Caldwell's Augusta
When literary lion Erskine Caldwell sat down to write the novels that would place him in the pantheon of American literature, he looked back to the region he called home as his muse. He spent his formative years in Wrens, Ga., Augusta and the rural communities in between, and his experiences there would provide the fodder for works considered to be classics of American literature.

Finding recognition

Emotions, and other things, bared in 'Curse'
Deep in the third act of the Augusta Theatre Company's production of Sam Shepard's Curse of the Starving Class, Alex Townsend strides boldly on stage and straight into local theater history. Naked.

Funky time

Funky time
Casting an eye back to the days when sampling meant a little pink spoon at the ice cream parlor and sequencing meant prioritizing your day, the United We Funk All-Stars tour features acts that thrived and survived before computer technology asserted its influence on music.

Emotions, and other things, bared in 'Curse'

Ramblin' Rhodes: Fan Fair becomes too trying on fans
The thousands attending the International Country Music Fan Fair next week in Nashville had better take a good look. It should be the last one held at the state fairgrounds.

Young Eagles get a chance to fly
The local chapter of the Experimental Aircraft Association is offering local youngsters a chance to change their altitude.

Keys to success

Keys to success
For the organizers of the Josef Hofmann Piano Competition, winners and losers aren't a priority.

Finding recognition
You won't find the work of Freeman and Cora Schoolcraft hanging in New York galleries or in the collections of any art museums. There aren't chapters dedicated to either of them in art-history texts, and their contributions remain unrecorded in the annals of American art.

Caldwell's Augusta

Baker leads Jackets to win

Soaking up atmostphere heads agenda

Braves notes: Chipper is day-to-day

Tourists turn back Augusta

Former Evans standout tries to impress Jays

What Stone lacks in size, he has in will

Toronto slams Braves

Sosa, Baylor make peace

Sosa fires back in Cubs' war of words

Rocker says he might retire

Rocker not exactly missed by Braves

Local player key for Clemson

Speeches punctuate graduation

Business briefs

Assembly considers licensing home builders

Few know of choices, poll finds
ATLANTA - When told that more than 160 companies offer local phone service in Georgia, Anthony Pollard was surprised.

Business briefs

Assembly considers licensing home builders
ATLANTA - Consumers looking for assurances are the reason legislators are considering a requirement that home builders pass a test, be licensed and provide a written warranty.

Comcast will move offices

Business briefs
NEW YORK - The Dow Jones industrial average fell sharply Thursday after Procter & Gamble surprised Wall Street with an earnings warning and a management shake-up.

P&G restructures, selects new leader

P&G restructures, selects new leader
CINCINNATI - Procter & Gamble Co. overhauled its top management Thursday, replacing top executive Durk I. Jager after a series of disappointing earnings results that have led to a profound stock slump at the maker of Tide, Crest and Pampers.

Comcast will move offices
Comcast Corp. announced Thursday it will build a new office in northwest Augusta that will house nearly all its operations under one roof.

Business briefs
NEW YORK - Technology stocks closed higher Wednesday after a Goldman Sachs analyst predicted IBM would have a strong year.

Few know of choices, poll finds

Boral Bricks to add facility

Boral Bricks to add facility
Boral Bricks announced Wednesday that Augusta will be the home of its new paver-brick facility.

Red China wrong to ban pop singer

Hell looks better

Fish story improves

Incumbent best for Aiken Co. chair

FEHBP is only vets' care that works

School buses perilously dilapidated

Taking us for a ride

`Keep the faith'

Carville turns TV viewer off

Moral behavior means choosing right

Traditional values equate to decency

NAACP should put past behind it

Letter writer 'clueless' on budget

Bush visit illustrates differences between presidential contenders

Baptists & coaches: the difference

Beauty for a day
Day lilies are quickly taking the place of roses as the bloom of the South. The day lilies' blooms last for only a day, hence the name, which translates to mean ''beauty for a day.'' Few perennials are as hearty, heat-tolerant and pest-free as day lilies.

In the know
LOST ITS LUSTER?: Finally - parents may say - interest is waning in the Pokemon phenomenon. ''The magic is over,'' said Robert Thompson, a professor at Syracuse University and president of the International Popular Culture Association.

