Health Board Proposals Would Make County, Public Buildings Smoke-Free
BY ERIC CARLSON and bars throughout the county's unincorporated areas. "You have before you the fruits of their labors," no-smoking rules would be enforced against visitors to
Smoking would be prohibited or restricted inside Health board Chairman Skip Davis and members Rhodes said in presenting the proposed regulations. He the complex. Davis said a major focus of the proposed
all public buildings in Brunswick County?or just Don Warren and Dr. Harry Johnson dissented in the said the county-wide policy is "98-percent similar" to ban would be to control tobacco use in the waiting ar
within the county government complex?if the board sccond vote. Warren is also chairman of the county one adopted in New Hanover County. cas outside the county courtrooms, where "people arc
of commissioners adopts one of two new laws en- commissioners, suggesting that the idea of county- The rules governing the Brunswick County com- smoking cigarettes with both hands."
dorsed by the board of health Monday night. wide smoking controls is likely to meet some opposi- plcx would also prohibit smoking within 25 feet of a Rhodes said Tuesday that department heads would
The health board voted unanimously to ask the tion on the board that will ultimately decide whether to building's main door or within 15 feet of an auxiliary be responsible for enforcing the rules within their
commissioners for approval of a smoking ban "within approve them. entrance. "No Smoking" signs would be required in all buildings. He said the departments of health and social
all enclosed areas of public buildings and vehicles" The two anti-smoking proposals were drafted by a areas regulated by the policy. services have encountered few problems with volun
owncd, maintained or managed by Brunswick County. 15-member committee of county employees chaired Any employee who violated the regulations would tary compliance since "No Smoking" signs were in
And in a split vote, members asked the commis- by Health Director Michael Rhodes. The group was face disciplinary action under the county personnel stalled in 1986. However, he said some stricter cn
sioncrs to consider extending the regulation of public originally formed to draft a smoking policy for gov- policy. "Repeated violations will lead to warnings and forccmcnt options might need to be added for other ar
smoking to retail stores, service lines, elevators, public emment offices. But after its first meeting, the com- eventual termination," the proposed rules say. eas of the complex.
rcstrooms, polling places and portions of restaurants miltec decided to expand its efforts county-wide. However, the regulations do not outline how the (See SMOKING, Page 2-A)
4 iF l .l
* ut A'32':
Thirty-First Year, Number 21 ?.????.hummock*?* Shallotte, North Carolina, Thursday, April 15, 1993 504 Per Copy 42 Pages, 3 Sections, 1 Insert
UPSET BY VOTE AGAINST PRISON
Member Blasts Development
Board For Not Attracting Jobs
BY ERIC CARLSON "I'm angry," Myric said in an interview Tuesday.
A obviously frustrated and angry member of the "We're talking about throwing away S179,()00 of tax
Brunswick County Resources Development Commis- payers' money for nothing. We would do better by using
sion criticized the group this week for "doing nothing" that money to hire people at minimum wage than by
to address the county's unemployment problem and having someone sitting up there with a brand-new car
charged lhat RDC Exec- making a S50,0(X) salary."
utivc Director Thomas <<v ? i ? . The budget request ap
Monks has been ineffective lOll WOlllCl flCVCt KtlOW It WdS proved Monday night calls
and overpaid. r tttv, / i . ?. . ? .i ? for an increase in Monks'
At the RDC's regular rl?K&...\\? COUICI pilt it Olit 111 trlB salary from S49.010 to
meeting Monday night, (Zrppn Swnmn nnfl hflVP tllP S50.935. The new car
member Leslie Myric said OWUmfJ uriu riUVt ine would rcp|acc a
he could not vote for the alUoators oUard it." year-oW "high-mileage"
commissions proposed o " ^ vehicle. Monks said.
budget, which includes rais- Dnr Mr?mhf*r I pclip Mvrip Myric's anger was ini
es for Monks and his assis- 1VJ~ "??^iviync Ua,ly provokcd by m cntry
tant, additional hours for a On the idea OI building a prison in in the minutes of the
part-time employee and a Brunswick County RDC's March meeting. It
new car. recorded a unanimous dc
Myrie accused the board cision to discontinue cf
of wasting money by "studying, forming committees forts to attract a state correctional facility to Brunswick
and creating by-laws instead of attracting jobs." He criti- County.
cizcd proposals to create and distribute an RDC ncwslct- Myrie had proposed the idea earlier this year, saying a
ter and to draft a "mission statement" to guide the com- prison would bring 150 to 350 new jobs to Brunswick
mission's activities. County. He said he had been ill and unable to attend the
"Is this why we can't attract industry to Brunswick meeting at which the vote was taken.
