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Twenty-eighth Year, Number 11 , North Carolina, Thursday, January 25, 1990 25c Per Copy 34 Pages, 3 Sections
STAfF mono BY DOUG KUTTt
SHELLFiSHERMEN depart the docks in v'arnamiown Tuesday morning, when a section oj
iMcknood Folly River was opened to the harvest of oysters and clams.
Local Sheilfishermen Reunite
As River Opens To Harvesting
BY DOUG RUTTER
It was like a reunion at the docks in Varnamtown
Tuesday morning as area shcllfishcrmcn who hadn't
gathered oysters or clams in Lockwood Folly River
for three months exchanged greetings and wished
each other the best.
A scction of the river reopened to the harvesting
of shellfish at sunrise Tuesday, renewing hope in the
local fishing community that the Lockwood Folly
still has something to offer in the midst of one of the
worst iOCoi oyster seasons in years.
"I think it's about time," Ernie Galloway of
Varnamtown said Tuesday, as he prepared to go into
the river with his wife and two sons. "There's prcuy
good oysters and clams out there. But I don't think
with the amount of people it's going to last very
There was a steady flow of traffic at the Var
namtown boat docks Tuesday morning, including
people who normally work in Shallottc River or else
where. As the tide went out, skiffs carrying three or
four people apiece headed south to the flats. By mid
afternoon, however, most of those skiffs had returned
to the docks, carrying disappointed fishermen with
The lower portion of the river, downstream of an
area known as Genoes Point on the river's west bank,
was temporarily reopened to harvesting. All river
waters upstream of that point remain closed, along
with a section of Davis Creek and the Intracoastal
Waterway east of Lockwood Folly.
In another proclamation, effective at sunrise
Wednesday, the state extended -by three seconds lon
gitude-the area in the lower river open to harvest.
Before Tuesday, the lower portion of the river
had been open to shellfishing only five days since
Gy.-tici reason u|iciicu in Gcio'ocr. Aii ot the nver was
closed to shellfish harvesting Oct. 23 due to unsafe
levels of coliform bacteria, an indicator of pollution.
Michael Leonard of Shell Point said Tuesday
morning he was glad lo sec a portion of Lockwood
Folly open again, but he doesn't think it should have
been closed in the first place.
"I think it's bad to close any of these rivers," he
said. "It's just a ridiculous mess."
Leonard said Ik hoped to coiicct enough shell
fish to cover his electric bill, but seafood dealers re
ported small harvests Tuesday afternoon.
Nicky Varnam at Garland's Fresh Seafood said
oysters and clams were scarce. "There ain't too much
down there," he said. "They got anywhere from two
bushels to six bushels per boat."
(See RIVER, Page 2-A)
EASLEY. REDWINE FILE
Boiling Spring Lakes Police Chief
Enters Democratic Race For Sheriff
BY RAHN ADAMS
With less than two weeks remain
ing in the Tiling period, the race for
Brunswick County sheriff heated up
this week, as Boiling Spring Lakes
Police Chief J.R. "Jim" Vaughan
filed to run against incumbent Sher
iff John C. Davis in the May 8
According to the Brunswick
County Board of Elections office,
Vaughan was one of four candidates
to file here for public office be
tween Jan. 17 and 23. The five
week Tiling period ends at noon
Vaughan, of Route 6, Southpoit,
has served as the town's head law
enforcement officer for the past five
years. "You're always swimming
upstream when you face an incum
bent," the Roanoke Rapids native
said Tuesday of challenging Davis.
"I just feel people have a right to a
Davis is seeking his sccond full
term as sheriff. He was appointed to
the post in 1983, following the res
ignation of former Sheriff Herman
Strong. Republican candidates for
sheriff include ShalloUe Alderman
David L. Gause and Long Beach
Police Officer William "Bill" Sisk.
In other county races, incumbent
District 5 County Commissioner
Grace Beasley, a Democrat, will see
opposition in May. Mike Holmes,
40, of Leland, filed Monday for the
Democratic commissioner race. A
political newcomer. Holmes has
been employed by Southern Bell for
(See POLICE, Page 2-A)
Petition Seeks To Undo
BY SUSAN USHER
Sixteen months after Vamam
town became a town, some of its
residents arc circulating a petition in
an effort to return the community to
its previous status.
Former alderman Marion Davis
brought the petition to the town
board's attention last Thursday
night, suggesting the board needed
"to look into it as quickly as possi
Saying that he had seen the peti
tion and that it had more than 100
signatures on it, he continued, "You
need to find out what's wrong and
why people are signing it." Davis
said he understood rumors were cir
culating in town that he was in
volved in the petition drive. "I did
not and have not had anything to do
with it," he continued.
Rudolph (Rudy) Simmons of
Riverside, one of the residents who
is involved in the effort to have the
town unincorporated, acknowledged
Tuesday that the petition is being
circulated. But he added, "I'd rather
not comment on it at this time."
