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March 15, 2017     Hays Free Press
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March 15, 2017
 

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+ Page 4A Hays Free Press March 15, 2017 .a says vozces BY SAMANTHA SMITH news@haysfreepress.com City of Buda represen- tatives had a successful run during Buda's Inaugu- ral Legislative Day at the capitol on last Wednesday. According to Buda Public Information Officer David Marino, the trip was a joint effort of city of Buda staff, Buda Econom- ic Development Corpo- ration and Buda Area Chamber of Commerce. "It was a very produc- tive day," Marino said. Marino said Buda representatives split off into small groups with gift baskets in hand to visit every office in the Capitol in order to convey the im- portance of certain bills, such as Aquifer Storage and Recovery (ASR) and the use of Hotel Occu- pancy Tax (HOT) funds to improve sportsplex facilities, on the legislative agenda. In addition to the directors of city depart- ments, a few Buda city council members were in PHOTO COURTESY OF THE CITY OF BUDA Buda City Manager Kenneth Williams and State Representative Jason Isaac talk during Buda's day at the legislature. attendance to press Buda's interests at the capitol. Buda Mayor Todd Ruge, council member Lee Urbanovsky and council member George Haehn took part in Buda's first Legislative Day and got a peek behind the curtain at politics at the state level. "I think it went very well," Ruge said. "It opened a lot of doors for US." Marino said the main objective behind the Legislative Day for Buda officials was to "make connections" with state legislators in order to "let Buda's voice be heard at the state level." Approximately 30 to 40 people from Buda, includ- ing local business owners, took half the day visiting the 200 various offices at the capitol. "Every office in the state (Capitol) saw someone from Buda," Ruge said. According to Mari- no, the other half of the day was set aside for an educational session where Buda officials heard legis- lators discuss bills on ASK transportation issues and HOT funds. According to the Buda Economic Development Corporations Director Ann Miller, the Buda Tour- ism department contrib- uted to the Buda basket by giving pens and koozies. Miller also said that the EDC board had some promotional items to con- tribute to the gift baskets, including ]ardine's chili seasoning. Miller said the visit's funding came collectively from the three entities and was "a team effort". Legislators seemed in- terested in the legislative priorities of Buda, Miller said, and some circled agenda items after talking with Buda officials. "I'm calling this one our inaugural (Legislative Day) since we plan on having a day at the capitol every session even if there is no Buda legislation up for discussion," Miller said. Currently the two main legislative priorities for Buda, ASR and HOT bills are on the floor for discus- sion. iii!?ii iii!i i)!i !!ili!!iiiiiiiiiiiii?!ii!ii!C!i ili Hit-And-Run: Family still needs answers Continued from pg. 1A Through the help of a gofundme account, Karin and others have crowd- sourced $1,200 that will be offered as a reward for information leading to an arrest in her son's case. That amount is in addi- tion to a $1,000 reward of- fered by Crime Stoppers. Kar'm said the motive behind offering the re- ward was to reinvigorate interest in her son's case. While she passed along potential leads from her Facebook page to police immediately after the incident, Karin said the leads are starting to "die down." Mince, 15, was killed when he was struck by a red Dodge Ram 3500 dually pickup truck while walking along FM 2001 near Niederwald. The pickup, according to au- thorities, had a welder in the bed and would have had right side damage and a missing side mirror. But according to a De- partment of Public Safety spokesperson, there are currently no new leads in the investigation. Karin said authorities have been very limited on information they have released to her because the investigation remains active. She said they don't want to provide details they are not ready to release. "We're still looking and we're still vested in this," Karin said. "We're serious to find the person who did this." But for Karin and her family, finding justice is the goal as the investiga- tion nears its third month. Karin said she hopes the person "would have somewhat of a con- science" to give them- selves up. However, she said the search has never "been about vengeance, never been about hate," but to get answers and give her family peace of mind. She wants answers for herself, as well as her two surviving children. "It's beyond me how someone could do some- thing like that and not have any ill feelings," Karin said. "Knowing what you have done. It's in the news. It's not like they don't know. I'm not sure how they sleep and con- tinue with their life." Even as she waits for justice to come, Karin remembers a son who wanted to have a job, find a wife, raise children and live a life "making people happy." "It's sad to realize how wonderful we was," Kar'm said. "Hearing all of the wonderful stories and lovely things he's done for (friends), it's amazing." ~!ili!!!i i ! ii iiiili~i iilii ~iiii! 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