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Opinion

  •  We support the county commissioners’ resolution asking the General Assembly to overturn the governor’s veto of the voter identification bill. If that doesn’t happen, legislators should move forward with allowing county governments the authority to mandate voter IDs.

    The Brunswick County Board of Commissioners, in a majority vote of 4-1, supports a measure that calls for members of the North Carolina General Assembly to override Gov. Bev Perdue’s veto of the voter identification bill.

  • Local entrepreneur Lloyd Milliken is looking at ways to create some new jobs here in Brunswick County.
    If all goes as planned, 25 new jobs could be created as Milliken makes changes to business operations at his oyster house on Village Point Road. Milliken hopes to successfully rework his oyster house into a new scallops-processing business.
    In an area where new jobs are desperately needed, and after feeling the effects of the dwindling seafood and related markets over the past several years, it’s good to see a new approach getting under way.

  • It doesn’t matter what side of the dais you’re on, one thing remains true—enough Sunset Beach voters supported Rich Cerrato to secure him a seat as the town mayor.
    And clearly, it’s going to be an interesting term.

  • Time’s up, commissioner Charles Warren.
    You’ve had ample time to prove you can handle your role on the county’s Department of Social Services board—a role you’ve so desperately clung to you’ve even violated the county’s code of ethics in doing so.
    You so badly wanted to prove you could helm the board as chairman you were even censured by your fellow commissioners. In fact, you couldn’t even be bothered to show up for your own censure hearing.

  • Judith Ann Wanser Coufal, 72, of Calabash, died Monday, Dec. 12, 2011, at Emeritus of Westminster.
    Born on Dec. 10, 1939, in O’Neill, Neb., she was a daughter of the late Max and Ceceila Carr Wanser.
    She was the wife of Robert F. Coufal, her husband of 51 years.
    She was a homemaker and later was an information specialist with General Electric. She was of Catholic faith and enjoyed playing bridge, bowling, attending football games, spending time with friends and cooking for the family.

  • Brunswick County Schools officials have a problem getting some of its bus drivers to show up for work.
    And it’s costing taxpayers extra money.
    Worse yet, it’s likely going to cost you more.
    Each time a bus driver calls in sick, the district pays that employee sick time and then must pay a substitute to fill that route.
    To make it worse, officials are often left scrambling to find a replacement driver in the wee hours of the morning—ensuring someone shows up to get a bus on the road and your children safely to school.

  • We’re quite proud of our community college.
    Brunswick Community College has been an innovator in education. Through creative fundraising and knowledgable, visionary leaders, the institution of higher learning continues to grow.
    It offers courses for area students who may have otherwise missed out on a college opportunity or who could have been ill-prepared for life at a bigger university.

  • When swearing-in ceremonies take place there will be some new—and renewed—faces in local elected
    positions.
    In four of our area towns—Shallotte, Calabash, Carolina Shores and Sunset Beach—new mayors have been elected. There are also a number of new people who will serve on town boards.
    While elected officials are getting ready for new terms and soon a new year, we call upon all to learn about—and commit to—open

  • It has been a while since I was 15 years old, but this weekend I was reminded of the trials of being a teen.

    At 15 years old, I was awkward. I had acne. I was shy. I was anxious about my appearance. I was scared to talk to boys. I was a typical 15-year-old girl.

    Anyone who has been 15 understands it is not an easy age. One would hope adults would have compassion toward issues facing a 15-year-old.

  • Mack Leon Hewett, of Shallotte, widower of Edith Eloise Parrish Hewett, passed away on Nov. 2, 2011, in Wilmington.
    He was born on July 31, 1920, in Shallotte to Mattie Ruth and Warren Winslow Hewett.
    He married Eloise on March 20, 1949, and they were married for 54 years before her death in 2003.
    Mr. Hewett is survived by his four children, Jacquelyn Robinson and her husband Darryle, Mack Hewett Jr. and his wife Laura, David Hewett and his wife Cindy, and Amy Tanner and her husband Jeffrey.

  • They may be trying to help Shallotte business owners, but we think Michael and Paula Pease have done a disservice to the people of Shallotte.
    Michael, an appointed member of the Shallotte Board of Aldermen, is seeking election for an aldermen seat, while his wife Paula is a candidate for Shallotte mayor.

  • More than $500,000.
    That’s what Brunswick County Schools Superintendent Edward Pruden estimated a staggered-start schedule could save the district this year.
    That’s the equivalent of about 10 teaching positions.
    With financial cuts and belt-tightening taking place for the last several years, it made sense for the district to look at ways to cut costs and keep teachers where they are needed most—in the classroom.

  • Although Election Day is still weeks away, early voting will begin Thursday in Brunswick County.
    As in past elections, we anticipate many people will go ahead and cast their votes before Tuesday, Nov. 8.
    If you’re interested in learning where and when you can vote, check out this edition of the Beacon. You’ll find a story outlining early voting and telling you where you can go to vote.

  • Throughout Brunswick County people of all ages, from all racial and socio-economic backgrounds, are dealing with the effects of a struggling economy.
    Unemployment numbers remain high, and with seasonal job opportunities winding down, it won’t be surprising to see those numbers increase this year.
    Without an end of this economic downturn in sight, the loss of more than 1,000 jobs to neighboring South Carolina continues to be hard to stomach.
    But even more disappointing is the finger-pointing and blame-games that followed this economic blunder.

  • With a county unemployment rate near 11 percent, we were hopeful Brunswick County would soon announce it was going to be home to the ever-secret “Project Soccer,” a manufacturing business that could have created some 1,000 jobs for the area.
    On Tuesday, however, we learned it was most likely “Project Soccer” was going to head south into South Carolina.
    It’s a disappointing possibility for the entire community, especially those who are finding it nearly impossible to find steady, good-paying jobs in this economic downturn.

  • People who live in communities like ours know how vital the housing and tourism industries are to our livelihood.
    This county has been hard-hit in recent years. As the bottom dropped out of the real estate market, people in many lines of work lost their jobs. From service professionals to business owners, everyone has been hoping the market will soon rebound and jobs and cash flow will return to this area.

  • It was the day that changed America. For those moments we were no longer white or black or a hodgepodge of world races, we were humans. We were broken. We were devastated. We were forever scarred by memories that even now, some 10 years removed from Sept. 11, 2001, we will never forget.

  • Do me a favor, if you don’t mind.

    When you’re finished reading this column—and please, do finish it—will you close the newspaper and take a look at the front page? 

  • There are a lot of people who did a lot of things right as Brunswick County prepared for—and dealt with—Hurricane Irene.

  • Summer is quickly coming to an end and young people throughout Brunswick County are getting ready to head back to school.