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No Takers Yet In
County That Prompted New Drug Excise Tax
BY RAHN ADAMS
Brunswick County law enforce
ment and state revenue officials
aren't surprised that there has been
no local response so far to a newly
instituted excise tax on controlled
substances, even though illegal drug
activity here was what prompted the
Modeled after similar laws in
other states, the controlled substan
ce tax, which went into effect Jan.
1 , was sponsored by slate Sen. Rob
ert Shaw of Greensboro and ratified
in August by the N.C. General As
sembly. Shaw, a Holden Beach
property owner, said he proposed
the new law after following cover
age of Brunswick County drug pro
secutions in The Brunswick Beacon
over the past couple of years.
J.C. Raines, manager of the N.C.
Department of Revenue office in
Shallotte, and Special Assistant Dis
trict Attorney William Wolak view
the new law from different perspec
tives but expressed similar enthusi
asm about the tax's potential impact
on drug trafficking.
"I think it's a way to enhance
drug enforcement and to try to get it
off the street," Raines commented
last week. "If (a drug dea'er) beats
the court system, he still has to pay
the tax...lt may deter somebody
who's thinking, 'Hey, I'm getting
out of this mess.'"
Wolak. whose job is to keep drug
traffickers from beating the court
system in the first place, said last
week of the new tax, "It's my inten
tion to pursue it. I think it's a great
law." Wolak prosecutes most drug
trafficking cases in the 13th Judicial
District (Brunswick, Bladen and
Columbus counties) and also works
with investigative grand jury drug
probes elsewhere in the state.
When he proposed the new tax
last March, Shaw told the Beacon
that the law's intent was not so
much to raise additional tax revenue
for the state as it was to give law
enforcement agencies another tool
with which to fight drug trafficking.
Shaw also said he had noticed that
many convicted drug dealers in
Brunswick County were not being
sentenced to mandatory minimum
(See DRUG TAX, Page 2-A)
Twenty-eighth Year, Number 10
C1M0 THE BRUNSWICK BEACON
Shallotte, North Carolina, Thursday, January 18, 1990 25$ Per Copy 28 Pages,
3 Sections J
Leaders from five local govern
ments and a power company rc
ccivcd^ more lhan $500,000 last
week to help rncct some of the costs
of recovery from Hurricane Hugo.
Joseph W. Dean, secretary of the
N.C. Department of Crime Control
and Public Safety, delivered chccks
totaling $513,032 to Bolivia last
Friday to present to local officials.
At the brief ceremony in the public
assembly building. Dean said
Brunswick County was the first site
in the stale where local leaders used
video footage to show the extent of
storm damage and subsequently
obtain a disaster declaration.
Ocean Isle Beach Mayor Betty
Williamson accepted the largest
chcck ? $113,720. Other chccks
went to Brunswick Electric Mem
bership Corp., $103,494; Long
Bcach, $97361; Holdcn Beach,
$80,992; Brunswick County.
S74.737; and Bald Head Island,
The money is part of the public
assistance program that bccamc
available when Brunswick County
was declared a fedcrah disaster area
following Hurricane Hugo. Other
local towns that received their
checks earlier include Sunset
Beach, $9,100; Southpod, approxi
mately $12,000; and Yaupon Beach,
Under the program, local govern
ments and private non-profit groups
receive reimbursements toward the
costs of debris removal, street re
pairs and other recovery operations.
Local towns will use the money to
replenish funds which were deplet
ed following the storm as a result of
extensive cleanup and repair efforts.
President George Bush's local
disaster declaration came Sept. 28,
about one week after Hugo's storm
surge resulted in an estimated $89
million damage in Brunswick
County. Almost all of the damage
was along the beachfront
Brunswick was one of 29 coun
ties in the Carolinas to be declared
disaster areas, which qualified them
for the aid program in which the
state pays 25 percent and the federal
government pays 75 percent.
So far, more than $24 million has
been paid to agencies that incurred
financial losses due to the hurri
cane. Total public assistance costs
throughout the disaster area are esti
mated at more than $63 million.
"You only need to look south to
know that we were lucky," Dean
said last week. "North Carolina's
coastal communities for the most
nart escaped the wrath of Hugo."
STAFF rHOTO ?Y KAHN ADAMS
OCEAN ISLE BEACH MAYOR BETTY WILLIAMSON, right,
accepts a check for $113,720 from Joseph Dean, secretary of the
N.C. Department of Crime Control and Public Safety, during
Friday's ceremony in Bolivia.
Car And Boat Auction
Proves Crime Does Pay
BY RAHN ADAMS
Three automobiles and two boats
linked to the local drug trade went
on the auction block last week in
Bolivia and raised $11,600 for the
Brunswick County Sheriff's Depart
ment and Brunswick County Scho
According to Chief Civil Deputy
Liston Hawes, at least 40 individu
als attended the hour-long sale that
began at ?x>n Friday in the im
poundment yard behind the sheriff's
department at the county govern
"We had a good day and a good
sale," Hawes told the Beacon Tues
day. "The county will realize a good
profit . , . The most of it will go into
the drug program."
