SMOKING BAN GOING SMOOTHLY

by Jesse W. Coleman

News Reporter

Cigarette manufacturing and tobacco companies have come under fire on television and in court rooms all over the country, with the major issue being the hazardous impact of secondary smoking.

Citing the danger of secondary smoke, UH officials banned smoking inside all facilities and vehicles owned or leased by the university March 1, 1993, the exception being in residential areas where occupants agree to permit smoking, leased public facilities, UH Hilton and the UC Arbor. Also, smoking is allowed for authorized artistic performances and academic research projects that involve smoking.

Smoking in private offices in any university building was prohibited at the beginning of this year. Before, smokers could smoke in their private offices as long as they operated an approved air filter.

Elwyn Lee, vice president for Student Affairs, said he likes the policy and is satisfied with the way it has been implemented. "People who have not decided to smoke no longer have to suffer the damages or negative effects of smoking by others," Lee said.

He said administrators of the policy sought to balance the right of people who want to smoke and those who do not. "For people who want to smoke, that is a personal decision, but others shouldn't have to suffer the negative resolves," Lee said.

Lee said the university offered, and continues to offer the option of cessation for people who want to kick the habit. He cited the smoking ban as a good example of how to effectively make a decision that affects various sectors of the constituency. He said a majority of the faculty and students supported the decision. "It wasn't a moralist or religious decision. We looked into what people thought, and all the different points of view before we made your decision," said Lee.

Lee said response to the policy has been good primarily because the policy is a fair policy. He said the smoking ban wasn't made to restrict anyone's rights, but instead to ensure that rights of others were not violated.

Rosemary Hughes, assistant director of the Counseling and Testing Service, said CTS is not offering a class this semester, because there isn't a demand for the anti-smoking habit classes. She said anyone who wants to quit smoking can come by the Counseling and Testing Service and get help from counselors individually.

ARA (the campus dining service) General Manager Bill Wentz said the number of customers frequenting the American Cafe and Coog's Cafe declined after the UH-wide smoking ban was imposed in university cafeterias last year. "Our regular clientele just didn't come any more, and the few that do come, I notice them smoking their cigarettes," Wentz said.

He said the area in the American Cafe that was once designed for smoking is virtually empty since the smoking ban. Wentz said because of the smoking ban, the cafe may have lost 25 to 30 people at lunchtime.

"Our bar business went down by 35 to 40 percent in the first few months of the smoking ban," Wentz said. "It's slowly drifting back, but I don't think it will ever recover the number of people who left," he said.

"The university was wise in setting the policy, even if it is awkward to some people," Wentz said.

"Any losses are short term. For the long term, I think people will realize we're going in the right direction," he added.

 

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NEW, RECYCLED BLOOD FLOWING THROUGH SA

by Tanya Eiserer

Daily Cougar Staff

At Monday night's first Students' Association Senate meeting of the 31st administration, Angie Milner officially was sworn in as the new SA president.

With Jason Gregory from the University Hearing Board swearing Milner in, she swore to uphold and preserve the SA's constitution.

"Everyone is very motivated. Senators have already been coming in and letting me know what concerns their college," Milner said.

After Milner was sworn in, she swore in 23 new senators. Most of the new senators except for a few are new to the Senate. Henry Bell, the vice president-elect, was not there to be sworn in.

The mood of the senators was jovial with some doing Monty Python impressions.

Jeff Fuller, the former student regent, and Justin McMurtry, a former senator, vied for the speaker position. The showdown between McMurty and Fuller reflects the divisions of the last senate.

Fuller was closely allied with his brother's administration and Uniting Students; and McMurtry with Coy Wheeler, the last speaker, and the Initative party.

Some senators objected to having the speaker selection at the first meeting since the Senate code calls for speaker elections at the second meeting.

Eric Bishop, a senator from the college of education, moved to "defer" the election retroactively.

McMurtry said that there is some question as to the technical legality of the Senate's deferring an elecation retroactively since defer generally means to postpone.

Fuller won on the first vote.

"I feel that for the past two years the Senate has lacked leadership. I want to make sure that every senator serving knows the issues of their college and how to represent their college," said Fuller.

The race for speaker protem took four separate votes before Jennifer Zuber, a senator from the College of Law, was elected.

After the third vote, Zuber joked, "Since I was five years old, all I ever wanted to do was be speaker protem." She then did a little tap dance for the senators.

