New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - October 24, 2003, New Braunfels, Texas
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Is and Comal County since 1852.
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No. 295 2 sections
1 I Details .... 1B
DEAR ABBY 3B CLASSIFIEDS 4-8B COMICS 2B CROSSWORD 2B FORUM 4A
APPLAUSE 4B SPORTS 5-6A TV GRIDS 3B‘Nightmare’ maps could run up poll costs
By Ron Maloney
County officials fear the new congressional district maps that divide New Braunfels between Reps. Ciro Rodriguez and Lamar Smith will increase costs and confuse voters.
The recent redistricting compromise gave Rodriguez, D-San Antonio and his 25th Congressional District a wide swath of New Braunfels.
If approved by the Justice Department, the new districts will take effect Jan. I.
Voters in the upcoming New
Legal action possible; November elections unaffected
Braunfels Independent School District and Emergency Services District 3 elections being conducted in November will not be affected.
County Clerk Joy Streater said she and Election Coordinator Linnell Hinojosa got the new maps Monday.
“We’ve been pulling our hair out,” she told Commissioners’ Court Thursday morning. “What this basically means is that the thousands of dollars and the time we spent chang
ing our districts to increase turnout and convenience has been destroyed in one fell swoop.”
Streater said her office might have to create as many as 15 new precincts to accommodate the district changes — and get them precleared by the justice department before the March 9 primary election.
She said she wasn’t sure whether it could be completed in time. County Judge Danny Scheel said
he’d expressed Streater’s concerns to state Sen. Jeff Wentworth.
“His answer, was basically, 'I know....’” Scheel said. “What if we don't get it approved through the Justice Department in time?"
“We could have to put the primary off,” Streater said. “I don’t know the answer.”
Streater said she discussed the matter with the Texas Legislative Council and was told the county
Official: Tax relief needed for businesses
By Dylan Jimdnez
The Legislature will have to consider Texas businesses if they convene for special session on school finance reform next year, Texas Deputy Chief Controller Billy I iamil ton said Thursday.
Legislators must balance tax relief with Robin Hood reform, he said,
I because busi-
I Most Texas school districts charge the maximum tax rate.
I School property tax is the largest state tax. earning $15 billion per year
I The state funds about 40 percent of school operating costs.
nesses pay more than 50 percent of property taxes.
“The capital investment intensive businesses are paying the lion’s share,” said Michael Meek, president of the Greater New Braunfels Chamber of Commerce.
The 3,000 to 4,000 businesses in the Comal County area pay half of the total property taxes, he said.
Reducing property taxes will increase economic development opportunities in the state, but the state should spread the taxation to different industries to making up the difference, Hamilton said.
When the state tries to come up with more revenue for school funding, legislators will have*to spread the taxation to different sources to take the load off capital intensive businesses, which have barely tolerated funding so much education, Hamilton said.
Hamilton warned many legislators would be looking to weaken the standards of an “adequate” education to be able to spend less on schools.
Museum trying to preserve prehistoric tracks
I Museum s fundraising goal is $1.6 million
I To donate to the expansion project. send checks to the Heritage Museum of the Texas Hill Country, P.O. Box 1598, Canyon Lake, Texas,
I For information, call Xena Jones at (830) 8994972 or Everett Deschner at 8994421.
By Ron Malonoy
They’re making tracks at the Heritage Museum of the Texas I till Country.
Not dinosaur tracks — about 400 of those were made at the site about IOO million years ago — but tracks toward an expansion and preservation project.
The museum association has launched a fund-raising effort to roof and protect tracks sunk in limestone belonging to as many as 30 prehistoric creatures.
The 4.4 acres was donated to the association by businessman John Parker and his wife, Richelle. It is named for Parker’s father, the “Burney Parker I leritage Site.”
Sunday, the museum ramped up an
effort at its first fall “Dinosaur Days" and began a fund-raising program it hopes will raise $34,000 by Dec. I.
The museum has a fund-raising goal of $1.6 million and plans to expand the facility, which also encompasses Native American heritage, Comal County history and the development of Canyon Dam.
About 250 attended the event, which began at noon, to hear presentations that included “Dino” George Biasing of Dinosaur World in San Antonio, Everett Deschner of the Heritage Museum and Judd McNett of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
“Xena Jones, museum association See MUSEUM. Page 3A
Candlelight vigil honors victims of domestic violence
JoAnn Villanueva, manager of the Comal County Women’s Center, Thursday night snuffs out one of 117 candles lighted in memory of the 117 Texas women killed in domestic violence last year.
By Dylan Jimdnez
The 117 Texas women killed by domestic violence last year were honored Thursday night in a candlelight vigil hosted by the Comal County Women’s Center.
During the 2002-03 fiscal year, the center served 799 survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault.
At the vigil, center staff honored peace officers who
were especially sensitive to domestic violence cases.
There were about IOO people on hand, including many domestic violence survivors.
They watched as center staff lighted candies for the women killed in Texas by their husbands, boyfriends or ex-boyfriends.
As they read the victims’ names and the circumstances of their deaths, the candles were put out.
The group also dropped
carnations for the victims of in the Comal River.
State Rep. Carter Casteel, R-New Braunfels, who helped found the center 15 years ago, encouraged survivors to he informed of center services and empower themselves to leave their violent situations.
“It’s important to bring this to the public because we want to pretend it doesn’t happen,” Casteel said. “But it does happen.”
would have to “live with it.”
“If this stands, it’s going to be a nightmare,” Streater told commissioners. “Just so you understand. I don’t plan on going down without yelling a little bit.”
Streater and Scheel will discuss the issues with District Attorney Dib Waldrip and County Counsel Geoff Barr to consider legal options.
The changes as proposed would cost the county $1,000 or more each election for printing additional ballots and would require additional help at the polls, Streater said.
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Its a tale of dinosaur sized ambition.
With a plan for raising $1.6million, the Heritage Museum of the Texas Hill Country has...
A Jurassic goal
Photos by DAVID INGRAM 'Herald-Zeitunr)
George Biasing, president of Dinosaur World, presents a program on dinosaurs Sunday using fossil replicas. Above, left is a drawing of museum plans
Xena Jones, left, watches as museum patrons sift through a “dig box to locate fossils hidden in the sand.
Don’t miss Sunday’s kick-off of a series about college admissions, afterschool planning and the woes high school students experience when figuring out just what they’ll do after graduation.