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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - March 11, 2011, New Braunfels, Texas Page 4 — Herald-Zeituno — Friday, March 11, 2011 FORUM Our Opinion No contested races in city Monday is the* last day for candidates to file for the New Braunfels mayoral and city council races. There are two council seats on the May ballot and the mayoral seat. As of this writing, only one candidate has filed for each seat. If no one else decides to run, that will mean after the May 14 election the only member of city council who actually won his seat in a race will be Mark Goodner. Goodlier won his hid fora second term as the District 2 representative in May 2010 after defeating challenger Richard l.a Rochelle. Voters chose Goodner by a more than two-to-one margin, with the city councilor receiving 306 votes to I.a Rochelle's 131. That’s right. Unless someone steps up, after May 14 every city councilor save one will have run unopposed. While the people who have chosen to run are good candidates, it is a sad situation when so few people are willing to volunteer to lead New Braunfels. Yes, those who run for city council put themselves on the public stage for criticism from their fellow citizens. Yes, it is a demanding job — if done well. But it ’s also rewarding to shape and steer the future of the community you love. A cursory l(x>k at the 2010 census figures, or an early morning glance at 1-35, will tell you New Braunfels is changing — fast. At a time like this, those who love this place should be clamoring to do what they can to help. Instead, we see an empty ballot. Mayoral candidate Gale I’ospisil, incumbent District 6 (Aty Councilor Steven I )igges, and District 5 city council bopeful Bryan Miranda are the only people who have filed. Applications can be obtained from the city secretary's office at the Municipal Building, 424 S. Castell Ave. ()ffice hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Application forms also can be obtained from the Secretary of State’s website, There is no filing fee. Winning candidates will serve three-year terms. Herald-Zeitung Serving New Braunfels and ( omal ( .aunty since 1852, New Braunfels Zeitung was founded 1852; New Braunfels Herald was founded 1890 the two papers merged in 1957 and printed in both German and English until 1958 ; Editor and Publisher I Managing Editor I Circulation Director j Business Manager Doug Toney Autumn Phillips Jeff Fowler Rosie Willingham A cursory twk at the 2010 census figures, or an early morning glance at 1-35, will tell you New Braunfels is changing — fast. At a time like this, those who love this place should l>e clamoring to do what they can to help. LETTERS POLICY ■ Letters must be 250 words or less. ■The Herald-Zeitung reserves the right to edit all submissions. ■ Guest columns should be 500 words or less and must be accompanied by a photo. ■ Address and telephone number must be included so authorship can be confirmed. Mail letters to: Letters to Editor do Herald Zeitung RO. Drawer 311328 New Braunfels, TX 78131-1328 Fax them to: (830) 606-3413 e-mail them to: news@herald- Letters to the Editor Is the City of New Braunfels trying to set up a monopoly at airport? It’s time to stand up for free enterprise at New Braunfels Municipal Airport. There is a battle shaping up at the airport that can only be described as epic. The airport manager, and presumably the city, versus a private business that provides the only full-service, fixed-base operation at the airport. While skirmishes and differences of opinion have cropped up from time to time between airport management and New Braunfels Aero Service, the latest round of obstruction by the city is nothing short of disturbing. Your paper has covered the shutdown of the leased fuel farm and earlier moves by the city, but this week’s Temporary Restraining Order that prohibits New Braunfels Aero from dispensing fuel is a hideous restraint of trade and a heavy-handed mow by the city to obtain a complete monopoly on fuel sales. There is no doubt some procedural errors or omissions occurred, but waving the safety flag and using the court as an emergency measure is out of line and abusive. This is another flagrant move by the city to stifle competition, and it threatens every business and customer at the airport. Jobs at New Braunfels Aero have been lost and more are threatened. Uncertainty as to the ongoing poor business environment at the airport is causing other businesses to question the airport’s viability. The only overlap between the city and New Braunfels Aero is fuel sales, so is it coincidence that the city is waging a fuel battle? I think not. Fuel sales are where the money is. Fuel sales enable New Braunfels Aero’s other services. The city provides none of these to the flying public. A monopoly on fuel sales by the city would be an unmitigated disaster. Ask yourself what you’d be paying for auto gas if the government owned all the gas stations! Dan Kelly LaVertiia Federal