News Brief
5:16 am
Tue December 14, 2010

Top Morning Stories December 14, 2010

AISD Changes Class Rank Calculation

Last night the Austin School Board approved changes to the way class rank is determined.  Class rank will now be calculated using a student's highest grades in 16 core classes such as math and science, plus two foreign languages.  That means electives such as home economics will no longer count for class rank. The

This is important because students in the top ten percent of their high school graduating class are guaranteed admission to any state college or university, except UT Austin.  The University will now require students to be in the top 8 percent.  The new policy takes effect starting with freshmen in the 2011-2012 school year. 

Former PEC Executive Sentenced

The former manager of the Pedernales Electric Cooperative has been sentenced to probation and a $30,000 fine.  A Gillespie County jury issued the sentence yesterday.  Bennie Fuelberg was convicted Friday of third degree theft, misapplication of fiduciary property and money laundering.  The Austin American Statesman has been following the case:

Sighs of relief came from members of Bennie Fuelberg's family when Mills [District Judge Dan Mills ] read his sentence.

"We are disappointed with the guilty verdict, but obviously pleased with the sentence," defense attorney Chris Gunter said. The defense asked for probation on the basis that Fuelberg had never been convicted of a crime until Friday.

"Bennie Fuelberg is not Bernie Madoff," defense attorney Charles Grigson told the jury. "Hundreds and thousands of people have not lost their life savings because of his actions." 

 

 Fuelberg could have been sentenced to years in prison.

Meet Candidate for Top Animal Services Job

Meet the last of five candidates for the City of Austin's Chief Animal Services Officer position.  The city's interviewing Abigail Smith today.  She was unavailable last month when the other finalists were interviewed, because of a family emergency.  Smith is the executive director of the Tompkins County SPCA in Ithaca, N.Y. 

A public meet and greet will be held from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Palmer Events Center.  Whoever gets the job will have plenty on their plate.  The city's animal shelter is getting ready to transition to a new home and Austin's trying to reach new "No Kill" goals, to reduce the number of euthanizations.