Lynn M. Walding, Administrator
e - NEWS
October 24, 2003
By Donovan Burba - The Daily Iowan
October 22, 2003
IOWA CITY -- UI officials announced Tuesday they will crack down on tailgating in the university Field House parking lot before football games in response to complaints about fan behavior.
Lot 6, a popular party spot for Hawkeye fans before, during, and after the games, will open at 8:30 a.m., an hour and a half later than usual, and admit only fans with football tickets. No one will be allowed to remain in the designated area after the opening kickoff.
The decision stems from numerous complaints the university has received about people in Lot 6 throwing bottles and cans at passers-by before Iowa's Homecoming game against Michigan on Oct. 4, said Steve Parrott, the director of University Relations. The problem appeared to be limited to that lot, located just south of the Field House, he said.
"We have people in many other lots who are tailgating and obviously enjoying beer or wine," he said. "But we haven't gotten to the point where those people have been throwing things and putting other people in danger."
Parrott acknowledged that tailgating spillover into other lots is a possibility, but he said the sheer number of complaints about Lot 6 made action necessary.
Duane Papke, the associate director of the UI police, wouldn't divulge how the new rules would be enforced or the possible penalties for violators, saying security measures are "just for the people who need to know to know."
The university's effort to decrease hooliganism on football Saturdays, when tens of thousands of fans descend on the Kinnick Stadium area, goes beyond Lot 6. University President David Skorton and Student Government President Nate Green each issued pleas for more civil behavior from Hawkeye supporters.
After ABC cameras briefly captured an Iowa fan holding up a vulgar sign, Skorton said he'd like to see Iowa fans leave vulgar T-shirts and posters at home - particularly when the game is nationally televised.
"Although our legal counsel for the university has advised us that it would be unconstitutional to ban vulgar T-shirts from Kinnick Stadium, that doesn't mean we have to condone them," he said at the weekly football press conference Tuesday. "In fact, we condemn them, and we urge all Iowa fans to express their support for the Hawkeyes in positive ways that do not demean guests at Kinnick Stadium."
Green, too, worried about how bad behavior in and around the stadium would cast a negative light on the school's national reputation.
"It's our hope that we bring attention to it so that fans understand that it's not just themselves that they're affecting," he said. "It's everyone who's watching the game on TV, it's all the other fans there, the families that are at the game, too."
But when asked about another potentially dangerous situation, fans rushing the field after victories, he backed down.
"I kinda like the tradition, actually," he said. "I think it's fun to go out there and celebrate with the team."
Following Nebraska's Oct. 11 loss to Missouri, a Husker player knocked over a Missouri fan who was taunting him on the field after the game, earning the player a one-game suspension. Iowa players, though, don't feel like fans on the field after a game pose much of a threat.
"I know there are schools out there that have pretty tough rivalries," said Iowa running back Fred Russell. "I know it can get to that point with some schools, [but] the fans in Iowa do a good job of not crossing the line like that."
DI reporter Mary Beth Larue contributed to this report.
By Jon Ericson, Staff Writer – Waterloo / Cedar Falls Courier Online Edition
October 14, 2003
CEDAR FALLS -- Instead of banning drink specials, the City Council is vowing to more vigorously enforce existing alcohol laws.
The city has been looking to cut down on underage and excessive drinking in Cedar Falls.
It had looked into passing an ordinance similar to Iowa City's, which outlawed a number of drink specials. Among those were all-you-can-drink offers and two-for-ones.
But after hearing from bar owners and summarizing that such a ban would not likely cut down on excessive drinking, the council's Administrative Committee decided to go in another direction.
Instead, the city will look to step up sting operations on bars and house parties, as well as those selling liquor for consumption off-premises.
Also, the committee passed a resolution that states the city will revoke liquor licenses if bars have four convictions for selling alcohol to minors in a three-year period.
A memo from Administration Committee Chairman Stan Smith states the city will look to beef up enforcement of liquor laws in bars and in the city at large.
"The stings will be on the lookout for serving to underage drinkers and for serving obviously intoxicated patrons. In other words --- if the bars dress like a lightning rod and behave like a lightning rod, they shouldn't be surprised if they attract lightning," said Smith's memo.
The city also may keep an eye on what drink specials are advertised.
"We're going to monitor the situation, and if you advertise we'll be looking," Smith said.
Bar owners warned against banning specials in Cedar Falls if the same wasn't done in Waterloo. They still want cooperation between the two cities.
"There should probably be a concerted effort to communicate with Waterloo, or we end up with the same situation," said Darin Beck, owner of the Barmuda nightclubs and restaurants. "We certainly don't want Cedar Falls to be the last place you'd want to go to buy a drink."
Smith said he has kept Waterloo city officials appraised of what Cedar Falls is doing, but hasn't received any commitment from them.
"I furnish them with the minutes of every meeting we have and every proposed resolution. Basically what I get is a pat on the butt and a 'thatta boy,'" said Smith.
