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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, March 25, 2003

Business briefs

Advertiser Staff

HealthSouth open as usual

HealthSouth Corp. plans to continue operating its Hawai'i rehabilitation and surgical centers despite a major scandal that halted trading in the company's stock yesterday for the fourth straight session.

HealthSouth operates 11 rehabilitation or surgical centers in Hawai'i.

"All of our facilities are operating in an uninterrupted manner. ... We would tell ... (patients) to be sure to come in and have their treatment," company spokesman Ernie Knewitz said yesterday.

No plans have been announced to close any HealthSouth facility, Knewitz said.

Trading in HealthSouth was suspended as the rehabilitation giant negotiated over whether shares would be dropped from the New York Stock Exchange.

Shares in HealthSouth have not traded since last Tuesday. Before the markets opened Wednesday, the Securities and Exchange Commission filed civil charges accusing the company of overstating earnings by at least $1.4 billion.

Gas prices at record high

The average price of a gallon of gasoline in Hawai'i set a record high of $2.06 Saturday, then remained at that level yesterday, according to a survey of gas stations by AAA Auto Club.

The price of regular at the pump is up an average of nearly 18 cents a gallon statewide in the past month, in part because of concerns about the availability of Middle Eastern and Nigerian oil.

Prices in Honolulu and Wailuku, Maui, hit record highs of $1.974 and $2.292, respectively.

Pro Bowl talks delayed by war

State negotiations to land a better deal for the rights to host the NFL's Pro Bowl have been delayed for at least several weeks as local tourism officials assess the effect of war on tourism.

The Hawai'i Tourism Authority originally planned to discuss the issue with the NFL during an owners' meeting this week.

"We need to get a better idea of what's going to happen as the war progresses before we sit down with the NFL," said Rex Johnson of the Hawai'i Tourism Authority.