Sheriff John C. Davis explained
Tuesday that all of the boats and ve
hicles either were seized in connec
tion with local drug activity or were
purchased by his department with
federal drug seizure funds over the
past several years.
The auction featured an 18-foot
Dixie boat and an 18-foot Manatee
boat, both with 115-horse power mo
tors and trailers; a 1981 Chevrolet
Corvette with 62,000 miles; a 1983
Pontiac Grand Prix with 98,000
miles; and a 1979 Pontiac Trans
Am with 122,000 miles.
With the exception of $1,400
paid for the Trans-Am, profit from
the auction goes to the sheriff's de
partment, Davis said. As required
hv state law, the Brunswick County
Board of Education gets the $1,400;
the Trans-Am was the only sale
item that was obtained through a
state seizure and not a federal ac
tion, noted Davis.
Hawes indicated that the sheriff's
department was most pleased with
the Corvette's $5,900 sale price,
considering that all three vehicles
have been used recently as under
cover cars by the county narcotics
squad. The Corvette also was used
by the Shallotte Police Department.
"We did a good day's work on
that one," Hawes said of the Cor
vette's sale. He added that the sher
iff's department expected to receive
only about $2,500 for the high-per
formance sport scar.
Hawes listed other top bids as
$1,900 for the Dixie boat; $800 for
the Manatee boat; and $1,600 for
the Grand Prix.
Davis indicated that the Dixie
was seized as part of a federal drug
investigation during former Sheriff
Herman Strong's administration pri
or to 1983. The Manatee was
bought with federal drug seizure
money, the sheriff said.
The sheriff's department used the
boats ? both of them "pleasure
craft" ? to investigate drug traffick
ing and assist with water searches.
Hawes explained that the boats
were sold because they no longer
meet the agency's needs. Davis ad
ded that the department is consider
ing the purchase of another vessel.
Finance Officer Dismissed
By School Superintendent
BY SUSAN USHER
Given the choice or resigning or
being dismissed, Brunswick County
Schools Business Manager Eiainc
S happell was fired from her post ef
fective Tuesday, Superintendent
John Kaufhold said Tuesday after
Kaufhold cited differences of
opinion between the two on man
agement of the finance office and
handling of personnel.
Posters advertising the vacancy
were published last Tuesday, fol
lowing a school board meeting at
which Kaufhold discussed the per
sonnel matter privately with board
members. Mrs. Shappcll called in
sick the following morning and
again this Tuesday, her status with
the school system meanwhile in
Monday, a school system holi
day, Mrs. S happell had made avail
able to die local press a letter sent to
members of the school board in
which she criticized the superinten
dent's actions and temperment in
specific situations, defended her
performance record and said she
had no plans to resign. She de
scribed Kaufhold's handling of the
personnel matter as "shabby treat
ment" and made references to a
"power struggle" and efforts among
central office staff to "manipulate"
the superintendent, and a lack of
full cooperation from some employ
ees that she said the previous super
intendent had warned her of in ad
"I have operated with integrity
and feel that I have served the
Board well," she wrote. "Under the
circumstances, I cannot resign."
S happcll said she received two
identical letters from Kaufhold ?
one by certified mail Saturday, the
other left in the door of her Wil
mington home Thursday. The letters
gave the two options available and
requested that she contact the super
intendent to discuss the matter.
Kaufhold said Tuesday he had still
not heard from her and acted after
waiting "a suitable length of time"
for her response.
In her letter to the school board
Shappell cited several points of dif
ference with the superintendent.
Among other concerns, she said
Kaufhold rejected her recommenda
tion that personal use of county ve
hicles needed to be shown as in
come on paychecks, a procedure
(See FINANCE, Page 2-A)
Shallotte Mayor Files
For County Commissioner
BY RAHN ADAMS
Shallottc Mayor Jerry Jones last
week bccamc the sccond Shalloue
town official to file for county of
fice this year, as he entered the race
for the Brunswick County Board of
Commissioners District 2 scat.
Shallottc Alderman David L. Gausc
announced for sheriff earlier this
According to the Brunswick
County Board of Elections office,
Jones, 44, of Columbus Street,
Shallottc, filed last Thursday on the
Republican ticket for the scat now
held by Democrat Benny Ludlum.
The commissioner announced in
December that he would not seek
re-election to a third term.
A former town alderman, Jones
was re-elected to his sccond consec
utive four-year term as mayor in
November 1989. He told the
Beacon Tuesday that he had consid
ered running for county office for
the past several months but didn't
make up his mind until last week.
He is employed as assistant manag
er and purchasing agent for Shal
lottc Lumber Co.
Gausc, an unsuccessful Demo
cratic candidate for sheriff in 1986,
was elected to his second straight
four-year term as Shallotte alder
man in November 1987. He is run
ning now as a Republican. Other
candidates for sheriff so far arc
Democratic incumbent John C.
Davis of Bolivia, and Republican
William "Bill" Sisk of Long Beach.