Senator Hunter Jackson from the College of Business Administration, who was nominated for the speaker protem position said, "Leadership is about taking responsibility for senate relationships, about building coalitions. If we are going to get legislation passed then we have got to get every person working togethor to make a difference."

While senators were trying to make up their minds on who to elect as speaker protem, Steve Shortt, the director of finance, was writing cute songs on legal paper.

One of them said,"Lonely Shortt Director Guy."

Pat Brown, chairman of Frontier Fiesta, Activities Funding Board chair and out-going vice president, gave a summary report on Frontier Fiesta. He said that the UH police department estimated the crowds at between 15,000 and 20,000.

"We had a lot of participation from the colleges. For three days, you see all these groups who hardly socialize get together and celebrate the university," Brown said.

 

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COOGS RALLY IN 9TH, TOP SHSU

Cougar Sports Service

HUNTSVILLE -- Houston rebounded from a disappointing three-game sweep by Texas Tech in Lubbock to steal a 6-5 victory from the Sam Houston State Bearkats Tuesday.

Third baseman J.J. Matzke singled in the ninth inning to score left fielder Carlos Perez for the winning run.

David Hamilton (2-1) struck out three batters in the final two innings for the victory. He also allowed a hit and a walk.

The Cougars improved to 26-18 and SHSU dropped to 23-18.

The Bearkats tied the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the eighth after catcher Jamie Branham walked to start the inning, was singled to second and then scored on an error by shortstop Ryan Elizondo.

Sam Houston State also scored single runs in the sixth and seventh.

Perez, (2-for-4 batting, three runs scored) had given Houston a 5-2 lead in the second, breaking a tie with a three-run homer, his third of the year, off Daniel Boedeker.

Starter Jamey DeBruin was charged with the runs after failing to record an out in the second. He allowed five runs on four hits and four walks with two strikeouts.

SHSU shortstop Jason Smiga added a solo home run in the sixth inning, making it a 5-3 game.

But Jeff Albright (1-1) allowed Matzke's game-winning hit in the ninth to earn the loss.

Third baseman Hans Buth had the big day for the Bearkats, going 1-for-3 with three RBIs. SHSU collected 11 hits off five UH pitchers. Houston had 10 hits.

Cougar center fielder Dustin Carr had another productive day after singling twice in three at-bats and driving in a run.

Right fielder Shane Buteaux had a slight letdown in his race with Rice center fielder Jose Cruz Jr. for player of the year honors. He went 0-for-4 and scored a run.

 

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SFA TAKES 3-STROKE LEAD AT UH'S AAII

Cougar Sports Service

Stephen F. Austin took a three-stroke lead heading into today's final round of the All-America Intercollegiate Invitational hosted by Houston at the Old Orchard Golf Course in Richmond.

The Lumberjacks, led by Brian Harper's two-round total of 3-under-par 141, combined for a 7-over-par 583 through 36 holes.

Sam Houston State, No. 35 Baylor and 16th-ranked Texas A&M were tied for second at 586. Southern Methodist (29th) was fifth at 588.

No. 23 Houston shares sixth place with Southwestern Louisiana (41st), seven shots back at 590.

Rounding out the field is No. 35 Tulsa (591, 8th), Rice (596), Maryland (601), Texas Tech (605), and College of Charleston (614).

David Lawrence III, a sophomore from Rice, shot the low second round score of 68 to pull into a five-way tie for the individual lead with Harper, A&M's Marco Goriana and Anthony Rodriquez and Texas Tech's Bryan Novoa.

Senior Dean Larsson and junior Anders Hansen sat in a tie for 14th at 2-over-par to lead the Cougars.

Other Cougars include Noel Barfoot tied for 28th with a 5-over-par in medal play, Brad Montgomery (7-over, tied 35th), Eric Bogar (9-over, tied 41st), Brad Schihab (9-over, tied 41st, medal play), Lawrence O'Neil (10-over, tied 48th, medal play), and Mark Franklin (11-over, tied 54th).

 

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JOEL JUMPING AT HOUSTON SHOW

by Rosario Pena

Daily Cougar Staff

Billy Joel in the Summit last Wednesday night was hot! From the opening number to the last piano keys of the final encore, Joel had the crowds wanting more than just the exhilarating two hour performance.

