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NEW YORK -- High school outsiders of the world, take note: There's a new off-Broadway musical just for you.

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With draft day rapidly approaching for fantasy baseball leagues, decision time is here for players and commissioners awaiting the most anticipated event of the year for the "Roto-geeks" of the world.

Evans gets past rival in eighth

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The Cross Creek baseball team has fallen into a disturbing pattern, and coach Bob Polewski doesn't like it one bit.

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Evans catcher Michael Armstrong wasn't nervous or anything.

Chronicle 2003 draft preview

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ALBANY, Ga. -- The South Atlantic League has voted to allow the South Georgia Waves to move from Albany to Columbus in time for the upcoming 2003 season.

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Here is The Augusta Chronicle 2003 draft preview, with rankings at each position, based on those who played at least 20 games at those positions in 2002, except for rookies and other players who had abbreviated seasons. This list takes into account projected statistics for 2003 - including home runs, RBI, average, stolen bases and runs scored for hitters; wins, ERA, strikeouts, saves and WHIP for pitchers.

Fantasy Baseball: Fantasy beginning gets a new start

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Robert and Casey Spruill of Augusta announce the birth of a daughter, Cecilia Nakiesha Spruill, Saturday, March 15, 2003, at the Medical College of Georgia Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. Jack Spruill of Hoschton, Ga., and Mr. and Mrs. Hermie McMillan of Stone Mountain, Ga.

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Lewis and Tami Luke of Harlem announce the birth of a daughter, Lauren Elizabeth Luke, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2003, at University Hospital. Grandparents are Donny and Diane Gray of Augusta, Charles and Robbie Curry of Huntsville, Ala., and Marvin and Rachel Luke of Grovetown.

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Kenneth E. and Valerie L. Green of Lincolnton, Ga., announce the birth of a daughter, Grace Lucille Green, Monday, March 10, 2003, at Doctors Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. George E. Fanning of Harlem, Mrs. Floyd K. Green of Grovetown and the late Floyd K. Green.

Brennan Gene Johnson

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Henry and Tamatha Ruff of Grovetown announce the birth of a son, Collin Alexander Ruff, Monday, March 10, 2003, at St. Joseph Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. John Gabriel and Sophie Morris, all of Evans, and the late Mr. and Mrs. Henry Ruff.

Robert Connor Malone

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Charles Alexander Coleman and Michelle Victoria Bates, both of Augusta, announce the birth of a son, Hunter Regan Coleman, Sunday, March 2, 2003, at Doctors Hospital. Grandparents are Sandra Hicks of Augusta and Mr. and Mrs. Charles E. Coleman of North Augusta.

Brendan Scot Herring

Chloe Regan Williams

Shelby Camille Smith

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Christopher Heath and Casey VanZant-Owen of North Augusta announce the birth of a daughter, Avery Alexandria Owen, Friday, March 7, 2003, at University Hospital. Grandparents are Montez VanZant of North Augusta and the late William Radford VanZant, Mr. and Mrs. Ben Evangelista of Augusta and Jerry Owen of St. Petersburg, Fla.

Cecilia Nakiesha Spruill

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Donald and Susan Skinner of Evans announce the birth of a daughter, Erin Elizabeth Skinner, Thursday, March 6, 2003, at University Hospital. Grandparents are Patricia Glover and Don and Darlene Skinner, all of Augusta.

Ansley Kate Gibbs

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Steffen Williams and Leslie Scott, both of Harlem, announce the birth of a daughter, Chloe Regan Williams, Sunday, March 9, 2003, at Doctors Hospital. Grandparents are Aubrey Scott of Martinez, Laura Robin of Thomson and Linda Parker of Gig Harbor, Wash.

Brianna Madison Bailey

Helvic Carnard Leverett Jr.

Grace Lucille Green

Kalina Marie Weathington

Abigail Grace Bassett

Collin Alexander Ruff

Hunter Regan Coleman

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Robert and Melissa Malone of Augusta announce the birth of a son, Robert Connor Malone, Friday, Feb. 28, 2003, at Doctors Hospital. Grandparents are James and Sherry Goodman of Augusta and Lynn Field of Memphis, Tenn.

Brent Dean Garner

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Dana A. and Ivey Rau of Martinez announce the birth of a son, Jayden Tyler Rau, Thursday, March 13, 2003, at St. Joseph Hospital. Grandparents are Franklin B. Henry of Martinez and the late Paula K. Henry and Alton and Loretta Rau of Augusta.

Christopher David Egan

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The Rev. Michael Bassett and Donna Bassett of Martinez announce the birth of a daughter, Abigail Grace Bassett, Monday, March 10, 2003, at St. Joseph Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. Larry N. Hartis of Indian Trail, N.C., and Carol R. Bassett of Danbury, Conn.

Jayden Tyler Rau

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Dennis Gerald Smith Jr. and Aimee Monk Smith of Grovetown announce the birth of a daughter, Shelby Camille Smith, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2003, at Doctors Hospital. Grandparents are Mark H. and Camille Person of North Augusta, Robert D. Monk of Augusta, Margaret Dodgen Smith of Martinez and Dennis G. Smith Sr. of Appling.

Hailie Alice Cliett

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Charles Wayne Weathington Jr. and Amanda Stephanie Weathington of Augusta announce the birth of a daughter, Kalina Marie Weathington, Monday, March 10, 2003, at University Hospital. Grandparents are Judith Thompson, Joseph Thompson and Ramona Louise Weathington, all of Augusta, and the late Charles Wayne Weathington Sr.

