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View Sample Pages : New Braunfels Herald Zeitung, April 25, 1999

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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 25, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas FELS Herald-Zei 20332    13009 10/22/99 SO-WEST h I CRO PU Bt I SHING 2627 E YANDELL DR 6 8 IEL POSO, TX 79903- I Ui\IU Vol. 148, No. 112    52    pages    in    3    sections    April    25,    1999 Sunday Serving Comal County since 1852 $1.00 Inside ► Little railroad The Landa Park miniature train marked 30 years in New Braunfels on Friday. Read about the history of this New Braunfels icon. / 1B ► In contention Area baseball teams stiH have playoff hopes as Astrict action nears the end. Catch up with your favorite team in Sports./11A ►Homecoming The New Braunfels Herakt-Zeitung offices moved back to 707 Landa St. this weekend. This paper was printed early to accommodate our move. Some sports and Texas Lotto results were not available at the time of printing. For complete results, see Tuesday’s HerakJ-Zeitung. We apologize for any inconvenience./ 4A Weather The slight chance of rain today is expected to continue through Tuesday with temperatures expected to stay relatively warm.Index Abby.........................................2B Business............................9-1    CA Classified............................6-16B Crossword................................2B Forum.......................................8A Local.........................................4A Obits.........................................3A Sports................................11-15A Today........................................2A Key Code 77 Comal bids Evans final farewell By Chris Crews Staff Writer About 300 mourners attended the First United Methodist Church Friday to bid a final farewell to retired county commissioner J. L. “Jumbo” Evans. Evans lost a battle with cancer Tuesday at the age of 78. He was the Precinct I County Commissioner from 1980 to 19%. Rev. Bert Clayton, Evans* pastor at Canyon Lake United Methodist Church, said Evans had a “remarkable life** and eulogized him as a “fighter” “As a B-17 pilot in World War II... he fought for home and country. As county commissioner he fought for the community.... In the past few years, he fought for Ufo,’* Clayton said. The crowd at the service was dotted with men wearing gold Lions Club vests and white Masonic aprons. Ron Zipp of New Braunfels knew Evans as a Lion and a Mason as well as personally and professionally. “Comal County has lost an outstanding citizen that has left an indelible mark on this community,” Zipp said. The county honored Evans recently by naming the Jumbo Evans Sports Park off US. 281 in western Comal County in his honor. Safety lessons After shootings, heightened awareness keeps schools on alert Pailbears at J.L. “Jumbo’’ Evans' funeral carry his casket out of First United Methods Church after the funeral ceremony Friday. ROOM CORNETT/HerWd- Zeitung Bv Peri Stone, Heather Tooo and Chris Crews Staff Writers Rumors of a bomb threat and a theater prop mistaken for a real explosive wreaked havoc at load high schools Friday as students, administrators and police remained on heightened alert in the aftermath of the Columbine High School tragedy. New Braunfels High School was evacuated shortly after noon Friday when custodians cleaning reported seeing a bomb-like device on the school^ stage near the cafeteria. Police were dispatched to the school at 12:13 p.m., and the school was completely evacuated by the time they arrived a few minutes later. Sgt. John McEachem said the school identified the “bomb” as a theatrical prop used in a school dramatic production. He said the device consisted of six pieces of broomstick painted red to resemble dynamite and a phony timing device attached to it that looked Uke the inside of a cheap mechanical alarm clock. McEachem said students and administrators handled the situation in a calm, efficient manner. He said the only change in procedure if a possible live bomb was found would have been to contact an army ordnance unit in San Antonio to dispose of the device. McEachem said he had noticed a dramatic increase in activity at the schools in the past three days. “What we’re seeing is probably heightened awareness. Iti not a panic situation,” McEachem said. BOWN CORNETTI leild-ZaAung Above: New Braunfels Middle School teacher Sandra Lindsey talks with seventh-grade students about safety on school grounds. Below: New Braunfels High School students depart after school on Friday afternoon. 