New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 6, 2011, New Braunfels, Texas
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WEDNESDAY, APRIL 6, 2011Zeitung
Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852. 500
NCAA WOMEN’S BASKETBALL CHAMPIONSHIPWHO NEEDS LUCK? AGGIES CHAMPS
Comal ISD cuts now at$ll.lM
District applying $5.8M of fund balance to next year’s budget
By Will Wright
The present and the near future were topics of discussion for Comal Independent School District’s board of trustees Tuesday in a workshop session at the CISD Support Services Building.
The meeting largely centered on the future use of the district’s $57.1 million fund balance, which will partially be applied to maintenance and operations over the next several years. Superintendent Marc Walker’s revised list of budget cuts now totals $11.1 million, and after applying $5.8 million of fund balance for next year, the district is still short.
In a review of bills now before the Legislature, Walker explained Comal ISD could
See COMAL ISD, Page 5
NBISD could cut positions on Thursday
By Will Wright
For the second time in nearly three weeks, the upcoming budget will take center stage at a special meeting of the New Braunfels Independent School District board of trustees, which begins at 7 p.m. Thursday at the NBISD Education Center Board Room, 430W. Mill St.
The board will take action on terminating probationary contract employees, consider
See NBISD, Page 5
In last 2 years, city has spent $2.5M on consultants
THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT
The U.S. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is a law ensuring public access to U.S. government records. FOIA carries a presumption of disclosure; the burden is on the government — not the public — to substantiate why information may not be released. Upon written request agencies of the United States government are required to disclose those records, unless they can be lawfully withheld from disclosure under one of nine specific exemptions in the FOIA. This right of access is ultimately enforceable in federal court
SOURCE: The National Security Archive
By Greg Bowen
On March 3, the Herald-Zeitung submitted a Freedom of Information Act request for copies of all contracts for consultants hired by the City of New Braunfels in the past 24 months.
The result was a waist-high stack of some 50 contracts totaling $2.5 miUion. Among those were 30 contracts for under $25,000 each, totaling $313,000.
Another 19 contracts were issued for $25,000-plus contractual expen-
ditures and totaled $2.19 million.
City Manager Mike Morrison and Chief Financial Officer Debi Korin-chock said all the $25,000-and-up contracts had been granted council approval — and the $313,000 con
tracted for under-$25,000 spending was a reasonable figure.
"The contracts are within the context of programs that the council, whether through budget or other means, has said we want to do,’’
Morrison said. With the efforts that we’ve got going on, no, I don’t find that to be an unusual number at all.”
Korinchock said the city’s audit places total city spending over the past two years at $150 million. “So, you look at ($313,000) against that and it’s a small percentage.”
In the past two years, die city has spent at least $313,000 on contracts that weren’t required to be taken before New Braunfels City Council for specific approval.
See CONSULTANTS, Page 5
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Texas A&M players celebrate with the championship trophy after their 76-70 win over Notre Dame Tuesday night in the women's NCAA college basketball championship game in Indianapolis.
Texas A&M edges Fighting Irish to capture first national crown
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Danielle Adams scored 22 of her 30 points in the second half and Texas A&M beat Notre Dame 76-70 on Tuesday to win its first national championship.
Texas A&M (33-5) built an early 13-point lead with its aggressive defense, fell behind by seven in the sec
ond half, then rallied by pounding the ball inside to the 6-foot-1 Adams, who was 9-for-ll shooting in the final 20 minutes.
lyra White added 18 points for the Aggies, including a huge 3-pointer as the shot clock buzzer
See AGGIES, Page 5
Fighting Irish 70
► TEXAS LEGISLATIVE ROUNDUP
Top lawmaker vows to add to budget
Vol. 158, No. 125 12 pages, 1 section
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The Associated Press
AUSTIN — A top Republican leader said Tuesday that Texans are “waking up” to the cuts made by the Texas House, and he vows to add more revenue to the bare-bones proposal.
Rep. Jim Pitts, who authored the budget bill in the House, said it could grow by as much as $5 billion before the legislative session ends in May. He said accounting tricks such as deferring payments and speeding up revenue collections were among the methods lawmakers would use to get more money.
Pitts made the comments
two days after the House passed a bill that makes deep cuts in education, elderly care, college grants and other programs. “I think the people are waking up," Pitts said. “Yes we made cuts in their public schools, we made cuts in their nursing homes, we made cuts in hospitals.” Pitts said education spending would go down even after the restorations but told reporters that the House could “make the bill better.”
See BUDGET, Page 5