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Meet Helen P. Laugisch,
Couniy Teacher Of The Year
If you leach students to think, says Brunswick County's
1987 -reacher of the Year, they then can learn most
anything. Meet her Under the Sun, Page 1-A.
Spots Are Running;
Not Always Biting
Net fishermen were racking up early
this week as spots began running
again close to the beache.s. Uetails
arc in the fishing report. Page U-C\
It's Ideal Weather
For Festival By The Sea
Perfect weather's forecast for the weekemi. wIh-m
Holden Reach revs up for the N.C. Festival Hv Thr Sea.
A special supplement inside this issue takes n #-!i.srr
:»PR I NGF^.jR r 'll
Twenty-fifth Year. Number 51
IW7 iHi iRUMswtcK MACON Shollotte, Nofth Carolina, Thursday, October 29 1987
Calabash Water Referendum 'Fell Through The Cracks'
BY DOUG RUTTER
Because of a mix-up involving state and local
forces, Calatxish residents won't get to vote on Nov. 3
regarding as.ses.sments for a town water system. The
refcTcnduin was left off the ballots for the town election.
But while the state blames the local board of elec
tions, the local board of elections blames the town and
the town blames the state, the people of Calabash find
themselves with an issue to vote on and no method of
According lo Cuaibash Town Clerk Janet Thomas,
it was the responsiblility of the state to contact the local
board of elections concerning the addition of the
referendum to the general election ballot.
She siiid that since the referendum came about
through action of the N.C. Ciencral Assembly, it was the
suite's duty to ensure its inclusion on the ballot.
The original assessment re.soliition, sponsored by
State Rep. E. David Redwine. was ratified by both
houses of the state legislature this summer, and was
later amended to include a referendum after town
residents had petitioned for the vote.
"The state was responsible for it. and tliev failed to
do it," said Ms. Thomas.
Brunswick County Board of Elections Director Lyn
da Britt, on the other hand, said the town was responsi
ble for notifying lier office at)out the referendum.
She said she had never heard of the referendum un
til a reporter questioned her about it Tuesday morning.
She said, 'Nobody has ever contacted us about it.
The whole idea of a referendum is news to us."
Britt added that there is no way the referendum can
be included on the ballot since it Uikes about 70 days to
process any such request.
She said. ‘I can only assimie the town didn't know
what steps had to be taken."
She added that it would be mid-January before a
referendum vole could be conducted if the town made
an inunediate request.
Britt concluded. Tt helps if we know what the town
wants when we print the btillots. "
The state, meanwhile, contends that there is no pro
cedure for notifying the local board of elections concer
ning referendum votes and that it is the diitv of the
board of elections to be informed about such local hap
Cicrr\- Cohen, director of legislative bill drafting for
the N.C. General Assembly, said similar problems have
developed in the past when no one has told the board of
elections to include a referendum on the ballot.
He said the town has several legal options, the best
of which probably being to wait until next year to lmli
■It looks like it just fell through the cracks." said
The Calabash Town Council will hold a special
meeting at the town hall Friday at 4:30 p.m. to decide
what to do regarding the referendum.
Calobosh Town Council
Awaits Election Results
BY DOUG RUTTER
Calabash Towti Council members
are in a strange situation as the Nov.
3 general election approaches.
While none have filed for re-
election to the board, all six face the
possibility of ser\'ing at least another
Mayor Doug Simmons, the only
candidate who filed with the board of
elections, said. **I was really disap-
pcinH'd that no one filed."
The curreiii board ;\ill sene until
their terms expire the first Monday
in December, but since no one filed
for lowTi council and there is nc
evidence or rumors of last-minute
WTite-in campaigns, their service
could continue—cither by election as
write-in candidates or by appoint
Board member Linda Roberts
said, "I think that if all of us were pul
best thing for the town."
North Carolina Board of Elections
Director Alex Brock said that every
year approximately 25 towns find
themselves in a situation in wliich no
one has filed for office. He added that
in all cases, it has been resolved
through write-in votes.
He said if a majority ol council
members are elected tat least
three), they will elect persons to fill
any remaining vacant seats.
Brock said that he has never seen
an instance where a majority was not
elected, but said if tliat rarity should
occur, state law docs provide for the
board to be appointed by state
Although no present board
members will be included on the
ballot, all told The Brunswick Beacon
they would serve again if re-elected
through write-in votes.
Mrs. Roberts expressed the views
of most of the board last week when
she said, "We were fighting a losing
battle all along. We were doing a lot
of good things, but were always por
trayed as the bad guys."
