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Specter to push asbestos suit bill

Wed., April 20, 2005

Washington Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Arlen Specter said Tuesday he plans to move ahead with legislation to end asbestos liability lawsuits in exchange for a $140 billion victims trust fund despite concerns from fellow Republicans.

After a meeting with Judiciary Committee Republicans, Specter, R-Pa., said his committee might vote on the bill in the next two weeks.

The legislation would require insurers and business groups to put $140 billion into a trust fund in exchange for ending the lawsuits.

Archdiocese backs off priest monitoring policy

Milwaukee The Archdiocese of Milwaukee has backed off a policy for now that would have allowed church officials to search the homes or computers of priests accused of sexual misconduct.

Archbishop Timothy Dolan said Tuesday he would not put the policy into effect without “vigorous consultation” with priests. The archdiocese’s advisory council will review the policy April 28 before Dolan makes a final decision.

The archdiocese is still grappling with lawsuits over clergy abuse.

No progress in search for missing official

Bellefonte, Pa. Authorities came up empty Tuesday in their hunt for a missing district attorney.

Centre County District Attorney Ray F. Gricar, 59, drove away from his home in central Pennsylvania on Friday. His car was found Saturday near a river about 45 miles away.

A helicopter team has been watching the river since Sunday. On Tuesday, authorities said they were also searching by boat and on foot along the river’s edge.


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