New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 10, 1997, New Braunfels, Texas
■Totalk with Managing Editor Margaret Edmonson about the Opinion page, caf! 625-9144, Ext 220
OL O T A £ L E
“lf is rayopk to condemn the coverage of the pefM»alsMe of politics. In presidential dectkms, Ae People are choosing a persoa, ast just a barile of pottdes.”
Howell Raines journalist
Public access channel could bring city government home
lf a proposed agreement between the city of New Braunfels and Tele-Communications Inc. comes to fruition, there should be no excuse for missing city council meetings.
The agreement could give the city a government access channel on which to broadcast live city council meetings, planning and zoning board meetings and other city government meetings inside council chambers. The channel also could deliver a bulletin board for public announcements, informational videos on city services and events and live talk shows.
TCI would pay $20,000 to $30,000 to install cable and camera equipment for die broadcast, which could be operational by late July or early August. Although the government access channel has been a part of the city* franchise pact with TCI, the city did not have the money to pay for the equipment that TCI now would fund.
New Braunfels is venturing into new territory for cities its size by embarking on such an effort.
“It* going to mark the beginning of a new era as far as communication in this area,” said Don Ferguson, assistant to the city manager who is negotiating with TCI. “Residents will have the opportunity to see government in action and stay up with the makjgAfif laws in this community. It is our hope we can create a mode^or other communities.”
Attending government meetings sounds about as much fun as getting a root canal, but it is an important part of the democratic process. Often, voters and taxpayers do not make the effort to attend meetings because those meetings take place at inconvenient times or because they would take time away from family.
With the public access channel, city government can be delivered to the home with the touch of the remote. Taxpayers can keep up with their elected officials while they are eating dinner or spending time with their children.
City council and TCI are tackling a worthy project that will lead to a better informed electorate, which should translate into better government for everyone.
(Today’s editorial was written by Herald-Zeitung Managing Editor Margaret Edmonson.)
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■ To submit letters and guest columns electronically by way of online services or Internet, or to simply contact staff members, the managing editor's address is NBHZeitungOAOL.com.Budget agreement leaves something to be desired
Editor and Publisher, Ext. 201........................................Doug Toney
Managing Editor, Ext 220.................................Margaret Edmonson
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All government — indeed, every human benefit and enjoyment, every virtue and every prudent act — is founded on compromise and barter.
The budget agreement Congress approved in May represents a classic illustration of Burke's observation. I was a less-than-enthusiastic supporter of the agreement because, like the proverbial ha] -mnpty glass, it leaves something to be desired At the end of the negotiation process, die executive branch and members of Congress on both sides of the aisle achieved some (not all) of their objectives.
I voted for this agreement despite my reservation because, if its assumptions are correct, it will lead to a balanced budget in five years. We have to keep our eye on die goal of achieving a balanced budget, and the agreement focuses on that over
The agreement outlines $85 billion in net tax cuts which should include; a phased-in, $500-per-child tax credit for families, a phase-out of income limits for IRA deductions, but do allow tax-free withdrawal, cuts in inheritance taxes and capital gains taxes and education tax credits for college.
In addition, the following provisions were agreed to;
• an estimated $16 billion for expanded health coverage for needy children
• $10 billion to restore some benefits to immigrants
• Increased spending on schools and the environment
• A projected $115 billion saving in Medicare spending to keep the program solvent for another decade.
The agreement does not cut government spending as much as I would have liked. And I am committed to providing Americans with significantly more tax relief that this measure allows. But it does give us die opportunity to provide some tax relief for working families.
I suspect that I wasn’t the only member of Congress who voted for this measure primarily because it offers a real chance of balancing the federal budget by the year 2002. I continue to believe that deficit spending robs this country of its life’s blood, mortgaging future generations to pay for what we want to do today. Balancing the budget remains a critical necessity.
That said, Texans need to under
stand some pertinent facts about this budget agreement. It doesn’t cut spending, it limits the growth of spending. The savings necessary to balance the budget will come largely in projected savings from reducing the growth of entitlement programs. And, most important, the books are not yet closed.
A budget resolution is a measure that sets only general targets for spending and revenue. It describes the size of the pie and a rough outline of how it’s to be sliced Specific tax and spending legislation remains to be written. That will be the hard part When that process begins, my priorities will remains the same: a child tax credit, significant capital gains tax cuts, expansion of IRAS and the eventual elimination of the death tax. This budget gives us an opening to pursue those objectives.
(Kay Bailey Hutchison is a U.S. Senator representing Texas.)
True fatherhood in one word — commitment
This Father’s Day, as in years oast, children will send cards, give gifts or place phone calls to their fathers. Many children will simply say, “Happy Father’s Day.” What they mean is: “Thank you and I love you for being an active and positive part of my life.”
