Newspaper Archive of
Hays Free Press
Kyle, Texas
August 28, 2003     Hays Free Press
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August 28, 2003

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August 28, 2003 Letters to the Editor Page 5 Can The Free Press prove the mayor's leadership? Dear Editor: Kyle City Manager Tom Mattis seems to be conducting a public relations campaign for he and Kyle Mayor James Adkins. The people who circulated the recall petition have repeatedly stated the recall is about leader- ship and the direction of Kyle's future. However, Mattis and the most outspoken 'cf the mayor's supporters have constantly claimed the recall is about the future of the city manager. Bob Barton's newspaper, The Free Press, has been an outspoken supporter of the mayor and the city manager. Given the records of both, one must certainly wonder what either the mayor or the city manager has done to merit such support. Though all newspapers are entitled to their own editorial biases, even the most jaded Of publishers generally report the other side of a controversy. It would seem that journalistic integrity demands the other side of a controversy be, minimally, explored before it is dismissed out-of-hand. I suggest • that The Free Press tackle head on my charge that I can demonstrate lack of leadership, planning and fore- sight on the part of the mayor and city manager by using its own newspaper as proof. The mayor and city manager have not taken, nor announced, plans, initiatives or other concrete actions to actively promote the expansion of Kyle's business community. Business is coming to Kyle because Kyle is growing and for no other reason. The political climate has had little to do with the community's success in land- ing new businesses. HEB is building an even larg- er store than planned because of the rapid growth in Kyle. Local politicsiygJe to do .th how many, loave,ofbread or gallons ot milk HEB can sell to a growing community. Can The Free Press ferret out. stories about the leadership of either the Mayor's or city manag- er's initiatives in bringing busi- nesses to Kyle. Photo opportuni- ties do not count. Can they discuss any proposal that the mayor initi- ated that the city council has enacted? Sherry Anderson Kyle It's time to applaud our school board DearEditor: The Strayhom report has been released and recommendations has been made to the HCISD. At this timE, those few (and getting fewer) who in the past have con- stantly blasted this school board over its financial practices and mismanagement will now know what the rest of us have known all along, This schol board albeit not perfect has done a pretty good job of administering your tax dollars. The Strayhom report recommend- ed ways to save a total of $9.1 mil- lion over the next five years, and with a $63.1 million annual bud- get the average annual savings of $1.8 represents less than 3% of the overall, budget. That tells me that the budget is operating at about a 9/% efficiency rate! You think this district is not growing? Look again, the Strayhom report states that the HCISD is one of the fastest grow- ing districts in Texas. According to the report, HCISD ranked sixth overall in student increase from 1998-2003, at 37.5%, it was near- ly five times higher than the state average and about three times higher in the Austin region. Of course there are areas of improvements that need to be made, and the nay-sayers will point to these and say I told you so. But, I am confident that this board will make the necessary improvements. Let's not @verlook the,fact.that the, Stmyhom raltmrt containedmany "best practices" that the HCISD currently have in operation. The report "highlighted model programs, operations and services provided by HCISD" and further stated that "Other school districts throughout Texas are encouraged to examine these exemplary programs and ser- vices..." One area criticized by the anti- board group was the Wellness Clinics. One of the "best practices" cited in the report was "HCISD decreased absenteeism and emer- gency room visits and increased testing scores at two schools hous- ing a wellness clinic." For a group of hardworking individuals who give so much of their time, receive no money, and are subject to constant criticism by these Monday morning quarter- backs, all while trying to decide whaCs best for your children and your tax dollars, they deserve our support and it's time to stand and applaud their efforts and