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FEDERAL GROWTH GUIDE CRITICIZED AS MEDDLING
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FEDERAL GROWTH GUIDE CRITICIZED AS MEDDLING

BY CORY REISS

WASHINGTON -- Erick Gustafson grew up in a different Sarasota than he left seven years ago. Condominiums and vacation homes have replaced trailer parks on Longboat Key. Hotels have risen. Strip malls have been built. Countless tiffs about signage and aesthetics have flared.

01/01/2003
New Energy Study Downplays Efficiency Gains
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New Energy Study Downplays Efficiency Gains

Absent a prolonged drop in Americans' living standards, America will still need significant new supplies of energy to fuel its growing economy regardless of conservation efforts, says a new study by the Citizens for a Sound Economy Foundation (CSE), a grassroots advocacy and education organization dedicated to economic freedom. "Abundant Energy: The Building Block of Prosperity" rebuts the claim that America can avoid developing new sources of energy and modernizing its energy transmission infrastructure simply by relying on improved efficiency and conservation. In the entire post-war period from 1949, the CSE study observed that the U.S. economy reduced its energy intensity substantially -- cutting the amount of BTUs consumed per dollar of GDP virtually in half. But during the same period, demand for energy tripled nevertheless, largely because of strong economic growth. "Without the tripling of energy supplies, the strong economic growth that has made the U.S. the most powerful economy in history would not have been possible," conclude CSE analysts. Alliance spokesman Bruce Josten, Executive Vice President for Government Affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, said the study confirms an important point often missing in the energy debate. He noted that history and technological advances have shown that the U.S. can increase conservation and still grow its economy. But, he said, "We can't meet our energy demand through conservation alone, unless we halt economic progress, and I think most Americans would reject that approach." CSE also finds that "energy efficiency" is often misunderstood when used interchangeably with conservation. "Using less energy is efficient only if the cost of the resources needed to replace energy use is lower than the cost of the energy that is 'saved'," observes the study. For example, a household appliance may seem more efficient by using less energy, but may actually require a net increase in energy to produce, and is therefore less efficient than the product replaced. The Alliance for Energy and Economic Growth represents more than 550 energy users, ranging from small, independent businesses to the nation's largest manufacturers, as well as companies that generate and distribute energy from a diverse mix of sources -- including natural gas, oil, coal and nuclear energy -- supplying millions of households and workplaces.

01/01/2003
CLUB NOTES
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CLUB NOTES

Republican club The Dallas North Republican Club will meet at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Taffy's Restaurant, 1902 Promenade on Coit Road, between Belt Line and Arapaho roads in Richardson. The speaker will be Tina Peyton, who is North Texas field manager of the Texas Division of Citizens for a Sound Economy.

01/01/2003
SOCIAL SECURITY REFORM TOPIC OF JAMESTOWN FORUM
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SOCIAL SECURITY REFORM TOPIC OF JAMESTOWN FORUM

BY FROM STAFF REPORTS

A public-interest group is offering Triad residents a chance to learn more about Social Security reform this evening. N.C. Citizens for a Sound Economy is hosting the 90-minute forum beginning at 7 p.m. in the Jamestown Civic Center, 301 E. Main St. The presentation includes remarks by U.S. Rep. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., who has championed reform of the retirement system, and by a staff member of the group that focuses on economic issues of national importance. U.S. Rep. Howard Coble of Greensboro also will be on hand.

01/01/2003
GAS REVOLT
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GAS REVOLT

BY John McCaslin

Boston had their tea party. It was only a matter of time before Washingtonians began taking to the streets to voice their displeasure with the high price of a gallon of gasoline. For instance, bureaucrats leaving the headquarters of the Environmental Protection Agency last week were handed pink slips, or a "Notice of Termination" on pink paper, as they headed down into the subway. The notice read: "To: All EPA Bureaucrats "From: The American Taxpayer

01/01/2003
R.J. Reynolds protests Dole assessment plan
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R.J. Reynolds protests Dole assessment plan

WINSTON-SALEM - The largest cigarette maker in North Carolina says its disagrees with a proposal by Sen. Elizabeth Dole, R-N.C., to charge cigarette companies an assessment to pay for a proposed buyout of federal tobacco quota. A buyout could pump at least $4 billion into the state's rural economy, but officials at R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. say the assessment breaks the spirit of Dole's pledge not to support tax increases. "This appears to be a classic bait and switch," said Tommy Payne, the senior vice president for external relations at Reynolds.

01/01/2003
Bush Chooses Reagan-Era Republican for UNESCO
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Bush Chooses Reagan-Era Republican for UNESCO

BY Jim Lobe

Published on Thursday, October 2, 2003 by OneWorld.net WASHINGTON -- The enthusiasm of internationalists over the return of the United States to the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) after almost 20 years' boycott may be dampened by President Bush's choice to be the next ambassador at the Paris-based agency.

