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GOP Commissioner Shaw Charges Clegg Forced Out By 'Bad Democrats'
BY KRIC CARLSON The letter was printed on ?'d ment" and "unwavering dewe lo maintain the highest Clegg, suggesting that he was forced to resign for ethi
Threc months after Democratic Party leaders called county stationery bearing the ' standard of excellence, integrity, honesty and account- cal reasons.
on their newly-elected commissioners to fire him, and names of the five previous Rcpub- ability" in county government. "There was a lot of political pressure from a few bad
amid speculation of mounting pressure for his dis- lican commissioners who hired Only once in Clegg's letter did he hint at the political Democrats," Shaw said. "Some of them wanted him to
missal. County Manager/Attorney David Clegg Mon- Clegg, a Democrat, as their county H BH pressures that reputedly swirled around him since the do some things that were not exactly honest and he
day ended his eight-year tenure in Brunswick County manager in January 1991. Clegg H YV incoming Democratic commissioners gave him a lukc- would not yield to them. So he had to go.
government. was named county attorney in 1984 ^ ^ mM warm thrcc-to-two vote of confidence when they rc-ap- "He told me he had about all he could stand," Shaw
Planning Director John Harvey has been named in- and subsequently served as assis- - JJT pointed him last December. said.
tcrim county manager. Shallotte lawyer Michacl tant county manager, acting county "I leave with the knowledge that 1 was never intimi- When asked for an example of what things Clegg
Ramos will act as interim county attorney. As Clcgg's manager and interim county man- dated into compromising my personal or professional had allegedly been asked to do, Shaw said only, "You
Administrative Assistant Kelly Barefoot struggled un- ager. . Hi ethics to bow to the baneful wishes or agenda of anoth- be here and you'll see."
successfully to hold back tears. Commissioners Chair- In guardedly polite language, CLEGG er," the letter said. Asked about Shaw's charges. Warren said, "1 don't
man Don Warren read Clcgg's letter of resignation to a Clcgg's letter spoke of his pride in the county's "dedi- After the meeting. Commissioner Donald Shaw know what he's talking about."
hushed, standing-room-only crowd at the board's regu- catcd employees" and his "highly personal commit- charged that the new Democrat majority had caved in Warren said he was not surprised by the resignation
lar meeting Monday night. to their party's leadership by not actively supporting (See CLEGG, Page 2-A)
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P.O. BOX 162
SPRINGPORT MI 49284
Thirty-First Year, Number 1 7 e 1993 TMt B*UNJW1C* tEACON Shallotte, North Carolina, Thursday, March 18, 1993 50c Per Copy 36 Pages, 3 Sections, 1 Insert
COUNTYMQE DAMAGE ESTIMATED AT $23 MILLION
Intense Winter btorm Wreaks Hurricane-Like Damage
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STAff PHOTO 8Y DOUG HUTTlt
WAVES WASH OVER THE STREET at the east end of Holden Beach Saturday afternoon. Hurricane-force winds knocked down the
"Road Closed" sign. More storm photos, Page 6-A and throughout this issue.
Holden Takes Hardest Hit With $8 Million Loss
BY DOUG RUTTKR
The worst storm sincc Hurricane Hugo sliced
dunes, shredded roof shingles, flooded homes and
smashed decks and walkways at Holden Beach
Saturday?causing an estimated $8 million in
"It was a devastating storm," Mayor Wally
Auslcy said. "We had warnings we had a severe
storm moving up, but 1 don't think anybody antic
ipated the hurricanc-force winds."
Steady winds of 45 mph to 50 mph were
recorded for 10 hours straight, with gusts up to 83
mph, said Building Inspector Dwight Carroll. "It
hit 75 several times."
As a result, nearly every house on the island
sustained at least some roof damage. Powerful
winds flipped heavy shingles through the air like
sheets of paper.
"From one end of the island to the other we
had shingle damage," Town Manager Gary Parker
said. A few homes lost portions of their roofs,
while others had vinyl siding ripped away.