Simmons added that ttie council
members were verj- disappointed
with the way people reacted to their
decisions. He said residents voiced
their opinions enough after the deci
sions were made, but did not par
ticipate when the issues were l>eing
All board members said the issue
of a town water system was tlie main
cause of the public's lack of support.
ralnhnsH voters were suppased lo
decide in a referendiun whether to
fund a $1G0,000 town water system
with upfront assessments, but the
referendum was never filed with the
county board of elections and was left
off the Nov. 3 ballot.
Councilman Bob Weber said,
"They all wanted water, but nobocly
wanted lo pay for it."
Board members also .said they
were surpriscl by the lack of can
Council member Pati licwellyn
said, "That svas the real shocker. We
certainly thought there would be
more people running against us."
Mrs. Roberts said that the lack of
candidates reveals the character of
some of the townspeople who com
plained while the current board was
in office, but did nothing when the
time came to file for council seats.
Board member Suzy Moore said,
‘•I've heard nothing from the town
about write-ins. I really thought
more people would run."
All board members stressed the
fact that the council has worked well
together and has accomplished very
much for the town.
Most said they didn’t file for re-
election because of the lack of sup
port the board received while serv
Ms. Moore said, "I just wanted to
give anybody else the opportunity to
serve. There were some negative
thoughts in the town, and I just
wanted to give others the same op
portunity I had.”
(See CALABASH, Page 2-A)
Sheriff Calls In SBI
To Probe Jail Death
^ SIAfr PMOrOflY «AHN AOAVS
NARCOTICS D(Ki "Buddy" Is a new addition to the Brunswick County Nar
cotics Squad that lawmen and school officials want to use in their efforts to
insure dnig-free schools.
Lawmen, Etducators Are
Reviewing Drug Dog's
Use In Local Schools
BY RAHN .ADAlViS
The Brunswick County Sheriff’s
Depiirtment last week called in the
SBI lo investigate the apparent
suicide of a youthful offender who
was in jail awaiting sentencing.
Riley Bradford Ridgeway, 17, of
Route 3. Shallotte. was found dead in
a ceil at the Bnin.swick County Jail in
Bolivia last Thursday around 3 45
I *! to HninswicV: Counlv
.Sheriff’s ( apt. Phil Perry.
•Ridgeway liad apparently hung
him-self with Ids bed linens." Perry
said, reading a prepared statement.
Perry said Ridgeway’s death was
the first to occur in county jail in at
least 18 years.
"Il's the first we've had in the past
15 to 18 years,” he said. "If there
were any prior to that, we don’t
4....V w\/ur.iy inenif John
C. I )avis .said there have been several
attempted suicides, including at
tempted liangings, in the jail during
that .same period of time.
Davis a.sked for an SBI investiga
tion of the death since his department
was involved, he said. T think it’s
proper when anything like this hap
pens-lo keep it from being called a
tainted’ inve.stigation—to have an
outside agency investigate it."
Ridgeway, who was classified as a
youtliful offender, was alone in his
cell on the night of his death, said
"They i youthful offenders) are not
allowed in with the general
population." he added.
Jailer Darryl Marlow was on duty
at the time of the incident. Davis
said, noting that no disciplinary ac
tion was taken against the jailer.
"I think he t Marlow i followed pro
per procedure." Davis said.
He said no procedural changes
would be made in liandling inmates
a.s a resuU Ihe apparent .suicide.
Davis added il.d closed-circuit
video cameras iiio- dor activity in
cellblock pa.ssageways and in the jail
dayroom, but do not monitor in
SBI Supervising Agent Dave Mar
shall of Jacksonville said Friday lus
office would make a written report to
the 13th District Attorney’s office and
an oral report to the sheriff following
Ridgeway’s body was taken to
Onsiow Memorial Hospital in
Jacksonville for autopsy last Thurs
day. Results were "consistent with
hanging," according to a state
*‘I did the autopsy. I dirln't find
anything else wrong with him. I was
told he had hanged himself, and the
results were consistent with that."
Dr. Ciidrles Garrett said Friday.
According to Perry. Ridgeway was
awaiting sentencing on a felonious
larceny conviction and was serv ing a
90-day jail sentence for escape.
Ridgeway was one of three inmates
to flee the Brunswick County Jail on
Sept. 19. only to be re-captured three
(Sec SHERIFF. Page 2-A)
Mayor Tandy Appoints
Holden Beach Mayor John Tandy
recently appointed seven area
residents and busincs.smcn to a town
committee to study cau.soway annex
Representing the town council on
the committee are Gay Atkins and
William Williamson, with Alan
Holden representing the planning
board. Causeway niercliants named
are Carvin Robinson, Lyn Holden.
Cletis Clemmons and J.W. Robinson.
