ” in September.
Have a bowl of homemade chili, a hot cup of coffee or cold tea.
$5.00 Tax Deductible Attendance Fee AGE 65? YOU NEED
A HEARING TEST
ALL PROCEEDS WILL hot cup of coffee
Have a bowl of homemade chili, a BE DONATED TO or cold tea.
$5.00 Tax Deductible Attendance Fee
Dr. Daniel R.
THE CARTER COUNTY/ELIZABETHTON Schumaier
ALL PROCEEDS WILL BE DONATED TO
ANIMAL SHELTER BUILDING FUND MAYNARD & SHARON, RICK, CHRISTY,
THE CARTER COUNTY/ELIZABETHTON
www.newshelterforcartercounty.com BETH, ALL YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS &
ANIMAL SHELTER BUILDING FUND THE APPLE OF YOUR EYES
106 E. Watauga Ave.
www.newshelterforcartercounty.com McKinley & Malana www.johnsoncityhearingcenter.com