THE PERQUIMANS WEEKLY Volume 3*, No. 4 USPS 428-080 Hertford, Perquimans County, N.C., Thursday, Jan. 24, 1980 20 CENTS Winter produce Mrs. John White of White's fresh produce fame, is reaping the benefits from their winter garden. The produce stand is located on Edenton Road Street in Hertford. (Photo byNOELTODD-McLAUGHLIN) Insurance commissioner speaks here In a talk he described as "short but full of meat," North Carolina Insurance Com < naissioner John Ingram wtttnttdrwejibeft Of the Albemarle regional Planning and Development Commission last Thursday of the havoc special interests have played on the pocketbooks of North Carolinians. "As a result of bad legislation passed in 1977 and made worse in 1979, the people of this state have paid out $400 million (in excessive in surance rates) in just two years," said Ingram. As insurance commissioner, Ingram said he has saved North Carolinians "millions and millions" of dollars in insurance rate increases. But despite all that Ingram's of fice has done to make N.C. a "model" of insurance reform, much of what he has ac complished has been "un dermined" by the special interests. "They (specUt interests) - ?Md their Influence on the leadership of this state and our leadership has listened to them rather than listen to the needs and wishes of the people of North Carolina," said Ingram. "And unless this bad law that was passed by the General Assembly is changed, the people of this state will be faced with a mind-boggling (1 billion in unjustified insurance rate increases before the decade of the 80's is half over." Ingram offered insurance surcharge as an example of one of the unjustifiable in surance costs plaguing North Carolinians. In 1973, Ingram said that the only reason an insurance consumer could be sur charged was for a bad driving record. Since then, Ingram said incurttee companies have become discriminatory. "People have been sur charged because they were young, old, black, nicknamed 'Shorty', or drove a red car," said Ingram. Ingram noted that North Carolina Governor Jim Hunt had "finally" joined with his fight against surcharge. "If he (Hunt) had joined with me last spring, we would not have to go through a lawsuit," said Ingram. Better government is Ingram's answer to the poor legislation that has cost North Carolina residents billions of dollars in undue tax amounts and unfair insurance rates. "An eastern tobacco farmer told me that the way to change bad laws is to change the people who make bad laws. Together we can bring about the changes we need here in North Carolina to put (fwrenu&eat fcacltin the hands of the people rather than in the pockets of the special in terests," concluded Ingram. Following Ingram's speech, the ARPDC held a regular business session. Among items discussed it was noted that Aging Program Funds amounting to $3,600 had been appropriated for legal services for the elderly in the counties of Perquimans, Pasquotank, and Chowan. This money would pay the regular lawyer's fee of $45-$50 an hour for a session of group counciling in designated places where seniors gather. In another matter, Hertford Mayor Bill Cox was nominated to represent the 10 county region as a Joint Regional Forum member for a second year. The Joint an ad visory board to regional governments which consists of members appointed by the League of Municipalities and the Association of County Commissioners. John Ingram Addition will costa little extra The Perquimans County - School System will have to pay isome $7,500 more than had been anticipated for the ad dition to the county high school, apparently because of an oversight on the part of the architect. Schools superintendent Pat Harrell told the school board at a Monday morning meeting that the wiring of the ad ministrative area of the ad dition had not been included in the contract. The wiring had initially been deleted due to coat considerations, but was to have been put back in, Harrell said. He said that the om mission appeared to be an oversight on the part of the architect. In another matter, the board approved the acceptance of an *000 federal grant to finance a study of the role* and responsibilities of centrti in the school and federal contributions to be higher here than in other areas of the state. It was also noted that the school board has requested an additional $18,000 for the operation of school buses in the county during the remainder of the school year. The state had attempted to cut gasoline allocations of school systems across the state to 80 percent of last year's allotments. The Perquimans County School Board has joined other counties in informing the state that 80 percent just isn't unqigh. "They'll just have to find some more money in Raleigh somewhere," Harrell said. An energy audit report covering all county school buildings has been completed, and Harrell produced a thick manual of recommended improvements that resulted. The board has already gotten time ipwHtt on the cost of lowering ceilings at Central Gri ?av as 7XSS matter, Harrell told the board that school-owned gyms could no longer be heated for non- change in state school board school activities because of a policy. Coach may be replaced Perquimans High School head football coach Celvin Webster will apparently be replaced because of a per ceived lack of community support for the team. Webster said he had been told by schools superintendent Pat Harrell and principal William Byrum he would be replaced. Harrell, however, stated that no official action had been taken by the school board in replacing Webster "We've had conferences with the coaches," Harrell said, but would not comment further on what was discussed at the conferences. Harrell did say, though, that the wufWy situation had been discussed in an executive session at the school board meeting on Mondav But Webster said that as far aSheiscoswersedhisoustaris already final. "It's hard to understand," he sail "We've had some super