Garden tours planned
Several garden tours and a flower show are among the gardening events scheduled for this weekend.

Close-knit community
Summerville residents turned out by the hundreds at the Augusta Woman's Club on Milledge Road on May 5, proving again that their neighborhood is unique.

Problems abound in gardens
Today I'll address some of the problems I've been hearing about in the vegetable garden.

Capsules
Don't touch that dial. Bacteria and viruses from germ-coated telephones easily smear onto a person's hands, new tests have found. And microbes clinging to faucet handles and sponges may be just as eager for a change in geography

Flyers tab Ramsay as new coach

Stars stay alive with goal in 3rd OT

Lambert plans return to Lynx

Speeches punctuate graduation
I've attended a few graduation ceremonies in recent weeks and was surprised at how many speakers made a point to state, ``I doubt if any of you will remember what I say here today.''

No decision in double homicide case
District Attorney Danny Craig has not decided whether he will seek the death penalty in the 1998 shooting death of an Evans couple.

In the know

Beauty for a day

Close-knit community

Capsules

Hit-and-run victim could go home soon
Officials at Medical College of Georgia Children's Medical Center have informed the family of a 4-year-old hit-and-run victim that she might be able to return home as early as next week.

Officials urge care for fires

SRS gets bonus, fine

Man gets probation in 7-year-old's death

County's upgrade lacking
AIKEN - Aiken County's new $1 million communications system is not doing the job it was ordered to do.

State law keeps flag on schools

Hospitals combine strengths

af2 notes: League wants to attract more fans

Internet romance ends in arrest
HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. - A Charleston man looking for romance was carjacked after a girl he met on the Internet allegedly set him up for a date with a gunman.

A face in the crowd

City looks to land major airlines
The community of Amarillo, Texas, thought airline service so important that its residents approved a special tax to subsidize American Airlines operating expenses at the Amarillo airport.

Across the area

A face in the crowd
Cross Creek High School graduate Jessica Lynn Hammons smiles up at her family who watch from the stands as she completes her high school career at the Augusta-Richmond County Civic Center during commencement ceremonies.

Officer, educator honored

Grocery tax threatens budget
AIKEN - The budget dispute between South Carolina's Democratic governor and Republican lawmakers intensified Thursday, raising questions whether state government will shut down July 1 in the midst of a ``food'' fight.

Internet romance ends in arrest

Officials stay busy with fires

County's upgrade lacking

State GOP critical of Gore ads

Water use nears capacity

Officials stay busy with fires
Small, unrelated wildfires have kept southeast Georgia forestry rangers scrambling during the past few days to keep a bad fire situation from getting worse.

Across the area

Man gets 84 years for abusing woman
Four days after his 33rd birthday, Carl Sloan began an 84-year prison sentence.

Musicians visit Dalai Lama
ATHENS, Ga. - It was an unlikely meeting between East and West. Thousands of mil

Officials urge care for fires
With a moderate drought now in full effect in the Augusta area, Georgia Forestry officials are asking residents to be cautious with their outdoor burning.

Schools prepare for change in testing
Richmond County school officials say they are unsure how a new standardized test differs from the one the state has used for the past 15 years.

Hopefuls report on funding
Going into next month's Democratic Primary, Richmond County sheriff candidate Ronnie Strength has received nearly 11 times more in campaign contributions than the other two Democratic candidates and lone Republican combined.

GBI: Sex offender left off list
An Augusta man convicted of sexual battery of a minor last week already should have been listed on the Sex Offender Registry, sources said.

Officer, educator honored
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. - The state DARE Association named an Aiken resident ``DARE Officer of the Year'' at its annual conference Thursday.

Local NAACP wants state flag removed from schools
Augusta's NAACP president will present a resolution to the Richmond County school board tonight asking that members replace the state flags above local schools with ones that do not bear a Confederate symbol.

Grocery tax threatens budget

Water use nears capacity
It's already been a long summer for Billy Clayton. And with water use peaking above the county's production ability last weekend, it's not getting any better for Columbia County's Water and Sewer Services director.