thank them for a job well done. Eugene S. Lusby, CPA Treasurer, Citizens for Better Schools Buda City of Kyle needs a new leader Dear Editor: I support the recall election and forensic audit of the city coun- cil. I am concerned about expendi- tures that have not made sense to me. My biggest concern is Kyle's leadership. I thought the divisive- ness on the council would improve when the new council members were elected, it doesn't appear to be much better. I am amazed at the personal attacks and mean-spirited behavior and com- ments of people on both sides of issues. Some council members appear to have gotten into the trenches to defend themselves, not the issues. This always results in making issues personal rather than looking for solutions basext.upon whathsbe fohe,grou. i .; : Mayor Adkins is the coramon SCHOOL I00UStC MUSIC LESSONS FOR ALL AGES Piano • Guitar • Violin • Viola • Trumpet • Keyboard Clarinet • Saxophone • Voice • Theory Regular Recitals • Children and Adult Choir Pre-School Music Programs - age 3 & up i> i Fully Qualified Teachers with University Degrees Professional Music Education Facilities -- We use Baldwin and Kawai acoustic pianos and have Roland electronic pianos with music tutors to enhance the learning experience For Adults -- Sixteen week chord study course to learn jazz and popular music phrasings Customer Service -- Desk staff are available during class to provide assistance Two Locations to Serve You... BUda 312-5995 905 N. Loop 4 (200 yards west of HEB along Loop 4) S. Austin . 445-4111 1806 W. Stassney #102 (across from Crockett H.S. along Stassney) denominator on the council, before and after the new members were elected. I have lost faith and trust in his ability to unite the city coun- cil and work for the common good. He may have been able to manage Kyle when it was a small town but Kyle has outpaced his leadership skills. I support the recall election because we need a leader who can unite the city coun- cil. Without faith and trust from many of Kyle's citizens, I don't think he can be effective now. I support the forensic audit because I want to see for myself what has occurred. I become sus- picious and think there may be something to hide when I think people are trying to block my access to our government. As a citizen, I have a right to ask ques- tions and get responses from the leadership. If the audit rex, eals nothing inappropriate or illegal, then my faith and trust in the lead- ership will grow. If there is some- thing inappropriate or illegal, then we can address those issues open- ly with accountability and respon- sibility. My faith and trust in the leadership will still grow. I try to practice the adage that it is possible to disagree without being disagreeable. We need a leader who understands that prin- ciple. We need a leader who can unite us. We need a leader who can get us through our growing pains. Quite simply, we need a new leader. Brenda C. Pisana Kyle Commissioner Burnett and his spin To the Editor: There are times when the spin given to the public has to be cor- rected with facts. This is the case with the article written on Wednesday 8-20-03 in the San Marcos Daily Record, where Bill Burnett is presented as someone who cares how much money the county commissioners saved the taxpayers. Excuse me, but Bill Bumett's record shows absolutely that saving the taxpayers money or spending it wisely is the last thing he is concerned about. Fact #1: Bill Bumett has spent more in the last five years than all of the other three county commis- sioners put together in continuing education. Continuing education is required for County Commissioner, but why does Bill Burnett need so much more edu- cating, and so much of his contin- uing education done outside the State of Texas, than all the Commissioners put together. Fact #2: Bill Bumett is the per- son responsible for presenting the budget that increased the payroll by $1.4 million, and gave the majority of the Sheriff's depart- ment upper management 40 per- cent pay increases, making Hays County Sheriff's Department upper management one of the highest paid in the State of Texas. Fact #3: Bill Bumett accepted political contributions amounting to $3,500.00 all on the same day from the same people who showed up at the county commis- sioners agenda on Aug. 12, requesting county contracts. All of these facts plus a lot more can be found out by any citi- zen using the open records act. The spin needs to stop and the cold