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New Braunfels Resident’s River Pass Isn’t “Free”

2totubeNew Braunfels residents will get to join the crowds gathering along the Comal River every single summer holiday or weekend day, if we want to play in our rivers. (Which are actually State owned rivers.)

Our New Braunfels City Council not only promoted the ancient tradition of queuing up, they made sure we do so while visiting our Parks more often, too!

Even residents who live on the rivers and/or will only be on the Guadalupe will find themselves in Hinman or Prince Solms in order to use their “free” Pass to obtain wrist bands each and every single day if you enter or exit either the Comal or Guadalupe by City land with your tube, kayak or canoe. (noodle, life jacket, snorkel or scuba gear, too?)

 

Here’s the City Council ordinance info:

Between Memorial Day and Labor Day of each year, all persons in possession of water oriented recreational equipment on the premises known as the City Tube Chute, Prince Solms Park, Hinman Island Park or using public exits on the Comal or Guadalupe Rivers, must be wearing a city-issued wristband. ( http://www.nbtexas.org/DocumentCenter/View/7497)

 

From the nbtexas.org River Pass page:

Residents

New Braunfels Residents, who reside inside the corporate city limits, can receive a Resident River Pass at no charge to avoid paying the River Management Fee.

Then take your Resident River Season Pass (or your purchased Resident Swim Pass or Resident Family Swim Pass) to one of the three booths set up at Hinman Island Park and Prince Solms Park, or to a River Outfitter, to obtain your free wristband when you tube on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays between Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day.

AND:

Note: If you are resident using private property to enter or exit the river while tubing, but will still utilize public land to get on or off of the river, you will need a wristband to be in compliance with the ordinance. ( http://www.nbtexas.org/riverpass)

Won’t the “last exit” be fun this year?

Just in case you were wondering who and what the “Municipal Code” covers:

Public river exit means Cypress Bend Park, Lincoln Street River Exit, Garden Street River Exit, Hinman Island Park, City Tube Chute and any other City-owned right-of-way or property with frontage on the Comal or Guadalupe Rivers currently not leased to another entity.

Water-oriented recreational equipment means tubes, kayaks, rafts, canoes and all other forms of personal watercraft.

There are going to be three (3) (Yes, 3!) booths where these wrist bands can be obtained.  The 3 booths will be at Hinman Island and Prince Solms Park – none at the City limits or parks along the Guadalupe.

Won’t we all have fun getting to know our neighbors and the visitors to our City as we all line up in front of these three booths on Saturday mornings? After finding parking?

Here’s an idea: The bands may also be obtained from a River Outfitter. Maybe the Outfitters will deliver the wrist bands to our New Braunfels residences?

The City Council and Mayor can be reached, here.  http://www.nbtexas.org/index.aspx?nid=298

You can call 830-221-4000 to try to get more information from the City of New Braunfels. Good luck!

 

 

Comal ISD and New Braunfels Early Voting Places and Times

There’s still 2 more days for early voting in the Comal Independent School District Bond and School Board Election. Regular Election Day is May 9.

 Here’s the times and places for early voting on Monday and Tuesday!
(Thanks to the New Braunfels Republican Women for the information!)

May 4 & 5Early voting

During early voting, you have the opportunity to cast both votes at one place!

You can cast both your votes for New Braunfels City Council (Districts 3 & 4) and Comal ISD School Board (Districts 1, 2, 5, & 6) and school bond locations at:

 

The Comal County Elections Office          May  58am to 5pm

178 E. Mill Street, Suite 10                                    May 47am to 7pm

New Braunfels  78130

Bulverde City Hall                                             May  48am to 5pm

30360 Cougar Bend                                                May 57am to 7pm

Bulverde  78163

 

Garden Ridge City Hall                                      May  58am to 5pm

9400 Municipal Pkwy                                              May 47am to 7pm

Garden Ridge  78266

 

 

Early voting for CISD School Board (Districts 1, 2, 5, & 6) and school bond only:

