New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 7, 2004, New Braunfels, Texas
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SPORTS RAIN OUT
Thunderstorms wash out baseball, softball games, have been psi
rescheduled for today. Pages 7A
Jackson Hewitt is offering a $10 discount on income tax preparations through April 15. Page 3A
Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852.
Vol. 153 No. 127 16 pages, 2 sections
DEAR ABBY 48 CLASSIFIEDS 88 COMICS 3B CROSSWORD 3B FORUM 4A OBITUARIES 3A SPORTS 7A TV GRIDS 48Mobile home park receives break—again
By Ron Maloney
BULVERDE — The power will not be turned off at Tami-ga Acres.
Attorneys and one of the mobile home park’s owners said Tuesday an agreement was reached that would
ensure an estimated $159,000 in needed septic repairs would be performed.
Comal County Criminal District Attorney Dib Waldrip’s environmental enforcement division in February notified the park’s 52 tenants and its owners, the Tessye Maurer family, that the park would be
closed down in 30 days because of problems that allowed raw sewage to run on the ground.
Over the course of the month, many families and mobile homes were moved out, reducing strain on the park’s sewage systems, but an estimated 200 people in more
than 30 mobile homes still live there.
This past week, Waldrip extended the deadline through Monday while the Maurer family worked to secure funding to guarantee the repairs. Monday afternoon, Waldrip said the Maurers had squandered the time
afforded them by the original deadline and told the family there would be no more extensions.
Tuesday, Waldrip said he’d agree to a short one through Wednesday to help a buyer for the park — and to not further inconvenience its remaining tenants.
“The Maurers did produce $58,000, and they’ve got a total of $59,000 in the registry at the court, and the other $100,000 is hopefully coming through the prospective buy-ers,” Waldrip said. “Their attorneys simply need the opportunity to ensure that See TAMIGA, Page 3A
Another church is profiled in the weekly series.
By Ron Maloney
SAN ANTONIO — Police and FBI agents have run into a stone wall in their renewed investigation into whether Michael DeWalt ever molested his son.
FBI Special Agent Darren Holmes said Tuesday there was nothing new to report in the DeWalt matter.
“Our investigation is ongoing with the New Braunfels Police Department, and that's our status,’’ I lolmes said.
New Braunfels police Lt. Mike Rust said DeWalt was not cooperating with the investigation. DeWalt did not return calls for this story.
“We continue to follow up what leads we have,” Rust said. “The FBI
is actively pursuing this investigation, but the two people they need to talk to — Suzanne and jeremy DeWalt — are not available.”
Suzanne DeWalt alleged in child custody proceedings that Michael DeWalt, a U.S. Navy pilot, sexually abused their son, Jeremy.
A Comal County jury disagreed and awarded custody of the then-
5-year-old to his father. Suzanne DeWalt and her mother, Margaret Keams, allegedly fled with the boy.
Margaret and Ed Kearns have been jailed since fall on charges of hindering the apprehension of a felon and interfering with child custody for allegedly aiding their daughter rather than surrender her son, Jeremy, 6, to his father.
Garden Ridge mayor to visit Austin, Perry
Park rangers help keep river fun, safe
By Leigh Jones
Garden Ridge mayor Jay Feibelman is ready to go to Austin.
He is not running for office, but he does intend to have a chat with the governor.
Garden Ridge is part of a nine-city coalition called the Northeast Partnership that wants to encourage Gov. Rick Perry not to propose any school finance reforms that would negatively impact a city’s ability to generate revenue.
“We are trying to keep the legislature from keeping municipalities from running their cities properly,” Feibelman said.
According to the Texas Municipal League’s Web site, Perry’s proposal to achieve “educational excellence” by creating "real and meaningful” municipal property tax relief indudes a cap on property tax revenue and a limit on residential property appraisals to an increase of no more than 3 percent
Jay Feibelman per year.
Feibelman and the mayors of Cibolo, Converse, Kirby, Live Oak, Schertz, Selma, Universal City and Windcrest are specifically concerned about the proposal to reduce the percentage of the yearly city budget increase from 8 to I percent.
Last year’s Garden Ridge budget was roughly $1 million. Perry’s proposal would allow the city to increase next year's budget only $10,000. Feibelman does not believe that amount would cover increases in health insurance premiums and standard-of-iiving salary increases.
"We need an approximately 8 percent increase in the budget each year to run the city," Feibelman said. “We need to keep up with inflation.”
Tonight, Feibelman will ask council to sign onto the coalition’s resolution that lays out the case against some of the proposed finance reforms.
Coalition chainnan and Converse city mayor Craig Martin sent a letter to Perry requesting a meeting to with all nine mayors. A date has not been set.
Feibelman acknowledged there were a lot of proposals and it was possible none of them would get anywhere with the legislature.
“T here are a lot of issues on the floor that I don’t even understand,” he said. “This resolution is an offensive move.”
Nothing new found in DeWalt investigation, police, FBI said
First-year park ranger Justin Nixon, a Canyon High School senior, can write citations for violations ranging from littering to jumping off bridges to illegal parking.
By Scott Mahon
Although they're the youngest seasonal employees, park rangers are usually the first to spot problems with summer river tourists.
“Park rangers are an extension of the parks department,” said Stacey Laird, parks director. “They serve as law enforcement, and they’re usually the first ones park patrons come face to face with.”
Roger Dolle, park ranger superintendent, and Nathan Pence, river project manager, are responsible for hiring park rangers.
“We look for applicants who are 21 or older, although the minimum age is 18,” Dolle said. “But 18-year-olds have advantages. They’re new to the workforce and they don't have any bad habits, yet. I’ve hired three 18-year-old park rangers in the three years I’ve been here, but if it’s someone I don’t know, I prefer a 21-year-old.” Dolle said most park ranger applicants were college students from Texas State University in San Marcos.
“This year, almost all the applicants are from New Braunfels though,” he said.
Pence said the average age of park rangers this year is 21.
“I think we have only one 18-year-old,” he said.
18, is a senior at Canyon High School and an Eagle Scout.
He is a park ranger for the first time this year.
“It sounded like fun, and I want to be a game warden or marine biologist someday,” he said. “So I thought this would help me.”
Dolle said park ranger applicants must pass a (frug test and a background check.
As city employees, starting pay is $8.32 an hour. “They work weekends and holidays during the river activity season,” he said. “They work from Easter weekend until October, although some leave before October.” Dolle said park rangers were instructed to handle problems in a friendly manner, to issue verbal warnings and to radio the New Braunfels Police Department for serious problems.
“They can write citations for things like littering and illegal parking,” he said. “But we encourage them to give verbal warnings first.”
Although alcohol is allowed on the rivers and in most park areas, park rangers can write citations for using alcohol in prohibited areas.
See RANGERS. Page 3A