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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - August 30, 2000, New Braunfels, Texas Page HERALDZEITUNG Wednesday August 30 2000 OPINIONS FORUM LETTERS NKW HERALDZEITUNG New Braunfcls Zcitung was founded 1852 New Braunfels Herald was founded 1890 The two papers merged in 1957 and printed in both German and English until 1958 Doug Toney Editor and Publisher Margaret Edmonson Managing Editor Michael Gary News Editor 830 6259144 OTHER VIEW BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Waco TribuneHerald on electric deregulation around the comer Texans soon will be hot under the collar when they get their electric bills Natural gas prices have doubled and this added expense for utility companies will be passed along to consumers Its not as though electric bills in Texas arent high enough now Texans already pay some of the highest electric bills in America On top of this Texas is about to deregulate its electric power industry Deregulation is supposed to provide consumers with lower electric bills and more choices in a competitive marketplace Thats good California which always strives to be on the bleeding edge of new has deregulated its electricity industry for the same reasons that the Texas deregulation bill was signed into law last year which also were good What was bad however was that deregulation in California has led to little competition electricity shortages and higher electric bills Electricity shortages have forced some California firms to install expensive electricity generation systems to keep their businesses run ning Rolling brownouts have caused utilities to turn off the juice to select ed California residential customers Electric bills in San Diego went up nearly 400 percent since deregulation I Fortunately California stepped first into the deregulation unknown Texas can learn from Californias mistakes Thats what Pat Wood chairman of the Texas Public Utility Commission and state Sen David Sibley RWaco and state Sen Steve Wolens DDallas authors of the deregulation bill say They also say that compared to California Texas has its own power grid has better regulations and will have more competition One would hope Fortunately electricity deregulation in Texas will be phased in gradu ally through 2007 Lawmakers and regulators who must stay attentive to the impact of deregulation will have the opportunity to adjust the restructuring to avoid the mistakes made in California Electricity deregulation is reportedly in place or being considered in 25 states Two major problems loom One comes from demand and the other from supply On the demand side there has been a rapid rise in electricity con sumption Much of that increase has been attributed to the surge in use of the Internet computers and computer accessories Experts expect that use to continue to shoot upward On the supply side new power plants and transmission lines need to be built not just in Texas but across the nation In addition power plants need a reliable supply of cleanburning fuel There is plenty of coal but it causes serious pollution problems There are plenty of natural gas supplies but much of the gas is blocked from drilling Clean alternative energy has yet to be made costeffective plentiful or reliable These problems need to be solved nationwide and particularly here in Texas TODAY IN HISTORY BY THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Today is Wednesday Aug 30 the 243rd day of 2000 There are 123 days left in the year Todays Highlight in History On Aug 30 1862 Union forces were defeated by the Confederates at the Second Battle of Bull Run in Manassas Va On this date In 30 on Aug 30 by some Cleopatra the seventh and most famous queen of ancient Egypt committed suicide LETTERS To THE EDITOR Project Cuddle wants to save babies lives Dear Editor I would like to thank you for giving Baby Hope such coverage in your local paper I am wondering what became of that pre cious little girl I also wonder what might have happened had her mother known of an organization called Project Cuddle It runs a hotline 24 hours toll free to help young mothers in that position Anyone can call for information or just advice on a legal safe alternative to aban doning a baby Please encourage those in our community to look into this nonjudg mental group looking to save babies lives Project Cuddle wants to make sure there are no more abandoned babies out there Look them up on the web or call 888 TOCUDDLE Thanks for keeping us posted on Baby Hopes well being Here is to saving others like her Katsy Joiner Bulverde Enough is enough Preserve rivers beauty Dear Editor Recently there have been numerous arti cles in the paper concerning banning alco hol from the river Residents who live near the action spots and have children are all for it Others say it will hurt our economy and some retailers depend on the sale of alcohol First lets look at New Braunfels and its growing community Both rivers that flow through here are major assets and a comple ment to our town It adds beauty recreation peacefulness and an opportunity to be close to nature I myself am privileged to live on the Guadalupe right before it merges with the Comal and its a small piece of Heaven I do not see the action like others But I have friends who have very lovely homes on the Guadalupe and Comal and when visiting them I have seen fights worse than any bar room brawl open sex defecation loud and uncontrollable behavior Guess what spurs this type of action on Youre right alcohol and drugs There is nothing I enjoy more than having a chilly one and float with friends but enough is enough Lets be a little proactive and protect our children from violence Clean up the river and let the fun of floating down the river be an experience of a lifetime in a positive vein Other cities have done this and the results all have been positive Our city is growing and in a few short years we will be in the center of a major boom with more children friends and families who enjoy the beauty of our rivers So lets not destroy this beauty If you feel the need to be blind stupid and drunk go somewhere else or better yet take a video of your actions and show your fami ly in 10 years this was your old mom and dad Robert A Kelley New Braunfels Its time to take back our rivers Dear Editor For the record I support the ban not only on beer but on any disposable container on our rivers within the city limits Our city council members especially our Honorable Mayor Stoney Williams should not bow to the tube renters or beer sellers such as Mid Tex Oil whose many gas sta tions in our area sell beer The tube renters merely are interested in selling an extra tube for the beer cooler and we know that Mid Tex wants to sell more beer It is time to take back our rivers Putting extra police on the rivers is a strain on tax payers The police have better