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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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March 24, 2013     Hays Free Press
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Page 2A NEWS Hays Free Press March 27, 2013 __a_s re__/_e ress The Hays Free Press (ISSN 1087-9323) published weekly by Barton Publications, Inc., 122 N. Main St., Buda, TX 78610. Periodicals postage paid at Buda, TX 78610 and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Barton Publications, Inc., P.O. Box 339, Buda, TX 78610. ISSN#1087-9323 NEWS TIPS If you think it's news, we probably do tool Newsroom phone: 512-268-7862 E-mail: news@haysfreepress. com Mail: P.O. Box 339, Buda, Texas 78610 CORRECTIONS Any erroneous reflection upon the character, standing or reputation of any person, firm or corporation which may appear in the pages of the Hays Free Press will be corrected upon being brought to the attention of the publisher. DEADLINES The deadline for display advertising and any contributed news copy in the Hays Free Press is 5 p.m. Friday the week prior to publication. The deadline for Letters to the Editor and classified word advertising in the Hays Free Press is noon Monday the week of publication, though we encourage readers and advertisers to observe the Friday deadline. LETTERS GUIDELINES We welcome locally written letters to the editor on timely topics of community interest. We ask that you keep them to about 350 words in length and that you not indulge in personal attacks on private individuals. Letters may be edited for brevity and clarity. All letters should be signed by the author and include a daytime phone number where the author can be contacted for verification. Letter writers are limited to one letter per month. Letters can be emailed to csb@haysfreepress.com HISTORY Founded April 10, 1903, by Thomas Fletcher Harwell as The Kyle News, with offices on the corner of Burleson and Miller Streets in the town's oldest remaining building. It merged into The Hays County Citizen in 1956. The paper consolidated with The Free Press in October, 1978. During its more than lO0-year history the newspaper has maintained offices at more than a dozen locations in Kyle and Buda. Trash troubles begin at Buda Sportsplex BY MOSES LEOS III moses@haysfreepress.com Trash, plastic bottles, candy wrappers. It is an all too com- mon sight in today's world of urbanization. And it is a shame to see it at sports fields where children play. Unfortunately, this im- age has emerged at the Buda Sportsplex, where more and more litter is being left behind at picnic areas and around the parking lots. "This is new," said Buda Assistart City Manager Brian LaBorde, who is currently as- sisting Buda in the Parks and Recreation Department until the new parks director comes onboard. "We will start inves- tigating this immediately." LaBorde said the Buda Parks Department continues to work diligently to ensure that trash is properly handled and disposed of. "We try to stay on top of the issue as much as possible," LaBorde said. "If the trash bins are overloaded, our guys are there to take care of it." LaBorde said that many sports leagues using the sportsplex pick up any trash they have while on site. But Buda is trying to rec- tify the littering situation. Brainstorming sessions will take place when new Parks and Recreation Director An- drew Czimskey takes office on Friday. Public outreach has emerged as the top solution, as the city aims to create pub- lic awareness about the proper disposal of garbage. "We want to be proactive on this, rather than reactive," LaBorde said. "Whenever we get information such as this, our goal is to remedy the situ- ation. We will work to make sure that there is no litter in Buda parks." The Buda Sportsplex is lo- cated near the intersection of FM 1626 and 967, close to Dahlstrom Middle School. The complex, which opened in 2009, is a 52-acre park that contains eight sport fields, a hike and bike trail, open park- land and a playscape. PHOTO BY KIM HILSENBECK Increased use of the Buda Sportsplex has resulted in an increase of litter in the park as well. Wider FM 967 with,turn lanes in near futt re plans BY MOSES LEOS III moses@haysfreepress.com With winding turns, blind curves and narrow access along the two-way thorough- fare, Farm to Market Road 967 has long been a difficult stretch of road for local resi- dents to navigate, especially as growth turns this into a dally gridlock. But help could soon be on the way, as the city of Buda, the Texas Department of Trans- portation (TxDOT) and Hays County are trying to alleviate this problem by widening FM 967 to a three lane, undivided roadway between FM 1626 and Loop 4 (Main Street). The widening was part of the Buda Transportation Mas- ter Plan (TMP), completed in February 2013. The study, aided by information from TxDOT, the city of Buda and the Capital Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (CAM- PO), estimates that by the year 2035, close to 89,000 vehicles will travel through FM 967 from FM 1626 to Main Street on a daily basis. In 2011, TxDOT estimat- ed that an average of nearly 18,000Ftvehicles traveled the roadwiy daily, with traffic in- creasing every year since. "Traffic volume has really picked up," Buda City Manager Kenneth Williams said. "With improvements being made along (FM) 1626, (FM) 967 will see residual traffic from that roadway. We hope that by wid- ening 967, it will help relieve local roads." While alleviating traffic is the primary goal of the widen- ing of 967, safety also played a factor in reconstruction. In the Transportation Master Plan, citizens living in the Gar- lic Creek and Cullen Country subdivisions voiced concerns about safety issues. The lack of a central turn lane and traf- fic signal lights make entering and exiting these subdivisions, located on FM 967, a hazard- ous task. "So many subdivisions line (FM) 967. (As aresult) there have been quite a few accidents," Hays County Pct. 2 Commis- sioner Mark Jones aid. "With no mm lane or shoulders, the safety aspect is a driving force for the expansion." The number of accidents occurring along 967 back up Jones' claim. Based on infor- mation obtained from TxDOT, since 2010, a total of 37 ac- cidents have occurred along 967, from 1626 to Main Street. Two of those accidents were reported as incapacitating in- jury crashes, with