Tag Archives: City Council

Public Private Partnership Fails… Deal Could Chain Residents to Long Term Debt

A funny thing happened on the way to the gym a few months ago. Yep, I arrived and it was closed. All the equipment was gone! Empty! The note said my membership would transfer laterally to another local gym. The owners were going out of business.

Flashback 7 years ago when the City of Kinston and County of Lenoir entered into a public/private contractual agreement with Woodmen of the World to build office facilities, a state of the art gymnasium and a water park! An $8 million project. Taxpayers dollars were put on the table quickly to the tune of $1 million. Half from the City and half from the County and the Woodmen Community Center was constructed. There are other recurring expenses such as maintaining insurance, but the contract called for $1 million. The center/water park did remarkably well for the first year but has been losing money ever since. Image result for public private partnership

The Woodmen Community Center has already become a Fiscal Albatross to the Woodmen of the World organization and to the City/County. So let’s look at where our liberal elected leaders and non-elected bureaucrats have led us. 

First infraction – Government should NEVER compete with the private sector!  Public/private partnerships are enticing but rarely work without infringing upon personal rights. Our leadership entered into an agreement, as such January 30, 2011, with YOUR money READ HERE.

The Woodmen Center was a losing proposition from the beginning. Using tax dollars to put gyms out of business or damage them financially is a cardinal sin. But the public bought the “snake oil” hook, line, and sinker. Did the residents have a choice in the matter? I think not as the vote was shoved through with very little public disclosure.

The promise of affordable memberships and the water park bringing business was a sales gimmick.  Prior to building of the Center, I questioned a, now retired, department head as to how it is that the population he intended to serve couldn’t afford a membership and most likely wouldn’t be able to get there. He said they would have scholarships and the River Walk would be built making it easier for travel by bike or walking. I asked where the scholarships would come from and why he thought he could depend on a trail that wasn’t even funded as a travel route from east Kinston. He could not answer the question.

Now there is also a lawsuit pending against the Woodmen after a near drowning. Losing money hand over fist and facing a lawsuit of this magnitude, no wonder they want to “Gift” the facility to local government (Click HERE). Will our elected leaders make the same mistake again and fall for the Bling? From reading some news quotes, sounds as if our freshman Mayor and some others in leadership are leaning that way. It’s not YOUR money to lose, Mayor! This is a terrible deal for the City and County. Do the right thing!Image result for BAD CONTRACT

As we say in my profession ~ “You start out wrong and keep going wrong and you wind up wrong!” 

Kinston City Council and Lenoir County Commissioners must hold Woodmen to this contract.The Woodmen Organization can bear the financial burden in fulfilling their obligations. If it takes a lawsuit to persuade them to do the right thing, then so be it.

The taxpayers CAN NOT support this Center without more hidden fees and/or increased taxes. Kinston and Lenoir County have one of the highest combined tax rates in the state of North Carolina. Ironically, we are one of the poorest counties in the State. Those residents already bearing the brunt of the fiscal responsibility in this County are done with inadequate leadership. We will NOT further subsidize incompetence. Tell them to do the right thing!


Read the original agreement by clicking HERE

  1. Contact your City Council Members and County Commissioners and tell them NOT to take the “GIFT” from the Woodmen of the World organization. Tell them to stick to the original agreement no matter what. We don’t want the inevitable debt!
  2. Links for contacting City Council Members are HERE
  3. Links for contacting County Commissioners are HERE

You can stay abreast of developments by visiting the Woodmen Infomation for Kinston-Lenoir Citizens Facebook Page by clicking HERE.

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Don’t Vote With Your Feelings

“All politics is local”

Municipal races are in full swing and early voting is underway in many cities and towns. I enjoy this time of year but as a grassroots activist of the conservative variety it still surprises and amazes me when I hear why residents vote for a particular candidate.

In small town politics, my home town included,  it has been my observation that most residents vote, not on the candidate’s qualifications or ability to lead, but rather on candidate popularity, race, and/or party affiliation. Many get their marching orders at the polls.

In general, the liberal mentality is emotionally based, while conservatives tend to see things in a more pragmatic manner. It’s important to work together to serve all residents fairly, but if your tax base is low, the budget needs to reflect that reality. Conservatives tend to promote living within their means while simultaneously serving all residents equally.




  • 1.dealing with things sensibly and realistically in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations:“a pragmatic approach to politics”synonyms:practicalmatter-of-factsensibledown-to-earthcommonsensical… moreantonyms:impractical

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When you elect a Mayor, City or Town Councilman or other public servant, you are electing them to make decisions for you for the next four(4) years or whatever that term may be.

Feelings don’t really matter. Electing qualified individuals that will make fair decisions with your money is what really matters.

Regardless of what they campaign on, non-qualified candidates have no business playing Monopoly with tax dollars. 

What does “All politics is local” mean? It means you are affected the most by local politics, not by what is does at the State and Federal level. Think about it.

Just something to chew on. Vote Responsibly!

