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Columns

  • District 17 House update

    By Rep. Frank Iler

    Guest Columnist

    Last week in the North Carolina General Assembly we honored our fallen military heroes, as well as our living veterans; we passed a bill to save magistrates from termination because of religious beliefs; and we analyzed the final House budget that we passed the previous week.

    The beautiful weather of Memorial Day weekend turned into a hot and humid week in Raleigh. The shortened week gave us time to catch our breath and continue to analyze the budget we passed in the House and sent to the Senate on May 22.

  • The more things change, the more the best ones stay the same
  • District 17 House update

    By Rep. Frank Iler

    Guest Columnist

    The word on everyone’s mind in the North Carolina House last week was budget. Budget meetings occupied every waking moment. May 19 saw an all day House Appropriations meeting and May 21’s House session lasted all night and into Friday morning, May 22.

  • You Decide: Are there timeless rules for investing?

    Dr. Mike Walden

    Guest Columnist

    There’s rarely a meeting at which I’m speaking where someone doesn’t ask me about investing. Often it’s about the stock market, but sometimes there’s a question about gold, foreign currencies or even options.

    Economics is a discipline that changes as new theories and research alter the way we look at economic issues. But not so with investing — at least that’s my opinion. Many argue the principles most people should use to guide their investments are timeless.

  • Did you have a memorable moment this summer?

    Watching wide receivers go down with knee injuries each week of the NFL preseason has sent me a pretty clear message.

    I should never have joined a fantasy football league. I don’t know what I was thinking.

    No, what I meant to say was it’s clear that summer is coming to an end. The signs are there.

    The fantasy drafts are coming. The college football Top 20 lists are out. Just the other day I heard someone say she was looking forward to the return of pumpkin spice flavors in … everything.

  • Next time, commissioner, don’t hold back

    It is a shame about Huey Marshall. I won’t debate marijuana laws or even hazard a guess about what year North Carolina will put legalizing it on a ballot as other states are doing. He is accused of breaking the law, which is unacceptable in his position, or former position, as Brunswick County’s county attorney.

    But I can understand why he might have done it: He had to work with county commissioners, and that can be stressful. I only have to sit through a couple meetings a month and often I could use a drink afterward.

  • How to take the perfect fireworks photo

    After a dozen years of striving to capture just one good picture of fireworks — on Independence Day or another, lesser fireworks-friendly event, say a baseball game or demolition derby — this year I finally mastered the proper technique and I thought I would share it with our readers.

    Here it is: Put the damn camera away, break out whatever suitably smart phone you have on you, switch on that tiny little camera, aim at the fireworks and mash away on the button.

  • A direct lesson in dealing with roundabouts

    I understand there is a little bit of controversy with the new, and future, roundabouts in the area.

    As I have heard it, some folks don’t like traveling through it or haven’t gotten the hang of roundabouting, yet.

    There’s good news though. I’m here to help. I have been through this before.

    Once upon a time, eight or nine years ago, I lived and worked much closer to Raleigh, the epicenter of this roundabout outbreak.

  • District 8 Senate update

    By Sen. Bill Rabon

    Guest Columnist

    Editor’s note: The Beacon has tried for 10 weeks to reach Sen. Bill Rabon by phone and email for comment about Senate Bill 215, which lists him as the bill’s primary sponsor and calls for the state “to abolish the office of coroner in Brunswick County.” Senate Bill 215 was reported favorable to the Senate’s standing committee on health care and re-referred to the Senate Judiciary I Committee on March 31.

  • District 17 House update

    By Rep. Frank Iler

    Guest Columnist

    Last week in the North Carolina House of Representatives, we passed individual departmental budgets, we passed a major property insurance reform bill, and I continued to have visitors from back home.

    It was so hot last week in Raleigh that on May 12, when it hit 90 degrees, everybody who owned a seersucker suit was wearing it. The budget meetings were also hot and heavy, as were some of the debates over revenue and appropriations.