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  • Location: New Braunfels, Texas
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View Sample Pages : New Braunfels Herald Zeitung, August 25, 2004

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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - August 25, 2004, New Braunfels, Texas WEDNESDAY. AUGUST 25,2004 Zeitung tfcrENSIVE Canyon Cougarettes have the best mindset in a battle of wills against Alamo Heights. Page GA LIFE GARB CRAZINESS Low-carb dieting has taken America by storm, but how does it work? Page IB Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852. Vol. 153, No. 245 14 pages, 2 sections WWW. herald-zeitung. W ^arti’r cloudy High Low 96 77 Details 2B DEAR ABBY 4B CLASSIFIEDS 48 COMICS 3B CROSSWORD 38 FORUM 4A OBITUARIES 3A SPORTS 6A TV GRIDS 48Woman loses leg after car runs into her By Ron Maloney Staff Writer A 21-year-old Donna woman is recovering from major injuries she received in an accident on rain-slickened Interstate 35 Sunday afternoon. Brooke Army Medical CenCriminals plead guilty to drug, sex allegations — 23 years in the penitentiary. Gomez was arrested Feb. 25,2002, by undercover officers of the Comal County Metropolitan Narcotics Task Force and the Department of Public Safety narcotics unit out of San Antonio. Officers who served a search warrant at a mobile home off Valero Drive found large quantities of drugs and cash in the raid, Soane said. Gomez will first be eligible for parole when he serves one-fourth of his sentence, Soane said. Gregory A. Moehrig, 27, pleaded guilty to a nine-count indictment alleging aggravated sexual assault of a See BARGAIN Page 3A By Ron Maloney Staff Writer Two criminals took plea bargains rather than face Comal County juries this week — each accepting decades-long sentences in state prison. Assistant District Attorney Joe Soane said Rene Gomez, 40, pleaded guilty to three first-degree felony charges of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver. Because of state law that allows “stacking” of narcotics sentences, Gomez could have faced up to 297 years in state prison. Visiting District Judge Sam Robertson sentenced him to less than one-tenth that time ter officials would release no information on Smita Bhakta, who suffered an amputated leg in a 5 p.m. accident on northbound Interstate 35 just south of FM 725, except to report to police she was in stable condition. New Braunfels Police Cpl. James Rackley reported Bhakta was a passenger in a 2002 Nissan when it spun out in the rain. The driver pulled over to inspect the vehicle for damage and was standing behind it with Bhakta when Sarah Haag, 18, of New Braunfels, hydroplaned in the same place, striking Bhakta and then the rear of the Nissan. A second car, driven by Eryn Bryant, 23, of Schertz, then struck Haag’s vehicle, Rackley said. Police Lt. John Wommack Monday said no citations were issued in connection with the accident, which was one of several within a few minutes that caused hours-long closures on Interstate 35 and Texas 46. Wommack said the accident, like a similar one three years ago involving a Schertz police officer, underlined how critical it is to take safety measures in accidents — especially in bad weather. “If you don’t stay in your vehicle, don’t stand behind it,” Wommack said. “Get to the side away from traffic or get well away from it.” DAVID INGRAM/Herald-Zeitung Wilbur Meyer, 85, shows off a photo of himself from World War ll. Meyer has written at least 40 short stories in the past two years, many about his experiences in Germany. NBISD weighs itsTHE STORYTELLER    ag facility options World War II veteran puts tales to paper for benefit of others By Jennifer McMichael Special to the Herald-Zeitung Wilbur Meyer stands from his chair and walks past the plaque on the wall of World War II medals, past the framed black-and-white photograph of his crumpled, twisted plane smashed into a grassy field, past his great-grandmother’s white rocking chair more than IOO years old. And that's just three steps. He stands in front of a small card table scattered with three-ring binders and loose-leaf papers — his stories. Meyer, 85, has written at least 40 short stories since his wife, Gwen, died two years ago. “Everybody who dies has at least one or two good stories that he takes to the grave with him,” Meyer said. But he has already written more stories in the past couple years than most write in a lifetime. World ^War II veterans are reaching their late 80s and early 90s, but few share their experiences, and even fewer feel others are interested. Meyer counts himself in that minority, and at least one man from Stillwater, Okla., is grateful. Mark Moseley was 21 when his father, Hubert “Tufty” Moseley, died in 1970 from residual effects of living in a German prisoner of war camp, Moseley said. Meyer and the elder Moseley survived the camp, but Moseley never shared his experiences with his children, except to toss jokes. His daughter, now a sixth grade language arts teacher at Brady (Okla.) Middle School, said the freshness of the experience prevented him from sharing. “I keep thinking in the back of my mind that if my dad had lived this long,” See , Page 8A By Leigh Jones Staff Writer New Braunfels Independent School District trustees are not any closer to finding a home for the high school’s vocational agriculture facility. But, they are relatively sure it will not be located on county property. Citing concerns over the sinall size of the property and problems with building a permanent building on land the district does not own, trustees decided Monday night to look for other See FACILITY Page 8A con THUI HING IS DAY Pigskin atr, preview From Marion to Smithson Valley and everywhere in between, get the latest on your favorite local teams as gridiron action kicks off this week. t' , o* - v I/r rn i ^ v J Refinancing debt drops CISD tax rate By Leigh Jones Staff Writer If Comal Independent School District trustees adopt Thursday the proposed 2004-05 budget, administrators will have almost $77 million to cover operating expenses. After approving the budget, trustees will consider setting next year’s tax rate. The budget is based on a tax rate of $1.82 per $100 valuation, one cent less than last year. The one-penny reduction in the debt service rate is possible thanks to refinancing debt at a lower interest rate, said Director of Business Services Debra Smith. Although administrators had a comfort zone in debt service allocations, balancing the operating budget was more difficult. The district will make its first Chapter 41 “Robin Hood” payment this year, and the maintenance and operations rate cannot go higher than the $1.50 ceiling reached last year. Altogether, the proposed budget is roughly $4 million more than last year s. “lf we didn’t have the $3 million payment to the state, we would be in better shape,” Smith said. Fortunately for administrators ;md trustees, property values are up again this year. I Uglier values ensure the same tax rate will raise enough money to cover the district’s financial needs. Unfortunately for homeowners, higher values translate to ATAGLANCE See , Page 3A g Whet: Comal Independent School District public tax rate hearing and board meeting I When: 5:30 p.m. Thursday I Where: Comal Elementary School, 6720 FM 482 DIO YOU KNOW? g The proposed $1.82 tax rate is broken into $1.50 for maintenance and operations and 32 cents for debt service (interest and sinking). $1.50 is the maximum M&O rate a district can set. The tax bill on an average home valued at $160,707 will increase $211. Because the district is not taking on any new debt, it will not need to raise the debt service rate for several years. W /s* un*: it t *-*-*:***: /%t tr * options. The decision is not official because it was made during a discussion meeting where no o d    actionRon Reaves    could be taken. After setting aside the county’s offer, Superintendent Ron Reaves suggested ;