New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 1, 1991, New Braunfels, Texas
HeraldZeltung, New Braunfels, Texas
Wednesday, May I, 1991
Senate expands optometrists role
AUSTIN (AP) — A bill to authorize optometrists to treat eye disorders was approved by the Senate after the bill sponsor said rural residents should not have to drive long distances to be treated by an eye specialist.
Sen. Bob Glasgow, D-Stephcnville, said Tuesday optometrists know more about the eye than many physicians but are restricted in what they can do.
Glasgow’s bill was brought up on a 23-8 vote and was sent to the House on voice vote.
The measure would allow optometrists to administer topical steroids as they have been allowed to do in 22 other states, Glasgow said.
Optometrists, who are authorized to prescribe glasses to correct defects in vision, are well trained because they must undergo a four-year program that includes one year of clinical work, Glasgow said.
Ophthalmologists are medical doctors who specialize in treatment of eye diseases.
Poisoned tree to lose dead limbs
AUSTIN (AP) — Two years after being poisoned with the herbicide Velpar, most of the Treaty Oak will be hacked into pieces next week as city workers with chain saws trim off dead portions of the centuries-old live oak.
With tree experts, sawmill officials, and possibly a national television audience looking on, the tree will become a shadow of its former self.
About 7S percent of the tree is dead as a result of the attack with Velpar, which is designed to kill hardwood trees. The poisoning gained national and international attention.
The dead portions, including limbs that are larger than most trees, will be cut, dried in a kiln and eventually used in several city projects, possibly including artistic and fund-raising proposals.
We’re probably going to start big-time on Tuesday,” said John Giedraitis, the city forester who directed months of unprecedented treatment that saved one large limb system of the tree. That section of Treaty Oak is flourishing, and is expected to live indefinitely.
“It will take a couple of days” to remove the dead limbs, Giedraitis said. ‘‘It’s a big job.”
The man convicted of poisoning the Treaty Oak, which according to legend was where Stephen F. Austin signed a treaty with Indians, remains in prison.
Paul Stedman Cullen last year was sentenced to nine years, and he was denied parole in March.
Tot doused with flaming gasoline
LOS EBANOS, Texas (AP) — A South Texas toddler remains in critical condition in a San Antonio hospital after being doused with burning gasoline by an 8-year-old playmate.
The 2-year-old victim, Fidencio de la Garza, of Los Ebanos, was in critical condition in the bum unit of Brooke Army Medical Center Tuesday following the Monday incident. He was burned over 40 percent of his body.
Witnesses told Hidalgo County Sheriffs officials that the 8-year-old, whose name has not been released, set the toddler on fire after the 2-year-old’s sister refused to let her brother play with the older boy.
“It angered him so that he went and got a gray container, filled it full of gasoline, set it on fire and threw it on the little boy,” said Ray Ncubaucr, Hidalgo County Sheriffs spokesman.
The incident was reported at about 6:20 p.m. Monday in Los Ebanos, a Texas border town about 30 miles west of McAllen.
The,three children were playing among other children in the yard of a home. Parents of the children were inside the homes during the incident, Neubauer said.
The toddler suffered bums on his face, hands, arms and stomach.
Criminal charges in the case cannot be filed because all of the children involved are under the age of IO.
On hand for the McQueeny Lions Club donation of $1,000 to the New Braunfels Children’s Shelter are, from left, Les Stewart, a Lions board member; Esther Mendoza, administrator of the shelter; Glenda Chandler, house manager and volunteer coordinator for the shelter; and Harold Saathoff, a Lions board member. (Photo by Erik Karlsson)
Alleged racial slurs focus of school case
Shuttle releases ‘Star Wars’ craft
SPACE CENTER, Houston (AP) — Discovery’s astronauts had trouble aiming a Star Wars research satellite after releasing it in orbit today, and ground controllers postponed the first observation of shuttle exhaust plumes.
The experiment was delayed after wrong manuevering commands twice were sent to the satellite.
Mission Control told the crew to forget the plume experiments until later in the day, while ground controllers rushed to solve the problem.
“If we can get this sorted out, we’ll pick up three bums ... a little bit later on,” Mission Control’s Brian Duffy said.
The first observation of a maneuvering engine bum had been scheduled for this morning, with two more early this evening. The crew also had planned to observe the plume of a smaller steering jet firing this evening.
