New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - July 27, 2004, New Braunfels, Texas
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Area track club runners qualify for the the Amateur Athletic Union National track meet in Des Moines, Iowa. Page BA
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Guest columnist Betty Clifford writes about how Ivins' column on Clinton's book is full of contradictions. Page AA
Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852.
Vol. 153, No. 220 10 pages, 1 section
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DEAR ABBY 8A CLASSIFIEDS EWA COMICS 7A CROSSWORD 7A FORUM 4A OBITUARIES 3A SPORTS SA TV GRIDS BAQty to donate fairgrounds to association
By Scott Mahon
New Braunfels’ Mayor Adam Cork won a majority vote from council Monday to donate the Comal County fairgrounds property to the Comal County Fair Association.
The 4-3 vote in favor of donating the 30-acre parcel provided that the land would be donated
with restrictions, and only after the Nov. 2 election to designate the tract a city park.
More than 200 members of the association voted unanimously last month to oppose District 6 Qty Councilman Ken Valentine's petition to designate the fairgrounds as a city park.
District 3 Councilwoman Gale Pospisil, who voted against the proposal, said although she
wanted the association to continue using the property for the annual county fair, she wouldn’t support giving the parcel away.
“Not one person in my district that I talked to wanted to Adam Cork give the property to the association,” she said.
District 4 Councilwoman Valerie Hull also voted against donating the property.
“How did we get to this point?" she asked. “The fair association does wonderful things, but we don't have to change the ownership of the property.” Valentine also voted against
Some council members argued that the property should be appraised before donating it
“I don’t want to make an emotional decision,” Hull said. “I want the appraisal. We can always lease the property to the fair association lite we’ve always done But just because the association is all of a sudden unhappy about this, I can’t support
donate the land to them.”
A motion to indefinitely postpone donating the property was voted down 4-3.
Council voted 6-1 to put Valentine’s petition to designate the property a city park on the November ballot; however, Qty Attorney Charlie Zech argued that the petition could be challenged because the language of the petition was invalid.
Low water crossing
Tourists and motorists squeeze past each other on the Gruene bridge over the Guadalupe River.
Discussions on replacing Gruene River bridge leave residents optimistic for compromise
By Scott Mahon
After meeting with TxDOT officials to discuss the Gruene River bridge, most of those for and opposed to replacing the lcw-water bridge seemed hopeful that a compromise would be worked out.
Plans to replace the bridge have been in the works since 1998.
Tile narrow, two-lane bridge often is closed for weeks when the Guadalupe River flows above 3,000 cubic feet-per-second.
Rafters and tubers have become trapped or injured underneath the bridge, not to mention the vehicle and pedestrian traffic that gets dogged trying to cross the bridge.
The dty dedded to replace the bridge during Jan Kennady’s term as mayor.
“It's been on the back burner though since then," she said. “There have been people opposed to replacing the bridge, but I’m encouraged things are
In 1997, TxDOT ranked the bridge as a priority reconstruction project. Historians attempted to prevent replacing the bridge by having it designated a historical bridge, but the Texas Historic Commission in 1997 voted 4-3 not to designate the structure a historic bridge.
Those opposed to replacing the bridge said the bridge preserved the “small-town atmosphere” of Gruene.
“I don’t want to sound overly optimistic, but after Thursday's meeting, I got the feeling there may be a way to please everybody who had an interest in the bridge, ’ said Robert West, whose father, Don West, owns property adjacent to the bridge. “A number of us Iiad reservations before the meeting, but TxDOT had some very talented and creative people there talking about designs for a new bridge.”
West said those opposed to replacing the bridge
were mostly concerned that a new, higher bridge with guardrails would block the scenic view of the river and surrounding landscape.
“The concern is about what you see from the bridge, not the bridge itself,” he said “My father especially was concerned that guardrails would block the view, but I think the TxDOT engineers were trying to come up with something that would work."
Mayor Adam Cork said he was pleased with the ideas presented by TxDOT engineers.
