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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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June 5, 2003     Hays Free Press
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June 5, 2003
 

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Page 4 The Free Press June 5, 2003 Barring some unexpected hitch in the petition process, Kyle voters will spend the hot summer months debat- ing whether Mayor James Adkins, who is now serving his third term of office, will be removed from office. It definitely won't be a pleasant experience for the Mayor, who has been unop- posed the last two times he was on the ballot. Based on the only other recall election in the history of the county, it will almost certainly get nasty and highly personal. Thirty years ago, a group of San Marcans, angered by what they considered to be a huge increase in utility rates, gathered a sufficient number of petitions to force a recall elec- tion for five incumbent council members. After a bitter campaign, the recall was soundly defeated, (1,564 to 960) but it took at least five years for broken friendships to heal and the town to recover from the eco- nomic and emotional damage that was sustained during the hectic six week campaign: This newspaper was head- quartered in Kyle at the time, but we were a countywide pub- lication and we covered the election in great depth. Although there has been an enormous amount of change in every aspect of life over the intervening three decades, the emotions that govern friend- ships and interpersonal rela- tionships have probably changed the least. With a considerable degree of sorrow, we suspect that those of us who live within the city limits of Kyle are in for some rough sledging over the next few months We are fond of quoting Emerson: "Consistency is the hob-gobblin of small minds." But, in the case of this recall election we admit to being con- sistent. We felt in 1973 that recall involves dispensing a dishon- orable discharge, or even court marshal, to a person chosen by a majority of voters on a par- ticular day and that it should not be invoked except in cases of malfeasance or outright dis- honesty That remains our opinion today. Approximately 400 Kyle citizens signed the recall peti- tion, but we'll wager only a handful believe that James Adkins is dishonest or that he has committed acts of commis- sion or omission that warrant his dishonorable discharge from the post of Mayor. To quote from our editorial at that time of the San Marcos recall, "That is the crux of the matter. Recall is very serious and very final. It is not the proper way to settle philosoph- ical differences, petty personal quarrels, or whether an office holder is doing as good a job as a particular constituent would like for him to do." Our city charter grants the petitioners the fight to take the action that they have embarked upon. But they are playing a most dangerous game at a time when Kyle's economic future has never been brighter and cultural, recreational and his- torical advancements are being reeled off at an impressive rate. Kyle's property tax rate is less than half what it was 10 years ago and its sales tax rev- enue has more than quadru- pled. The city has more money in the bank than it has ever had before and its expenditures last year were lower and its income greatel: than had been antici- pated by its budget. Folks should be bragging about being from Kyle and not wincing at headlines in the regional newspaper and on big city television. Our cup is at least half-full, and not half-empty. Thirty-years ago, this news- paper printed a list of the peo- ple who signed the San Marcos petition and more than 20 per- cent asked that their names be removed because the petition carriers had" been less than forthright in their presenta- tions. We make no similar allega- tions against this batch of peti- tion carriers, but the recall peti- tion is now public record and the names of the signers are part of the public record. At the very least these signers will be besieged over the next few months by campaigners from both sides of the fence. There is no doubt that some of the recall leaders"true pur- pose is to try to run off City Manager Tom Mattis. Getting rid of the Mayor is just the first step before they attempt to climb that tall hill. Kyle is finally emerging from the shadows of defeatism thfit has pervailed since the "bust" of the late 1980s. Mattis is a key player in that revival and folks who are committed to the town's well-being will fight hard to keep him on board for a good while to come. Some of these recall leaders are also quite confused about theway the council-manager form of government operates. They want to micro-manage the operation of the city, con- trary to the wishes of the peo- ple who overwhelmingly adopted our city charter three years ago. Perhaps a workshop could be organized for them, head- lined by a political scientist who would patiently explain to them that the existing charter is the city's rulebook and wishing that it wasn't doesn't do any- thing but confuse the issue i~!!