The Brunswick beacon. (Shallotte, N.C.) 19??-current, January 29, 1987, Image 1
Appeals Court Upholds Beacon In Copyright Infringement Case BY ftlARJOKIE MEGIVEKN In a precedent-setting Jan. 23 ruling, the U.S. Fourth Dbtrict Court of Appeals upheld in its entirety the dec!- alwi of lower courts in finding 'rhe Brunswick Beacon should be awarded a pennanent injunction aixl daniages in its 1984 copyright infringement suit against The Free Press. Beacon attorney W. Thad Adams III of Charlotte was informed Tuesday of the decision by the Fourth District Clerk of Court in Riclunond, Va. After hearing an Associated Press radio report o( the ruling, Adams was told his copy of the order had been delayed in the niaiis, due to weekend snowstorms. The .suit was filed in U.S. District Court in Wilm ington in April 1984. citing three specific infringements of the copyright law in 1983. The Free Press, another Shallotte newspaper, was charged with copying ads pro duced by The Brunswick Beacon and publishing them in the Free Press after having been notified to dLscontinue the illegAl practice. In June 1985, in UJ>. District Court in Wilmington, the Beacon was awarded damages of $6,000, plus "reasonable attorney's fees." However, the appeals court granted a stay of execution of Uic civil judgement against the Free Press pending a decision in the case. An order signed by Judge Earl W. Britt four,d the Free Press guilty of copying the three ads and the newspaper was permanently enjoined from publishing further copyrighted material from the Beacon. Britt liad upheld the earlier findings of federal Magistrate Charles K. McCottcr Jr., who first Iward oral arguments In the case on Aug. 30,1984. The Free Press is owned and published by Bernard Cliarles (Rocky) and Priscilla (Lou) Hopchas and Mrs. Hopchas's mother, Caroline Schock. The Free Press had appealed aU findings of ihe lower court to the U.S. Court of Appeals, with the publishers malnlalning they have a right to copy ads from the Beacon since, in their opinion, the ads arc owned by the advertisers who place them. They contended the Beacon’s use of the copyright notice consUtule.s a restraint of trade and that the paper has no right to copyright its work- The Beacon had appealed only the lower court’s release of Mrs. Schock from personal liability in the case. The Beacon’s suit was based on the Copyright Act of i97G, which went into effect Jsn.!, 1978 th* r»yic«iA law, ownership of advertising created by a newspaper can be protected by copyright TTw case has set a legal precedent, in that no newspaper lias been previously found guilty of copyright violations. A similar case in i-ouiriena m nisa nuuiUni in a lower court decision for the plaintiff being reversed by the Court of Appeals, because uf inadequate notification of copyright Eddie Sweatt, ov/ner and publisher of the Beacon with his wife, Carolyn, was jubilant over last week's rul ing. “It can only be reviewed now by Uic U.S. Supreme Court" he said. Raleigh Attorney l,urry Coaus, who represents TTie Brunswick Free Press, was in Jamaica and could not be n*»riio(l for a conunent. Tt ir springpuRT Twenty-fifth Year, Number 12 DCHtUI\ r>l«ir IKI tmjNSWICX HACON Sholloiie, Norin ^aroiina. Thursday, January 29, Iw/ 25c Per Copy 26 Pages Plus Insert /* ON HOLDEN BEACH CAUSEWAY Upposition to Annexation Continues To Gather Steam Commissioners Tour Campus siArr PHOioBr SUSAN usHta Brunswick Technical College trustees hosted coun^ commissioners on a campus tour Monday, followed by a steak dinner and slide show at the Sizzling Slrioln Stcakhouse in Shallotte and cups Inscribed with the col lege logo, "We Believe In You." Commissioners reviewed plans for a vocational classroom buUdisg sow bclug bum as well as for uo auditorium, a combiuadon administration, library and student center building and a iSTUiBwick inierHgeucy Progruiu uuiiding, for which the state has provided $402,500. Much of the new work will be flnanc^ with proceeds of $9 mllUon in bonds ap proved in 1985, the first of which will be sold Feb. 17. From the left above are Grace Beasley, commission chairman; Regina White, clerk to the commissioners; Frankie RatHni, commlssloner/trustee; Kelly fiCideu, trustee; and facing the weidiiig shop, James Rabon, trustee. BY ETTA SMITH Efforts to prevent annexation of the Holden Beach causeway gathered momentum this week—and opponents of the move say they must continue to move fast or they’ll lose the cliance altogether. Opponent Cletis Clemmons .said unless residents can convince Rep. E. David "Butch" Redwine and Sen. R.C. Soles Jr. to help them, the area will certainly be annexed by Holden Beach. Redwine and Soles are expected to attertd a meeting at 4 p.m. Saturday at the Seafood Barn Restaurant. At that meeting, Clemmons said he will present the two with petitions for help containing about 74 sighatures. Soles, of Tabor City, Is a member of the State Senate’s Municipal Incor porations Committee. . Hie latest effort to Incorporate Uic' area' began after the Holden Beach town board voted Jan. S to prepare a notice of intent to annex approi- iinately 1,500 feet on the waterway west of the bridge and about 1,000 feet on the east The area also ex tends one mile down the causeway in a 55-foot strip. to iviuSCd