New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 1, 1995, New Braunfels, Texas
Yankees win local Little League title — Page 5.
The Landa Park train
3 Pages in one section R Thursday, June 1.1995
Serving Comal County for more than 143 years ■ Home of CONSUELO VILLARREAL
MOI6 10/22/99 SO-WEST MI CROF'UBL I SH 3: NG e: YANDELL DR
PASO, TX 7990::-
Vol 143, No 144Inside
Birthday wishes from the Herald-Zeitung!
The New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung extends birthday wishes to: Matthew Sultemeier (Happy 13th), Consuelo Villarreal, Angelina Valdez, Gloria R. Gomez and Lupe Caballero. Happy 56th anniversary to Mr. and Mrs. Alton Wuest.Lane closed on Landa Street
Landa Street, underneath the Missouri-Kansas-Texas (MKT) railroad, will be reduced to one ane of traffic on May 31, June 1 and June 2.
Texas Department of Transportation will be drilling test holes to check soil foundation for a new bridge at that location. Road workers and a flag man will be present to direct traffic through the area.
Expected hours of closure are 8 a m. to 5 p.m. Texas Department of Transportation urges citizens to use caution when in the area.Danes recital at high school is free
The New Braunfels Hermann Sons School of Dance will present its annual dance recital Sunday, June 4. The theme this year is Stairway to the Stars, featuring 454 students under the direction of dance instructor Bobbi Ray and assistant, Melissa Bird. The students will perform various jazz, tap and ballet routines.
There will be two performances, the matinee at 3 p.m. and the everting performance at 7 p.m. The recital will be held at the New Braunfels High School auditorium and admission is free.Fire Department Auxiliary to meet
New Braunfels Fire Department Auxiliary will hold its business and social meeting at Fire Station #2 on Loop 337 at 7 p.m. on Monday, June 5.American Legion to meet
American Legion Comal Post # 179 meets Thursday, June 1, at 410 West Coll St. The executive committee meets at 7 p.m. and the regular meeting starts at 8 p.m. Unit #179 Auxiliary meets at 7.30 p.m. Election will be held.Hermann Sons gather
New Braunfels Hermann Sons Lodge #21 will meet for its regular meeting June 4 at 3 p.m. Meat will be furnished, members bring covered dishes.Mission Valley FACE to meet
Mission Valley Family and Community Education Club meeting will be held June 6 at the Extension meeting room.Eagles Auxiliary meets
The Eagles Auxiliary meets I June 6 at 7:30 p.m. Officers! meet at 7 p.m.
The winning numbers
S5S million jackpot
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Three local volunteers give more than 1,700 hours of their time to Head Start
New aquifer law seen as a victory for New Braunfels
By SUSAN FLYNT ENGLAND
New Braunfels Head Start got a major head start from Lidia Esquivel, Nicole Gonzales and Rose Ann Rubio this year. These three top volunteers have given a total of 1,719 hours to children in the Comal County Head Start Program.
Esquivel gave 635 hours to Head Start since last September. “My mother had passed away in August,” she said. “Coming over here helped me to not be lonely.”
‘Vie are in a lot of danger of losing our federal grants. That's why we’re pushing the parents to become more involved.’
— Nicole Gonzales
She helps in the three- and four-year-old class her daughter attends. Having Mom in the classroom took a little adjustment. “At first she used to cry a lot and she always wanted to be with me,” Esquivel said. “Now she doesn’t even know I’m here.”
Play time is learning time in disguise at Head Start, Esquivel said. When children misbehave they are disciplined with “time out.” “They don’t play for about two minutes,” she said. “They make them apologize if they fight, apologize to the other little person.”
Esquivel has no favorites in the class; she distributes love equally. “All of them are attractive to me," she said.
Nicole Gonzales volunteers at Head Start for her children’s sake, but the program has helped her grow as well. She volunteered 548 hours at two of the four Comal County Head Start sites. “I have two children in the program, one at each site,” she said. Gonzales also has a child in first grade.
Head Start works for the whole family, Gonzales said. One of her children was bom with a birth defect and one other has asthma as well as attention deficit disorder. “With
By DENISE DZIUK
Herald-Zeitung photo by MICHAEL DARNALL
Lidia Esquivel helps a Head Start student work on a puzzle.
them, I’ve learned more about the disabilities,” she said.