5 teens charged in plot of Littleton-like assault in Wimberley “There has been more interchange between students, administrators and police than we’ve had in the past year” Student response to the event was varied. “It scared me more that we weren’t prepared for it,” said junior Matt Wilkinson, explaining that the administration should have a better plan as to where the students should go during an evacuation. See SAFETY/BA WIMBERLEY (AP) — Five junior high students were arrested Friday in connection with a purported plot to kill fellow students and teachers in a school assault similar to the one carried out several days ago in Littleton, Colo. They were taken into custody Friday afternoon and held on juvenile charges of conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit arson and conspiracy to manufacture explosives, authorities said. “The investigation . . . showed that they had targeted fellow students and teachers they were going to kill,” authorities told the San Antonio Express-News. “We've got a lot of shaken students and parents tonight," said Sgt. Allen Bridges, a spokesman with the Hays County Sheriff^ Department. “They seemed like regular junior high school kids.” Wimberley is a town of about 3,000 people — 40 miles northeast of San Antonio and 40 miles southwest of Austin. School and law enforcement officials said Friday night they believed that the eighth-grade students had been planning since January to carry out an assault at school. budget up for review Public hearing slated Monday night By Peri Stone Staff Writer lf the City of New Braunfels* 1999-2000 budget is accepted as is, the average household could pay about $15 more in taxes a year but enjoy the benefits of more firefighters, police officers and youth activities. The public will have a chance to comment on the budget at 6 p.m. Monday at a public hearing in the New Braunfels Municipal Building, 424 S. Casten Are. City council also might vote Monday to propose a tax rate increase. Making the proposal is the first of three steps to ratting the tax rate. lf council makes the proposal Monday, it then will schedule a public hearing for May IO. On May 24, both the budget and tax rate will be adopted. The proposed 2000 budget is $18,394 million. The current amended budget is $17,571 million. The city’s chief financial officer Chet Lewis said the tax rate might be raised from $.29887 per $100 valuation to about $.31312 per $100 valuation For the average household (with a value of about $80,000), this would mean a tax bill increase to $199.13 from $183.47. The $.31312 is not a solid number, according to Lewis, and is subject to change. The exact amount will depend on the budget accepted. The budget process started in January for staff members, and department beads met March I, 2 and 3 to go over each others budget. During these workshops, department heads helped pare down each others budgets to prepare for a meeting March 24, when budgets were presented to city council. See CHYMIA Stress test: Help your children succeed on TAASTest Schedule ■■■■■■■■■■■■BttttaattaattBttittattiTAAS tests will take place: • TUESDAY - TAAS exit-level writing, grades 3-8 math and Spanish math • WEDNESDAY - TAAS exit-level math, grades 3-8 reading and Spanish reading • THURSDAY - TAAS exit-level reading, and grade 8 social studies • FRIDAY -TAAS grade 8 science By Heather Tooo Staff Writer Every spring, local students don their thinking caps and sharpen their pencils to face another round of standardized tests. Students across Texas will sit down this week to take their Texas Assessment of Academic Skills tests, the stated standardized indicator of student performance. The results of TAAS tests are used to evaluate student academic performance levels and are a significant part of school and school district accreditation ratings. High school students and third through eighth-grade students in both New Braunfels and Comal independent school districts will be tested on different academic skills Tuesday through Friday: •Tuesday - TAAS exit-level writing, grades 3-8 math and Spanish math •Wednesday TAAS exit-level math, grades 3 -8 reading and Spanish reading •Thursday - TAAS exit-level reading, and grade 8 social studies •Friday - TAAS grade 8 science Comal schools have been preparing students for the TAAS tests with practice exams and individual tutoring since January. Local students now are taking a break from their TAAS “training” with stress-reliever activities. Memorial Elementary principal Sharon Tate said third-grade students would participate in a “Sock it to TAAS” day Monday. “We’re saying it’s a no pencil, no paper day with math games and different learning centers,” Tate said. “We’re trying to take the pressure off kids before they take the tests.” Mountain Valley Intermediate students had a pep rally Friday to celebrate their hard work. Memorial Intermediate also sponsoredSeeTAAS/SA ;