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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 31, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas OO>AV New iJdateSiNFELSHerald-Zeitung c Vol. 149, No. 31    20    pages    in    2    sections    December    31,    1999 Friday Serving Comal County since 1852 50 centsY2K Contacts power • New Braunfels Utilities customers call 625-8564; extra employees will be on staff. • Pedernales Electric Co op customers can call (800) 554-4732. lf the power goes out, turn off all appliances and heating and cooling units to lessen the load on the line. CABLE Call Time Warner Cable’s 24-hour customer line at (800) 255-0501 or (210) 244-0500. Extra people will be on staff. PHONE Officials are asking residents not to use the phone at midnight unless it is an emergency. A large number of people testing the telephone at the same time could overload the system. Jason Hillery, spokesman for Southwestern Bell, said residents should not be concerned if there is a fast, busy signal when they pick up the phone after midnight. Guadalupe Valley Telephone Cooperative members can call the 24-hour repair hotline at (830) 885-4050. 911 In case of an emergency, dial 911. Calls to 911 during the holiday should go through as normal. POLICE The communications department will be up and running and residents can call New braunfels Police at 608-2179 for non-emergencies and 911 for emergencies. About 10 extra officers will be on duty from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m. New Year’s Eve for a total of about 20-25 officers. SHERIFFS OFFICE Call the sheriff’s office at 620-3400 for non-emergencies and 911 for emergencies. The sheriff’s office will have triple the amount of officers on duty, and all other officers will be on stand-by in case of an emergency. FIRE DEPARTMENT New Braunfels Fire and Rescue will beef up its staffing to about 22 personnel New Year’s Eve. Other personnel will be on call in case of an emergency, Chief Jack Collier said. RED CROSS Red Cross will be up and running New Year’s Eve in case of a disaster. The local Red Cross office, 100 Main Plaza, can be reached at 606-1999. EMERGENCY OPERATIONS CENTER The Comal County Emergency Operations Center at the sheriff’s office will be fully staffed from 8 p.m. until at least 4 a.m.Three, two, one...World prepares to ring in millennium Park improvements plans headed back to voters NB rejected bond proposal in 198S By Peri Stone-Palmquist Staff Writer Voters rejected a parks improvement bond proposition in 1985, but city officials hope residents will have a different view come May. In October 1985, the city presented an $11.5 million bond — including $ 1.9 million for park improvements. About $7 million in bonds for fire stations, streets and drainage improvements were approved. Parks staffing needs growing — Page 4A But voters rejected bonds for park improvements, a civic center, new city hall, golf course improvements and a cover for the pool in Landa Park. The city now is working on finalizing a list of $38.6 million worth of bond projects, including $1.14 million for park improvements. % Just at it did in 1985, the list includes new playground equipment for Haymarket Park and Cypress Bend Park. But the similarities stop there. In 1985, the park improvement proposition included volleyball courts, tennis courts and other recreational facilities. The 2000 proposition includes playground equipment for Landa Park and new restrooms for Landa Park, Cypress Bend Park, Prince Solms, Hillman Island, Ernest Eikel Park and Haymarket Park. “Three stalls is just not enough to meet demand,” parks director Iris Neffendorf said. And the restrooms aren’t handicap accessible. Neither is the playground equipment, she said. Bond Series Today Park improvement bond projects and staff requests “Some of the equipment is antiquated,” she said. “And it doesn’t meet safety standards.” Council will finalize the bond package by mid-February and voters will have the final say in May. Inside Abby......................... .....7 A Classifieds.................. ..3-8B Comics.......................... ...TOA Crossword.................... ......7 A Forum........................... ......6A Local/Metro.................. ......4A Movies.......................... ......7 A Obituaries..................... ......3A Sports........................... ..1-2B Today........................... ......2A Television...................... ..10A www.herald-zeitung com Key code 76 Parents of first 2000 baby will have hands full By Heather Todd Staff Writer The proud parents of the first baby bom in 2000 at McKenna Memorial Hospital will get the royal treatment thanks to some