North Carolina Newspapers

    Volume °
City
EMILY WEAVER
Editor
While Clovelind County Schools offi-
cials and county commissioners nerv-
ously await state approval of a budget ,
likely spiked with cuts in funding, the
City of Kings Mountain seems to be sit-
ting secure. ..for now.
The latest whisper of an idea from
Governor Bev Perdue’s office to let the
counties operate without a healthy fund
balance (savings account), sent counties
and commissioners stirring across the
state.
County Manager David Dear and
county commissioners called local state
legislators to ask for their help in keeping
the state’s hands out of their pockets. The
Governor’s office presented a chart of
2009-10 county fund balances to House
and Senate Appropriations chairs to illus-
trate that counties have sufficient reserves
on hand to help with some of the state’s
financial responsibilities, according to
David Thompson, executive director of
the North Carolina Association of County
Commissioners.
“On the chart, the Governor’s office
indicates that an 8 percent fund balance
level is the statutory set-aside required for
county fund balances.”
County officials argue that 8 percent is
the bare minimum they must maintain
without receiving scolding letters from
the Local Government Commission.
Cleveland County operates with a fund
balance of about 18 percent, according to
Dear. Eight percent would equate to about
$6.5 million. A 10 percent cut in county
funding (from the state) would equate to
a little more than $8 million.
If North Carolina’s 100 counties are
required to operate with a fund balance of
only 8 percent, the extra money counties
have saved could equate to nearly $1.2
billion in money for the state, which is
battling a $2.4 billion budget deficit.
“Ipersonally believe the state needs to
be more fiscally responsible than to take
money from the counties who are fiscally
responsible, who have bigger fund bal-
ances and have larger than the eight per-
cent allowed,” county commissioner
Ronnie Hawkins said.
See CITY, 7A -
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MAUNEY REMORLAL
“LIBRARY
100 § FLEDAONT OVE a084- 2450
KINGS . MOUNTAIN NC
Thursday.
Traffic was backed up along I-
85 through Kings Mountain, last
week, as DOT crews worked on
resurfacing the roadway, heading
south from mile marker 8 to the
work is scheduled to continue
Monday-Friday 7 a.m.-4'p:m, until’
the projects complete.
The North Carolina Depart-
ment of Transportation was advis-
pTHKC 003
ap 39
ry TET EEE 5
A view from the overhead bridge on Canterbury Rd. showed traffic backed
up along 1-85 southbound heading towards Kings Mountain from Gastonia
Construction on I-85
increases traffic in KM
state line in South Carolina. Road- =
wad
EMILY WEAVER/HERALD
ing travelers to take U.S. 74 as an
alternate route. At times through-
out the day on Thursday, traffic
was backed up as far north as the
Gastonia exits.
Traffic was also backing up in
the city with a Steady stream of
cars flowing down King and Gold
streets and Battleground Avenue
toward Grover. :
City cleans up after storms
gu ELIZABETH STEWART |
lib.kmherald@gmail.com
Fast-moving storms pounded the
Kings Mountain area Saturday.
Golfball-size hail, lightning, strong
wind and rain left three areas of town
in the dark for a period of 1-6 hours as
city crews worked feverishly from 6
p.m. Saturday until 9:30 a.m. Sunday
morning—15.5 hours-repairing the
damage.
Hardest hit by the storm was the
city's Delivery 3, Gaston Street Sub-
station, which serves four circuits.
Mayor Rick Murphrey said the
Lackey circuit had no outages but the
Meadowbrook circuit, which serves
electricity to West Gold Street and
downtown Kings Mountain, was out
from 5:50 p.m. until 11:59 p.m., a total
of 6 hours and 9 minutes. Linwood
circuit was out from 5:51 p.m. until
10:08 p.m., a total of 4 hours, 17 min-
utes, and the KM Hospital circuit was
out from 9 p.m. until 10:06 p.m., a
See STORMS, 6A
I NC mpm.
! ‘Moon Over the Mountain
6A Goes Vegas’ draws
record turnout.
INSU
704.739.3611
106 East Mountain Street
Kings Mountain, NC
em AY
WARLICK ano HAMRICK
www. KMinsure.com
We can save you money!
‘A sad day
education’
ge ELIZABETH STEWART
lib.kmherald@gmail.com
“A sad day for education
in Cleveland County and
North Carolina,” was the’
sentiment ~ expressed by
Board of Education Chair-
man Tommy Green Monday
night as he called for a vote
on a risk policy for the or-
'derly procedure for the ré-
duction of licensed,
professional employees of
the school system.
