New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 22, 1983, New Braunfels, Texas
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The journalists were killed near the border with Nicaragua
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U.S. journalists killed in Honduras
TEGUCIGALPA, Honduras (AP) - Two American journalists were killed by artiller) fire while driving on an isolated road along the Honduras-Nicaragua border, the State Department said today. Honduras blamed Nicaraguan soldiers for the attack.
Honduran Foreign Minister Edgardo Paz Barnica said the bodies of Dial Torgerson. I>os Angeles Times bureau chief for Mexico and Central America, and free-lance photographer Richard Cross, on assignment for U.S. News & World Report, were being
brought by car to the capital and would arrive today after an eight-hour drive.
Anita Stockman, a State Department spokeswoman in Washington, confirmed today that Torgerson and Cross were killed Tuesday evening.
Heavy rifle fire along the the Nicaraguan border prevented Honduran troops from recovering the bodies immediately, but they did so after nightfall, Paz Barnica said. He said the information from the border zone, 75 miles south of Tegucigalpa, came from a
‘‘definitive report from military intelligence.”
Paz Barnica said Torgersen, Cross and their Honduran driver, who he identified as 27-year-old Jose Herrera, were killed around 5 p.m. EDT Tuesday by anti-tank gunfire from Nicaraguan troops across the border. However, The Los Angeles Times said it had been told by Honduran officials that the driver may have survived.
The Honduran government sent an immediate protest note to Nicaragua. Paz
Barnica said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press.
He said an anti-tank shell shattered the rented automobile Cross and Torgerson were riding in on a stretch of dirt road a few yards from the Nicaraguan border.
The road is between the villages of Cifuentes and l^as Trojan, which are about 75 miles east of Tegucigalpa but 218 miles by car because of the winding mountainous roud to the isolated region.
New Is!skU Braunfels
New Braunfels. Texas
June 22,1983 25 cents
Vol. 92 No. 123
34 Pages — 4 Sections
topic of debate
By DEBBIE DeLOACH Staff writer
Despite accusations of “teaching the test,” Comal Independent School District trustees and patrons were treated to a transparency show Tuesday night on how well CISl) .students fared in recent Texas Assessment of Basic Skills (TABS i tests.
But Mrs. Gay Watson, ClSD’s new assistant superintendent, and her transparencies had to wait until after some members of the audience had their say. About 175 people listened as James Mangum, a local Certified Public Accountant, told the board hts idea of a business formula for success.
"A successful business starts out with qualified people It 1ms a clear policy, and applies it There is communication, and confidence among lls people.” Mangum began, and it has effective leaders who can motivate employees.
“I congratulate you on the TABS test scores. You have succeeded in spite of yourself.”
Mangum said the easy way out of all this controversy is “to point to Dr Willhelm He lias to sell your policy, and to do that, tie has to communicate that policy up and down and believe in it. We have failed some where in the communication department.
“Some point to Hie dissident groups as the cause of all this,” he continued. “That's bull. Either the policy hasn't been made clear or hasn't been consistent, or there was too much board intervention, or there was a failure at Hie superindeiitent’s level But this board gave Dr Willliclm their support at the last meeting, so it's on your shoulders now.”
Carter Casteel, a spokesperson for the "Concerned Taxpayers” group, thanked the board for the ll*
member advisory committee. She thanked trustee Karen Rust for her apology for a May 27 incident involving a Canyon High School final exam, and acknowledged trustee Carey McWilliams’ published .statement of "I agree with that IOO percent.”
Then she asked if the board knew about the interruption of the final exam, prior to its occurrence “If so, will this board permit it to happen again, or will a policy be developed st* it won’t?,” she questioned, then asked for the board members lo respond individually, un their feelings about the incident
Col. Robert Van Horn, chairman of the 11-member advisory committee, then introduced Kay Walling as the committee's spokesperson "I ask you to prove your interest in the district by giving us tune, and trusting in the belief that this committee can come up with workable solutions to some of the problems," Walling said “This will not be a witch hunt, or a cover-up This committee won't hesitate to point out wrong-doing if we find any," Walling added But we are asking for your goodwill, your cooperation, and your contributions Call us We've been given a chance, an instrument lx?t’s not blow it, people.**
Committee members and their respective plume numbers are: Van Horn, 625-8807; Walling. 964-3809; Denote Williams. 438-7555; Hon Travis, 438-7104; Paul Tice, 625-6698; Don Olson, 625-1146; ltulip Endicott. 629-6442; Lucie Do we, 438-2926; Jane Burr, 625-4648; and Dwain Brown. 899-2698 In a round-about way, Casteel got the individual response she wanted from one board member during Mrs Watson’s presentation Carey McWilliams hail
Staff (tho to by Of att)** try
See cisi). Page t2A Joe Hartman made points about drainage
Light in the tunnel
Planners end work on subdivsion rules
Bv DYANNE FRY Staff writer
It tiKik six workshops and three consultants, but the Planning and /.oiling Commission finally did it. Tuesday night, members worked their way through page 108 of an updated subdivision code.
