New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - September 29, 1995, New Braunfels, Texas
FRIDAYLocal football teams head to Austin for road tests this weekend. See Page 5
The Plaza Bandstand
22 Pages in two sections ■ Friday, September 29, 1995
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Serving Comal County and surrounding areas for more than 143 years ■ Home of JUSTIN WRIGHT
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Vol. 143, No. 230
Birthday wishes from the Herald-Zeitung!
The New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung extends birthday wishes to: Justin Wright, Cody Ryan Luehlflng, (one year), Jarek Ray Zepeda (one year), Anne Weis-man, Manuel E. Martinez III, and Blanca 'Minihaha' Farias. Happy anniversary to Lionel and Sarah Lopez (five years),
Joe and Susie Pina (one year), and Izzy and Maria Alvarado.
County Fair schedule
The 102nd Comal County Fair runs through Sunday at the County Fairgrounds on Common Street. Events include:
Friday, Sept. 29:
Pet Parade 9:45 a m. (downtown)
Fair Parade 10 a.m. (downtown)
Local High School Bandsl-3:45 p.m.
Dan McCoy 4-6 p.m.
Jay Erie and Blieder’s Creek 8-midnight Rodeo 8 p.m.
Saturday, Sept. 30:
Chili Cook-off 9 a.rn.-2 p.m. Dan McCoy 1-3 p.m. Wimberley Fire Ants 3-6 p.m.
Kinder Tanzen, Sue Schwab 6-7 p.m.
Quai ter Moon 9 p.m.-1 a.m.
Rodeo 8 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. I:
Children’s best western dress contest 4-6:30 p.m.
Jazz Cowboys 1-3 p.m.
Ed Kadlecek & the Village Band 3-5 p.m.
Carlene Walker 7-11 p.m. Livestock, poultry, baked goods, canning, preserving, clothing, art and crafts, and photography will also be on display and judged during the fair.
There will be a carnival, games, food and drinks available throughout the fair for everyone to drop by and enjoy.
German choral groups to gather here
More than 300 singers from around the state will gather for the 1995 Saengerfest at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 1 at the Saenger-halle.
The Gemischter Chor Har-monie of New Braunfels welcomes German choral groups from around the state to this Sesquicentennial event.
Hermann Sons Lodge to meet
The New Braunfels Hermann Sons Lodge #21 will have its meeting Oct. 1 at 3 p.m. at the lodge hall.
Meat furnished. Members bring a covered dish.
New Orleans Night in Gruene
The Gruene Mansion Restau rant and the American Cancer Society Gala Planning Committee are hosting New Orleans Night in Gruene, Tuesday, Oct 17 from 6:30 p.m. until 10:30 p.m.
The Cajun-style dinner buffet will include shrimp etouffee dirty rice with sausage, black ened chicken, complimentary beer and wine and more. The event will benefit the ACS, and help underwrite the 1996 Starlight Gala. Seating is limited so reserve your tickets by calling 629-6153 or 606-4115.
Herald-Zeitung photos by MICHAEL DARNALL
A truck, driven by Erin Pedraza, crashed into a tree on Hueco Springs Loop Road yesterday at 3:30 p.m. Pedraza and her passenger, Jennifer Foreman were wearing their seat belts. Both were taken to McKenna Memorial Hospital for treatment of minor injuries.
CISD bond issue OK, district says
By DENISE DZIUK
Officials from the Comal Independent School District responded to claims that they were breaking the law with the upcoming bond vote.
At Wednesday’s board meeting, a member of the Association of Citizens for Education said the board may be breaking the law, claiming a tax bond cannot be used to pay for renovations and athletic facilities.
CISD Superintendent Jerry Major said he has spoken with Ed Esquivel, the district’s bond attorney, and Marcia Ozer, in the public finance div ision of the Attorney General’s Office. He said both said the current bond request is legal.
Major said the law says the word “construction.” He
said both the attorney and the Texas Attorney General's office have said that the interpretation of “construction" has included building new facilities and renovating and repairing existing ones.