City looks to land major airlines

State pioneers with Web site

Man gets 84 years for abusing woman

Few faces final vote by D.C. council

GBI: Sex offender left off list

Official undecided about death penalty
District Attorney Danny Craig said it is too soon to decide whether to seek the death penalty against two men charged in the 1998 shooting death of an Evans couple.

Radiation treatment will not cut patients

Few faces final vote by D.C. council
While some Washington City Council members have expressed concerns about Ronnie Few's connection to a local grand jury investigation, other officials in the nation's capital are confident the Augusta fire chief will come out of the probe unscathed.

Schrenko scathingly reviews education reform law

City postpones decisive vote on bond marketers
Augusta commissioners heard the pitches of three financial teams that want to market the city's proposed $90 million water revenue bond issue, but were one vote shy of choosing one Wednesday.

Palmer gets life sentence

Radiation treatment will not cut patients
John Bush had just been wheeled out of brain surgery Wednesday, but he still managed to quote James Brown.

State GOP critical of Gore ads
ATLANTA - A series of so-called ``issue ads'' on behalf of Al Gore that began running Thursday in Georgia and 14 other states breaks the vice president's pledge not to be the first presidential hopeful to spend unregulated soft money, the state Republican chairman said Thursday.

Graduate gratitude
JEFF JANOWSKI/STAFFGraduate gratitudeJohn S. Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School graduate Lodriguez Vontrel Murray hugged Principal Beverly Barnhart after being awarded his diploma Wednesday.

Ossabaw Island obtains grant to replace roof
SAVANNAH - An $84,000 grant will be used to put a new roof on the main house on the Ossabaw Island State Heritage Preserve.

Across the area
District Attorney Danny Craig said it is too soon to decide whether to seek the death penalty against two men charged in the 1998 shooting death of an Evans couple.

State pioneers with Web site
ATHENS, Ga. - A project getting under way at the University of Georgia will be a kind of poster child at a National Endowment for the Humanities meeting today - the $2.3 million New Georgia Encyclopedia, which aims to be the first such publication created with cyberspace in mind.

Tax assessment increase angers county residents

Hospitals combine strengths
SAVANNAH - Effingham Hospital is still struggling financially, and it is fighting to woo back the 80 percent of prospective patients who instead choose Savannah hospitals.

Pupils' puppets teach virtues
While some pupils are spending their first week of summer in the sun or at the pool, Chris D. Smith is already working toward next school year.

Aiken asked to cut back
AIKEN - Despite a statewide drought, Aiken has no serious water problems - yet.

Equestrians bid for racing field
AIKEN - They're doing it ``the old-fashioned way, with a handshake between friends,'' but two prominent members of Aiken's horse community are negotiating to buy Ford Conger Field, where famed steeplechases are run each spring and fall.

Palmer gets life sentence
Twenty-two years ago, he raped a woman. Last summer, he tried to carry a teen-age girl out of her home in the middle of the night.

Officials investigate hit-and-run
AIKEN - An Aiken County deputy was recovering at home Wednesday after a driver fleeing a possible burglary sideswiped his patrol car.

Tax assessment increase angers county residents
Judie Kremin is familiar with sticker shock.

Schools prepare for change in testing

Man gets probation in 7-year-old's death
Patricia Cleveland asked a Superior Court judge for leniency Thursday in sentencing the Grovetown man convicted in the December hit-and-run death of her son.

Pupils' puppets teach virtues

State law keeps flag on schools
Richmond County school board officials said Thursday that state law prohibits them from removing the state flag from school grounds as requested by the local chapter of the NAACP.

No decision in double homicide case

Fire chief reports to grand jury
Less than a week after being nominated to become the next fire chief in Washington, Ronnie Few on Thursday was again in front of a special grand jury that is investigating the entire county government.

Graduate gratitude

Board approves MRI center
There soon will be an open war in Augusta to scan you.

School board passes preliminary budget
Richmond County school board members tentatively approved a $195 million budget Thursday that includes additional secretaries, and art, music and special education teachers.

Across the area
BARNWELL - Barnwell County authorities are asking for the public's help in the case of a Snelling man found dead last weekend along U.S. Highway 64.

