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Vol. 106 No. 52 ©
Council still looking for FY audit
Thursday, December 29, 1994
The city manager has re-
leased additional information
on the use of cellular phones by
city department heads at request
of Ward 2 Commissioner Jim
Guyton requested informa-
tion on the use of the city-
owned phones during the regu-
lar October council meeting and
recently received copies of the
bills covering a five month's pe-
riod but excluding the July bill.
Guyton had also requested bills
for the 1993 year.
This week City Manager
Nance sent copies of the July
bill which covered 43 pages to
Guyton and each meinber of
Council. But in a memorandum,
Nance said that it was very time
consuming to copy the phone
bills. He said it required one
hour to xerox the bills.
"If some of the phone users
had not misused the phones it
would most likely have been a
eight or nine page bill instead of
Phone bills still concern councilman Guyton
minutes instead of an hour,’
Guyton has maintained that
city policy intends the phones
be used by department heads
who work in the field.
City Council voted recently
to give the manager the authori-
ty to assign the phones. After.
the controversy developed,
Nance said he has talked to de-
partment heads and may decide
to pull the plugs on the phones.
The city's audit for 1993- 94
is back from the N. C. Local
Commission in Raleigh and in
the office of City Auditor
City Manager Chuck Nance
said, however, that Keller and
his family spent Christmas in
the Holy Land and the auditor is
out of his office until December
"As soon as I receive the au-
dit I will get it to each member
of City Council for their review
at a special meeting in early
January," said Nance.
Nance said he realizes that
43 pages and that would have
taken a city employee about 15
See Bills, 7-A
Council members are anxious to
for new year
Kings Mountain area citizens
are getting ready to welcome
bright New Year 1995.
Private parties will be held on
A New Year's Eve dance is
not scheduled at American
Legion Post 155.
For many, New Year's Day
Sunday will be worship services
in church, a day of televised
football with a full diet of ma-
jor bowl games and parades.
Food fare on New Year's
Day for many will include the
throughout the new year. Local
grocers were stocking their
shelves this week with the tradi-
tional foods, readying for week-
Monday will be a holiday
for city offices, the post office,
financial institutions and the
Public Works Supt. Karl
Moss said that garbage collec-
tion will resume on regular
schedules next Thursday.
Moss said that the sanitation
crew will pick up Monday's
route on Tuesday and Tuesday's
regular route on Wednesday.
The normal schedule for
pickup is Monday and Thursday
and Tuesday and Friday.
Moss said that citizens wish-
ing fast service on removal of
. their Christmas trees should put
them on the curb in front of
Moss said that citizens have
been very cooperative.
Industrial plants closed the
full week of Christmas resume
operating schedules on Tuesday.
in KM December 29
The Red Cross bloodmobile
will return to Kings Mountain
for a holiday visit December 29.
Donors will be processed
from 1:30-6 p.m. at Grace
United Methodist Church fel-
Blood needs are critical at the
holiday season when tradition-
ally more wrecks occur and
people need life-saving blood.
receive the audit of the previous
Laborers with the Gaston Correctional Center, above, clear sewer right-of-ways for the City of Kings
Mountain on Phifer Road. The city is participating in a one-year model inmate labor contract with the
state waiving administrative costs and the city providing only transportation and $1 a day for each work-
er for a 40-hour week.
Inmates from Gaston prison
help KM right-of-way project
Eight inmates with the Gaston Correctional
Institute were busy clearing right-of-ways for city
sewer lines on Phifer Road at the high school
Inmate labor is new to this area and the City of
Kings Mountain is the first municipality in the
. Southern Piedmont to contract for inmate labor,
according to Allen Long, program administrator
of the Dallas facility.
"We must clear right-of-ways from Cansler
Street to Crocker Road and this is a big project
that we are delighted to have the extra labor," said
Karl Moss, the city's Superintendent of Public
Moss and Mayor Scott Neisler are coordinating
the project with the Gaston Correctional Institute.
The city signed a year's contract and will be billed
for $1 per day per person for the work, also
agreeing to transport the eight-member work
force from Dallas to Kings Mountain at 7 a.m.
Monday through Friday for a 40-hour per week
shift. iy 2
Joe Hamrick of the city staff is supervisor.
All members of the city public works staff
completed special training to work inmates be-
fore the program started December 1. Each city
supervisor carries a card as a designated agent of
the Division of Prisons.
The inmates on Tuesday's crew all volunteered
for the job.
"We like to work and today is a beautiful day to
be clearing land," said one of the young inmates.
Allen said that with increased crime the public
is demanding that more inmates work and the
program makes them highly visible to the public.
"This is a program that we hope more cities
like Kings Mountain will join," he said.
Allen said that he is meeting with the Town of
High Shoals on January 10 to present the program
to city leaders for consideration
The inmate labor program has been in exis-
tence in North Carolina for some time but mostly
in Eastern North Carolina with exception of one
or two towns in Western North Carolina.
City Manager Chuck Nance commended Moss
and Neisler for their leadership of the new ven-
ture and said it was a collaborative effort that
would pay off for Kings Mountain.
"We've got a long list for the workers to do and
it will really help us out," said Nance.
Christmas is the time of year when hearts turn to those who are
less fortunate and in need. Though Billy Bridges fits this category
himself, he and his grandparents, Helen and Clarence Barnett, feel
very fortunate and blessed and expressed their gratitude to the staff
of The Children's Hospital at Carolinas Medical Center for all they
have done for Billy with the donation of a brand new Radio Flyer
Wagons are "THE" mode of transportation for pediatric patients.
