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Shollotlc, Norlh Carolina, Wednesday, November 23, 1994
50C Per Copy
46 Pages, 4 Sections, Plus Inserts
THOMAS WRIGHT, S.C. Representative for the 9Hth house district, addresses a legislative forum at
The Brunswick Hospital sponsored by the county's three chambers of commerce Thursday night.
Seated are 14th district representatives Dewey Hill (left) and David Rednine.
Local Democrat Lawmakers
Adapting To Minority Status
BY KMC CARLSON
I"hings arc going to be very different in Raleigh next
That was the message delivered during a legislative
forum at The Brunswick Hospital Thursday night by
Democrat representatives when asked about their expe*.
tat ions for working in Republican -
controlled state house next year
Issues like health care and environ
mental regulations will take a back
seat to legislation aimed at cutting
taxes, reforming the welfare system
and giving veto power to the gover
nor, representatives told the group of
about I (XI people who attended the
forum sponsored by the county's
three chambers of commerce
Rep Dewey Hill said Republicans
"have a mandate" and arc likely to
succeed in passing many of the pro
posals listed in their conservative
"contract with voters." Rep. David
Rcdwinc gave a similar assessment of
what the new majority in the state
"The message we got from voters
was that they want less government
intrusion, lower taxes and fewer regu
lations They voted for people who supported those is
Asked if the legislature is likely to push forward with
Gov. Jim Hunt's "Year of the Coast" environmental ini
tiatives, Redwinc said he expected "real rough sledding"
for the programs.
"They carry a very heavy price tag," Redwinc said. "!
doubt very seriously if much of that will pass."
Redwine said that before the house majority changed
hands, he was in line for a co-chairmanship of the pow
" The message we
got from voters
was that they want
intrusion , lower
taxes and fewer
voted for people
those issues. "
? Rep. Dewey Hill
crful House Appropriations Committee. The job will
now go to a Republican legislator. Still. Redwine says
he believes there can be cooperation between the two
parties on some issues, including his bill to hold a refer
endum on a lottery in North Carolina.
"The Republican majority has it on their agenda to
put it on the ballot, so they'll have 67
votes plus mine," Rcdwint said. "But a
lot of those folks who were elected got
support from the Christian coalition.
They voted against (a lottery) before. So
it will be interesting to see if they can
take the heat."
Redwinc said a referendum could
open up other options for legalized gam
bling, including horse racing, video pok
er and riverboat gambling. He called the
latter "a great economic development
tool" that could boost construction along
the Cape Fear River.
None of the representatives voiced
support for the idea of having school
boards and county commissioners set
their own tax rates for individual bud
gets. The proposal is expected to be dis
cussed in the legislature as a means of
making school systems more account
able for spending.
In directing the school funding question to the legisla
tors, Kelly Holden, former chairman of the Brunswick
County Commissioners, said the local school board "has
handily used the commissioners as a scapegoat" for defi
ciencies in education. He questioned the wisdom of hav
ing a jury of ? 2 people "who nobody voted for" set the
county tax rate.
Both Hill and Redwinc said such disputes should be
(See DELEGATION, Page 2-A)
CRC Votes Against
New Measure For
Protecting Bird Island
BY SUSAN USHER
A state commission chargcd with regulating planning
and development in 20 coastal counties decided Friday
that additional development restrictions aren't needed
IOI oily Ssiaiiu.
The island had hcen nominated by members of the
Bird Island Preservation Society as a coastal complex
area of concern or AEC, on the premise that existing
regulations do not afford sufficient protection of the
area's natural and aesthetic values. If so designated, the
state would have had to establish specific use standards
governing the island and could have controlled density
of development ? something not provided by the six oth
er AEC designations thai already apply to the undevel
oped harrier island west of Sunset Beach.
"I'm disappointed that the CRC did not have the forti
tude to v.ote positively," Bird Island Preservation Society
President Bill Ducker said Monday afternoon. He said
the N.C. Coastal Federation had presented a "factual,
no-gingerbread" presentation in committee.
"I think the reasons the CRC gave for not following
the staff's recommendation were inadequate. For some
one to say to me it's already under six AECs and doesn't
need another. I don't agree with that."
Among other things, the society had been concerned
that local zoning regulations could not be relied upon to
ensure low-density development, citing the developer's
application pending before the Sunset Beach Town
Council for a lessening of the rules. Council will hold a
public hearing on the request Monday. Dec. 5, at 7 p.m.
at the Maples Clubhouse, Sea Trail.
The town planning and zoning hoard has recommend
ed no changc in the island's conservation reserve zon
ing, but the council is not bound by that recommenda
While agreeing the island met the necessary qualifica
tions to become a coastal complex AEC, first a commit
tee and then the full Coastal Resources Commission vot
ed against taking the nomination the next step to public
hearing, ending the nomination process.
They concurred with the argument by Rees Poag,
whose mother, Jane P. Price, owns the island, that a sev
enth AEC designation on the island would be "regulato
ry overkill." Poag. who could not be reached Monday,
and his agents have contended that existing regulations
are adequate to protect the natural environment and that
additional regulation could make it too expensive to de
velop the island for residential use. They suggested
some conditions could be added to the development per
mit if necessary.
