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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - July 11, 2001, New Braunfels, Texas New Braunfels WEDNESDAY July ll, 2001 14 pages in 2 sections ^ pages in 2 sectnHerald-Zeitung Vol. 150, No. 207 :  ............ Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852 SO cents Annexation debate hits the airwaves By Amy Clarkson Staff Writer When New Braunfels City Council conducts the first public hearing on annexation today, the event will be televised, City Manager Mike Shands announced at Monday’s council meeting. The city also plans to have televisions and speakers set up in conference rooms to accommodate overflow crowds expected to attend the public hearing, which starts at 6:30 p.m. The hearing can be viewed on cable channel 21. The move to televise the hearing comes after the city decided to conduct the meeting in council chambers instead of at the New Braunfels Civic Center, which was booked, Shands said. The meeting is open to the public. Under state law, the city can annex any area at will, as long as it follows the proper procedure. The city must conduct two public hearings. The first is set for today and the second for July 18. The first reading of the ordinance will be Aug. 13.What’s Up:- WHAT: Annexation hearing WHERE: New Braunfels council chamber, 424 S. Casten Ave., shown on cable channel 21 WHEN: 6:30 p.m. today The areas proposed for annexation from the 2000 list are: • T Bar M/Mission Valley Road; • Hunters Creek; • Northwoods; • Common Street/Orion Drive; • Alves Lane/Barbarosa Road; • Stonegate; • Southbank; • Klein Road and FM 1044 • Schmucks Road/Engel Road; • Preiss Heights, off Loop 337 near River Road; • Shadow Hills, off FM 1863 south of Mission Valley Estates; and • the area that includes the McAlister Ranch off Texas 46 South. Fire chief finalist for post in Killeen By Amy Clarkson Staff Writer New Braunfels Fire Chief Jack Collier is one of four finalists for the same position in Killeen. But that does not mean that he has immediate plans to leave New Braunfels, Collier said. “The only reason I would even think about leaving New Braunfels is that area is home for myself and my wife,” he said. “Our families are there; we have lifelong friends there.” Killeen is northwest of Austin in central Texas and, with about 86,000, has twice the population of New Braunfels, Collier said. “It is a bigger department,” he said. "And the salary is attractive, but by no means does it mean that it is a done deal. Even if they do offer it to me, there are several agreements we would have to reach before I accepted it.” Collier, who has been fire chief in New Braunfels for nearly three years, applied for the position to be closer to family, City Manager Mike Shands said. “When he told me he applied and was thinking about leaving, I asked him ‘Why Killeen?’” Shands said. “And he said it was home.” Shands said Collier probably would be paid more in Killeen. He earns $67,415 here. Killeen city officials said the fire chief position had been vacant since March. The position pays just less than $80,000. Colher was named one of the four finalists in June, according to the Killeen Daily Herald. The city has not yet hired anyone, Collier said. “They said in June it would be about a month,” he said. “But I haven’t heard anything yet. Their fiscal year starts in October, so they are in the middle of working out a budget.” Collier said he had not resigned and did not have plans to resign in the near future. Until he hears from the officials in Killeen, it’s business as usual in the New Braunfels Fire Department. “I’m not going to abandon ship,” he said. “I plan to be here, working on things in the fire department for some See CHIEF/4A Man drowns in Canyon Lake 60-year-old wasn’t wearing life jacket when thrown from boat By Ron Maloney Staff Writer CANYON LAKE — A 60-year-old Live Oak man drowned in a boating accident Tuesday morning. Pct. 4 Justice of the Peace Howard Smith pronounced Joe Garza dead at 9:45 a.m. at the Cranes Mill Marina. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Lake Manager Jerry Brite said Garza and his friend, Frank Billman, 61, of Louisiana, were thrown into Canyon Lake about 8 a.m. when Garza made a sharp turn in his bass boat off Potters Creek Park on the lake’s north side. “What I’m understanding is Mr. Garza’s boat was headed west and made evasive action around a buoy and rock. They were out of balance and thrown out of the boat,” Brite said. Comal County Sheriff’s Cpl. Clay Garland said the kind of boat Garza was piloting had very quick-responding controls. “We’ll never know what caused him to jerk that stick, because he can’t tell us,” Garland said. Mike and Nick Stewart of San Antonio were riding a personal watercraft in the area when they saw an object jutting above the surface of the water. They rode toward it. Before they got there, they saw Billman holding onto a marker buoy, waving. As they pulled up to him, they heard him yelling. A short distance off, the Stewart brothers could see what looked like the shoulders and the back of a CHRIS PACE/Herald-Zeitung