New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - March 21, 2004, New Braunfels, Texas
MARCH 21, 2004
Event volunteers say "Lettuce Entertain You." The annual event features seminars on growing and cooking with herbs. Page IC
Ordinance key to Gruene parking fray
Lino Perez Jr. ic. his home in Venezuela to train in New Braunfels. Now he heads to LA for his biggest boxing match yet. Page IB
Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852.
Vol. 153, No. 113 32 pages, 4 sections
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B Pat Molak and Mary Jane Nalley own several Gruene businesses. including the Gristmill restaurant and Gruene Hall.
■ Molak has appealed building permits and sued the city in attempts to block the New Braunfels Museum of Art and Music from locating in Gruene.
■ Almost bankrupted by legal battles, the museum received a $ 1 million donation that kept it open
■ Amending the city’s off-site parking ordinance to change the distance from a business to its parking and clarifying how that distance is measured would clear a hurdle for a restaurant to open on museum property.
■ The museum is dependent on the restaurant because of rental revenue
■ Attorneys for Molak. including his former counsel Carter Casteel, have argued against the amendment
■ Council votes on the ordinance Monday
City’s vote on off-site parking will either help or hurt museum
By Scott Mahon
While the New Braunfels City Council has been flooded with parking issues, the eye of the stonn is centered over Gruene.
Pat Molak, who along with partner Mary lane Nalley owns several businesses in Gruene, has been fighting the New Braunfels Museum of Art and Music since it relocated to the historic district last year from downtown New Braunfels.
Molak and Nalley own Gristmill River Restaurant, Cotton Eyed Joe’s, Gruene I fall and the Gruene Antique Store. They are credited for making Gruene what it is today — a quaint historic district that draws visitors and tourists from all over.
Patrick S. Molak Corp. owns the largest and most visible off-site parking lot in Gruene, which is centrally located and allows shoppers to park in one spot and walk to all the various shops.
Museum officials say Molak fears competition from a restaurant at the museum.
“Pat Molak doesn’t want the museum’s restaurant to open,” museum board vice president Roger'Bittie said. “I don’t think it’s going to impact his business. In fact, the more there is to do in Gruene, the better.”
Nalley denied any rift between Molak and the museum.
“Gruene can benefit from a new restaurant,” she said. “Speculation about a rift is without any foundation.... (The other
See MEEKIN*. Page 5A
DAVID INGRAM 'Herald-Zeitung
Ron Hayworth, city crossing guard and a retired educator, escorts a Memorial Elementary student across Northpark Ridge Friday afternoon. Hayworth says as many as 700 cars pass by his post each day
Residents blow the horn on trains that won't budge, blocking the only entrance to their neighborhood.
Thanks to them, you dont have to be chicken to cross the road
Hayworth always has a smile and a wave for passing motorists.
By Dylan Jim6nez
When the three Memorial schools let out at 3:45 each afternoon, the race out of school can be dangerous.
Crossing guards are crucial in ushering Memorial elementary, primary and intermediate students safely across busy Walnut Avenue and County Line Road.
Ron Hayworth, a retired educator, got the crossing
guard job so he could interact with the students. I Ie knows many of them by name.
Ile stands on the corner ut Walnut and Northpark Ridge about 3 p.m., donning his crossing guard cap and shirt and a handheld stop sign.
The 20 mph sign turns on, and Hayworth puts out red cones to caution drivers.
In the mornings, he’s out there at 7:55.
“My first little one comes in on his bicycle at five to eight,”
I iayworth said. "So I know I have to be here for him.
New Braunfels Police Department employs nine crossing guards who work hour-and-a-half shifts at New Braunfels schools.
Crossing guards watch a series of videos and take verbal instruction.
Then they train with the supervisor and apprentice with another guard, learning on the job.
See CROSSING Page 5A
Big changes in store for city, ISD taxpayers
AT A GLANCE
■ New Brauntels Independent School District budget talks
■ 6 p m Monday
■ The Education Center
Boardroom, 4 JO W Mill St.
■ Now Braunfels City Council meeting
■ 6 30 p m Monday
■ Council Chambers, Municipal Building, 424 S. Casten Ave
B Not enough information to understand long-term implications of tile chariges/4A
By Dylan Jiminu and Scott Mahon
faxes and death — two of life’s certainties.
In New Braunfels, however, when taxes are levied and how much homeowners will pay are about to get much less certain.
I iomeowners stand to get a significantly larger tax bill from one government entity and six-month tax break from another.
Both the New Braunfels City Council and the New Braunfels independent School District Board of Trustees are considering changes to their fiscal calendars — when it starts, when it ends, when tax bills go out and when payments are due.
The move is necessary to save costs associated with running a tax office and to generate more tax revenue.
The switch is anything but simple, and the decisions both agencies make will have a dramatic impact on taxpayers' pocket-books. Each is considering a different option.
A financial consultant hired to help NBISD reduce a projected $1.2 million budget deficit recommended the district close its tax office.
The county Tax Assessor/Collector’s Office would take over the duties.
The district would save $80,000 each year by closing the office. However, initial costs associated with die transition put first-year savings at just $5,400.
One of the three tax office employees is retiring this spring, and the others would be reassigned widiin the district.
Officials also are discussing the possibility of aligning the district’s tax year with the rest of the school districts in Texas. Every other school district in the state levies taxes in October based on values from the same year.
NBISD levies taxes four months earlier — in June, right before the end of the district’s fiscal year. Taxes are based on
See TAXES, Page 5A
DAVID INGRAM Herald Zertung
Sts Peter and Paul Catholic School third-grader Katie Knueper reads the poem Arbor Day to the crowd gath ered at an Arbor Day ceremony Friday in Landa Park
New Braunfels. TX
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