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Marshall's Budget Is A Joke
But We Aren 't Laughing
When it was first approved la^t mopth, we
suspected that Marshall's lS64-|rf>udget was a
meaningless document. The town aldermen's
actions in the past week have erased our susp
cions. We are now convinced thafr^he 'budget' is
a joke. )
Less than a week after the budget went into
effect, the aldermen have busted the budget by
approving several expendi tires requested by
With the budget is effect just two days, the
aldermen approved paying for health insurance
for town employees at an annual cost to Mar
shall taxpayers of $4,043.52. If the money to pay
for this benefit for town workers was included
in the budget, we haven't been able to find it.
Three days later, the aldermen approved a
contract to put the town's water, sewer and tax
billing on computers at an annual cost of $3,300.
When computerizing the town's billing was first
proposed, it was pointed out that the cost of the
computer service Would be less than the salary
for a part-time secretarial position. The
aldermen last week approved the computer
contract and then hired the part-time secretary
we were told wouldn't be needed.
After approving the computer contract, the
wM 9H V ~ 5s ' ? I H 1 1 1
aldermen also voted to hire an additional police
officer to act as plice chief at an annual cost of
$9,200 per year. According to the figures on the
police department budget released to the press
by Mayor Wild, there are not enough funds
budgetted to pay the police chief's salary.
We do not wish to take issue with the projects
the aldermen funded last week. Town
employees probably deserve adequate health
insurance coverage. Computerizing the town's
billing system is probably long overdue and the
need for a police chief has been apparent for
While all three of these items may be needed,
it is also fair for Marshall taxpayers to ask
where the money to pay for computers, in
surance and an additional policeman will come
We asked the mayor last week and were told,
"You let me worry about the budget and I'll
take care of it."
That's the sort of answer we've come to ex
pect from Town Hall, but we find it totally in
adequate. We hope that the Marshall taxpayers
who will ultimately pay the bill for these items
will also find it an inadequate response.
Wanted: Equal Employ ment
Opportunity For All
Marshall's aldermen approved the hiring of a
new chief of police last week. Announcement of
the hiring must have come as a surprise to a
great many people because the town never
advertised the fact that it was looking for a new
chief. The hiring was such a well-kept secret
that the town received only a single applica
While we do not wish to take issue with either
the new chief's qualificiations or the board's
decision to hire Mr. Cox, we are opposed to the
manner in which he was hired. We believe that
it is time that our local goyernment bodies
advertise job vacancies to that the public is
made aware that employment within govern
ment agencies is available.
Marshall is only the latest offender. The same
hiring practises are also used by the towns of
Mars Hill and Hot Springs, the Madison County
Board of Education, Transportation Authority,.
Department of Social Services and other bran
ches of county government.
All too often, positions with town and county
government are filled by the traditional "good
ol' boy" hiring practises that have dominated
Madison County for all too long.
The people of Madison County depend upon
government at the local level to provide many
essential services. They have a right to have
those services provided by the very best people
available. The patronage system by which so
many positions are filled shortchanges the
public by excluding a great many possible job
Mr. Cox is probably amply qualified to lead
Marshall's police department and we wish him
success in returning order to Main Street after
dark, but it is fair to ask how many other
qualified applicants - the town might have
chosen from had the position been advertised.
An informal readers' poll last year indicated
that 85 percent of our readers regularly check
the classifieds. How many of you have noted
jobs in county or town government advertised?
It is time for Madison County officials on all
levels to hire the best people available and put
the 'good ol' boy' system to rest.
Windsor's Reporting Is
A Disgrace To Journalism
National attention is being focused on the
race for North Carolina's seat in the UJ5.
Senate, in part because the campaign battle
between Sen. Helms and Gov. Hunt promises to
be the most expensive such campaign in
history. Unfortunately, it may also become,
the dirtiest campaign in history
Last week, the mudslinging between the two
camps took an ugly turn when an Orange Coun
ty newspaper published an unfounded report
that Gov. Jim Hunt kept both a girlfriend and a
homosexual lover while in office.
This ugly rumor was quickly denied and the
offending newspaper's editor has apologized
S ?rvlnf The Peop/e CX Modnoo County Sine* 190'
P.O. Box 369 ? Marshall. N.C. 28753
' .5/ , '
and promised a front page retraction. However,
the apology and retraction may prove to be too
late to avoid legal action.
Election campaigns take their toll in long
hours for reporters covering the campaigns. In
defending his decision to publish the rumors,
the newspaper's editor, Bob Windsor, pled that
he was tired from working 72 hours without rest
at the time the story was written.
Lack of sleep is no excuse for violating the
public trust and tarnishing the confidence of
North Carolinians in their newspapers. The ar
ticle linking Hunt with homosexuals has no
place in journalism and we are offended and
saddened that the story reached the light of
Mr. Windsor has prided himself on being a
renegade in journalistic cirdes. With this inci
dent, Windsor has transformed himself from a
renegade to a pariah.
Heard And Seen
By POP STORY
TWO BRIGHT SPOTS ON MAIN STREET
Marshall can be proud of many attractive
places along Main Street, bbut there are two
businesses which deserve special praise. Not
only for their window displays, but also for their
contents and flower arrangements.
I refer to the Shady Side and Sunshine
Florists. Shady Side is across the street from
the First Baptist Church and Sunshine is next to
the church. I doubt that there are two flower
shops more attractive in North Carolina than
the two located on Main Street in Marshall. I
congratulate the owners for the timely and at
tractive window displays.
RODEO, FIREWORKS SUCCESSFUL
The annual rodeo sponsored by trhe Marshall
Volunteer Fire Department over July 4 was
again successful although the weather didn't
completely cooperate. Although rain fell on
Wednesday night ;s performance, the large
crowd stayed through the show. Following the
rodeo, a lengthy display of colorful fireworks
thrilled the hundreds of spectators. 'Bill' and I
are fortunate to live where we can enjoy the
fireworks from our porch. Robbie Penland, our
neighbor, came by and watched the display
Congratulations to the firemen who span
sored the annual event.
NEW INDUSTRY NEAR WEAVERVILLE
For several weeks, I have wondered what
was being built on the lare site at the intersec
tion of U.S. 25-70 in WeaverviUe. Curiosity got
the best of me, so I stopped last week and asked
some of the workmen what the future building
was going to be.
I learned that the building is the new RCA
plant. When completed, the plant will manufac
ture cassette tapes and employ 300 people.
Wendell Phillips was traveling through Ohio
once when he fell in with a carload of ministers.
A Southerner from Kentucky was not very cor
dial to the opinions of the great abolitionist and
set out to embarass Mr. Phillips.
The Kentuckian asked Mr. Phillips, "You are
Wendell Phillips, are you not?"
"Yes." answered the abolitionist.
"You're trying to free the slaves, aren't
"Yes, sir, I am." Phillips replied.
"Well, why do you preach your doctrines ip
here? Why don't you go over into Kentucky?"
the man asked.
Phillips replied, "Excuse me, sir, but aren't
you also a preacher?"
"I am, sir." came the reply.
"Are you trying to save souls from Hell?"
"Yes, sir, that is my business." the man
"Well, why don't you go there then?" Phillips
replied. -Submitted by Everette Barnett
By JOSEPH GODWIN
r % ?< , ? ? '4? . * * ? ? . c-m / .
Due to technical difficulties , we are unabl ? to present Dr. Godwin 's
column this week. * Know Comment' will return next week.
T ? ? A 1 ^
Living And Growing
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