New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - August 26, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas
MELVIN C. JAHNSEN
Melvin C. Jahnsen passed away on Wednesday August 24,2005 at the age of 78.
Visitation will take place on Friday August 26, 2005 from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM at Zoeller Funeral Home in New Braunfels, Texas. Funeral Service will he conducted on Saturday August 27,2005 at 11:00 AM in Emmanuel
Lutheran Church in LaVer-nia, Texas. Interment will follow at 12:45 PM at Guadalupe Valley Memorial Park Cemetery in New Braunfels, Texas.
ZOELLER FUNERAL HOME
Funerals & Cremations
615 landa, New Braunfels (830) 625-2349
GEORGE JOHN BERICH
Funeral arrangements are complete at the Zoeller funeral Home for George John Berich, who passed away at his residence at Spring Branch at the age of 61 years. It was his wishes to
be cremated. Services will be at a later date.
ZOELLER FUNERAL HOME
Funerals & Cremations
615 Landa, New Braunfels (830) 625-2349
Funeral arrangements are
pending with Zoeller Funeral Home for Kenneth Klawit-ter who passed away on Thursday August 25,2005.
CONTINUED FROM Page 1A
Work will make noticeable difference
Davison promised the funds would create visible improvement in homes around town.
“We can spend up to $25,0(X) on each home, so you will definitely notice a difference when you drive by on the street.” she said.
Planning Director Frank Robbins said the noticeable difference would create a synergistic effect in local neighborhoods.
“The amount of money we received will make a substantial difference in some of these areas. That will make people feel better about their neigh-borhoods, encouraging them to take better care of their own properties,” he said.
Davison, who has 1( Hiked for grant money for the city’s housing program since 2003, said the amount of the
TDHCA award was quite an accomplishment for a city New Braunfels’ size.
“Normally, you would see a city like San Antonio pulling down a grant like this," she said. “This is huge for us.”
The TDHCA grant doubled the city’s home program budget for next year. Last year, New Braunfels only received $29,000 from die agency.
While the city will be able to assist 15 more homeowners than it did last year, many residents will have to live with their home’s major problems for at least one more year.
Davison’s repair waiting list is 41 names long.
“But, this is just the beginning," Davison said. "This is a grant we will continue to apply for every year. And they know we are good stewards, so we should get more good awards.” New Braunfels was one of 99 cities, counties, public housing authorities and nonprofit organizations to divvy up the $30 million HOME Investment Partnerships Program’s 2005 awards.
CONTINUED FROM Page 1A
Commissioners trim their own raises
an 8.6 percent pay hike. Scheel said the propose was necessary to move commissioners in line with other county commissioners in Texas.
While Minikin said he understood the reasoning, he could not support the increase when other elected officials were getting 5-percent raises.
During the discussion, Scheel said his concern was not with himself, but rather County Auditor David Renkin, whose salary is locked with the county judge’s in accordance with state law.
Last year, the employees got a 2 percent or 3 percent increase,” Scheel said. “The elected officials got nothing. The county auditor’s salary is set on my salary. I Ie cannot be paid more than me. Last year, county employees got a raise and David Renkin got nothing.”
Scheel then asked if there was a way to increase his salary without actually increasing his pay the full amount.
“Could I take a 7 percent increase and give 2 percent back?” he asked.
But Renkin said he would prefer to have his salary increase limited rather than having to play with the budget tex) much.
In the end, commissioners and the other elected officials received a 5 percent increase while county employees saw their raises start at 3 percent with the chance to get more.
Millikin said his amendment was aimed primarily at letting department heads have greater control over salaries. The budget will allow department heads to either offer no raise or merit raises of 2 percent or 4 percent.
The COIA increases will go into effect Jan. 1,2(X)6, with die merit increases starting July I, 2006.
“I would rather have department heads making that decision,’’ Millikin said. “I don't want us to make that decision.”
T he salary decision will save the county close to $400 during 2006, but could cost as
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Commissioner Jay Millikin
much as $300,000 in 2007.
Commissioners also decided to spend up to $30,000 to determine whether the salaries paid to em-
Friday, August 26, 2005 — Herald-Zeitung — Page 3A
Parker loses fight to pay sheriff s personnel more
ployees were sufficient when compared to other counties.
The amendment specifically said the county would hire an outside agency to conduct a complete salary survey. While commissioners supported the survey, lack Dawson and Jan Kennady said the information should be used to ensure county employees get paid in line with similar employees from other governments.
Millikin warned that agreeing in advance to do so could force commissioners to raise the tax rate again in 2007.
“We saw this coming a year ago, we told people this was coming," Millikin said. “If you think this was tough, wait until next year.”
Other changes to the budget included an increased cost of $235,000 for the county jail. Scheel explained that due to a new federal prison in Pearsall, the Immigration and Naturalization Service planned to pull all of its prisoners out of the county jail immediately.
Scheel had already reduced the compensation expected from the federal government in his initial budget.
The budget discussion was held in conjunction with a public hearing where no one showed up to discuss the spending plan.
“Our public hearing today was attended only by staffers and elected officials,” Parker said. “That saddens me. Especially because, in my mind, we could have done more and no one came to speak.”
By David Rupkahris
Commissioner Greg Parker went to battle for the sheriff’s department Thursday, but came up short when no other commissioners supported his idea to raise taxes to offer bigger pay raises.
Parker opened a discussion on the 2006 county budget by asking that the proposed 2-cent tax increase be increased by a penny. Each penny added to the county tax rolls brings in $612,000 in revenue.
Parker suggested the extra money be used to offer sheriff s office employees — deputies, dispatchers and jailers — as well as county constables alo percent raise.
Sheriff Bob Holder approached commissioners early in the budget process, asking that his deputies receive a 16 percent raise with dispatchers and jailers getting 12 percent. Holder said the increased money was necessary to move his employees in line with the officers at the New Braunfels Police Department.
When County Judge Danny Scheel released his budget to commissioners several weeks ago, it included a 5-percent raise for all county employees. Thursday, that amount was amended to a 3 percent cost of living increase with the possibility of merit raises of up to 4 percent more.
“I want to make this I cent take care of the employees,” Parker said. “There are ways to get this done, and this is it.”
Commissioner Jay Millikin questioned the tax rate hike, saying a 2-cent hike was already too much since it crest
al want to make this I cent take care of the employees. There are ways to get this done, and this is it/’
— Greg Parker
ed the rollback amount that could lead to a challenge by citizens. By state law, the county can raise its tax collections 8 percent annually. Anything higher is subject to petition by citizens.
“All we do is open ourselves up for scrutiny every time we pass that 8 percent mark,’’ Millikin said. “We’re already at 9.6 percent.”
But Parker was unfazed.
“All I can say is bring it on.’ We have to do what’s right, period,” Parker said.
But Parker’s arguments didn’t sway the rest of the commissioners, who voted against the amendment. Because he proposed the budget, Scheel did not vote.
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