“They did a good job,” he said “The meeting allowed people to voice their concerns, and the ideas TxDOT presented were outstanding. I think they want a new bridge to look like an old bridge, and they said they’d have some designs to look at in six to eight weeks.”
Greg Malatek TxDOT area engineer, said reconstruction of the bridge would cost $1 million.
See BRUME Page 2A
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A I R O ti Al (TY
The Texas Commission on Environmental Qualify and the Alamo Area Council of Governments has declar ed today an Air Quality Health Alert Day.
H Reduce unnecessary vehicle driving.
■ Carpool if possible or combine all errands into one trip.
H Avoid use of ‘drive through lanes or services.
R Don’t refuel during daylight.
H Avoid use of gas-powered yard equipment.
H Avoid exterior painting.
Kid’s Fishing Day teaches important life lessons
Pollution levels are posted online at: www.tnrcc.state.tx.us/
By Ron Maloney
David Minchew is a guy who really, truly understands what is important in fife.
That’s why Saturday he and his sons, Ethan, 3-1/2, and Owen, 14 months, went fishing at H-E-B's Kid's Fishing Day.
The Minchews were among hundreds of parents and children who took a shot at catching—and then releasing—a catfish in a little “pond” set up on the H-E-B lot by All Outdoor Kids.
The firm puts on fishing events around Texas to introduce children to fishing and the outdoors lifestyle.
“We like to promote fishing and other outdoor events for children,” said lason Flournoy of All Outdoor Kids. “Some of these kids—especially as you get doser to cities—have never seen a live fish in their
lives, much less catch one.”
H-E-B Deli Manager Dwayne Keller said the chain sponsors the fishing events at many of its locations.
“It gives the kids a chance to learn a little bit about fishing,” Keller said “For many, it's probably the Brat opportunity they'll have to catch a fish.”
Saturday, children could also see fishing boats brought to the show by a local business and learn about boating saf ety from Texas Parks and Wildlife while they listened to music or ate snacks provided by H-E-B.
“I think this is a great deal and I’m proud to be a part of it,” Keller said Minchew thought it was a great deal, ton He moved his family from Round Rock to New Braunfels about a month ago to live in a home on the Comal River.
See PISH, Page 3A
David Minchew, along with sons Ethan (left), and Owen try to catch a fish.
CHS to test new dress code during school year
By Ron Maloney
BULVERDE—Comal Independent School District trustees tonight will deride whether to replace resigning school board President Dora Gonzales or call a special election.
Trustees will also consider a proposed district dress code change that will no longer allow graphic designs on clothes for Canyon High School students—with the exception of school-related designs or logos of recognized universities.
The CI SD board meets at 6 p.m. at Bulverde Elementary School, 1715 E Arnmann Road in Bulverde.
The dress code change was approved by the board in May for both high schools, bul notifications didn’t go to Smithson Valley High School parents, so the district is seeking to make the change apply only to CHS students this fall.
District spokeswoman Kart Hutchison said CHS would be a pilot program — and the
See CASO Page 3A
ON THE WEB
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5 inches of rain, lightning cause minor problems
By Ron Maionoy
Sunday evening’s rainstorm dumped more than five inches of water on parts of New Braunfels.
A transformer along Interstate 35 was struck by lighuiing, dropping a power line across the interstate at about 7:30 p.m. that stopped traffic until the line could be cut, but public safety officials reported little serious trouble.
New Braunfels Fire Department Battalion Chief Steve Mabe reported traffic delays caused by the downed power line in the 1500 block of Interstate 35 north, but no big problems from a public safety standpoint
“They just said they were busy while it was raining, but then we always are,” Mabe said
Most calls pertained to fire or burglary alarms, which are often set off in severe storms.
It was much different, though, for New Braunfels Utilities. Communications Man, ager GretchenReuwer reported more than 500 calls for power outages lasting from 20
Sue WEATHER Page 2A