New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - August 25, 1995, New Braunfels, Texas
FRIDAYUnicorns hit and miss in scrimmage. See Sports, Page 5.
The Landa Park Gazebo
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14 Pages in two sections ■ Friday, Aug. 25,1995
Serving Comal County for more than 143 years ■ Home of BARBARA GRAY
Vol. 143, No. 205Inside
Birthday wishes from the Herald-Zeitung!
The New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung extends birthday wishes to: Barbara Gray, Jed Purcell, Bradley Pfeil, Arnold Don Fell* ner, Reita R. Castilleja, Louisa Alvarez (Saturday, 77 years), Amy Rheinslaender (22 years), Rose Schulz, Dominga Padilla, Isabel Rodriguez and Felipe Castilleja. Happy 33rd anniversary to Audrey and Bill Schroeder.
River and aquifer Information
Comal River -254 cubic-feet-per* sec., down 4 c.f.s. from yesterday Edwards Aquifer — 624.57 feet above sea level, up .03.
Guadalupe River — 108 c.f.s.
Moasi train snow
New Braunfels Summer Model Train Show will be held from 9 a m. to 5:30 p.m. Aug.
26 at the New Braunfels Civic Center, 380 S. Seguin.
Admission is $3 for adults and $1 for under 18. Under five free. Railroad art, date nails, model trains, operating layouts, building kits and supplies, memorabilia, books, tools. Call 935-2517 for information.
Toby's School off Dance registration continues
Toby's School of Dance has expanded its registration until September. For more information. call 629-7974.
CCCS thanks supporters
Comal County Community Services would like to extend its appreciation to area businesses for their contribution tc> the CCCS Quality Improvement Process. Their gifts are being used as Customer Service Awards in order to enhance service delivery to customers. Thanks go out to Rockin 'R' River Rides, Blimpie Subs and Salads, Adobe Cafe. Subway, Adobe Verde,
Gruene River Company Landa Street Car Wash.
Trad# show tickets on sale
Tickets for the Chamber’s Business Trade Show to be held Sept. 12 and 13 are on sale at the chamber office or from any member of the Trade Show committee. This is the seventh year for the show. There are 66 booths, with more than 60 exhibitors showcasing their products and/or services. Many door prizes will be given, with a trip for two to Las Vegas as the grand prize. The Sneak Preview on Tuesday from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. is a ‘gala-like’ affair featuring exhibit previews, show-type entertainment, cocktails and hors d oeuvres. The show on Wednesday includes drawings at noon for five Texas Get-Away Trips with live entertainment and complimentary happy hour from 5:50 p.m. to closing
Comal County farmers market is held every Friday at 5 p.m. at the county fairgrounds.
County passes $16.7 million budget
By DENISE DZIUK
This newspaper is printed on recycled newsprint
The Comal County Commissioners Court approved a $16.7 million budget for 19%, which will increase spending and allow a drop in property tax.
County Judge Carter Casteel said the 1996 budget is generally the same as last year, and is only a little higher. She said the overall tax rate has been lowered slightly, which is due to an increase in the number of residents, as well as an increase in appraisal values. This means the county should be able to collect more taxes with a smaller rate.
The approved budget, has a property tax of 29.218 cents per $100 of appraised value, which is lower than
the current 30.323 cents. This means an owner of a home with a taxable value of $50,000 will pay $146.09 in county property taxes, compared to the current amount of $151.62.
According to figures released in the budget proposal, personnel will account for 52.24 percent of the total expenditures for 1996. Casteel said this will include a 2.1 percent pay increase across the board for all county employees. After supervisory evaluations, an employee could also receive an additional 2 or 4 percent merit raise in July.
Elected officials will also receive a 4.1 percent pay increase. Of that, 2.1 percent is the increase in the Texas cost of living. The remaining 2 percent represents merit pay.
Casteel made an amendment to the budget Thursday morning on the request of the county engineer. In the original proposal, $10,000 was budgeted to construct guardrails on the fust crossing on River Road. Casteel amended that amount to $60,000, which will be used to put guardrails on all the crossings.
The budget also continues to fund three programs begun in 1995. Rural recycling, environmental enforcement, and the parks program will receive a total amount of $338,000, “in an effort to better meet the needs of the citizens," Casteel said in a letter to the commissioners.
Funding for the budget will come from six major areas. Property taxes
will account for the biggest source of revenue, and will be 49.51 percent. Sales tax will constitute 13.82 percent of the total revenue. The remaining revenue will come from fees, 11.82 percent, auto registration, 9.03 percent, fines, 5.22 percent, and other, 10.59 percent.
