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Showing 32 articles from August 7, 2009.

FRONT PAGE

Farm equipment theft ring stretched as far as Virginia
WILSON, LYNCH
Farm equipment theft ring stretched as far as Virginia
With two strings of arrests made, Franklin County and area law enforcement agencies are uncovering a theft ring that has reached as far as Virginia.
On Wednesday, investigators arrested a man alleged to have led a ring of thieves who poached farm equipment in Franklin, Vance and Warren counties.
In all, investigators have arrested seven people.
Franklin County Sheriff Pat Green said the suspects scoped out properties during the day and struck at night.
Their hauls usually ended up being sold all over the place.

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On the night shift
On the night shift
Above, Joshua Green, the son of Interim Franklinton Police Chief Lt. John Green Jr., greets the Chick-fil-A mascot with the help of his mother, Tammy Green, during the town’s National Night Out festivities on Tuesday.

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New landfill law effective Oct.1
New landfill law effective Oct.1
Beginning Oct. 1, a new law will go into effect banning wooden pallets, oil filters and plastic bottles from going into landfills across the state.
But that doesn’t mean that county Solid Waste Director John Faulkner all of a sudden expects to have a transfer station free of those banned substances, particularly plastic bottles.
The General Assembly adopted the legislation in 2005, taking a step to remove the recyclable items from county landfills, transfer stations and convenience centers.
Franklin County has recycling bins which allow residents to keep those items separate from regular household and other waste.

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SBI investigating area man’s death at Rocky Mount hospital
The State Bureau of Investigation’s Medicaid Investigations Unit has been brought in to investigate the death of a young Franklin County man that occurred at Rocky Mount’s Coastal Plain Hospital on July 23.
A spokeswoman confirmed that the SBI is investigating the death of 23-year-old James R. Collins, whose address was listed as Louisburg but who attended Bunn High School. The spokesman would not comment further.
Last week, the Department of Health and Human Services  finished its investigation into the death. Jeff Hedgepeth, director of marketing and public relations for Nash Health Care Systems, said he expected a report on their findings soon.

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Teen recouping from wreck
A Louisburg teenager was recovering this week following a wreck that sent her car down an embankment into a creek.
According to Trooper B.S. Gardner, Britney Strickland, 17, was driving a 2002 Buick heading east on Old Halifax Road when she approached a curve on the 55-mph-road at about 11:20 p.m. on Aug. 2.
The vehicle ran off the right side of the road, Gardner said.
Strickland then over-corrected and and came back across the road, sending the vehicle into a spin.

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Rapid Response Team helps HON employees
The same day that HON officials announced it was closing, its corporate and management team coordinated efforts to help its employees cope with the layoff.
The result was Thursday’s arrival of the Governor’s Rapid Response Team — a group of educators, unemployment resource staff and workforce development authorities — who gave affected employees a chance to ask questions about services available to the about-to-be unemployed.
“We’re hopeful that we can be a benefit to them,” said Vincent Gilreath, the Kerr Tar Regional Council of Governments’ workforce development director, who coordinated Thursday’s event.

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Franklin Face
Franklin Face
UNC-W student Tyler Duncan

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OPINIONS/EDITORIALS

Editorial Cartoon: The Morning After Nov. 4th Pill
Editorial Cartoon: The Morning After Nov. 4th Pill


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The health care debate: get your facts straight
Americans are headed for a historic debate on the closely related questions of health care, access to health care and the ways to pay the bills created.
Yet while the debate will be historic, it may not be historic for the right reasons. Or, even the reasons you suspect.
Health care and the ways to pay for it are at a crisis point in early 21st Century America. Without massive reform and changes, the crisis is going to get worse.

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Goswick’s numbers just don’t compute
Goswick’s numbers just don’t compute
Gee, it seemed like such a simple question.
It occurred as I was reading Carey Johnson’s story on the Franklin County commissioners’ meeting Monday night.
He quoted our very own Economic Development Director Ronnie Goswick as saying Franklin County has “grown by 375 jobs” in the first six months of this year.
Now, to confess, I don’t have a doctorate in mathematics.
I’ve never even been asked to consult with young Mr. Epps on Numbers.

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Goswick changes tune, but song is still political
Goswick changes tune, but song is still political
GOOD MORNING: Just a little over three months ago, on April 23 to be exact, County EDC Director Ronnie Goswick and existing industries coordinator Richie Duncan were telling members of the U.S. 401 Citizens Action Committee that “a widened U.S. 401 would be a great marketing tool for business – particularly at the nearby industrial site adjacent to the Triangle North Executive (Franklin County) Airport” in which the county has already invested in excess of $3 million, chosen because of its proximity to the airport and the prospect that U.S. 401 would be widened.
But they also pointed out that the existing two-lane highway is no lure to business. “Industry wants certain amenities and four-lane access is crucial,” they said.

