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New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung (Newspaper) - January 18, 2000, New Braunfels, Texas NEW PELS HER ALDZEI i U NG Vol 149 No 43 14 pages in 2 sections January 18 2000 Serving Comal County since 1852 50 cents Duke honored Astronaut and retired USAF Brigadier General Charles Duke was inducted into the Texas Science Hall of Fame Monday night A twoday conference in San Antonio the Texas Science Summit 2000 featured politicians educators and scientists from all over the country K JESSIE TUESDAY Astronaut Duke honored FROM HEATHER TODD Staff Writer SAN ANTONIO State and local educational leaders gathered here Mon day night to honor 16 of the states bright est stars in science including a New Braunfels resident who once traveled through space Retired Air Force Brig Gen Charles Duke Jr was honored for his scientific achievements as a former NASA astro naut during the Texas Science Summit 2000 at the Adams Mark hotel Duke and 15 fellow Texans includ ing three other astronauts and two renowned heart surgeons were inducted as charter members of the Texas Sci ence Hall of Fame during a banquet Another New Braunfels resident USMC Sgt Maj David Sommers presented the award to Duke Its a great Duke said I hope the Texas Science Hall of Fame and those of us who were inducted will set a real example for young people I think its important that we encour age science and mathematics education among our young children and students as they plan for the future and look Duke said See Commercial makeover The face of downtown changing with closings moves K JESSIE Above Donna Fest found Country Faire more than a year ago and drives in from Converse to shop but now she only has one store to browse The two Country Faire stores 230 and 270 W San Antonio consolidated and moved all merchandise to 270 W San Antonio St earlier this month Below Angels and Inspirations 204 W San Antonio will close Wednesday BY PERI STONEPALMQUIST Staff Writer Downtown New Braunfels is changing at a dizzying rate stores are consolidating clos ing moving down the street and outoftown and property owners are eyeing new tenants Its all happening at Main Street director Lynn Fountain said Only time will tell whether the changes are signaling a downward economic swing she said All we can do is watch and keep people she said But I think its just a blip an exception I think this is just unusually high And some turnover hi retail is normal she said The reasons for the changes are pretty varied some eco nomic some personal Angels and Inspirations Don and LaDonna Kruppa who own Angels and Inspira tions 204 W San Antonio said they decided to close to See NBISD mulls traffic safety improvements BY HEATHER TODD Staff Writer Safety improvements in front of New Braunfels High School on Loop 337 could be approved when New Braunfels school trustees meet Tuesday Trustees will also consider extending Super intendent Ron Reaves contract with the district when they meet 7 today at the Education Center 430 W REAVES Mill St A district traf fic committee comprised of school officials parents patrons teachers and administrators is recommend ing trustees approve proposed traffic improvements developed by the Texas Transportation Institute for traffic control at the high school 255 IN Loop 337 The recommendations include a traffic light increased signage pave ment upgrades and the rerouting of traffic patterns at New Braunfels High Reaves said The Texas Department of Trans portation and the Texas Transporta tion Institute initiated a traffic study of Loop 337 at the high school and outlined a threephase plan to enhance traffic safety at a Dec 14 board meeting TxDOT agreed to conduct a traf fic study on Loop 337 in front of the high school in response to public outcry for a traffic signal light after a fatal accident in front of the school in October Shelby Farnsworth 16 and Fer nando Diaz 15 were killed Oct 9 when their car was struck by a quar ter ton pickup on Loop 337 in front ofNBHS The committees recommenda tions include Driveway No 1 next to baseball field Driveway can be entered MEETING WHO New Braunfels Independent School District WHAT Board of trustees meeting WHEN 7 today at the Education Center 430 W Mill St WHY To approve pro posed improvements to Loop in frant of Newr Braurifelsfc High School authorize the sale of million in bonds and con sider extending superinten dents contract Graphic detailing traffic safety Hearing slated on Academic Excellence Indicator System from both directions but exit will be for school buses only An automatic arm will be installed to control exit for buses only Entrance only from driveway into adjacent parking area posts and railing will be installed to keep traffic from entering Loop 337 from parking area Driveway No 2 main entrance to school Entrance only drive way from both directions no exits Driveway No 3 next to Gruene Wood Villa Apartments Traffic light installed along with sensors under the pavement to control lights Adjacent apartment complex dri veway will become right turn turn out only Property owners of Gruene Wood Villa Apartments have agreed to work with NBISD on making the necessary upgrades Greg Malatek area engineer for the New Braunfels TxDOT office said some upgrades already were See SVMS reviews crisis management BY ERIN MAGRUDER Staff Writer While local students enjoyed a beau tiful day off for the Martin Luther King holiday faculty and staff at Smithson Valley Middle School spent Monday reviewing crisis management proce dures in the wake of Thursdays bomb scare The faculty and staff reviewed the bomb threat event and the districts crisis management to do before during or after a said Kari Hutchison CISD public informa tion officer Faculty and staff are debriefed on the crisis management system at least once a year and also after any crisis at the school occurs she said Hutchison said faculty and staff have had their eyes and ears open after Thurs days bomb threat at the school on Farm toMarket Road 311 There is definitely a heightened sense of awareness on campus she said The bomb threat at SVMS came just three days after a pipe bomb was found at Blanco High School No one was injured and the bomb was safely deto nated near the school Four students were arrested Jan U in connection with the bombing INSIDE Key Qode 76 Closing arguments presented in Lockhart murder trial BY HEATHER TODD Staff Writer A Comal County jury began deliberations Monday in the last of three murder trials in connection with the fatal shooting of Lockhart resident Henry P Silva in 1998 A sixman sixwoman jury heard closing arguments Monday afternoon after a week of testimony in the murder trial of 21year old Carlos Cantu also of Lockhart Cantu is charged with firstdegree murder and two counts of aggravated assault in nection with the shooting of 21year old Silva during a confrontation between two alleged gangs Feb in north Lockhart If convicted on the murder charge Cantu could face up to 99 years or life in prison Aggravated assault is a seconddegree felony If convicted Cantu could face two to 20 years in prison Jurors could also convict Cantu on the lesser charge of deadly conduct which is a degree felony See A ;