New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - October 2, 1997, New Braunfels, Texas
THURSDAYUnicorns hope Rockets continue downward orbit. Page 1B
20332 MOO? 1.0/22/9? 80
• S 0 ~ U E S T Pl IC R G F* U B LIS i 11W G 2627 E YANDELL.. DR
EL PASO, TX 79903-
16 pages in two sections ■ Thursday, October 2,1997
Serving Comal County and surrounding areas for more than 145 years ■ Home of Vlota'Jonas
Vol. 145, No. 231
Birthday wishas from tha Herakf-Zeitung!
The Mew Braunfels Herald-Zeitung extends biithday wishes to: Viola Jonas, Ruby Castflleja, Dianna Conley, Manuel Hernandez, Sue Phillips, Tony Ramos, Travis Weishaar (4 years) and Deiida Montanez.
Happy Anniversary wishes go to Buddy and Leon Swenson (47 years).
To have a birthday or anniversary listed here, call 625-9144.
Mold —2,210 Pigweed —12
Ragweed — 326 Cocklebur — 38
Cedar Elm —76
(Paten measured in parts per al* meter of a.rtomnteion prowled by Dr Frank Hampel) River Information
Comal River — 294 cubic feet per second, down 5 from Wednesday.
Edwards Aquifer Panther Canyon Well 625.32 feet above sea level, down 02 from Wednesday
Canyon Dam discharge — 176 cfs Canyon Lake inflow — not available
Lake level — 906 60 feet above
WW------* - I
NBW Braunfels uiiimBS
NBU reports pumping 7 365 million gallons of surface water Wednesday, and 853.000 gallons was used.
Warm, fall weather •xpaetad to last
Tonight — Fair evening skies becoming partly cloudy after midnight, low in the upper 60s. Light southeast wind
Friday — Partly cloudy and hot. High in the lower 90s. Southeast wind near 10 mph.
Saturday — Partly cloudy. Highs in the 80s to near 90.
Sunday and Monday —
Fair. Evening skies, otherwise partly cloudy with a slight chance of showers Lows in the 60s. Highs near 90
Today Is Ozona action day
i The Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission has notified the San Antonio metropolitan area, which includes Comal County, that today is an ozone action day. People should do what they can to make the air cleaner, including avoiding excessive driving and reducing driving by carpooling.
Don’t format that araa coda changa
After Monday, the transition period for the area code change in this area will end. Calls made with the 210 area code will no longer be connected in New Braunfels.
The Dittiinger Memorial Library annual book sale will from 9 a m. to 7 p.m. today and 9 a m. to 5 p.m. Friday at the Civic Center. No admission will be charged.
Watch for road work
■ New Braunfels Utilities crews will be working on Schmidt Avenue between Becker and the Interstate 35 access road this week.
■ New Braunfels street crews are working on Oasis Street from Business 35 to Ridgewood Avenue.
B Construction is scheduled to seal coat Old McQueeney Road, Morningside Drive, Mesquite Avenue and Old Marion Road through Oct. 10.
City enjoys marriage of increased spending, healthy growth
By SUSAN JAKOBSEN
Business in New Braunfels is booming, according to economic, indicators, city and state officials and local proprietors.
Just ask Connie Worley, owner and manager of Celebrations, a shop specializing in bridal and formal wear, how ‘97 compares to *96.
“We’re up about 5-6 percent gross,” said Worley, making rough Estimates on the economic progress this past year of the specialty business serving New Braunfels and surrounding areas for about a decade.
Worley acknowledges that proximity to other populous areas has helped her business grow, but she adds that staying competitive as a small business is “a hill-time job.”
Revenue for New Braunfels has increased thanks to a half-cent economic development sales tax created in 1995. City sales and use tax comparison surveys reveal New Braunfels’ 1997 sales tax payments to date total $4,638,805.61, compared with a’96 to-date total of $4^24,824.81. This is a 2.51 percent increase in sales tax revenue, according to documents released in September by State Comptroller John Sharp.
Similar documents indicate that ‘97 year-to-date sales and use tax revenues for Comal County were only $1,795,321.65, a decrease from ‘96 year-to-date totals of $1,803,090.76. This is a 0.43 percent drop in sales tax revenue for Comal County.
The current sales tax rate in New Braunfels is 8.25 percent, of which 6.25 percent goes to the state, 1.5 percent to the city of New Braunfels and 0.5 percent to Comal County, said Michael Meek, Greater New Braunfels Chamber of Commerce president.
The new half-cent sales tax is dedicated to economic development projects, said Meek, noting the construction of a new library and police administration building are in the works and have been made possible through sales tax revenues.
“We (New Braunfels and the immediate area) had a good July,” Meek said, estimating that 60-70
Connie Worley, owner and manager of Celebration* Formal Wear, straighten? her
gown dlepley Wednesday afternoon. A healthy economy keeps business lively for small business owners like Worley.
Herald-Zertung photo by Michael Darnall
percent of the total sales tax revenue that the city generates is paid by visitors to New Braunfels and Comal County.
Heavy rains this past June and exceedingly dry weather in ‘96 threatened to impact a county so dependent on tourists and income from its rivers and water recreation activities.
A piece of a larger puzzle. New Braunfels fits into the overall Texas economy, which is thriving too, according to state comptroller officials who delivered September sales tax rebates totaling $172.7 million recently to 1,085 Texas cities and 117 counties. That reflects a 6.1 percent increase over
Turn to Economy* pa9© 2A
Economic report card
•Sales tax (through August *97) •Sales tex (through August *96)
•Building permits issued *97 •Building permits issued *96)
•Building permit Iota) (to August *97) •Building permit total (to August *96)
•Sales tax (through August *97)
•Sales tax (through August 96)
•Building permits issued 97 (county) •Building permits issued 96 (county)
•Building permit total (to August 97) •Building permit total (to August 96)
$49,648,028 ‘down 14.2% $57,870,754
Dad takes up signs after rape suspect gets arrested
By DAVID DEKUNDER
Herakj-Zeitung photo bv Michael Damail
The sign was displayed in front of a home in the Lake Dunlap area.
