New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - March 8, 1996, New Braunfels, Texas
FRIDAYAlamo Heights soccer team takes on Unicorns for district lead. Page 5.
The Plaza Bandstand
14 pages in one section ■ Friday, March 8,1996
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Serving Comal County and surrounding areas for more ,u. • 144 years ■ Home of CLOBIE CAYSE
Vol. 144, No. 84
Birthday wishes from the Herald-Zeitung!
The New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung extends birthday wishes to: Clobie Cayse, Glenn Mack Sr., Aleida Cortez (Saturday, 2 years), Kendra Clayton (8 years), Cy Chapa, Juan N. Enrique, and Tammi Smith.
Mold —1,340 Elm —0 Cedar — trace Ash — trace Mulberry —trace Hackberry — trace (Pollen measured in parts per cubic meter of air. Readings taken yesterday. Information provided by Dr. Frank Hampel.)
Comal River—242 cubic feet per second, same as yesterday.
Edwards Aquifer Panther Canyon Well — 624.25 feet above sea level, down
Coulter family benefit planned for Saturday
A benefit for an educational fund for the children of Michael E. Coulter will be held March 9 from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Watering Hole at 1319 Old McQueeney Road.
Barbecue plates will be served from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. A live auction will be held throughout the evening.
Coulter passed away Jan.
17 from cancer. His wife and two children were left with no life insurance. Coulter was a 1974 graduate of New Braunfels High School. His wife, Joella (Wideman) was a 1975 graduate of NBHS.
His children, Michael ll, and Elizabeth Dawn are in their senior and freshman years at LaVernia High School.
For more information, or to make a donation, call Betty Becka at 609-0127 or Arthur Brinkkoeter at 629-3788.
Christian Women’s Club to hold luncheon
The Christian Women s Club will hold a luncheon Tuesday, March 12 from 11 a m. to 1 p.m. at the Holiday Inn for $7. Speakers: Carol Johnson and Renee Counch on 'Updating Your Home on a Budget'; Becky Voges on 'Uplifting Your Spirit With Song'; and Jan Thurner on 'Unleashing Joyfully the Reins of Your Life. Reservations needed by March 8. Call Jan at 899-2277. Free nursery, call 935-4337.
Circus is heading to Seguin
The Guadalupe County Republicans will sponsor performances by the King Royal Brothers Circus Friday, March 8 in Seguin, across from the Department of Public Safety Office at the Highway 123 Bypass and Kingsbury Street.
Advance discounted tickets can be obtained by calling 303-7371. Tickets at the door will cost more, and seating may be subject to ticket availability.
Lake Dunlap Property Owners mooting
The Lake Dunlap Property Owners Association annual general membership meeting and election of officers will be held at Riverbend Park at 7 p.m. Friday, March 15.
Help sort books
The Friends of the Library will meet to sort books Tuesday, March 12 at 9 a.m.
The new address is 1375 Wald Road, at AAA Storage.
County finalizes plans for new park
By DENISE DZIUK
The Comal County Commissioners took one more step towards the completion of a park for residents in the Bulverde-Spring Branch area at their meeting Thursday when they unanimously approved a Park Development Plan.
Tom Homseth, parks manager for the Parks Advisory Committee told the "commissioners the committee met about a month ago to work on developing plans for the use of the land. He said representatives from several of the local sports organizations that will be using the facilities were also present
to give input on the plan.
“What came out of that committee meeting was a sub-committee to develop a plan taking into consideration everyone’s input,” said Homseth.
Tom Turk, who served on the subcommittee, presented the plan to the Commissioners. According to the plan, seven soccer fields will be built at the far end of the park. Next to this will be a volleyball playscape, a concession area, and restrooms, followed by two football fields and a softball field. The section of the land closest to Highway 281 will be reserved as a picnic area, and a walking track will be built around the perimeter of the park.
“We plan to make pretty good use of
the land,” said Turk.
Turk also said that the Little League organizations were present but decided they did not need a field at this time. However, he said they expressed interest in building a field if the park is expanded.
“I wanted you to know that there was a lot of input on this,” said Homseth. “The people who are going to use it were there deciding what to do.”
Homseth said that despite the detailed plan, the entire thing will not be implemented all at one time. He said the county is drawing up Facilities Use Agreements. According to the agreements, the county will provide
‘The people who are going to use it were there deciding what to do.’
