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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 23, 2003 | Evan Halper and Jeffrey L. Rabin, Times Staff Writers
The failure of state lawmakers to close California's historic budget gap is about to exact a hefty price: Taxpayers should expect to pay up to $271.6 million in interest and fees -- enough to build 35 elementary schools or pay 5,000 teachers for a year -- if officials succeed this week in getting the largest "bridge loan" in state history. The $11-billion, short-term loan -- like using one credit card to pay off another -- is needed to keep the state solvent through summer.
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WORLD
February 7, 2003 | Ching-Ching Ni, Times Staff Writer
SHANGHAI -- At 27, Shi Yuzhu used his life savings of $500 to start a software empire that he appropriately named Giant. His success seemed so unstoppable people called him China's Bill Gates. But his believers were less charitable when Shi's multimillion-dollar company collapsed, earning the whiz kid and CEO the dubious honor of being one of China's biggest failures.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 2, 2002 | Gary Polakovic, Times Staff Writer
Blitzed by a well-organized lobbying effort, Southern California air quality officials Friday postponed a decision to ban a solvent widely used by dry cleaners, but showed some interest in a more lenient measure drafted by the chemical industry and supported by the Davis administration. In a raucous, all-day hearing, nearly 600 dry cleaners converged on the regional clean-air agency's Diamond Bar headquarters to defend the chemical they call "perc."
OPINION
October 28, 2002
In "How to Get Clothes Clean?" (Oct. 21), Jon Meijer, vice president of the International Fabricare Institute, calls perchloroethylene "fabulous" for its ability to remove stains "without damaging fabric." It must be a peculiar luxury to put clothing ahead of people's health and safety. As the son and grandson of dry cleaners, I am relieved that action is underway to eliminate this chemical. This work should have begun a generation ago, when health agencies first spotted the carcinogenic trail of "perc."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 21, 2002 | Gary Polakovic, Times Staff Writer
It's called "perc" -- the smelly solvent your clothes soak in when you take them to the dry cleaner. Although it has been removing stains and keeping clothes crisp for nearly 50 years, air quality officials are about to send it the way of leaded gasoline with the nation's first proposed ban on the chemical.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 28, 2002 | TIM REITERMAN, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Over vehement objections from Pacific Gas & Electric Co., a federal bankruptcy judge granted state regulators permission Wednesday to submit an alternative to the utility's own plan for reorganizing its finances. PG&E argued that a proposal outlined by the California Public Utilities Commission was off by billions of dollars and was not credible. Judge Dennis Montali called the plan challenging but said it was legally permissible and deserved consideration.
NEWS
February 8, 2002 | RICHARD SIMON and EDMUND SANDERS and RICHARD T. COOPER, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
Former Enron Chief Executive Jeffrey K. Skilling testified Thursday that he heard no warnings and saw no hint of trouble last year as one of the nation's largest corporations careened toward disaster. While describing himself as "devastated and apologetic about what Enron has come to represent," Skilling insisted before a House panel that the company was "solvent and highly profitable" when he resigned Aug. 14, only 3 1/2 months before the energy trader's collapse.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 10, 2002 | From Times Staff Reports
A 35-year-old Anaheim man was severely burned Wednesday when fumes from gasoline he used as a cleaning solvent ignited inside his home, authorities said. The father of four, who was not identified, suffered second- and third-degree burns over at least 40% of his body, including his head. The man was using gasoline as a cleaning agent in the bathroom of his home in the 1100 block of South Lemon Street.
SPORTS
December 5, 2001 | Shav Glick
Sports fans who fondly remember ballparks named Jack Murphy, Candlestick, Joe Robbie and the Astrodome must be enjoying the demise of some fancy monikers now in use. For instance: Enron Field, home of baseball's Houston Astros. Naming rights were to be worth $100 million over 30 years to the Astros, but Enron, the energy company behind the deal, has filed for bankruptcy.
BUSINESS
November 14, 2001 | Associated Press
Troubled high-speed Internet provider Covad Communications Inc. signed a $150-million loan and marketing agreement with onetime rival SBC Communications Inc., sending its stock up 34%. The deal is expected to provide enough money to keep Covad alive until it starts generating positive cash flow, now expected by the second half of 2003. SBC will make a one-time, $75-million prepayment secured by Covad assets. The deal does not increase SBC's ownership in Covad, which is now about 5%.
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