For and About
A Tree Top Publication
J. Bishop, Editor
December 4, 2013
The Locust City Council will hold their December meeting next Thursday, December 12, 2013 at 7:30 pm in the Joel Huneycutt Room in the Locust Government Center, Locust Town Center. I will post the Agenda later in the week.
Duke Energy has notified us they will be cutting off Power at the HWY 24-27 Locust substation for repairs to the electrical grid after the holidays. The date and time will posted later.
The City of Locust has a Twitter Account at https://twitter.com/LocustNC
LOCUST POLICE DEPARTMENT COMMUNITY NEWSLETTER
Letter from Stanfield Mayor Kevin Barbee to the voters
Mr. Rick Huggins Response to the above letter
This is in response to the letter sent out on Nov. 1 to a targeted few individuals and households in Stanfield prior to the municipal elections on Nov. 5.
The first few sections were of Mr. Barbee's history and achievements, nice. We all know his legendary membership at Loves Grove Methodist and his commanding chairmanship of the swim club, which now is in private hands. All these are the usual things one would broadcast to cast the shinning light on themselves. There was no claim on being able to, "walk on water", I mean this is not the U S Senate the candidate seeks but the mayor of a
small town that we all support and live.
I missed the section that recalls Mr. Barbee's time as town council member. He was a member that was instrumental in establishing the sewer debt that he now rails about. As well as being a part of the confrontation with the county over new water lines that were (are) owned by Stanfield, that they (the county) wanted. So, the hiring of attorneys to protect the town's assets, But to pander to the county Mr. Barbee paid a ransom in the means of meters and valves, purchased by the town costing over six figures. So, thus our good standing with the county, enough said. Maybe that's because just before the start of the water and sewer project in which Mr. Barbee who was utilities chairman, quit, yes that is correct, QUIT. I believe his reasoning for quitting was, "they wouldn't let me do my stuff ". The key here is, "MY". I'm sorry but when you sign up to be a publicly elected official, your job is to do the people's stuff", not yours or some agenda you carry.
I would have expected better of such a person who bragged of his accomplishments and chairmanships and leadership roles as to quit, just when the largest project in Stanfield's history was about to begin. But now, years later, to stop and disparage and throw rocks at the group as a whole, who did the best we could possibly do at the time, I, for one was totally surprised. Well, it was then the council asked Keith Austin (a local developer) to fill in, because we needed help with logistics. He did a fine job and I appreciate his efforts.
Of course, as mentioned before, we increased the sewer debt. The final phase of the debt funding was to run sewer to the upper section of Willow Creek subdivision. This was sorely needed. The reasons are self evident.
Now back to the debt, I can only describe as follows ... when one buys a new house or a new car most of us use credit, and when you start paying the amortization the amount is large, but over time it gets smaller from payments made. Same here. Now, you have to understand and realize we (the town) were just starting in the water and sewer business so there were glitches and short comings; also you need to understand the town was operating on a base tax rate of $00.30 not the $00.38 rate that is in place today. Yes, 30 cents and the establishing of utility rates were just taking hold as more customers were added and adjustments made. Hey, Mr. Barbee could have been there from the beginning with his expert leadership but remember he's home he quit.
So, as stated before the town was doing all this with limited financial resources, new police cars, new utilities plus the other expenses in the running of a municipality.
And yes there is the saga of, failure to pay the fire department for two years. Well, I can only say this. We have accountants, the fire department has accountants and of course the county does, plus auditors. Not one word. Not a single peep from anyone. The only thing I ever heard from our accountant was we were fine. I find this whole episode very interesting on so many levels. Well, finally ... the admission of tax increases. If you would look back to older tax bills one would find the town's rate being 38 cents, of which 8 cents was to be paid to the fire department. After the realization of the delinquent payments the fire tax was made into its own line item being 8 cents with the town rate being kept at the 38 cents mark. After the delinquent taxes were paid the town's rate remained the same, thus an increase of 8 cents. Now, I've listened to this 6 cents deal but that would leave 2 cents out there somewhere. What could you do with the extra 2 cents? The answer, "Stuff". All this without public input, all very quietly done in part, no thanks to the local print media that left it all alone, almost like sweeping it under the rug.