Avery Alexandria Owen

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Robert Lee Cliett Jr. and Shannon Meleah Cliett of Augusta announce the birth of a daughter, Hailie Alice Cliett, Monday, March 10, 2003, at University Hospital. Grandparents are Jimmy Chalker, Lisa Bennett, Robert Cliett and Donna Munn, all of Augusta.

Ashiana Zamaria Jackson

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David Egan and Heidi Florentine, both of Evans, announce the birth of a son, Christopher David Egan, Friday, March 7, 2003, at Doctors Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. Nicholas J. Florentine Jr. of East Palatka, Fla., and Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Egan of Augusta.

Lauren Elizabeth Luke

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Matthew and Terri Gibbs of Martinez announce the birth of a daughter, Ansley Kate Gibbs, Tuesday, March 4, 2003, at St. Joseph Hospital. Grandparents are Melvin and Julie Roberts and Tina Odum, all of Augusta, Teny Gibbs of Evans and the late Charles F. Gibbs.

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James Jackson III and Aiyana Jackson of Augusta announce the birth of a daughter, Ashiana Zamaria Jackson, Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2003, at University Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. Howard Gist Jr. of Hephzibah, Jerry and Gladys Moore of Evans and James Jackson of Thomson.

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Scot A. and Stephanie N. Herring of Martinez announce the birth of a son, Brendan Scot Herring, Monday, March 3, 2003, at St. Joseph Hospital. Grandparents are Garry L. McFarlain of Westlake, La., Margaret Suter of Lake Charles, La., and Nancy L. Hoehn and Edward Giusto, both of Augusta.

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Bill and Jennifer Johnson of Augusta announce the birth of a son, Brennan Gene Johnson, Monday, March 17, 2003, at St. Joseph Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. David Mirich of Merrillville, Ind., and Mr. and Mrs. Billie Ray Johnson of Hephzibah.

James Walker Mackenzie Knox

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Helvic Carnard and Mialashun Leverett of Hephzibah announce the birth of a son, Helvic Carnard Leverett Jr., Monday, March 10, 2003, at St. Joseph Hospital. Grandparents are Charles and Kathryn Holmes and Harold and Alma Leverett, all of Augusta.

William Bryce LaVigne

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Charles Edward and Kimberly Nations Knox of Augusta announce the birth of a son, James Walker Mackenzie Knox, Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2003, at University Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. Michael Thomas Nations of Atlanta and Mr. and Mrs. Boone A. Knox of Thomson.

Erin Elizabeth Skinner

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Donald and Cheryl LaVigne of Martinez announce the birth of a son, William Bryce LaVigne, Friday, March 14, 2003, at University Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. Carlton Lord and William LaVigne, all of Augusta, and Melinda Gagnon of Marietta, Ga.

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William Bailey III and Amie Hale, both of Augusta, announce the birth of a daughter, Brianna Madison Bailey, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2003, at the Medical College of Georgia Hospital. Grandparents are Louis and Rose Hale of Augusta and Roy and Carie Bosdell of Waynesboro, Ga.

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Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Garner of Augusta announce the birth of a son, Brent Dean Garner, Monday, Jan. 20, 2003, at St. Joseph Hospital. Grandparents are Mr. and Mrs. Jim McBrayer of Killeen, Texas, and Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Garner Sr. of Augusta.

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LINCOLN, Neb. -- A Shetland pony with the Shrine Circus took his show on the road.

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SAVANNAH, Ga. -- A DUI coordinator in a Georgia court has resigned after being charged with drunken driving, officials said.

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SAVANNAH, Ga. -- A DUI coordinator in a Georgia court has resigned after being charged with drunken driving, officials said.

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LAKELAND, Fla. - The sympathetic looks and pats on the back Jason Marquis received Tuesday morning were in direct proportion to the number of runs he gave up Monday night.

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KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Mike Hampton has grown weary of talking about his two seasons with the Colorado Rockies, where the two-time All-Star's career was derailed by the thin air of Coors Field.

Pratt's fall gives Bong a chance in bullpen

Marquis' disaster could force him into bullpen

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VERO BEACH, Fla. - The Atlanta Braves' roster is taking shape.

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KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Longtime announcers Skip Caray and Pete Van Wieren won't be part of TBS' coverage of the Atlanta Braves at the start of the season as the cable network tries to lure more viewers.

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KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- The Atlanta Braves released left-handed reliever Mike Venafro on Tuesday.

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KISSIMMEE, Fla. -- Greg Maddux made his final start of spring training in front of about 20 fans, on an auxiliary field of the Atlanta Braves complex, with a high school softball tournament underway next door.

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NEW YORK -- Wall Street fluctuated and closed modestly lower Wednesday as investors reacted to disquieting developments in the war in Iraq. Traders also collected profits from Tuesday's advance and last week's big rally.

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A year ago during Masters Week, Augusta Regional Airport officials enticed Continental Express to offer nonstop flights from Augusta to New York and Houston. This time, the mission is Washington, D.C., and the airline is US Airways.

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If activity along Eighth Street is any indication, commercial interest in downtown has yet to flatten out.

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WASHINGTON -- Orders to U.S. factories for big-ticket goods fell by 1.2 percent in February, the biggest decline in three months, a fresh sign of the struggles facing the nation's battered manufacturing sector.

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American flags and yellow ribbons are selling well in the Augusta area, several stores said Tuesday, as the war in Iraq continues.

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CHICAGO -- Sears, Roebuck and Co. said Wednesday it is considering selling its credit card division, considered one of the top customer databases in the retail industry with about 25 million active accounts.

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Mariachi musician Martin Silva browses through the shelves of a Wal-Mart store in Juarez, Mexico, after performing in the store's opening ceremonies.