On an 8-4 vote the CRC chose to uphold a recom
mendation from the Planning & Special Issues Com
mittee and not send the proposal to public hearing.
Voting in the minority were David McNaught, Courtney
Hackney, Richard Hargitt and David Adams.
Voting in the majority were Erie Haste Jr., Reginald
Caroon, Roger Crowe, Bob Emory. Peggy Griffin, Paula
Kirby, Timothy Thornton and Baxter Williams.
Chairman Gene Tomlinson does not vote except to
(See COASTAL, Page 2-A)
Old Oak Tree
STAFF PHOTO BY LYNN CaSRon
The massive oak tree near the traffic light on N.C. 1 79 in downtown Calabash was felled on Monday.
The white oak had very hard wood, said Rose Clemmons of Massie Tree Service of Supply , which was
hired to remove the dead tree. iMrge branches were removed before the tree was cut at its trunk and al
lowed to fall onto the highway. "People keep on telling me it was something like 300 years old,"
Clemmons said of the tree.
VOTE TO MEET ONCE MORE
Outgoing Commissioners Do Some Last-Minute Spending
BY ERIC CARLSON
In a round of last-minulc appro
priations, the outgoing Democrat
dominated Brunswick County Board
of Commissioners spent more than
$191,400 during its last regular
meeting before a new Republican
majority takes office Dec. 5.
But instead of adjourning for the
last time, the board agreed to recess
until Nov. 30, when commissioners
will have a final opportunity to ap
point 16 members to area advisory
boards and commissions.
Without discussion, the commis
sioners voted unanimously to use
$162,000 of the county's unspent
fund balance to purchase 10 new pa
trol cars for the sheriff's department.
Due to their heavy usage, the
county normally replaces 10 to 12
sheriff's department vehicles during
each budget cycle. The new cars
were requested in the 1994-95 bud
get, but were cut out of the spending
plan by temporary County Manager
"They put so many miles on them
that we have to replace some every
year or we'll be forced to buy twice
as many the next year," Com
missioner Jerry Jones said after the
meeting. "I don't know how they
got cut out. But I think they do need
The Brunswick County Economic
Development Commission also re
ceived $15,300 from the commis
sioners Monday night for an auto
mobile purchase that was discussed
and denied by the board during bud
Tom Monks, executive director of
the EDC, told the commissioners
that mileage reimbursement for
EDC employee Steve Johnson "av
erages $400 to $600 per month."
The new car will be used by
Monks, while Johnson will be given
the EDC's old automobile. An ap
propriation of $1,500 for mainte
nance and insurance on the new car
also was approved.
Another $3,700 was given to the
EDC for "marketing and advertising
efforts," which Monks said had to
be reduced by $5,500 due to the new
The approval came despite the
recommendation of County Man
ager Wyman Yelton to deny the re
quest. Yelton said the need for a new
car was "not an emergency situa
tion" and advised that the request
"could have been addressed and re
solved during the regular budget
At the request of county health
Director Michael Rhodes, the com
missioners earmarked $7,472 to par
tially fund a new environmental
health specialist position. Rhodes
agreed to apply $10,000 worth of
lapsed salary funds in the health de
partment budget to cover the re
mainder of the $17,472 needed to
fill the position for six months.
The board denied Rhode's request
to for an additional $16,160 to pur
chase a vehicle and supplies for the
new position. Me was told to make
do with existing vehicles and equip
Rhodes asked for the new posi
tion after the board of health voted
unanimously to request another en
vironmental health specialist. A
study committee recommended the
new position to allow the county to
catch up on a backlog of low-pres
sure septic system inspections.
In July, 1992, the N.C. Com
mission for Health Services turned
over responsibility for monitoring
the pump-type septic systems to
county health departments. Failure
to keep up with their supervision
could lead the state to prohibit their
use in Brunswick County, Rhodes
Ixiw-pressure scptic systems are
used on small lots that do not have
enough space for a traditional gravi
ty-powered septic system. Bruns
wick has more such systems than
any county in the state, Rhodes said.
The county commissioners will
decide whether to refund the posi
tion permanently during budget dis
cussions next spring.
At the request of Rose Ann Mack,
executive director of the Cape Fear
Council of Governments, the com
missioners agreed to appropriate
$1,470 in matching funds as
Brunswick County's share of a new
alternative sentencing program for
The "Community Penalties
Program" will allow judges to
choose a sentencing package that re
quires full restitution to victims, em
ployment, community service, sub
stance abuse treatment and job train
ing for convicted criminals instead
of an active prison term.
Brunswick County will partici
pate in the program along with
(See OUTGOING, Page 2-A)
Busint'ss Nf*s ...8-9A
Church News II \ I
Crime Report 'M>
Court Docket 10 III)
Obituaries II \
Opinion 4-5 \
People In The News fill
Plant l)ni<bir 311
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