"We were just littered all over with debris,"
Mayor Ausley added. "I heard some folks say the
wind was stronger than it was during Hugo."
State officials were expected to visit Holden
Push For New
BY LYNN CARLSON
After 100 cars carrying day visi
tors were stranded on the island of
Sunset Beach for more than nine
hours Saturday, the town council has
asked for a renewed push toward re
placing the old?and controver
Business News 12C
Calendar of Events ....10C
Church News 6B
Court Docket ?IOC
Crime Report .7B
People In The News ?4B
Plant Doctor .JB
Television Listings ...&-9C
"It was a devastating
storm. We had warnings
we h~d a severe storm
moving up, but I dont
think anybody anticipated
?Mayor Wally Ausley
Beach Wednesday to determine if the town
should receive government assistance. "If we can
get declared a disaster area we'll get a whole lot
more money," Carroll said.
Strong winds were responsible for much of the
damage, including flooding of the bottom floors
of most canal homes. Storage areas and living
units of older homes were flooded with several
inches of water when the man-made canals
couldn't contain the wind-driven high tide
r> .-.I. - a ? r* . , i
oriuye Mr ouriser
Cars Are Stranded
"People sat over there all that
time running their engines for heat
and running out of gas," Mayor
Mason Barber said. "1 was there
when they came back across, and
they looked like they'd been through
the Battle of the Bulge."
The bridge cannot be safely oper
ated in winds higher than 30 miles
an hour, Barber said. Orders came
from the N.C. Department of Trans
portation to swing the structure open
and tic it off at 12:30 p.m., as winds
began to howl and the wind-driven
udc reached flood stage.
The water went down, but the
wind did not subside enough for the
bridge to be used until 9:30 p.m.
The storm escalated rapidly, be
ginning Saturday with a pre dawn
thunderstorm and stiff winds,
though by mid-morning the sun was
shining and the temperature in the
60's. However, the barometer
dropped and winds increased, dri
ving the mid-day high tide out of the
bounds of canals, marshes and wa
terways. By early evening, the tem
perature was falling toward freezing.
Saturday at mid-day.
Canals overflowed around noon and the water
rose rapidly until it covered yards and streets. The
strong winds apparently kept the tide from reced
Town employees were called in over the week
end to help clear streets and help ensure the pub
lics safety. Volunteer damage assessment teams
went to work Sunday to figure the losses.
Parker said the most extensive damage oc
curred cast of Holden Beach Bridge, where bcach
erosion was at its worst and several homes had
portions of their roofs lifted off.
The storm left 11 Holden Bcach residences un
inhabitable due to damage to roofs or septic sys
tems. Carroll said the homes can be used again af
ter repairs are made.
Parker said the storm washed away an estimat
ed six feet of sand dune from the cast end of the
island to the 900 block of Ocean Boulevard West.
There wasn't much erosion west of that point.
"We had a good bit of beach damage." The
town manager estimated that 90 percent of the
walkways cast of the 900 block were damaged.
Many were washed away and left scattered along
(See HOLDKN, Page 2-A)
Many had assumed the early
storm was all there would be; by the
time the need to evacuate could be
considered, it couldn't logistically
"We had five minutes' warning
that we had to tie off the bridge,"
said Sunset Beach Town Admin
istrator Linda Fluegel. That time
was used to dispatch a fire truck and
fire fighter?who is also a Shallotte
police officer and emergency med
ical technician?to the island.
Ironically, one person in need of
help during the bridge closure was
one of the most vocal opponents of
the proposal to replace the span with
a high-rise bridge. Warren D. "Bud"
Knapp Sr., a 75-year-old diabetic
who recently underwent surgery, got
caught at his island house without
"We went over to check on things
when we heard that 30 milc-an-hour
winds were forecast, and we thought
we were on an outgoing tide," said
Knapp, whose other residence is in
Carolina Shores. Knapp's family
contacted the mayor for help later in
(See SUNSET, Page 2-A)
BY THE NEWS STAFF
Still reeling from a severe winter storm that left shingles and other roof
debris littering yards from Calabash to Lcland in its wake, Brunswick
County residents hoped Tuesday that weather forecasters erred in predict
ing rain Wednesday.
