The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, April 13, 1976, Image 1

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    City referendum violations
insufficient to void election
College Station, Texas
Tuesday, April 13, 1976
Bike trap
Photo by Steve Goble
Campus policeman Jim Carpenter tickets Mike Garnett Monday
afternoon in front of the Reed McDonald Building. Officers were
ticketing bike riders with unregistered bikes. Those ticketed
must buy a $1.50 registration sticker from University police, even
though the registration period is nearly over. Carpenter said the
crackdown would encourage bicyclists to obey regulations.
onflict of interest cited
Contributing Editor
A committee, appointed by College Sta
tion Mayor Larry Bravenec last Monday,
has apparently abandoned its effort to seek
out further irregularities in the April 3 city
charter referendum.
Bravenec appointed the committee to
investigate complaints concerning the
manner in which the referendum was pre
sented on the ballot. Voters approved a
change to a ward system of election by only
29 votes.
Councilmen Gary Halter, James Dozier
and Jim Gardner, the members of the
committee, told the council last Thursday
that the referendum contained several
violations of the Texas Election Code: (1)
three of the election clerks for Precinct 20
(Texas A&M University center) were not
registered voters as required by the code,
(2) choices on the proposition were labeled
“For” and “Against,” instead of the re
quired “Yes” and “No,” (3) the ballot con
tained two proposed changes, the ward sys
tem and election of city officials by plurality
vote (state law says only one change may be
A&M trip
Jack Ford will not be on the A&M cam
pus this week as previously announced in
The Battalion.
The President’s son will campaign on the
A&M campus sometime around April 28,
two days before his father faces Ronald Re
agan in the Texas Republican primary.
Coordinators of the local campaign for
Ford will not know the actual time of
Ford’s appearance for another three days.
included in a proposition.) City officials,
however, have said none of the ir
regularities are serious enough to void the
“There’s really not much more we can
do,” Halter admitted last night.
Councilman Gardner said the commit
tee, which spent several days studying al
leged irregularities in the wording of the
ballot at each of the city’s six voting pre
cincts, could not detect any additional
violations within the ballot. The ballot was
presented to voters in the form of a city
Gardner said the next step will be for the
city to begin holding public hearings on the
determination of the ward boundaries, one
for each councilman.
“I think the students, particularly,
should get together with the council and
discuss where the wards will be desig
nated,” he said. “We need to know how the
students feel about this.”
City Attorney Neeley Lewis said the city
soon will submit the ward system proposal
to the U.S. Dept, of Justice for its approval
as required by federal law. Next April
Ecofair ’76 is in its second day of a
week-long symposium discussing
modern architecture. Page 3.
e Aggie Players’ production.
Celebration,” was found to be
worth seeing despite acting flaws.
Page 3.
The circus was in town over the
weekend, complete with ele
phants, a parade and happy chil
dren. Page 5.
■ Regent asks issue be revoted
^ By Lee Roy Leschper
^ K; Battalion Staff Writer
■ ncliard A. Goodson, a member of the
■ H A&M University System Board of
I gents, has asked the board to reconsider
^/jOice vote taken at their March 23 meet-
r* *<*l\. Under that vote Goodson violated a
|te conflict of interest law.
■idson, of Dallas, voted during the
meeting on an addition to an insur-
^Ppolicy for dependents of university
»>»•■& ployees. Goodson is a director of
ithwestern Life Corporation, which
itrols the insurance company holding
t policy.
Hording to state law, Goodson should
'e announced during the board meeting
t he has business interests in Soutb-
stern Life. He then should have disqual-
ified himself from voting on the policy, the
law requires.
When questioned by the Battalion,
Goodson said he didn’t know about the law.
“I presume I did vote on that matter (the
insurance policy), ” he said. “It came up as a
routine matter.
University President Jack K. Williams
said, “He (Goodson) asked that I not take
any action on it (the insurance policy) for
now.” The board vote had authorized
Williams to contract the policy addition
with Southwestern Life.
Goodson will explain his connection with
Southwestern Life and disqualify himself
from voting on the policy in the board’s
next meeting May 25, Williams said.
