New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 13, 1985, New Braunfels, Texas
New Braunfels Herald Zeitung Thursday, June 13, 1985
White signs waste bills
AUSTIN (AP) — legislation to increase the state’s enforcement power and encourage reduction and recycling of hazardous wastes has been signed into law.
“We have a responsibility to future generations of Texans to act as good stewards of our environment today. I am pleased to help honor that commitment by signing this legislative package,” Gov. Mark White said Wednesday in signing the two measures.
The bills, sponsored by Hep. Stan Schleuter. I)-Killeen, and Sen. Ray Farabee, D-Wichita Falls, were the outgrowth of a major hazardous waste study headed by Max Sherman, dean of the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas.
The legislation sets down a priority list of preferred methods for reducing and disposing of hazardous waste material to protect public health and the environment.
It calls on industry to minimize waste production. Waste generators are to recycle or treat it to destroy or reduce hazardous properties Only after those options are exhausted is industry to use underground injection or land disposal of
The legislation also requires a registry be kept of abandoned hazardous waste sites, and it provides for their expedited cleanup. It authorizes the state to levy a fee on hazardous waste producers and disposal companies to pay for the cleanup.
White said he still has .several hundred bills from the 1985 legislature to sign before midnight Sunday, lf he doesn't sign or veto them by that time, they become law without his signature
Among those he signed on Wednesday was a measure to expand community based mental health treatment provided by the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation.
The bill, sponsored by Sen. Chet Brooks, D* Pasadena, and Rep. Jack Vowed, R FI Paso, requires the department to develop a six-year plan for providing more community based services.
“These plans will solidify our state’s strong commitment to provide a careful balance of quality institutional and community-based programs to treat our citizens suffering from mental disabilities,” White said
This landmark legislation underscores our
state’s commitment to provide quality care for the mentally ill and mentally retarded,” he said.
Also Wednesday, White signed bills that will:
— Expand the state cancer registry, giving doctors more accurate information on the incidence of cancer in Texas and improve their ability to monitor treatment results.
Allow cities and counties to accept, for the first time, credit cards in payment of local fees, fines, court costs and other governmental charges.
There would be a processing fee of not more than 5 percent of the charge, and a special penalty levied if the credit card is not backed by sufficient credit.
— Prohibit public and private universities from penalizing students who are absent from class because of a religious holiday.
Many religions observe their holy days during the week or on weekends, but college students who follow their convictions on those days are not excused from classes or exams. As a result, students must choose between observing their faith or flunking courses,” said the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Hector Uribe, D-Brownsville.
Baptist peace still a convention question
DALLAS (AP) — Peace between clashing Southern Baptist factions remains uncertain today after a tempestuous convention tangle that brought complaints of injustice, irregular voting and arbitrary procedures.
Some moderates in the nation’s largest Protestant denomination said that in the face of such tactics they were dubious about newly adopted peace measures.
The controversy arose Wednesday night over the selection of candidates to control the church's 20 national agencies.
Only a few hours before, the convention had approved a 22-member “peace committee’’ representing both fundamentalists and moderates to investigate the causes of the conflict within the denomination and to recommend solutions.
The dispute centered on a ruling that the convention could not change the presidential^' appointed committee that names trustees governing denominational institutions. The slate was approved in a ballot vote marked with allegations of dishonesty after a clamorous wave of objections to it.
A wave of protesting shouts of “point of order,” ignored by the fundamentalist-aligned president, the Rev. Charles Stanley, surged from floor microphones, their red lights blinking, when he put the of ficial slate to a hand vote. When that was too divided to determine, written voting was ordered
The slate was approved, but registrar I^?e Porter announced he had received numerous reports that some people were passing out extra ballots.
“Maybe some were dishonest,” he
told the convention, but said he had in* evidence to be sure. “I don’t know. God help this convention to get back to meticulous honesty.”
The upheaval came after the Rev. James Slatton of Richmond, Va., moved to replace a proposed committee on boards, picked by the pi esident. with elected heads of state conventions and elected state women leaders.
The one chance this body has for peace is to adopt a committee that this whole body can trust,” he said. noting that the presidential appointive authority has been the basis for the factional strife.
Stanley initially ruled the proposed substitution of the entire slate out of order, saying names could be substituted only individually.
Parliamentarian Wayne Allen of Memphis then took the podium to say the bylaws do not permit the con
vention to make subsitutions for the official slate, either individually or altogether.
At that point, Stanley put the slate to a vote, ignoring the outburst of challenges to his action.
Slatton protested, “In any democratic body I’ve ever been in, once a slate of nominees is presented, other nominations can be made from the floor. It’s also patent that in any democratic body, the cry of point-of-order' means you should stop and see if it’s valid.”
The Rev. Bill Sherman, a moderate leader of Nashville, Tenn., said the procedure “was not just” and reflected an “absence of integrity.” Without justice, we’re going to be hard pressed to be reconciled. Justice is a cardinal virtue of Christianity. I’m not being a poor loser, and I’m not leaving the ship, but I don’t want this convention stolen,” he said.
Ruling may be costly for state
AUSTIN (AP) - I .and Commissioner Garry Mauro says he was “surprised and disappointed” by a Texas Supreme Court ruling on mineral rights that could cost the state more than $900 million.
“This case could have major negative implications for the state and for the schoolchildren of Texas. As much as $918 million in future revenue dedicated to the Permanent School Fund could be affected,” Mauro said Wednesday.
