The Brunswick beacon. (Shallotte, N.C.) 19??-current, October 29, 1987, Image 1
m 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 look. THE HOh‘1 BINuERv 1 / :»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 voting. 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 penings. 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 the referendum. ■It looks like it just fell through the cracks." said Cohen. 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 two-year term. 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 ment. 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 authority. 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 discussed. 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 didates. 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 ing. 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 know." 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 Davis. "They i youthful offenders) are not allowed in with the general jail 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 dividual cells. 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 the investigation. 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 pathologist. *‘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) be Mayor Tandy Appoints Annexation Committee Holden Beach Mayor John Tandy recently appointed seven area residents and busincs.smcn to a town committee to study cau.soway annex ation. 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 office. 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 following; •Decide if the time is right for an nexation. •Read the law together concerning annexation. •Identify and tour any potential an nexation areas. •Tabulate proper statistics concer ning annexation including the numlier of people and businesses af fected. •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 schools. The dog. a golden retriever named "Buddy." arrived here in late August, after it was bought through private donations and was trained in Fayetteville. 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 Davis .said. He adiled that he recently preached sehool officials about set ling up demonstrations in the schools, to show exactly what the dog •but I the the do." ap- 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 classrooms. 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 meeting. 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 the .schools. 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 Officials Tuesday 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 this issue). Profiles of many of the candidates can he found imside this issue of The Brunswick Beacon. 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 newspiiper's staff. 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, all ques- quiet towns of Belville and Bolivia, no can didates responded. 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- year terms. Also on Nov. 3, two trustees will be elected to Uie J. Arthur Dosher Memorial Hospital Board of Trihstees. 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 board.