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A study on emergency responses to 911 callers found that a small group of “super users” is blitzing the system with serial requests for transports that often aren’t paid for.

One individual in the study performed by MedicWest and American Medical Response required ambulance services 57 times in six months. Another was transported 22 times in 30 days.

The study, presented Wednesday to the Medical Advisory Board of the Southern Nevada Health District, identified 277 patients who were transported more than 2,100 times to emergency rooms over a six-month period.

The ambulance charges during that period topped $1.8 million, and more than half of the money was never paid.

MONDAY

LAWYERS: FREE O.J.

In a rare hearing before the Nevada Supreme Court on Monday, lawyers for O.J. Simpson and a co-defendant argued for their clients’ freedom while they appeal convictions on armed robbery and kidnapping charges.

The lawyers used the opportunity to try to convince three high court justices that Simpson and Clarence “C.J.” Stewart should not be imprisoned because their convictions came after a trial fraught with legal errors.

TUESDAY

A FAMILY ATTRACTION

Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman and former U.S. Sen. Richard Bryan, dressed as mobsters, broke through a fake brick wall with a bat and crowbar to signify the start of renovations at the Las Vegas Museum of Organized Crime and Law Enforcement, better known as the Mob Museum.

The museum, expected to open downtown in early 2011, aims to show the mob’s role in Las Vegas history as well as law enforcement’s ultimately successful push against the gangsters.

WEDNESDAY

BURNING BUDGET ISSUE

Las Vegas firefighters gave up a cost-of-living increase for the current budget year in their new, two-year contract.

The contract leaves in place annual step raises, which average 5 percent. It also obligates the city to pay more toward employees’ health care and retirement contributions.

THURSDAY

PIPELINE VOTE FLOATED

Southern Nevada Water Authority chief Pat Mulroy said she will ask her board for an “up-or-down vote” on plans to pipe groundwater to Las Vegas from across rural eastern Nevada.

The move comes in response to a recent surge in opposition to the multibillion-dollar pipeline, she said.

Authority board members will vote Aug. 20 on whether the agency should continue prep work on the project, which could supply water for almost 270,000 homes.

FRIDAY

TARKANIAN ENTERS RACE

Las Vegas real estate professional and former University of Nevada, Las Vegas basketball player Danny Tarkanian announced plans to run against Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in 2010.

Tarkanian’s parents are former UNLV coaching legend Jerry Tarkanian and Las Vegas City Councilwoman Lois Tarkanian.

The Republican’s most recent victory in the public square was in a libel lawsuit against his 2004 political rival, state Sen. Mike Schneider, D-Las Vegas.

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