The Business End Of The Sausage Machine

NC House Bill 2 (HB2) has made a media splash when the North Carolina Legislature countered government overreach dictated by Charlotte’s City Council… their “use whichever bathroom you ID with…” ordinance.  The ordinance was a gross violation of the morals and ethics of the people of North Carolina in so many ways there have been reverberations felt all over the country… and the bathroom floor is still shaking!transgenderthumb

Fascist Government Mandates seem to be quite the trend these days, a tone set by the POTUS, Obama. At first larger corporations were coming out of the woodwork in support of transgenders and their rights. Musicians (if you can call some of them musicians) boycotted North Carolina. However, once a clear message had been sent by the NC Legislature, a representative voice of the people of North Carolina, that these corporations threatening to boycott our State could simply take their business elsewhere, Obama and the Feds launched a separate assault threatening to take away North Carolina education dollars. The general public doesn’t know, but the Feds only contribute about 15% – 20% to our education funding….. only with strings attached, like dangling a carrot in front of a donkey. One example?…. Common Core standards/mandates/decrees.

We don’t take the funding and we aren’t beholden to the Feds or their silly games.  

The liberal progressives will try other forms of blackmail of course. North Carolina launched a lawsuit a week ago against these federal bullies just hours before the Feds launched their own against North Carolina and our Governor.  media-bias-obama

But…ALL of this is just a smoke screen, a diversion in a critical election year.  Those acquiring their “news” from progressive mainstream media to include CBS, NBC, ABC, MSNBC, the NY Times, Charlotte Observer, Winston-Salem Journal, or the News and Observer (just to name a few) are getting the story spun to fit an agenda set by donor dollars. Yes, even FOX has a conservative image to uphold.  These media outlets care about one thing, selling a story…. and we need to remember that.


Most often what comes out of the business end of the sausage machine is a propagandized tie-died remnant of the truth.

Remember, these news outlets depend on advertising dollars to survive and can’t afford to tick off the wrong people…. their existence depends on it. They are bought and sold!

Because of the fissure created when the HB2 firecracker went off, Obama is doing what Obamas do best, issuing more decrees, creating division, and inciting riot …. this time he wants ALL publicly funded schools across the country to comply with his gender neutral bathroom decree.

His ammo? He will unilaterally withhold federal education dollars, the only illegal leverage he has. It’s our belief the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) should be defunded and shut down, the authority and responsibility given back to the States to educate our children.  

Remember this…. North Carolina is a pivotal state in 2016 with the Number 1 Governor’s race and Number 1 Senate race in the country. We are 6th in the nation in delegate count with 72!  We are a threat to Obama’s agenda, Roy Cooper’s agenda, Rev. Wm. Barber’s agenda, and to Hillary’s agenda. The mortar attacks we are experiencing now are only the beginning of what is to come. We should take it very personally!

When Donald Trump is elected as next President of the United States of America he will address the unconstitutional decrees and mandates by simply reversing them.  But until then, until we have a real leader to stand up for the working class, the people that drive this country’s economy, the monkey business will continue. Until we have a real leader to stand up to the corruption in Congress and most importantly the bureaucrats that are holding us all hostage, the monkey business will continue. marsupialsWe need a new zookeeper ….yesterday!

Police…… Turn Your Guns Over & Get a Prize ~ WoooHoooo!

We’re scratching our heads over this one…. Greensboro police have asked residents, anyone over 18, to voluntarily turn in their weapons.  That’s right, you heard it!  This is actually happening in North Carolina, our home State!  Read the article HERE.

But then again, just last week we read that Greensboro police were halting all traffic stops for minor infractions like a taillight or headlight out.  This is billed as their solution to “racial disparity” since a liberal UNC professor and his undergraduate researchers released information that black folks are four (4) times more likely to get pulled over by police (racial profiling) than white folks. What we can’t figure out is…. did anyone consider that a high percentage of minorities fall into a lower income category and may have a harder time maintaining their vehicles.  Read the article HERE. This policy change to end racial disparity most likely treats the symptom, not the root cause of the illness.

The “racial disparity” thing is believable, especially with all the liberal media hype.  But the vulnerability of the public will be tested with this voluntary weapons disposal scheme.  We are, most likely, preaching to the choir.  However, these two Liberal Progressive moves in one city within days of one another, set off multiple alarms in our heads.  Our Liberty is under assault in own backyard.  The second amendment is being tested by a liberal Police Chief supported by a liberal Democratic City Council.  Use this highlighted link to contact the City Council.  Call and question their rational for supporting this program. Go ahead, I dare you.  Let us know what they say!

Amendment II

“A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

There is no ambiguity, hiccup or doubt in the above text, no interpretation needed. In their wisdom the authors of the Constitution, our founding fathers, feared we would, one day, need protection from a government “gone wild”.  Seeing what is happening in Greensboro, the prudent gun owner should begin stocking up on ammo while the “sheeple” flock to the gun disposal bin for their consolation prize.  Voluntary gun disposal is a ploy to gain complete control over a populous, it is waste of taxpayer money, and it does not curb crime.  It only puts the innocent law abiding residents at risk by not having ample protection. 