In the process, they tackled the sticky subject of sidewalks, which have been a point of controversy since tile revision process started almost a year ago.
The consulting firm of Freese & Nichols will now update the latest version of the code, incorporating all the changes recommended by board consensus in past months. The commission will review that draft in a seventh, and hopefully final, workshop, before presenting it to City Council.
Seventh, that is, if the commission hasn’t lost count.
Alan EfBussey, the latest representative of Freest- & Nichols, came in for the last two meetings. Planning Director Dc bra Goodwin was quite pleased to itll him. Unlike his two predecessors, she said, Eft russe) actually had answers to questions posed by the commission and local developers, who were invited to all the meetings.
A handful of surveyors and developers, including the always-outspoken Bill Kolodzie, show et! up Tuesday. Kolodzie and City Engineer Tex Yeary led some lively discussion on sidewalks, street right-of-
See PLANNERS, Page 12A
Guaranty State parent company part of merger
By JACQUELINE SMITH Staff writar
Mercantile Texas Corporation of Dallas — the parent company of Guaranty State Bank of New Braunfels and Southwest Banc-shares Inc., of Houston have agreed lo a merger plan
This will result in a new banking and financial services organization — Mercantile Southwest Corporation, which at Ute end of 1982 would have ranked as Ute 20th largest banking orgamzation in the nation and third largest in Texas The corporation,
which includes 68 banks and pending mergers, has total assets of $18 billion.
The merger — announced Tuesday by Gene II Bishop, chairman and chief executive officer of Mercantile Bank and John T Cater, chairman and chief executive officer of Southwest Banc shares — will "not have any significant effect” on the local bank, said Donnie Seay, president of Guaranty State Bank
"There won t be any ( flange iii the local operation,” he noted Guaranty State will, however, “be part of a larger holding company ...with the full
strength and resources < of Mercantile I” behind it. Seay said.
And the local bank will have a larger amount of loan money available to it, due to the merger, which will increase the legal lending limit,” Sea) added Guaranty will also keep iLs own name and separate identity, said Sea), who seemed “sure that the overall philosophy of tile holding company will not change,”
Both Mercantile'* and Southwest*! board of directors have already agreed to the merger, which calls for tile issuance of I 05 shares of Mer
cantile Southwest common stock for each share of the 15,897 .(MMI shares of common stock of Southwest.
“This merger gives Texas a new statewide financial services organization with extraordinary capabilities," said Bishop of Mercantile
“Our combined strength, particularly in tile two major commercial-financial centers of the state, Dallas and Houston, is the key to this marriage,” added Bishop who will become chairman and chief executive officer of Mercantile Southwest
Cater will serve as president and
chief operations officer. The presidents of the two existing organizations (before tilt* merger) will become vice chairmen of the new company.
Mercantile Southwest will have corporate offices in both Dallas and Houston and tile board of directors of the new company will equally iii both cities.
According to a company press release, Ute combined entity will have a major commercial banking presences? iii Hr* most significant market areas in the state arid will offer an unsurpassed range of con
sumer financial services — from credit cards aud MPACT automated tellers to discount brokerage and insurance.
Mercantile Texas is a holding company with assets of $10.7 billion, including pending acquisitions, 30 member and pending banks It is the 27th largest banking organization in the nation, and the fifth largest in Texas.
Southwest is a bauk holding company with total assets ut $7.3 billion, 38 member and pending member banks and is the 38lh large-- kinking organization in the italic.!
'Posse' still undaunted despite PEC setback
By SANORA JACKSON Staff writar
If SO more Pedernales Posse” supporters had shown up at the annual general membership meeting of the Pedernales Electric Cooperative Monday, the vole could have gone the other way
That’s tile word from Posse spokesman Bill Collier of Marble Falls, who said Posse supporters took home 300-500 signed proxy cards tliat were not able to be voted Monday.