Local NAACP wants state flag removed from schools

Schrenko scathingly reviews education reform law
SAVANNAH - Republican State Superintendent of Schools Linda Schrenko found an opening to attack Democratic Gov. Roy Barnes' education reform law, the A-Plus Education Reform Act of 2000, while speaking at a luncheon in Savannah on Wednesday.

Equestrians bid for racing field

Superintendent endorses opponent of governor's bill
HARLEM - Georgia State Superintendent of Schools Linda Schrenko on Thursday continued what she calls her campaign against the governor's education reform bill by endorsing her first political candidate.

Fire chief reports to grand jury

Superintendent endorses opponent of governor's bill

Board approves MRI center

City postpones decisive vote on bond marketers

SRS gets bonus, fine
Savannah River Site's top contractor earned an $11.4 million bonus for its recent performance at the federal nuclear-weapons site, but deficiencies cost the company millions more.

Jackson's calm leads Lakers' storm

Nemcova, Melvin lead Rockers

Jordan awaits Hamilton's decision

Lakers trounce Pacers

After shooting 1-for-16, Miller rediscovers hate

49ers' QB Young decides to retire

Defense rests in murder trial

Mr. Byron Quarles
EDGEFIELD, S.C. - Mr. Byron B. Quarles, 60, of U.S. Highway 25 North, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, in Augusta.

Mr. Daniel Booker
Mr. Daniel Edward Booker, 43, of Jefferson Street, died Saturday, June 3, 2000, at Doctors Hospital.

Mrs. Aletha Gregory
ATLANTA - Mrs. Aletha Gregory died Sunday, June 4, 2000, at South Fulton County Hospital.

Mrs. Ezma Rourke
ANNISTON, Ala. - Mrs. Ezma R. Nabb Rourke, 83, of Kalyn Drive, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at her residence.

Mr. Eddie Aycock
LINCOLNTON, Ga. - Mr. Eddie Lewis Aycock, 50, of Kelley Street, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at Wills Memorial Hospital, Washington.

Mr. Laurie Gilliam
BEECH ISLAND - Mr. Laurie B. Gilliam, 89, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at Trident Medical Center, Charleston.

Mr. Tony Martin
JOHNSTON, S.C. - Mr. Tony Eugene ``Snow'' Martin, 44, of Edisto Street, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at University Hospital, Augusta.

Mrs. Mary Crowder
THOMSON - Mrs. Mary Helen Crowder, of Hawes Street, died Thursday, June 1, 2000, at Doctors Hospital, Augusta.

Mrs. Cecelia Harris
Mrs. Cecelia Harris, of Rosier Road, died Friday, June 2, 2000, at University Hospital.

Esmeralda Leon
HEPHZIBAH - Esmeralda Leon, infant daughter of Jose and Cecilia Leon, died Monday, June 5, 2000, at Medical College of Georgia Hospital, Augusta.

Mr. Clarence Thompkins Jr.
Mr. Clarence Thompkins Jr., 77, of Wheeler Road, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at his residence.

Mr. Joseph Simpson
Mr. Joseph Eldridge Simpson, 86, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at Medical College of Georgia Hospital.

Mr. George Bean
SANDERSVILLE, Ga. - Mr. George Mack Bean, 65, of Ridgeland Drive, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at his residence.

Mr. Jesse Weathersbee
WILLISTON, S.C. - Mr. Jesse Blease ``Bub'' Weathersbee, 87, of David Bridge Road, died Saturday, June 3, 2000, at Mattie C. Hall Nursing Home.

Mr. Chester Glover
STAFFORD, Va. - Mr. Chester Frank Glover, 83, of Harbour Drive, died Friday, June 2, 2000, at Mary Washington Hospital, Fredricksburg.

Mr. William Sacre
WHIDBEY ISLAND, Wash. - Mr. William Ambrose Sacre, 73, died Wednesday, May 31, 2000.

Mr. David Emmette
NORTH AUGUSTA - Mr. David Thomas Emmette, 39, of Silver Fox Circle, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at University Hospital, Augusta.

Mrs. Charleen Brega
NORTH AUGUSTA - Mrs. Charleen Steinmetz Brega, 69, died Saturday, May 27, 2000, at her residence.

Mrs. Ella Brown
Mrs. Ella Hughes Brown, 82, of Acorn Road, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at Medical College of Georgia Hospital.

