Originally created 06/25/02

Across the southeast



Administrator pleads guilty to embezzling

STUART, Va. -A suspended top administrator for Henry County pleaded guilty Monday to stealing more than $778,000 in public money from the poor manufacturing community where he ran the local government.

Sid Clower, 50, pleaded guilty to three counts of embezzlement in Patrick County Circuit Court.

He could get up to 60 years in prison when he is sentenced by Circuit Judge Martin F. Clark Jr.

Church leaders object to lottery proposal

RALEIGH, N.C. -North Carolina churches shouldn't be taken lightly in their opposition to a lottery referendum or other numbers-game legislation, religious leaders said Monday.

Citing what they call the lottery's ill effects on the poor and society's work ethic, the leaders said they will urge churchgoers to oppose state-sponsored gambling.

"We are speaking to them. We are mobilizing," said Jim Royston, the executive director of the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina, the state's largest denomination with 1.2 million people.

Wandering ashes find home in Pennsylvania

STUART, Fla. -The last of a shipload of incinerator ash shunned by ports and landfills around the world for 16 years is expected to be in its final resting place back home in Pennsylvania by early July, Florida officials said Monday.

The ash came from a Philadelphia incinerator in 1985. After its failed worldwide cruise, 2,500 tons have sat for the past two years in a rusting barge across the street from a residential neighborhood.

Environmental regulators in Florida and Pennsylvania struck an agreement earlier this month to move the ash by truck and train to a landfill in Franklin County, Pa., about 120 miles west of where it was first produced.

Colleges adopt new fund-raising approach

RALEIGH, N.C. -Taking a lesson from Emily Post, leaders of North Carolina's community colleges are using thank-you notes, not veiled threats, to get funding from legislators.

Last week, 75 students and instructors were at the General Assembly singing songs and heaping praise on senators.

Despite the warm and fuzzy approach, community college leaders still want lawmakers to understand that they need more money. Years of unmet budget requests coupled with soaring enrollment have left the 59-campus system short of supplies and unable to serve all the students who apply.