— Tom Homseth
the land, entryway, parking and restrooms. He said the various organizations planning to use the park will then be responsible for building the fields using their funds and equipment. He said the upkeep would also be addressed in the agreement.
“We’ll start work as soon as we’re allowed too,” said Turk.
Homseth said the county still has $9,000 available to use on this park. He said the money will go toward grating an entryway and setting up a grassy parking area. He said the other improvements will be included in the next budget process.
“It will start off real slow,” said Homseth. “The parks advisory board felt this was a good thing...to let the other groups get in first and start their improvements.”
County Attorney Nathan Rheinlan-der said the agreements should not take long in preparing. He said he is using several models from the city of Victoria, and it is “just a matter of pasting and cutting.”
Herald-Zeitung photo by MICHAEL DARNALL
Jean Prochazka, Jaroslav Polivka, Marie Burian, Vladimir Burian, and Henry Prochazka.
Czech It Out
Visitors savor the differences between Texas and their homeland
By DENISE DZIUK
Three visitors staying in town with their cousin for a couple of weeks are learning about the local way of life, and finding out there are distinct differences from what they are used to.
Henry Prochazka and his wife Jean, of New Braunfels, are playing host to relatives from the Czech Republic in Europe. Jaroslav Polivka lives on the outskirts of Prague. Marie Burian and her husband Vladimir live about 90 miles from Prague in the Eastern part of Bohemia. The three came to town to spend 13 days with the Prochazkas, and will leave on Tuesday.
“My wife and I have been over there three times, and they’ve been wanting to come here to see where we live, so we decided to bnng them over,” said Prochazka.
While they have been here, the Prochazkas have shown them a variety of things, ranging from the Comal Springs to the factory stores and a trolley ride in San Antonio. Marie and Vladimir have never been out of their country, and there are several differences that they
have all noticed between New Braunfels and their home.
Polivka said one of his favorite things about the area is the difference in the environment. Prochazka explained that in their home country, coal is burned as a fuel. He said this causes the quality of the environment to decrease. He said Polivka has noticed a difference here.
“He likes our clean air and surroundings,” said Prochazka, who acted as translator.
Polivka also noticed that here, people live in rural areas on their farms. In his homeland, everyone lives in the village and goes out to the farm to work. Vladimir recognized a difference in automobiles. Cars here are much larger. They are also automatic, compared to the standards he is used to seeing. They also added that driven* are more courteous in America.
“They better be, the cars are a lot more expensive here,” said Prochazka.
Another big difference that Polivka noticed was that “here everything is new and has a lot of yard space ” Proc-nazka explained that any building that is not 500 years old in the Czech Republic is considered young. He also said it is more cramped in their homeland.
“When we went to Gruene Hall, I told him it was the oldest dance hall
around. It’s about 200 years old...That’s young for them,” said Prochazka.
Mane said the thing she noneed, and liked the best, was when she went to watch a gymnastics class. She said she liked the involvement of the young kids in dancing and gymnastics.
There were more differences, including the weather, but all three said they were “really enjoying it here,” and would like to come back some day. The Prochazkas were not able to show the group everything they wanted to see due to time constraints. However, they do plan to do additional sightseeing before the three leave on Tuesday.
“We’ll give them some good memories of the area anyway,” said Prochazka.
The group also will not go back empty handed.
Vladimir said has already taken over IOO pictures, and Polivka has taken a couple of rolls also. In addition, Prochazka said they bought something from every place they went.
He said they had to get a t-shirt with something about Texas and New Braunfels on it.
He added that they liked the colorful ones as long as they did not have red in them, which is the color representing the old communist regime in their home country.
Drought could threaten species
By SUSAN FLYNT ENGLAND
Comal County residents have already started to worry about their lawns, their crops and their livestock — but the human species will probably survive if a serious drought hits the area this summer. Some unique area animal species may not be so lucky, according to Dr. David Bowles, endemic species biologist for Texas Parks & Wildlife.
‘Species that last lived on the surface during the last ice age retreated underground to the aquifer.’
— Jim Fries, Nature Conservancy
“As you know, the karst springs in our area h ive a high concentration of endemic aquatic species,” Bowles said.
Translation — the Comal and San Marcos springs are homes to species that live no other place in the world.