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NEW YORK -- Wall Street moved moderately higher Tuesday as President Bush's prediction that U.S.-led forces will prevail in Iraq prompted investors to pick up bargains following Monday's steep decline.

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NEW YORK - Pfizer Inc. said Tuesday it expects to close its $54 billion acquisition of Pharmacia Corp. next month, now that the Federal Trade Commission has approved a compromise plan, allaying antitrust concerns.

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WASHINGTON -- Sales of previously owned homes fell 4.3 percent in February as bad weather kept house hunters indoors. But even with the decline, sales posted their fourth best month on record.

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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - A federal jury acquitted Tyson Foods and three of its managers Wednesday of hiring illegal immigrants from Mexico and Central America as part of a nationwide conspiracy to boost production and profits.

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NEW YORK -- Investors counting on a quick market recovery once a military conflict with Iraq began got a sobering lesson this week: This isn't the 1991 Gulf War.

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NEW YORK -- It's the time of the year when Americans can do well because they do good.

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NEW YORK -- Consumer confidence declined for a fourth consecutive month in March, dragged down by worries about the economy and tensions in Iraq, a private research group said Tuesday.

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STILLWATER, Okla. -- Oklahoma State associate head coach Sean Sutton has interviewed for the vacant head coaching job at Clemson.

Better flag plans

The governor's whiff

Primary winners

The other shoe

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Gov. Sonny Perdue is going to great lengths to conceal his opinion on the Georgia flag - a controversy he helped whip back up last year with his promise of a referendum on the issue.

Unpatriotic protests

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Aiken Department of Public Safety Lt. Mike Hunt's win over interim county Sheriff Jody Rowland in the GOP primary for sheriff Tuesday wasn't that much of a surprise, but the magnitude of the victory certainly was - a 59 to 41 percent thrashing.

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The sight of a newly liberated Iraqi pounding an oversized poster of Saddam Hussein with his shoe was priceless.

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You've heard it before and you'll hear it again. Peacenik protesters, leftist celebrities and various other war foes - including 11 members of the U.S. House - who say they "support the troops but not the president or his policy."

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Wouldn't it be marvelous if Georgia could avoid another long, rancorous debate over the state flag, to be followed by a bitterly divisive referendum on the issue?

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LOS ANGELES -- Don't expect to see Roger Rabbit in a sequel - getting co-stars Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse, Betty Boop and Porky Pig together again would be too difficult for producers.

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ATHENS, Greece -- Greek filmmakers, including award-winning director Theo Angelopoulos, are calling for a boycott of American movies to protest the war in Iraq.

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NEW YORK -- It's the time of the year when Americans can do well because they do good.

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WASHINGTON -- More than 2 million people have used free tax preparation services offered through the Internal Revenue Service this tax season, surpassing the agency's goal for the program's first year.

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The recipe for this refreshingly piquant fresh fruit salsa can deliver a variety of flavor combinations depending on the fruit used - you can adjust the ingredients to your taste, or to what fruit is available.

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ATLANTA -- Dustin Phillips' two-run homer capped a ninth inning rally that gave Georgia State a 7-5 victory over Georgia Southern on Tuesday.

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LUBBOCK, Texas - Andre Emmett scored 29 points to lead Texas Tech past Georgia Tech 80-72 in an NIT quarterfinal game Wednesday night, sending Bob Knight to the tournament's semifinals for the sixth time in his 37 years as a head coach.

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IOWA CITY, Iowa - There's not much time for Georgia Tech to savor its most dramatic victory of the season.

Jackets hit road quickly

Every home improvement show has a gimmick

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- The Players Championship has all the trappings of a major. The trick is getting everyone to consider it one.

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- Tiger Woods was on the first tee before sunrise Wednesday, a 6:20 start to his final practice round for The Players Championship without knowing how long it would last.

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Augusta's John Engler survived a horrific automobile accident Sunday afternoon that killed two people and left him hospitalized.

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- Ernie Els withdrew from The Players Championship on Tuesday after injuring his right wrist two weeks ago while working out with a punching bag at his home in London.

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NEW YORK -- Martha Burk believes it is "appalling" that women who fight for the United States in Iraq face discrimination at home at private golf clubs like Augusta National.

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- Tiger Woods reached the century mark at the Bay Hill Invitational by making the cut for the 100th consecutive time on the PGA Tour.

Sorenstam may miss Asahi Ryokuken

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- Bruce Edwards usually caddies for John Cook at The Players Championship whenever his regular boss - Tom Watson - isn't playing. He's back at Sawgrass this year, and emotions were running high Wednesday.

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Annika Sorenstam, the top female golfer in the world, will prepare for her PGA Tour debut at the Colonial by playing in Japan.

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NEW YORK -- Martha Burk plans to expand her campaign against Augusta National and CBS by contending that televising the event from an all-male golf club "is an insult to the nearly quarter million women in the U.S. armed forces."

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WASHINGTON -- U.S. aircraft have dropped more than 2,000 precision-guided bombs on Iraq since the war's start, a feat possible in part because the "smart" bombs now are produced for a relatively cheap $20,000 each.

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NEW ORLEANS -- An Army sergeant suspected of a deadly grenade attack in Kuwait gave no hint of any problem with the military, though he once complained about difficulties blacks had in attaining rank, family members said.

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BOSTON -- The manufacturer of the Tomahawk cruise missiles that have pounded Iraq for a week plans to replenish the U.S. Navy's arsenal with upgraded versions of the low-flying, laser-guided rockets.

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LONDON -- Prime Minister Tony Blair, before leaving Wednesday for a Washington meeting with President Bush, said the United States and its allies must broaden their agenda beyond Iraq and help build peace in the Middle East and across the globe.