Sheriff’s deputies and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers rangers survey the bass boat from which Joe Garza, 60, of Live Oak, fell and drowned in Canyon Lake. Garza was not wearing a life jacket at the time of the accident. man’s head floating in the water. They picked up Billman and rode over to where Garza was floating. Nick jumped off the watercraft and checked for Garza’s pulse. He found none. Supported by his life jacket, he swam behind Garza and tried to clear Garza’s lungs using Heimlich-like chest compressions. Meanwhile, Mike and Billman took off on the watercraft for Cranes Mill Marina to seek help. The marina was closed, but they saw a nearby home, and Mike told Billman to go there and call 911. Mike went back toward his brother, who was treading water across the lake with Garza. When Mike rejoined his brother, he helped Nick up onto the watercraft, and they towed Garza toward the nearby boat and hauled him aboard. When Canyon Lake Fire/EMS got the call about 8:30 a.m. reporting a drowning, dispatch told them Garza had been facedown in the water for 20 minutes. As firefighter/paramedics arrived, the Stewarts were bringing Garza across the lake in his own boat. Firefighters took Garza from the boat onto the dock, where they tried lifesaving measures. Those efforts continued for more than half an hour after they loaded Garza into a Canyon Lake Fire/EMS ambulance. Fire Chief Shawn Wherry said, “He was essentially flatlined when we got to him.” The boat had only one floatation cushion and no fitted life jackets. While life jackets aren’t required for adults, children 12 and younger are required to wear them, Brite said. K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald-ZeitungCause of brush fires unknown Bracken firefighter Craig Ackerman hoses down one of four brush fires off Farm-to-Market Road 1863 in Bulverde. Comal County Fire Marshal Un Manford said he did not know the cause of the fire. “It looks suspicious, but it’s a heavily traveled road. There are a lot of things that could have started it,” he said. “We’re fixing to get into that season. People need to be aware of what’s going on.” City postpones action on Parks Master Plan By Amy Clarkson Staff Writer Citing too many mistakes and not enough information, the New Braunfels City Council delayed adopting the Parks Master Plan during their meeting Monday night. After a brief presentation by Lloyd Lentz, project manager for Carter and Burgess, the consulting firm hired to create the master plan; council members asked questions and raised concerns about the comprehensive plan. “I think there are too many mistakes, things incorrectly marked on the maps,” Councilman Robert Kendrick said. “It concerns me a great deal that if we adopt this, with this many mistakes, we are doing a disservice to the public. I think we need to take another look at the maps and their designations. They need to be coordinated and corrected.” Lentz assured Kendrick that any necessary corrections to the plan would be made before the next council meeting. The council will take action to adopt the plan at its June 23 meeting. The master plan is the result of a yearlong process that included more than ll public meetings, a telephone survey and an in-depth analysis of both current facilities and future needs, he said. “This is a living document,” Lentz said. “It is not a static plan. It won’t be the same this time next year as it is today. It will change as things happen; the plan evolves. I Uke to think of this as a road map — a business plan.” See PARK/5AInside Abby................................5A Classifieds.......................4-6B Comics..............................2B Crossword........................5A Forum.................................6A Local/Metro........................4A Movies.................................5A Obituaries...........................3A Sports............................7-8A Today.................................2A Key Code 76 Lend an ear for benefit concert; lend a helping hand for area’s hungry By Dale Martin Herald-Zeitung Correspondent New Braunfels’ favorite honky-tonk hero, Clay Blaker, joins newcomer Cory Morrow for a special Thursday night Concert in the Park. The 7:30 p.m. concert at the Landa Park Dance Slab will be performed in conjunction with a food drive for the SOS Food Bank in New Braunfels. The food bank gives to the needy in the city and Comal County. Admission to Thursday’s show is free to everyone bringing a non-perishable food item. Blaker got the idea from Emmylou Harris several years ago while on a Nashville trip. He was in the Music City on a songwriting trip and happened to be driving around one night in search of some live music. A local radio disc jockey announced Harris was giving a free concert that night and anyone bringing food for the local food bank could see the show for free. Blaker pulled into a 711, bought a few cans of food and headed to the See CONCERT/3A American musician Clay Blaker gets an overview of SOS operations from Betty Drawe earty Tuesday. K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald- Zeitung ;