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Below are comments that we received for topics that were raised in the July-August issue.

On charge cards coming to NIH:

This is long overdue. I have been at NIH since 1970 and have found the procurement procedures to be one of its worst features. I could write reams on the many nightmare situations I have experienced in the "black hole" of procurement.

-Peter H. Fishman, NINDS

Charge cards sound great. I'm eager to get one. I often need to order items that are relatively inexpensive but unusual for NIH scientists. These are practically impossible to get in a reasonable time frame under the current system.

-Robert Tycko, NIDDK

On campus parking problems:

My husband and I are both scientists at NIH. We carpool and have two small children at two different daycare facilities. It really irritates me when no spaces are available in front of the NIH preschool [Bldg. 35] when I am trying to drop my child off or pick her up because NIH employees, visitors, repairmen, delivery trucks, or construction workers are parked in spaces allotted for parents of NIH preschoolers. Then, I have difficulty finding a carpool space-even at 8:45 a.m. because general parking permit holders have parked in so many of the carpool spaces. [Carpool lots do not open to general permit parking until 9:30 a.m.] Employees with general permits should be more considerate of those who are carpooling. I realize that the NIH police can only ticket so many lots in a day; however, there are no penalties for repeat offenders. I believe such a penalty should exist, e.g. loss of parking privileges for several months after the tenth ticket in one year.

-Anonymous, NIH

One thing I'd like to know about the parking situation: There are so many carpool spaces on the campus, but I've never seen more than one person get out of or into a car parked in a carpool space-even cars with green stickers. How do these people get green stickers when they are obviously not really carpooling? And why are there so many spaces for them?

-Anonymous, NIH

RNA Symposium

On Oct. 22, 1996, the NIH RNA Interest Group will host the Mid-Atlantic Regional RNA Symposium, featuring talks by researchers from NIH and nearby universities, a poster session, and a keynote address by Tom Blumenthal, Indiana University, on "Operons in the Nematode Genome." Everyone interested in learning more about the RNA-related research going on in labs in the region is invited to attend. Anyone wanting to present a poster on an RNA-related topic must pre-register an abstract by October 1, 1996. There is no fee, but preregistration is essential to ensure that all posters can be accommodated. Information on how to preregister and submit abstracts, final schedule, updates, and more can be found on the RNA Interest Group's Home Page (http://www.nih.gov:80/sigs/rna/).

For additional information, contact one of the organizers: Sue Haynes (phone: 496-0243; e-mail: sh4i@nih.gov), Brenda Peculis (phone: 402-8760; e-mail: brendap@bdg10.niddk.nih.gov), or Sarah Woodson (phone: 405-7956; e-mail: sw74@umail.umd.edu).

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