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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - February 12, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas New Braunfels WEDNESDAY February 12, 2003 mm14 pages in 2 sectionsHerald-Zeitung Vol, 152, No. 78Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852 50 cents PERRY EAA seeks changes from state legislature By Sean Bowlin Staff Writer Two suggested changes arising from a 2002 Edwards Aquifer Authority election in New Braunfels are among seven proposed amendments the EAA is asking the Texas Legislature to consider in order to fix voting and water GILPIN issues. The EAA cannot fix issues the issues administratively, EAA District 7 Director Doug Miller of New Braunfels said. Since the Legislature created the EAA (in 1993), the issues must be corrected as amendments. The first proposed amendment would establish residency requirements for candidates seeking appointment or election to the authority’s board of directors, and create a process to certify residency of those candidates. “We had a little problem in the last election,” Gregg Ellis, Edwards Aquifer Authority general manager, said. That problem surfaced when Cheryl Gilpin, who did not live in the EAA’s District 8, ran for the District 8 seat and won. She fulfilled the EAA’s residency requirement by moving into District 8 before taking office. Ellis said under the first proposed amendment, a candidate seeking election for a director’s spot would have to five in the district he or she is running from for at least six months. Gilpin said Monday that she thought the amendmentSee EAA/3A Perry outlines strategy to fix budget By Sean Bowlin Staff Writer Saying economic storm clouds “cast a dark shadow over our state,” Texas Governor Rick Perry called for no new taxes, balancing the state budget and governmental adherence to his top three priorities — education, security and fiscal responsibility. “Every „ dollar Texas! spent by govern-_ ment — IE every line-item in the budget — must be analyzed and justified,” Perry said Tuesday in his “State of the State” speech before the Legislature. Perry, in emphasizing fiscal responsibility, asked this year’s legislators to produce a budget “more transparent and easier to understand” than past budgets. With regard to saving money, Perry was specific. He said the government could save taxpayers $1.7 billion by adopting Comptroller Carol Keeton Strayhorn’s e-Texas ideas. Another $500 million could be saved by redirecting Telecommunications Infrastructure Funds to the technology allotment for schools, increasing the per student investment to $35 per student, Perry said. Perry also said that by making better estimates on higher education income, reducing special item projects and asking community colleges to pay K. JESSIE SLATEN/HerakJ-Zeitung Pete Zimmerman and Nancy Bidas take a turn to the tunes of the Seven Dutchmen on the Knights of Columbus dance floor at the Seventh Annual New Braunfels Polka Fest this past year. Polka time! Eighth annual two-day dance event kicks off Saturday By Betty Taylor Herald-Zeitung Correspondent Find those dancing shoes — the serious ones. The Eighth Annual New Braunfels Polka Fest rolls into town for two filii days of polkas, waltzes and yes, even the chicken dance, Saturday and Sunday at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 111 Lands St. ‘We will alternate among eight bands on two days,” said Gordon Zunker. Zunker is with the Cloverleaf Orchestra and also is president of the Polka Band Leaders of New Braunfels. We go from ll a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Saturday and from ll a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Sunday. There are a lot of people there on both days. It is always surprising to us that they are there when we start, and they are there when we quit and dancing all the time in between. I don’t know how they do it. I couldn’t do it, but they do it,” he said. Tickets for the festival are $7.75 in advance or $9 at the door Saturday; $6.75 in advance or $8 at the door Sunday; or $12.50 in advance or $15 at the door for two-day tickets. Advance tickets can be bought at the Greater New Braunfels Chamber of Commerce or at China-n-Things. For information, call 625-9288. Zunker said dancing and a love for music is what the festival is all about. “We play the polkas, waltzes and what I call the old-time music, such as the schottische and the seven-step,” he said. Pearly Sowell thinks the New Braunfels Polka Fest is unique because it also offers the grand march, which often is played at weddings instead of festivals. The lifelong New Braunfels resident and leader of Oma and the Dom paris remembers a time when families would attend dances together. ‘They would bring along a blanket for the kids to he down on while everyone danced,” she said. “We will do the grand march about 5:15 p.m. on Saturday,” she said. ‘Abu know, you don’t have to know how to dance to participate in the Grand See POLKA/7A a proportionate share of their insurance costs, the state could save, and recover, $1.1 billion. Additionally, Perry said he could close the point of collection for the gas tax and save $300 million; close the “Delaware loophole” and generate $400 million; and save $3.8 billion by reducing current appropriations levels by See BUDGET/7A Council members agree on road vote Unanimous decision is a rare occurrence By Ron Maloney Staff Writer Anyone who sees the New Braunfels City Council as mired in a 4-3 split on economic development or infrastructure issues should have been at Monday nights meeting. Early in the meeting came votes of 5-2 and 6-1 that paired Mayor Adam Cork with District 4 Councilmem-ber Robert Kendrick on some issues. But the show-stopper came at the end of the meeting when council voted unanimously to issue nearly $6 million in debt to finance three large street and drain projects believed to qualify for economic development funding. The projects are Gruene Road, the Gruene Road hike and bike trail and the County Line Road extension to Farm-to-Market Road 1044. Bonds for the projects will be issued against sales tax money earmarked for economic development as part of the 4B economic development program. The vote came after more than an hour of motions and discussions about the city’s big-ticket street and drain projects, as well as its other transportation improvement needs. Mayor Adam Cork Tuesday praised council for reaching consensus that will enable the city to begin to move forward on three of its largest street and drain projects. See VOTE/3A Big Buck dinnerCounty wants state money for renovation [ inside K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald-Zeitung Cory Moczygemba takes a close look at one of the prize rifles at Saturday’s Big Buck Contest dinner. Both Cory and his brother, Clay, were winners in the annual essay contest. The fifth annual Big Buck event drew 363 entries, and Saturday’s dinner served more than 400. Sandy Nolte, president of the board of directors, said officials are still counting the money raised. By Ron Maloney Staff Writer Comal County wants to renovate its historic courthouse and is looking for state help to make it happen. Thursday, commissioners will hear a presentation on the Texas Historic Courthouse Preservation Program. Commissioners’ Court is conducted at 8:15 a.m. in the commissioners’ courtroom, Commissioners’ Court Building, 199 Main Plaza. County Judge Danny Seheel said this would be the third round of state grants for courthouse renovation or preservation. The county’s historic courthouse needs quite a bit of work — particularly in cli mate control and renovation to the County Court-at-law facilities, Scheel said. “We need a lot of work done. The air conditioning is out; the heating system is out and they can’t really control it,” Scheel said. “It takes several hours when you have to change from air to heat so a lot of time it is without air and without heat.” Comal County sat out the first two rounds of grants, Scheel said, in favor of counties that have older courthouses that had more pressing preservation needs. “Most of the ones I think should have been ahead of us in priority have been funded by now, so I think we would have a pretty good See RENOVATION/7 AOther Action Commissioners’ Court Thursday agenda includes: ■ Review and acceptance of a proposed easement for Canyon Lake Hills Number 2 boat ramp; ■ Review and acceptance of an agreement with the Bulverde Youth Soccer Association for Jumbo Evans Sports Park; ■ Review and approval of the private access street-name assignment for Hueco Ridge; ■ Proclamation supporting the Sons of the Republic of Texas and the Daughters of the Republic of Texas in promoting Texas Independence Day; and ■ Proclamation recognizing George Washington’s birthday. 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