Up & Coming Weekly

January 22, 2019

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

Issue link: http://www.epageflip.net/i/1073646

Contents of this Issue


Page 4 of 32

4 UCW JANUARY 23-29, 2019 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM PUBLISHER'S PEN STAFF PUBLISHER Bill Bowman Bill@upandcomingweekly.com ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER/ EDITOR Stephanie Crider editor@upandcomingweekly.com OPERATIONS DIRECTOR Paulette Naylor accounting@upandcomingweekly. com ASSISTANT EDITOR Leslie Pyo leslie@upandcomingweekly.com SENIOR SPORTS EDITOR Earl Vaughan Jr. EarlUCWSports@gmail.com REPORTER Jeff Thompson news@upandcomingweekly.com GRAPHIC DESIGNER Elizabeth Long art@upandcomingweekly.com SALES AND MARKETING DIRECTOR Kimberly Herndon kim@upandcomingweekly.com MARKETING ASSOCIATE Linda McAlister Brown linda@upandcomingweekly.com CONTRIBUTING WRITERS D.G. Martin, Pitt Dickey, Margaret Dickson, Karl Merritt, John Hood, Jim Jones, Shanessa Fenner, Prudence Mainor SALES ADMINISTRATOR/ DISTRIBUTION MANAGER Laurel Handforth laurel@upandcomingweekly.com ––––––––––– Up & Coming Weekly www.upandcomingweekly.com 208 Rowan St. P.O. Box 53461 Fayetteville, NC 28305 PHONE: (910) 484-6200 FAX: (910) 484-9218 Up & Coming Weekly is a "Quality of Life" publication with local features, news and information on what's happening in and around the Fayetteville/Cumberland County community. Up & Coming Weekly is published weekly on Wednesdays. Up & Coming Weekly welcomes manuscripts, photographs and artwork for publication consideration, but assumes no responsibility for them. We cannot accept responsibility for the return of unsolicited manuscripts or material. Opinions expressed by contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of the pub- lisher. The publisher reserves the right to edit or reject copy submitted for publication. Up & Coming Weekly is free of charge and distributed at indoor and outdoor locations throughout Fayetteville, Fort Bragg, Pope Air Force Base, Hope Mills and Spring Lake. Readers are limited to one copy per person. © 2019 by F&B Publications, Inc. Cover photo image credit: Cape Fear Regional Theatre L to R: Yankee Doodle Farmer, Robert Newman, Zoi Pegues. All rights reserved. Reproduction or use of editorial or advertisements without permission is strictly prohibited. Various ads with art graphics designed with elements from: vecteezy.com and freepik.com. Hope Mills deserves better leadership by ELIZABETH BLEVINS ELIZABETH BLEVINS, Up & Coming Weekly Correspondent and founder of HopeMills.net. Editor's note: On occasion, Publisher Bill Bowman yields this space to allow others to discuss relevant local topics. is week's Publisher's Pen is by HopeMills.net founder Elizabeth Blevins. "If you want an amazing downtown, it must start with rock stars leading the way. Board members who understand their commitment." MainStreetAmerica.org Where are the rock stars in Hope Mills? Where's the dedication and commitment from our elected officials? It's a year into their administration, and Hope Mills fresh- man commissioners Jesse Bellflowers, Meg Larson and Mayor Pro Tem Mike Mitchell have commandeered the board of com- missioners while hijacking its dignity and effectiveness. Progress, or anything akin to it, has practically come to a halt. We observe at each Monday night meeting as they flounder, stutter and stammer through the meetings, ill-pre- pared to the point of indecision. In addi- tion, they ignore existing town policies to further their agendas and those of their friends while condemning one another … for failing to follow policy. All this and we've yet to see them effectively serve the citizens of Hope Mills. Elected officials are supposed to serve the community. ey're meant to humble themselves and to put the needs and wants of thousands of Hope Mills citizens before their own personal agendas. ey should serve with humility, not ego. With the exception of Commissioner Pat Edwards, we have seen these Hope Mills Commissioners flit from whim to whim, reacting and rushing through votes with- out pausing to consider the ramifications, feasibility or consequences of their ac- tions — or the ultimate effect on residents. Example: ey agreed to a new walking trail without ever considering the cost of the project or, more importantly, the need. Both of which will ultimately affect the taxpayers. Most recently, the commissioners agreed to hire an outside law firm to come in and conduct an independent investiga- tion without ever defining the reasons or purpose for it or establishing a budget or salary cap for the investigator. Also, they failed to specify what the investigator was supposed to do with the information he gleans from the investiga- tion. What is that all about? An investiga- tion in search of possible wrongdoing? By whom? Mayor Jackie Warner? Warner has been a dedicated servant to the residents of the Hope Mills community for her entire life. How absurd — not to mention a ter- rible and irresponsible waste of the town's financial resources. Especially when there are so many other important needs to be attended to. Besides, Hope Mills does not have a re- call election option, so what's the point? Here's the point : Unfortunately, this en- tire investigation is Larson and Mitchell's attempt to discredit and embarrass Warner while at the same time trying to cover up and justify their collective poor judgement and decision to reject the $1.5 million re- treat the Lone Survivor Foundation wanted to bring to Hope Mills to treat and serve military veterans. With Hope Mills tax money at their disposal, they are proving to be very poor stewards of it. Hope Mills is a great town with awesome potential and caring, loving and concerned residents. Hope Mills deserves better leadership than this. Hope Mills deserves leaders with passion, empathy and vision. It deserves dedicated leaders who take the time to study and understand the issues and fully research options and solutions and plan accordingly. Based on what's good for the town's residents and busi- nesses, Hope Mills' elected officials should listen to the people then determine what's best for the community. We need honest, trustworthy leaders who are proactive, not reactive. Hope Mills is full of rock stars, and its residents are the town's biggest assets with the loudest voices. ey should not let their silence be their consent! Hope Mills deserves better from its elected officials and its citizens should demand such. e town has been subjected to less than it deserves for far too long. We encourage Hope Mills residents to get involved, pay attention and stay informed. Up & Coming Weekly and HopeMills.net are two valuable Hope Mills media resources you can depend on for honest, trustworthy and accurate information. Both are easily accessible to Hope Mills residents and both are available to all residents with free online subscriptions. Let your voices be heard. Remind all the Hope Mills Commissioners that the residents and taxpayers of Hope Mills deserve, no demand, more responsible representation. ank you for reading Up & Coming Weekly, Hope Mills' community newspaper. I appreciate Publisher Bill Bowman al- lowing me to use his space for this editorial. Commissioner Jessie Bellflowers Commissioner Mike Mitchell Commissioner Meg Larson 484-6200 www.upandcomingweekly.com Turn to our calendar every Wednesday and see what's happening!

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of Up & Coming Weekly - January 22, 2019