after he heard that residents in the preyed area were strongly opposed to annexatioi'i. Clemmons said he expects Holden Beach commissioners to adopt the noUce of intent to annex at its Feb. 2 meeting, making it harder for residents to incorporate the proposed town. State laws allow towns to annex an area without the support of the residents, he said. Also the N.C. I>cague of Municipalities, a strong lobbying group, discourages the in*, corporation of an area to avoid an nexation. “But we proposed incorporating this area back last June, before they (Holden Beach) ever decided to an nex," said Gemmons. Redwine introduced a bill to inc'or- poratc North Holden Beach in the N.C. General Assembly last June. But he dropped the bill after it spark ed opposiUon from some residents of the proposed corrmuinity and Holden Beach officials. Genuiivsis said propments cf In corporation would ratlier liavc Uieir own town tlian be annexed by Holden Beach. The only reason the town wants to annex them is for the $200,000 in property taxes it can get Ji UlUk-rVIdl I " y^CtS On Wat©r, Town Hall BY MARJORIE MEGIVERN Calabash residents wlU get water and a new town haU, fdlowing town council action Monday. The Calabash Town Council voted to advertise for bids on a town watci system and awarded a contract for construcUon of its town haU to Associate Builders Corp. of North Myrtle Beach, S.C., on a time con- Ungency. A decision on the water sy.stem was spurred by resident Gordon Ragsdale, who came to the mecUng with cost figures he had nsfcmbled from a develc^r that were about half those cited in an engineering study done by Lewis and Associates of Shallotte. In response to citizen demands for acUon on water at the last council meeting, members began a discus- siMi of aitematives. Town Attorney Michael Ramos reported it was im- rf practical to consider asking the coun- subscribers." said. "We have ISO potential sul»cribers now, and we might dou ble in population by 2005, but the Sunset Beach system is only moderately profitable with 600 ty to provide water to Uie town as though it were an unincorporated area. “For one Uiing, that would re quire a feasibility study and it would take two or three years," he said. As council members discussed the advisability of the town operating a water system, as opposed to turning the system over completely to the county, Ragsdale spo’xe up. ‘Tm uneasy about Calabash running a water systeni, because we can’t grow enough to make it profitable." he Snowfall Was Only A Dusting Brunswick County Schools closed today in anticipation of hazardous road conditions, but the area receiv ed only a light dusting of snow from a storm moving up the coast The National Weather Service late Monday had predicted a 60 percent chance of overnight snow accumula tion in Southeastern North Carolina, with a 50 percent chance of morning .snow. There was snow—a little. Shallotte Pobit meteorologist Jackson Canady said when melted It inight add up to one-tenth of an inch of water. Still, he said, the depth of winter has just about arrived for Brunswick County. “Overall we’ve fared very well, though it’s wet," he said. But freezer like temperatures are still in the forecast, along with above-average precipitation. Nighttime low.s should average in the low 30s, rising to daytime Idghs averaging in the lower 5Qs. He ex pects UireeKiuarters of an inch of precipitation, mostly rain. For the period Jan. 21 through 28, Canady recorded a maximum high of 58 degrees, on the 25th. The minimum low (tf 23 degrees occurred on the morning of the 24th. An averagedaUy high of 49 degrees combined with an average dally low of 33 degrees for a daily average temperature of 41 degrees, about four degrees below normal. For the period, Canady recorded 2.65 inches of precipitation, almost all of it rain. As for tracings of snow, he said, "We might get a little more." Council Member Pati Lewellyn suggested opening an escrow account to receive contributions from residents wanting water. "Then we could see who’s serious about this and work on their streets first," she said. Ragsdale said, “How about an im pact fee on evervo.ne Ln town and do ing it all at once? I don’t sec opening an account and waiting to see who’ll pay. That might take from now to Doomsday." He then presented estimates on the cost of running 12,(X)0 feet of line almg all Calabash streets, (except where county lines already exist on N.C. 179) showing the complete job could be done for about $80,000. The Lewis study had estimated a cost of $108,000. One difference in the two estimate.s was the coat of fire hydrants. Com pared to Lewis' $800 per hydrant, Ragsdale’s figure was $565. “Also, the number of hydrants can be reduc ed from the number called for in this study," he said. Another difference was in the cost of the lines. Whereas I^ewis’ estimate was $6 per foot, Ragsdale's was $3.90. “The man who gave me these doesn't want to be Identified, but he’s just built some homes and these are current figures. He has nothing to gain by providing this information." Ragsdale explained. Council nvsmbers quickly came to the conclusion they could build an en tire system in one phase, and they yearly from the causiewuy, he asserted. Clemmons ba.scd that figure on a lax rate