generous local businesses. A local limousine service, J.B.’s Limousines, offered to give the first baby of the new year and his or her parents a ride home when they are released from the hospital. The limousine ride is just one of several gifts that will be given to one lucky mother who delivers the first baby after midnight Jan. I at McKenna Memorial Hospital. But, the last baby of 1999 won’t be left out of the festivities either. McKenna Memorial Hospital and local businesses also donated gifts to the parents of the last baby bom tonight. Betty Welwood, neo-natal coordinator at McKenna Memorial Hospital, said she spearheaded the effort to collect gifts for the last baby of 1999 and the first baby of 2000 this year. “I just got out and walked the streets and visited with businesses to see if anyone was interested,” she said. Welwood said this would be the first time in several years McKenna has coordinated an effort to give the first baby of the New Year’s gifts and donations from the community. “It’s good community advertising (for the businesses) and it gives them a chance to be a part of this baby’s life,” Welwood said. “And, we’ve had a wonderful response.” In between changing diapers and feedings, local parents of the first 2000 baby will have plenty to keep them busy this year. Parents of the New Year's baby will get to See BABY/5A WAI Ll/Herald-Zeitung Above: American Legion member Chuck Welty volunteers to decorate the club’s dancehall for the annual New Year’s Eve party. About 100 are expected to attend the gathering. Top photo: Comal County Commissioner Jack Dawson is counting down to the new millennium with this handy hat he got from the county road and bridge department. Dawson plans to wear the hat tonight at the emergency operations center in the sheriff’s office. Officials: Comal ready for Y2K By Christina Minor and Erin MCGRUDER Staff Writers Go ahead and party — Comal County is ready. With just hours left until the new millennium, key city and county officials said they were not predicting any Y2K-related disasters. Comal County Judge Danny Scheel said he was confident the county was ready for whatever the New Year might bring. “We are perfectly at ease,” Scheel said. “We are doing things to calm public concerns. With all the wealth of information available to us, we have no concerns about New Year’s Eve or midnight.” Local law enforcement also is treating the beginning of Y2K like any other holiday weekend by beefing up the number of officers on patrol, but not worrying too much about a millennium disaster. And neither are local residents as they prepare to ring in the New Year with friends and family. The Seguin Elks Lodge No. 1229, 353 Seguin Ave., is gearing up for the millennium with a New Year’s Eve dance from 9 p.m. to I a.m. Country western group Texas Country will perform. Cost is $7.50 per person in advance or $8.50 per person at the door. Children ages 12 and younger are admitted free. At the American Legion Comal Post 179,410 W. Coll Street, members are invited to a New Year’s Eve dance from 8 p.m. to midnight. Music will be provided by “Smitty.” Tickets cost $8 in advance and $ 12 at the door. The Comal County Senior Citizen Y2K World Report Some failures bound to occur/11A Texas-size celebrations planned across state/11 A People welcome New Year with hope, some fear/11 A Your Y2K disaster kit/11 A Y2K computer bugs and how to combat them/11 A Center, 655 Landa Street, will have New Braunfels radio personality Jack Kaufmann as master of ceremonies, Participants can dance to the tunes of yesteryear or enjoy party bridge, bunco and table top games. Black-eyed peas and cornbread will be served. Tickets costs $5 for members and $ 10 for guests. Gruene Hall is expecting more than IOO people for its New Year’s celebration. The Groobees take the stage at 7 p.m. with Joe Ely performing at 9:30 p.m. Free tamales and popcorn will be available as well as special New Year s T-shirts. Both concerts are sold out. Saengerhalle will have Clay Blaker perform at 9 p.m. Tickets are $25 per person and are available at the door. At midnight, guests can toast the New Year with champagne and enjoy black-eyed peas and party favors. The Enlightenment Group of New Braunfels rented New Braunfels Coffee on Main Plaza from 9 p.m. to midnight for a New Year’s celebration. The public is invited to attend. For children ages 5 to 12, J&R Gymnastics, 1437 S. Walnut Ave., is having a New Year’s Eve fun night. Children are to be picked up between 7 and 9 a.m. Saturday. Cost for members is $25 for the first child, $20 for the second and $10 for other siblings. Non-members pay $30 for the first child, $25 for the second and $ 15 for others. SCHEEL ;