“It is a good solid budget for the county. We’re delivering the services I believe the citizens want with a less than 30-cent tax rate," said Casteel.
Commissioner Danny Sc heel questioned a $15,000 expenditure. The budget provides $ 15,000 for the purchase of new Christmas lights for the courthouse.
“I don’t understand how we can, at this time, spend $15,000 new lights,
Christmas lights, for the courthouse that will be used one month out of the year at night hours only,” he said.
“Things like that I have a hard time seeing spending taxpayers' money on,” he said during an earlier interview.
Chamber of Commerce official Anna Lee Hicks said the lights were part of a three-phase plan to bring a winter festival to town, which will boost the economy during the slow winter months. Scheel said he was very opposed to the lighting, however he could not see voting against the entire budget because of one item. The budget passed with a four to one vote. Commissioner J.L. “Jumbo" Evans voted against it because he felt there was “too much fat in it.”Uke a familyCook’s business philosophy helps build a success story
Jim Cook said the key to leading a successful business is “looking after your fellow man as best as you can."
Cook, an agent for State Farm Insurance in New Braunfels for 23 years, also treats his clients and employees as more than just business contacts.
“He doesn’t treat it as a business; he treats it as a family," said Charlotte Wood, an office representative for Cook for almost 14 years.
Cook’s philosophy, translated into profit and production for his agency, has helped him to receive the national Legion of Honor award from State Farm each year since the award’s inception in 1975. In May, Cook was the only agent in the South Texas region to receive the Crystal Elegance award, commemorating his 20 years of achieving the company’s goals.
Cook was one of 30 recipients nationwide to receive the Crystal Elegance award, out of more than 18,000 eligible agents.
Cook has been with State Farm for more than 30 years. Before opening up his New Braunfels agency in 1972, he was in the company’s administration, and said he had a good salary, a company car and an expense account. He and his family had to sacrifice throughout the start-up of his agency.
During that first Christmas, his youngest daughter Donna was asked in her Sunday School class at First Baptist Church what she was getting for Christmas.
“She told her Sunday School teacher, and her class,4 We’re not getting much for Christmas this year. We’re helping my daddy start a new business,’ ’’ Cook said.
He paused for a second, then took out his folded white handkerchief and started to wipe his eyes.
’‘I’m sorry, it still brings a tear to my eye,” he said.
Cook said he could not have been as successful as he has been without the support of his wife Barbara, the agency’s bookkeeper. Cook also credited his office staff in helping him meet the company’s goals each year
“It took a lot of hard work, not just on my part but on my staffs part,” Cook said.
Sue Bankston, an office representative for three years, said Cook is one of the best bosses she has worked for, and said she never has to worry about job security.
“He’s very protective of us," Bankston said.
Cook said he will try to keep his agency profitable through tough times for the insurance business, which includes more regulation by the government, big lawsuits and natural disasters.
Cook said he is looking forward to a comfortable retirement a in a few years, but he is sure that another agent will “pick up the strings" and continue to keep the agency successful.Students like idea of local college courses
By SUSAN FLYNT ENGLAND
Staff Writ et
Ethnicity off students in survey
Second in a series
lf there were college courses offered in New Braunfels, what should they be — San Antonio College and the New Braunfels Committee on Higher Education set out to find out.
They surveyed five groups of people whom New Braunfels college courses might serve: high school seniors, college students, non-traditional students, senior citizeas and employees.
The second in a six-part series, this story focuses on the study of area college students.
Only students living in New Braunfels or Comal County were polled. These commuting students were enrolled for the fall 1994 semester at several area colleges — San Antonio College, St. Philip’s College, Palo Alto College, The University of Texas at San Antonio, Texas Lutheran College, and Southwest Texas State University.
The students returned 336 surveys.
A great majority of the students surveyed, about three-fourths, were working while going to school. A full 42 percent had full-time jobs, and about a third were working part-time.
The students responded that having access to college courses in New Braunfels would make their pursuit of higher education easier — 82 percent of them.
As with high school students, what courses were available was most important to whether they would enroll in locally offered courses. Almost half of the respondents picked course availability as the deciding factor.
About one-third of college students said nearness to home would be most likely to spur them to take college courses in New Braunfels.
Almost half of the students said they would prefer to take classes in the evening, from 6 to IO p.m. Twenty-seven
Guidelines can help make leaving abusive mate less risky
HUrANIC *7 I* St
percent preferred morning classes, and about 17 percent had no preference.
