News In Brief

GEE, I THOUGHT I LOOKED COOL

Is it illegal to wear a sky-blue suit with yellow socks? Asad Osman Hassan Abdullahi has wondered that since August 1995, when, apparently, his fashion sense resulted in being denied entry into New Zealand. As we pick up the story, the microbiologist was trying to board a flight to Auckland from Singapore. But immigration officials decided his "whole demeanor" - his necktie also wasn't knotted - did not fit "somebody with tertiary qualifications." So they jailed him for two days and ordered him deported. In the end, however, he straightened things out and now is living and working in New Zealand. Plus, he won an apology and a confidential out-of-court settlement.

YOU CAN SEE THE REPLAY

The BBC has refused to show live coverage of the Queen Mother's 100th birthday celebration in July. Why? Because, published reports say, it would clash with a popular soap opera. The broadcaster added that rescheduling its programs would be too difficult.

Do you rent? Then you may not want to live in Louisville

Greater Louisville, Ky., is the costliest metropolitan area in the US for a family of four who rent their home - at least in terms of the tax burden. That's the finding of Runzheimer International, a Rochester, Wis., management consultant, based on a combination of state and local income levies, a 6 percent sales tax, motor-vehicle tax, and withholding for Social Security. With no mortgage payments to deduct, such a family on yearly wages of $60,000 pays $15,311 in taxes, or 25.5 percent of income. The cheapest: Anchorage, Alaska, where there are no state, local, or sales taxes, and the bite is 16.9 percent. The highest-tax cities for renters:

1. Louisville, Ky. $15,311

2. Washington 15,193

3. Philadelphia 14,717

4. Honolulu 14,543

5. Little Rock, Ark. 14,513

6. Birmingham, Ala. 14,511

7. Tulsa, Okla. 14,462

8. Baltimore 14,386

9. Charlotte, N.C. 13,382

10. St. Louis 14,319

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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