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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - June 29, 1999, New Braunfels, Texas Bond reduced for two men accused of assaulting girl By Chris Chews Staff Writer Two men accused of sexually assaulting a half-conscious 16-year-old girl at a River Road campground on June 20 were released from the Comal County Jail on Monday. State District Judge Gary Steel reduced the bond from $ 100,000 each to $35,000 each after hearing testimony from an investigator and the fathers of the two men. Both families paid $3,500, IO percent of the bond amount, to the district clerk. The men were released about 2 p.m. One of the fathers broke down in tears while testifying he did not have the financial resources to post IO percent of theSee BOND/3 Inside Abby.............................. Classifieds................... , ..5 .9-12 Comics......................... .......7 Crossword.................... .......5 Forum........................... .......6 Local/Metro................... ........4 Movies.......................... ........5 Obituaries..................... ........3 Sports..................... ......0 Today........................... ........2 Television...................... ........7 www herald Tattling rom Key code 76 Ingram ruling expected Wednesday By Heather Tooo Staff Writer The state’s top environmental agency will decide Wednesday in Austin, the future of a proposed concrete batch plant off U.S. 281 and Texas 46. The Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission is scheduled to give a final ruling on Ingram Readymix Company’s application for a standard exemption when it meets at I p.m. at its offices, 12118 N. Interstate 35. Ingram Readymix Company oper ates a concrete batch plant off old Highway 81 West in Comal County. The franchise is seeking authorization by TNRCC to build a new plant in the Spring Branch and Smithson Valley area — several miles west of US. 281 and Texas 46. lf granted the “standard exemption,” Ingram would be permitted to operate its facility under less strin gent regulatory standards. TNRCC generally grants standard exemptions to facilities with lower air emissions, or less than 25 tons See RULING/3Directions Take Interstate 35 north through downtown Austin to Yeager Lane. Exit Yeager and take the turnaround to get on the southbound access road. The TNRCC office complex is a 1/2 mile south of the 1-35    ' intersection with Yeager The meeting is scheduled to take place in Building E, room 201 F. Building E is immediately to the north of a multilevel parking garageNEW<j^da!sNFELS E w,”u * EL POSO, TX 73903__ __ El-Herald-Zeitung Council denies new storage tank ordinance By Chrmtma Minor Staff Writer In approximately one hour Monday night, New Braunfels City Council met, approved and adjourned its meeting, covering issues dealing with water use, the municipal airport and sanitation. Council failed to approve the second reading of an amendment to the Code of Ordinances banning all new underground storage tanks of regulated substances over the Edwards Aquifer Recharge Zone because they could possibly cause problems of leakage into drinking water. Councilman Randy Vanstory said the ordinance did not allow for competition for any gas stations over the recharge zone. “Gas stations across the street from each other will usually have similar prices,” he said. “With this (ordinance), there will not be any gas stations across the street from those already there.” The storage tanks are very safe, had to be approved by many people and there were certain restrictions that applied, he said “lf the ordinance is passed, it will provide adequate protection of the Aquifer,” Vanstory said. Councilwoman Juliet Watson said she wanted protection of the water. “It’s vital to our existence,” she said. “Sometimes the storage tanks don’t always work. I think the city is saying they don’t want to take that chance.” City attorney Floyd Akers said there were two gas stations over the recharge zone, with one currently being built. “The new one has met the TNRCC (Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission) and city requirements,” Akers said. “This ordinance is not against gas sta- See COUNCIL/3 VANSTORY WATSON Living on Plans being made to expand city’s 8-mile bypass the Loopf I YlESDAY ^oina* CountY s>ncc 1852 50 cents Fire damages store in Gruene By Heather Todd Staff Writer An early morning fire caused about $25,000 in damage to an antique store in Gruene on Monday. Lee Lane, an investigator with New Braunfels Fire and Rescue, said a blaze at Girlfriends, 1308 Gruene Road, was reported at 2:35 a.m. Monday. Lane said someone working at another business reported the fire. Employees of Gruene General Store, Gruene Hails and Gruene Mansion Inn and Restaurant said they were not in the area at the time of the fire. Crystal Derouen with Gruene Music Hall said she and several custodial workers were closing about 10:30 p.m. Sunday and did not see any indications of a fire. Lane said the fire damaged only the front portion of Girlfriends. “The cause of the fire is undetermined right now,” he said. “The insurance company is taking over the investigation.” Lane said no indication of arson was found at the scene. Businesses in die back of the two-sto-ry building received heavy smoke dam age, he said. LaMae Heels of Robert West Builder Inc., a business inside the building, said the owners of Girlfriends were Nora Wheatley and Jerry Berry. Neither Wheadey nor Berry could not be reached for comment. Heels said she learned of the fire about 6 a.m., when the owners of Girlfriends called her at home. The owners of For Your Nails Only, a nail salon in the building, also could not be reached for comment. The antique store was closed Monday. By Christina Minor Staff Writer The secret life of Loop 337 is quickly becoming well-known to local residents and commuters. When traffic is a mess on Interstate 35, Loop 337 is used as a short cut around town. The loop also serves as one of the main routes to historic Gruene, providing a more scenic trip. The 8-mile loop runs from Texas 46 West to Interstate 35 South and might be extended in the near future. Greg Malatek, resident engineer, of the Texas Department of Transportation, said Loop 337 West could be extended east of 1-35 and north past the New Braunfels Airport to Farm-to-Mar-ket Road 306. “The idea is to give people access to the airport,” Malatek said. “Ifs in the master plan, but first a feasibility study has to be done, his not on the books right now, but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen later on.” The extended loop also would help those traveling on Farm-to-Market Road 1044. According to Malatek, the first leg of the Loop 337 extension would be from FM 1044 to Rueckle Road. “Instead of having to turn, go down to Walnut then come back up to go south on 1-35, it will make it easier to get on the highway,” Malatek said. But first, the loop is going to get a facelift. This summer, Loop 337 from Castlewood Drive to just west of Oakwood Baptist Church will be widened to create a center left turn lane, leaving only a two-inch shoulder on each side. Cost of the project is about $35,000. “We will resurface and restripe the road,” Malatek said. “Private citizens are the ones who started us on the idea.” No major construction is planned for that area of the loop, because funds for See LOOP/3 Accident Prone Streets in New Braunfels • Sooth Seguin Avenue • frontage roads and underpasses at Interstate 35 • Walnut Avenue underpass at Interstate 35 • Landa Street from Landa Park to Walnut Avenue (400 block) • Walnut Avenue and West San Antonio Street • Garden Street and Seguin Avenue • left turns at Interstate 35 underpasses An average of 7.7 accidents are reported each day. A total of 2,810 accidents were reported in 1998. Information provided by Ll John Wommack, New Braunfels Police Department. Vol, 148, No. 163    12    pages    in    I    section    June    29,    1999 Hello fans NBA Finals MVP Tim Duncan (right) and both the real and cardboard Antonio Daniels wave to supporters during Sunday’s Spurs victory parade on the Riverwalk. For more on the big celebration, see page 8. TOM ERICKSON/ Herald-Zeitung Loop 337 near Castlewood Drive (above) will be widened this summer, creating a center turn lane. Future plans include expanding the 8-mile loop around the city, extending it east of Interstate 35. on the roads we drive Dangerous curves Wednesday: A closer look at Landa Street and Main Plaza ;