Despite his age, Joel proved he can still rock and roll and with humor too, as he searched for the worst seats in the house and decided upon the suites high above and quoted John Lennon that "the rich need only 'rattle their jewels.'"

After the fast-paced "No Man's Land," the dark arena was filled with flashing bright lights set to the tune "Pressure." A grand piano rose from under the stage and Joel played an excerpt of "The Yellow Rose of Texas," before rolling back to 1973 for "The Ballad of the Billy the Kid." After which he announced that "everything in that last song was bullshit."

Welcoming members of Pink Floyd, Joel sang a very moving "Lullabye (Goodnight My Angel)." The mood turned upbeat with "River of Dreams" and "Angry Young Man." The audience stood in excitement as the factory whistle for "Allentown" then the superbly done "Scene from an Italian Restaurant" before Joel walked off stage.

He returned to the back of the stage, and went into "My Life" and "I Go To Extremes." Joel walked to the front of the stage while reminiscing about his first time in Houston, and did "An Innocent Man" with a great performance of his only female band member, who hit all the high notes. With accordion in hand, he broke into "Downeastern Alexa."

Afterward the lights went out and as only sounds of a helicopter overhead could be heard, Joel performed an excellent rendition of "Goodnight Saigon," that ended with the sounds of a helicopter vibrating the arena and two spotlights flashing around in helicopter fashion.

Starting with "We Didn't Start the Fire," Joel changed the pace to an upbeat note with an Elvis-like performance of "It's Still Rock and Roll to Me." With the crowds all standing, the usual mellowed down Joel went wild. Jumping up and down and baton-twirling the microphone stand with the classic "You May Be Right" then carried on into an energetic "Only the Good Die Young" that featured a great sax solo atop Joel's piano.

For his encore, the crowds were kept on their feet with "Big Shot." Waving to the fans with a limped hand, Joel exited only to return for the final encore. As the piano notes were heard, the crowd roared with excitement as the harmonica signaled the all-time favorite "Piano Man." With the chorus being sung by the audience, Joel only paused to look around and listen as everyone sang to him: "Sing us a song you're the Piano Man/Sing us a song tonight/We're all in the mood for a melody/And you got us feeling alright." He waved goodbye to all even those in the skyboxes before exiting down stage.

 

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PICKERING: STUDENTS COME FIRST

by Rivka Gewirtz

Daily Cougar Staff

Houston community leaders like FOX Television News’ Mike Barajas, congressional contestant Sheila Jackson Lee and Representative Garnett Coleman gathered over lunch to celebrate UH’s accomplishments and to try to understand some of the problems the university faces.

UH President James Pickering stressed the importance of UH building strong partnerships with and serving the Houston Community during his annual Report to the Community Tuesday at the Hyatt Regency.

While the University struggles for funds and deals with "reshaping" both academically and administratively, both Pickering and Chair of the Board of Regents Beth Morian stressed the "students first" motto. Morian said UH would "pull back the ivy from (our) tower" and "deliver" better student services and "excellent" teaching.

Pickering, Barajas, UH Chancellor Alexander Schilt, Morian, UH law student Patrick Lara and Honors student Tamara Conner all talked about the positive aspects that Houston’s urban environment has on the university.

Pickering said partnerships with the community have taken UH "across Scott street to Yates High school" and then "10,000 miles into space," with the Wake Shield Facility.

Barajas shared anecdotes of his time at UH with the crowd telling them how professors "literally" placed him in his career.

He said UH got him an internship at Channel Two news.

Barajas also said he was from a family that had little money and not "a lot of resources." UH offered Barajas a good "affordable and accessible" education that still offered him the chance to "handle his adult responsibilities."

While schools like Harvard and University of Texas tried to recruit Conner, who is a senior honors student majoring in English, she says she chose UH because it is in a city where she could "grow up" and receive an "excellent education."

Conner, who says she will take what she learns at UH and "give it back to inner city youth," said she has already benefited from learning in an urban environment. She presently interns at Child and Adolescent Development, Inc, where she works with troubled teens.

Lara, a law student, has dedicated his time to UH’s Legal Aid Clinic. The program provides legal help for people who cannot afford it.

Pickering ended his speech by telling the crowd that UH would not be successful until everybody in Houston held personal "stake" in UH.

UH, Pickering said, must be "owned" by everyone in Houston.

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