government should stick to doing what it was created to do I just have to wonder where Stephen Baird has been these last several months when he writes that the Bush tax cuts should be allowed to expire at the end of 2012. The message from voters in November 2010 across the country was loud and clear to anyone who is listening: Stop the spending. There is absolutely no reason to raise taxes on anyone. The problem in Washington, DC with the budget is too much spending, not that we have too few taxes. Before we consider any new taxes, we need to cut budget items like the Department of Education, the Department of Energy, the Small Business Administration; the list could go on and on for a long time. Simply put, the federal government has gotten too involved with our daily lives and is sucking up a lot of available money in taxes that businesses could use to become more efficient, to expand production, and to hire new employees. I have to laugh (if it wasn’t so sad) when 1 hear President Obama talking about the government needs to live within its means. What he means is we need to raise taxes and spending on things that the government thinks are important — like high-speed rail. He is pushing billions to build high-speed rail projects that several states have already said they don’t want, and will not take the money. Where in the Constitution does it say the federal government should build (or force the states to build) railroads? Let’s get back to the things the federal government is constitutionally mandated to do and leave the other things for the states to do. That will take care of the budget. David Holland New Braunfels ‘Scrooge ain’t broke, and neither is the U.S. government’ Maybe instead of playing budgetary chicken with congressional Republicans, the White House should search carnival sideshows and TV shopping channels for a Democratic Glenn Beck. Any glib pitchman could outline a Republican scheme to sabotage the U.S. economy to gain political power far more plausible than Beck’s shaggy-dog conspiracies. Think about it. 1 lere we are three years into the hardest times since the 1930s, caused by a nationwide real estate bubble and Wall Street scams that would make a blackjack dealer blush. (Actually, come to think of it, unemployment in Las Vegas remains among the nation's worst.) Catastrophe was averted. The economy’s mending. Nevertheless, nationwide unemployment hovers near 9 percent and the recovery’s limping at a pace that will take years to restore normalcy. So what do Republicans want to do? Why, to slash spending and put thousands of government employees on the unemployment lines to compete with millions already standing there, of course. If that makes sense to you, then you’ve been successfully hoodwinked by what I call the Scrooge McDuck conspiracy. Uncle Scrooge, if you recall, was Donald Duck’s tightwad zillionaire relative who wore spats GENELYONS Arkansas Democrat-Gazette columnist Gene Lyons is a National Magazine Award winner and co-author of "The Hunting of the President."E-mail Lyons at eugene-lyo \ i s2<9ya and a top hat even when dabbling in his bullion vault. Washington’s filled with McDuck-sponsored think tanks with names like “The Heritage Foundation" and “Americans for Prosperity.’’ Staffed by hired propagandists and bespoke economists, their fundamental message never changes: more wealth for Scrooge. For some of these jokers, there’s not enough money in the world. So sure they want to put people out of work during a recession. Fear creates a placid, easily dominated workforce. Some call it "crisis capitalism.” Anyway, before last November’s election, GOP Speaker John Boehner promised “a relentless focus on creating jobs.” Informed that reliable estimates predict that GOP-sponsored budget cuts would result in upwards of700,000 lost jobs, Boehner responded, “So be it.” Translation: quack, quack, quack. The speaker claimed that America’s “broke" and simply can’t afford current budget deficits. Yeah, well, Scrooge ain’t broke, and neither is the U.S. government. Anyway, enough about cartoon ducks. Here’s a little fish story, a parable if you will, that demonstrates home truths about government spending and economic prosperity: In Arkansas, where I live, trout fish- ing is both a major pastime and source of tourist income. Although rainbow trout are a cold-water species not native to the state, world-record fish are taken frequently. Just writing about it makes me want to load my gear and head for Calico Rock. Anyway, whether you know it or not, these are government trout. Your tax dollars created and maintain this matchless resource. How it started was that mainly under President Eisenhower, the Army Corps of Engineers built several flood-control and power-generating dams in the White River basin: an Arkansas and Missouri version of the TVA. The dams created a string of picturesque lakes straddling the state border: Beaver Fork, Table Rock, Bull Shoals and Norfork. Each became a magnet for real-estate developments and