~ii~!i~iii~i!ii!~i~i~i!!iii~i~i;i~i!iiii!iiiiiii~ii~ii~i~i!i!i~i~i~i~i~i;i!i~i~ii~i ;i)~iii!!i~ii~iiii~!~i!i~i~iiiiiiii~!i~i~iiiiii~iiii!iiiiii~i~i!i~i:i~iii!i:~;~i ! No one has ever been able to explain to my satisfaction exactly what makes an economic recession begin. That may be because no one really knows, or it may be because I am too dense to understand. Thinking it might be the lat- ter, I began to read up on eco- nomics, and every economic expert, it seems, begins and ends with the Gross National Product, which is held in the same esteem as archangels. GNP - that's all the stuff that is made and sold. You know, it's something you can put your hands on and either use immediately or say, "Hmm. I have to put this somewhere. Maybe I should rent a storage unit." The GNP, I read, is crucial to our nation's health and well- being. Since I am dedicated to the country I was fortunate enough to be born in, I began to wonder what I was contributing to the GNP. Now I'm a commit- ted consumer. Any friend or fam- ily member can verify this When I go shopping I find all kinds of things I didn't even know existed, and suddenly they seem incredibly important to ongoing life I buy these things, and sometimes I even use them, but I don't think this activity really counts. You see, I don't make things that someone else can consume. Man, what a downer I am probably responsible for the cur- rent distress in the economy I sit in my office all day not produc- ing one Countable item - not a light bulb, a barbecue skewer or a disposable diaper. Ym a failure under the GNP rules, and I start- ed to think of all the other people who are failures and probably should have their citizenship revoked. Take teachers, for example. Do teachers produee anything that can be counted and priced? Absolutely not. It is obvious, therefore, that teachers should be outlawed, with the possible exception of those who teach others how tomake something - like plastic garbage bags or a stone ix. Stone axes were very big at one time, and if we do away with teachers they may come back into vogue. They could be sold. Stone axes are good; teachers are bad. Okay, so how about physi- cians, dentists, nurses and med- ical technicians? My dentist once made a tooth for me and installed it. I paid for it, so I guess he qual- ifies as a GNP contributor, but others in this category are 'defi- nitely ix-nay. They need to get to work making something. This is just the tip of the ice- berg. We have to think carefully about these things and weed out the drones or the GNP is in big trouble. If the GNP goes south, I'm told, this nation will be like a big mudslide down a California both good because they are man- ufactured items sold at prices that exceed the cost of produc- tion. Profits on one group are net taxed, of course, but that could be fixed. Besides, once we get everyone to work making some- thing profitable, we won't need many taxes. Prisons present a problem. Obviously we have to have them; otherwise we wouldn't mountain. :: know who the criminals were. What about musicians?, one is sort of disappointing to me because I've been trying to pound my way through "Rhapsody in Blue" for six months, and just as I'm about to master it, I discover it's my patriotic duty to turn in my piano. Once I started thinking correctly, it all became clear. Musicians who produce CDs that can be sold are good. Musicians who do not produce CDs are bad. lce T, with his rap about looting, rape and cop- killing, is extra good, because millions of his recordings are sold - for money, believe it or not. School band concerts and community orchestras are bad. Sometimes they don't even charge admission, for heaven's sake. How is that supposed to help the economy? Then there are drugs, legal and illegal varieties. These are productivity. Children are the most notori- ous non-producers of all. We : keep them around for mere senti- I~ :: mental reasons, hoping they will someday grow up and can spinach, or some such thing, that can be sold. Wouldn't you think the framers of the Constitution would have said more about the GNP, given its importance to our national identity? Thomas produce license plates mention it: And we ifi0ag The (or used to), buttons, and rocks was smart. chopped up into sizes suitable King George would have sat for building more prisons, up and taken notice if the Maybe that's productive, but I'm Declaration of Independence had not sure if they make a profit, read, "When in the course of We'll have to put prisons down human events it becomes neces- as marginal, and the same can be sary for one nation, whose gross said for the court system. Courts national product is $X, to sever are a real drag on the economy, its ties to another nation, whose but they do produce criminals, gross