hard facts need to be looked at. Sherri Bilson San Mareos Hays CISD Audit, from page 1 tions will help us." Said Trustee Chip DuPont, "We'll have about $270 million in budgets or more in the next five years and this audit found $9 mil- lion in savings. That's not a lot of fat. I was hoping she would find more savings than that." The TSPR shows that the Hays CISD is the fifth-fastest growing school district in Texas, based on enrollment increases from 1998-99 through 2002-03. During that peri- od, the Hays CISD increased to 8,663 students from 6,311, a 37.3 percent increase. The leader is Frisco, a school district near Dallas that increased 148.9 percent during that period to 11,145 students from 4,477. The statewide average growth during that period was 7.7 was 12 percent. Strayhom's key recommenda- tions include: • Implement@ton of a formal curriculum at all grade levels for all subjects, which would smooth the transition between grades and improved preparation for the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS). • Establisment of strategies to identify all students eligible for free and reduced-priced lunches, which could bring the district another $370,000 in state and fed- eml funds. • Establish a process to evalu- ate maintenance services for cost effectiveness. • Reorganize the central" administration to equally distribute , percent, while the average in job duties for better management. Region 13, to wlaich Hays belongs, resource administrative functions to save $616,000 over five years. • Restructure key positions in the transportalion department to eliminate excess staff and save nearly $1.1 million over the next five years. In addition to her recommen- dations, Strayhorn also patted the district on the back for its best practices, including: • The securing of 16 grants totalling $7.8 million to improve academic and staff development programs. • The use of standd architec-' tural designs to control school con- struction costs and save more than $238,000 in architectural fees. • The delivery of school-based health care through two clinics serving all Hays CISD students :' llliize:r: tlte ;: hiiitian ! and dieir ;ibliiigs. I ?lfl| , ' ," , , , r ,,. NOTICE OF INTENTION TO RAISE SALARIES AND ALLOWANCES OF COUNTY ELECTED OFFICIALS • In accordance with section 152.013 of the Texas Local Government Code, the Commissioners' Court of Hays County is publishing the following increases in salaries and allowances for elected officials. These increases are proposed as part of the new fiscal year budget which would begin October 1, 2003. A public hearing on the budget and an expected vote on the budget are scheduled for September 9, 2003, at 1:30 p.m. at the Commissioners' Courtroom of the Hays County Courthouse. ELECTED OFFICIALS PROPOSED ANNUAL FY 2004 FY 2003 INCREASE Treasurer 53,901 52,844 1,057 Longevity 1,055 995 60 Tax Assessor 57,285 56,162 1,123 Longevity 515 455 60 District Clerk 53,791 52,736 1,055 Longevity 440 380 60 County Clerk 53,791 52,736 1,055 Longevity 0 240 240 Sheriff 76,800 75,294 1,506 Longevity 935 875 60 County Judge 64,497 63,232 1,265 Longevity 0 240 240 Justice of the Peace 1-1 45,633 44,738 895 Longevity 855 795 60 Justice of the Peace 1-2 45,633 44,738 895 Justice of the Peace 2 45,633 44,738 895 Longevity 0 240 240 Justice of the Peace 3 45,633 44,738 895 Longevity 0 240 240 Justice of the Peace 4 45,633 44,738 895 Longevity ,, 480 420 60 Justice of the Peace 5 45,633 44,738 895 Longevity 480 420 50 Constable Pct. 1 40,000 38,745 1,255 Longevity , 1,200 1,162 38 Constable Pet.2 40,000 38,745 1,255 Longevity 1,200 11188 12 Constable Pct. 3 40,000 38,745 1,255 Longevity 290 200 90 Constable Pet. 4 40,000 38,745 1,255 Longevity 540 480 60 Constable Pct.5 40,000 38,745 1,255 Longevity 1,200 1,170 30 Commissioner Pet. 1 51,945 50,926 1,019 Longevity 635 575 60 Commissioner Pct. 2 51,945 50,926 1,019 Longevity .0 240 240 Commissioner, Pct 3 51,945 50,926 1,019 Longevity 360 300 60 Commissioner, Pct 4 51,945 50,926 1,019 Longevity 660 600 60 Telephone Allowance 480 0 480 NOTICE OF PUBLIC HEARING ON HAYS COUNTY FY 2004 BUDGET Notice is hereby given that the County of Hays will hold a public hearing on the proposed FY 2004 budget on September 9, 2003, at 1:30 pro., in the Commissioners' Courtroom, Hays County Courthouse. Prior to the adoption and thereafter, a copy of the budget will be on file in the offices of the Hays County Clerk and the Hays County Auditor for public inspection.