Gonzales plans to work for Head Start when her children are all in school. “They’ve provided me funding for my G.E.D.,” she said.
Gonzales co-chairs the Head Start parent and policy council activities. Parents raise funds for Head Start programs, especially the children’s year-end field trip. “We encourage the parents to get involved IOO percent,” she said.
Gonzales has as many success stories as children in the classes she assists. One child who spoke only Spanish enrolled in January. “By the end of February that child was IOO percent different,” she said. “He now
understands English and can speak English when he wants to.”
Being an involved Head Start parent has made Gonzales an activist. “We are in a lot of danger of losing our federal grants,” she said. “That’s why we’re pushing the parents to become more involved.”
Head Start’s next goal is to build a bigger center. “We’re just running out of space; we don’t have enough room for our children,” Gonzales said. The New Braunfels community has come through so far for the Comal County Head Start. “We’ve come up with things from sources you wouldn’t believe,” she said, “This has really given me faith in the community.”
NBU power line construction stirs up neighbor
By SUSAN FLYNT ENGLAND
Property owner beware — when it comes to easements and right of way. That’s what Ben Jones learned when he went to the New Braunfels Utilities board of directors meeting last Thursday.
Jones had a contract to purchase property on Hunter Road when he brought his concerns to the NBU Board. NBU is building power lines along Hunter Road in front of the property he had on contract. The lines will send power to Colorado Materials, a heavy industrial user nearby.
“Not I nor any of my neighbors were notified that these lines would be built,” Jones said.
“This is normal procedure; we followed normal procedure,” NBU President E. C. Momhinweg said.
NBU got permission to enter the Hunter Road property during construction, Roger Biggers of NBU said. But the permission was given by the actual property owner, not Jones, he said.
NBU has no legal obligation to notify those property owners of heavy construction next to their homes. The power lines are located in the “right of way.”
Right of way is land the city owns including the street and the strips of land on either side, City Manager
Mike Shands said. Right of way is there as a place for utilities, cable companies, etc. to run their lines. Often homeowners don’t know where their property ends and right of way begins. They build mailboxes, even fences without knowing it’s technically not their land.
The city or the utility company has absolutely no legal obligation to ask homeowners’ consent or even notify them if it plans to build in the right of way in front of their homes.
Property owners often don’t know what an easement is, either, but many have one or more of them on their property. “They own it; they maintain it,” Shands said. But the utility company, city or cable company has been guaranteed the right to use an easement.
“Unless a property owner gets a survey and reads carefully, he may not know that he has an easement on his property,” Shands said.
People need to be aware of easements when they get a plat for a plot of land, Biggers said. Real estate agents should explain what easements mean to property buyers, “but they don’t always," he said.
When it comes to building on the easement or right of way, common courtesy is at issue, Jones said, whatever a property owner’s rights.
“When running lines is it normal not to notify residents?” Jones said.
“We don’t usually do that with new construction unless it disrupts service,” Difonzo said later.
“We don’t go onto people’s property without getting permission,” Biggers said.
The city of New Braunfels tries to notify property owners of upcoming construction next to their property, Shands said. When street crews will be working a certain area, they let residents know in advance. “We set out door hangers, saying ‘we’re going to be coming out for a few days,”’ Shands said, “even if it is outright ownership by the city.”
The new Hunter Road lute will benefit more than just Colorado Materials, Difonzo said. The way the plant draws power made the power for the whole area fluctuate, affecting many customers’ residential service.
“A majority of our system is going to benefit from the new lines because of the way Colorado Materials is using power with power fluctuation,” Difonzo said.
It’s difficult to balance the rights of all the citizens which the city and the utilities serve against the concerns of one or a few, Shands said.
“We don’t take the attitude that we have the right and we don’t care about them,” Difonzo said.
“The next time I have to deal with this entity,” Jones said, “I will call my lawyer."
The Comal River and the springs that feed it are largely responsible for maintaining the economy of New Braunfels as well as maintaining the life of many endangered species that live along the river. Governor Bush signed a bill yesterday that should offer more stability and better protection of the Comal Springs.