A Lake Dunlap man took matters into his own hands when he thought Guadalupe County law enforcement had not done enough to protect his 6-year-old daughter.
When the father found out that a 16-year-old suspected of molesting his daughter had moved with his mother into the north Guadalupe County neighborhood, he posted two signs in his front yard stating that a “confessed" child sex offender was in the neighborhood. The signs warned neighbors to protect their children.
The father said the signs had been up since last week.
He said he posted theifr because
Guadalupe County authorities were not adequately protecting his 6-year-old daughter.
In a confession made to Texas Rangers in October 1996, the teen-ager is on record saying he attempted to have sex or had sex with the girl on more than one occasion.
The father said when he learned the boy was living close to his home, he called the Guadalupe County Attorney’s Office, the sheriffs department and the juvenile probation department. He wanted to know why the teen was back in the neighborhood after he had understood the boy was ordered not to be there.
County Attorney Bob Covington said the teen-ager had been in juvenile detention for months before he had been released A condition of his release was that he was not supposed to live within 500 yards of the girl’s residence, Covington said
“As a condition of his release he was not to be on the streets,’’ the father said. 'it's been a case of whose is going to protect our kids.”
On Tuesday, the Guadalupe County Attorney’s Office had the boy picked up and detained when they learned he was living near the girl’s home.
Covington said when juvenile court first released the teen-age suspect, he and his mother were living in the New Braunfels area. They later moved back into the Guadalupe County neighborhood.
“Monday morning we found out he was bv mg (within) 500 yards (of the girl), which was a violation of the release," Cov ington said.
“We had a detention hearing today (Wednesday) and he will remain in detention for IO days until he has
Turn to Fatter, Page 2A
Republic of Texas member denied request for new judge
By OAVK> OEKUNOCVt
Republic of Texas member Carolyn Carney will be tried in Judge Charles Ramsay’s courtroom, despite her request for Ramsay to step aside from her case, a district judge ruled this week.
District court administrator Martin Allen said Judge B.B. Schraub denied to hear Carney’s motion.
Carney is charged with aggravat
ed assault against a public servant after allegedly pointing a handgun at one of the lawmen executing a warrant in June at her Bulverde home.
She was wanted for failure to appear in court. Carney, secretary of council for the Republic of Texas, is one of 25 defendants in a civil lawsuit filed by the attorney general's office. The suit alleges that the Republic of Texas group filed illegal liens against the state of Texas.
Grenade attack nets 15-year sentence
By DAVID DEKUNDER
A Canyon Lake man was sentenced by a jury Wednesday to 15 years in prison after being found guilty of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
Sheldon Wayne Oku, 50, was found guilty tor injuring his wife, Carol, in an incident that occurred at their Canyon Lake home on Dec 8. Oku detonated a hand grenade in front of their home off of Simon Crest during a family disturbance, sheriffs deputies said.
Oku, Carol Oku and his stepdaughter. Megan Ruh, 14, suffered injuries. Sheldon Oku’s hand was seriously injured during the blast.
Oku had fled the scene on foot after he detonated the grenade. Law enforcement officers found him about two-
Sheldon Wayne Oku, SO, was found guilty for injuring his wife, Corol... on Doe. 8. Oku detonated a hand grenade in front of their homo...
and-a-half hours later near Simon Ridge Drive.
Criminal District Attorney Dib Waldnp said Oku was convicted of charges for serious injuries against his stepdaughter. Waldnp said he was pursuing another charge against Oku tor injunes to his wife, a second degree felony.
Waldnp said if Oku w as conv icted on the other charges he could face another two to 20 years in pnson and a possible $10,000 fine.
New Braunfels High, local police brace for big game
By DAVID DEKIINOER
With a crowd of8,000 people expected for the New Braunfcls-Judson game at Unicom Stadium Fnday, New Braunfels High School officials arc bracing for the expected influx of fans and traffic.
The District 26-5A game, which features the undefeated Unicorns, 4-0, and the powerhouse Judson Rockets (2-2), will kick off at 7:30 p.m.
New Braunfels Independent School District
spokeswoman Leslie Knewaldt said the distnct would hire extra police officers to help with crowd control and traffic.
Head football cooch and athletic director I im Kingsbury said four to six sets of bleachers would be added in the end zone next to the scoreboard. He said those bleachers would seat 300 people.
Kriewaldt said students should sit in the bleachers if they could.
“Students and middle school students are encouraged to use the bleachers to free up the stands for parents,” Knewaldt said. “They are
going to put up a fence to separate the student (New Braunfels and Judson) sides.”
As for parking, fans should arrive as quickly as they can before they game starts, Kriewaldt said.
Knewaldt said parking was available in the front and back of NBHS, and that people would start parking across the high school in the grassy areas on Loop 337.
Kriewaldt said fans should not park in fire lanes.
“They need to be careful not to park there, or they will get towed,” she said.
People should be advised to buy game tickets
as early as possible, Knewaldt said.
Tickets for the game went on sale Wednesday at the high school’s main office.
Ticket seller Jometa Dees said people were waiting in droves to buy game tickets.
“Before 8 a m. this morning we had a line,” Dees said. “I have very few reserves (tickets) left. It has been a very busy day.”
Dees said tickets would continue to be on sale today from 8 a rn. to 3 p.m and on Friday from 8 a m. to I p.m. in the athletic director’s office in the main hall of the high school building.
More fair winners on Page 10A