The astronauts used the shuttle’s robot arm today to lift the 15-foot satellite from Discovery’s cargo bay, then released it.
A few minutes later, commander Michael Coats steered the shuttle away from the satellite to put 6.2 miles between the two craft.
The trouble began a few hours later.
A sensor to protect the satellite’s instruments from the sun was turned on as planned. Suddenly, the spacecraft’s position shanged, apparently because the sensor detected a bright light, said NASA flight director Bob Castle.
Controllers gave the astronauts two sets of computer commands to correct its alignment and both sets contained errors, putting the satellite in the wrong position, Castle said.
Mission Control delayed the first observation by one orbit, or 90 minutes, then by about nine hours after it became apparent the problem would not be resolved quickly.
Bush adresses free trade concerns
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Bush today promised to protect U.S. workers and the environment from negative effects of a free trade agreement with Mexico.
The president told members of Congress in written statement that he will work with diem “to ensure a worker adjustment program that is adequately funded and that provides effective services to workers who may lose their jobs as a result of an agreement with Mexico.”
The program’s pricelag and details would be worked out with Congress when the trade negotiations are finished, officials said. It would provide dislocated workers “with comprehensive services in a timely fashion,” according to a White House summary of Bush’s proposals obtained by The Associated Press.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This story contains some of the racial slurs central to a controversial case involving a California school district They are reprodued here because their use is essential to the understanding of the story.
By STEVE GEISSINGER Associated Press Writer
SACRAMENTO. Calif. (AP) — The state is threatening to cut off funding to a school district it says ignored accusations that a teacher called Indian students “Tontos” and black youngsters “niggers.”
One lawmaker said the 5-year-old case shows that children need protection from those they are taught to trust and respect — their teachers.
The Education Department is holding hearings to determine whether the Susanville Elementary district ignored complaints about teacher Edward Frank Murin in violation of a law against racial discrimination in state-financed programs.
At stake is the $3 million in state money in the district’s $5 million budget. Without it, the 1,350-studcnt system would collapse, officials say.
For years, parents and students have complained that Murin taunted black and Indian students with slurs, that he kicked chairs out from under children and isolated one student in the back of a classroom for an entire term.
State Assemblyman Rusty Arcias said the case reveals “the absence of any complaint procedure for parents who believe their child is being abused by a teacher.”
Although the racial allcgauons may be resolved during the hearings, Areias said the claims of physical abuse had not been properly investigated. He called the situation “the biggest case of bureaucratic buckpassing I’ve ever seen.”
The Education Department says it has no jurisdiction over such matters and the Department of Social Services says it handles only domestic child abuse. The Commission on Teacher Credentialing cleared Murin of wrongdoing in 1988.
Areias has introduced a bill that would establish clear rules for handling complaints about teachers.
During two weeks of testimony before an administrative law judge, students said that Murin, 45, called
Supplies taken to storm victims
MANPURA, Bangladesh (AP) — Authorities airlifted food and medicine today to survivors of a devastating cyclone on Bangladesh’s southeastern coast. The official death toll was nearly 3,000, but one report said 25,000 people died.
Tens of thousands of people were reported missing.
The United News of Bangladesh news agency, quoting radio messages received in Dhaka, said 25,000 people died in the cyclone, the most powerful to ever strike this impoverished nation.
Relief Secretary Hishamuddin Ahmed said the number of confirmed killed so far in Tuesday’s storm — the most powerful on record to hit.
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Indian students “Tontos” and “wagon burners” and called blacks “niggers,” “jungle bunnies” and “Tootsie Rolls.” Parents and students testified he harassed them after they complained.
Murin has not testified. His attorney, Marcus Vandcrlaan, said he had advised Murin not to discuss the case. Vandcrlaan refused comment as well.
“There’s no way he can keep up with the stream of defamatory comments that has been put out against him,” Vanderlaan said.
The hearings, which recessed Friday, resume Sept. 23.
Janice Pratt, a parent who has been trying to oust Murin for five years, said the slow progress “is indicative of the ‘good of boy’ syndrome that’s around here.”
“There’s a core of old-time Susanville people who feel racial slurs and abusing children is an acceptable way of leaching and treating other human beings,” she said.
Murin, a native of Susanville, has taught at Diamond View Elementary School since 1973.
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