New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 31, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas
Page 2A — Herald-Zeitung — Saturday, December 31, 2005EMERGENCY
CONTINUED FROM Page 1AOther counties also ban firworks
by a fine of up to $500.
Waldrip said Comal County Sheriff’s Department deputies and the county Fire Marshal Lin Manford will be passing the word along to local firework vendors, who stand to lose a lot of money during the weekend.
Several Texas counties, including Hays to the north, also have banned the use of fireworks and combustibles. In Comal County, this ruling does not affect blasting in rock quarries.
Gov. Rick Perry declared a state of disaster for all Texas counties earlier this week, following several large fires near the Oklahoma border.
Although many of the recent wildfires have occurred on fladand, Manford said the Hill Country is far from safe. Comal County’s juniper tree population creates a specific threat for firefighters, as fire can spread to the branches of the dry trees, he said.
“It’s called a crowning effect,” Manford said. “Fire can race across the trees while also burning on the ground below.”
Mike Dunivan, a fire behavior analyst with the Texas Forest Service, said several factors have contributed to high fire alert this weekend.
Vegetation is parched, and the weather is predicted to be dry and windy. More people are usually home on the weekends, which means more opportunities for careless use of outdoor fires. This weekend is also a holiday that centers around firework use.
“Any one of these factors heightens the increased risk of wildfires,” Dunivan said. “Having all four come together at one time creates a potential nightmare situation for wildland firefighters.”
While Perry’s disaster declaration allowed additional firefighting resources to be mobilized to the state, officials say maximum public cooperation is necessary to avoid a repeat of fire losses such as those that occurred Tuesday in the West Texas town of Cross Plains, where two people were killed and more than 90 homes were destroyed.
Overall, four people have been killed in Texas wildfires in recent days.
According to the Texas Forest Service, careless brush burning has caused the majority of recent wildfires, but many others have been caused by the use of welding and grinding equipment near dry grass and weeds, careless use of fireworks and improper disposal of smoking materials.
Fire officials think the Christmas Eve fire in New Braunfels was started by dry vegetation touching an electric fence.
Manford said many farmers and ranchers use an effective method to slow the spread of fire. They dig a ditch around the perimeter of their properties to stop fire from coming onto their land.
However, fighting fires with a garden hose is not always a good idea. Manford said residents should be very careful when protecting their homes without professional help.
“Human safety is the number one priority,” he said. “You can replace possessions, but you can’t replace human life.”
Tips to prevent wildfires from damaging your home:
■ Keep a buffer zone, or defensible space, around your home of at least 30 feet. This defensible space is created by clearing flammable materials away from your home and outbuildings. Defensible space not only helps protect your home in the critical minutes it takes a fire to pass, but it also gives firefighters an area to work in. During a large-scale fire, firefighters must focus on homes they can safely defend.
■ Landscape around your home with fire resistant material and plants. A green lawn or rock garden is a good fuel break. Stone, brick or masonry walls, free of vegetation, are good fire barriers. Ask a representative from a home and garden center about which varieties of plants possess fire resistant traits that can be used in your home's landscaping. Some examples of fire resistant ground covers are lily-of-the-valley, periwinkle, bugleweed and Japanese spurge.
■Trees within the 30 foot defensible space should have all branches removed up to a height of about 7 feet. Keep trees pruned, and space them so their crowns are at least 10 or more feet apart.
■ Keep your grass well-watered and cut low, especially during times of high fire danger.
■ Store items that could easily catch fire at least 30 feet away from any structure. These items include stacks of firewood, brush piles and other flammable materials.
■ Keep your roof, rain gutters and yard clear of pine needles, leaves and other yard debris. A single spark in dried materials such as these can start a serious fire.
■ Make sure your home is accessible to emergency vehicles. Your address should be easily identifiable from the road. Driveways should be wide enough for fire vehicles and clear of low, overhanging branches that also could impede access.
■ Recycle your yard waste through mulching and composting. Don't burn it.
■ Keep firefighting equipment such as fire extinguishers handy. Have a family emergency plan and practice it.
■ Report fire immediately by calling 911.
Source: Midland County Emergency Management Department.Strayhorn to reveal her political plans Monday.
AUSTIN (AP) — Republican Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn plans to make it official Monday that she’s running for governor, but whether she’ll be a candidate in the 2006 GOP primary is the lingering question.
