New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 13, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas
TUESDAY May 13,2003
12 pages in 2 sections
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Vol. 152, No. 154■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■■IServing New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852
50 centsCity scrambles to renew contract with Wal-Mart facility
By Dylan Jimenez
Amid rumors that Wal-Mart officials might move their distribution center out of Comal County, New Braunfels officials have crafted an agreement that guarantees the facility would not be annexed into the city.
Faced with the possibility
of losing 1,200 jobs, city leaders opted to take a pro-active approach to keep the company here.
According to the proposed contract extension, Wal-Mart would pay the city $375,000 per year through 2010.
In exchange, council has guaranteed that the distribution center and the 125-acre
tract of land it sits on would remain an island of county land inside the city, but not a part of the city.
Mayor Adam Cork said the contract doesn’t guarantee the distribution center will stay in town.
Officials have been trying for months to send Wal-Mart the message that the city
would work with the retail chain. They have encouraged Wal-Mart officials to expand their facilities to include food distribution.
“We’re trying to send them the signal that we want to be very aggressive in New Braunfels on retaining these businesses,” Cork said.
But City Manager Chuck
Pinto said Wal-Mart corporate officials seemed “not all that interested” in recent incentive offers made to help the company expand and locate a ftxxi distribution center in town.
Current problems with the existing facility could be the stumbling block, he said.
The facility is one of Wal-
Mart’s most highly taxed distribution centers, said Michael Meek, president of the Greater New Braunfels Chamber of Commerce.
“I know there are many concerns with the legation,” Cork said.
Pinto dismissed rumors
Council delays action on HOT funding requests
By Dylan Jimenez
New Braunfels City Council funded zero dollars out of millions of dollars in requests for funds Monday.
Up for grabs was more than $280,OOO in unallocated Hotel Occupancy Tax funds. To get the cash, six different civic groups pitched to council seven projects they argued would bring in tourism dollars.
The projects included about $1 million for the establishment of an Art in Public Places program, $45,(XX) in advertising and promotion for Wurst-
fest, an unspecified amount for a roller rink,1 $8,000 for a barber shop quartet show, $12,500 for renovation of the Main Plaza Bandstand and $25,000 to advertise a new heritage festival.
Three motions from District 3 Councilwoman Gale Pospisil and District 6 Councilman Kenneth Valentine to allocate some of the funds to a few of the programs died with insufficient support.
Council decided to wait to fund civic projects from unallocated funds until the exist of the civic center expansion is determined.
Flume gives deposition for lawsuit in final day in office
By Dylan Jimenez
Ex-New Braunfels Councilwoman Debbie Flume spent her final day in office giving a deposition to the city attorney for a civil lawsuit against the city.
Resident Joby Hardwick sued the city in August 2002 for denying a building permit for his property on the Guadalupe River.
Hardwick sought but did not receive a building permit to construct a house at 208 Rio Dr.
The permit application was signed by Debbie Flume on behalf of the construction business she co-owns with her husband, Michael Flume.
In the original writ, Hardwick claimed his application — submittc*d in December 2001 — “was complete in all respects and complied with the applicable ordinances, rules and/or regulations of
the City of New Braunfels.” It was “improperly denied.” he claimed.
The property is in a floodway or floodplain.
When the Flumes challenged the denial with new Planning director Frank Robbins, he told Michael Flume that the permit was denied because the application process was incomplete.
According to an affidavit from Debbie Flume, the city allegedly granted building permits for construction at two neighboring sites in September 2001 and October 2001 "with the same form of documents.”
In addition, Debbie Flume said an engineer’s certification was required of Hardwick’s projx*rty but not of the others.
(Tty Attorney Chark** Zech, who took Debbie Flume’s deposition, refused to comment on the case.
8 1 56825
New city officials Pospisil, Hull wade into issues
By Dylan Jimenez
Two newly elected New Braunfels City Councilwomen took their oaths of office Monday.
Over the last few months as candidates, brith sat in city halls council chambers twice a month trying to stay abreast of issues and procedures.
District 4 Councilwoman Valerie Hull said she learned a lot from those meetings.
“I got information that I would not have received, if I would not have gone,” she said Monday.
It made her more aware of what was going on and how people reacted, she said.
The pair of new city officials got their first chance Monday to put their studies into action.
After former councilpersons
Robert Kendrick (D-4) and Debbie Flume (D-3), were recognized and honored by the council, Mayor Adam Cork swore in the new councilwomen.
And while their official duties as councilwomen began with that oath, their responsibilities started days before the meeting.
Hull had been studying Monday’s agenda for four days and Pospisil spent most of Sunday and Monday going over it.
Constituents were already calling Pospisil Monday morning giving their opinions and suggesting the way she should vote at the meeting later that night. She said she welcomes perspectives so she can make a decision based on all sides of issues.
“It’s a little hard to carry on a
See NEWLY ELECTED/3A
New District 4 City Councilwoman Valerie Hull listens as Mayor Pro-tem Lee Rodriguez talks about the hotel occupancy tax at Monday night’s council meeting. Hull and Gale Pospisil, District 3, were sworn in to office by Mayor Adam Cork at the beginning of the meeting.
At the head of the class
NBISD names teachers of year for elementary, secondary levels
By Sean Bowlin
We always remember the good ones.
Everyone has a favorite teacher -that one individual who in some special way touched their life, who made learning a special treat.
And the students of Memorial Primary music teacher Marcia Kelly and OakRun band teacher Anna Zientek had the chance this year to learn from the best.
Kelly and Zientek are this year’s Elementary and Secondary Teachers of the Year in the New Braunfels Independent School District.
Kelly, who has been teaching for 19 years, 15 of those years with NBISD, was overwhelmed and very excited by her selection.
In the past, she has always looked up to educators who won the coveted ‘Teachers of The Year” award.
“I’m proud to be a part of that group,” she said.
Kelly said her years of experience have helped her hone her skills. She was in the classroom for a long time before teaching music. Now, she teaches every student instead of just 22 people.
“I touch more children,* Kelly said.
And that’s good because it gives her more opportunity to meet her personal goal.
‘The most important thing is to make every child a success," she said.
Kelly said she always loved school while growing up and wanted to bt* a teacher.
She believes a teacher’s greatest challenge is finding that one thing that makes a child want to come to school every day.
Kelly said her job is three-pronged:
I) Ensuring students are on the path to reach the next grade;
OakRun sixth grade band teacher Anna Zientek helps Rebecca Racanelli (left) and Rebecca Salsman with their music in the schools band hall. Zientek was choosen as NBISD’s secondary Teacher of the Year. Music teacher Marsha Kelly (below) discusses with Memorial Primary kindergartener Roberto Rojas how to dress for his roll as a farmer in the school’s production of “How Does Your Garden Grow?" Kelly was selected NBISD’s elementary teacher of the year.