Williams said the administration had to
accept blame for Goodson’s voting on the
“It was our responsibility to tell him
about the law,” Williams said. “We should
have made it clear to him that he should
disqualify himself and not vote.”
The conflict of interest law. Article
6252-9b of the Texas Statutes, requires that
state officers such as regents file an affidavit
with the Secretary of State for any state-
regulated business in which they have an
Goodson filed such an affidavit for
Southwestern Life, which is regulated by
the Texas Insurance Commission, with the
Secretary of State March 22, 1974.
The policy approved by the board was an
addition to an employe policy A&M has
had with Southwestern Life for many
years, not a new policy, Williams said.
Ray Smith, university director of per
sonnel, said that A&M has had five insur
ance policies with Southwestern Life for
some time. Goodson was appointed to the
board by Governor Dolph Briscoe in
January, 1973.
Smith said the policy addition was rec
ommended originally by the A&M Systems
Personnel Committee. That committee is
made up of personnel representatives from
all divisions of the system.
“The committee determined what insur
ance to offer, then the mechanics (in or
ganizing the policy) were done in the per
sonnel office and the board approved it,”
Smith said.
Williams said the policy addition will not
be delayed if the board reconsiders it. The
addition was slated to go into effect for the
new fiscal year beginning this September.
“With or without Mr. Goodson’s vote
the board would have approved the pol
icy,” Williams said. The 9-member board
approved the policy unanimously.
While no charges are expected to be
filed, a regent can be removed for violating
the state conflict of interest law. In serious
cases, the state attorney general would file
a petition against a regent; a district court
must then find him guilty before he can be
removed from office.
in w' 01
Longest hot dog
too long to eat
Photo by Ce Cowart
Four Aggies created the world’s longest hot dog
One hundred people ate their fill, but
still there was 20 feet of hot dog left.
The record for the longest hot dog in the
world was set Saturday at Thomas Park in
College Station, but the crowd that
gathered could not eat it all.
Four Aggies produced a 181-foot long,
two-inch round hot dog, breaking the old
Guinness World Record of 95 feet.
Jimmy Nichols, a senior in the A&M
animal science department conceived the
idea more than three months ago. He en
listed the help of Bill Marshall and Rees
Harward, two graduate students in meat
science at A&M. They went to John
Slovacek of Snook and got permission to
use his sausage-making facilities to produce
the giant wiener.
The team used about 50 pounds of
ground pork, beef and seasoning. A casing
containing the sausage was non-edible but
strong. It was a livid red color looking much
like a crimson garden hose.
They solved the problem of how to keep
the sausage together and cook it by invent
ing the “frank wheel.” The wheel is a
wooden barrel-like cylinder supported by
two posts allowing the long wiener to be
wound around. The sausage was smoke-
cooked on the device until the meat
reached an interior temperature of 175 de
grees, signalling that it was done.
places 1, 3 and 5 will be up for election on
the council.
Lewis said courts generally have been
ruling in favor of the ward system where
legality of the ward or at-large systems of
election has been challenged, usually by
minority groups.
Lewis cited a recent court case in which a
Tyler judge ruled that the city of Paris,
Texas had to switch to a ward system to
insure adequate representation for that
city’s minority population.
“The at-large system dilutes the minor
ity vote. That’s pretty obvious,” he said. “I
can see nothing but benefits for the
minorities here in College Station. ”
However, several councilmen have
criticized the ward system on grounds that
it would effectively destroy minority repre
sentation. Most minority members are
scattered any one area.
Halter said there has been talk among
several blacks in the community that the
ward system may be challenged in federal
court under the federal Voting Rights Act
which was revised recently to include
Texas. He said some minority members say
they feel the new system will not effec
tively represent minorities in the city as it
is intended to do.
Lewis said much of the controversy
about the wording of the charter ballot
came after the referendum narrowly
passed, much to the surprise of most coun
cil members.
“There had earlier been some question
about the way the ballot was to have been
presented to the voters,” Lewis said.
