News

Mon
08
Dec

Robot ready for use by MFHS CTE program

By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

All that stands between Marble Falls High School engineering students and learning how to operate a high-tech FANUC robot is Christmas break and the teacher’s online certification exam.

Randy Guffey, aerospace engineering teacher, completed his on-site training at Tech-Labs. Now he just lacks a few online courses followed by an online exam, he said Thursday, Dec. 4. “Once I’m certified, I’ll be able to certify students,” Guffey explained, adding that he’ll take the exam within the next few weeks.

The training was “challenging but well-done,” he said. “They want you to go away from training with the skills to get started and go from there.”

Every student in Guffey’s aerospace engineering class was excited about getting their paws on the FANUC controls in January.

Mon
08
Dec

Lakeside mayors entangled with invasive weed issue

By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

The leadership of several lakeside communities are in the process of drafting proposals to take advantage of the Lower Colorado River Authority's $50,000 matching-grant offer to help battle invasive water weeds.

Multiple cities are working in advance of a Jan. 15 submission deadline, seeking help from the LCRA to control Milfoil and other lake weeds once the early summer months arrive.

A “problem”?

The extent of the “problem” posed by invasive water weeds is a matter of perspective, depending upon who's talking.

There’s no question that water weeds present access problems for boats, and can tear up a boat motor irreparably, said Marble Falls Mayor George Russell, who added he also gets complaints from residents about not being able to swim in the lake.

Mon
08
Dec

CVS eyeing Marble Falls move

by Alexandria Randolph

City officials and a development firm are looking forward tentatively to the construction of a CVS Pharmacy at the corner of US 281 and Gateway North Drive (across from Starbucks.) Meanwhile, the plan is pending approval by Gateway Park Property Owners Association (POA.)

Marble Falls City Manager Mike Hodge said a developer has already approached the city and POA with plans for the building.

“They’ve presented us with a preliminary site plan for discussion purposes only,” he said. “We’ve discussed the issues related to traffic.”

Hodge said the city has already approved the right of way for the development, but the developer has not begun the formal approval process for the building since it is awaiting approval from the Gateway Park POA, he said.

For the full story, see Tuesday's Highlander.

Mon
08
Dec

Spicewood Volunteer hospitalized following wreck

Alexandria Randolph/The Highlander

A wreck on TX 71 on Friday, Nov. 5 left a Spicewood Volunteer Firefighter hospitalized and another individual on the run.

by Alexandria Randolph

Spicewood Volunteer Fire Department is collection donations after a rear-end collision on TX 71 on Friday, Dec. 5, left one of its volunteer firefighters hospitalized, and another individual on the run from authorities.

The wreck, which took place at about 6:30 p.m., occurred when a black Ford F250 struck a white Ford Sport Track from behind while both were headed west in the inside lane on TX 71 just east of the CR 406 intersection, said Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) troopers on the scene.

 Spicewood volunteer fireman Craig Schlicke, the driver of the vehicle that was struck from behind, was transported by Marble Falls Area EMS to the University Medical Center Brackenridge in Austin with “serious” injuries, officials said.

“He hit him (Schlicke) with enough force to push him off the roadway,” said DPS Trooper Mark Chambers. “The driver of the black vehicle fled on foot.”

Mon
01
Dec

Highland Lakes shoppers seek good deals at stores big and small

By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

 

It’s clear Black Friday has arrived when the sound of wallets creaking open mingles with a few impatient toes tapping as folks wait in line, arms full of good-deal Christmas presents. 

However, local shoppers were part of a nationwide trend in which more people delayed Thanksgiving dinner, shopping instead. 

Highland Lakes shoppers joined the more than 134 million holiday bargain-hunters over Thanksgiving weekend, although that is a decrease from last year.

Wed
26
Nov

Marble Falls PD addresses kidnapping rumors

by Alexandria Randolph

Marble Falls Police are urging residents of a local apartment complex to remain calm after conflicting stories were spread about an assault that occurred earlier this week.

Police said while they are investigating an assault that took place at the complex, rumors of a kidnapping in an apartment community in the 700 block of Mustang Drive are not completely accurate.

“On Monday, we received a report of an assault. Today managers put out flyers warning their residents about a kidnapping," said Marble Falls Capt. Glenn Hanson, and added that police have no evidence that a kidnapping took place.

Hanson said police feel the assault was an isolated incident, but at this time are unable to release any information about the case.

“We are investigating a report of a felonious assault. There is no indication there should be any alarm in that community,” Hanson said. “We don’t believe there is anything they should be worried about.”

Tue
25
Nov

HSB deer trapping on hold for Thanksgiving holiday

By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

Already more than 450 deer have been trapped in Horseshoe Bay, with more scheduled to be removed after the Thanksgiving holidays, officials said.

So far, 454 deer have been trapped and removed, said city manager Stan Farmer on Monday, Nov. 24. Trapping will pick back up again Dec. 5-17.

Cherokee Capturing Service, out of Dripping Springs, has been trapping Horseshoe Bay’s deer for at least eight years, said owner James Bonds.

Two crews have been working in the city since early October.

“The goal is not to eliminate the deer population, but to manage it based on Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s recommendations,” he said, adding that his company has no say on the number of deer caught and removed. Limits are set by TPWD surveys.

The TPWD biologists who survey deer populations and determine acceptable, healthy populations for a given area “are some of the best around,” Bonds said.

Tue
25
Nov

Tree of Angels shines on

By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

This year's Tree of Angels event Saturday, Dec. 6, marks the 17th anniversary of the program in the 33rd and 424th judicial districts. 

Tree of Angels is now a worldwide tradition that gives families of victims of violence “love, compassion and support,” said co-executive director Cindy Westbrook.

For victims, survivors, families and communities the dedication and lighting ceremony is a time to honor their loved one by placing an Angel ornament on the tree. People then return and visit the tree during the holiday season.

After the ceremony, the Tree of Angels will be left on display in the foyer of Marble Falls City Hall.  

Tue
25
Nov

Mission Marble Falls uses all resources possible to serve Highland Lakes needy

By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

Serving the region’s hungry can be a daunting task, especially in the midst of the holiday season. That’s exactly why organizations like Mission Marble Falls have learned to make use of all resources, much like the folks they help.

Mission Marble Falls is one of many charitable organizations in the Highland Lakes that help the needy. The abundant deer population in the region, especially in Horseshoe Bay, also has led to a boon for people served.

Every year hundreds of deer are trapped and removed from the city in an effort to control its deer herd. The deer are slaughtered and packaged at Trinity Oaks, a 501(c)(3) organization in San Antonio that then distributes the venison burger to other nonprofits in the Austin and San Antonio regions. 

The lunches on every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at Mission Marble Falls often include venison, as steak and in spaghetti and meatloaf, just to start with.

Tue
25
Nov

Pain patients, practices, affected by DEA law change

By Emily Hilley-Sierzchula

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s strengthening of regulations last month for certain narcotic painkillers has made lives difficult for pain patients, practices and pharmacies in the region.

Hydrocodone combination products (HCPs), painkillers that combine the opioid with acetaminophen (such as Vicodin), have been listed as Schedule III controlled substances for more than 40 years, since the 5-tiered drug classification system originated with the 1971 Controlled Substances Act..

On Oct. 6, the classification was stiffened to a more restrictive Schedule II substance, a reaction on the federal level triggered by the rise in addiction and overdose from unlawful use of pharmaceutical drugs.

The Texas Medical Association (TMA) and the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) were among the professional organizations that lobbied against the change.

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