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MacDILL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- President Bush said Wednesday the war in Iraq is far from over and warned that coalition forces will face "the most desperate elements of a doomed regime" as they close in on Baghdad.

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CAMP AS SALIYAH, Qatar -- You've heard of bomb-sniffing dogs, but mine-sniffing dolphins?

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UNITED NATIONS -- Secretary-General Kofi Annan expressed growing concern Wednesday about the "humanitarian casualties" of the war against Iraq and reiterated that the United States is responsible for the welfare of the civilian population.

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RIYADH, Saudi Arabia -- Saudi Arabia has contacted the United States and Iraq with a peace proposal, the kingdom's foreign minister told reporters Tuesday. He said he was still awaiting a response.

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UMM QASR, Iraq -- The first sizable relief convoy rolled into Iraq in a sandstorm Wednesday as allied forces struggled to clear the way for more aid shipments, using dolphins to remove mines from waterways and trying to subdue Iraqi fighters in the city of Basra.

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BAGHDAD, Iraq -- Baghdad was digging in deeper Tuesday - literally.

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WASHINGTON -- Surprised by the power of Iraq's paramilitaries, the Pentagon is adjusting its tactics in the push to Baghdad, defense officials said Wednesday.

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British troops battled die-hard Iraqi defenders of Basra on Tuesday as warnings mounted of a humanitarian crisis for the city's 1.3 million residents. Blinding sandstorms plagued the American-led advance on Baghdad.

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IN SOUTH-CENTRAL IRAQ -- For the Marines pushing toward Baghdad, it's now less about getting there quickly than leaving a safe road behind.

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CAMP AS SAYLIYAH, Qatar -- In a friendly fire incident, an American F-16 fired on a U.S. Patriot missile battery in Iraq after the battery's radar locked on the jet, the U.S. Central Command said Tuesday. No U.S. casualties were reported.

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RIYADH, Saudi Arabia -- Saudi Arabia on Wednesday backed away from an announcement that it had made a peace proposal to the United States and Iraq, saying only that it had "general ideas" about ending the war.

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NEAR BASRA, Iraq -- British forces battled more than 1,000 die-hard Iraqi loyalists for control of Basra on Wednesday, coming to the defense of inhabitants who rose up against Saddam Hussein in the streets of the country's second-largest city.

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CAMP AS SAYLIYAH, Qatar -- In an about-face, British forces said Tuesday they had decided to move against militia fighters who blocked them from securing the southern Iraqi city of Basra - even as Iraqi forces in the area allegedly began using civilians as human shields.

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Playing host to out-of-town Masters guests or just looking for an easy, elegant entree? How about serving delicious roasted pork tenderloin with a peachy glaze?

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A longtime Augusta banker was named Tuesday to head community efforts to protect Fort Gordon from closure in 2005.

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Regarding the Augusta Human Relations Commission: I oppose allotting this committee any further authority in investigating the sheriff's department of Richmond County. Charlie Hannah, Augusta

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What is going on in the hearts and minds of the American people? As I watch the news and reports coming out of Iraq, it saddens me to see the plight of the Iraqi people. We see Iraqi soldiers (although this is just a pretense, because they are just ordinary Iraqi citizens) who are ill-equipped in both weapons and military skills, being forced to defend a regime that has ruled with tyranny and oppression for 25 years. Carol Null, Evans, Ga.

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So now the legislators in Atlanta want to change the name of yet another of our Augusta roadways, River Watch Parkway, to honor one of their fellow politicians. Mike Padgett Highway and Doug Barnard Parkway were crammed down our throats in total disregard of the protests of us - the people who actually live in the area. Enough!

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There are some days that we need to count our blessings. We in Augusta have District Attorney Danny Craig. He is as good a district attorney as there is in the state of Georgia. The staff that he has assembled, leads and inspires is a group of dedicated, bright energetic prosecutors who collectively handle thousands of cases each year. Our community is a safer place because of their dedicated service. John C. Bell Jr., Augusta

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It is very important at this time for me to reiterate what several well-informed individuals have recently stated in reference to their direct knowledge of state Sen. Don Cheeks, R-Augusta.

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In the March 15 Chronicle, there was an article ("Canal boat takes shape," Metro) regarding the building of two canal boats to be used in the Augusta Canal. These are replicas of old boats once used on the canal, which will offer rides beginning this year.

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Historically, Americans are very proud of their individual freedom and the First Amendment guarantee of free speech. Tolerance and inclusion of all races, nationalities, religions, political affiliations and philosophies are what makes this country great. So what has happened during the last few weeks?

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It is amazing to me that there is no other matter that merits the attention of Martha Burk and the National Council of Women's Organizations except the allowance of women as members of the Augusta National Golf Club. This matter is above equal treatment of women in the work place, educational opportunities, pro-life or anything else regarding the equality of women. The Rev. Jesse Jackson I suppose can find no other worthwhile cause to lend him stature. I guess any exposure to the media is better than no exposure. James Sherrill, Evans, Ga.

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Shame on Martha Burk. Women everywhere should be incensed and offended.

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I would like to congratulate Mike Hunt. He will make the people of Aiken County a good sheriff. George Williams, Langley, S.C.

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NEW YORK -- Despite the least-watched Academy Awards since at least 1974, ABC earned a rare prime-time ratings victory last week. Billy Cooper, North Augusta, S.C.

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As a Georgia taxpayer I resent Gov. Sonny Perdue's plan to balance the state budget on the people who can least afford it - the poor. As the majority of smokers are in the middle- and lower-income brackets, this tax plan will be paid for by them.

