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A True inspiration
She dropped out in seventh grade but went
on to a achieve a master's degree and a
teaching career. Page 7-B.
They're Banking On it
Southern National and BB&T merge to form
North Carolina's largest banking institution.
This and other business news. 11-c
Grid Time Again
Coach Yogi Hickman makes his
WBHS debut as the "nrojans face
the Falcons in Pikeville, i-d.
One of these youngsters is a Supply Elementary School student with a part in the upcoming motion picture "Little Giants. " You 'Q find him
in the yellow helmet and "under the sun " on Page 1-B.
SEPTIC REPAIRS TOO SLOW ~~
Health Board May Nix Supply School .Openina
BY ERIC CARLSON
The Bninswick County Board of Health may
prohibit the opening if Supply Elementary School
if education officials don't move quickly to fix a
sewage treatment system they knew to be in "a
state of total failure" for the past five months.
At its tegular meeting Monday night, the board
directed county Health Director Michael Rhodes
to meet with Superintendent Ralph Johnston this
week to ask how education officials plan to repair
the faulty septic system and to find out why it
hasn't been fixed already.
Rhodes was told to inform Health Board
Chairman Patrick Newton of his fiwtiiwgp later
this week. Newton said if Rhodes' findings indi
cated that the problem is not being addresaed ade
quately, he will call a special board meeting to
whether or not to keep the school fkmH
"I want to know if there is any health risk to
any children at that school,'* said board member
Bruce Quaintance. "We won't have another regu
lar meeting before classes start. If that school is
not safe, I say we should dose it Some kind of
time limit needs to be put on them."
1 agree," said member Joey Galloway.
"They've been winging it since Match. They
need to know they have a deadline to meet"
Five weeks ago, the health department official
ly notified Brunswick County Schools that the
"pump-and-hauT process used to dispose of
sewage from Supply Elementary School since
mid-March is acceptable "for emergency and
temporary situations only," and not suitable for
"Supply Elementary School does not need to
be reopened or operated until the wastewater dis
posal treatment system is functioning properly,"
said the letter from Environmental Health
Specialist Bruce Withrow.
Employees at Supply Elementary, which
opened just two years ago, informed health offi
cials about obvious problems with its low-pres
sure septic system in mid-March. Health inspec
tors found the nitrification field in "a stale of total
failure" with all the underground sewage distribu
tion trenches saturated and effluent spurting out
of the ground whenever the system's pumps were
School officials immediately hired a private
contractor to pump the partially treated sewage
effluent into trucks and haul it away for disposal.
The temporary treatment process has cost the
school syittem more than SI 8,000 so for.
"Our number-one consideration is public
health," said Rhodes. "So far the pump-and-haul
has done a good job. It's a reliable short-term so
Repair Plan Said To Be In Progress,
But State Officials Haven't Received It
?Y SUSAN USHER
Schools Superintendent Ralph Johnston said
Monday that after talking with architect Charles
H. Booey Jr. he "anticipates" Supply Elementary
School will be able to open at the same time at
Last local aid stale
questioned whether the K-5 grade school should
be allowed to reopen. A two-year-old wastewater
treatment field that failed in mid-March stil] had
not been rr paired or a plan Cor its repair submitted
for review and approval.
As of Tuesday, the N.C Division of Environ
mental Health still had not received a proposed
plan for repair* from Booey Architects or the pro
ject civi] engineering firm Talbeit A Bright
Last week Supply Elementary Principal
Carolyn William* assured The Brunswick Beacon
tbe school would reopen on schedule.
Health Director Michael Rhodes said the health
department and other parties involved aw afl
working to meet the school opening deadline
(Aug. 23 now for students, but with the possibili
ty of a delay until Sept 6), but that there are no
* tn - a rlt, m awj n ? - - -* ....
we re going to wore m tzutf direcuoa and we
hope everybody else it going to," he said last
(See SUPPLY, Page 2-A)
lubon. What we haven't seen is progress on a re
Project architect Charles H. Baney Sr., told the
Beacon last month he was confident it could be
repaired before the school's scheduled Aug. 23
opening. But as of Aug. 8, Rhodes said the state
officials who must approve the repairs had not re
ceived plans for the proponed upgrade.
"I saw Dr. Johnston quoted as saying those
plans were already in Raleigh,'* Quaintance said.
"Evidently that's not true."
Quaintance alao expressed concern Monday
that soil contaminated by sewage overflow might
pone a health threat to rtndents at the school.
"Has anyone run any tests on that dm?" he
asked. I've had parents complain to me about
their kids coming home with sewage on their feet
If that was my child, I would have a concern "
Rhodes said that "some sort of barricade"
would have to be constructed at the school to
keep children away from any areas where sewage
effluent reached the surface of school property.
Newton said the health department should have
acted sooner to force the school system to fix the
failed sewer system.
"What happened? If this was identified in
March, why hasn't there been any action?"
Newton asked, "if this was a private individual,
we would have sent him a letter telling him he
had X number of days to correct the problem or
shot down. We haven't put any pressure on them.
Can't we give them some sort of ultimatum?"
Rhodes *?"* the health department has done
"everything it could" to encourage officials to
move forward with repairs on the failed septic
system "except shutting the school down."
"We never made that an option to them, did
we?" Newton asked.
"Not yet," said Rhodes.