By late Monday mounting storm damage estimates exceeded S23 mil
lion, with seven municipalities and other agencies still to report to the
county emergency management office. Damage estimates were ranging
from S230.000 at Sunset Beach to S8 million at Holdcn Beach.
"If it rains we could have a lot more serious structural damage," said
Cecil Logan, Brunswick County's emergency management coordinator. "I
wish the rain would hold off until people can get these roofs patched.
"If we get this inch-and-a-half of rain they're calling for, with all the
shingles off, wc could triple this figure."
One roofing contractor, Lynn Smith of Ash, said he had received more
than 100 service calls by Monday.
Logan arrived at his office at 10 a.m. Monday to coordinate the post
storm response, having struggled since Saturday morning to return early
from a radiation protection conference in San Diego, Calif. Logan praised
the team that operated in his stead throughout the storm: Brenda Freeman,
his administrative assistant; Jerry Webb, county utility director; and Kelly
Barefoot, public information officer/clerk to the board of commissioners.
Rain, snow, flooding, tornadoes, high tides and gale force winds
statewide led Gov. James Hunt to declare a state of disaster in Brunswick
and 39 other North Carolina counties Monday and to ask President Bill
Clinton to declare the state a federal disaster area. A state damage assess
ment team was expected in Brunswick County Wednesday.
The severe winter storm, described as the "worst storm of the century"
as it swept up the East Coast, battered Brunswick County throughout the
day Saturday with steady gale force winds and occasional gusts of
Category II hurricane force (96 mph to 110 mph), topped by a late-evening
dusting of snow. Pressure-packed breakers pounded the coastline, gnawing
away 10 or more feet of occanfront dunes, while wind-propclled high water
caused island canals to overflow their banks and flood surrounding proper
ties and roadways.
Shallotte Point weather waichcr Jackson Canady said the storm was
"very close in intensity to Hurricane Diana (in September 1984) with one
difference?lop winds during Diana arrived at high tide, causing more ex
tensive dune ovcrwash and water-related damage.
At the Brunswick County Airport on Long Beach Road a wind sock
that extends fully in 50-mph winds was ripped off, breaking a 4-inch by 4
inch metal pole, reported Lt. Carl Pearson of the Brunswick County
Chuck Holtzinger, a wcalher scrvicc specialist with the National
Weather Service office in Wilmington, said the winter storm had the lowest
pressure of any system measured by the Wilmington office since Hurricane
Donna in 1960. Barometric pressure fell to 980 millibars over land during
Hurricane Donna, just 8 millibars less than the 972 millibars of pressure
measured during Saturday's storm.
"It should have produced winds equivalent to a Category II hurricane?
% mph to 110 mph," said Holtzinger. "We did have gusts of up to 95 mph
recorded at Figure Eight Island, at the Bridgetender Restaurant.
At Shallotte Point, 105 miles per hour was the highest gust recorded by
wind gauge mounted at Tripp's Fishing Center.
"There were 6-foot waves in the Intracoastal Waterway with whitccaps
all the way across," said Joyce Land. Water rose approximately two feet in
side the tackle shop, about the same as during the 1987 New Year's Day
On the hill nearby a cedar tree blew over, uprooting a bed of tumips. "I
was up on a stepladder picking turnips from the roots of the tree," said
Land. "I got a mess of them."
Falling trees and limbs downed electrical power lines "all over," dis
rupting service at one time or another to 90 percent of Brunswick Electric
Membership Corp.'s 47,000 customers in a four-county area, said General
(See STORM, Page 2-A)
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STAff PHOTO BY SUSAN USHlt
HIGH WINDS and high water forced closure of the floating Sunset Beach Bridge to vehicular traffic
without notice shortly after noon Saturday. The state Department of Transportation requires that the
bridge be swung open during winds exceeding 30 miles an hour to prevent the span from being dam
aged. About 100 day visitors were stranded on the island for nine hours, according to Mayor Mason