New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - November 16, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas
Page 6A — Herald-Zeitung — Wednesday, November 16; 2005
Senate Republicans reject Democratic call for Iraq timetable
Tracking the news
Police following tips after call-in night
LAST WE KNEW: New Braunfels/Comal County Crime Stoppers and the undercover officers of the Comal County Metropolitan Narcotics Task Force conducted a "turn in drug dealers" call-in in honor of Red Ribbon Week.
LATEST: Officers received a number of calls and are investigating leads.
NEXT: Watch the Herald-Zeitung for reports of any arrests related to the call-in.
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270 walkers take part in wa I kfest
LAST WE KNEW: The New-Braunfit Walkfest and Health Fair was Oct. 15. Participants took a stroll around the city as part of NewBraunfit's effort to encourage active lifestyles.
LATEST: The event brought out 270 walkers.
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Rollback group collects signatures
LAST WE KNEW: A group of taxpayers led by Doug Kirk was working to get 4,533 signatures to force an election to roll back Comal County's new tax rate.
LATEST: Petition workers got 700 signatures on Election Day, bringing their total to just above the halfway point.
NEXT: The deadline for getting signatures is Dec. 14.
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NBISD releases drug test results
LAST WE KNEW: New Braunfels ISD officials said less than 1 percent of students tested positive during random drug tests this year.
LATEST: NBISD has released the exact numbers. Four students tested positive for drug use out of 400 tested.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The GOP-controlled Senate rejected a Democratic call Tuesday for a timetable for withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq but urged President Bush to outline his plan for “the successful completion of the mission” in a bill reflecting a growing bipartisan unease with his Iraq policies.
The overall measure, adopted 98-0, shows a willingness to defy the president in several ways despite a threatened veto. It would restrict the techniques used to interrogate terror detainees, ban their inhuman treatment and call for the administration to provide lawmakers with quarterly reports on the status of operations in Iraq.
The bill was not without victories for the president, including support for the military tribunals Bush wants to use to try detainees at the prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Yet even that was tempered, with language letting
the inmates appeal to a federal court their designation as enemy combatants and their sentences.
The Senate’s votes on Iraq showed a willingness even by Republicans to question the White House on a war that’s growing increasingly unpopular with Americans.
Polls show Bush’s popularity has tumbled in part because of public frustration over Iraq, a war that has claimed the lives of more than 2,000 American troops.
Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said die outcome was “a vote of no confidence on the president’s policies in Iraq.’’ Republicans “acknowledged that there need to be changes made,’’ he said.
But Senate Majority Leader Bill I nst, R-Tenn., trumpeted the chamber’s rejection of the Democratic call for a withdrawal timetable.
“It is an absolute repudiation of the cut-and-run strategy put forward by
the Democrats,’’ Frist said.
The fate of the legislation is uncertain. The House version of the bill, which sets Pentagon policy and authorizes spending, doesn’t include the Iraq language or any of the provisions on the detention, interrogation or prosecution of terrorism suspects.
The measure faces a veto threat from the administration over a provision that imposes a blanket prohibition on the use of “cmd, inhuman and degrading” treatment of terrorism suspects in U.S. custody.
Even so, the Senate’s political statement was clear — and made even more stinging when the vote was held with Bush abroad, an embarrassing step Congress often tries to avoid. With Democrats pressing their amendment calling for a calendar for withdrawal, Republicans worked to fend off a frontal attack by Democrats by calling fin the White I louse to do more.
On a 58-40 vote, Senate Republicans
killed the measure Democratic leaders had offered to force GOP lawmakers to take a stand on the war.
Hie Senate then voted 79-19 in favor of a Republican alternative stating that 2006 “should be a period of significant transition to full Iraqi sovereignty,” with Iraqi forces taking the lead in providing security to create the conditions for the phased redeployment of U.S. forces.
Like the Democratic proposal, the GOP measure is purely advisory, a statement of the Senate’s thinking. It does not require the administration to do anything.
Rather, it simply calls for the Bush administration to “explain to Congress and tin' American people its strategy for the successful completion of the mission in Iraq” and to provide reports on U.S. foreign policy and military operations in Iraq every three months until all U.S. combat brigades have been withdrawn.