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If those who continue to criticize Sen. Don Cheeks, R-Augusta, had the courage to visit his office and talk with him, they would soon know what a sincere and honest gentleman he is. I am fortunate to have him as a neighbor. If he sees a need, he does not wait to be asked; as I know from experience, he graciously provides. Ann Hendrick, Augusta

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Upon hearing of the death of Fred Rogers (host of Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood), my thoughts turned to someone closer to our area who recently passed away and shared many of the wonderful characteristics as those of Mr. Rogers.

AugustaChronicle.com
Bravo for your March 10 editorial on the library, "We deserve better."

In the know

Small protions

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The nose begins with pear and spice aromas that lead into peach and oakey notes with a touch of vanilla. The finish is short but crisp.

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The health and fitness calendar is a listing of support groups, fitness and health activities and lectures. Send information to Health Calendar, The Augusta Chronicle Newsroom, P.O. Box 1928, Augusta, GA 30903-1928. Send information by fax to 722-7403 and send e-mail to feature@augustachronicle.com. Please include a contact name and phone number.

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NEW YORK -- The U.S. publisher of the "Harry Potter" series has revised a controversial program that sells books directly to students. Retailers had complained they were losing business.

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Working moms and dads who struggle to put a hot meal on the table each night can find new help in their grocery meat case - Kraft's Fresh Prep dinner kits.

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Three hundred and ten episodes, 33 years, eight series and one Great Dane.

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NEW YORK - Her bullet-deflecting bracelets are gone, her golden tiara has disappeared and her long, flowing locks have been shorn.

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Spring break is a time of revelry, but students need to remember to play it safe.

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For five seasons, the Pee Dee Pride have had their number.

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Luke Murphy has been in this situation before.

Team gets new five-year deal

Roy may return if team wins in playoffs

Center makes way back to Augusta via Macon

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Augusta Lynx defenseman Phil Roy said last week's knee surgery was a success and vows to return to the lineup if the Lynx make the playoffs and advance to the second round.

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The Augusta-Richmond County Coliseum Authority voted Tuesday to renew a five-year contract with the Augusta Lynx.

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Augusta Lynx defenseman Chris Gustafson answers questions for Chronicle staff writer Rob Mueller.

Pressure builds as Lynx lose

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ATLANTA -- Lawmakers plan to invite former President Jimmy Carter to address a joint session of the Legislature to honor him for his Nobel Peace Prize.

Corrections

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Written comments on the environmental impact of the construction and operation of the MOX plant will be taken through May 14. Call the Nuclear Regulator Commission at (301) 415-6613 to learn how to submit comments.

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At Robert C. Daniel Parkway, Walton Way near Monte Sano Avenue, and Washington Road at Baston Road, traffic officials are examining a danger that for motorists is only one turn away.

Across the area

Banker chosen to protect post

Speaker details plant's security

Coliseum panel hires manager for civic center

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AIKEN - Riding an apparent wave of voter discontent with the status quo, Aiken Department of Public Safety Lt. Mike Hunt delivered a crushing defeat to interim Aiken County Sheriff Jody Rowland on Tuesday night in the hotly contested special Republican primary for the county's top law enforcement post.

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North Augusta officials are close to ironing out the final details of an agreement with the city's riverfront developer, who said Wednesday that residential lots along the Savannah River will go up for sale this summer.

HIV-assault bill stirs controversy

Across the area

DUI arrest leads official to resign

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With a little more than a year of space left in their Baker Place Road landfill, Columbia County officials are wondering what to do next with trash.

Arrested educator loses post

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SAVANNAH, Ga. - The DUI coordinator at Chatham County State Court resigned this week after being arrested and charged with drunken driving in Athens, court officials said.

State auditors condemn health center contracts

House stops tobacco plan

AugustaChronicle.com
Luke Murphy has been in this situation before.

Rants and Raves
THIS IS A RAVE for Johnny Edwards, a staff writer from The Augusta Chronicle. I am enjoying his articles every day and look forward to them. Thank you so much.

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AIKEN - A body was found Tuesday afternoon in the Savannah River within the boundaries of Savannah River Site in Barnwell County.

Employee is arrested in attack on his boss

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AIKEN - The Energy Department has plucked the word "acting" from Jeffrey Allison's title.

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Officials at the Augusta-Richmond County Fire Prevention Bureau will check 16 area nightclubs Friday for corrections to fire code violations found last weekend.

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Richmond County sheriff's Investigator Jeff Johnson knew something looked out of place - and it wasn't just the driver's youthful face.

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ATLANTA -Jamil Al-Amin attempted to escape from the Fulton County jail last week, according to authorities who said Wednesday they want the convicted murderer transferred back to prison.

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An article in Saturday's editions of The Augusta Chronicleabout the membership controversy at the Augusta National Golf Club should have reported that the Georgia Chamber of Commerce pays for 80 admission badges it uses to take industrial prospects to the Masters Tournament.

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COLUMBIA, S.C. -- As South Carolina's budget crisis continues, the State Law Enforcement Division is relying more heavily on federal money for its mission to protect the state against terrorism.

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CAMP VIPER, Iraq - The sandstorm started at about 9 a.m. Tuesday and refused to let up.

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Some students at A.R. Johnson Health, Science and Engineering High School say they plan to protest the proposed transfer of several of the schools' teachers.

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MARCH 27, 1953 President Eisenhower has stunned the Washington baseball colony by showing only mild interest in the invitation to throw out the first ball of the season at Griffith Stadium next month.

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JACKSON, Ga. -- Larry Eugene Moon was executed Tuesday for the 1984 murder and robbery of a man who was buying aspirin for his wife at a convenience store.

