The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, April 11, 1995, Image 1

Below is the OCR text representation for this newspapers page. It is also available as plain text as well as XML.

Trev Alberts returns to
Lincoln, page 7
Arts & Entertainment
Cable show stops in Lincoln
for breakfast, page 9
VOL. 94 NO. 138
April 11, 1995
Welfare reform dominates Legislature’s day
jy j. unristopner Main ana
Matthew Waite
Senior Reporters
The Nebraska Legislature took all
)f Monday to debate the Welfare
Reform bill, but made only slight
)rogress toward a first round vote.
The committee amendments, the
>ne part of LB455 passed by law
nakers, survived the day with sena
ors adding only three amendments,
[he entire floor needed to approve
he amendments that the Health and
iuman Services committee for
Amendments from Sen. Tim Hall
ot Umaha, trom ben. Lnris Beutier ot
Lincoln, and from Sen. Jerome
Warner of Waverly and Curt Bromm
of Wahoo were the only three to
survive debate.
The welfare bill, introduced by
Sen. Ardyce Bohlke of Hastings at
the request of the governor, provides
aid to parents for day care and health
care in exchange for a two-year cap
on benefits.
Beutler’s amendment allowed a
welfare recipient to be considered
under extreme hardship if he or she
could not provide clothing. The com
mittee amendments originally in
cluded only shelter and food.
nail s amendment, nowever, nad
a much larger scope and sparked
sharper debate.
TTte amendment, called “the poly
graph amendment” by Sen. Ernie
Chambers of Omaha, said that if
welfare recipients were declared in
eligible by the state, the county could
not give them assistance.
Hall said he proposed his amend
ment to show that the intent of wel
fare reform was not to shift the re
sponsibility of the program to the
Sen. Don Wesely of Lincoln said
the county welfare office was the last
line of help for those in need. He
quoted Nebraska law that said the
counties were responsible for caring
for the poor.
The Hall amendment represented
a fundamental change in the way the
welfare system was run, said Wesely,
who opposed the amendment. He said
county assistance was short-term help
that would leave with the amend
Chambers, who sarcastically sup
ported the amendment, said the
amendment sent a message.
“The idea is to say shape up or ship
out,” he said.
Chambers said real welfare re
form was not meant to have the
recipient make a short walk to the
county welfare office after the state
cuts off aid.
With no county or state assistance,
Chambers said, elderly people and
children who are welfare “sponges”
would die off.
“Let them die,” he said with sar
casm. “And if they die, we cut the
excess population.”
Chambers voted in favor of the
amendment, only to change his vote
to oppose the amendment. It passed
State senators began the day of
Jam min’
Travis Heying/DN
«r*gLouR of ®,e|Tlentary students cheer the introduction of Nebraska Quarterback Tommie Frazier Monday at the
School is Cool Jam” Monday at the Bob Devany Sports Center. More than 10,000 elementary and middle school
students from around the state gathered to hear UNL sports celebrities.
Rally tells students secret: School is cool
By nauia Lavigne
Senior Reporter
Standing only 3 feet tall, 6-year-old
Michael Norris tugged on his mother’s
“That’s him!” he said, timidly pointing
to former Nebraska football player Trev
Alberts, who towered over the boy.
“Well, ask him for his autograph,” she
The boy summoned up his nerve and
tapped on Alberts’ sleeve. He got his auto
His mother proudly displayed a notepad
with another scribbled name.
“We’ve got Tommie Frazier’s, too,” she
said, smiling.
Alberts and other Nebraska role models
awed the almost 12,000 elementary school
children who filled the Bob Devaney Sports
Center Monday for the 1995 “School is
Cool” Jam.
The motivational pep rally was designed
to encourage students to discover their tal
ents, make good decisions and realize the
benefits of education while having fun..
Members of the UNL marching band,
yell squad and the mascot Lil* Red were no
match for the screaming children.
Sherri Svoboda, a fifth-grade teacher
from Pershing Elementary School in Lin
coln, was surrounded by a group of students
shouting, “Tommie! Tommie! Tommie!”
“This is a great way to get kids to like
school and stay in school,” Svoboda said.
“Just listen to the kids; they’re so psyched
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Chan
cellor Graham Spanier, University of Ne
braska President Dennis Smith, Gov. Ben
Nelson and other community leaders intro
duced the almost 130 schools from more
than 80 communities.
“School is a lot like athletics,” Smith
said. “The more you use your mind, the
stronger it gets.”
The students also watched athletic dem
onstrations by NU gymnasts and volleyball
players and watched members of the NU
basketball team in a slam-dunk contest.
But no celebration in Nebraska — espe
cially a motivational celebration — would
be complete without a tribute to the na
tional-champion Nebraska football team.
Jodi Bursovsky and Katherine Mezger
came from Table Rock Elementary School
to see their favorite Nebraska role model.
“We’re waiting for Todd Osborne,”
Mezger said.
Bursovsky corrected her.
“It’s Tom Osborne.”
“Oh, whatever his name is,” Mezger
said, as she turned her attention to figuring
out how Lil’ Red could see out of his
Sixth-graders Andrew Tomes and Mike
See SCHOOL on 6
by vagrants
up in union
By Chad Lorenz
Staff Reporter
An increase in objectionable behavior from
vagrants in the City Union has caused union
officials and campus police to explore options
for banning repeat offenders.
Daryl Swanson, director of Nebraska unions,
said he was working with campus police to
prosecute vagrants for panhandling, consum
ing alcohol on campus and public disturbances.
UNL Police Sgt. Bill Manning said officers
received three to four calls a day for vagrant
disturbances. Recently, calls about panhan
dling have become serious, he said, with some
comparable to strong-arm robbery.
“If it’s intimidation that makes people give
up their money, we have a problem,” Manning
Last Tuesday, a student reported he was
threatened with a knife by one of the union’s
inhabitants, Manning said.
Swanson said he noticed vagrants visited
the union more often and stayed longer. Some
are becoming bolder with their behavior, he
State to pay
legal costs
for Williams
From Staff Reports
The state will pay for death-row inmate
Robert Williams’ legal counsel, a judge ruled
Lancaster County District Court Judge Paul
Merritt ordered that Williams’ legal fees be
taxed to the state. On Friday, Merritt appointed
lawyers John Vanderslice and Paula Hutchinson
to represent Williams.
Williams, convicted of the 1977 murders of
two Lincoln women, came within three hours
of execution on March 22. A question of
possible juror misconduct prompted the State
Supreme Court to issue a stay and send the case
back to district court. Williams remains on
death row.
Hutchinson was involved with the case
leading up to March 22 after receiving a fed
eral appointment. When the case was sent
back, however, Hutchinson withdrew, stating
that she no longer believed her appointment
was valid.
No court date has been set for an evidentiary
hearing regarding the possibility of juror mis
conduct. Officials in Lancaster County Attor
ney Gary Lacey’s office said Lacey had yet to
ask for the hearing.