The city has been monitoring neighborhoods and more proactively enforcing bootlegging laws this fall. Bootlegging is when one serves alcohol at a party and charges a cover charge or for individual drinks.
Smith also promised the city will keep a closer eye on suppliers of kegs and supermarkets promoting beer specials.
By Colleen Krantz and Jenna Buzzacco – Des Moines
October 20, 2003
DES MOINES -- Natalie Ferin claims teenagers have a growing fear of getting caught drunk.
"At every event, they tell us we're going to get checked," the Dowling Catholic High School senior said of school officials. "Everyone was drunk at prom last year. There were less people at the homecoming dance this year because of the enforcement."
The 17-year-old said she knows that students still drink, but fewer are doing so before school events.
A reduction in binge drinking among Iowa high school students is reflected in a new state health survey - but teen alcohol abuse rates remain dangerously high, experts say.
Last year, 36 percent of Iowa's 11th-graders reported binge drinking at least once during the previous month, according to the 2002 Iowa Youth Survey. That was down from three years earlier, when 40 percent reported binge drinking, defined as having five or more drinks of alcohol within a couple of hours.
Stricter laws and steady messages about the dangers of drinking appear to be reaching many teens.
Dowling senior Ben Smith, 18, said the Legislature's action to lower the threshold for adult drunken driving from .10 blood-alcohol content to .08 got several of his friends' attention - even though the drunken-driving level for teens in Iowa is .02.
"It makes a lot of people think," Smith said. "The cops have also buckled down a little bit."
The Iowa survey also says the proportion of eighth-graders binge drinking within a month of taking the survey also dipped slightly, from 14 percent in 1999 to 12 percent last year.
"When we talk in a positive way about the dropping numbers, we also point out that it's still a huge problem," said Diana Heard, a prevention supervisor at Employee and Family Resources in Des Moines. "Alcohol is still the number one abused drug in our country, so it's not something we want to let up on."
For example, even at the reduced numbers, Des Moines hospital officials say they treat an average of 15 teens each month for alcohol poisoning.
The youth survey, which included nearly 97,000 students at public and private schools in the state, further shows that more students abstained from alcohol last year than in 1999. Twenty-nine percent of last year's 11th-graders said they had never had a full drink of alcohol. Three years earlier, 25 percent had never had a drink.
"I think we've just increased our prevention efforts, period," said Janet Zwick, director of the state health department's Division of Health Promotion, Prevention and Addictive Behaviors.
Students today are bombarded at home, at school - and sometimes even by friends - with messages about the risks of abusing alcohol.
"In the past, we may have taught them how to say "no," but we've recognized that's not enough," said Ron Berg, vice president of the Mid-Eastern Council on Chemical Abuse in Iowa City.
"They have to know how to say "no" but also be connected with family, be able to talk to their parents and have a supportive environment at school. I think we've done a better job . . . but certainly have more room to improve."
Stricter rules for young drivers may have also helped discourage binge drinking, Zwick said.
Iowa law now requires young drivers to be accident- and ticket-free for a year before gaining full driving privileges. The licensing system, which limits teens' driving hours, took effect in 1999.
Evidence that fewer students are consuming alcohol might be useful in working to continue the trend.
"Sometimes kids drink alcohol because they think everyone else is doing it," Heard said. "If you can show them that the numbers are lower than they expect, they might be less likely to try it."
Roosevelt High School student Anthony Taylor said he doesn't drink and has no plans to drink.
"I think it's pretty nasty, and there's no reason to do it," said Taylor, 15. "I don't think that I will ever binge drink. There's just no point to it."
Tim Crawford, a student at Scavo Alternative High School, however, doesn't see drinking as a big deal. He drinks from time to time with his friends, especially during the summer.
"It's funny the way people act when they are drinking," he said. "They act crazy."
James Madewell, also a Scavo student, said: "Of course I drink. I drink all the time. It just calms my nerves. If you're getting ready to fight someone and someone else hands you a beer, you know, it just calms you down."
Alcohol is so accepted in society that it is going to be difficult to dramatically reduce the number of students abusing alcohol, Heard said.
"But we'll keep working to get those numbers down," she said.
Peter Nathan, a University of Iowa professor who studies alcohol abuse, said it's difficult for colleges to get a handle on binge drinking until high schools and parents do more in the early teen years.
"The University of Iowa won't make a lot of progress among our students until there's more progress in high schools and until parents take the problem more seriously," Nathan said.
The youth survey, prepared by the state, has been conducted every three years since 1965.
Register staff writer Tara Deering contributed to this article.
October 21, 2003
LONDON -- The world’s No 2 spirits group, Allied Domecq Plc, said on Tuesday tough trading in continental Europe was holding back sales growth, hitting its shares despite a forecast-beating rise in annual profit.
