Friday, January 3, 2003

New Braunfels Herald Zeitung

Location: New Braunfels, Texas

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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - January 3, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas NEW BRAUNFELS FRIDAY January 3 2003 j J w 10 pages in 2 sections HERALDZEITUNG Vol 153 No 45 Serving New Braunfels and Coma County since 1852 50 cents Ethics complaint targets city council member BY MICHAEL GARY Staff Writer The New Braunfels Ethics Commission might convene soon to consider a complaint filed against District 3 Coun cilwoman Debbie Flume after she voted to postpone council action on flood recovery maps in late October James N Patrick a former ethics commission member who resigned before being appointed to the Infrastruc Corp 4B Board filed a complaint Dec 2 charging that Flume violated city ordi nance by voting in the matter despite a conflict of interest His complaint concedes while no direct harm was done to the process one must FLUME consider the appearance of improprieties and the under mining of the publics Flume did not participate in discussion on the citys adoption of flood recovery maps approved by the Fed eral Emergency Manage ment Agency but voted to postpone the matter She also abstained from the vote to adopt the maps The city would use the maps to regu late building permits in flood plains and flood ways along the Guadalupe River Flume signed an affidavit July 22 that stated she has a substantial interest in a firm owned by her husband Michael Flume She checked boxes that said funds received from the business entity exceed 10 percent of income for the previous year real property is involved and she has an equitable or legal ownership with a fair mar ket value of at least and a relative has a sub stantial interest in the busi ness entity or property that would be affected by a deci sion of the public body of which I am a The Flumes had obtained a building permit and were about twothirds of the way complete on building a home at 212 Rio Drive when the structure washed away in July The Flumes began rebuilding as they already had a building permit from the city Barn tire might m Fire marshal Boys played in shed before it burned down BRINKKOETER BY RON MALONEY Staff Writer The fire that destroyed a centuryold shed Wednes day afternoon is believed to have been caused by boys playing with fire works New Braun f e 1 s Fire Mar shal Darren Brink koeter said f i r e fight e r s were dispatched to the 500 block of West Klein Road just after 4 for a reported structure fire They arrived to find the 900 sq ft structure engulfed in flames It took about five min utes to get on scene when they got the Brinkkoeter said It was fully involved when they Firefighters had to pro tect a new home being built about 75 feet away from blowing hot embers The shed was used to store hay Brinkkoeter said Thank goodness there were no animals or any thing else in there It took about 20 minutes to con trol We stayed there for about three hours to make sure the fire was fully Brinkkoeter said Witnesses told firefight ers that three boys ages 11 13 and 15 had been shooting fireworks in the area There were several wit nesses These young men had been popping fire works all afternoon They were seen leaving the area just before the barn was seen on Brinkkoeter said They were playing with fireworks in the building and accidentally caught it on The boys live in the nearby Ranch Estates sub division Brinkkoeter said All three have been interviewed and the investigation is continu ing The fire marshal was uncertain what charges might be brought but they range from criminal tres pass or criminal mischief to violation of the citys fireworks ordinance and of state fireworks laws K JESSIE Left New Braunfels Fire Departments Lt Bud Cessna left supervises a crew from dif ferent fire stations as they work to put out what is left of a small barn that caught fire late Wednesday afternoon off Klein Road Above New Braunfels firefighter Chad Holladay uses the force of the water to work through the smoldering hay late Wednesday afternoon after the primary fire on a bam is put out City Attorney Charles Zech contracted with San Antonio attorney Mayo Galindo to represent the Ethics Com mission Galindo said no firm date has been set for the hearing which likely would be conducted in executive ses sion after public notice is giv en Mayor Adam Cork said he advised Patrick not to file the complaint I think he knew what my See EAA rep pushes for more efficiency BY TONY CANTU Staff Writer In a New Years resolution of sorts local Edwards Aquifer Authority represen t a t i v e Cher y1 G i 1 p i n vowed to push for more deci sive rules on under ground storage tanks and abandoned wells Gilpin was elected in November to represent Dis trict 8 on the Edwards Aquifer Authority EAA board She was sworn in Dec 10 2002 Gilpin suggested the aquifer should cut bureau cracy by working closely with city and county government agencies that also oversee water issues EAA has been given a real broad problem to deal with but its the whole system with several layers of gov she said Toward the end of better aquifer efficiency Gilpin forged a dialogue with Peter Ward of the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the Univer sity of Texas at Austin Ward authored the book Colonias and Public Policy in Texas and Gilpin likened the issue of colonias sub standard housing built around maquiladora facto ries along the Mexican bor der to that of water In Texas groundwater issues are much like the colo nia issues Gilpin said quot ing a passage from the tome categorizing both issues as relegated to a public policy See GILPIN One dead five injured in wreck south of Bulverde FROM STAFF REPORTS SAN ANTONIO A 27 yearold San Antonio woman died Thursday morning in a collision on 281 south of Bulverde Elizabeth C Rowe was pronounced dead at the scene of the acci dent which occurred at the Borgfeld Drive intersection about threefourths of a mile south of the county line Bexar County Sheriffs Deputy William K Lohrke reported that the accident occurred when Rowe driving a 2000 Saturn fourdoor pulled into southbound 281 in front of a 2000 Dodge Neon fourdoor driven by Estelle S Anderson 47 of Spring Branch Andersons car struck the Rowe vehicle in the drivers side door Lohrke reported Rowes three sons ages 8 6 and 2 Anderson and a 3 yearold girl in her car were all taken to University Hos pital An official at the hospital said all were in stable condi tion late Thursday afternoon No one was cited in the accident INSIDE Key Code 76 a 1 City to start yard waste recycling program SPECIAL TO THE HERALDZEITUNG New Braunfels residents soon will be able to leave their yard waste at the curb to be recycled The city will launch a new weekly curbside greenwaste recycling program this month Green waste is made up of grass clippings brush tree trimmings and other yard debris Under the program resi dents will be able to place their green waste at the curb on their normal recycling col lection day and city garbage crews will collect the waste and recycle Assistant City Manager Don Ferguson said Tree trimmings and brush must be bundled and no longer than four feet in length while all leaves plant materials and grass clippings must be in biodegradable paper bags weighing no more than 50 pounds The program is designed to divert the citys collected green waste from the Comal County Landfill so it can be processed at the Comal County Rural Recycling Cen ter It would then be returned at no cost to residents in the form of compost or mulch The green waste program is available only to those res idences currently on the city recycling service The nonoptional monthly fee for the program is which will be added to utility bills beginning this month Estimates show green waste represents as much as 30 percent of the waste stream in New Ferguson said Removing this one type of material from the loads headed to the land fill is a relatively simple way to significantly reduce landfill Also green waste can be environmentally helpful instead of harmful so it makes little sense to place it in an expensive landfill See