Board member Maliston "Moe" Stanley sug
gested that Rhodea make a "first-hand survey" of
pf at SuppJy ElcmcQtsiy sod
board of education's plana to fix them. Rhodea
said he would visit the site with JohHton and in
nnrt U* *" ** 4a ? MLa. ?*_? J f?
port ms rinaings 10 r*cwion oy rnosy.
The proposal was informally approved without
I Short Of Cash,
] Education Board
J May Delay First
I Day Of School
BY SUSAN USHER
It's likely the Brunswick County
Board of Education will delay the
opening of school until after Labor
Day, when it will know from the
courts how much money is available
to operate the schools during the
If a quorum is available, the board
expects to meet at 8 a.m. today
(Thursday) in emergency session to
consider a proposed calendar revi
sion that calls for teachers to return
Sept. 1 and students to return Sept
"Right now the school system
doesn't have a budget," said
Superintendent Ralph Johnston.
"We're operating on an interim bud
get resolution, which means we're
spending only the bare minimum
funds needed to operate. We have
only limited savings to draw from."
He announced that the board was
considering the option Monday
night after the board and some
school officials met in closed ses
sion with Attorney Glen Peterson to
While state funds are flowing into
the system, Johnston Mid. th?i mon
ey can only be used far specific pur
poses. County money is used to pay
electric and other utility bills, to
maintain buildings and grounds and
to pay slightly more than 100 of the
school system's 1,000-pins employ
ees, and other expenses directly re
lated to operation of the schools.
"If we start without a budget and
what we can spend is only detrimen
tal to the schools, I think the best
thing to do is to wait and see what
happens," said school board
Chairman Donna Baxter. "Where
are we going to get the money to
hire these people?"
On Aug. 29 Superior Court Judge
Jack Thompson will hear arguments
for and against overturning a Bruns
wick County jury verdict swarding
the schools $14 million, or $4.8 mil
lion more than county commission
ers had allocated for the 1994-95
budget year that began July 1.
"Until then," said Johnston, "the
Brunswick County Schools do not
know what their budget is."
The bearing is the latest stage in
the ongoing funding dispute be
tween the school board and the
board of county commissioners. The
school board took the commission
ers to court for the second consecu
tive year, saying its budget alloca
tion wasn't adequate to continue
programs in place last year.
Thompson will consider motions
by the county's attorney asking that
? judgment notwithstanding, les
sen the sum awarded by the jury or
grant a new trial because jurors al
legedly did not follow the court's in
structions in reaching its verdict;
? gnat a slay of execution of the
judgment until the appeal is final, so
that the county does not have to set
'aside funds right away to cover the
? or grant a new trial on the basis
of judicial error in not allowing cer
tain evidence to be introduced dur
ing the jury trial
Commissioners have said they
(See ALL, Page 2-A)
Rudy Hewett of Old Ferry
Road near Hoiden Beach
displays the odd fish he
found in a net while
shrimping with his son Larry
off Summer Place in the
Friday atoning. Neither
to they brought it to the N.C.
199 to 406 feet. Aqmarittjoe
Spkzer said Tneaday that the
fish was "alive and weR" and
Body-ln-Dumpster Rumor Puzzles, Annoys Authorities
BY ERIC CARLSON
The nude, fully clothed body of a
teenage female in her mid 30a was
not found in a dumpster near
Longwood or Aah or Calabash or
Ocean Isle Beach or at the Oxpen
solid waste convenience site off
Hoidea Beach Road, authorities said
over and over again last week.
Repeat, a body WAS NOT
"If I hear about it one more time,
I'm going to scream," said the voice
on the other end of the telephone at
the Brunswick County Sheriff's
Department Thursday afternoon.
There isn't ANY body in ANY
It was the rumor that wouldn't go
away throughout western Brunswick
County from Bolivia to the stale line
last week. At leaat a dozen people
inquired about the alleged find at the
Beacon office last week. Adve
rating representatives heard about it
wherever they roamed
"I heard it was in four different
dumpsten in four parts of the coun
ty," said CeCe Gove. "Someone told
me the body fell out of a garboge
track at Oxpen and they had shut it
down and called investigators Other
people told me it was found in Ash
The more the story got around,
the more birane it became. Some
said the victim had its eyes gouged
oul Another claimed the fingers
were cut off. A third said the dead
woman was an informant for drag
agents whose body was found (in a
dumpster, of course) with a surveil
Lance wire wrapped around it
Deputy Ll Carl Pearaoa said he
personally fielded at least 10 calls in
the past two weeks inquiring about a
woman's body being found in n
dumpsier Each one had its own set
of details about the incidcat. he said.
"The rumor mill was unreal,'' said
Peterson. "First it was a while fe
male. Then she had bioode hair.
Then she was nude. Then she had
^ mm iL-ii . a nM J ^ 1 ii ii ig
ncr tnroat cut ana mere was wood
everywhere. Every tune we ?ot a
new location, I told a road deputy to
go check it out And of course,
every time they arrived, there wasn't
"It was driving the road and de
tective di vis tons wacko," he said.
"Finally I had to tell the deputies
that if anyone called, tell them there
IS no body."
That's what a lot of people heard
on their police scanners Sunday
night, when the Emergency Com
munications (911) Center informed
a BCSD shift supervisor that a
w? led to talk to hSXboutiHborfr
in a gsrhagr dumpater" at Holden
"Till them there IS no body," the
- - - ..rl8n.il * *
sergeant radioed Dtct
(See NO BODY, Page 2-A)