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Is it really the best they could do?
Listening to legislators defend the just-passed state budget was like hearing a broken record. Over and over they said it was “the best they could do.” Unquestionably this was the worst economy any of them had ever experienced, the gap between projected state revenues and expenditures was almost five billion dollars and the differences between the House and Senate were more dramatic than in many a year.  After haggling for more than a month, with one budget shot down by Governor Perdue, conferees finally agreed, saying it was the toughest negotiations they ever encountered and the compromises they reached were the best they could get passed by their respective houses.

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North Carolina trip falls flat for Obama
RALEIGH – President Barack Obama traveled to North Carolina last month in an attempt to reverse the decline in his job-approval ratings and in the likelihood that his health care plan will get through Congress.
It didn’t work.
One of the reasons why he failed has to do with timing. The President’s message was about eight months out of synch. He acted as though he was still running for president – savaging Republicans and demonizing health insurers while repeating his old campaign promises. But this isn’t the fall of 2008. Reliving his glory days isn’t going to cut it.

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Legislative Watch
The following votes were taken in the General Assembly, week ending August 1 by state Rep. Lucy Allen and state Sen. Doug Berger:

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OBITUARIES

DORIS H. GALL
ZEBULON - Doris Hoxworth Gall, 77, died at her home Monday, Aug. 3, 2009. Services were conducted Thursday, Aug. 6, at Massey Funeral Home in Zebulon.

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MONIQUE D. POWELL
KITTRELL - Monique Vanessa DeMent Powell, 48, died Thursday, Aug. 6, 2009 at her home. Funeral services will be conducted at 4 p.m. today (Saturday, Aug. 8) at Peace’s Chapel Baptist Church, with the Rev. Tony Futrell and the Rev. Jason Hunter officiating. Burial will follow at the church cemetery.

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JAMES E. THIGPEN
CAROLINA BEACH- James Earl Thigpen, 73, died Sunday, Aug. 2, 2009 at New Hanover Regional Medical Center. A remembrance of his life will be celebrated at 11 a.m Saturday, Aug. 15, at 101 King Arthur Drive, Wilmington, NC, home of Mary and James Barnes.

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ALBERT C. AUTREY
FRANKLINTON —Albert C. Autrey, 75, died Tuesday, Aug. 4, 2009. Arrangements by Eakes Funeral Home, Creedmoor.


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SPORTS

LARGE GOALS AT LHS
PATH BLOCKER FOR LHS. Veteran keeper Jesse Nichols will return in goal this season for the Louisburg High School boys soccer team, which is moving up to the Class 2-A Northern Carolina Conference. (Times photo by Geoff Neville)
LARGE GOALS AT LHS
LOUISBURG -- Brent Cardwell thinks his current Louisburg High School boys soccer team has the potential to be the best unit he’s coached during his four-year tenure at LHS.
But bringing home another league championship might prove to be a more difficult proposition for the Warriors.
After dominating recent foes Cape Hatteras and Gates County in the Class 1-A Tar-Roanoke Athletic Conference, Cardwell’s Warriors will encounter much higher league stakes this time around.

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Coe Faces A Building Project
BUILDING BLOCKS. Franklinton High School head coach Deran Coe welcomed several new players to practice this week as the Red Rams get ready for the upcoming boys soccer campaign. FHS is the defending Northern Carolina Conference champ.
Coe Faces A Building Project
FRANKLINTON -- Josh Woodburn placed the ball in front of his foot and took a mighty step before perfectly bending a corner kick into the back of the net.
For a moment, Woodburn’s heroics provided a glimpse into the star-studded immediate past of the Franklinton High School boys soccer program.
Alas, Woodburn was only at a practice session Friday morning to hone his game in preparation for his freshman campaign at Longwood University in Virginia.

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Thoughts continue in soccer
Thoughts continue in soccer
My early-season barnstorming tour of fall sports practice sessions continued this week with trips to see the Franklinton High and Louisburg High boys soccer squads in practice action.
Head coach Deran Coe has built a tremendous program at FHS. I remember, back in the day, everybody wondered if a team could ever take down mighty Roanoke Rapids.
Coe has beaten RRHS in each of the past three seasons, and Franklinton won the Northern Carolina Conference Championship outright over the Jackets in each of the last two years.
What Coe has done at Franklinton is nothing short of amazing.

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Late Gains For LC
Late Gains For LC
LOUISBURG -- The early bird doesn’t necessarily get the worm when it comes to recruiting quality basketball players on the junior college level.
“I need to get a sign for my office that says ‘patience is a virtue’,’’ said Louisburg College men’s hoops coach John Meeks.
In his first full off-season in charge of the LC program, Meeks has learned that lesson firsthand. After sweating out a portion of the recruiting process, Meeks has seen his fortunes flourish over the past few weeks.