Esquivel also said that the term “school structures” has been expanded to included appendages, such as gymnasiums, stadium, tracks, and others that go along with the operation of the school. * *• »*■ He said this interpretation has boon challenged twice, once in 1940 and again in 1951, and both times, the ruling said they could be built using tax bonds.
“Basically, the petition has no merit according to both Esquivel and Ozer,” said Major. “The bond was properly called, and it’s our intent to continue with the election on October 14.”
Rodeo Queen crowned
The 1995 Comal County Rodeo Queen and her court were crowned last night at the PROA rodeo at the county fair. Pictured are: Queen Christine Phelan, Princess Whitney Schneider, and Duchess Adrienne Pierce.
An Alarming Trend
City police spend a lot of time and money chasing false alarms
By SUSAN FLYNT ENGLAND
False security alarms are happening at an alarming rate — to the tune of about 84,720 New Braunfels tax dollars this year.
“Over 90 percent of false alarms are end user (owner) mistakes,” said Sean Toney of Alarm Automation, a division of Seiler Fire Equipment Inc.
The New Braunfels Police Department has responded to 1,414 false security alarms from Jan. I to Sept. 26, 1995, said Administrative Sergeant John McEachem. “There have been two actual intrusions,” he said.
Two police officers respond to each alarm, McEachem said. “These are answered in a hurry,” he said — they prepare for the worst-case scenario.
“We did a study on it some years back, and we came up with $60 per call,” he said. Multiplied by the number of false alarms that means about $84,720.
“There are 705 security alarms under permit at this time,” McEachem said. “That’s a tremendously high proportion of police calls per capita in that segment of the city’s population,” he said.
New Braunfels passed an ordinance requiring alarm system owners to get permits from the city. "Along with the permits come some rules,” McEachem said.
Each alarm owner is permitted five false alarms a year. Each alarm beyond that is considered a class C misdemeanor. A class C misdemeanor carries a possible fine of not more than $200 per infraction.
“The people who cause the false alarm problem pay for it,” he said. “It shouldn’t be dealt with through the ordinary taxing system.”
Security industry figures agree that alarm system owners make a lot of mistakes and cause false alarms — but they don’t have to, Toney said.
Customers get thorough training when they buy their alarms, Toney said. “The installers will give you a pretty good grounding if you let them,” McEachem said.
But owners often don’t follow up to make sure they remember what they learned.
There are five common user errors, Toney said:
1) Error entering code,
2) Didn’t enter code quickly enough to disarm system,
3) Armed and moved around inside while interior was still amied,
4) Exited while perimeter was armed,
5) Authorized entry w ithout code (forgot * code).
Security alarms do keep criminals away from homes and businesses, McEachem said.
Tips on Preventing False Alarms
■ Make sure everyone who uses your security system understands how it works. Anyone who has a key to your home should know how to operate your system. Extra training on using your system can be helpful.
■ Have your system tested if you are experiencing false alarms too often. Outdated security equipment can be replaced with improved technology that has builtin Jibe alarm immunities.
■ Notify your dealer immediately if you think your system isn’t working proparty.
■ Test your system regularly and drill on operation procedures. If you are not tme ofthe correct procedures for use and testing of your system, call your dealer for details.
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■ New Braunfels residents need to get a permit from the New Braunfels Police Department.
■ Permits can be picked up at the police station. You can have one mailed on request if you call 608-2179.
■Permits cost $24 per year. A renewal notice will be sent each year.
“If you’re dealing with an alarmed premises that sounds an alarm at that site, you’ll probably chase the guy away,” he said.
Out of two homes, one alarmed and one not. the burglar w ill choose the house without an alarm, Toney said. "They’re not looking to make their break-in hard,” he said.