Mrs. Miley Williams
ELMONT, N.Y. - Mrs. Miley Williams, 99, of Emily Avenue, died Thursday, June 1, 2000, at Franklin General Hospital, Valley Stream.

Mr. Eddie Aycock
LINCOLNTON, Ga. - Mr. Eddie Lewis Aycock, 50, of Kelley Street, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at Wills Memorial Hospital, Washington.

Mrs. Lucille Maddox
Mrs. Lucille C. Maddox, 71, of Hickman Road, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at her residence.

Miss Dorothy McGruder
LOUISVILLE, Ga. - Miss Dorothy McGruder, 49, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at Doctors Hospital, Augusta.

Mr. Robert Billingsley
GREENSBORO, Ga. - Mr. Robert L. Billingsley, 40, died Monday, June 5, 2000.

Mr. George Brown
Mr. George Oliver Brown, 79, of Martinez, died Monday, June 5, 2000.

Mrs. Climmie Sturgis
GROVETOWN - Mrs. Climmie Lee Sturgis, 75, of Katherine Street, died Sunday, June 4, 2000, at Doctors Hospital, Augusta.

Mr. Willie Armstrong
SANDERSVILLE, Ga. - Mr. Willie Armstrong, 72, of Lovett Street, died Monday, June 5, 2000, at his residence.

Mrs. Hazel Hubert
WARRENTON, Ga. - Mrs. Mabel Cummings Hubert, 81, of Oak Street, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at Medical College of Georgia Hospital, Augusta.

Mr. Henry Decker Jr.
TENNILLE, Ga. - Mr. Henry John ``Hank'' Decker Jr., 86, of Mount Gilead Church Road, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, in Summerville.

Ms. Elizabeth McCall
Ms. Elizabeth R. ``Libby'' McCall, 53, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at Doctors Hospital.

Mrs. Elizabeth Ervin
KEYSVILLE, Ga. - Mrs. Elizabeth Ervin, of Georgia Highway 80 West, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000.

Mrs. Nannie Tullis
Mrs. Nannie Dove Tullis, 78, died Sunday, June 4, 2000, at Windermere Health and Rehabilitation Center.

Mr. Charles Dorsett
SHELBYVILLE, Ind. - Mr. Charles C. Dorsett, 86, of Hale Road, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at his residence.

Mr. Melvin Morrison Sr.
Mr. Melvin Richard ``Rich'' Morrison Sr., 71, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centers.

Mrs. Gertrude Tincher
JACKSON - Mrs. Gertrude Dolin Tincher, 83, died Monday, June 5, 2000, at Aiken Regional Medical Centers, Aiken.

Mrs. Emma Jones
AIKEN - Mrs. Emma Irving Jones, 75, of Westmont Drive, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at Pepper Hill Nursing Home.

Miss Nickey Smith
HEPHZIBAH - Miss Nickey B. Smith, of Woodlake Road, died Saturday, June 3, 2000, at Burke County Hospital, Waynesboro.

Mr. Willie Perry Jr.
AIKEN - Mr. Willie Perry Jr., 43, of Barnwell Avenue, died Friday, June 2, 2000, at his residence.

Mr. Marvin Peed
STATESBORO, Ga. - Mr. Marvin Peed, 78, died Thursday, June 8, 2000, at Bulloch Memorial Hospital.

Mrs. Earline Brown
ALLENDALE, S.C. - Mrs. Earline Morrell Brown, 53, of Hampton Grove, died Tuesday, June 6, 2000, at Allendale County Hospital, Fairfax.

Mr. John Graham
Mr. John D. Graham, of First Avenue, died Monday, June 5, 2000, at the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Centers.

Mrs. Alma Grant
NEW YORK - Mrs. Alma Miley Grant, 95, died Saturday, June 3, 2000, at Jacobi Hospital.

Mrs. Elease Newsome
NORTH AUGUSTA - Mrs. Elease Wooden Newsome, 71, of Metz Drive, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at her residence.

Mrs. Isabell Sapp
Mrs. Isabell Williams Sapp, 91, of Goldenrod Road, died Monday, June 5, 2000, at University Hospital.