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West Tenn gets past Mudcats
West Tenn gets past Mudcats
JACKSON, TENN. --  A six-run first inning proved to be enough for West Tenn, as the Diamond Jaxx staved off the Carolina Mudcats 7-4 in the series opener at Pringles Park on Thursday night in a Class AA Southern League baseball contest.
The first five West Tenn batters reached against Mudcats starter Luis Montano (L, 0-2) in the inning, with three soft singles followed by a pair of walks to force in the first two runs. 
After a sacrifice fly, former NC State Wolfpack infielder Matt Mangini hit a three-run homer to right-center to boost the early lead to 6-0. 

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FC Fire to conduct tryouts
FC Fire to conduct tryouts
FRANKLIN COUNTY -- The Franklin County Fire’s two travel fast-pitch softball teams will be holding tryouts in August.
The FC 12s will conduct tryouts Aug. 23 from 1-3 p.m. at the Bunn Middle School Softball Field. Several positions are currently open for the coming season. Serious players only are invited to participate.
For more information, call Jon Pearsall at 625-9030.
The FC 14s will have tryouts Aug. 15 from 2-4 p.m. at the BMS Softball Field. The club is looking to add two or three players to its roster for the Fall 2009 campaign.

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FHS RED RAM FOOTBALL CAMP
FHS RED RAM FOOTBALL CAMP
Franklinton High School hosted a Youth Football Camp last week on the FHS campus. Youngsters learned the fundamentals of the sport -- along with having a good time. In the photo (above), Dylan Ossino runs a chute sprint.

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LIFESTYLES

Campers experience dance and music
Campers experience dance and music
The benefits of music in the development of children are absolutely incredible, and our community does a fantastic job in giving our young people the opportunity to experience a variety of art- and music-related activities right here in the county. I am referring to art, dance, instruments, voice, crafts, and other creative classes offered in the community and surrounding counties.
Children who take music classes are really at a great advantage in comparison to those who do not. Music, in general, engages both hemispheres of the brain, the benefits of which are carried on into adulthood.

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SCHOOLS/EDUCATION

BARRELS OF FUN
BARRELS OF FUN
Members of Franklinton High School’s National Honor Society visited Niagara Falls this past May. The goal of the trip was to actively engage students in a new culture and the history of that culture. The group visited national parks, historical sites and museums. (Submitted photo)

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VGCC honors retired college personnel
VGCC honors retired college personnel
Vance-Granville Community College held its annual reception on July 16 in the Civic Center to recognize loyal employees who had retired from the college, and particularly the five who retired in the last 12 months. This year’s recognition reception came as the college celebrates its 40th anniversary.
VGCC President Randy Parker welcomed and thanked the retirees, saying, “It’s because of each of you that Vance-Granville continues to grow and prosper. We stand on your shoulders as we take the college to higher and higher levels.”

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COMMUNITY NEWS

SCHOOL SUPPORT
SCHOOL SUPPORT
The awards and accolades continue to roll in for Long Mill Elementary School. The latest award came in the form of a $2,968.50 check through the Big Lots Lots2Give program. Long Mill students, led by Curriculum Resource teacher Lisa Fischer, produced a video outlining how the school is paving the way for 21st Century learning. The video was a finalist in the competition and was later voted second overall through an online voting process. Long Mill Principal Kim Ferrell (left) said the money will be used to help fund classroom technology and books. In addition to this award, Long Mill also received a national award from the Alliance for a Healthier Generation and was recognized in New York City on Aug. 6. More details will appear on the FCS web site in August.



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Lions’ program features services for the blind
Lions’ program features services for the blind
The Louisburg Lions Club enjoyed a program recently on Services for the Blind in Franklin County.
Helen Morton coordinates the program in Franklin and Vance counties and explained that she works in Louisburg with VIPs (Visually Impaired Persons) on Thursday and Friday of each month.  She also advised that there is a VIP support group that meets every Friday at the Louisburg Senior Center, with the meeting starting at 10:30 a.m.

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Granville County man dies in freak accident
A prominent member of the Granville County and Franklinton-area died last week.
According to Granville County Sheriff Brindel Wilkins, Linville Strother was killed when a pecan tree blew over on top of a tractor he was riding on Grove Hill Road in Granville County the afternoon of July 31.
“He was bush hogging his pasture and was coming up to the fence line when the wind blew the tree on top of the tractor,” Wilkins said.
Strother, 84, of Grove Hill Road near the Franklin County line, died at the scene.

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Gunshots and break-ins reported to local law
Louisburg police officers continue to look for suspects who fired several rounds into a home last weekend.
No injuries were reported.
According to a report by Officer Shari Brinkley,  a 27-year-old Ridley Street resident reported on the morning of Aug. 2 that bullets damaged a storm door, front window, back door, television set and several walls inside the home.
Apparently, no one was home when the shooting occurred.

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