The state had contended it owned all the coal and lignite located under 817 acres that H.D/ Schwarz Jr. had acquired and leased for strip mining in 1978.
Schwarz sued the state in 1979, asserting title to the coal and lignite. A district court and the 3rd Court of Appeals in Austin ruled against Schwarz, but the Supreme Court reversed those decisions and ruled in his favor.
The state argued that coal and lignite were reserved for the the state when the land was sold for home tracts in 1907. Schwarz acquired the land later.
Mauro said that when the surface rights to the contested land were sold at the turn of the century, they were sold at a price that didn’t include the mineral rights because it was understood the state retained those minerals.
“Since the turn of the century, Texas land commissioners have very carefully reserved the state’s mineral rights to the property because it was understood that the state retained those minerals,” Mauro said. “Now the Supreme Court wants to give away something that surface owners never paid for.”
But Supreme Court Justice Sears McGee disagreed.
“The state argues that theGARRY MAURO
Legislature, through the sale of land pursuant to the I.and Sales Act, intended to reserve all minerals with the corresponding right to destroy the surface,” he said.
“The intent of the legislature, through the passage of the land Sales Acts, was to encourage settlement of the state of Texas. The land Sales Act of 1895 contained no requirement that minerals be reserved. Nowhere in the act are minerals mentioned,” McGee said.
McGee noted that the state Supreme Court in 1984 “stated that certain substances, including near surface iron ore, coal and lignite, belong to the surface estate as a matter of law.”
Mauro said the General lend Office estimates that in the long term, the court ruling could affect $918 million in revenues from hard minerals on some 6 million acres of land on which the state has dual ownership.Pair given probation,fine in $6 million money-smuggling scheme
CORPUS CHRISTI (AP) - Two men accused of trying to smuggle almost $8 million out the country were scolded, given probation and fined by a federal judge who said “the punishment doesn t fit the crime.”
Francisco Guirola-Beeche of Albuquerque, N M., and El Salvador, and Oscar Rodriguez-Feo of Miami each were given five years probation and fined $250,000, as well as forced to relinquish claim to the $5.9 million seize Feb. 6 at Kleberg County Airport in Kingsville.
U.S. District Judge Hayden Hi ad Jr. on Wednesday also scolded Guinda, who is listed as an adviser to Roberto d’Aubuisson, the head of the conservative ARENA party in El Salvador.
Head initially had a difficult time making up his mind on a plea bargain agreement struck by prosecutors “The punishment doesn’t fit the crime as proposed by the agreement," Head told Guirola I ll think about it. Sit down. I have a hard time swallowing it ”
Head heard another case for '0
mutes before railing Guirola back ’ore him and agreeing to the i angement.
I don t know what you were up to. it this conduct cannot lie tolerated, I dally for .someone trving obtain menial! citizenship," Head told uirola.
I * derat authorities clanned the im ley was drug-related — an aethon lenied by defense lawyers
and ARENA opponents said the money was to be used to fund right-wing political activities in El Salvador.
Guirola, 34, and Rodriguez, 48, went before the judge separately and said nothing to him.
They refused to talk to reporters outside the courtroom.
The men had entered pleas before Head on April 29 with Guirola
pleading no contest to conspiring to transport more than $10,000 out of the country without notifying authorities. Rodriguez pleaded guilty to the charge.
In the plea bargain arrangement with Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Berg charges against a third man were dismissed and his jet returned.
Gus Maestrales of Miami, the owner and pilot of a T-39 Saberliner,
Indicted principal paid to quit
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LIVINGSTON IAP) - A rural school board has offered a junior high school principal $25,000 for his resignation, but board members say the offer was not made because of his indictment in the love-tnangle murder of the football coach.
School officials say they sought the resignation of Woodson Junior High School Principal Hurley Fontenot because he engaged in “grossly immoral conduct” by continuing to live with his ex-wife after their divorce and by other acts.
The Hull-Daisetta School Board voted Monday to buy out Fontenot, 48, who was indicted last month in the shooting death of coach Billy Mac Fleming, 36. Fontenot, who signed a new two-year contract with the board in February for a $33,960 annual salary, agreed to the buyout.
Prosecutors say the shooting in April was prompted by a love triangle between Fontenot, Fleming and leura Nugent, a former school secretary who was the coach's fiancee. Fontenot, who is free on $50,000 bond, pleaded innocent and is scheduled for trial Aug. 19.
However, school officials say Fontenot’s termination is not a result of the indictment.
Kenneth Voytek, superintendent of
the school district, which en compasses two small towns in ' ural southeast Texas, demanded Fontenot’s resignation without pay in a May 22 letter that accused the principal of living with his former wife, using school credit cards to pay for $14 40 of gasoline, and failure to prepare annual cour se schedules for students and teachers.
The letter also alleges the district had been unable to account for money collected for graduation gowns, cheerleader uniforms, school trips and activity funds.
Fontenot’s brother and attorney Walter Fontenot, said the principal resigned “because of everything that’s going on.”
The attorney said Wednesday that the school board had approved his brother’s two-year contract on the recommendation of Voytek.
“That’s very strange,” Walter Fontenot said “From what I’ve heard, all of tile things they said that they wanted him fired for happened before February of ’85 That shows the mentality of some of these people.”
The principal took a leave of absence from his job April 30, citing health reasons, school officials said.
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said he did not know what the men were carrying and that they were merely passengers aboard his aircraft.
Head asked Berg if the government’s reason for a plea bargain was because it had a weak case, but Berg said, “No.”
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