LOCAL NEWS FOR THURSDAY, MARCH 20, 2003
'I'll see you all when it's over,'
After two months of dust storms, desert training and nearly unbearable boredom 20 miles south of the Iraq border, 1st Sgt. David Foster of Colerain Township paused for a quick e-mail back home. His family expects it will be the last message for awhile.
SPECIAL SECTION: Showdown in Iraq

Abortion debates taken to state level
Despite the U.S. Senate's vote last week to ban so-called partial-birth abortions, most battles over the future of abortion in America are now being waged outside of Washington.

Council might rethink deal
Cincinnati City Council might need to revisit whether it wants to remain a party to the historic collaborative agreement signed last year, Mayor Charlie Luken said Wednesday.

Class act: Ring lost 40 years returned
A Mount Healthy High School graduate and his 1961 class ring have been reunited more than 40 years after the day it was lost.

Guide to Colerain
With 60,144 residents, Colerain is the largest township in Ohio. But here, being the biggest isn't a bad thing. In this section, the seventh in the Enquirer's 'Great Neighborhoods' series, we'll tell you about everything that makes Colerain a Great Neighborhood.
Previous 'Great Neighborhood' reports:
AndersonBlue AshFairfieldLebanonMason & Deerfield Twp.West Chester


TRISTATE REACTS TO WAR
Cheers, sadness in Tristate greet airstrikes
Sadness, anxiety and cheers swept the Tristate as the first images of America's latest war flickered across television screens Wednesday night.


New intelligence contributed to decision to start air strikes
The decision to commence air strikes over Baghdad Wednesday night was the unexpected result of fresh, last-minute intelligence and had not been planned in advance, said U.S. Rep. Rob Portman, R-Cincinnati, a House member with close ties to the Bush administration.
War 101: Conflict is center stage in some classrooms
Prom plans have given way to heated debates about the Persian Gulf. Homework is halted for talk of United Nations resolutions. And students have a greater appetite for international news than cafeteria fare.
Local Iraqi-American feels the glares
She's a native of Iraq who walks an emotional tightrope as a United States citizen.
Churches, members often split on war
The nation's ranking Christian clergy have formed their strongest anti-war alliance in at least a generation, but the people in the pews don't necessarily agree with their leaders.
In war, people here turn to faith, family, TV news
People are turning to prayer, protest and one another.
Voices from the Tristate
Leaders react to the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom

IN THE TRISTATE
Stroll to stadium may change
Reds fans will find roughly the same amount of downtown parking available when they head to Great American Ball Park. But don't forget your walking shoes because some of the spaces aren't as close as at Cinergy Field.


Businesses sue to stop land seizure
Several businesses in Clifton Heights sued in federal court Wednesday to stop the city of Cincinnati from taking their property for a development project.
Woman slain in apartment on quiet street in Covedale
A Covedale resident saw a frightening thing Wednesday: A man barged into a neighbor's apartment, told the elderly woman inside to be quiet and ordered her to lie on the floor.
Restored bells ringing again
DELHI TOWNSHIP - Restored chapel bells at the College of Mount St. Joseph rang Wednesday morning for the first time in 20 years, a sweet sound in melodic contrast to the noon warning sirens that followed, reminding Cincinnatians of a possible war with Iraq.
CPS examines priorities for spending in 2003-04 budget
Cincinnati Public School officials discussed 2003-04 budget priorities Wednesday.
Obituary: John E. Thomas, church deacon
SPRINGFIELD TWP. - The garden adjacent to Page Tower - a 10-story apartment building developed by Union Baptist Church, downtown - is dedicated to Deacon Emeritus John E. Thomas.
Tristate A.M. Report

ENQUIRER COLUMNISTS
PULFER: Shirley Jester
Shirley Jester was a lot more than her music, but it's kind of hard to talk about her without it.


HOWARD: Some Good News
A University of Cincinnati student is taking time out to join the fight against HIV/AIDS in Africa.

BUTLER, WARREN, CLERMONT
Owners sue over lead in soil
LIBERTY TOWNSHIP - In the second lawsuit filed over potentially hazardous lead levels at their new subdivision, 17 families on Wednesday sued the builder, developer and others, seeking damages and demanding that the land be restored to its former farmland state.