“Biologists will tell you that (the Edwards Aquifer) is the world’s most ecologically diverse underground water system,” said Jim Fries, bioreserve director for the Nature Conservancy in Austin.
Species that live at the spring heads, like the infamous fountain darter, will be most susceptible to drought conditions, Bowles said. They depend on very specific water temperatures, water levels and plant life.
“The things that are dependent on surface water — that’s their habitat,” Bowles said. “When it goes, they go. Fountain darters etc. are seriously impacted if not completely wiped out.”
Scientists aren’t sure w hat will happen to some other spring species, like the Comal Springs Riffle Beetle. “It’s a possibility that they burrow down into the substrate,” Bowles said. The 1956 drought lasted about six months. “There may have been just enough moisture to keep them alive,” he said.
There arc 44 endemic aquatic species now identified in the Edwards Aquifer area. “There are some unusual and fairly unique creatures.” Bowles said. "Some are living completely within the aquifer ”
With the profusion of caves on the Edwards Plateau, there are likely many more endemic species yet to be discovered, he said.
The unique aquifer creatures could hold clues to the history of evolution. “Some aquifer species have a neotropical affinity,” Bowles said. That means their closest living relatives are in southern Mexico. One small shnmp-like creature’s closest living relative is found in the Mediterranean Sea, he said.
“Species that last lived on the surface during the last ice age retreated underground to the aquifer,” Fries said.
Underground animals may be less vulnerable to drought than those living in the springs, Bowles said. "As long as the water quality’s good — as long as there’s water, the aquifer species may survive."
“Most people think in two dimensions,’’ Fries said. "In the Hill Country you have to think not only what’s in front of you and beside you, but also below ” “Some of these creatures are truly unique,” Bowles said. “We’ve got a lot to learn."
Job fair at Schlitterbahn tomorrow
complex has openings for a wide variety of jobs. Most positions coincide with Schlitterbahn Waterpark’s season, April 27 through September 15. Applicants must be at least 16 years old and should bnng a photo ID and social secunty number. For more information, call Schlitterbahn at (210) 625-2351, ext. 526.
Schlitterbahn Waterpark will hold a job fair from IO a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, March 9 at the park’s employee cafe on Liberty Street in New Braunfels. Schlitterbahn representatives will take applications for approximately 1,500 seasonal fulltime and part-time jobs.
The 65-acre waterpark and resort
Garden Ridge council considers new impact fees for developers
By DAVID DEKUNDER
GARDEN RIDGE — To help cover the costs of capital improvements it wants to make for its water system, the Garden Ridge City Council voted to study the feasibility of implementing impact fees in the Alture.
The council voted 5-0 to start a feasibility study into the matter at its meeting on Wednesday night.
Inpact fees can be assessed to housing developers to help pay for water connections a city provides for a lot
and help pay for improvements in its water system. Currently, the city of Garden Ridge is looking into the possibility of building a 12-inch water transmission line and elevated storage tank within the next IO years.
Councilwoman Georgia Eckhardt said the council needs more time and research before it can make an educated decision.
“I think we need to have a joint session with the (city) water commission and the planning and zoning commission to get more input from them,” Eckhardt said.
City Engineer Don Rauschuber briefed the council on a report he had done on the advantages and disadvantages of the impact fee.
"Growth and development will happen,” Rauschuber said. “The question is, ‘How will you pay for that growth and development?’
The impact fees, Rauschuber said, can be used for water improvements, sewage and drainage. The impact fees cannot be used for city parks, maintenance or construction of new buildings. Based on 10-year growth calculations, Rauschuber said the city could
assess a fee between $1,500 and $2,000 per housing development lot.
“The advantage of having the fee is that it would represent an additional source of income (for the city),” Rauschuber said. “When you collect the fee, you would have less reliance on the issuance of bonds.”
Rauschuber said the disadvantages of the impact fee would be that the city would have two to five years to spend on the improvements it wants to make. lf the city does not get the revenue it wants from the impact fees because of slow growth or if it tries to float a bond
issue for water improvements and it fails, Rauschuber said the city would have to give back the impact fee money plus interest to the developers.
Before any impact fees could be implemented, the city would have to appoint a five-member advisory committee which would have to have at least two members from the real estate industry. Then public hearings would have to be held before the council could vote on the issue, which could cost $20,000—$30,000 in legal expenses, Rauschuber said.Right to die depends on where you live. See Page 4.