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A fresh start…

MCI (MCIAV.PK) , the company formerly known as Worldcom which perpetrated a huge fraud on investors, emerged from bankruptcy on Tuesday. The company is now trying to make a fresh start, though it will obviously be a long time before investors regain their trust. Still, there is one hopeful sign buried deep in their SEC filings that the company has begun to see the light, when it comes to its investors: no more personal use of corporate planes. The policy, which was temporarily put in place shortly after Bernie Ebbers & Co. left in July 2002, is now written into the company’s bylaws. Here’s what they write: The old WorldCom experienced substantial costs and abuses in its use of corporate aircraft. This is an area of common problems among many companies. While corporate aircraft are a legitimate expense for business use, they are extremely costly, and they are a persistent temptation for abuse through personal use. Allowing personal use of corporate aircraft by executives may promote operating a larger fleet than necessary, as well as representing a very expensive and inappropriate lifestyle subsidy from shareholders.” Judging by what’s come up in recent proxies, lots of companies still hand over the keys to the corporate jet for weekend golf trips. It shouldn’t take another huge scandal to get board members to put an end to this.