Green projects that it will
take years and decades to re-
cover from cuts expected to
be made in the classrooms
and in reduction of employ-
ees which he hopes can be
minimized with retirements
and through attrition.
Shearra Miller, who has
served on the board of edu-
cation 20 years, and Green,
who has served 26 plus:
years, said it was the first
time in their tenure they had
ever seen the implementa-
tion of a risk policy remirsd
by law.
With ‘mixed emotions,
Miller of Kings Mountain
made the motion to enact the
policy “with regret.” Other
board members expressed
the same sentiment.
“I will be surprised if we
don’t have to make some
cuts,” said Green but he is
optimistic that some teach-
ing jobs can survive with at-
trition and retirements. He
said assistant teachers may
not be so lucky.
A total of 41 teachers and
numerous other staff mem-
bers, including a significant
number of assistant teachers
and assistant principals,
could lose their jobs as state
lawmakers chip away at a
projected $2.4 billion budget
shortfall.
School officials are ex-
pecting significant cuts.
“We hated to pass the risk
policy but we had no choice,
we believe this is only a nec-
essary precaution at this
point until we find out the
final state budget,” said
Miller.
Both Chairman Green
and Miller told their fellow
board members that in this
struggling economy it could
be worse with the schools in
a waiting game with the
N.C. Legislature.
The board’s action gives
Supt. Bruce Boyles the au-
thority to proceed with ad- °
vance notification to those
faculty members whose jobs
could be in jeopardy.
Miller said that she re-
called on one occasion some
years ago that the state legis-
lature was late in adopting its
budget and the school sys-
tem, by law, had adopted its
budget by July 1 and then
had to amend it in later
months. “We are hoping that
See SCHOOLS, 7A
~ BBQ Cookoff
heating up
= KYRA ALEXANDER
kyra.kmherald@gmail.com
The line-up for the 15th
Annual Firehouse Bar-
beque Cook-off is heating
up as 54 teams, including
20 local teams, had signed
up to compete as of Mon-
day.
The Cook-Off will
begin on hf April 15th
at the walking track next to
the YMCA, on Cleveland
Ave., and finish up on Sat-
urday at 3 p.m. with an
awards ceremony. There
will be 10 different ven-
dors, some competing and
some just vending, selling
BBQ, BBQ Ribs, BBQ
sandwiches, funnel cakes,
See COOROPY, 7A
Farm camps open up world of farming to kids
Victoria Boulanger. left, and Connor Boulanger check out a miniature horse named “Flash” at Son Ridge
Farm. Holding Flash is Chrissy Roth.
There’s a new growing trend in
Kings Mountain and local kids have
the opportunity to sink their hands
into it — farm camps through the
county 4-H program.
In these hands-on camps, partici-
pants get a taste of farm life. In the
basic Farm Life 101 camp, they milk
goats, ride horses, try their hand at
blacksmithing, muck out stalls, and
* feed the animals (including giving
baby goats their bottles). They make
ice cream, cheese and butter from the
goat milk they gather. They get a les-
son in beekeeping, make salves and
lip balms from the beeswax, and
even make laundry detergent from
goat milk soap. :
The camps, now in their second
year, are offered at the Stumbo fam-
ily’s SonRidge Farm off of Wright
Road in Kings Mountain. During
~ spring breaks, an intermediate camp
will be offered at the farm to children
of Cleveland and Lincoln counties
April 18-22. Registration is open
through Friday, April 15. To register,
see your county 4-H agent.
Another intermediate “Reality”
farm camp will be held at the farm
for children of Gaston County April
Tae
Building Trust. Building Smiles
209 S. Battleground Ave., Kings Mountain ¢ 704.739.5411
www.alliancebanknc.com « memeer mic
25-29. ftenmediate camps are of-
fered to kids ages 12-15 or those that
have already attended basic camp.
Mary Ann Stumbo said that her
16-year-old daughter Allie has taken -
lead of the camps. It was her idea to
begin with and now others seem to
be catching on.
The Stumbos, who homeschool
their children, are used to having
young visitors at their farm. Families
near and far have ventured out to the
Wright Road ranch for years, enjoy-
ing petting 200s, farm tours and sum-
mer camps. Children have enjoyed
seeing the many animals — goats,
chickens, horses, a bunny, pot-bel-
lied pigs, llamas, alpacas and a
miniature horse named “Flash”.
At the petting zoo on Friday, chil-
dren cooed over the baby chicks,
See FARM CAMPS, 5A
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