Window decals and yard signs are a good deterrent, Toney said. “lf they even see the signs, they’ll go for another house.” he said
Security alarm system features have become fairly standardized, Toney said. Most come with "perimeter protection” for doors and windows, inside motion detectors, indoor or attic sirens, and a control panel (where you punch in the codes to ann and disarm).
Also available is monitonng by the security company. Alarms are routed to the monitors, who then relay information to the police. By relaying a password to the monitor, the ow ner can avoid false alarms reaching the police.
Security alarm systems aren’t cheap, they can run in the thousands of dollars. "Whether they’re cost effective or not I don’t know,” McEachem said. “They prov ide a great sense ofsecunty for people "
Guadalupe River flow boosted to 170 cubic feet per second
Herald-Zeitung photo by MICHAEL DARNALL
The combination of an increased release from Canyon Reservoir plus a warm weekend weather forecast is a bonus for water sports enthusiasts who want to extend the summer recreation season.
According to Tommy Hill, chief engineer for the Guadalupe-Blaneo River Authority' (GBRA), the Canyon Reservoir re’.ase was increased to 170 cubic feet per second (eft) at 3 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 26 and w ill remain at this rate until further notice.
Hill explained that reservoir level and inflow help to determine the release rate. The
current level of Canyon Reservoir is 908.62 feet mean sea level (nisi). Reservoir water between 800-909 feet nisi falls within the “conservation pool" range and is managed and released by GBRA. However, the Corps of Engineers is responsible for controlling •>ter in the reservoir's “flood pool" (909-feet nisi), which captures Hood waters to tr “ct people and property downstream.
e current inflow at Spring Branch is 292 cfs, and is “higher right now due to recent rainfall and runoff above Canyon Dam." said Hill.
County to fund child abuse position cut by state
By DENISE DZIUK
The Comal County commissioners approved a contract for about $ 14,000 with the Child Protective Service Agency to help fund a position that was cut from state funding.
Sherry Flume, supervisor for child protective services in Comal County, said the agency is working hard to help the children in Comal County. Last year, 309 case of child abuse and neglect were investigated by the agency. However, the number of children involved is higher because some of the cases involved up to IO children, she said.
“Comal County is a great place to
live, but it’s not so great if you’re an abused or neglected child,” said Flume.
Flume said she believes headway is being made in reducing the number of cases. She said the agency has had 182 cases through August. She said the same period last year had 195 cases. She said it is only a slight decrease but it is largely due to the Family Preservation Program. The goal of the program is to identify families with children who are at largest risk for becoming abused or neglected and work to reduce that risk with the children still in the home. She said she expects an even larger decrease after the program has been in existence longer.
The county currently has 40 chil
dren in foster care.
“I will not hesitate to remove a child from the home whose life is in danger. Some (children) just can’t be maintained at home because it’s just too dangerous,” she said.
State funding for the program was cut, and one ofthe positions cut was the social service technician. Flume said this is a hands-on position, and works directly with the family. The technician transports the family to therapy and doctor appointments, helps obtain sen ices, and teaches parenting, nutrition, and hygiene skills. She said she thinks the number of cases would increase if this position were cut.
Flume asked the county to approve a contract to help fund the position for
‘Comal County is a great place to live, but it’s not so great if you’re an abused or neglected child.’
— Sherry Flume
one year, saying that abused children tit Comal County are “defenseless and voiceless and need our help.” The county would contribute $ 14,175, and the remainder would come from federal hinds. Commissioners court voted unanimously to enter into a contract
w ith the agency.
"It’s kind of like pay me now or pay me later,” said Commissioner "Moe” Schwab, "lf we can save one child from going to juvenile probation or later, adult probation, it's well worth the $14,000."
In other business, the court approved a contract with the Water Oriented Recreation District (WORD), in which WORD gives the county SS,OOO, The funds are to be used for buoys and other material required for the Canyon Lake Buoy Program.
A public hearing was also set for Get.12, at IO a m. at Commissioners Court to consider proposed street name assignments for the C omal County area.The prospect of a lasting peace in the Middle East gets brighter. See Page 4A.