Nothing good will ever come from big government.  Things are getting interesting with ISIS now threatening our homeland.  They have even released a list of cities they claim they may target. Relinquishing your weapons in a gun buy back program does not make the Top 10 list for preparedness (insert sarcasm). Germany began disarming it’s citizens in 1939 and then slaughtered 16 million Jews. More HERE.  Beware!  Though they are sold as such, programs like these are NOT about gun safety or curbing crime.  They ARE only about government CONTROL over a compliant populous.

Ya’ll think about it. We are. 


Never surrender your rights, Never give up, Never shut up, and keep getting up!” ~ dailynewsfix.org

Lenoir County Republicans Bring Conservative Candidates To Kinston for Shrimp-a-Roo Fundraiser

Thursday, October 22, 2015 is the first day of One Stop voting (early voting) in Lenoir County’s municipal elections.   The timing could not be better for a Lenoir County Republican Party’s fundraiser.  The event is a Shrimp-a-roo to be held from 6PM-9PM at the Kinston Nature Center in Kinston, NC.   The venue is outside under the picnic pavillion on the Neuse River.  We should have a nice fire for you to enjoy on a crisp October evening!

Event sponsors include NC House Representative John Bell, IV and NC Senator Louis Pate. NC Appellate Court candidates Hunter Murphy and Richard Dietz will be mingling with the crowd along with Superior Court candidate Stuart Stroud (see bio below) from Lenoir County.  Kinston City Council candidate Steve Ragan (page link) will also share his plan to improve our hometown.  This event is a meet and greet format AND a chance for Republicans to highlight these gentlemen who are working hard to serve us all.   And, the Judges and Judge candidates will Judge the shrimp dishes!

We may also have a surprise candidate or two pop in…… don’t tell anyone but some big announcements may be coming our way!

Entertainment? We’ve got it! The bluegrass sounds of “The Gun Boat Boys” will be wafting through the trees and down the river!  Gotta love a little banjo on cool, crisp evening in front of an outdoor fireplace.

Okay, for the food!  We’ll have four (4) kinds of Shrimp.  Like Bubba says, “You can cook shrimp all kinds of ways, Forest!”  We’ll have Jambalaya, Boiled Shrimp, Shrimp Stew, and Scampi plus all the fixins’.  Beer, wine, and refreshments are included in this ‘All You Care to Eat’ affair.  Celebrity Chefs will be local favorites David Mooring, Jimmy Hill, and Tommy Pressly.  The price is $40 per person and tickets are available now.  You may call Lenoir County Republican Chairman, John Nix at 252-560-2150 to secure your tickets today.


Stuart L. Stroud, Superior Court Candidate District 8A

Stuart L. Stroud is a native of Lenoir County and is the oldest child of Reginald and Maidred Stroud.  Stuart graduated from South Lenoir High School in 1985.  He received his bachelor’s degree in Education from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1989.  He then went on to graduate from Law School at Campbell University in 1992.  While in law school, he was a member of the trial advocacy team and was honored to be included in “The Order of Old Kivette” for having excelled in advocacy in regional trial competition.

Stuart began working for the law firm of Wallace, Morris Barwick and Rochelle in 1992 and has been a partner in that firm, now Wallace, Morris, Barwick, Landis and Stroud, PA,  since 1997.  Stuart is a member of the North Carolina State Bar and the N. C. Bar Association.  Stuart is admitted to practice in all state courts of North Carolina as well as Federal District Court- Eastern District and the Fourth Circuit US Court of Appeals.  

Stuart’s legal practice initially focused on Criminal Defense in District and Superior Court and traffic offenses.  However, for the last 15 years he has focused on civil litigation representing clients in a variety of legal disputes across eastern North Carolina and has tried jury trials in over 20 counties.  Stuart has also been certified as a Superior Court Mediator since 1999.  Mediators assist other attorneys and their clients in resolving their disputes without litigation.  In 2008, Stuart was invited to join the Eastern North Carolina Inn of Court.

Stuart and wife, Kelli Barefoot Stroud reside in Kinston and have one daughter, a sophomore at Appalachian State University.

Stuart is active in his church and is currently finishing his third, three year term as a member of the Vestry at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church and has previously served as the Senior Warden.  Stuart was honored to receive the Order of Saint George Award from the Episcopal Church and the Boy Scouts of America in 2015 for his dedication to the youth of the church and his service to the Boy Scouts.  Stuart is a former assistant scoutmaster with Troop 41 in Kinston and still serves on the Troop Committee.

Stuart earned his Eagle Scout award in 1983, is a Vigil honor member and Founder’s award recipient from the Order of the Arrow, and a former Lodge Chief of Croatan LodgeStuart has served as Council attorney for The East Carolina Council for over ten years.  In 2011, Stuart received the Silver Beaver Award for his service to the Caswell district and East Carolina council.  Stuart has also been on the board for the Pride of Kinston, the Chamber of Commerce, the Red Cross and is a member of the Rotary Club of Kinston, the Committee of 100 and is a supporter of the United Way.

Stuart, in his spare time, likes to hunt (previous sponsor and committee member with Ducks Unlimited and is a member of the NRA), fish, exercise, read, backpack, cook and spend time with his extended family.