Let's hire an administrator, one we don't vet, to understand how he came to Stanfield in the first place. The rest is history, the landing strip lighting on West Stanly Street, and of course all the "stuff" at the park. You have to admit the park does look nice and I commend the work but at what price? I mean don't we need to pay off these debts, first? It's the priorities that seem just a little missed managed, in my opinion. I would have rather seen the sewer debt paid and the fees lowered. I mean now, there are now, the financial resources to do so, right?
Interesting to read how much the current board is business friendly. Having spoken to those mentioned in the "letter", their collect thoughts were, " it seemed as though it was us verses them ", when we would have any kind of meeting. I mean there was a new business opened at the Family Fitness Center this past summer and not one representative from the town was at the ribbon cutting. So much for being "pro" business.
Look, a lot of good has been done the last few years, The Fall Festival, the Barn property, the extended curbing on Loves Chapel that is loving called "sidewalks" and new police cars, But like before, you can do a lot with more financial resources.
In actuality that would have been fine had the "letter" stopped with the positive. But then the hate burst forth, the seemingly bottom dwelling dislike for Rick Huggins. To say that I single handily moved town facilities to one of my properties? Is for lack of a better word or description, "silly ". First, the town had NO utility building in which to house the department. The town had just started on the water and sewer business, I would ask you to talk to the other members of the town board on how that the public works became located at 139 Concord St. at a discounted rate that included the use of the vacant lots behind West Stanly Mini Storage. I would be interested in knowing where the facility was that they moved from? As for the Stanfield Police Department, most of us are aware the police department was located on the site where the Barn is built. And why the move you may ask. The trailer that housed the department fell apart, due to termite and water damage. Then the search started to find a replacement facility. None was found. So, with much trepidation I suggested they could use a unit on Concord Street where the former tenant had vacated due to a bankruptcy for half of the rent rate which came to $450 per month. That was to be until they found a permanent home. Now, in each case, I rescued myself from the discussions as I have with all my properties when for rezoning or other reasons came before the board. This to make sure there is no mistake or (false assumptions) of wrong doing. Maybe Mr. Barbee should ask those members how this was done. Also ask the police chief at the time Robbie Huneycutt (sorry if I spelled the name wrong) how they came to their decision. I'm sure they would give you the honest answer. But remember, Mr. Barbee had quit so all he can do is make false charges not even attempting to find the truth. As, far as using attorneys? To get my way? I don't have a clue what where he's going with this one. Seems, in this section of the "letter" his emotions have gotten the better of him. Remember he has this unhealthy hatred of Rick Huggins. I only used my personal attorney to recoup earnest money owed by the town (which the administrator was refusing to relinquish) when they cancelled two contracts to buy the units on Concord Street. Which I may add, the rental fees that had been paid for the police department were subtracted from the original price and also included giving over a quarter of an acre lot to the utility's department. I may also add at a far less cost to the tax payers than what was done. Mr. Barbee when hearing of the plan to put the utility building and industrial site on a free site on Nance Rd. provided by developer Keith Austin to prevent a decision that would change the whole park complex of the multi-use field, ie: softball/baseball, football and soccer, and shrinking an already small park even smaller. He said; "no".
These were not business decisions but ones made of emotion and plain mean stubbornness. No wonder the sin of "pride" is the devil's favorite. There you have it, I could have continued but I think I've made my point. I know that others were complicate in creating the "letter" I recognize their work but what you gonna do? For me, I will continue go forward. I wish to thank those who at the polling place came up and apologized for the last section included in the "letter" knowing me and that how anyone who had seen the time, money and energy given to the town and it's good folks think I could hold them in "contempt" was ridiculous. Actually, the opposite was stated and the one with contempt was the author/authors. At least now there will be more interest in what is being done, by whom and what for. There are still many questions to be answered and in two years another election. Stand by, I have a feeling this is not the last we'll be hearing about Mr. Barbee.