things to do such as watching for speeders making their presence known to prevent burglaries and car breakins and traffic control on week ends Our rivers are becoming a joke scaring away families who want to spend time here in our restaurants motels bed and break fasts and other tourist attractions We are losing more tourist dollars with the families staying away than we make from the sixhour tourists who bring that trash on our rivers and river front properties and then leave We have brought control to Wurstfest and we need to bring control to our rivers What do you think our beautiful rivers would look like if volunteer divers no longer came to clean the bottom of our rivers that look much worse than the riverbanks We then could rename our rivers Miller Lite River One and Miller Lite River Jerry White New Braunfels Democrats still represent average citizens Dear Editor House Bill 4865 recently was passed by the House of Representatives in Washington This bill would reduce taxes on Social Security for those singles making at least and couples making at least doubt those of us 65 years and older making that much need a tax reduc tion We probably arent having to buy school supplies and clothes for our children nor having to pay college costs for them We probably arent still buying a house We also have part of our health costs covered How many in New Braunfels are making or an hour Maybe some busi ness managers but do their employees Look at our tourist industry a biggie in New Braunfels Do the employees at motels restaurants water sports make that much No Do the clerks and secretaries in our stores the courthouse or most offices make that much No But they do probably have the expenses listed above Look around you Look at all the people who work here in New Braunfels How many of them would benefit from a bill for those making more than or an hour This bill is for the wealthier not most citizens In the Austin American paper July 30 there was a listing of the roll call vote on this bill A few Democrats four voted for this bill but not a single not one Republican voted against it President Clinton said he would veto this bill That tells me something There is a dif ference in the parties The Democrats are still for the average citizen and the Republicans are still for the more wealthy When you listen to the conventions and the candidates they sound much alike I look at what they do How they vote What gets vetoed Im glad we have a Democratic president to veto some of the legislation the majority Republican Congress passes I appreciate what President Clinton has done with domestic and foreign policy and do not condone his mistakes but he is not running for president although you would think he was when you listen to Thea Chessher New Braunfels New Braunfels must act now to lengthen life of landfill BY TERRY FISCHER Special to the HeraldZeitung This letter is in response to the July 23 letter from Luke Speckman to the editor of the HeraldZeitung There is no idea for overcharging for trash pickup Rather the idea is to charge based on usage of the service This is not yet a done deal as the Recycling Committee of New Braunfels is in the process of investigating changes in resi dential garbage collection here All the recommendations will have to go to the City Council for action Presently the committee is looking at households with excessive garbage more than the recommended threecan limit currently in effect The great majority of users do not place near the garbage limit at the curb for pickup The normal users are in effect subsidizing the large garbage generators here in New Braunfels So far no fee increase has been discussed One of our challenges is to determine what is the equivalent of three cans for those folks who place garbage out at the curb in boxes or similar nonstandard contain ers City of New Braunfels residential garbage pickup costs less than private pickup for and in addition it is done twice weekly with recycling pickup I think most people will still want to have the New Braunfels bargain rates and good service As far as the large amounts of waste from people with large yards they should start composting leaves and yard waste The larger parcels of property makes this option easier to accomplish because they can accommodate the compost storage for use in later seasons The loss of nutri ents from grass cuttings and leaves must be replaced by commercial fertilizers or some source as diminished growth will result in the trees plants and grass over the years The city can help with low cost shredding and chipping if there is a large quantity of trees to be ground up This service is available with a call to the city but there is a fee to the requester Whether the city hauls the waste off or whether a private contractor hauls it off the capacity of the landfill should be a concern to all When the present landfill reaches capacity a new landfill most like ly will be required or the waste hauled to a distant existing landfill Hauling to the distant landfill most likely will cost more Keep in mind that the landfill off Farm toMarket Road 1102 is no longer a city or countyowned operation and as such waste from areas other than New Braunfels and Comal County is going into the site With the growth of the local area the time is coming when a new location will be sought How palatable will the location be to folks in Comal County There will be a huge cost in the future that will have to be paid We should not think we wont be around to see this but act today to extend the land fill life by reducing waste and recycling The idea of maintenance and replace ment cost of garbage trucks being of no concern to the customer is a gross over simplification Who really thinks that the service provider will not pass along costs to the customer It is not likely the com pany will reduce its profits when tipping fees increase their trucks need replace ment or fuel costs escalate as they have done recently The problem of dumpster stuffing would seem to be a problem where secu rity is lax or nonexistent Isnt it easier to just put the trash on the curb than haul it to someones dumpster Likely the source of the dumped waste is a person who does not have any means of waste dispos al The New Braunfels City Council has addressed the littering problem with greatly increased fines for littering the minimum fine is and the maximum now is Who would take the chance of being caught littering much less dumping a whole load of trash in New Braunfels The recycling meetings are usually on the third Tuesday of the month and are posted on the city bulletin board in the lobby of City Hall I invite Mr Speckman and other interested parties to come to the meetings and give their input and ideas on recycling and garbage collection Terry Fischer is chairman of the recy cling committee for New
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