crowds, we've made money. That's what support is ill about, ia't it?" By Us own standards, Webster's seven ytnrs >1 Perquimans High School have been a success. "I thought we were one of the better 2-A schools around." Webster said. "We played some much larger schools and beat 'em." Webster said that 22 of his former players had received grant-in-aids to (day football in college. Alio head coach in basketball and track, as well ? teacher, Webster said his other positions were not mentioned in the conference and appear to be intact. Still,, his anticipated removal as head coach of football stings a little. "I feel like it's a raw deal," Webster said. "It should make other people aware ... that a good job don't mean anything." Because the position is an appointment, Webster said there is probably no appeals process for him. He said he had "no idea" who his replacement would be. The school board will meet Friday morning in a special session following a tour erf Central Grammar and Perquimans Union Schools. Two more file Incumbent District I Commissioner Lester Simp son has filed for re-election, Joining other Democrats who announced their intentions last week. Simpson will be pitted against Lee Brabble, who has alrqpdy filed for his District I seat Register of Deeds Jeamw C. White has oot yH officially filed bat has indicated her intention to aeek re-election to that office. Charles Ward and Billy Pierce have filed for the two District II commissioners' seats, as has incumbent chairman Joe Novell. Janice Y. Boyce of ParkviOe Township has filed tor election to the Board of Education. The filing deadline is Feb. 4 at 12 uooo. Tri-County Grant application finally funded The Tri-County Career Center funding search got an unexpected boost last week when a previously denied (20,000 grant application was funded. The grant, awarded at the discretion of Governor James B. Hunt, Jr. by the Coastal Plains Regional Commission, will allow for more face to face contact in the search for funds, according to center director Kenneth Stallings. Without the grant, Stallings said, much of the correspondance with potential funding sources would have been by telephone or through the mail. "But if I can get eyeball to eyeball contact," Stallings said, "I think I can convince that man to help us here in North Carolina." The grant will also help draw more people in the development of curriculum fdr the center, he said. Teachers and administrators will be taken to career centers both in state and out of state, to experience the career center concept in reality. School officials and in fluential laymen of the community will also be asked to meet with potential funding sources, Stallings said. The proposed Tri-County Center would offer advanced vocational and academic courses to students of Gates, Chowan and Perquimans High Schools. The student would spend part of his day at the center, but would retain identity with his county's high school. The combination of resources and student in terests, would allow for an expanded curriculum otherwise impossible in the ? ?? sparsely populated counties. Phase I of the project was a study that determined a need for the center. Phase II, which will include developing a curriculum, as well as determining cost and securing funding sources, is presently underway. Stallings said the Coastal Resources Commission originally put the center's Phase II funding request in category II, that of projects worthy of funding but not of top priority. A spokesman for the commission promised that if extra money became available, the grant would be approved. The money did, apparently become available, as Stallings received a phone call last Wednesday from Joe Pell, senior assistant to the ( Continued on page 2) ? -a Youth council president held for embezzlement The president of the Perquimans County Youth Council has been arrested by the Hertford Police Depart ment and charged with em bezzling more than $400 from the council's savings account. Jamps Uroy Saupders, 18, of Rt. I, Belvidere has been arrested and charged with 12 counts of embezzlement of property by virtue of an office, according to Hertford Police Chief Marshall Merritt. Merritt said that on 12 different occassions, money had been taken from the youth council's savings account, usually in increments of some $20, but on Dec. 19, some $120 was removed from the ac count. The youth council is spon sored by the Economic Im provement Council and promotes community in volvement through various projects. Saunders was elected to serve a one year term as president of the council by its membership, according to EIC coordinator Grace Dizon. She said she discovered that money was missing from the council savings account when she got her most recent bank statement, which showed a balance of some $40. The account was supposed to have held more than $450, she said. Most of the money had been awarded to the local council by the state youth council in the form of a $320 mini-grant to pay for improvements to three community buildings located in the county. The rest of the money had been raised by the group to pay for attendance at func tions on the state level. Ms. Dizon said she became "physically ill" when she discovered the money missing. She said that Saunders had been an exemplary member of the club. "He is the one who kept the club going," she said. "I always thought of him as dependable... He seemed trustworthy to me." She also worried about the impact the incident might have on the youth council's image in the community. "I don't want people to feel the youth council can't be trusted," she said. "They are good kids." She said that the youth council would still have to complete improvements to the community buildings, or return the mini-grant monies to the state council. Road work Vernon Hintoo, (1), of Gates County, and Ken Dail of Perquimans County are patting down curbing ana guttering on a portion of toentoo Road Street in Hertford.