County?" Myrie asked the board. "Because we don't Insisting lhat a state prison would be good for the lo
have a mission statement? Because wc don't know the cal economy, Myrie said he had heard "unanimous sup
bylaws? The creation of this commission is its mission port" for the idea from the sheriff's department and scv
statement?to solicit industry to bring down uncmploy- eral area police chiefs. He said he had contacted the
mcnt. N.C. Department of Corrections and learned that the
Myrie suggested that the RDC would be "trying to starting annual salary for corrections officers was
make fools of the new commissioners" by asking for in- SI8,000.
creases in its budget without attracting new jobs to the "We're not even paying our deputy sheriffs that
county. (See DEVELOPMENT, Pane 2-A)
STAFF rHOTO BY SUSAN USHEA
Snuggling In The Sun
Jenna Bowen found a good place to snuggle in her grandmother Ida Morgan's lap, during early morn
ing service Sunday conducted by Shallotte Presbyterian Church on the strand at Ocean Isle Beach.
The family is from I^enoir. The Rev. lister Dottier (background), pastor, presented the Easter message
to a large crowd. The services resume Memorial Day weekend and continue through Ixibor Day week
end, starting with coffee and doughnuts at 7:30 a.m. and worship at 8:30 a.m. Warm, sunny skies
boosted attendance to the largest yet at all area beachfront services.
Inside Health Board, Two Towns
Birthdays. ***??? Endorse Environmental Plan
Business News 13-14C BY LYNN CARLSON of Sunset Bcach and Calabash, were
Calendar of Events 6A The Brunswick County Board of hired to determine the need for a
Church News 5B Health on Monday unanimously en- central sewer system; they have rcc
Classified 1-12C dorsed the proposal lor a combined ommended for several months that a
Po t Docket | pp central sewer and stormwater runoff combination of central sewer and
. B ' management system for southwest stormwater runoff systems would be
Crime Keport oA Brunswick County. needed to clean up area shellfish wa
Fishing 8B Ironically, the board said its ac- ters.
Golf 11B tion came after reviewing data sub- The Sunset Beach Taxpayers'
Obituaries 5B mined by Powell Associates and the Association has accused Powell
Opinion 4-5 A Sunset Bcach Taxpayers Asso- Associates of using inaccurate and
People In The News... .9A ciation, who disagree radically on incomplete data. The taxpayers
Plant Doctor IB 1110 source ^ answer to, the claim there is no evidence that septic
? \ q i to area's pollution problems. tanks arc causing local pollution and
bports..... V-lztJ Powell Associates, consulting en- suggest that a stormwater runoff
Television 6-7B gineers representing the town boards (See SEWER, Page 2-A)
State Investigates Holden Rental Agencies
BY DOUG RUTTER thai a unit can accommodate eight people when they
Seven Holden Beach real estate agencies accused of know it should only sleep six. He sent letters to the scv
allowing loo many vacationers in rental houses are being en firms March 31 asking for a response.
investigated by the state. In the meantime, the state is conducting its own in
The N.C. Real Estate Commission opened the investi- vcstigalion to determine if the statistics compiled by the
gation approximately two weeks ago after receiving a wastewater management committee are accurate.
letter front town commissioner Sid Swarts, according to Swarts chaired the committee, which presented sever
a state attorney. al proposals to the town commission aimed at control
"We are just beginning this inquiry," Blackwcl! ling the abuse of scplic systems. Each proposal has been
Brogden, deputy legal counsel with the real estate com- rejected by the town board.
mission, said Tuesday. If the real estate commission verifies the figures.
The state is looking into charges that a large number Brogden said the typical response would be to ask the
of Holden Beach homes rented to visitors are advertised real estate companies to voluntarily comply with the law
as having room for more people than their septic sys- and change the advertisements.
terns were designed to accommodate. The state investigation began following a Feb. 16 let
Under investigation are Holden Beach Rental ter from Swarts to the real estate commission. Sent with
Services, Brunswickland Realty, Alan Holden Realty, the letter was a copy of the committee's findings on the
Hobbs Realty, Sand Peddler Realty, Coastal advertising of rental units.