Some youngsters are still recovering from surgery or tired out from
treatments, but still want to get out of bed and play for a while. The
wagon 1s their gate-way to the playroom where toys and activities
await and illness is left behind. Getting the children up and out
helps them recover faster and keeps spirits high.
Billy was born in Lincolnton February 1, 1991 with Ellis Von
Crevell syndrome, which is usually deadly. He has six fingers on
cach hand, six toes on cach foot and a chest cavity so small it won't
A GIFT FROM THE HEART
Miracle boy Billy Bridges gives wagon to The Children's Hospital at CMC
permit the normal growth of such internal organs as his lungs and
liver, all symptoms of this rare disease. Billy wasn't expected to live
but a few months but, at the age of 4, Billy has already proved to be
a miracle child.
Just hours after birth Billy was transferred to the Neonatal
Intensive Care Unit at Carolinas Medical Center where he stayed
until January 1992. Since his first trip home Billy has made many
trips back to The Children's Hospital at Carolinas Medical Center
for continued treatment. He travels to the playroom or down the hall
in a similar wagon, when one is available. There are only four wag-
ons on the entire floor. With help from the Barnetts' neighbors. Joe
and Lib Spaugh. the wagon was assembled and delivered to The
Children's Hospital this week. Billy presented his gift, and a card, to
the nurses who have cared from him and the place he's known as a
second home for the past four years. Billy's donation is a true gift
from the heart that will keep on giving for years to come.
fiscal year's budget.
Bridges recalled that in previ-
ous years the audits were in the
hands of Council by October or
"We still do not have the au-
dit for 1993-94 and I think the
reason is becauSe we can not
get the right balance," says
Commissioner Jim Guyton.
But Nance disagreed, saying
that the hold-up was because
the Local Government
Commission made some correc-
He says he has personally re-
ceived no letter of recommen-
dations or correspondence from
the state treasurer's office which
has had the audit since
November 17. The treasury of-
fice sent a copy of an invoice
unofficially approving the con-
tents of the audit to the city on
Bridges said the invoice gave
approval for the city to pay the
auditor for his services.
"I didn't know that was a reg-
ular policy," she said.
City officials have been anx-
ious to receive a copy of the au-
dit so questions regarding the
city's financial condition can be
See Audit, 7-A
KM and Shelby hospitals
to discuss possible merger
The future of Kings Mountain
Hospital could be decided at
two meetings next week.
J. C. Bridges, chairman of
the hospital's board of trustees,
said the trustees are meeting
Wednesday, Jan 5, to hear rec-
ommendations from a consul-
tant for solving problems of the
strapped institution and again
on January 9 with members of
the Cleveland Memorial
Hospital board of trustees to
talk possible merger.
"Kings Mountain Hospital
has made progress this year dur-
ing its association with
Carolinas Medical Center as has
Cleveland Memorial," said
Bridges said the Kings
Mountain Hospital's current
bills are not up to date but that
arrangements to pay the bills
"We do have a big debt ser-
vice but so does neighboring
Cleveland Memorial, which is
also affiliated with Carolinas
By pe A.M dical,” said Bridges.
Memorial or another institution
could be on the table for consid-
eration in the near future.
Consultant Alex Scott of
Growth Activation of Atlanta,
Ga. is meeting with the local
board ‘at 5:15 p.m. next
Wednesday. One of his propos-
als, in all likelihood, according
to Bridges, could initiate pre-
liminary talks of a merger with
another hospital. The closest
county hospital is 13 miles
away in Shelby.
Scott's report will describe
the available forms of merger,
discuss criteria for acceptable
partners and list health care net-
works that fit the criteria, said
Jim Rose, chairman of the
Cleveland Memorial Hospital
board of trustees, contacted
Bridges several weeks ago
about the January 9 meeting
with his board.
Rose and Bridges said that
the two boards have a common
goal - to deliver better health
care to the Cleveland County
"Rose called the meeting and
we have agreed to meet with
him as soon as he sets the time
and place," said Bridges.
"We may talk about merger
and it may never come to the
table," he said.
Bridges said the consulting
firm is looking at the hospital's
current financial situation, its
record of overall service to the
community and its concern at
lack of doctor referral patients
to the hospital.
Flyer wagon he is riding to nurs
Kristen May and Susan Jeffers, B
at The Children's Hospital at Caroli
ridges said the local hospi-
tal's one-year contract with the
Charlotte hospital will expire in
That's only four months away
but Bridges said that the associ-
ation with the Charlotte hospital
has been beneficial to Kings
"They've helped us hire two
new doctors who will be com-
ing from Canada, one in July
and one in August, and
Carolinas Medical is helping us
stay afloat despite the shortage
Bridges said that the illness
of Dr. Joe Lee, popular Kings
Mountain medical doctor, may
necessitate the hospital keeping
the old McGill Clinic open
longer than it intended.
"The hospital planned to
close McGill Clinic December
31 because it has not been prof-
itable to keep it open but now
we feel we must continues to
have a physician in that office
to help out in the current medi-
cal shortage in the community,"
Dr. Lee, a partner with Dr.
Thomas Durham in Kings
Mountain Family Practice, re-
mains a patient at N. C. Baptist
Hospital in Winston-Salem.
"We're working to keep our
hospital open and I can say in
all honesty that we are in much
better shape financially now
than we were eight months
ago," said Bridges.
"The illness of Dr. Lee and
the exodus of doctors from our
See Hospital, 7-A
A along with his gift of the Radio
/g/ieht, Pedro Medina, Melinda Willis,
on will be used by pedintric patients