an addition- al two causing a fatality. The most recent occurred in 2012, when a delivery truck PHOTO BY KIM FRY On Sept. 28 of last year, an accident at FM 967 between a U.S. Foods delivery truck and a passenger vehicle claimed the life of Eileen Winifred Stier, a Creekside Villas resident. travelling along 967 attempted to avoid a car that had slowed to enter the Creekside Villas Apartment complex. The de- livery truck hit the driver side of the vehicle driven by Cheryl Ann Bobick, causing it to ca- reen into a ditch. The resulting accident claimed the life of Ei- leen Winifred Stier. For Hays County and the city, the need to make 967 safer is the ultimate goal, Jones said. "Something must be done." The proposed expansion of FM 967 calls for the roadway to expand to three lanes, with a middle turning lane and shoulders. The reconstruction would level some of the grades that make FM 967 treacherous, Alleged Rapist: Still at large after Feb. 10 attack Continued from pg. 1A as well as straighten the large curve between Cullen Boule- vard and Hannens Way. Future improvements discussed in the TMP call for signal lights at the entrances of subdivisions and a possible addition of a bike lane. According to Jones, ap- proximately $4 million in state budget money will be utilized to help reconstruct FM 967, with TxDOT funding $500,000 for engineering and design. TxDOT hired the Parsons- Brinckerhoff engineering firm for the reconstruction design work. "In discussion with Tx- DOT, the widening of the road itself is encouraging," Williams said. "If all goes according to plan, construction would be- gin in January 2014 ... We do not anticipate it to be too diffi- cult a project. We have most of the right-of-way available." According to the Master Plan, the widening of this stretch of 967 would involve 90 feet of right-of-way. The Master Plan also calls for the preservation of the natural beauty along FM 967. The goal for all parties in- volved is to "minimize impact to historic trees," according to the TMP 'round Garlic Creek and Cullen Country, there are some trees where decisions have to be made on which side of the road to widen," Williams said. However, Williams and Jones both understand that the wid- ening of 967 is paramount to the development of Buda and Hays County. Without it, the area cannot feasibly maintain the steady growth it has seen. Williams said inconve- niences will occur during the future construction phase, but added, "The goal is to incon- venience as less as possible." "You have to look at the end result," Williams said. "The improvement will help the quality of life. We think it will be key to the development of Buda." Construction on FM 967 is projected to be completed in late 2014 to early 2015. Cuervo (Tequila) given to her by (Salinas)," according to the affidavit. "Victim 1 commented she felt unusually intoxicated for the amount of alcohol she had," the affidavit said. Victim 2 recounted a simi- lar story and said she, too, "felt unusually intoxicated for the amount of alcohol she had to drink" - three bottles of beer and two shots, according to the affidavit. Both victims told police that they were unaware if "anything was put" in their drinks. Victim 1 told police that shortly after drinking she "passed out" on a chair in the metal building they were drinking in before being awak- ened by two unknown male friends of Salinas who offered her a couch in the living room of a light blue trailer, next to the metal building, to lie down on, the affidavit said. Victim 1 said she observed Victim 2 lying on a mattress in the living room of the trail- er. Victim 1 then lay down on the couch and Hernandez sat down at the end of the couch before "scooting closer" and eventually allegedly sexually assaulted her, according to the affidavit. "Victim 1 advised she tried to push him away, but he held her shoulders and arms down. Victim 1 advised (Hernandez) WAYS FOR YOU TO GET INVOLVED IN THE FIGHT AGAINST CANCER: Be a part of a TEAM: Participation is easy- gather your friends, family and/or co-workers and create your team online t Become a Corporate SPONSOR: Businesses choosing to sponsor our local event play a large role in supporting the American Cancer Society% patient programs and services.Sponsorships available at a variety of levels. Purchase a LUMINARIA: Remember or Honor a loved one by dedicating a luminaria to be lit during our event.A suggested donation of $5 will help light the way to a cure. SURVIVORS: We will be honoring you at our Survivor Dinner on Tuesday, April 9th! Please make sure you have registered online in order to receive your invitation. For more information about the 2013 Relay for Life of Buda/Kyle please visit: www.relayforlife.org/ budakyletx or contact Sarah Teeter, Event Chair at smwjwtahoo.com or (512) 468-4909 RELAY FOR LIF: did not wear a condom and she believes he ejaculated inside of her. During this time, Victim 1 advised Victim 2 was being sexually assaulted by (Salinas) on the mattress on the floor of the living room," the affidavit said. But the alleged sexual as- saults were only beginning. Victim 1 said that after the first incidents of alleged rape, the suspects then said, "let's switch," according to the af- fidavit, at which point Salinas grabbed Victim 1 "pulled her by her wrists to a back room of the trailer where (Salinas) threw her onto a mattress." Victim 1 described her fight against her alleged attacker, at one point telling him "to get the (expletive) off me," but to no avail as (Salinas) allegedly continued to sexually assault- ed her without a condom, ac- cording to the affidavit. ButVictim l's alleged trauma was not yet done; she told po- lice (Salinas) then sodomized her, the affidavit said. Victim 2, who told police she "blacked out" after drink- ing three beers and two shot said she "doesn't remember anything except waking up na- ked on a mattress on the living room floor of the trailer," ac- cording to the affidavit. 'Victim 2 could only recall, according to the affidavit, Sali- nas having sex with her. She also said she thought he had sodomized her, according to the affidavit. Salinas has been in custody since his March 18 arrest and is bring held on a $200,000 bond. Kyle Police Chief Jeff Bar- nett said his department has sought the assistance of both Austin and Travis County law enforcement to serve the ac- tive sexual assault warrant on Hernandez. I