Simmons was one of the oppo
nents of incorporation in 1988,
when residents of the closcknit fish
ing village on Lockwood Folly
River petitioned Rep. E. David Red
wine to introduce local legislation
to allow a referendum on incorpora
The bill passed. When the icfcr*
endum was held Sept 20, 177 of the
town's 1 8 1 registered voters turned
out. The measure passed, 102 for,
A copy of the petition and its ex
act wording was not available to
The Brunswick Beacon this week.
However, according to the Bruns
wick County Board of Elections,
those seeking unincorporation of
the town couia ask for one of two
things in the petition: 1) That their
representative introduce legislation
to unincorporate the town during
the upcoming short session; or 2)
That the state legislature provide for
a referendum of town residents to
decide the question.
Rep. E. David Rcdwinc was on
"We'll get a copy of it, go over it and
see what Mr. Redwine does with it"
? Judy Galloway
vacation and not available for com
ment However, in the past, follow
ing the slate legislature's operating
rules, he and other legislators have
avoided introducing issues of a po
tentially controversial nature during
the short session.
Mayor Judy Galloway said last
Thursday night that she doesn't un
derstand why the town boa?d of al
dermen hasn't been contacted by
those circulating the petition.
"No one's come to us and said
anything. I don't understand why
they would go behind our backs and
do this, why they wouldn't come to
us," she said to an audience of ap
proximately 15 residents gathered at
Gospel Center Baptist Church.
Until the town receives a copy of
the petition, she said, the town
board can do little in response to it.
When it is formally notified of the
effort to unincorporate Varnam
town, she said, the petition will be
checked to make sure all those sign
ing it arc residents of the town and
are registered to vote. "We'll get a
copy of it, go over it and sec what
Mr. Redwine does with it," she said.
"That's all we can do."
As of last Wednesday the town
had 219 registered voters.
Warming to the topic of incorpo
ration, Alderman Ada McDonald
reminded those present that the
town has "moved forward" since
the incorporation vote, holding a
successful Founder's Day celebra
tion and seeing a higher percentage
of voter turnout for its municipal
elections in November than most
other towns in the county. "It shows
ihe neonlp have an interest,"
Mrs. McDonald also pointed out
the revenues coming into the town
that were going to other communi
ties in the past, and noted the town
expccts to rcccivc approximately
$50,000 this year. Steps have been
taken to secure land for a town hall,
she continued, and the town is
working to respond to needs and
concerns expressed by its citizens.
' I don't see it as an issue now,"
she said of the petition effort. "1
think they (town residents) trust us
and have confidence that they can
come to us."
After the hard work that went
into getting the town established,
she said, "I couldn't take action to
damage this town."
Rcsponscd the mayor, "Well
With Aldermen Roger Robinson
and Ennis Swain absent, the board
took no action regarding street nam
ing following a brief public hearing.
Alderman McDonald said the
board is still seeking suggestions for
several street names, including
names for portions of Lancaster
Drive that arc inside the town lim
The street follows a circuitious
path through Riverside I into
Riverside II subdivision, with part
of the street outside the Varnam
town municipal boundaries. This
creates a duplication of street names
inside and outside the town. While
the state uses road numbers, the
county uses street names as well.
Alderman McDonald said renaming
portions of Lancaster would also
make it easier for local fire and res
cue units to respond to calls.
In other street-related business,
Mel Kitchens recommended yet an
other alternative namp. for Cham
pion Drive ? White Sand Lane.
In other business, the board:
? Voted to ask the Local Govern
ment Commission to allow the town
(See PETITION, Page 2-A)
Sting Uncovers First
BY RAHN ADAMS
A South Carolina man last week became the first
accused drug dealer to be billed in Brunswick County
Tor not paying a new tax on controlled substances, ac
cording to a county drug agent.
Brunswick County Narcotics Squad Officer Mike
Speck said Wayne Allen Phillips, 52, 6f Route 1,
North Myrtle Beach, S.C., was served with an unpaid
tax notice Friday, the day after Phillips was arrested
on drug trafficking charges in Calabash.
Phillips was charged with trafficking by transporta
tion and trafficking by possession of more than 28
grams of methamphetamine, a crystalline substance
commonly known as "speed" or "crank," Speck not
The charges stemmed from an undercover drug buy
around 4:30 p.m. last Thursday outside the Calabash
Post Office. Speck said the arrest was the culmination
of a "short-term" undercover operation involving the
sheriff's department. Ocean Isle Beach Police, the
SBI and federal Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms
Friday, Horry County, S.C., authorities searched
Phillips' North Myrtle Beach residence and seized six
pounds of methamphetamine, Speck added.
The officer said Monday that additional charges
against Phillips and other arrests in the case were
pending here. He explained that authorities believe
Phillips had a contact in Brunswick County and had
not personally sold drugs here until last Thursday.
Phillips was being held in the Brunswick County
Jail Monday under a $100,000 bond. Speck said the
suspect also was awaiting a visit Monday from a state
revenue official concerning approximately $22,000
Phillips now owes in controlled substance taxes.