Mr. Robert Reese
Mr. Robert Reese, of Primrose Drive, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at University Hospital.

Mrs. Connie Williams
Mrs. Connie Taylor Williams, of Naples Drive, died Sunday, June 4, 2000, at her residence.

Mrs. Berta Norris
GIBSON, Ga. - Mrs. Berta C. Norris, 88, died Thursday, June 8, 2000, at McDuffie County Regional Medical Center, Thomson.

Mr. John Spratlin Jr.
LINCOLNTON, Ga. - Mr. John Webb Spratlin Jr., 72, of Humphrey Street, died Wednesday, June 7, 2000, at his residence.

Mrs. Sallie Wingard
NORTH AUGUSTA - Mrs. Sallie Johnson Wingard, 97, of Crestview Drive, died Thursday, June 8, 2000, at her residence.

Mr. William Sacre

Mr. Henry Decker Jr.

Mrs. Elease Newsome

Mr. Tony Martin

Mrs. Mary Crowder

Mr. Robert Reese

Mrs. Emma Jones

Mrs. Earline Brown

Mr. John Spratlin Jr.

Mrs. Ella Brown

Mr. Charles Dorsett

Mrs. Isabell Sapp

Mrs. Aletha Gregory

Mrs. Gertrude Tincher

Mr. Joseph Simpson

Mrs. Berta Norris

Mrs. Nannie Tullis

Mr. Robert Billingsley

Mr. Willie Perry Jr.

Mr. Daniel Booker

Mrs. Connie Williams

Mr. Byron Quarles

Mr. Willie Armstrong

Miss Dorothy McGruder

Mr. Marvin Peed

Mr. Melvin Morrison Sr.

Mrs. Charleen Brega

Mr. George Brown

Esmeralda Leon

Mrs. Elizabeth Ervin

Mr. Laurie Gilliam

Mr. Clarence Thompkins Jr.

Mrs. Ezma Rourke

Mrs. Hazel Hubert

Mrs. Lucille Maddox

Mrs. Cecelia Harris

Mrs. Miley Williams

Miss Nickey Smith

Mr. Jesse Weathersbee

Patients' rights support a wake-up call for GOP
(Editor's note: The author, Scott Reed, was 1996 presidential candidate Bob Dole's campaign manager.)

Baptists & coaches: the difference
Patrick Barkley (letter, June 3) asks why ``... we get so upset about the fundamentalists'' and not about great coaches extolling the virtues of football.Susan Kinney, Waynesboro

American terrorists bent on carnage
The Rev. Mark Estep was officiating at the funeral of Dana Cooper and her 2-year-old son Anthony when a baby began crying. Rev. Estep paused and then announced, ``Let that baby cry. It sounds like music today.'' Richard Amundson, Augusta

`Keep the faith'
``A grateful nation keeps faith with the old soldier. It stays true to its obligations to the veteran. Too often, this duty is neglected. Too often, in Washington, those who served in the military are remembered only on Veterans Day.''

Red China wrong to ban pop singer
This is a follow-up development in response to Phil Kent's May 25 column on Taiwan: Alice Wang, Atlanta

Moral behavior means choosing right
Kevin A. Palmer (letter, June 1) is right: The Boy Scouts are not God's chosen people. Unfortunately he seems to be confused about the difference between morality and perfection. Sam Fulton, Martinez

Patients' rights support a wake-up call for GOP
(Editor's note: The author, Scott Reed, was 1996 presidential candidate Bob Dole's campaign manager.)

Hell looks better
In response to R.E. Sutherland's letter of May 25, in which she condemns all of us who do not think as she does, I can think of no worse damnation than to be stuck for eternity with Mrs. Sutherland and her sanctimonious, naive, judgmental cohorts. Nancy Wilds, Aiken

Carville turns TV viewer off
I have been watching Meet The Press on TV. If I had not been for getting rid of Bill and Hillary Clinton, this program would have cemented my desire. Robert Calloway, Augusta

Letter writer 'clueless' on budget
I read with interest the May 6 letter from L. Boyd attacking our legislators for their votes in favor of the Georgia state budget. Jackie McIlwain, Martinez

Taking us for a ride
Federal and state governments, including Georgia, are pushing hard for more public transit, not just within metropolitan areas, but between them. Their hearts are in the right place; they seek to reduce the number of cars on the roads for smoother (and safer) traffic flows and to curb air pollution caused by high-volume commuter traffic.