In 1993, the Texas Legislature passed a bill replacing the Edwards Underground Water District, which is an elected board, with the Edwards Aquifer Authority, which is an appointed board. This board would have the authority to enact pumping limits for the aquifer. The Department of Justice received complaints saying that replacing an elected board with an appointed board violated voting rights.
During this year’s legislation session, a new bill was introduced that corrected this problem. The bill was passed by both the House of Representatives and the Senate and was signed by the Governor Wednesday.
Craig Hollmig, an Edwards Underground Water District board member, said the change in boards will be a positive one for New Braunfels. Hollmig said the Edwards Underground Water District is responsible for building recharge dams and protecting and preserving the aquifer. He said that currently, no one regulates pumping and people can pump as much as they like.
“The person with the biggest pump sets the limits,” said Hollmig.
Hollmig said the new entity, the Edwards Aquifer Authority, will have a regulating capacity. He said the board will work towards reducing pumping and maintaining spring flow to comply with the Endangered Species Act, which is mandated in the bill. He said the Endangered Species Act protects the springs in Comal and Hays counties and the various species found along them. He said this will give the board a tool to reduce pumping and maintain or increase the amount of water in the springs.
“Less pumping means more water for the springs, which is good news to Comal County,” said Hollmig.
Hollmig said the current Edwards Underground Water District board members were split on support for the bill. He said members representing the Comal County area supported the demise of the board, while members from the Bexar County area were against the change.
“We wanted to lose our jobs because we don’t have the tools to do that job. We have no way of regulating the pumping and protecting the springs,” he said.
Doug Miller, Water Negotiator for New Braunfels Utilities, the city of New Braunfels, and Comal County, said the main opposition to the bill are individuals who say pumping limits violate
their property rights. However, he said a person’s property rights arc only guaranteed if they do not violate a neighbor’s rights. People who pump a large amount of water out of the springs violate the rights of others by reducing the spnngs, he said. ;
“You’ve violated my nghts, because you’ve taken away my Comal River,” said Hollmig.
Jacqueline Cullom, city attorney for New Braunfels, said the bill should have a more effective result. She said any regulating of pumping should help the springs which will be good news to New Braunfels.
The bill will create the Edwards Aquifer Authority as an elected board with two non-voting appointed members. Miller said the two members would represent downstream interests and the western counties. Miller said the replacement will be effective September I.
Miller said an interim board will be appointed until the election is held during the November 1996 elections. He said the 15-mcmber board will consist of four representatives from eastern counties and four representatives from western counties. The remaining seven representatives will be from Bexar County. Miller said that could possibly cause a problem depending on how you look at it.
“Some say it’s eight to seven. Some say no it’s four, four, and seven because we have our interests, the western counties have their interests, and San Antonio has its interests. That’s something we’ll have to work through when we get there," Miller said.
However, Hollmig said that even though Bexar County will hold more seats on the board they may not have an unequal influence on policy. He said the board will be able to apply the Endangered Species Act to help get policies approved.
“The Endangered Species Act can be used as the tool to pressure the-policy through. It basically says what you can and can’t do,” he said.
Another bill related to the Edwards Aquifer Authority failed to make it past the legislature. Miller said this bill would have done three things. First, he said it would have corrected dates in the original bill passed in 1993. Hollmig said that bill contained many deadlines which have now passed. He said he believed these dates could now be corrected through normal policy procedures among the new board
Miller said the other two things it would have done is that it would have clarified the language in the appeals process and it would have allowed the Edwards Underground Water District to remain in existence for two more years.
“This was mainly a house cleaning bill,” said Hollmig. "It would not have had a direct impact on the policies of the EAA.”
The second bill failed to make it out of the legislature
Manuel Cemareno, family and friends opened their new disabled access home during an open house this week. A Department of Veterans Affairs grant he!pad fund the house. Architect Ignacio Pine designed and Rayco Ltd. built the Amy Street home, l-r: Dora Cemareno, Mayor Paul E. Fraser Jr., Manuel Cemareno, Tina Fraser, Brandon Villanueva, Cassie Cemareno.Bush wants to reduce your property tax without starting an income tax. See Page 4