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News In Brief

By CompiledRobert KilbornLance Carden, and Elisabetta Coletti / June 4, 1999



HEY, WHATEVER WORKS We're almost at the 21st century, but repair crews had to use strictly medieval methods to restore phone service last week to flooded Volga, Iowa. The town's bridge was washed away, and workers had no equipment to stretch replacement cable across the Volga River. Until Don Dunbar arrived with his archery bow. He taped fishing line to an arrow and shot it into the opposite bank. The repair guys attached a nylon cord to the line. Dunbar reeled it in, then tied the cable to the nylon, which was winched back across, and Volga was connected again.

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SOUNDS GOOD; LET'S USE IT

Speaking of utilities, the Washington Public Power Supply System - known as "Whoops" by ratepayers - hired consultants for $140,000 to come up with a catchy new name that wouldn't remind people of its troubled financial past. But the choice, Energy Northwest, turned out to belong to someone else. So, oops, Whoops had to shell out $123,000 more for the exclusive rights.

Should NATO invade Kosovo? Well, maybe, Europeans say

In an opinion poll conducted in Europe last month by the market-research group Taylor Nelson Sofres, 49 percent of respondents favored NATO intervention on the ground in Kosovo; 40 percent opposed it. Support was highest in Denmark, lowest in Greece. The survey of more than 9,000 people in 12 of the 15 European Union countries was published Monday in the Danish newspaper Berlingske Tidende. The 12 nations and the percentage of respondents in each who said they viewed the NATO campaign favorably:

Denmark 70%

France 68

Luxembourg 61

Britain 54

Belgium 53

Germany 52

Ireland 46

Finland 44

Austria 41

Italy 37

Spain 34

Greece 2

- Reuters