Holden is a town commissioner now.
but will go off the Ixuird the first Mon
day in December, when commis
sioners to be elected on Nov. 3 take
Tandy has a.sked the cominiltee lo
decide what area, if any. slioiild Ih?
considered for annexation and com
missioned the members to do the
•Decide if the time is right for an
•Read the law together concerning
•Identify and tour any potential an
•Tabulate proper statistics concer
ning annexation including the
numlier of people and businesses af
•Appoint one other committee
member if needed.
landy also said that the annexa
tion plan should Im; approved accor-
ling to law by both the town council
and the people being annexed.
Tandy and Town Administrator
Tom Birmingham will serve as ex of
ficio members of the coiiunittee.
BY KAHN ADAMS
"We want the school kids lo
warned that we’re coming," Del. Sgl.
David Crocker, head of the
Bnmswick County Narcotics Siuad,
.said in August.
Crocker was referring to the
sheriff’s department’s plan.-; to use
their new narcotics dog to ‘.sniff out"
drugs in locker and parking areas at
the county’s three senior high
The dog. a golden retriever named
"Buddy." arrived here in late
August, after it was bought through
private donations and was trained in
But Buddy hasn't stepped on cam
pus in an official capacity yet. due to
concerns over exactly how he will be
u.sed to fight drugs in local schools.
"I'm .sure there's some concern,"
said Sheriff John C. Davis,
don’t know who's concerned
mo.sl—the people who think
students' constitutional rights might
be violated or the drug dealers."
Davis .said last week he planned to
consult with the district attorney’s of
fice about the “legal ramification.s"
of using the dog in the schools.
"I want lo make sure that we’re on
legal grounds witli wluitever we
He adiled that he recently
preached sehool officials about set
ling up demonstrations in the
schools, to show exactly what the dog
can do and •'maybe pul a little fear
into them (students)."
According to Crime Prevention Of
ficer Don Gates, the dog already has
been demonstrated to fourth-grade
students at Shallotte Middle School
and Waccamaw Elementary School.
"They loved him." Gates .said, ex
plaining that the children were amaz
ed to see Buddy find small packets of
drugs that liad been hidden in their
Interim Superintendent John
Kaufhold said last week that .school
officials also want .students to "think
twice about bringing drugs to school.
• We want to let students know we
are monitoring the problem, ami that
we're doing our best to insure drug-
free schools." he .said.
Kaufhold said la.st week he was
developing a propo.sed policy for the
school system to follow regarding the
drug dog’s use on .school campu.ses.
He said he a.sked principals for input
on the policy during a stiff meeting
Oct. 19. The Brunswick Couniy Board
of Education is expected to review
the proposed policy at its Nov. 2
Davis said last week he is wailing
to di.scu.ss the matter w ith the district
attorney’s office and to hear from the
school board Ixdorc using the dog m
Kaufliold said that after a (xilicy is
adopted, the drug dog w ill be u.sed on
(See DRUG iMHi. |»j|ge 2-A)
Voters Elect Town
Voters in 13 towns across the coun
ty w ill elect 11 mayors and 37 govern
ing board members Tuesday, Nov. 3,
when polls will be open from 6:30
a.m. lo 7;30 p.m.
Calabash, the only town which was
suppo.scd to have an additional
referendum included on the ballot,
was al.so the only towTi without coun
cil candidates (.sec related stories
Profiles of many of the candidates
can he found imside this issue of The
In all ca.ses, candidates had the op
portunity lo respond to a Beacon
ijiicslsonnairc concerning their
background and the issues facing
their respective towns. They also had
the opportunity to include a recent
photograph or have one made by the
Candidates were advised that if
they did not respond only their names
would appear in candidate profile
stories preceeding tlie election.
From Holden Beach, where a lively
campaign season is umlenvay
candidates re.spt)ndcd to the
tionnaire. And from the linv,
towns of Belville and Bolivia, no can
Seeking office in Bolivia arc in
cumbents Mayor Ina .Mae Mint/ and
Aldermen Steve Rebbin.s, Deborah
H. Stanley and Ella Jane We.scott, as
well as first-time candidate Roberts.
Willetts. .All are unoppased.
In Belville. fonner .Mayor .Mildred
S. Boney htis filed for election to a
two-year tci-m as mayor, challenging
incumbent Kennetii D. Messer Sr.
Seeking election lo two .seal.s on the
town board are Sidney Boney. an in
cumbent. Trindalyn Roswell iiiul l im
Schedler. who were appointed lo fill
vacancies on the Iwird. and Vickie I.
Gooch. Board members sme four-
Also on Nov. 3, two trustees will be
elected to Uie J. Arthur Dosher
Memorial Hospital Board of
The only Brunswick County
municipality not holding an election
Tuesday is the off.shore euiiunmiity
of Bald Head Village, where tin*
developers and property iiwiu i
association apiwinl the goveinitir