“Carole Keeton Strayhorn is a candidate for governor. She is a Republican. She will file for the office of governor on Monday,” her spokesman Mark Sanders said Friday.
But when asked whether Strayhorn—who calls herself “one tough grandma” — will make a run for governor as an independent instead of as a Republican, Sanders declined to say.
Republican Gov. Rick Perry'sMARQUEE
CONTINUED FROM Page 1ADowntown showing signs of progress
party room and drive-through service. For Granzin’s purists, the walkup window also will be returning.
Restaurant owner Miles Granzin said he hoped to start work on the new building in January and have it finished before summer tourists flock to town.
“It’s exciting to see all the new things going on up and down the street,” he said. “I’m looking forward to seeing how everything progresses.”
Main Street Manager Jan Soechting said all three projects would pump significant energy into the entire area.
“We’re looking for really great things. I just know 2006 is going to be a fantastic year for New Braunfels,” she said.
campaign was more verbose.
“If Carole Strayhorn leaves the GOP it will represent the latest desperate act of a politician who has no core convictions or guiding principles. Political opportunism will have motivated Carole Strayhorn to abandon two parties and two sets of principles all in the name of furthering her own political ambition,” spokesman Robert Black said in a prepared statement.
Both Strayhorn and Perry are former Democrats.
Lately Perry’s campaign has been trying to portray the governor as a true Republican who has the support of the party's base and Strayhorn as a pseudo-Republican supported by
Democrats and trial lawyers. Perry’s campaign also has reported hearing several times that Strayhorn is considering a run as an independent.
The Republican primary is March 7.
If a candidate succeeds in getting on the Texas ballot as an independent, he or she would have no primary and would be up for election in the November general election.
Strayhorn, elected the state’s first woman comptroller in 1998, announced last summer that she would challenge Perry for governor. That came about the same time that U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison decided she wouldn’t run in the GOP gubernatorial primary.
The marquee at the BrauntexTheatre is just one of the signs that Downtown New Braunfels is coming back.
GEAR STOP J
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Matters of Public Record
The following individuals were arrested by Comal County law enforcement agencies between Dec. 29 and Dec. 30:
Steve Joseph Anzalone, 26, Canyon Lake, violation of promise to appear/possession of less than 28 grams of a controlled substance, penalty group 3; violation of promise to appear/theft of property between $50 and $500.
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Classified advertising, call 625-9144, ext. 215; display advertising, call 625-9144, ext. 208; obituaries, weddings, engagement, anniversaries, call 625-9144, ext. 213.
Gerald Castilleja, 21, New Braunfels, public intoxication.
Uvaldo Faustino Collazo Jr., 20, New Braunfels, public intoxication.
Morgan Wayne Crocker, 23, Austin, violation of promise to appear/possession of less than 28 grams of a controlled substance, penalty
Andreas Peter Fiel, 40, San Antonio, theft of service between $20 and $500.
42, San Antonio, speeding;
failure to appear. _
Stephen Lee Smith, 35, Canyon Lake, public intoxication. _____
Jessie Lin Teague, 23, Pasadena, violation of promise to appear/possession of more than 2 ounces of marijuana.
David Wayne Flugrath, 50, New Braunfels, theft of property between $500 and $1,500.
Rose Marie Gonzales, 37, New Braunfels, failure to appear/contempt of court. Brian Don Horn, 25, Austin, possession of between 2 and 4 ounces of marijuana. Christopher Jay Kanetzky, 27, Austin, possession of between 2 and 4 ounces of
Luis Abraham Vargas, 24, New Braunfels, motion to proceed with
adjudication/assault causing bodily injury family violence. John Kelly Whitfield, 41, motion to revoke probation/ driving while intoxicated; motion to revoke probation/ driving while license invalid; theft by chock between $20 and $500; no drivers license; no liability insurance; failure to appear/no drivers license; failure to appear/no liability insurance.
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New Year’s Eve Dance
Dec. 31st, 8:30 pm to 12:30am • New Braunfels Civic Cenfer Tickets are $20/person, $40/couple Music by The Little Fisherman Orchestra Sponsored by The Starlite Dance Club For tickets and information call
Chamber of Commerce
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new office will be open effective January 3rd, 2006
652 N. Houston, #2 New Braunfels, Texas 78130 Phone (830) 625-0009
The office will be closed from December 26-30th for the move.
If you have appointments scheduled, please call ahead for directions. Thank you for understanding during this change, 2
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