01/01/2003
Kulongoski reflects on first year
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Kulongoski reflects on first year

BY BRAD CAIN, Associated Press writer

SALEM, Ore. -- In his first year in office, Democratic Gov. Ted Kulongoski antagonized his labor allies with a strong push to reduce pension benefits of public employees and freeze state worker salaries. At the same time, Kulongoski worked with legislators including Republicans to crank out a budget deal and pass bills aimed at giving a boost to the state's economy.

01/01/2003
Don't Negotiate With Yourself
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Press Release

Don't Negotiate With Yourself

© 2002 Copley News Service, 12/31/2002 I was really disappointed to read in the Wall Street Journal last week that some officials inside the Bush administration are attempting to convince the president neither to accelerate the 2001 income-tax rate reductions nor to shorten the period of time that companies must wait to write off investment in new plant and equipment. Both of these changes to the president’s economic growth and jobs package would unduly weaken it.

12/31/2002
2002: Auto Insurance Choice and Competition Dwindles, Consumers Suffer, According to the Coalition for Auto Insurance Co…
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2002: Auto Insurance Choice and Competition Dwindles, Consumers Suffer, According to the Coalition for Auto Insurance Co…

For New Jerseyans seeking auto insurance coverage, 2002 will likely be known as the worst year in state history for auto insurance choice and competition. "Drivers are facing the ugly truth about auto insurance in New Jersey," said John Friedman, chairman of the Coalition for Auto Insurance Competition. "Excessive regulation and political interference is forcing auto insurers to flee New Jersey, leaving drivers with little choice and few options." More than twenty-five auto insurers have left New Jersey during the last ten years. In 2002, seven auto insurers either left or announced plans to stop doing business in New Jersey: - January: Harleysville Insurance Company agrees to pay Palisades Safety and Insurance Association and Palisades Insurance Company $4.7 million to take the 16,000 vehicles Harleysville insures. - June: State officials approve State Farm Indemnity's request to withdraw from New Jersey. - September: State Farm Indemnity starts non-renewing 96,000 New Jersey auto policies as part of its withdrawal. - September: Twin City Fire Insurance Company, part of Hartford Financial Services, agrees to pay Palisades Safety & Insurance Association and Palisades Insurance Company $9.2 million to take the 24,000 vehicles Twin City insures in New Jersey. - September: Great American Insurance Company agrees to pay Palisades Safety & Insurance Association and Palisades Insurance Company $7.0 million to take the 24,000 vehicles Great American insurers in New Jersey. - December: The Robert Plan shuts its New Jersey business, non-renewing its last 20,000 vehicles through a Department of Banking and Insurance-ordered "solvent run-off" precipitated by the company's hazardous financial condition. - December: Central Mutual Insurance Company announces it is leaving New Jersey. - December: Merchants Insurance Group announces it is leaving New Jersey. Each month, the owners of more than 4,000 vehicles learn that their auto insurance coverage is not being renewed, forcing these policyholders to search for replacement coverage in a market bereft of sufficient choice and competition. The Coalition points to the state's excessive regulation of auto insurance as the culprit behind the lack of sufficient auto insurance choice and competition. "Without swift action by state lawmakers, consumers will likely face fewer choices in 2003 as excessive regulations and political influence continues to take its toll," said Friedman. "Drivers need a regulatory system that promotes competition, encourages companies to sell auto insurance in New Jersey, and creates a stable market that offers more choices for consumers." "Until reforms are made that promote greater consumer choice and industry competition, insurers will continue to lack the incentive to grow and invest capital in New Jersey, leaving drivers in a lurch," said Friedman. The latest figures show New Jersey has 47 percent fewer companies selling auto insurance than Illinois and more than a third fewer than neighboring New York and Pennsylvania. More than twenty auto insurance companies have left New Jersey in the past ten years, and two have left in the last year. The Coalition has been working to educate New Jersey drivers and policy makers to stem the state's unprecedented auto insurance crisis precipitated by the deterioration of the financial health of New Jersey's auto insurance industry. The group is calling for passage and enactment of the New Jersey Auto Insurance Competition and Choice Act (A-2625 and S-1999), which outlines reforms that will attract more auto insurers to New Jersey by permitting companies to use industry-accepted standard underwriting methods already used in nearly every state. "While 2002 has been a bad year for auto insurance consumers, 2003 does offer hope for meaningful reform," said Friedman. "Governor McGreevey has acknowledged the problem and promised to present his own proposal in January to stimulate auto insurance choice and competition," The Coalition welcomes the participation of consumers, businesses, and associations who seek to work together to bring about meaningful and responsible auto insurance reform. Members include the National Association of Independent Insurers, Insurance Council of New Jersey, American Insurance Association, New Jersey Chamber of Commerce, Independent Insurance Agents of New Jersey, Citizens for a Sound Economy, National Association of Mutual Insurance Companies, New Jersey Association of REALTORS, Professional Insurance Agents of New Jersey, New Jersey Food Council, New Jersey Retail Merchants Association, NJ SEED (Society for Environmental, Economic Development), Somerset County Chamber of Commerce and the Commerce and Industry Association of New Jersey. CONTACT: Coalition for Auto Insurance Competition Ernie Landante, 973/799-0200 www.njcaic.org URL: http://www.businesswire.com

12/30/2002

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