The San Marcos City Council approved a resolution created to enrich the adolescent community during their Aug. 21 meeting.
Several San Marcos High School students attended to push for the approval of the Youth Master Plan, a citywide initiative aimed toward building an educational environment for local adolescents. The plan focuses on strengthening the youth of San Marcos’ education and health, along with family and community relationships.
According to an April 17 University Star article, the plan aims to keep adolescents occupied with “out of school time” opportunities and keep them away from potential dangers.
High school student Jenny McGinty said students have formed six subcommittees for the plan. She attended the meeting with hopes of persuading the council to approve the resolution.
The Texas State University System is the state’s third major university system to offer a bachelor’s degree costing $10,000 in an effort to make higher education more affordable for students.
In response to Governor Rick Perry’s challenge to create affordable bachelor’s degrees,will be the first institution within the system to offer three bachelor’s degrees costing $10,000.
Mike Wintemute, spokesman for the Texas State University System, said Sul Ross State University Rio Grande College is the first institution to offer the “10K Scholars Program” because it has the most affordable tuition and fees in the system. Biology, chemistry and mathematics, the degrees offered within the program, are not new or different to the school, but will be obtainable at a more affordable price tag, he said.
Texas State has paid the price for failing to follow proper protocol after installing new boilers.
Two failed boilers left a portion of the university without hot water for a week in the spring of 2009. They were replaced, but before new boilers are installed and operational, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality requires the university to perform pre-tests and report them to the TCEQ — something Texas State failed to do.
Consequentially, the TCEQ fined Texas State $17,150 in air quality violations, which include “failure to conduct initial compliance testing after the boilers were installed and failure to notify the TCEQ before the boilers were operating,” according to the case document.
Juan Guerra, associate vice president of facilities, said the TCEQ noticed these violations in the summer of 2011 during a routine inspection of the Cogeneration Power and Chiller Plant, located near Matthews Street Parking Garage.
San Marcos area resident Pete Thompson is facing a new and unfamiliar issue for the first time since he was 15 years old: being unemployed.
Thompson is now on his way to finding a place in the job market after hundreds of applications and dozens of job interviews. His progress is thanks to the guidance of non-traditional resources, including Texas State’s Small Business Development Center, PeopleFund and Kickstarter.
Thompson will soon open his own business: the Hungry Gamer, a cafe offering deli-style sandwiches and video game entertainment.
It is the calm before the Dec. 6 storm and Wayne Becak, newly elected San Marcos city councilmember for the Place 4 seat, is preparing for the start of his term.
Becak ran against incumbent Chris Jones during the Nov. 8 city council elections, and won with 54.07 percent of the overall votes. He will attend his first San Marcos City Council meeting Dec. 6. Becak, who was sworn in by his friend Patty Sullivan on Nov. 16, talks about his goals for the year and the rest of his term as Place 4 councilmember.
KZ: How is the transition to being a councilmember going?
WB: The problem with that is that we haven’t had an official meeting yet. The first meeting where I am actually going to be involved with council city business will be on the sixth of December.
KZ: Now that you are elected, what will you focus on during your term?
A new San Marcos neighborhood, the Paso Robles development, is expected to add 3,400 homes and generate $900 million of property taxes over the next 10 years.
Steve Parker, director of Finance for San Marcos, said the gated community would contain homes ranging in price from $250,000 to $400,000. It will include a golf course, clubhouse, parks and walking trails, and is expected to bring in $900 million of new property taxes to the city — one-third of the total in San Marcos.
Forty percent of that revenue will be set aside to reimburse the developer, Brookfield Residential. However, the exact dollar amount of the reimbursement is dependent on the fluctuation of the property value over the next 10 years.
On Tuesday night, the San Marcos City Council approved reimbursing Brookfield Residential, the developer of Paso Robles, up to $20 million. The City will have 30 years to reimburse Brookfield residential.
Despite recent rain, a Texas climatologist is saying Texas will need many more showers to get out of the worst drought in state history.
John Nielsen-Gammon anticipates Texas will be in some sort of drought-stage for the next two years as a repercussion of the record-high temperatures this past summer.
According to a drought map from University College London, as of last week 70 percent of Texas is categorized as being in an exceptional drought — the worst classification on the map.
Nielsen-Gammon said Texas set the record in the state for the driest amount of rainfall in the last year.
According to The Weather Channel, San Marcos has received approximately 0.02 inches of rainfall in the month of October. The average is 3.05 inches.
Rainfall soaks into the ground and helps to recharge the aquifer and stream flow during the winter because the temperature drops, Nielsen-Gammon said. He said the recent rainfall will help increase water levels.
The process of approving the financing of Paso Robles development continued at Tuesday night’s San Marcos City Council meeting.
Pasa Robles is a residential development off Hunter and Centerpoint Roads. The development would provide 3,300 homes over 1,339 acres.
Steve Parker, director of Finance for the city, presented the council with various financial reports pertaining to the development.
The council voted to reimburse developers, Carma, up to $20 million in infrastructure costs over the next 30 years. According to the resolution, the majority of the costs are already included in the city’s long-term plan for development.
Hays County and the developer agreed 40 percent of the property taxes generated by the development would go back to Carma, and the City of San Marcos would keep the remaining 60 percent.
Parker said the city’s 60 percent is approximately $2.6 million in new property taxes for the City of San Marcos.
Vodka Street’s tin ceiling shimmered above Wayne Becak and Mackenzie Shriner, his campaign manager, as they both simultaneously received text messages congratulating Becak’s win.
Tuesday night Becak defeated current Councilmember Chris Jones by 172 votes in the San Marcos City Council Place 4 election. Becak received 1,142 votes, making up 54.07 percent of the votes, while Chris Jones received 970 votes accounting for 45.93 percent.
“I can now sleep better at night,” Becak said. “Now that I am elected, I am anxious to go back to work.”