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University of South Carolina Aiken nursing student Lauren Kirkland massages Lynn Way's back during Health and Fitness Fair 2003 at the university.

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THIS IS A rant for all you smokers: If you all would stay home, we wouldn't have to ban the smokers from smoking in restaurants.

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March 26, 1943 A lone bandit armed with a "shiny" revolver staged a daylight robbery at the Bell Finance Co. office, second floor of the Lamar Building, shortly before 6 o'clock yesterday and walked out with about $488, police say.

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Today's subscriber of the day is Billy Williams of Martinez.

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COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The U.S. Department of Defense is facing a new threat: drowning in donations.

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ATLANTA -- An emotional debate over mandatory waiting periods for abortions hit the Georgia House on Tuesday, but the pleas did not sway a top Democrat blocking the bill.

Riverfront lots will go on sale

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ATLANTA -- Gov. Sonny Perdue called reporters into his office Tuesday to argue again for a tobacco tax increase to balance the budget, making the same arguments he's repeated since he took office - it's the only way to overcome a revenue shortfall, and it will deter smoking to boot.

Across Georgia and South Carolina

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ATLANTA -- Think it's settled that Georgia will have a statewide vote on its flag? Not if some lawmakers get their way.

Center makes way back to Augusta via Macon

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ATLANTA -- Some military reservists and National Guard members would get a tax break on military income under a bill passed by the Georgia House Tuesday.

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ATLANTA - The state Senate overwhelmingly passed the final two pieces of Gov. Sonny Perdue's ethics reform package Wednesday.

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ATLANTA -- In a move to bypass opposition from House Democrats, the Senate Education Committee unanimously voted in favor of Gov. Sonny Perdue's education package Tuesday, which gives local school systems more control over funding, curriculum and class size.

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For Olivia Mickalonis, the operations manager of Augusta Trees and Landscaping, preparations for the Masters Tournament coincide with another springtime routine - preparing for pollen.

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ATLANTA -- Lawyers for the city of Winder argued Tuesday that the Georgia Supreme Court would hurt police if it does not reject a lawsuit filed by the family of a 14-year-old girl who was killed while fleeing officers.

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Officials at an Augusta mental health center gave sweetheart deals to companies with close ties to administrators or their friends, awarding them contracts that paid big bonuses even the companies could not explain, a state audit shows.

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An Atlanta consultant released its controversial choice Tuesday night for a connector route between Whiskey and Silver Bluff roads, an issue that attracted dozens of people even though the road's construction is years off.

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ATLANTA -- Spc. Jamaal R. Addison was his family's computer guru, according to a relative.

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PUBLIC FORUM

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ATLANTA -- The Republican-controlled state Senate passed the last of Gov. Sonny Perdue's ethics bills Wednesday, but Democrats in the House say they plan to support their own version of reform.

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A divided Augusta-Richmond County Coliseum Authority voted Tuesday to hire a management company to run the civic center complex.

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COLUMBIA, S.C. -- South Carolina first lady Jenny Sanford may not be home every night to help her boys with homework or tuck them into bed, but she's doing her best to juggle parenthood with ceremonial duties while Gov. Mark Sanford spends two weeks at Air Force Reserve officer training.

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A troubled Augusta mental health center could lose $2 million by the end of June, but it is expected to be able to serve its clients, officials said Tuesday night.

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CLEMSON, S.C. -- A watchdog group for women and minorities at Clemson University wants administrators to establish a rape hot line and a policy that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation.

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An employee of Fazoli's Italian Restaurant was arrested Tuesday, accused of attacking a manager at the business on Washington Road.

SRS security finds body in river

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A longtime Augusta banker was named Tuesday to head community efforts to protect Fort Gordon from closure in 2005.

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NORFOLK, Va. -- Police put out a national alert Wednesday for a Georgia man accused of fatally shooting his father and then killing and mutilating one of the two nuns he abducted to make his escape.

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When a soldier leaves for war, family members aren't the only ones left behind. So are the soldier's co-workers.

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Today's subscriber of the day is Pam Booker of Martinez.

Rants and Raves
THIS IS A rant for all you smokers: If you all would stay home, we wouldn't have to ban the smokers from smoking in restaurants.

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THIS IS A RAVE for Johnny Edwards, a staff writer from The Augusta Chronicle. I am enjoying his articles every day and look forward to them. Thank you so much.

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The Columbia County kindergarten teacher arrested in January on drug charges will not return to the classroom.

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AIKEN - Now that the dust has settled from Tuesday's decisive primary battle for Aiken County sheriff, the hot air of campaign rhetoric will start getting chilled by this cold fact:

Leaders talk of possible deficit

Teacher transfers protested

Connector plan draws big crowd

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Henry Frischknecht points to three black, golf ball-size circles on Augusta State University's Arsenal Oak.

State sets watering rules

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ATLANTA -Lawyers for the city of Winder argued Tuesday that the Georgia Supreme Court would hurt police if it does not reject a lawsuit filed by the family of a 14-year-old girl who was killed while fleeing officers.

Safety of clubs studied

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An Augusta woman was charged Wednesday with stabbing her live-in boyfriend in the face after an argument over money, authorities said.

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ATLANTA - Just two months after lifting statewide outdoor watering restrictions, Georgia environmental regulators are moving to make odd-even restrictions on lawn sprinkling permanent.

News you can use

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ATLANTA - Kendal Richardson doesn't plan to spit at a Georgia police officer anytime soon. However, the HIV-positive Atlanta-area resident says he is worried that a bill pending before the state Legislature could send him to jail for clearing his throat in front of a cop.

