New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 1, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas
THE SUN DAY MAY 1,2005rf:2LLmFlL M
El PASO TX 79903Herald-Zeitung
Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852.
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Vol. 154, No. 141 32 pages, 5 sections
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DEAR ABBY 3E CLASSIFIEDS ID COMICS 4C CROSSWORD 4C FORUM 4A OBITUARIES 3A SPORTS 1B TV GRIDS 2,3ECouncil rushing to pass drainage impact fee
By Scott Mahon
After more than a year of committee work, debate, consultants and feasibility studies, the New Braunfels City Council will try to “fast track” the city’s drainage ordinance regarding storm water development fees, or drainage impact fees.
Council is scheduled to meet
Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday to approve the ordinance, which, like all ordinances, requires three readings.
The ordinance actually modifies a 2000 ordinance that defined utility fees that would be paid by all New Braunfels residents on a monthly basis to pay for the cost of maintaining new and existing drainage projects.
Although a drainage utitlity fee
■ For Wayne Rudolph's view on the drainage utility fee, see Forum on page 4A
has never been implemented, council has debated how much the fee should be and has discussed a range of $5 to $7 per month.
Mayor Adam Cork said Friday
that next week’s meetings would focus solely on storm water development fees, or impact fees, and that council would consider an amount for utility fees at a later date.
“The 2000 ordinance addressed utility fees, but the ordinance we will be considering Monday deals with storm water development fees only,” he said. “I ve resisted setting an amount
for the utility fee until we’ve decided on impact fees. But since we could potentially have three new council members after the May 7 election, I’d hate to see them deal with an issue as complicated as this and delay it any longer.’’
Monday’s public hearing regarding impact fees will
See FEE Page 9A
AT A GLANCE
■ What: New Braunfels City Council special meeting to consider drainage impact fee
■ When: 6 p.m. Monday
■ Where: Municipal Building, 424 S. Casteel Ave.Cork, Boyer offer NB voters distinct choice for mayor »>KST'
Firefighters urge caution as danger grows
By Bon Maloney
By Scott Mahon
The most obvious difference between New Braunfels’ mayoral candidates could be how the two men approach and analyze issues.
Mayor Adam Cork, who is running for a second term, had an early interest in science and admitted he’s a detail-oriented person who relies heavily on research to make decisions.
Cork earned a degree in biology, with an emphasis on electro-physiology.
“I worked the last two years in a research lab where my love for detail-oriented data collection and
Antonio, where he owned his own software company.
“We looked for a community where we could become involved and actually see the impact of our involvement,” said Cork, who with his wife owns Color Fxpress.
Both candidates said their decision-making was also based on what they perceived to be the interests of the community-at-large.
“I don’t rely on close-knit friends or the same six to IO people who always show up at council meetings,” Cork said. “I like to visit with
County Commissioner Greg I’arker wants to give West End residents a chance to see what a local bus service could be like — and is looking for a sponsor to help.
Parker, whose Precinct 3 includes the West End, has proposed establishing regular public transportation between that neighborhood and services its residents could use, such as supermarkets, county and city offices and health care providers.
I Ie approached his fellow commissioners Thursday with a proposal for a bus service trial run. Parker wanted to divert some money from his personal travel allocation to providing bus service from IO a.m. to 2 p.m. May 7 for “Fitness Festival," which is
See MAYOR Page 5A
See BUS Page 9A
BANE OF THE COUNTY
Police say virtually all crime linked
to illegal drugs
By Ron Maloney
a drug addict
— lives across die street or in the next stairwell.
Maybe he even sells drugs to pay for the drugs he uses to get through the day.
Not your business?
Don’t bet on it.
Remember that time last year when someone broke into your car and ripped off the stereo? I low about six months ago when they took your neighbor's TV?
According to statistics published by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, on average, a drug addict commits 200 crimes a year to pay the costs of an illegal habit.
And New Braunfels police Et. Mike Rust believes that could be a conservative number.
“I think probably 75 percent of the work of our investigators do comes back to drugs because drugs cost a lot of money,” Rust said.
There is no way, police say, to gauge the “street value” or worth of the drug trade in New Braunfels
— or to calculate what heads
BANE OF j THE COUNTY i BThis is the sec-j ond of a four-part j series looking at | the impact of I drug use on New j Braunfels and j Comal County.
Evidence Officer Melissa Wein sorts through and labels evidence seized after New Braunfels police officers made a drug arrest recently. Nearly a quarter of the evidence room at the police station is filled with drugs or paraphernalia seized after arrests.
through town on Interstate 35 bound for cities up north.
The evidence vault at the New Braunfels Police Department, though, is an 80-by-20-foot room. Nearly a quarter of it is stacked — floor to ceiling — with drugs and paraphernalia such as smoking pipes or other materials either waiting to be introduced as evidence at trial or awaiting destruction following a conviction.
Evidence Officer Melissa Wein said the police department destroys drug evidence every month and still sees the “product” piling up as drug cases climb.
“It depends on the cases and destruction orders, things like that," Wein said.
Rust, with more than two decades at the NBPD, said the cases seem to be increasing. Police just accept the drug trade and its
increase as part of the job, he said. He wasn’t sure if use was increasing in general — but the increase could definitely be marked, he said, to the increased local population, if nothing else.
“lf you take a certain percentage— any percentage—of 40,(XX) people, it’s IO times the same percentage of 4,000 people,” Rust said.
See DRUGS Page 10A
analysis thrived,” he said. “My goal was to be a research scientist.”
Boyer, on the other hand, earned a law degree, and said he likes to distill an issue to get to the core of the problem.
“Because of my legal background, I’m an analytical thinker,”
Boyer said. “My mother, who was a big influence in my life, always told me I liked to argue, so I guess I thought I had the attributes for law school. But she also instilled in
A CLOSER LOOK
■ Compare District 5 council candidates Travis Wommack and Kathleen Krueger Tuesday.
me the concept of giving back to the community.”
Boyer has lived in New Braunfels 28 years. His wife’s father was mayor of New Braunfels in the early 1970s.
Although he has owned his own business, he has also worked for the district attorney’s office and served as the city’s municipal prosecutor.
Cork and his wife moved to New Braunfels IO years ago from San
CANYON I AKE — Fire officials responding to increased numbers of wildfires in recent days urged caution with outdoor burns and offered suggestions to reduce fire danger.
Keith Lewis, president of Comal County Emergency Service District 3, said the county’s firefighters have spent long, hot hours over the past week dealing with grassfires and wildfires — and that the workload affects the ability of firefighters to answer other emergency calls.
ESD 3 contracts for fire protection in the Canyon Lake area with Canyon Lake Fire/EMS.
"Over the last five days, we’ve had a rash of wildland fires,” Lewis said.
One, a mutual aid call Saturday afternoon for Spring Branch, required firefighters from every department in the county— keeping firefighters out on scene from midafternoon until 9 p.m.
But that was only one of three fires the ESD dealt with Saturday — followed by three more Sunday.
See FIRE Page 10A
New Braunfels students show off a year’s worth of work at technology showcase.
Parker asks for help with county bus service