Batavia's school chief steps down
BATAVIA - The new director of communications and student services for Batavia Local Schools began his new job this week with a press release announcing his resignation from his previous post.
Spring a relief for Lebanon road crews
LEBANON - Friday is the first day of spring. And probably even more so than anyone else in town, the Streets Department is ready for some good weather.
Anonymous writer blasted
They don't know who sent it (although it apparently was a county employee), but Clermont County commissioners didn't appreciate a recent anonymous letter.

OHIO
Dayton superintendent wants five schools closed
DAYTON, Ohio - The city's superintendent of schools has recommended closing five schools in June, resulting in the reassignment of 1,872 students and 132 teachers.


Parish united in support of priest accused of abuse
VAN WERT, Ohio - Blue ribbons are tied to the doors of St. Mary of the Assumption Catholic Church, a show of support for a priest who has been on leave since January after being accused of sexually abusing a teen in the 1980s.
Brinkman only Ohio lawmaker to oppose 14th amendment
COLUMBUS - A Cincinnati lawmaker has drawn criticism for being the lone dissenter in Ohio's long-delayed ratification of the 14th Amendment, which guarantees equal protection under the law for all U.S. citizens.
States step up terror security
COLUMBUS - More state troopers patrolling Ohio highways. Tighter security at uranium processing plants in Ohio and Kentucky. A wait-and-see attitude in Indiana.
Ohio Moments

Package carrying West Nile explodes at Columbus airport
COLUMBUS - A package labeled as containing the West Nile virus exploded at a Federal Express facility, forcing the evacuation of about 50 workers.
Professor hopes to save dying Indian language
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio - Sticky notes bearing words and attached to Linette Bacon's body are part of a professor's plan to preserve a dying American Indian language.
Artist master of disciplines
COLUMBUS - Artist Aminah Robinson faced a challenge when she set out to depict the winter home of one of the country's largest circuses.

KENTUCKY
Span to reopen in April as Newport Southbank Bridge
NEWPORT - The purple bridge over the Ohio River - the span formerly known as the L&N Railroad Bridge - reopens the last weekend of April.


NKU tuition to go up 16.4%
HIGHLAND HEIGHTS - Kentucky residents attending Northern Kentucky University full time this fall will pay 16.4 percent more in tuition than a year ago, the largest annual increase in the five-year tenure of president Dr. James Votruba.
Covington rent law vote delayed
COVINGTON - City officials delayed a vote on a tough new "two strikes and you're out" renter law until April 1, after some Eastside residents complained the proposal unfairly targets the black community.
Drawbridge hotel drops adult movies
FORT MITCHELL - One of the Tristate's largest hotels has decided to join four other area hotels in withdrawing adult movies from its guest services.
Head of state ACLU to take job in Calif.
LOUISVILLE - The head of the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky will step down as executive director Friday to lead another organization.
Bates says he had no choice about Virginia taxes, license
LA GRANGE, Ky. - Hunter Bates, insisting he has always been a Kentucky resident, concedes he paid income taxes and got a driver's license in Virginia, but that he had no choice.
ADD, autism link may be overlooked, author says
NEWPORT - Diane Kennedy, mother of three, has been on a personal mission for the last eight years to inform people about the relationship between attention deficit disorder (ADD) and autism.
Day at the races - with hoops - to fight illness
FLORENCE - Turfway Park is today combining two of Kentucky's loves, basketball and horses.
SPECIAL
Priests and Sexual Misconduct
Four priests in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati and two priests who formerly served in the Diocese of Covington have been suspended and/or accused of sexual misconduct in a scandal that has swept across the country. Click here for an archive of Enquirer reports.

Erpenbeck Investigation
Bill Erpenbeck spent years building a company that appears to be crumbling. One of the Tristate's biggest home builders, the Erpenbeck Co., is under federal investigation for a suspected bank fraud that is affecting lenders, subcontractors and home owners. Click here for links to all Enquirer reports.