Police find 12-year-old driving stolen car

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ATLANTA - Dealing first-year Gov. Sonny Perdue a major blow, the House on Wednesday soundly rejected a proposal to make up some of Georgia's growing budget shortfall by increasing tobacco taxes.

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A Salley woman and her live-in boyfriend pleaded guilty Tuesday to felony animal cruelty charges and were given prison sentences by Circuit Judge James C. Williams.

Senate passes Perdue reforms

Across Georgia and South Carolina

Hunt, Butler will meet at polls

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CAMP VIPER, Iraq - The majority of the 319th Transportation Company's truck drivers have been on the road for more than 60 hours straight, delivering much-needed fuel to Marines advancing toward Baghdad.

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. - Greg Norman was resigned to an April without Augusta.

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. - The countdown to Masters-selection Monday is four days. To say the bubble boys are treading on pins and needles is more than cliche - it's all too literal.

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Turn on the television and you'll find that shows about homes and gardening have become very popular.

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LOS ANGELES -- Steve Martin and Queen Latifah are turning into squatters at the top of the box office.

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LOS ANGELES -- Roman Polanski's surprise Oscar win for directing "The Pianist" has returned Hollywood's attention to a filmmaking career that includes at least two films considered cinematic classics, "Rosemary's Baby" and "Chinatown."

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LOS ANGELES - Now that Chicago has been crowned with the best-picture Oscar and continues to draw droves to theaters, Hollywood stars and producers say they're eager to revive the long-dormant musical.

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Here are facts about this weekend's Samsung/RadioShack 500 race.

Q&A with Greg Biffle

Racing Facts - Samsung/RadioShack 500

NASCAR founder dies at 83

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FORT WORTH, Texas - Kurt Busch wrecked a lot of cars, threw a lot of tantrums and said a lot of shocking things before he learned the biggest difference between winning and losing is the guy behind the steering wheel.

Road to success

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FORT WORTH, Texas - Sammy Packard watched the Daytona 500 from his home less than two miles from the Daytona International Speedway two months ago.

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Greg Biffle, last year's NASCAR Busch Series champion and a current rookie of the year candidate in Winston Cup, failed to qualify for the race at Las Vegas earlier this month. Since then, he's shown a steady improvement with three consecutive top-13 finishes, including a fifth last week at Bristol, Tenn. Despite having one fewer start, he's ranked ahead of 16 other drivers who have appeared in all six events. Looking back, Biffle said missing the race at Las Vegas was the best thing that's happened to his race team. Biffle talked of his recent progress as he prepared for Sunday's Samsung/RadioShack 500 at the Texas Motor Speedway.

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CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- NASCAR suspended Trucks Series crew chief John Monsam for two months and fined him $1,500 Tuesday for using an illegal spring at Mesa Marin Raceway.

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AUBURN, Ala. -- Two weeks ago, the Auburn Tigers didn't know whether they would be invited to the NCAA tournament, let alone headed to the Sweet 16.

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LAWRENCE, Kan. -- A handful of teams recruited Keith Langford out of high school in Fort Worth, Texas.

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MILWAUKEE -- Every time Travis Diener sinks a 3-pointer or slings an assist, his thoughts are half a world away.

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Minnesota coach Pam Borton had a tough time believing it. In fact, she needed to see the result staring her in the face.

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The second round of the NCAA women's basketball tournament brought a number of upsets and another game-winning shot by Amber Jacobs.

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NORMAN, Okla. -- One year after helping lead Oklahoma to the Final Four, Ebi Ere is just happy to help the Sooners when he can.

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AUSTIN, Texas -- Rick Barnes will be the only coach at the Alamodome this weekend who hasn't won a national championship.

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MINNEAPOLIS -- No need for the Wisconsin Badgers to board a plane. They just jumped on the bus for a four-hour trip to the Metrodome, a cramped but relaxing ride featuring non-stop chatter.

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COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Assessing the value of Steve Blake to Maryland's basketball team, coach Gary Williams chooses to look past all the points, assists and steals the point guard has amassed as a four-year starter.

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Kittie Taylor described her mother as well read and educated and said that a love of reading led her to become a teacher at a time when most women didn't work outside the home.

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Mrs. Willie Turner (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Betty Poston (AIKEN, S.C.)

Mrs. Mary Dowell (MIDVILLE, Ga.)

Mrs. Geraldine Loar (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mr. Willie Dallas (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Jessie Morris (EVANS, Ga.)

Mr. Arthur Houston Jr. (PHILADELPHIA, Pa.)

Mrs. Lilly Wiley (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Annie Beard (SYLVANIA, Ga.)

Ms. Greta Washington (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Mary Cobb (NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C.)

Featured obituary: Mrs. Kittie Taylor

Mrs. Christine Murphy (GROVETOWN, Ga.)

Mr. Lester Leopard (BATH, S.C.)

Deacon Grady Lovett (STATESBORO, Ga.)

Mrs. Betty Poston (AIKEN, S.C.)

Mrs. Evelyn Etheridge (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Frances Milton (KEYSVILLE, Ga.)

Mrs. Carrie Nabritt-Williams (BROOKLYN, N.Y.)

Mrs. Maryanne Larkin (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Geraldine Loar (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mr. James Williams (TEANECK, N.J.)

Mrs. Mary Cobb (NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C.)

Mr. Dionicio Renteria (FORT WAYNE, Ind.)

Mr. Blueford Bailey (LINCOLNTON, Ga.)

Mrs. Simone Kortick (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Maggie Garrett (SWAINSBORO, Ga.)

Mrs. Elsie DeWeese (TOPTON, N.C.)

Mrs. Mable Harris (NORTH AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Louise Williams (WILLISTON, S.C.)

