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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - July 10, 1997, New Braunfels, Texas THURSDAY I I iiriors force second final tonight See Page 1B 50 CENTS unfels 09 i o I 1 Fl PA80 TX 7V 90 IUUJI 14 pages in two sections Thursday July Serving Comal County and surrounding areas for more than 145 years Home of Nancy HmrtfM Vol 145 No 171 Inside Stammlisch Birthday wishes from the HeraldZettung The New Braunfeb Herald Zeitung extends birthday wishes to Fadra Manning Rhonda Bar rett Nancy Hartfiel Gladys Turner Marilyn Hartmann Alfredo Morales 65 years and Jennifer Marie Castilleja 8 To have a birthday or anniver sary listed here call 6259144 Pollen Count Mold Grass Pigweed 26 Ragweed Pofen measured in parts per cubic meter ol air Information provided by Dr Frank Hampel River Information Comal cubic feet per sec ond up 1 from Wednesday Edwards Aquifer Panther Canyon Well feet above sea level up 01 from Wednesday Canyon Dam discharge cfs Canyon Lake inflow cfs Canyon Lake level feet above sea level Above conservation New Braunfels Utilities NBU reports pumping million gallons of surface water Wednesday and millloagallons of well water were used Sunny skies highs in 90s expected The summer sky should be mostly sunny this after noon with temperatures ris ing to a high temperature in the mid 90s A south wind of 10 to 15 mph should help make outdoor conditions more bearable until we reach an overnight low in the mid 70s If you like todays weather youre in luck If you dont like todays weather you might consider leaving town for a few days because tomorrows forecast looks a lot like todays Get immunizations before school rush The time to immunize your school and preschool children is now The last two weeks before the beginning of a school year is a busy time for the coun ty health department so get a jump start For more infor mation call the county health department at 620 5595 Today last day for voter registration Residents wanting to vote on Aug 9 for the constitu tional amendment election or the New Braunfels Inde pendent School District board of trustees election have until 5 Thursday to register to vote To regis ter call or visit the Comal County Tax Office Take care when heat Is on Summer heat is danger ous for small children and pets Make sure younger children have plenty to drink when they are cut in the heat make sure they are well protected When leaving your house for a while and make sure your pets have plenty to drink and shade to keep cool Never leave pets in a car without the air conditioner running Crash kills driver j w New Braunfels man dies after train accident By DAVID DEKUNDER Staff Writer A New Braunfels man died Wednes day morning after the dump truck he was driving was struck by a Union Pacif ic freight train at a private company crossing on Wald Road Thomas Garza 28 of New Braun fels was pronounced dead at Wednesday after he was transferred to Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio Department of Public Safety Trooper Vaughn Pack said Garza was driving his dump truck across the tracks when it was struck by the northbound freight train Pack said Garza apparently tried to beat the train The driver disregarded the stop sign at the Pack said The train struck the passenger side of the truck between the bed of the truck and the cab near the trucks gas tank The cab of the truck was crushed and the train traveled about feet before it stopped Pack said An officer at the scene said the tank exploded throwing flames onto the side of the train Train personnel had to be evacuated from the train From what I understand they saw a fireball when he Garza was Pack said Emergency crews from the New Braunfels Fire Department used the jaws of life to remove Garza from the truck They used a crane to remove the dump truck from the traahau looking at a few things regarding trfe accident HeraldZeitung photos by Michael Darnall Above Texas Department of Public Safety officer Scott Haag comforts Juliana Aguirre the girlfriend of driver Thomas Garza Jr Friend Sandy Shane comforts Aguirre Garza was pinned in the vehicle for nearly an hour before he was freed by the use of a crane and the jaws of life At left one of Thomas Garzas cowork ers examines the wreckage after Garza was airlifted to Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio The train pushed the truck nearly one half a mile before stopping Water rate hikes may be passed on to customers Council utility mull increase in NBU returns to city r By CHRIS CREWS Staff Writer Water rates and the amount of money to be contributed to the citys general fund were the pri mary topics discussed Wednesday evening at a special session of the New Braunfels Utilities Board of Trustees The meeting was convened to discuss the utilitys budget for the 199798 fiscal year and the five year financial prospectus The cost of water is on the said JeffThompson assistant general manager for administra tion and finance for NBU The cost increase primarily dri ven by proposed increases in raw water prices by GuadalupeBlanco River Authority will eventually have to be passed on to residential and business customers Thompson said Information provided by NBU indicated that the utility spent on water in 199596 but the projected cost for 199798 is an increase of more than 700 percent In other business the board dis cussed the amount of money the cityowned utility contributes to the citys general operating fund Board members said the city is asking for about 6 percent of NBUs gross revenue a number they said approached the national average for cityowned utilities A proposal presented