May 4 & 57am to 7pm

Bill Brown Elementary              Hoffmann Lane Elementary      Rebecca Creek Elementary

20410 Hwy 46 W.                       4600 FM 306                                  125 Quest Ave.

Spring Branch  78070               New Braunfels  78132                 Spring Branch  78070

 

Comal ISD Support Serv.           Indian Spring Elementary          Smithson Valley Middle

Admin. Bldg.                                 25751 Wilderness Oak                6101 FM 311

1404 I-35 N.                                  San Antonio  78261                      Spring Branch  78070

New Braunfels  78130

 

Church Hill Middle                     Kinder Ranch Elementary          Timberwood Park Elementary

1275 N. Business 35                  2035 Kinder Pkwy.                       26715 S. Glenrose

New Braunfels  78130              San Antonio  78260                      San Antonio  78260

 

Clear Spring Elem.                       M.H. Specht Elementary

550 Avery Parkway                    25815 Overlook Parkway

New Braunfels  78130              San Antonio  78260

********************************************************************************************************************    

 

Saturday, May 9 – Election Day – Polls open from 7am – 7pm

 

New Braunfels City Council (Districts 3 & 4)

Election Day polling locations at:

 

**NB City Council District 3 – Seele Elementary School, 540 Howard Street, New Braunfels

**NB City Council District 4 – Faith United Church, 970 N. Loop 337, New Braunfels

 

For City Council District Maphttp://www.nbtexas.org/DocumentCenter/Home/View/1480

(also listed on your Voter Registration Card)

 

Comal ISD School Board (Districts 1, 2, 5, & 6) and school bond only

Election Day polling locations at:

 

Single Member District 1                              Single Member District 2                  Single Member District 3

Clear Spring Elementary                                  Faith United Church                               Rebecca Creed Elementary

550 Avery Parkway                                           970 N. Loop 337                                      125 Quest Ave.

New Braunfels 78130                                       New Braunfels 78130                           Spring Branch  78070

Single Member District 4                              Single Member District 5                  Single Member District 6

Smithson Valley Middle School                      Bulverde City Hall                                   M.H. Specht Elementary

6101 FM 311                                                        30360 Cougar Bend                               25815 Overlook Parkway

Spring Branch 78070                                        Bulverde  78163                                      San Antonio  78260

 

Single Member District 7

Garden Ridge City Hall

9400 Municipal Parkway

Garden Ridge 78266

 

LOL at the Bill of Rights?

     Last February 14th, 18 year old Justin River Carter made a comment during an argument with a few acquaintances on Facebook that would shock most people, but I doubt that many people would take his hyperbole seriously enough to feel threatened:

“I think I’ma [sic] shoot up a kindergarten and watch the blood of the innocent run down and eat the beating heart of one of them.”

 

The truly shocking and frightening thing to me, though, was the reaction of my own local law enforcement officials, including one who told San Antonio WOAI  radio that it was necessary to arrest and hold Carter for months, so there wouldn’t “be questions about why more was not done to stop him.”

 

I want to know why more was not done to protect Carter from abuse by New Braunfels and Comal County law enforcement community. No “LOL”  No “JK”

 

 

     The actual conversation that  caused Justin Carter to be arrested no longer exists on the Internet, according to Facebook. The only “evidence” is a screen shot clip picture of the comment taken by the person who called the Austin Police Department’s Crime Stoppers, incorrectly stating that Carter lived near a school in that City.  Based on that anonymous tip, Austin PD had US Marshals to arrest Carter at his job in San Antonio and transferred him from Bexar County to their jail on February 14, 2013.

 

 

      A problem – for the Austin police — developed when they eventually discovered that Carter lives in New Braunfels, not Austin. I don’t know how they found out where he worked, but couldn’t verify his address until after the arrest.