Ending, let's stay involved and get more folks out to vote!
Food For Thought
I noticed TV ads appearing for the last several weeks asking North Carolinians to call Senator Kay Hagen and thank her for saving us from mercury poisoning. If she really wants to help us she needs to be saving us from Obama Care poisoning.
The Locust Government Center
Check out the web site http://www.locustnc.com for latest information about our city or the Locust Patch, Weekly Post and Stanly News&Press.
Have a great a week and listen to my radio show every Monday morning at 7:45 am on WSPC 1010 am or on the Internet at www.1010wspc.com for the latest happenings in Western Stanly County.
The City of Locust requires a golf cart sticker for driving on city streets. Go by the Locust Police Department located in the Locust Town Center in the Locust Government Center at 186 Ray Kennedy Drive and see Capt. Charles Connell for your permit and sticker.
New Golf Cart Sticker
City of Locust Golf Cars (Cart) Ordinance click here.
Join us in welcoming the new members of the Green Pieces Family:
Alcoa Power Generating, Inc.
American Red Cross -Stanly County
Charlotte Soccer Academy
Crook Motor Co.
Electronics Recyclers International, Inc.
JT Russell & Sons, Inc.
Main Street Music-Albemarle
Myers Park United Methodist Church
Stanly Regional Agricultural Fair
Thank you and we look forward to working together!
Green Pieces Recycling
Did you know? Locust residents with recycling rollcarts average approximately 30-40lbs of recycling each collection per household totaling 400lbs on annual basis!
The proper way of disposing a worn American Flag Click here.
Roger Hypes will be sharing some human interest stories of people, events, and places of our Locust community.
One of the definitions of community is the area itself; people with common interests living in a particular area. The Remember When… column should help us better understand the history, people and happenings of Locust, the place we call home.
Remember When…will help us all to take the time out of our busyness to reflect, reminisce, think back, recollect, go over in the memory and hopefully, be able to share a smile of a memory to make us better appreciate the present. Take a deep breath, lay in the grass and look up in the sky of the cloud shapes, or the stars at night.
I would ask that if you have an event, a crossroads, a person that has helped create the history of Locust, get in touch with Roger Hypes (firstname.lastname@example.org. “Remember When…” will not be in every week update of Locust Patch, but when stories are available and to give the story the value it deserves. Be thinking as I feel this will be a good way for all of us to appreciate what we have, and where we live.
North Carolina House of Representatives
Rep. Justin P. Burr
1315 Legislative Building, Raleigh, NC 27601-1096
(919) 733-5908 – Justin.Burr@ncleg.net
Rep. Justin P. Burr
North Carolina House of Representatives
67th District - Stanly, Union, and Montgomery Counties
Legislative Office Building, Room 307A
300 N. Salisbury Street
Raleigh, NC 27603-5925
Dina Long - BurrLA@ncleg.net
North Carolina Senate
Senator Gene McLaurin
25TH DISTRICT: Anson, Richmond, Rowan, Scotland, Stanly
July 19, 2013
Report from Raleigh
July 19, 2013
I recently had the opportunity to visit the Anson County Partnership for Children for a seminar to educate the community on the importance of early childhood education. The Partnership is responsible for helping to better educate our young children prior to entering Kindergarten by providing a foundation for learning. Their results are proven, with many studies showing greater school achievement in K-12 and fewer special education placements. A Duke University study showed that students who attend Pre-K programs perform better in 3rd grade than students who do not, which translates to better reading and math scores. I am so proud of the work our Pre-K programs are doing in Anson, Richmond, Scotland, Stanly, and Rowan Counties and across the state. Education lifts people out of poverty, promotes good citizenship and community involvement, and provides a better quality of life for all of us.