At least one change had been made in
the ballot during the first day of absentee
voting when city officials told the firm that
tabulated election results to change the
charter ballot from a short form to one in
the form of a city ordinance.
Lewis said the revised ballot was based
primarily on the recommendations of the
council s Charter Revision Committee.
The recommendations were then passed
on to the council for its approval.
M. L. Cashion, chairman of the revision
committee, said he wasn’t exactly sure who
wrote the final form of the ordinance as it
appeared on the ballot.
The Battalion last week conducted a sur
vey in which two dozen persons, including
two former College Station mayors, indi
cated they had voted erroneously because
they were confused about the wording of
the ballot.
“We prepared the (revision) material but
I really didn’t look at the ballot when I was
voting because I was already familiar with
the issue,” Cashion said. “I knew what for’
and ‘against’ meant.
Senate refuses to cut
’77 defense spending
Associated Press
WASHINGTON — The Senate refused
Monday to Cut the fiscal 1977 spending
target for defense or to allow substantial
increases for domestic programs. The
Senators approved a $412.6-billion federal
spending ceiling.
The hold-the-1 ine amendment votes
preceded final passage of the overall spend
ing ceiling for the year beginning Oct. 1.
The spending plan, which also must pass
the House and is subject to adjustment
later in the year, compares with the lower
$395.2-billion proposed by President
The budget resolution, proposed by the
Senate Budget Committee and okayed 62
to 22, allows for a fiscal 1977 deficit of $50.2
billion, compared with the administration’s
$44.6-billion deficit proposal.
Tire legislation now goes to the House
where the House Budget Committee has
recommended a higher $413.6-billion ceil
ing which would produce a $50.6-billion
Quickly, the Senate rejected an amend
ment cutting outlays for defense by $500-
million from the $100.9-billion recom
mended by the Senate Budget Committee.
The President proposed a $101.1-billion
defense budget. Sen. Birch Bayh, D-Ind.,
proposed the amendment which lost 58 to
Also failing 58 to 27 was a $3.2-billion
additional for public service jobs, nutrition
and unemployment programs for the el
derly; road, water and sewer develop
ments; Medicare-Medicaid, and commu
nity development programs. Sen. Edward
Kennedy, D-Mass., proposed the amend
The Senate voted 62-23 not to reduce
spending targets by $6.8-billion for energy,
transportation and social programs. Sen.
James Buckley, Con-R.-N.Y., sponsored
the bill.
Chairman Edmund Muskie, D-Maine,
of the Budget Committee, opposed all
increases, saying the budget resolutions
were in 17 general categories and not in
specific programs.
Muskie reminded senators they can ad
just the figures in the final congressional
budget resolution in September, after they
have acted on the regular authorization and
appropriation bills dealing with specific
With the wiener ready, a 181 foot, two
inch bun had to be prepared.
The fertile Aggie minds once again went
to work. They called upon Drew Woods,
Incorporated of Bryan to help them design
the oven.
The team found designing an oven ten
feet long and a bread pan 181 feet long
would work. They only had to move the
pan when sections of the bread were done.
The head bread maker, Cecelia Coones,
a French major at A&M and the president
of Alpha Delta Pi sorority, held rehearsals
Friday night to determine that the contrap
tion and techniques would work.
All day Saturday, starting at 7 a.m., her
crew of helpers kept joining loaf after loaf
until they had mixed, kneaded and baked a
bun longer than anyone else ever has.
The completed loaf, sitting in its bright
metallic pan, was sliced down the top mid
dle, with the wiener laid into place and
topped with mustard. The Aggies had bro
ken the record.
The super hot dog was notarized and its
dimensions are being sent to the New York
office of the Guinness Book of World Rec
The estimated cost of the hot dog is $400,
not including labor costs.
Rees Harward said next year he hopes to
shatter this record, by creating a hot dog
over 300 feet long.
photo by Douglas Winship
Aggie Players presents its big musical production for the year,
“Celebration!” The play, centering around the struggle between
innocent youth and jaded age, appears in the Rudder Theatre
through April 18. See review, page 3.