to the board would increase the amount NBU returns to the city by mil lion over a fiveyear period We need to do this to keep the utility vital and said NBU President Guadalupe Castil lo New Braunfels Mayor Jan Ken nady said she was pleased with the proposal Im pleased initially it looks said Kennady who as mayoris an ex officio member of the NBU board While the increase in NBUs financial contribution to the city enjoys broad support on the board support was not unanimous I dont care what the national average board member Eugene Mornhinweg said of the proposal which would increase the transfer from NBU coffers to the city by about 1 million each year Those people dont live in New Braun The board did not set a date to vote on a final budget for 199798 City WORD mull safe tubing accord Bush will push tax rollback measure AUSTtN AP Gov George W Bush is planning a road trip before the Aug 9 election to ask voters to approve a bil lion plan for rolling back local school property taxes Bush who lost twodiirds of his billion tax relief plan in the Legislature wants to make sure Texans know about the bal lot measure and ratify it Im worried about the governor said Wednesday Im confident that with a reasonable turnout it will pass Very few people should be against The 1 billion proposal is what remains after the Legislature spent 140 days chewing over Bushs initial tax rollback idea Bush recommended spending a billion budget surplus and replacing about billion in local property raxes with new state levies The billion tax cut is a proposed amendment to the Texas Constitution If its ratified by voters minimum homestead exemptions will be raised from to reducing school property taxes by an average of 140 a year By DAVID DEKUNDER Staff Writer Representatives for the city of New Braunfels and Comal County Water Oriented Recreation Dis trict are hard at work hammering out an interlocal agreement con cerning tubing regulations on the Guadalupe River City Attorney Jacqueline Cul lom Murphy said she will meet with representatives from WORD and river outfitters Tuesday Murphy said she wrote a draft of the agreement and would share it with the representatives at the meeting The main goal is a uniform educational message regarding any dangers in the Mur phy said The river is a natural habitat and sometimes people are uneducated about the hidden dan The desire for an interlocal agreement between the city and WORD which would set up a uni form standard of regulations with in the city limits and in the county results from a lawsuit between the city and the parents of a woman who drowned in the Guadalupe River while tubing five years ago Under the terms of a compro mise settlement with the parents the city council appointed a River Safety Commission in January The job of the commission was to look at the possibility of imple menting a river safety ordinance and to establish standards and reg ulations for recreational users on the river In April the commission reject ed the idea of an ordinance because of enforcement problems But commission members agreed that uniform safety measures signs and educational safety materials were needed Another recommendation was to work out an interlocal agree ment between the city and WORD Council approved the recom mendations this spring and the city Turn to Tubing Page 2A Figures show McKenna Memorial in good financial health By CHRIS CREWS Staff Writer If McKenna Memorial Hospital had a checkup on its financial wellbeing it would be judged to be in robust health According to information obtained by the HeraldZeitung from the Texas Department of Health total net Part ofa series revenue was million more than expenses at the New Braunfels hospi tal in 1995 Guadalupe Valley Hospi tal in Seguin broke even during be same period while the difference at Central Texas Medical Center in San Marcos was a negative million Financial figures for 1996 were not Former McKenna board president Elliot attributed the financial health of the hospital to its private notforprofit management system Private management out performs public management in every circum Knox said Wayne Sorensen chairman of the department of health administration at Southwest Texas Sjtate University complimented McKenna on its man agement and strong financial situation but added there are accounting factors such as depreciation and bad debt that can contribute to the apparent financial status ofa hospital There are accounting factors that can contribute to a hospitals bottom Sorensen said But this doesnt mean they can continue to lose money indefinitely they have to right the ship Sorensen added that there are impor tant differences in the way the New Braunfels Seguin and San Marcos hos pitals are managed A citycounty operated hospital such as Guadalupe Valley Hospital in McKenna Memori Hospit Guada Valley Hospital Central Texas Medical Center ER visits Inpatient Surgeries Source Texas Department of Health 1995 Hospital Survey Seguin has certain advantages and dis advantages when compared to McKennnas private management A citycounty system allows the community to directly support the hos pital with a tax Sorensen said This creates stability and provides greater continuity for the On the negative side Sorensen said the citycounty system is subject to political disagreements A hospital administrator in a city county system must compete for runds with the police chief and fire chief Sometimes it comes down to do we buy new police cars or do we hire a Turn to McKenna Page 2A CotnaMSDapproves student IDs for Canyon HighPage 54 new TV ratings OJTd Page 3A
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