 

 

     One month after his arrest, and still without a court hearing, a search of Carter’s home, or any evidence that Carter owned a gun or had made any violent plans, APD invited the New Braunfels police to drive to Austin to interview Carter in their jail.  He spoke to them without his lawyer, because he foolishly thought that he would be able to clear up the confusion if he explained the comment.

 

     This was a huge mistake.

     Someone at the NBPD decided to file his own complaint with Comal County Criminal District Attorney Jennifer Tharp, who convinced a Grand Jury to indict Carter for a third degree felony charge of making “terroristic threats.” (Read the Statute here.)

 

     District Judge Jack Robison doubled the bail from the $250,000 set in Austin to half a million dollars.

 

 

     Sometime later, Carter was moved from Travis County to Comal County,  where he remained in Comal County jails from late March until July 10th, when an anonymous donor posted bond on his behalf.

 

 

I’ve been told that the DA makes it a habit to charge the maximum possible and then offer “plea bargains” that are no bargain, at all. As long as the innocent-until-proven-guilty won’t admit guilt, the hearings and procedures can drag out for years before an actual trial. As to that ridiculous bail amount, it seems that it’s routine for judges automatically double the bail anytime someone is indicted, regardless of the amount of bail in place before.

 

     Carter, as is customary, was placed in the same jail with convicted criminals in both Austin and New Braunfels. He suffered injuries due to abuse by other inmates and his father reported that he was transferred to different jail facilities several times and was kept in solitary confinement and nude, on suicide watch, for many days.

 

 

     On December 12, 2013, Judge Robison announced his decision not to drop the indictment. The next hearing on the case is scheduled for January 28, 2014.

 

 

     A more complete review of the history of this case through July, 2013, is here.  You can read Carter’s mother’s version of the story and intermittent updates, here.

 

 

Just don’t get arrested for anything in New Braunfels. And don’t talk to our police without a lawyer, if you are.

Options gang ready to go home

image

We’ve been in Joplin, Missouri, learning how to run an STI (sexually transmitted diseases) clinic. Now, we’re going home!

Comal County Early Voting

The first day of early voting in Comal County yielded double the voter turn out on the same day in 2008, with more than 3100 voters compared to 1700.

I voted on the second day, and was pleased to find that the Comal County Voting Center on Landa Street in New Braunfels was up to the task. The County has designed an efficient and organized Center, with fast moving lines and 3 stations set up to check in voters.

I cast my first “straight Party” ticket since 1992, today. The first “page of the electronic ballot offers the option to vote for one Party or the other, and a vote for Republicans took me through each page of all the candidates and offices, allowing me to review and view the names of each candidate I voted for and to see who I wasn’t voting for. I hope that those of you who are tempted to just vote the top of the ticket or for a few candidates will consider taking my endorsement of the Republican candidates all up and down the ballot, with the ease of the straight Party vote! You’ll get the well known candidates, like Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan, Donna Campbell for SD 25, Susan Narvaiz for Congressional District 35 and Kevin Webb for Comal County Commissioner, Pct 3, and you also support judges like Scott Fields, Jeff Rose and Bob Pemberton!

 

No matter where you live in Comal County, or where your regular voting place is, you can cast your ballot at any of the early voting places or times. Here’s the early voting opportunities in Comal County:

• New Braunfels: 345 Landa, Suite 101. Oct. 23-26, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Oct. 27, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Oct. 28, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Oct. 29 — Nov. 2, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

• Canyon Lake: CRRC Community Center, 125 Mabel Jones Dr. Oct. 23-26, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Oct. 27, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Oct. 28, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Oct. 29 — Nov. 1, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Nov. 2, 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

• Bulverde: Bulverde / Spring Branch Library, 131 Bulverde Crossing. Oct. 23-26, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Oct. 27, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Oct. 28, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Oct. 29-Nov. 1, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Nov. 2, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

• Garden Ridge: City Hall, 9400 Municipal Parkway. Oct. 23-26, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Oct. 27, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Oct. 28, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Oct. 29 — Nov. 1, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Nov. 2, 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

 

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