“The European economies are difficult... We don’t see any light at the end of the tunnel,” chief executive Philip Bowman said. Shares in the maker of Malibu Coconut Rum, Beefeater Gin and Stolichnaya Vodka, were nearly four per cent lower at 385-3/4 pence, the biggest fall on the FTSE-100 index of leading UK companies. Consumer goods firms across the world are battling sluggish economies and a drop in spending by shoppers, particularly in continental Europe. Food giant Unilever cut its sales target on Monday for the second time in four months.
Allied’s profit before tax, goodwill and exceptional items rose three per cent to 495 million pounds ($830 million) in the year to August 31 as strong growth in the United States offset higher pension costs, a weak dollar and destocking in Spain. The annual dividend rose eight per cent to 14 pence per share.
The consensus forecast among 18 analysts polled by Reuters Research was for an underlying profit of 485 million pounds.
Despite difficult trading in continental Europe, Allied said it remained on course to meet analysts’ consensus forecast for an underlying profit of about 523 million pounds for 2004.
“Early indications are that the 2004 financial year has started well and we are on track to meet current expectations,” Bowman said in a telephone interview. But analysts said a slowdown in volume growth in spirits and wine, excluding acquisitions made during the year, to one per cent from four per cent at the half year stage was worrying.
“Growth in the second half has slowed considerably in turnover terms and I think people are concerned about what that says about future growth,” said Nigel Davies, an analyst at JP Morgan with an “underweight” rating on Allied’s shares. Analysts at Dresdner Kleinwort Wasserstein put their “add” investment recommendation under review, while Stuart Price at Panmure kept a “neutral” rating and advised clients to take profits on the recent rally in Allied’s shares. Allied, which also owns Dunkin’ Donuts and the Baskin-Robbins ice cream chains, shocked investors in February when it said profits would be flat in the year to August 31.
However, the firm’s shares bounced back from a March low of 256-3/4P, Helped by speculation it could become a takeover target as spirits groups battle to catch up market leader Diageo and look for cost-savings to boost modest sales growth.
5. Diageo Lifts its Glass to Better Times
This is London from the Evening Standard
23 October 2003
LONDON -- BETTER times could be round the corner, according to upbeat Diageo chief executive Paul Walsh.
He said the group, which includes Johnnie Walker whisky and Guinness beer, is on track to achieve 'superior performance' as it gains market share even in difficult economies such as Latin America.
Walsh also told Diageo's annual meeting in London on Wednesday that he sees 'signs of improvement' in some markets - particularly the US - lifting the shares 1p to 684p.
Diageo is the latest world-class British company to make most of its money in the US. Despite challenging times in many countries, the firm has shown 'its ability to generate growth', said Walsh.
Three directors including Walsh and Diageo chairman Lord Blyth were re-elected. The National Association of Pension Funds gave the firm's corporate governance policies a clean bill of health.
By Christopher Lawton, Staff Reporter – The Wall Street Journal
Anheuser-Busch Cos., the country's largest brewer, reported a 6.8% increase in third-quarter net income, partly as a result of the continued popularity of its low-carbohydrate beer , Michelob Ultra.
The company reported net income of $664.3 million, or 80 cents a share, compared with $622 million, or 71 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Those results matched analysts' expectations. Anheuser-Busch, based in St. Louis, reaffirmed its goal of 12% to 13% per-share earnings growth for the full year.
Revenue increased 4.7% to $3.88 billion from $3.71 billion in the year-earlier period. The brewery increased its market share during the quarter to 50.1% from 48.9% a year earlier.
Anheuser-Busch's gains came at a time when U.S. domestic beer sales are estimated to be down 1.7% year-to-date through Aug. 31, according to the Beer Institute, a Washington, D.C., trade group.
"This company has put up another solid quarter with improving volume trends in a difficult environment," said Sandy Sanders, an analyst for Evergreen Investments, which owns two million shares of the brewer's stock. "Anheuser-Busch has used its competitive muscle to outgrow the competitors in pricing, volume and marketing."
Anheuser-Busch said it will continue to focus on volume growth and strategic price increases to maximize its profits. In October, the brewery bumped up prices in markets that represent nearly 40% of its domestic volume. Revenue per barrel grew 3.5% from the third quarter last year, a trend the company attributed to consumers trading up to the more-expensive, low-carbohydrate Ultra.
"We continue to see share growth by Michelob Ultra," said W. Randolph Baker, chief financial officer for Anheuser-Busch, during a conference call with Wall Street analysts. He added earlier in the call that Ultra's sales have affected Bud Light sales. "Despite the negative impact on the Bud family, the net overall impact of Michelob Ultra for Anheuser-Busch has been very positive."
The maker of Budweiser and Bud Light said it shipped 27.5 million barrels to wholesalers nationwide during the quarter, up 0.7% from a year earlier. World-wide beer volume rose 1.5% to 29.8 million barrels.
In 4 p.m. New York Stock Exchange composite trading, Anheuser-Busch shares rose 30 cents to $49.50.