Sign anti-voyeur bill
New technologies spawn new ways to engage in old crimes. Peeping Toms and voyeurs have been having all kinds of perverse fun using video cameras to eavesdrop on other people's lives.

Incumbent best for Aiken Co. chair
On June 13 Aiken County must vote for the individual who will inevitably become our County Council chairman. I recommend the tried and true incumbent Ronnie Young who has served on our county council faithfully since 1990. David A. Towles, Beech Island

Enforce sign law
Beautifying Augusta should be a high priority, a citywide effort, which is why we embrace a plan developed by a host of officials, both elected and civic, and formally proposed last week by the planning commission.

School buses perilously dilapidated
I have kept up with the Richmond County school bus issue. I have gone to the local transportation department and looked at the buses. I've talked with drivers and mechanics. Rhonda Gaines, Hephzibah

Bush visit illustrates differences between presidential contenders
On the same morning Republican presidential candidate George W. Bush is in Augusta for a World War II D-Day celebration, introduced by a highly-decorated Marine war hero, Democratic presidential candidate Al Gore is again lying about the use of unlimited ``soft money'' and being criticized by a tenant for a failure to make needed repairs on her poor family's rental home.

Louisville's airport growth a debacle
The Augusta Regional Airport draws only compliments from passengers I meet. But if you're determined to spoil that, show some innovative thinking. Barbara Stober Shaffer, Blythe

Candidate wrong to imply support
Jay Lacy, a candidate for Edgefield County Council, made a mass mailing to the 5th District (Merriwether/Westside) this week. He used letters to the editor from two members of the Concerned Citizens for Edgefield County, implying we support him. Bernadette Hudson, North Augusta

NAACP should put past behind it
I took great offense at Roy DeLamotte's June 5 letter. I am a Jew and my family lived through the Holocaust. I wasn't even born when World War II was fought, but my family did not raise me to hate Germans. My family did teach me the history of my people. Joe Nirenberg, Beech Island

A victory for parents
The U.S. Supreme Court came out in favor of parents' rights Monday in a decision that keeps states from forcing parents to allow grandparents access to their grandchildren.

FEHBP is only vets' care that works
Once again Army Echoes has published its newsletter listing health care as the top issue for the Retiree Council. The article raises the same old red herrings, laced with excuses for maintaining the status quo, while pretending to improve things. Boyd Simmons, Augusta

Traditional values equate to decency
Three cheers for columnist Mona Charen and Dr. Laura Schlessinger for ''expressing traditional views.'' I call those ''traditional views'' decency. Einar Waldun, Hephzibah

Elementary grad event too long
Recently I attended a graduation ceremony for one of our local elementary schools. The graduation class contained almost 90 children with 99 percent present. Bobbie Burke, Grovetown, Ga.

Fish story improves
The tentative agreement worked out between Fort Gordon and the Army Corps of Engineers as to when the fort's semi-public Lake Thurmond recreation area can be used for tournament fishing holds promise of solving a difficult problem.

Belmont Stakes is wide open

Garage should be off-limits to fans

Racing facts: Kmart 400

Overtime: Coble advances to semifinals

Pirated souvenirs are booming business

Labonte rolls into Michigan

Overtime: Norman handles Safin in French Open

Hudson's first fight to be televised

Fisherman's luck makes four happy

Schooling fish won't hit? Try teensy lures

EPA bans common pesticide
WASHINGTON - Citing health risks to children, the Environmental Protection Agency today banned one of the most common pesticides for use in gardens and homes, while curtailing its application in agriculture.

Judge's ruling in Microsoft case
The text of the memorandum and order attached to U.S. District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson's ruling in the Microsoft antitrust case.

Appeal uncertain for Microsoft case
SEATTLE -- Microsoft Corp. expects a warmer welcome from a higher court when it appeals a federal judge's order to split up its software empire. But it is no sure bet.

Appeal uncertain for Microsoft case

EPA bans common pesticide

Judge's ruling in Microsoft case