of 2.5-conLs pei $100 valuation, while the town’s lav rate is actually 11 cents per $100 vaiuiiliun. Holden Beach resident Jolm .M Clarke compiled some properly lav figures last week from the county lav records to find out how much tiic town could actually expect to colled in taxc.s should it asmex the causeway area. He said based on the U-cent tas rate the causeway area would havt paid $7,174 in taxes to Holden Beach this year. He got the figure by using county tax maps and records, he said. Buck said Clarke's figures look ac curate to him, but the town would have to compile its own figures. .Some caiLseway property owners do favor annexation, like Inland Realty Owner Caison O’Neil and CoiTiniuruty Hiirdware owrier Bj"i> Smith. At a recent meeting of causeway residents and property owners, both said they prefer annexation by Uie town. The board hired a surveyor prepare a description of the metes . . Carolina Shores Wants Manager BY SUSAN USHEK With a decision not to incorporate behind them, Carolina Shores pro perty owners arc moving ahead to meet one of the needs that first pro mpted talk of becoming a town—full time management. The community could have a paid manager on the job in nine weeks or less, according to Al Houghton, chainrian cf the Carolina Shores Pro perty Owners Association. Robert Woodbury is chainnan of a committee appointed to draft a job description and recruit .someone to fill the post. Working with him, he said, are Charles Bingham. Jim McNamaia. Ken Earl, Peg Sawyer and Darrell Peters, who serves as liaison to the property owners im- con- voted to advertise for bids mediately, with lines to be stnicted to county specifications. It was decided to wait until bids are received, then decide what impact fees would be assessed on commer cial and residential pre^rty. Lewellyn asked, “Why should we then give the system to the county, if impact assessments will pay for it?" Ramos replied that the town could own the system but lease it to the county to operate. “If we advertise for bids, we need tc say we’re serious about these assessments," Lewellyn added. “We'd better enforce them better than we have with taxes." She also suggested the town con tinue to pursue a loan from Farmers Home Administration, for which ap plication began several months ago. Council members then turned their attention to two bids the town had received for construction of the town haU. Associated Builders submitted a bid of $28,(K)0 to construct a 952-square-foot building of cedar siding. Wood Duck Construction of Supply bid the project at $27,490.75, for a 900-square-foot metal building with brick veneer. Wood Duck representatives pointed out their plan was for a com pletely fire-resistant building that would be almost maintenance-free and could save on fire insurance. Lewellyn pointed out the metal building might not take future expan sion as easily as the one constructed of siding. Members also preferred the ap pearance of siding. The contract went to Associated (See CALABASH, Page 2-A) association board of directors. “We’re Just getting .slarte!," said Woodbury. "We’ve met once and laid the groundwork. We have ou** homework to do." Houghton said the as.sociation Is working with the I.eagLc of Municipalities on the project, and that the person chosen could come from a town management background or some other combirm- tion of education and management experience, depending upon the criteria set by the search committee. The POA expects to recruit locally and elsewhere, he added. For now, "lots of volunteers” arc required to run the community, he said. Tasks are divided among the (See CAROLINA Page 2-A) Plan To Op^ Gun Sh op On Holden Beach Draws Fire^ BY ftfARJORlE MEGIVERN Issuance of a permit for a gun shop on Holden Beach has aroused considerable protest among reddents. Town Manager Bob Buck said the permit was issued last week If Jeff Williams and George Atkins, Holden Beach poUco officers. Th8 shop is to be located In the old Holden Beach Realty buOding on Jordan 'is-Boulevard In an area ztmed for commercial establishments. Town Commterioner Gay Atkins “There’s no ordinance : sgaum it, untcrttsstsiy, I searcnedlfeo ordinances and didn'tftndaw, bat I don't tike it I don’t fee! this is the place for it" ' She also explained there te no ordinance or policy prohibiting town employees fran other en^loyment or business enterprise on thrir own time. Margaret Vasco, a Holden Beach resident, said “lots of people" were very cpsrt over Cie news. ‘Tve called people from one end to the ~ other of this beach, and everyone is against it," she said. "We’ve talked about a petition, but we realty don’t know wtet to do." . According to Vasco, pennittlng a gun shop is contradictory to other town ordinances. “We have an ordinance against fireworks and agaimt slingshots, and even against discharging firearms, so how can we allow die sale of firearrasr’ ^ iudeed. —^ - - She said this action was “against the concept of a family beach." Aisb^ she (ktscribed the location, abutting the proposed 904pace parking lot scon to be built, as “atrocious," adding, “It’s a perfect location to break Into a gun shop." . Vasco said residents irjended to tet ptenrJng and sorJng board m^beia know that “we’ve been deretict In planning."