Two PEC incumbent directors were relected for three-year terms on the board, both by relatively slim margins O C. Hannon of [hipping Springs retained lux seat in District 4 by a vote of 2,991 to 2,684 for Gene Vtnyardof lakeway Incumbent M C. Winters of Johnson City beat challenger George Wentach of Blue lake Estates by a vote of 2,983 to 2,896
A total of 5,684 votes were cast in the election, but only 960 members were actually present at the meeting
Members voting by proxy numbered 4,724 Each member in attendance la permitted to cast three
proxy votes according to PEC bylaws, and supporters of incumbents as well as Posse candidates were standing near registration lines Monday handing out signed proxy cards to each voter who registered The Posse is a group orgaiuzed to fight for control of the PEC by ousting incumbent directors and replacing them with candidates of its choice.
"We’re real upbeat about it.” said Collier, regarding the reaction of Posse supporters to Hie election results “Our people are not downhearted because we came so dose Actually, we’re kind of surprised,*’ he added We have achieved a great deal in terms of credibility with the PEC and our supporters,” he said “Our message to those people who didn’t show up this time is to forget your soap opera and come on out next time We do have a chance”
Collier predicted that the Posse would have a bt more supporters present at future eletions Posse organizers are considering drawing up a petition to be circulated
See POSSE, Page 12A
Today’s foiecast culls for hot, muggy weather, with a chance of showers The high today will be near 90. with tonight’s low expected to be near 70.
The space shuttle Challenger proved it could retrieve crippled spacecraft during an experiment today The astronauts and NASA id , fRials were pleased with the experiment results Story, page 11 A.
Pope in Poland
The pope was called a super patriot today after a Mass with a record attendance of 2 nullum people After the Mass Solidarity supporters inarched in the streets, chanting with joy. The Vatican said the pope’s visit was of a spiritual, not political, nature Story, page 11 A.
CLASSIFIED ................... 6 8B
COMICS. . . . .....................4D
TV LISTINGS ...................4D
Trustees approve plan to upgrade health coverage
A committee of teachers and administrators recommended a better health insurance policy for Comal Independent School District employees They got their wish Tuesday night from some agreeable trustees.
Hie Blue Cross-Blue Shield policy, which was approved by a committee vote of 10-3 prior to the board meeting, will mean a 27.59 percent increase for lR;alth insurance benefits for CIS!) employees The committee considered a $200 deductible, as well as Hr* approved $500 deductible The current policy Blue Cross-Blue Shield lias with the district carries a $1,000 security provision.
“I like llus plan It puts the employee at a risk for $500, instead of $1,000. and I Hunk that’s a nice change," trustee David Way said.
“For the dollar difference, I Hunk the $500 deal is the best plan,” trustee David Boatner added The dollar difference is Uiere, but the superintendent’s recoinmendaUon was to go with the $500 deductible anyway. Total budgetary costs for Hie three rates were $274,744 for an update of Hr? present policy, $329,893 per tad specifications for the $200 deductible, and $280,283 for the $500 deductible The $280,283 figure is a $60,753 increase over the district’s 1982-83 cost, or a 27 59 percent Increase The first year the istrict provided the employee health insurance plan was in 1881-82, at a total cost of $197,972. The cost to the district has continued to escalate due to the prior experience rating of the group," Willhelm said. "lf the experience of Hie
group continues in Ur* present trend idown now around 1031, then it may be possible to obtain additional bidders in the future This lime, our current carrier was the only response ae got out of about 20 bid invitations ”
In oUier action, Ha? board accepted a role in the Teen Connection’s Alternative School Advisory Committee, blanks to a little urging b> Director Nancy Ney “I’m not asking for money I have enough to open Sept 15,” Ney said “Wliat I want from you is support and input Ney proposed an advisory commit!**, made up of a trustee from each Hr* county’s two school districts, one person from each special education, department, and a juvenile probation representative “Our goal is to increase the number of graduates from our high schools and their succ ess in life,” she said, “and I want both school districts to be involved ”
To determine Hr* need for Teen Connection, Ney used numbers mainly from the Juvenile Probation Office. “We can anticipate 82 to 250 kids, between the ages 12 and 17, will use Hie program, depending on the referrals By Hiat, I mean, if we get Hie kids who aren't necessarily troublemakers, but just underachiever* as well,” Ney said laud year, Ney said there were 75 dropouts in Comal County, “lf we can salvage 70 percent from that, we would feel successfully,*' she added
See INSURANCE, Pate UA