On June 15, Father’s Day, this scenario will play out with millions of children and their fathers. And many men will feel their efforts to raise their children have meant something to their children.
For children whose fathers take the time to provide for, talk to, play with, advise, discipline, help, listen, defend, encourage and sacrifice for thc*ir children, this kind of participation can be summed up in one word — commitment.
Sadly, not all children will be able to wish their fathers Happy Father’s Day because, for whatever reasons,
Today in History
By The Associated Press
Today is Tuesday, June IO, the 161st day of 1997. There are 204 days left in the year.
Today’s Highlight in History:
On June IO, 1935, Alcoholics Anonymous was founded in Akron, Ohio, by William G. Wilson and Dr. Robert Smith.
On this date:
In 1801, the North African state of Tripoli declared war on the United States in a dispute over safe passage of merchant vessels through the Mediterranean.
In 1865, the opera “Tristan und Isolde” by Richard Wagner premiered in Munich, Germany.
In 1892, the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis nominated President Harrison for re-election and Whitelaw Reid for vice president. (Harrison, however, lost the election to former President
their fathers have not been there. However, the status quo can change.
Fathers can and should take the necessary steps to be active role models for their children.
In the best of circumstances, daughters learn how they should be treated and respected by their boyfriends or husbands by watching their fathers interact with their mothers. Likewise, sons learn how to treat and respect women through the example set by their fathers.
The decisions parents make when raising their children make all the
difference in the world. Child support plays a major role in the development of the next generation — and in the future of our state.
Responsibility, pride and integrity go hand in hand when it comes to discussing the characteristics of committed fathers. A responsible father will provide financially for his children and has the pride and integrity not to push his children off on the government to obtain food, clothing and shelter.
Every child needs caring and responsible parents. But government and laws cannot mandate caring parents. As a governmental entity, the Office of the Attorney General can only try to locate parents, establish paternity and support obligations, and enforce those obligations through the IV-D child support program. The rest is up to the parents.
More than money is at stake. The
love, affection and respect of children will become more important to fathers as their children grow. I encourage all fathers to show that you care — and earn your children’s’ respect — by taking responsibility as fathers. The decisions parents make when raising their children are critical.
It’s not too late to become an active and positive role model in your children’s lives. Take the time to establish paternity if you haven’t done so.
If you have fallen behind in your child’s support payments and would like to work out a repayment plan, please call the child support office listed in your local telephone directory or call (800) 252-8014. Your children are counting on you — and they’re worth it.
(Dan Morales is the Texas attorney general.)
In 1922, singer-actress Judy Garland was bom Frances Gumm in Grand Rapids, Minn.
In 1940, Italy declared war on France and Britain; Canada declared war cm Italy.
In 1942, the Gestapo massacred 173 male residents of Lidice, Czechoslovakia, in retaliation for the killing of a Nazi official.
In 1946, Italy replaced its abolished monarchy with a republic.
In 1964, the U.S. Senate voted to limit further debate on a proposed civil rights bill, shutting off a filibuster by Southern states.
lu 1967, the Middle East War ended as Israel and Syria agreed to observe a United Nations-mediated cease-fire.
In 1977, James Earl Ray, the convicted assassin of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., escaped from Brushy Mountain
State Prison in Tennessee with six others; he was recaptured June 13.
In 1981, in Frascati, Italy, 6-year-old Alfredo Rampi fell down an artesian well; the story ended tragically as efforts to rescue him proved futile.
Ten years ago; The leaders of seven major industrial nations ended a three-day summit in Venice, proposing no new major economic initiatives, but calling for closer coordination of their economies and a stabilizing of foreign currency rates.
Five years ago: President Bush dropped Secretary of State James A. Baker III from his trip to the Earth Summit in Brazil, instructing him to step up negotiations for a new agreement with Russia to reduce long-range nuclear missile stockpiles.
One year ago: The Colorado
Avalanche defeated the Florida
Panthers 1-0 in triple overtime to win the Stanley Cup in a four-gam^ sweep.
Today’s Birthdays: Britain's Prince ftiilip is 76. Columnist Nat Hentoff is 72. Author Maurice Sendak is 69. Attorney F. Lee Bailey is 64. Singer Shirley Alston (The Shirelles) is 56. Media commentator Jeff Greenfield is 54. Actor Andrew Stevens is 42. Actress Elisabeth Shue is 34. Model-actress Elizabeth Hurley is 32. Model Linda Evangelista is 32. Rock musician Emma Anderson (Lush) is 30. Rhythm-and-blues singer Jo-Jo (Jodeci) is 26. Rhythm-and-blues singer Faith Evans is 24. Rhythm-and-blues singer Lemisha Grinstead (702) is 19.
Thought for Today: “I am firm. You are obstinate. He is a pig-headed fool.” — Katharine Whitehom, British newspaper columnist.