Development & Realty and Craig Really. Town commissioners met behind closed with rcpre
A recent study conducted by Holden Beach's waste- sentatives of several of ihe rental agencies last week to
water management committee found thai 517 out of 764 discuss Swarts' letter, which was written on town sta
uniLs listed in 1993 rental brochures claim more sleeping uonery.
capacity than their scplic systems can handle. Following the closed session. Mayor Wally Auslcy
Brogden said it is illegal for rental agents to advertise (Set HOLDEN, Page 2-A)
Board's Vote Violates Open Meetings Law
BY ERIC CARLSON written ballot. If a public body dccidcs to vote by writ
The Resources Development Commission violated ten ballot, each member of the body so voting shall sign
the North Carolina Open Meetings Law Monday^ night his or her ballot; and the minutes of the public body
by using a secret ballot to conduct a vote that should shall show the vote of each member voting."
have been made in public. t The written ballots cast by the RDC Monday night
Informed of the mistake Tuesday, RDC Executive were not signed by the commissioners.
Director Tom Monks said he would inform members Charles Murray of the N.C. Attorney General's office
that the vote will have to be re-taken at the commis- in Raleigh said Tuesday he could not give an opinion on
sion's next meeting. a specific case that his office might later be called upon
During the board's annual selection of officers to prosecute. However, he said the open meetings law is
Monday, members Randy Robinson and John Ramsey "quite clear" on the question of secret balloting.
were nominated to serve as vice chairman. "Generally speaking, a vote by a public body is sup
At Monks suggestion, commissioners voted in secret posed to be on record," Murray said.
by writing their selections on torn strips of yellow legal Monks said Tuesday that he was "not aware of that
paper. The director read the ballots and determined that and apparently nobody else on the board was either." He
the vote was tied at four votes each. said he had been allowed to take such votes while work
Then Monks counted the members and realized that ing for boards in other states. He said he asked for the
nine commissioners were present. Leslie Myrie had not secret vote because the nominees were present at the
turned in a ballot, saying he felt the vote should be con- meeting.
ducted in public. He cast the deciding vote for Ramsey "Everybody on the board is friends with each other,"
out loud. Monks said. "I just wanted to give them an opportunity
According to article 143-318.13(b) of the N.C. Open to save face. If we acted improperly, I'll put it on the
Meetings Law, "a public body may not vote by secret or agenda for our next meeting and we'll do it over again."
Sunset Taxpayers Seek Voting
Districts For Town Council Seats
BY LYNN CARLSON cess would require an amendment
The Sunset Beach Taxpayers "T7j#? DdV*! of the town charter.
Association has endorsed the idea * * SBTA members heard reports on
of establishing at least two voting , , , a number of proposals they have
districts in the town and has autho- tflC llOH S SrlClfC opposed, including establishment
rized its board to pay for legal as- of a central sewer system to serve
sisiancc to help accomplish that of the tax bill Sunset Beach and Calabash, re
goal. J ' placement of the island's pontoon
"I am at every town council ? ? bridge, and the development of
meeting and 1 can assure you that OUt HQS YIO Bird Island.
island voters have no representa- Sewer System
tion," SBTA President Clete Wald- YCDVeSCYltCLtiOYl " SBTA Treasurer Minnie Hunt
miller told 72 of the 758-member ' ' reported on the sewer proposal in
group attending its Easter weekend Clete Waldmiller l^c a^)Sencc J?hn Watts, the SB- i
meeting Saturday. TA's representative on the town's
"The council votes 5-0 on every Citizens Advisory Committee on
issue," Waldmiller said. "There arc members arc out-of-town property wastewater.
no checks and balances in this sys- owners not eligible to vote in the Hunt called the issue a "moving
tern, and this will continue as long town. target" and accused Powell
as the council is elected at large. Waldmiller said the SBTA board Associates engineers, who rcpre
The island pays the lion's share of favors a system similar to Cala- sent the two towns, of basing their
the tax bill, but has no representa- bash's, in which two commission- arguments on "inaccurate and in
lion." ers are chosen from the smaller complete data."
Five council members and the District 1, five from District 2, and Hunt said there is "no conclu
mayor are currently elected at the mayor, at large. 'They have sivc evidence that septic tanks arc
large. Mainland voters greatly out- discussions, checks and balances, polluting our environment" and
number island voters, as most is- Not every motion goes through blamed area water quality prob
land homes belong to out-of-town unanimously." lems on stormwater runoff.
property owners. Most SBTA Any change in the elections pio- (See SBTA, Page 2-A)