New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 30, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas
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INSIDE RAGING FIRE
No one injured as late-night blaze destroys $500,000 home in Spring Branch. Page 8A
Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852.
Vol. 154, No. 140 16 pages, 2 sections
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DEAR ABBY 3B CLASSIFIEDS 3B COMICS 2B CROSSWORD 2B FORUM 4A OBITUARIES 3A SPORTS SA TV GRIDS 3B
SPORTS MOVING ON
The New Braunfels softball team swept Alamo Heights to move on in the Class 4A playoffs. Page 5AThe Scooter Store faces federal lawsuit
By Ron Maloney
If things were tough at The Scooter Store, they got more difficult Friday.
A legal battle with the federal government heated up in a civil countersuit filed Friday by the Department of Justice in the U.S. District
Court for the Western District of Texas in San Antonio, in which federal attorneys allege the company submitted fraudulent claims to Medicare and Medicaid.
The Scooter Store is one of Comal County’s largest employers.
It markets mobility scooters and
power wheelchairs to the aged, disabled and infirm with a guarantee that if the company finds a customer eligible and then the federal government refuses to pay for the device, The Scooter Store will pay for it.
Charles Miller, spokesman for the civil division of the U.S. Department
of Justice, said Friday the court action was a counterclaim to a complaint filed by The Scooter Store for reimbursement for hundreds of claims in cases where the Department of I lealth and I luman Services disallowed reimbursements for power wheelchairs.
The federal attorneys involved in the case would not be available, Miller said.
“We don’t discuss litigation outside the courtroom,” he explained. Since 2003, when The Scooter
See LAWSUIT Page 3A
Boyer opens big lead in campaign contributions
By David Rupkalvis
Mayoral candidate Bruce Boyer continued to outpace incumbent Adam Cork by collecting $5,500 in contributions during the second filing period that ran March 28 through April 29.
After the first filing period, Boyer held an advantage of more than $4,000 over Cork
and he added almost $3,400 to his advantage in the last month.
Through the first two months of the campaign, Boyer has collected $22,817. Cork has collected $15,219, including $2,109
See CAMPAIGN Page 2A
■ Compare mayoral candidates Adam Cork and Bruce Boyer in Sunday's Herald-Zeitung
The onslaught of illegal drugs does more than just nurt users, it costs the entire community.
Comal ISD to reconsider school naming policy
By Leigh Jones
Canyon Lake High School will keep its name — for now.
Although the naming committee, reconvened in February to reconsider its recommendation in light of new evidence of conflict between the name and established Canyon I Ugh School, gave the school board three options for a name change Thursday, trustees instead took the advice of Associate Superintendent Nancy Cobb to scrap the whole process and start from scratch.
Cobb told trustees she had looked into the naming policies of other districts and decided the Comal Independent School District policy could use some revision.
“I have done a little research that might assist you in making your decision,” she said. “I found that most districts have a seven-member naming committee, appointed by the board. They have three months to make a choice, and before they
See NAME Page 3A
AN ENCHANTED EVENING
Area schools get ready for prom
By Leigh Jones
The New Braunfels I Ugh School prom decorating committee got a pass from class Friday, but they were far from idle.
The students took all day to turn the Scooter Store’s Ray Harrison Auditorium into an elegant wonderland for tomorrow’s “Enchanted Evening.”
“Its going to be a very elegant and romantic evening,” promised sponsor Julie Estes. “It kind of reminds me of a wedding reception.”
Estes is expecting around 400 Unicorns to get dressed up to strut their stuff between the dessert table and the dance floor.
“Prom is a big deal for us because we don’t have any other formal dances during the year,” she said.
Smithson Valley High School students also will hold their prom tonight in San Antonio.
The La Villita Assembly Building will be decked out with park benches and a miniature version of the Eiffel tower for a “Rendezvous in Paris.”
Sponsor Sharon Thompson, whose daunter Casey is the junior class president, said die plans were going very well.
“We’ve sold 700 tickets already,” she said. “JJ and lojo from Mix 96.1 will be our DJs. That might have something to do with it.”
Last year, fewer than 600 SVHS students attended prom.
Canyon High students will have to wait one more week to put on their finery, but when they do, they will party like celebrities.
“Our theme is A Walk on the Red Carpet,’” said sponsor Michelle Koehl. “We’re trying to make this a very special night.”
Like their crosstown rivals, the Cougars will be dancing in a new venue May 7 — the Garden Ridge
See PROM Page 8A
NBMS battles back after chaotic food fight disrupts school
By Leigh Jones
The New Braunfels Middle School cafeteria erupted in a chaotic food fight Thursday that resulted in six students going home with suspensions.
The fight started during a condensed lunch period when two groups were combined due to a short schedule.
“This type of behavior will not be tolerated and this incident is causing us to look hard at all spe
cial activities for the remainder of the year,” said Principal Demetria Cummins.
According to a New Braunfels Independent School District press release, an investigation determined several students organized the fight with the knowledge of at least one parent. The release does not name the parent or explain the particulars of the investigation.
“I encourage parents to get involved and pass on information that could be useful to teachers
and administrators. It would have helped us if this parent had let us know of the planned food fight. We all have to work together to teach our children to respect authority, themselves and each other,” Cummins said.
To prevent future food fight incidents, cafeteria tables will be limited to eight students each and teachers will be required to eat with students.
Cummins plans to meet with teachers and students to discuss
actions and consequences of the melee but has decreed sales of bottled drinks, snacks and ice cream will be discontinued indefinitely.
The food fight comes in the middle of ongoing parent complaints about discipline problems at the middle school campus.
Administrators are working on a plan for improvement and already have provided more spots in the district’s disciplinary alternative campus for seventh- and eighth-graders.
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Photos by DAVID INGRAM/Herald-Zeitung
New Braunfels High School juniors Sidney Krawczyk, left, and Laura Fuller, decorate an archway atThe Scooter Store as they prepare for tonight's Junior-Senior Prom.The year's theme is "Some Enchanted Evening." Below, Allison Hammond trims some decorative material over a doorway Friday afternoon as she and her fellow Unicorns prepare for prom.
Some students might wish they were traveling to San Antonio, hut Koehl said the closer location translated into cheaper ticket prices.
“In the past, we’ve charged as much as $30. This year it only costs $15,” she said.
When students arrive, they will be "assaulted” on the red carpet by eight members of the "paparazzi,” photojournalists from the CTV class on hand to record the event.
Although this is the first night of glamour and glitter for Comal