Mr. Frederick Vance (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Catherine Heggs (WADLEY, Ga.)

Mr. Jethro Brown (WAYNESBORO, Ga.)

Mrs. Lillie Wiley (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Maryanne Larkin (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Lenore Crowley (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Judy George (MILLEN, Ga.)

Mr. Homer Deer Jr. (ULMER, S.C.)

Mrs. Carrie Nabritt-Williams (BROOKLYN, N.Y.)

Mr. Robert Cuyler Sr. (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Agnes Edney (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Col. Wilfred Gladue (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Mary Tanner (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Mary Tanner (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Fannye Wikander (NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C.)

Sgt. Arthur Becton Sr. (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Jessie Morris (EVANS, Ga.)

Col. Wilfred Gladue (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mrs. Mary Graham (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

Mr. Lance Lanier (AUGUSTA, Ga.)

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GEORGIA'S PEDIATRICIANS have followed carefully the debate in the General Assembly over Gov. Sonny Perdue's proposed excise-tax increase on tobacco products. Our 1,500 statewide members - comprised of general pediatricians as well as pediatric specialists, including pediatric allergists, pulmonologists and neonatologists, are deeply concerned about the quality of healthcare and the health environment for Georgia's children. The powerful tobacco lobby and other legislators who are opposed to any tax increase, even one on tobacco, have proved formidable at the state Capitol. But when considered as a public health measure, the answer is clear: A substantial tax increase on tobacco products is the single greatest public health measure the General Assembly could enact in many years.

For children's health, it's time to increase tobacco taxes
GEORGIA'S PEDIATRICIANS have followed carefully the debate in the General Assembly over Gov. Sonny Perdue's proposed excise-tax increase on tobacco products. Our 1,500 statewide members - comprised of general pediatricians as well as pediatric specialists, including pediatric allergists, pulmonologists and neonatologists, are deeply concerned about the quality of healthcare and the health environment for Georgia's children. The powerful tobacco lobby and other legislators who are opposed to any tax increase, even one on tobacco, have proved formidable at the state Capitol. But when considered as a public health measure, the answer is clear: A substantial tax increase on tobacco products is the single greatest public health measure the General Assembly could enact in many years.

Overtime

Team's mettle to get tough test

Overtime

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WASHINGTON -- Michelle Kwan could have done this in her sleep.

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PARIS -- The Tour de France is considering tighter security for this summer's race after Lance Armstrong expressed concerns about his team's safety because of the U.S.-led war with Iraq.

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Richmond Academy coach Scott Guinn is pleased with his team's performance so far.

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Individual game tickets to the Augusta GreenJackets for the 2003 season go on sale at 9 a.m. today at the team's business office at 78 Milledge Road.

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KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. -- At Jennifer Capriati's request, the 1999 Outkast song "Bombs Over Baghdad" was played on the stadium public-address system before her most recent match at the Nasdaq-100 Open.

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The infant son of Tampa Bay receiver Joe Jurevicius has died nearly 10 weeks after being born prematurely during the Buccaneers' run to the Super Bowl.

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CLEVELAND -- LeBron James continues to surpass expectations.

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DALLAS -- Earl Carson wanted his high school basketball team to play better defense, and he had an idea: Every time a player drew a charge he would pay him a dollar.

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CLEVELAND -- Close friends and future Purdue teammates, Katie Gearlds and Erin Lawless led the charge as the West beat the East 92-72 Wednesday at the McDonald's All-American High School girls basketball game.

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PHOENIX -- NFL owners changed nothing.

There's hope for Norman yet

Life on the Masters' bubble can be taxing

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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- Teams searching for debris from the space shuttle Columbia have only a few more weeks before spring growth of brush and trees makes it difficult to find more pieces, NASA officials said Wednesday.

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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- The way metal melted in debris from the space shuttle Columbia indicates the leading edge of the shuttle's left wing experienced the hottest temperatures, perhaps offering clues as to where fiery gases penetrated the spacecraft, experts said Wednesday.

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WASHINGTON -- NASA should re-examine the way it certifies space shuttles as safe to launch because of increasing problems discovered last year that can be blamed on the shuttle fleet's age, the agency's safety panel said Tuesday.

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ATLANTA -- U.S. and international health officials now believe a flu-like illness from Asia that has sickened hundreds of people may actually be a new, virulent version of an old enemy: the common cold virus.

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PASADENA, Calif. -- A new space telescope to be launched in mid-April should open another window on the universe, pulling into focus objects too cold, distant or clouded by dust for other observatories to see, NASA said Tuesday.

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I recently returned from the 2003 Photo Marketing Association International convention in Las Vegas. This, the largest photo show in North America, is a showcase for new photographic hardware and software.

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NEW YORK -- Despite the least-watched Academy Awards since at least 1974, ABC earned a rare prime-time ratings victory last week.

As war plays out on television, viewers weigh how much to watch

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Dramatic images of the war in Iraq have left people across the country struggling to decide when to watch TV and when to turn it off.

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ALBANY, Ga. -- Georgia basketball recruit and former Dougherty High School star Alexander Johnson said he took the SAT test in December and knows nothing about an allegation that someone else was asked to take the test for him.

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COLUMBIA, S.C. -- University of South Carolina head football coach Lou Holtz has helped fulfill one wish for a McEntire Air National Guardsman stationed in the Middle East.

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STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- Kelly Mazzante scored 27 points to lead fourth-seeded Penn State to a 77-67 victory over fifth-seeded South Carolina in the Mideast Regional on Tuesday.

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ORLANDO, Fla. - How's this for an odd couple for the ages:

Mystery illness appears to be caused by common cold virus