national product is who are necessary if we are to $XX " Yessir, old George : : continue the productive work would have realized the colonists that may or may not be done in knew a thing or two and would- prisons, n't have been so quick to send This brings us to another over his Redcoats. [ marginal group, the accountants, Well, so much for past mis- slugs who don't produce one takes. Onward and upward. I am single thing besides marks on closing my psychoanalytic prac- paper. Someone has to keep tice and have applied for a job in : :: track of what has been produced, a flea collar factory. I urge you, however, and tell us if a profit is my fellow Americans who are being made on these things, so not producing anything, to do the accountants may have to stay in same. And may God bless spite of their obvious lack of real America. How does cutting Synergy help? ACROSS 1 TXIsm: tall dog in the ' (leader) 5 "those" so. of the border 6 TXisrn: boose. (lall) 7 Bowie's Altmo ed(2 wds.) 8 TXIsm: "couldn't find hide hair of him 9 Valley citrus drink 12 TXlsm: "does cat climbing ~ear? (yes) 17 TX runner Larrleu Smith 19 TX ,Johnny Horton'e "North to 21 sign the back of a check 22 TX Pod of *Frasler" 23 Hurricane Carla caused 31 In TX ('61) 28 Vega h.e. is class .--- 29 TX Robin Wright'o husbal~ Saan 30 TX Ronne Reevus tune: . -- But I'm Goring There" 31 "IX actress Prentlos 35 Dallas City Hall designer I. 35 ~: "couldn't fight his way out 42 Chevy pickup 44 TX Sam the Sham & The Pharaoh's 'Ready 46 Musial 47 Ranger reliever in '93 & '94, Carpenter 4,9 ".~. dies' (good day) 50 informed 51 "Don't use that of voice wtth trio!' 52 TXIom: ' that like an armedlllo neeckl an interstate' 53 .TX Jeannle C.'s *Harper Valley . " 54 TXIom: "itdon't up" The Original by Charley & Guy Orbison 55 TX Vikki Carr album ' Hombres" 57 loud noise 58 TX Chester Nlmltz naval rank (abbr.) 59 TXism: 'take a Io0k ' DOWN 1 Groves, TX event (2 wds.) 2 TXlem: "rough --- (~ 3 ~ City, TX 4 San Antonio TV station 9 4,840 =q. yds. of 13( land 10 "l'Xlsm: ". ~. a coyote wi~ a rubber chicken" 11 wide boot size 12' ugly old woman 13 TXlsm: "best I.ever wrapped . ' (dallclouo) 14 .S~ TX 15 sportl cable not. 16 TXism:" to" (similar) 18 Dallas restaurants are .-smelting. 27 Glen Rose dine- 20 TXIsm; *bat .-- saur track Is 38" eyelash" (blink)from ~ . toe 23 Mav'o "Nelly" (inlt.) 32 All, no h.s. class 24 Siecke State Forest 25 "money mekem." 26 TXIsm: 'keyboard wrangler" 37 TXism:"no brag, just 38 TXlsm: Just in the bucket" 39 TX-bassd film "The Untamed 40 TX aclreeo Gwynne 41 cattle prod 43 Dallas' West . " 4:5 this Tax will be 12th In "Rlng of Honor" 0nit.) 33 "l'Xlsm: 'pushing 43 facing the Gulf bluebonnets" (dead) 49 partiality 34 hlstodc TX ranch 56 TX Mac Davis' 36 TXism: *don~t give "Baby Don~t Get hoot -- a holier' Hooked " Dear Editor: This is in response to an article that was written on your current events column of 5/22/03 about the Synergy program shutdown. Some parents are concerned about this decision and have tried to find out the true reason(s) why this program has been selected to be shutdown. The Synergy program has been funded by grants that covered all the expenses of the program. Inclusively, two additional teachers were hired for the school with the grant money to compensate for the three teachers pulled for the pro- gram. I would like for Mr. Ebell to explain how the cost of the Synergy program is involved with the cost or the budget of the school? Has this program negative- ly impacted the school? I believe the contrary. What exactly has this program robbed the school of to want it shutdown? The pro~'~m had grant money left over this year to mn for anoth- er year (and the extension to mn the program was granted by the Department of Education); why would the school not want to allow the student this opportunity? What is Mr. Ebell planning to do with this leftover money from the grant? In addition, Mr. Ebell decided to remove a teacher from the Synergy program, who was funded by the grant, to be added to the school budget instead. How does this action help the school budget? During the last school board meeting, Mr. Ebell attempted to put the blame on the Synergy teachers. These teachers have bent forwards and backwards for the students, to teach them. I cannot even picture these teachers as uncooperative. Are we talking about the same teachers? Let's also clear something about the $245,000 that Mr. Ebell mentioned. This was a projected amount for a new three-year grant that has been worked on, and it pro- jected to include some expansions to the Synergy program. And again, this money is not from the school budget -- this is money from a grant that teachers, and .community volunteers worked on and got approved. Why was no parent input was considered on this decision? A decision that affected our children who are developed and benefited by this program. Can Mr. Ebell to respond to our concerns? Nilza Iris Rivera Kyle