"I asked him, 'Do you have a tax stamp?,' and he
said, 'No,'" Speck commented Monday. "As of this
(See STING, Page 2-A)
On 91 1 -Related Telephone Tax
BY RAHN ADAMS
While county officials so far have heard only positive
remarks from local municipal boards, telephone sub
scribers throughout Brunswick County will have a
chance next week to comment on a proposed 50-cent
monthly surcharge to pay for a countywide 911 emer
gency telephone system.
The public hearing will be he'd Monday at 7 p.m., in
the Public Assembly Building, Bolivia, by the
Brunswick County Board of Commissioners and repre
sentatives from a majority of the county's 17 municipal
to ii lien fii vuuwty NiuTiu^vr Dsvid Clegg,
the following towns have notified him that they plan to
participate in the joint hearing: Shallotte, Holden
Beach, Ocean Isle Beach, Sunset Beach, Calabash,
Varnamtown, Belville, Caswell Beach, Yaupon Beach,
Sandy Creek, Leland, Long Beaclfend Southport.
As of Monday, the town boards of Navassa, Bald
Head Island, Bolivia and Boiling Spring Lakes had not
contacted Clegg about attending Monday's session.
However, he indicated that a surcharge ordinance
passed by county commissioners would cover the entire
county, including towns that do not participate in the
Though the main purpose of the session is to clear
the way for the surcharge, Clegg and county Emergency
Management Coordinator Cecil Logan noted that tele
phone company representatives also will be present to
explain how 911 works and to answer individuals'
questions about the sophisticated system. Brunswick
County is served by Atlantic Telephone Membership
Corporation and Southern Bell.
? "Not a word." replied Clegg, when asked Monday if
any opposition to the surcharge has been voiced. "All
I'm getting is 'go, go, go.'"
Logan echoed the county manager's remarks. "All
I've heard are positive comments from everybody I've
talked to," Logan said. "You can't even go buy a (soft
drink) for 50 cents any more, and we'll be paying for a
whole 911 system" with the proposed 50-cent per sub
scriber monthly charge.
"People ;nair.!y want to know why (the 911 system)
isn't already in place," the coordinator said.
Total installation cost of 911 is $243,840 and will be
due when the system is operational. On-going monthly
maintenance costs will amount to $13,956. Logan told
commissioners in November (hat the 50-cent surcharge
could recoup the installation costs in 18 months and
then continue to cover the monthly maintenance costs.
Under state law, the surcharge cannot be levied until
120 days after the county ordinance is adopted. If com
missioners adopt the ordinance at their February meet
ing, the 50-cent tariff could be added to local bills be
ginning in June.
According to a letter of intent signed by commission
ers in Decemher. the county's 911 system will go into
operation by January 1992. A period of between 18
months and two years is needed for Southern Bell to
create a local 911 data base, which includes listings of
local telephone subscribers, their locations, and the po
lice, fire and rescue agencies that would respond to
emergencies at individual locations.
With an enhanced 911 system, a caller can obtain
help simply by dialing the three-digit number. No ver
bal communication w??h a telecom municator is neces
sary, in the event that the caller is unable to speak.
Seconds after the telephone connection is made at a 911
"public safety answering point" (PSAP), the pro
grammed information on the caller's location flash onto
the telecommunicator's computer terminal.
The letter of intent lists "Brunswick County EMS" in
Supply as the local system's primary PSAP location.
Plans are eventually to move the county emergency
management office to the old Agricultural Extension
Service/Brunswick Community College building on
U.S. 17 at Supply. Backup PSAP locations are proposed
for the Southport and Long Beach police departments.
Logan explained that Southport and Long Beach
agreed to house PSAPs, because they wish to continue
dispatching their own emergency calls. "The other areas
in the county don't have established dispatching sys
tems," he said.
The coordinator added that the county's volunteer
fire departments and rescue squads also will be able to
continue dispatching for themselves if they so choose,
since the 911 system will allow calls to be rerouted
from the 911 communications center to the individual
departments. Choices between the two options will be
left up to the departments, he said.
"The system can be made to accommodate any one
or all of the departments," Logan commented.
However, he noted that true centralized dispatching
from the 911 communications center would take best
advantage of 9U's benefits: quicker communications
and shorter response times to emergencies.
While the data base is being installed, the county
planning department continues to work on road-naming
and house-numbering projects ? both of which are nec
essary so that 911 telecommunicators can dispatch the
proper departments to the exact location of an emergen
In a brief report to the Brunswick County Planning
Board last week, planner Tom Birmingham estimated
that new road signs ? an important part of the road
naming project ? will cost the county at least SI 50,000.
According to Clegg, planning officials will briefly
update commissioners on the road-naming project at a
work session today (Thursday) at 6:30 p.m., in the
Public Assembly Building. The board is expected to set
public hearing dates on new road names.
Although he noted that preparation work for 911 is a
"massive undertaking" for the county, Clegg stated,
"The county has made a two-year commitment, and I
fully expect it to be met."
Commissioners went on record in support of 911 as
far back as May 1987. The board also allocated
$250,000 for the system in both the 1988-89 and 1989
90 county budgets.