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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 29, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas NEW BRAUNFELS TUESDAY April 29 2003 7 v 12 pages in 2sections HERALDZEITUNG Vol 152 No 142 Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852 50 cents 1 nt 1 City layoffs effective Thursday police chief PLANNING 1 code enforcement officer municipal court derk PUBUC WORKS 2 light equipment operators LIBRARY 1 library secretary 4 library aides 1 library iiuuiauun position r f PARKS 1 temporary labor position 1 aide 1 assistant manager 1 park ranger 2 labor positions and 1 parttime trails worker BY DYLAN JIMENEZ Staff Writer Thirteen city employees will lose their jobs Thursday in a bud get cutting decision that would save the city of New Braunfels in the fiscal year that begins July 1 New Braunfels City Council voted unanimously Monday to eliminate a total of 28 city staff positions including 15 slots that are currently vacant Twelve of the positions are fulltime jobs Though the staff cuts are strate gic they only solve part of citys budget woes City Manager Chuck Pinto assured council more tough deci sions lay ahead Before voting council members asked for points of clarification on the matter and were relative ly quiet except for a few almost somber words District 6 Councilman Ken Va lentine urged council members and staff to continue to explore ways to increase revenue such as fees The city needs to main tain the core of services he said See CITY PINTO Burned by bad luck Canyon Lake Fire Department Shift Captain Rick Hazel above mans the pumper truck while Kyle Powell right and members of his department and the Spring Branch Fire Department fight a house fire at 730 Hillcrest Forest near Canyon Lake Sunday morning The house was destroyed in the blaze Separate fires leave 2 families homeless DAVID BY RON MALONEY Staff Writer A pair of apparently acci dental fires left New Braun fels and Canyon Lake resi dents homeless Sunday Canyon Lake and Spring Branch firefighters fought a fire that heavily damaged a Hillcrest Forest home at about 10 Sunday Canyon Lake firefighters arrived at the scene with flames visible from the car port area beneath the two story home owned by the Ryan Dunbar family New Braunfels Fire Mar shal Darren Brinkkoeter assisted in the firefighting effort The fire had traveled up through the walls into an upstairs bath and the attic Brinkkoeter said Canyon Lake firefighters attacked he said In spite of heavy smoke and flames firemen went into the home High winds pushed the fire from one end to the oth Brinkkoeter said The firemen were hampered by the buildings Comal County Assistant Fire Marshal Bill Anz said decks and construction addi tions hampered firefighting It was really Anz See HOUSE Early voting ends today Early voting in the New Braunfels munic ipal election and the Comal Independent School District election ends today Residents can cast ballots for both elec tions from 9 to 2 today in Room 104 of the Comal County Courthouse on Main Plaza The elections are Saturday with polls opening at 7 and closing at 7 In the New Braunfels election Gale OUara Pospisil is challenging Incumbent District 3 council member Debbie Flume Valerie Hull opposes District 4 council member Robert Kendrick Three propositions are also on the ballot In CISD District 5 which represents Spring Branch four candidates are seeking to replace Derald LaRue who chose not to seek reelection They arc Rose Cervin Lee Iredale John Zimmerman and writein candidate Randy Shelton In District 7 which encompasses Gar den Ridge and Solms incumbent Randy Pawelek is being challenged by Bill Swint andLes Sutton NBISD trustees begin prioritizing budgetary needs TOWN HALL MEETING Now Braunfels Mayor Adam Cork will host a town hall meeting at 6 Wednesday in Conference Room A of the Municipal Building 424 S BULVEROE ELECTION Early voting ends today at city hall located In the Bui verde Marketplace at FM 1863 and 281 Hours are 8 to 5 Four candidates are seeking 2 at large seals on the Bulverde City Council Incum bent Charlie Baetz Elliott Franklin Cindy Cross and Sarah Stevick BY SEAN BOWUN Staff Writer New Braunfels Indepen dent School District trustees began prioritizing expendi tures Monday night as they reviewed ways to overcome an expected million bud get shortfall School district spokesper son Stephanie Ferguson said the district expects to lose almost million in state funding for next school year Although increased property valuations would cover part of those lost funds the dis trict is still facing a deficit We were trying to show the board we were starting off in nearly a halfamillion dol lar deficit at Superintendent Ron Reaves said That deficit is mainly caused by reduced interest income the inception and creation of the New Braun fels High Schools Ninth Grade Academy program plus a fuel storage leak detec tion system thats a mandat ed requirement Ferguson said To cover the deficit staff members searched through the budget to find possible cuts Suggestions were made to cut from supplies travel costs and salaries by realigning a few positions and taking advantage of some staff attrition not replacing some retirees or employees who resign But Reaves was adamant about ensuring classroom See NBISD INSIDE TV Key Code 76 Bracken fire chief understands response decision BY RON MALONEY Staff Writer BRACKEN Bracken Volunteer Fire Department Chief Donald Zipp said Mon day he can understand the pressures that have forced New Braunfels Fire Chief John Herber to cut its initial fire response outside the New Braunfels city limits Thafs because they are the same pressures county fire departments have faced for years Zipp also said his depart ment would do what it could to help the NBFD just as the city has done for years for the BVFD Weve never had a prob lem with New Zipp said Monday On Friday Herber an nounced that his department would be reducing its initial fire response outside New Braunfels to six men on one engine and one tanker Thafs a reduction from the 14 men three trucks an am bulance and command vehi cle now sent to county fires The move could delay inte rior attack sending fire fighters into a burning build ing because federal safety standards require that a crew of 14 be on hand to support sending firefighters inside a burning structure The standard is one that volunteer firefighters in unin corporated areas of Comal and Guadalupe counties of ten turn their backs on Manpower issues have long forced volunteer departments follow a two plus two sce nario where two firefighters go inside to do a sweep for victims while two support them from outside ready to try to rescue them if some thing goes wrong Herber said the city would look to the county and to vol unteer fire departments for mutual aid help in outlying areas and where jurisdictions overlap I think this response is more typical of the fire re sponse in unincorporated Herber said Id like to do more I just dont have the luxury any Bracken which depends on volunteers revenues from Rural Fire Protection District 3s three cents per prop erty tax rate and its annual spring and fall fundraisers sold its substation in 2001 He hasnt contacted me yet but I was fixing to talk to him and get the whole Zipp said of Herber Basi cally theyre cutting their re sponse Its definitely going to hinder firefighting its going to hurt manpower Zipp said The coverage areas of the NBFD and BVFD overlap in parts of Solms and up on FM 1863 west of New Braunfels a long haul for Bracken from its station on FM 3009 just up the road from the Garden Ridge Municipal Complex For us I guess especially in the past the response weve got when we called for help was an engine or a Zipp said He said he hoped like in the past and like in his cur rent relationship with Schertz where former New Braunfels Fire Marshal Elroy Friesen hahn is now fire chief the two departments would be able to get the firefighting job done by working together We dont know how it will come until it all gets Zipp said Weve always known we would have to call for more help when we knew we had a big fire Were willing to do whatever we nead to whatever we can supply to help them
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