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  • Location: New Braunfels, Texas
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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - October 7, 2005, New Braunfels, Texas XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX NIXED ADC 781 MOI 1000571 12/30/05 SOUTHWEST HICROF'LIBLISMCRS 2627 E VANDELL DR EL PASO TX 79903 cDin^Y, OCTOBER 7,2005raiJ)-Zeitung SPORTS GAME TIME New Braunfels, Canyon football teams open district play; Smithson Valley hosts SA MacArthur. Page 5A INSIDE TIME'S UP Today is the deadline for candidates and voters to register for city council election. Page 2A Serving New Braunfels and Comal County since 1852. Vol. 154, No. 274 14 pages, 2 sections www: i BT Mostly I ^ Cloudy High Low I 66 56 • Details .... 1B Heating costs will hit pocketbooks hard DEAR ABBY 3B CLASSIFIEDS SB COMICS 2B CROSSWORD 2B FORUM 4A OBITUARIES 3A SPORTS 5A TV GRIDS 3B By Ron Maloney Staff Writer Get ready for some sticker shock this winter. Utility bills are on their way. Gasoline prices aren’t the only fuel costs skyrocketing. Doubling in price in the past year has been natural gas, which heats homes directly and is used by power plants to generate electricity. Local utility spokespeople say they haven’t heard from their suppliers how much their costs will increase, but those increases will be passed on to consumers, and the consensus is that prices will be going up — maybe way up. The Associated Press reported Thursday that North Central Texas residential customers could see a 60 percent to 90 percent increase in their gas bills compared to last winter. The increase is a result of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, which disrupted about 15 percent of the country’s natural gas production. Natur al gas supplies were already tight because of growing demand from power plants and other users, said Dick Erskine, president of Atmos Energy’s Mid-Tex Division. See UTILITY, Page 3AThe Uptown Piano Bar is the Romantic place for Birthday Parties and Anniversaries Downstairs in the Prince Solms Inn 295 E. San Antonio 830 620 7600 Guadalupe commissioner announces plans to run again Historic bells will ring again this weekend County looking at ways to finance road upgrades By Ron Maloney Staff Writer County staff and officials with the Texas Department of Transportation are meeting to work out plans for upgrading two major traffic arteries. The plans under discussion will include for the first time “local participation’’ in the financing of the projects, which will be designed to increase capacity on Texas 46 and U.S. 281. The Texas Transportation Commission, the state board that oversees TxDOT, has given Comal County and the commission’s San Antonio staff the approval to develop proposals for the county’s two top-priority road projects. State government, facing serious budget shortfalls, has looked to local government to help finance highway projects that historically and traditionally were the province of state and federal governments. T\vo financing scenarios that came out of the 77th Texas Legislature were “pass-through financing’’ in which local governments bankroll projects through bonds that are to be later repaid — except for interest — by See ROADS, Page 2A GOAL DULY NOTED NB marching band tunes up with eyes on state meet By Jessica Sanders Staff Writer Their steps are in line, their music in tune, but something still is missing for the New Braunfels High School marching band. “The more we make it to the state level, the more we want to go again,’’ said Ryan Simpson, a senior saxophone player. Ryan said he participated in a state University Interscholastic League competition his sophomore year and hopes to compete one last time. Though the band faces a schedule of “warm-up contests,” including Saturday’s Rocket Review in Converse, its members’ minds are focused on the highest competition. Band director Beth Bronk agreed that UIL success is the band’s real goal. She said the band must rank well in both the regional and area competitions before it can compete at the state competition in San Antonio. “We don’t go to warm-up contests for trophies; we go for comments from the judges,” she said. The New Braunfels High School marching band won first place in the Class 4A classification and three first division ratings at the Oct. I Rough Rider Marching Contest in San Antonio. New Braunfels also was judged against all 5A and 4A groups for caption awards and won Outstanding Horn Line and Outstanding Color Guard. Bronk said she knew every note would be on key, but keeping almost 300 students organized is a little trickier. “We know what to do when we hear the downbeat,” she said. “It’s just that getting from the buses to the field with a group that big is really hard.” Despite one of the warmest marching seasons in years, Bronk By Ron Maloney StaffWriter SEGUIN — Guadalupe County Precinct 4 Commissioner judy Cope announced Thursday she would seek a second term on Commissioners Court. Cope’s district includes the part of New Braunfels located in Guadalupe County and extends through the portion of the county between Schertz and Seguin. The filing period for the 2006 election cycle is Dec. 3,2005, to Jan. 2, 2006. The primary election will be conducted March 7,2006. The gen eral election will be Nov. 7,2006. “I’m really proud of the accomplishments we’ve made up to this point, but we have a lot of projects ongoing and I d like to see them through,” Cope said. The first-term commissioner said she felt like she’d conducted county business in a way that showed her constituents she could be trusted — and counted upon to get things done. Commissioner Judy Cope “I’ve kept my word to the voters,” Cope said. “I told them I’d keep taxes as low as possible, and I’ve voted no’ on each tax increase. I told them I would not accept a raise while in office, and I have not taken a raise.” Cope said she’s worked to develop a good working relationship with other officials in Guadalupe County, but added shes also worked hard to work with officials in other counties on issues such as flood control and annexation. She serves on tile (/inference of Urban Counties legislative committee and will be working next session with District 73 State Rep. Carter Casteel to get legislation that will protect Guadalupe County fanners from annexation by New Braunfels. “Guadalupe (/unity Precinct 4 is probably the most diverse precinct in the county,” Cope said. “It includes parts of five cities and eight extra-territorial jurisdictions along with most of the river area and many agricultural and urban areas.” By Jessica Sanders StaffWriter The first bells that j AT A GLANCE called New Braunfels j ■ What: Presenta-settlers to school and j tion of the bells worship will ring! ■ When: 11:30a.m. again Sunday at First I Sunday Protestant Church. j w Where: First Prot- “They have a sweet j w'^o^S^Vew tone, said church his- ; Braunfels torian Gene Momhin- j ■ of note:The bells, weg. “We have it set j which were given up so we can just I to settlers in 1845 push a button in    the    I    by Prinpe Carl of l i    j    -ii    ;    Solms, have been church and they will ; given a new beM ring.”    I    tower. The bells The bells, in their j were put into a new bell tower, will be    i    ™uselim J". tt\e «.    ,    ,i    stone church build- presented to the pub- | ing after the origi. lie at 11:30 a.m. Sun- j nal log church was day at the church, I dismantled in 1881. which is located at 172 W. Coll St. The two bells were given to settlers in 1845 by Prince Carl of Solms, who purchased the land that is present-day New See BELLS, Page 3A Music and a drink Gruene hosts Music and Wine Fest, which mixes love of Texas music with a taste of wine. Photos by MANDY REARY/Herald-Zeitung Allison Hammond, one of the drum majors for the New Braunfels Unicorn band, leads the woodwind section in a warm up before a Wednesday afternoon rehearsal. Below, Catie Hoffman works on her posture. said every band member has been extremely dedicated to his or her goal — getting to the state UIL competition. “They don’t complain; they just run to their spots and try hard,” she said. Ed Gonzales, color guard director and assistant band director, said the color guard is held to equally high standards. “A lot of times I forget that they’re kids right out of middle school," he said. "My expectations are always high, and they always seem to meet them.” One of the elements that sets their program apart is a rifle solo by Diedre Littleton, a senior color guard member. She said a summer training program helped prepare her to show off some difficult moves. See BAND, Page 2A ;