Those polled were asked what kind of support services they would most likely use. Over half, 52 percent, said they wanted financial aid. About one-third said they wanted help in career planning.
Educational goals were job-related for a great number of the college students. Getting a better job was the goal for 45 percent of the respondents. About 29 percent thought education would help them obtain a job. Some students, 16 percent, would enroll in courses to improve skills they use in their current jobs.
As with high school students, the great majority of college students wanted to earn four-year degrees — 69 percent of them.
(The series on the higher education survey continues Sunday with results from non-traditional students surveyedJ
By SUSAN FLYNT ENGLAND
New Texas laws have strengthened the legal wall of protection around victims of family violence — the protective order.
While the new laws will benefit women trying to break the cycle of family violence, they aren’t always enough when a batterer has become an obsessed “stalker,” said Bill Reimer, Comal County District Attorney. “No amount of protective order is going to stop that type of person," Renner said.
Women can protect themselves, however — in many ways.
The Comal County District Attorney’s office has a “Domestic Safety Violence Plan" available for anyone to pick up free of charge. The office is located in the Comal County Courthouse Annex, 150 N. Seguin Avenue.
Women experiencing family violence are urged to call the Comal County Women’s Center office at 620-7520 or the crisis line at 620-4357, said women’s center Legal Advocate Amy Thompson.
Portions of the Domestic Violence Safety Plan follows:
Safety during an explosive
a.) If an argument seems unavoidable, try to have it in a room or area that has access to an exit and not in a bathroom, kitchen, or anywhere near weapons.
b) Practice how to get out of your home safely. Identify which doors, windows or stairwell would be best.
c) Have a packed bag ready and keep it in an undisclosed but accessible place in order to leave quickly.
d) Identify a neighbor you can tell about the violence and ask that they Call the police if they hear a disturbance coming from your home.
e) Devise a code word to use with your children, family, friends, and neighbors when you need the police.
0 Decide and plan for where you will go if you have to leave home (even if you don’t think you will need to).
g) Use your own instincts and judgment. lf the situation is very dangerous, consider giving the abuser what he wants to calm him down. You have the right to protect yourself until you are out of danger.
h) Always remember — YOU DON’T DESERVE TO BE HIT OR THREATENED.
Safety when preparing to leave:
a) Open a savings account in your own name to start to establish or increase your independence. Think of other ways in which you can increase your independence.
b) Leave money, an extra set of keys, copies of important documents and extra clothes with someone you trust so you can leave quickly.
c) Determine who would be able to let you stay with them or lend you some money.
d) Keep the shelter phone number close at hand and keep some change or a calling card on you at all times for emergency phone calls.
e) Review your safety plan as often as possible in order to plan the safest way to leave your batterer. Remember — LEAVING YOUR BATTERER IS THE MOST DANGEROUS TIME.
Safety in your own home:
a) Change the locks on your doors as soon as possible. Buy additional locks and safety devises to secure your windows.
b) Discuss a safety plan with your children for when you are not with them.
c) Inform your children’s school, day care, etc. about who has permission to pick up your children.
d) Inform neighbors and landlord that your partner no longer lives with you and that they should call the police if they see him near your home.
Safety with a protective order:
a) Keep your protective order on you at all times. (When you change your purse, that should be the first thing that goes in it.)
b) Call the police if your partner breaks the protective order.
c) Think of alternative ways to keep safe if the police do not respond right away.
d) Inform family, friends and neighbors that you have a protective order in effect.
Safety on the job and in public:
a) Decide who at work you will inform of your situation. This should include office or building security (provide a picture of your batterer if possible).
b) Arrange to have someone screen your telephone calls if possible.
c) Devise a safety plan for when you leave work. Have someone escort you to your car, bus or train. Use a vanety of routes to go home if possible. Think about what you would do if something happened while going home. (i.e. in your car, on the bus, etc.)
Your safety and emotional health:
a) lf you are thinking of returning to a potentially abusive situation, discuss an alternative plan with someone you trust.
b) If you have to communicate with your partner, determine the safest way to do so.
c) Have positive thoughts about self and be assertive with others about your needs.
d) Read books, articles and poems to help you feel stronger.
e) Decide who you can talk to freely and openly to give you the support you need.
0 Plan to attend a women’s or victim’s support group for at least two weeks to gain support from others and learn more about yourself and the relationship.Herald-Zeitung adds a staff writer to expand its county coverage. See Page 4A.