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Stark Apologizes To Sullivan Over Racial Remark

August 8, 1990

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Rep. Pete Stark has apologized to Health and Human Services Secretary Louis Sullivan for calling him a ″disgrace to his race″ last week, according to spokesmen for both men.

Neither Sullivan nor Stark’s office would release the text of the letter of apology delivered Monday night.

″He did apologize,″ Bob Shemermund, a spokesman for Sullivan, said Tuesday.

Stark’s remark last week infuriated Sullivan, the only black member of President Bush’s Cabinet, who called the statement ″incomprehensibly offensive.″

Stark, who said the intended target of his criticism was Bush administration policies he believes harm blacks and the poor, said on the House floor afterward, ″I blew it.″

Sullivan did not take that as an apology.

He did take the letter that way, but did not send a reply, Schmermund said.

In a speech Tuesday, Sullivan said ″he accepted the apology and considered the incident closed,″ Schmermund said.

Perry Plumart, a spokesman for Stark, refused to discuss the contents of the letter.

--- Former S&L Chairman Charged

WASHINGTON (AP) - The former chairman of a failed Texas savings and loan association has been charged with embezzling more than $4 million after purchasing a controlling interest in the thrift in 1985.

Alan Ross Rothery, a California attorney and former chairman of Trinity Valley Savings and Loan Association of Cleveland, Texas, was accused of bank fraud, embezzlement, self-dealing and giving false information to a federal bank examiner.

Each count carries a five-year sentence and a possible $250,000 fine.

The indictment, returned Aug. 2 by a federal grand jury in Beaumont, Texas, was unsealed in court Tuesday.

It accuses Rothery and two California businessman, Errol Coughlan, of Malibu, and John Coughlan Jr., of Long Beach, of participating in a scheme to fraudulently divert loan proceeds.

The Texas thrift was taken over by federal regulators in March 1989 and sold Oct. 6, 1989, to Hibernia National Bank in Texas, regulators said. The loss to the government for insured deposits and speculative loans is expected to reach $33 million, the Justice Department said.

--- Small Fire Put Out In Pentagon

WASHINGTON (AP) - A smoky fire that broke out in a room at the Pentagon was put out Tuesday night with no one being injured, authorities said.

Investigators did not know what caused the fire, and a damage estimate was not available, said Air Force Capt. Sam Grizzle, a Pentagon spokesman.

The fire started about 8 p.m. and was brought under control about 20 minutes later, Grizzle said.

He did not know what type of work is performed in the room.

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