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Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
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August 10, 2011     Hays Free Press
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August 10, 2011
 

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+ LOBO KICKOFF Lobe' football opens scrimmage season in front of packed house. - Page 1B Local doctor as F-16 fight - Pap lC enjoys side job pilot. q~ Barton Publications, Inc. HaysFreePress.com Vol. 109 No. 18 Serving Buda, Kyle and Northeast Hays County 75 BY SEAN BATURA news@haysfreepress.com A nonprofit corporation comprised of public entities in Central Texas, in- cluding Hays County and several small- er entities within the count, on Mon- day submitted a bid to buy the Lower Colorado River Authority's sPraWling water and wastewater utilities. : ; The 27 or 28 utilities LCRA h~ put up for sale, flung from Matagorda County on the t:oast to San Saba in the Hill Country, include the West Travis County RegionalWater System, which See a map of the West Travis County serves about 7,000 residents directly in Regional Water System and communi- Hays County and others through water ties it serves at haysfrespress.conVlcra supplies and utility districts that buy water wholesale. Hays County Pct. 4 Commissioner board offered only as much money as RayWhisenant, a Dripping Spring Re- it estimated users of the systems could publican, represents the county on pay back through revenue bonds the Coalition of Central Texas Utilities backed by future user fees. Answering Development Corporation's board questions at Tuesday's commission- of directors. Whisenant said the UD ers court session from three activists opposing the county's pursuit of the endeavor, Whisenant repeatedly said the court has no intention of commit- ting property tax revenue to fund the acquisition. "I know of no consideration, I've made no offer, and we are not legally obligated to commit ad valorem tax funds from Hays County to the LID or for any purpose associated the LCRA divestiture,"Whisenant said. Whisenant and other officials said disclosing the bid amount could jeop- ardize the coalitions efforts but said the number would eventually be dis- closed, after LCRA chooses a buyer. They also offered few details on how the deal would play out should the Central Texas UDC prevail in its bid to buy the utilities. Whisenant said the preferred scenario involves break- ing the system into components to be owned by various water utilities or and end users who rely on LCRA for water See LCRA BID, pg. 6A I PHOTO BY ~ KIMMONS Honing the senses Buda's ViUDA Bistro staff members share an uncommon similarity. Executive chef Kurt "the Irish chef" Ramborger, right, and sous chef Jacquelyn Doudt work in the ViUDA kitchen. Bo~ are deaf, as well as general manager paul Rutowski and two other employees. Story on 1C. BY WES FERGUSON wes@haysfreepress.com the negative impact in fund- ing over two years. "Beyond that, it gets even more dicey in terms of HaysCISDisbeingpinchedwhether the economy re- on all sides. The state of Texas bounds and schools receive has sharply cut funding. Lo- full funding or not." cal property taxes are lagging behind projections. And new students keep' arriving every day. The district has weathered ~e StOrm for nOW, however, unveiling a proposed budget .~ that is balanced, does not raise the tax rate for prop- LYON erty owners and includes pay raises for teach- ers. "We are being aggressively cautious," Superintendent ]eremy Lyon said. "We know that there is going to be less money coming to Hays CISD next year. We're metering out DIPPING INTO RESERVES The district is having to dip into its general fund to pay for bend debt in' e-com ca]-year. To cover a shortfall in funds used to pay offdebt from-a 2008 bond election, HCISD will transfer $2.5 million from the general fired. Using reserve funds to pay back debt is not something the school district can make a habit of, Lyon said. HAYS CISD BUDGET, pg. 3A BY WES FERGUSON wes@haysfreepress.corn The Buda City Council waded into Hays County's redistricting battle last week, offering sharp words for county commissioners who are in the process of redrawing their district lines. Cour~cil members urged a show of "moral support" for neighbor city Kyle, which would be sliced into thirds by some of the proposed district maps. "It's absolutely criminal to take the fastest- growing city in the county and divide it three or four ways," City Councilman Ron Fletcher said. Redistricting processes usually involve poll- ticians trying to protect their own seats, coun- cil members noted. Hays County's current pro- cess is no exception, they added. "It almost looks like vote harvesting," said City Councilman Todd Ruge. See BUDA ON REDISTRICTING, pg. 3A no more BY BRAD ROLLINS bred@haysfreepress.com The Kyle City Council unanimously passed a resolution on Tuesday, Aug. 2, that urges the Hays County Commissioners Court to avoid lopping off parts of western Kyle into a third commissioner's precinct. The resolution, passed 6-0, asks the court to "formulate a redistricting plan that main- tains the city of Kyle into no more than two precincts in order to preserve the city's unique community of interest and the citi- zens of Kyle." Mayor Lucy Johnson was not at the meet- ing because she was ill, a colleague Said. Hat fellow council members were blunt in their assessments of the county redistricting pro- cess so far. "I hate to use the word 'outrageous' but that's what it appears to me to be," said coun- See KYLE ON REDISTRICTING, pg. 3A Subscdber add~ High school Hays and Lehman high school students can pick up their fall schedules at their respective schools at the following times. HAYS HIGH SCHOOL Thursday: Friday: ~]eniors, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Freshmen, 3-7 p.m. Juniors, 8 a.m.-noon Sophomores, 1-5 p.m. LEHMAN HIGH SCHOOL Thursday: All students, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Friday: All students, 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Toy Story 3 Bring the family out for a free movie at Gregg- Clarke Park. Begins at dusk, Two Tons of Sted Free live music under the stars at Plaza Park in San Marces beginning at 7:30 p.m. Fannem Markets Lockhart Fa~ Market, 8 a.m. on Main Street Buda Farmers Market, 9 a.rn. downtown San Marcoa Market on the Square, 9 a.m. Ddpping Spdngs Farmers Market, 9 &m., Hwy. 290 at RR 12 150 Market, 1 p.m., Michaelis Ranch, W. FM 150, Kyle For a more detailed list of area events, go to haysfreepress.comlcalendar and page 4C of today's paper. Local bike shop - Page 1D is keeping Kyle rolling. m Opinions ............... 4&5A Sports ........................ I&2B Education ................... 3&4B Community .................... 1-6C Obituaries .......................... 2C Calendars .................. 4C Service Directory ......... 2&3D Classifieds ...................... 2D Public Notices .............. 2&4D 4