CONTINUED FROM Page 1A
Streets, drainage still important
As Boyer went around the table, it emerged that most councilmembers perceived similar issues and had similar goals.
District I Councilmember Sonia Munoz-Gill said she valued the staff input because city staff could tell elected councilmembers what had been done in the past.
In her first goal workshop, Munoz-Gill said, it was useful to hear that the city hadn’t added a firestation in decades.
“You say, why haven’t we added people?” Munoz-Gill asked, recommending that work ' ■ d on locating property tor at least two new firestations.
“I think we still have the drainage issues we’re working on,” Munoz-Gill said. She also asked what the plan would be for additional roadwork to meet transportation issues and said the city should look
“This is no longer a small town. To me, the budget is the business plan — the plan for what die city is going to do for the next year.”
— Marcus Jahns
Interim city manager
GVEC announces rate increase
at parks and a sports complex.
District 2 Councilmember Beth Sokolyk agreed the city needed to procure the sites for firestations, decide how many police officers to hire each year and deal with traffic, drainage and street issues.
“The line tonight on PM 725 was all the way from County Line, waiting to go through the light down to the police station,” she said.
District 3 Councilmemher Gale Pospisil said the city needed to seek additional impact fees for roads and other issues — but also understand developers aren’t going to be able to pay IOO percent of the costs.
“Road impact fees are not the total answer,” she said.
Jahns told council he’d like to see the city centralize its management and address budgeting, purchasing and information technology issues.
r Congressman Henry Cuellar j
I Announces new neighborhood office hours in the community to better serve you I
First Tuesday of each month
Second Tuesday of each month
Eden's County Cafe
424 S. Casten Ave.
10243 E. Hwy. 90
Third Tuesday of each month
380 N Hwy 123 Bypass
200 S. Main
Second Thursday of each
Fourth Tuesday of each month
9180 SM 775
9216 FM 725
10 am-11 am
383 S. Center
1663 Santa Clara Rd.
11am - 12pm
If you need assistance with Social Security, Medicare, Veterans benefits, IRS, Immigration services, Federal grant opportunities, Financial Aid for higher education, or with any other Federal agency, please visit or call one of my offices to set up an appointment.
IHE. San Antonio, Suite 205 San Marcos, Texas 78666 phone: 512-392-2364 fax: 512-392-2834
toll free #: 1-877-780-0028 http://www.house.gov/cuellar/index.shtml email: [email protected]
“This is no longer a small town,” Jahns told the council. “To me, tile budget is the business plan—the plan for what the city is going to do for the next year. I think we need to strengthen the budget process here.”
Jahns said he was “amazed” at tile purchasing procedures in New Braunfels.
“You’ve got everyone doing something different,” lie said. “We need to get someone in this organization to handle purchasing.’’
Technology, Jahns said, offered the opportunity to save the city a lot of money.
“There needs to be some investment in tec hnology, but it needs to be done right. We can do some tilings a lot more efficiently,” Jahns said. “For instance, mobile data terminals in police cars. would enable officers to do their reports in their cars and not iii the office.”
Guadalupe Valley Electric Cooperative has announced an increase in its rates starting Dec. I.
Currently, GVEC residential, general service and small commercial consumers pay 5.6 cents per kilowatt-hour for the generation and transmission portion of their electric bill. On Dec. I, that rate will increase to 6.5 cents per kilo-watt-hour. An average all-electric home on the GVEC electric system will see an increase on their bill of approximately $13 per month, officials said.
Like other utilities nationwide, Guadalupe Valley Electric Cooperative has been
affected by rising fuel prices from its wholesale power suppliers, officials said. The price of natural gas has more than doubled since the beginning of 2005 because of the major hurricanes affecting the gulf coast as well as other market factors.
GVEC officials said its board of directors has elected to implement the overall increase from the cooperative’s wholesale power suppliers in two phases to make it easier on its customers. If natural gas prices remain at their current level, GVEC members will see a similar increase on their bills in March, officials said.
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