Up & Coming Weekly

September 19, 2017

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.

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Page 52 of 100

16 SEPTEMBER 20 - 26, 2017 WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM POLITICS POLITICS Biggest Local Scandal Clerk of Courts/Judge Kim Tucker In 2013, Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Jim Ammons appointed District Court Judge Kim Tucker as clerk of court, passing over who many observers felt was the obvious choice: 22-year veteran Chief Assistant Clerk of Cumberland County Superior Court Cindy Blackwell. Shocked and disappointed, Black - well left the service of Cumberland County and took a prominent position at the North Caro- lina Administrative Office of the Courts in Raleigh, where she currently works. During Tucker's tenure, she endured an 18-month investigation involving interviews, accusations and even surveillance. Tucker was accused of not show- ing up for work. WRAL TV then did a news story on the situation. It stated: "Data provided by the Cumberland County Sheriff 's Office, which handles security at the courthouse, shows Tucker's key card was used to access the parking garage or secure courthouse doors or elevators on only 73 of the 163 work days that were reviewed — a 44 percent attendance rate. The data doesn't show how long she was at the courthouse on each occasion." Tucker denied the allegations against her but has decided not to seek reelection. Tucker resigned her position as of July 31. Blackwell, in the meantime, decided that she wanted to return to Cumberland County to fill the clerk's position, saying, "The clerk is not just an elected office. It's a job with real work to be done, and the people deserve a clerk that wants to work. I will show up for work and make sure the citizens have an advocate for them in the courthouse." On Aug. 30, Superior Court Judge Jim Ammons appointed longtime county employee Lisa Scales to fill the vacant position left by Tucker's resignation, again overlooking Blackwell. Blackwell intends to officially seek the position in 2018. Best Use of Local Tax Dollars/Worst Use of Tax dollars Baseball Stadium Well, if there is any indication of the existence of a healthy skepti- cism, it's here in the responses to these two questions. And everyone involved should pay close attention to these findings. Sure, everyone loves baseball and wants to see it come to Fayetteville. And no doubt the baseball stadium will be the nucleus of this much- needed economic development downtown — development that will have the potential of attracting over $50 mil - lion in additional economic development. Yep, many people are for it and want to see it happen. However, the reality is that Fayetteville — and Cumberland County, for that mat- ter — have pretty poor track records in making decisions that result in successful economic development projects. This is where that skepticism comes into play. The $33 million baseball stadium isn't just one project. Its success depends on sev- eral other very important projects all coming to fruition. Ultimately, success hinges on everything coming together perfectly to obtain the perfect result. By 2019. At best, it is a healthy skepticism. In the end, it's irrelevant whether you think the baseball stadium is the best use of local taxpayers' dollars or the worst. It's happening. Fingers crossed it turns out to be a good thing. Because once it's built, it is there to stay regardless of its success or failure. It will be like the Crown Coliseum, Festival Park, the county jail and J.P. Riddle Stadium in that it will be a decision we can't take back. So everyone needs to be supportive and on board for its success. Thank You For Voting Us The BEST Landscaping Company Proudly Supporting Fayetteville and the Surrounding Areas For Over 31 Years! • Lawn And Landscape Management • Landscape Installation • Walkways, Patios, Retaining Walls • Fully Licensed & Insured 3724 Sycamore Dairy Rd, Suite 100 ■ Fayetteville, NC 28303 ■ (910) 864-8100 ■ Fax: (910) 864-0174 ■ E-Mail: art@allegranc.com Please proofread this copy and artwork carefully. after proofreading, if there are no changes and artwork is ready to move into production please sign and return this form to us by one of the following options: • Fax: 910.864.0174 • Email: allegra-art@nc.rr.com • Deliver: 3724 Sycamore Dairy Rd, Suite 100 • Fayetteville, NC Any expense incurred in the collection of this debt, including court cost and attorney fees, will be the responsibility of the purchaser. "In signing below I assume responsibility for all prepress, and bindery costs, as well as any costs for reprinting, which any error which I may find after the job is printed." Approved, no changes. Approved, with changes. _________________________________________________________________ Signature business cards scale: 20% qty: 1 each 4.5"x72" 23"x35" 2433 Hope Mills Road Fayetteville, NC 28304 (910) 424-4242 Life's too short...Eat Dessert First! HOT Fried Croissants Daily at: 6 a.m. • 9 a.m. • 12 p.m. CELEBRATING 61 YEARS! Thank You for Voting Us BEST BAKERY

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