As the legislature winds down in the coming week and we tackle the remaining budget and other bills, I want to briefly mention a few bills recently passed in the Senate:
HB 269: Children with Disabilities Scholarship Grants - This bill’s passage will help to better equip the parents of children with disabilities to provide the very best education possible for their child. Children with severe learning disabilities need our support to enable them to reach their potential and deserve the right resources. Many of our public school students have Individualized Education Plans, to foster learning according to that child’s physical, mental, or learning disability. Our special education teachers are highly educated and trained to promote the very best outcomes for these students. There are some students, however, who need specialized resources after exhausting those available to them. House Bill 269 will allow these parents to obtain a $4,200 scholarship to be used at a private school of their choosing if additional resources are needed.
HB 857: Public Contracts/Construction Methods/Design Build/ Public Private Partnership - This bi-partisan legislation seeks to provide our communities with options for using the design-build method of construction and sets out the requirements and procedures for public-private partnership projects. This will help save local governments money, and therefore cost the taxpayer less, as well as foster private market growth.
SB 140: Financial Exploitation of Older Adults - Each of us knows someone or knows of someone who has been financially exploited by dishonest people who put their interest in generating profit above the common good. Senate Bill 140, sponsored by my friend, Senator Stan Bingham (R-Davidson), stiffens criminal penalties for those who defraud the disabled and older adults. This bill creates a tracking system for reports of this type of financial, gives Social Services and District Attorneys another tool to protect the assets of disabled and older adults, and extends the Task Force on Fraud Against Older Adults until 2015. This research-based bill is a great step in the right direction, and I was proud to support this legislation.
As always, please feel free to email me at Gene.email@example.com or send a letter to 1118 Legislative Building, Raleigh, NC 27601. Of course, you can also reach me or my Legislative Assistant, Katie Stanley in my Raleigh office at 919-733-5953. If you would like to stay engaged, please visit the NC General Assembly’s website at www.ncleg.net . You can listen to the audio of the Senate Chamber, find resources for school-aged children, read the current day’s bills, and more.
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See the benefits that vegetables give to your body Click here.
LEE MIDDLETON DOLLS AVAILABLE
Lane Ross Designs
He designs screen prints on regular screen doors. He does fire fighter designs, does branches of the military, vintage signs ie Merita Bread, Texaco, Shell, Sundrop etc. He also does different beach themes ie crab, sail boats, beach umbrella/chairs and many more designs. If interested, please contact Lane Ross at 704 467 7880 or by email, JLROSS90@hotmail.com. Prices are approx $110 for a design.
Play Red Bridge Golf & Country Club
* You must present a paid golf voucher at time of play. Rate not available at golf course.
Call the Pro Shop at 704-781-5231 to Book Today!
Golf & Country Club
Red Bridge Golf Club : 6801 Gatehouse Rd : Locust, NC 28097 : Phone: 704-781-5231
d :C 28097 : Phone: 704-781-5231
See Restaurant Row in the Locust Patch Enter here
Shop Local Click Here
Grant Hartsell Masonry LLC
Specializing in Brick, Block, Stone and a Good Job
Call 704-888-6730, 980-581-0237 or DC 150*5*5158http://www.mason4you.com
The West Stanly Business Association is a group of local
business owners who meet on the first and third Wednesday, of every month at 12
noon until 1:00 pm at Stanly Community College in the Honeycutt Room. Lunch is
$5.00 per person, annual dues are $35.00 per company. Our main focus is to
discuss the issues in the community related to local business: marketing ideas
and strategies, small business issues, community development issues and the
like. Most meetings involve a guest speaker to discuss pertinent issues. We
welcome all business owners in and around Locust, Oakboro, Red Cross and
Stanfield. Business owners in Midland are also welcome to join us as we share
services even though we are in different counties. This is an open forum for the
exchange of ideas related to local business. So come on down and join in. We
just might be what you have been waiting for!
For more information, please feel free to contact Mike Harwood at the Bank of Stanly
What's Playing Click here.
823 Highway 24/27 East, Albemarle, NC 28001
1000 North 1st Street Suite11 | Albemarle, NC 28001 US