If Jones and/or Gausc eventually
arc elected to the county offices
they seek, they would be required to
resign their town positions, accord
ing to Brunswick County Elections
Supervisor Lynda Brit!. Vacancies
that occur in any clcctivc town of
fice arc filled by appointment of the
board of aldermen for the remainder
of the unexpired term.
' lit ??-* r\lK 1 nl mnn fllrt/l f rsr
A r*\J UUIU IKAoOi IIIVII IIIVU t\J a
District 2 commissioner races dur
ing the past week: Alfonza Roach,
54, of Boones Neck, as a Democrat;
and Eugene Hcwett, 67, of Route 1,
Supply, as a Republican.
Roach, a Holdcn Beach area de
veloper, is a former member of the
Brunswick County Utility Opera
tions Board and Brunswick County
Airport Commission. Hcwett is a
member of the Brunswick Com
munity College Board of Trustees
and a former member of the Bruns
wick County Hospital Authority.
Other District 2 county commis
sioner candidates arc Democrats
Allan Damcron of Holden Beach
and Joseph Stevenson of Route 3,
Supply. Raybon Moore, who had
also tiled on the Dcmocrauc ticket,
withdrew ft Gin the iacc last week,
after the board of elections office
determined that his Route 2,
Bolivia, residence was just outside
the District 2 boundaries.
According to the county elections
office, the only other pandidate to
file between Jan. 10 and 16 was
Democrat Julie Strickland, 39, of
the Olde Towne community, for the
District 5 Board of Education scat
now held by Democrat James
Clcmmons of Lcland. Clemmons,
the only other District 5 candidate
so far, is running for re-election. A
13-year resident of the county who
has done volunteer work at Lincoln
Primary School for the past 1 1/2
years, Mrs. Strickland said her goal,
if elected, is "to support first-rate
education for every child." She is a
certified substitute teacher and serv
es on the executive committee of
the new Brunswick County Educa
? Inn C/MinrliliAn
UUII t UUIIVJUUUU.
Prior to Jan. 10, the following
candidates filed for other county
and district offices, according to the
state board of elections in Raleigh,
and elections offices in Brunswick,
Columbus and Bladen counties:
?Clerk of Superior Court ? Dem
ocratic incumbent Diana Morgan of
?County Commissioner, District
5 ? Democratic incumbent Grace
Bcasley of Route 3, Lcland; and
Republican Donald Shaw of Route
1 , Lcland.
?Board of Education, District 2 ?
Democrats Joseph Carter of Route
2, Supply, and Polly G. Russ of
Shallotte; and Republicans Richard
F. Bangs and W. James Payne, both
?District Attorney ? Democrats
Rex Gore of Shallotte, and Tom
Aldridge Jr., of Route 2, Whiteville.
?Superior Court Judge ? Demo
crat William C. Gore Jr., of White
?District Court Judge ? Demo
cratic incumbent David G. Wall of
?N.C. Senate ? Democratic in
cumbent R.C. Soles Jr., of Tabor
As of Tuesday afternoon, no can
didates had filed for the N.C. House
seat currently held by Democrat E.
David Redwine of Ocean Isle
Beach, according to the elections
The filing period ends at noon
Feb. 5. Party primaries will be held
Ocean Isle Police Charge Teens
With Stealing Newspaper Racks
BY DOUG RUTTER
No news was bad news for three
area teenagers arrested last week in
connection with the theft of two
newspaper racks at Ocean Isle
Beach, including one belonging to
The Brunswick Beacon.
Ocean Isle Beach Police arrested
four local teenagers last Thursday
night following the break-in of a
coin-operated vending machine at
The Winds Beach Motel.
Three of the male teens were later
charged with the recent theft of two
newspaper racks from outside
Ocean Isie Beach Shop. Aiso, two
of the teens were charged with a
recent break-in at Salty's Surf Shop
at Ocean Isle, and all four were
arrested in connection with a series
of vending machine break-ins at
Ocean Isle and Shallotte.
Ocean Isle Beach Policeman
Jimmy Todd identified the two 16
year-old suspects as Chris Bowers
and Bryan Benton, both of Rl 6,
Shallotte. Police would not release
the names of the two 15-year-old
suspects because they are juveniles.
Benton was charged with felo
nious larceny in connection with the
thctt ot a USA today rack and mis
demeanor larceny in connection
with the theft of The Brunswick
The charges differed because the
USA Today rack was valued at
$490, while The Brunswick Beacon
rack was valued at $200. Theft of
anything worth more than $400 is
treated as a felony. Police Chief
Curt Pritchard said both racks were
stolen the first weekend in January.
Benton and Bowers were each
charged witl. four counts of break
ing and entering and one count of
breaking and entering larceny in
(See POLICE, Page 2-A)
staw photo rr douc iutth
JIMMY TODD or the Ocean Isle Beach Police Department
stands next to the Beacon newspaper rack found last Friday
near the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. Authorities charged
three local teenagers with stealing the rack.