resort communities, transforming one of the nation's historically poorest regions. No government dams, no Branson, Mo., is one way of thinking about it. My child bride cherishes a snapshot she took of President Kennedy when he came to Arkansas to dedicate Greer’s Ferry Dam. However, the dams also submerged thousands of acres of cropland and drowned an excellent smallmouth bass fishery. Water emerging from lake depths to power electrical generation is too cold for native fishes. Hence federal trout hatcheries, offered to mitigate environmental damage. So now (surprise!) the Obama administration wants to cut the Fish & Wildlife Service budget, potentially closing fish hatcheries that keep it all going. Trout can’t breed in dam tailwa-ters and must be constantly restocked. Should hatcheries close, the fish would soon vanish. So would the economic benefit to dozens of communities along the White and Little Red Rivers. It’s an absurd false economy. Resort operators say they pay more in taxes than the cost of operating the hatcheries. (Roughly $7 million is involved.) Arkansas Democrat-Gazette outdoor columnist Bryan Hendricks argues that "closing those hatcheries would exacerbate the dams’ negative environmental impact and would essentially constitute a breach of contract.” So did some Obama political appointee decide: "To hell with Arkansas. They didn’t vote for us anyway. Let them ask the tea party to pay.”? It could be. Almost certainly, a way will be found to keep the hatcheries open, almost certainly involving tax money. Contrary to McDuck and tea party dogma, American prosperity has always depended upon countless such examples of public/private synergy. There are similar stories all across the country. Meanwhile, measured as a percentage of GDP, federal tax revenue is at 14.4 percent—the lowest since 1950. (The 40-year average is 18 percent.) Marginal income tax rates on the McDuck class top out at 35 percent- -compared to 50 percent under President Reagan. Only Mexico and Chile, among industrial nations, pay less. Is that the new competition? United States Government PRESIDENT ■ Barack Obama 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, D.C. 20500 SENATE ■ Kay Bailey Hutchison Russell Senate Office Building Room 284 Washington, D.C. 20510 Telephone: (202) 224-5922 Fax: (202) 224 0776 Web: (Send e-mails through Web site.) SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 145 Duncan Drive, Suite 120 San Antonio 78226 Telephone: (210) 340-2885 Fex: (210) 349-6753 ■ John Cornyn Russell Senate-Hart Room 517 Washington, D.C. 20510 Telephone: (202) 224-2934 Fax: (202) 228-2856 Web: (Send e-mails through Web site.) AUSTIN OFFICE: 221 West Sixth St., Suite 1530 Austin 78701 Telephone: (512) 469-6034 Fax: (512) 469-6020 SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 600 Navarro, Suite 210 San Antonio 78205 Telephone: (210) 224-7485 Fex: (210) 224-8569 CONGRESSMAN ■ Lamar Smith Rayburn House Office Building Room 2409 Washington, D.C. 20515 Telephone: (202) 225-4236 Fax: (202) 225-8628 Web address: (Send e-mails through Web site.) SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 1100 NE Loop 410, Suite 640 San Antonio 78209 Telephone: (210) 821-5024 Fex: (210) 821-5947 ■ Henry Cuellar 1404 Longworth House Office Building Washington, D.C. 20515 Telephone: (202) 225-1640 Fex: (202) 225-1641 Web address: SAN ANTONIO OFFICE: 615 E. Houston St. San Antonio 78205 Telephone: (210) 271-2851 Fax: (210) 277-6671 GOVERNOR maenaaMe esas aaaaauMBUa augi HOW TO vOMTACT Texas Government ■ Rick Perry State Capitol, Room 2S.1 P.O. Box 12428 Austin 78711 Telephone: (800) 843-5789 Fax: (512) 463-1849 STATE HOUSE ■ Doug Miller EXT E1.216 P.O. Box 2910 Austin TX 78768-2910 Telephone: (512) 463-0325 Fax: (512)463-5896 STATE SENATE ■ Jeff Wentworth 1250 NE Loop 410, Suite 925 San Antonio 78209 Telephone: (210) 826-7800 WHILE IN AUSTIN: Telephone: 888-824-6984 E-mail address: jeff. wentworth NEW BRAUNFELS CITY COUNCIL 424 S. Castell Ave. P.O. Box 311747, New Braunfels, TX 78131-1747 (830) 221-4000 ■ Mayor Bruce Boyer [email protected] Telephone: Extension 4507 ■ Dist. 1 Councilor Richard Zapata rzapata @ Telephone: Extension 4501 ■ Dist. 2 Councilor Mark Goodner [email protected] Telephone: Extension 4502 ■ Dist. 3 Councilor Mike Ybarra mybarra @ Telephone: Extension 4503 ■ Dist. 4 Councilor Sandy Nolte snolte @ Telephone: Extension 4504 ■ Dist. 6 Councilor Kathleen Krueger [email protected] Telephone: Extension 4505 ■ Dist. 6 Councilor Steven Digoes [email protected] Telephone: Extension Comal County Commissioners' Court 199 Main Plaza New Braunfels,Tx 78130 (830) 221-1100 ■ COUNTY JUDGE SHERMAN KRAUSE [email protected] Telephone: (830) 221-1105 ■ PCT. 1 COMMISSIONER DONNA ECCLES0N [email protected] Telephone: (830) 221-1101 ■ PCT. 2 COMMISSIONER SCOn HAAG [email protected] Telephone: (830) 221-1102 ■ PCT. 3 COMMISSIONER GREG PARKER [email protected] Telephone: (830) 221-1103 ■ PCT. 4 COMMISSIONER JAN KENNADY [email protected] Telephone: (830) 221-1104 ;