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Showing 41 articles from January 6, 2016.

FRONT PAGE

Election Board seat filled ... or, maybe not yet, state decides

LOUISBURG -- When is a Board of Elections member not a member?
When the State Board of Elections says he isn't.
The Franklin County Board of Elections met on Dec. 31 to swear in James Jones as a new member and set an early voting plan.
Both of those actions were essentially squashed a short time later when the State Board of Elections advised Elections Director Lisa Goswick that Jones' appointment was not official.


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<i>Centerville welcomes a new year!</i>
Centerville welcomes a new year!

FLAGS, SMILES and lots of enthusiasm greeted 2016 in Centerville in the early afternoon of Jan. 1 as the town welcomed in the new year with a parade. Fire trucks, tractors, four-wheelers and other entries rounded out the annual parade and the warmer-than-normal temperatures helped with the enthusiasm as well.


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Full Saturday early voting hours at issue

LOUISBURG -- The expected new member of the county's Board of Elections said he felt blindsided by a plan for early voting that didn't include a full Saturday to cast a ballot.
Because of a discrepancy, James Jones isn't officially a member of the board yet, but when he was acting in that capacity during the board's Dec. 31 meeting, he said he didn't agree with a plan that did not call for a full Saturday of early voting.


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County utility staff grows to meet demand

LOUISBURG -- Franklin County commissioners filled out the county's public utility ranks and fulfilled a promise to revaluate the need for more vehicles at the sheriff's office.
The board also authorized county management to get rid of physical therapy equipment that remains at the hospital.
During the most recent budget negotiations in the spring of 2015, the sheriff's office requested almost $450,000 for new vehicles.


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Police issue sparks fireworks
PLAN OF ACTION. Franklinton Police Chief John Green Jr., center, presents commissioners, including Brad Kearney, left, and Alvin Holden, right, with information about the department.
Police issue sparks fireworks

FRANKLINTON -- The town's governing board hosted a planning retreat Wednesday and the first topic of conversation sparked some fireworks between commissioners.
The all-day session was an opportunity for new and returning board members to get a grasp on issues that will impact the town in the interim and into the future, with topics ranging from potholes and street debris to setting goals for the new year.


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County utility department reports two sewage spills

YOUNGSVILLE -- Franklin County reported two sewage spills, one in Franklinton and one in Youngsville.
Public utilities staff said heavy rains caused water to infiltrate the wastewater system, causing overflows in both locations on Dec. 30.
About 14,400 gallons of sewage spilled into a Richland Creek tributary in Youngsville when a sewer main off Railroad Street was overwhelmed.
An overwhelmed lift station in Franklinton off Chavis Street caused a spill of 9,000 gallons of sewage there.


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Franklin Face
Franklin Face

Bunn's I'Kesha Little with tourney trophy


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OPINIONS/EDITORIALS

Editorial Cartoon: GNU Boss
Editorial Cartoon: GNU Boss

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Last edition of 2015 hints at 2016 story topics
Last edition of 2015 hints at 2016 story topics

So much of what we poor, decrepit old news reporters find ourselves doing is shaped by factors outside our control.
And that means the die is cast for a lot of what we'll be writing about over the next several months, especially following our last edition of 2015.
That edition carried two stories of huge local significance, the stabbing death of an elderly woman in a group home and efforts to pump new life and money back into a local clinic that helps serve a medically underserved population.


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A 'mystery meat' menu served up by Congress

Remember when you were a kid and sometimes ate meals prepared in the school cafeteria?
If so, you undoubtedly remember "mystery meat" that everyone called the sometimes low quality, over-seasoned goop that was passed off as the main course. Remember? Of course you do!
It's no laughing matter today because "mystery meat" has returned, served up by those wonderful folks in the U.S. Congress who you thought you elected to represent your interests.


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Uncovering bounce house scandal should have residents jumping for joy
Uncovering bounce house scandal should have residents jumping for joy

I don't have specifics about the fiscal accounting practices in Plymouth, but my experience in other places tells me that audits are performed on most governing boards and public entities each year.
And, more often that not, they don't do much to actually catch fiscal wrongdoing at the time ... or even in the aftermath.
In fact, I can only recall one time, locally, that an audit actually shed some light on some questionable expenditures in a fairly timely manner.


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Terrifying to terrific; election '16 shapes up
Terrifying to terrific; election '16 shapes up

Christmas came a bit early for the political junkies of Franklin County; the afternoon of Dec. 21 to be exact.
That is when Lisa Goswick and her staff at the County Board of Elections had an online listing of those who had filed as candidates in the March primaries posted.
The filings ran the entire gamut from terrifying to terrific.
Even disregarding the presidential and judicial primaries, the plate is very full.


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<i>Remember the records, it's time to vote!</i>
Remember the records, it's time to vote!

On Dec. 6, 2013, a Friday, at approximately 4:40 p.m., 20 minutes before sunset, and too late for anyone to contact officials, many Franklin County commissioners and other county executives began to prosecute the destruction by fire of thousands and thousands of pages of your Franklin County NC historical records.
Records dating back to the year 1840 were among those destroyed; pre-Civil War records.
This was boldly done in spite of these officials having the knowledge there was overwhelming sentiment to preserve and protect these records.


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Editorial Cartoon: Trump and Putin
Editorial Cartoon: Trump and Putin

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OBITUARIES

GERTIE LOU GUPTON

LOUISBURG - Gertie Lou Gupton, 98, of Louisburg died Tuesday, January 5, 2016. Born on December 19, 1917 to the late William Emmitt and Elizabeth "Lizzie" Debnam Brewer. She and her late husband, Ezra A. Gupton, owned and operated a country store in the Wood community for many years. She is also preceded in death by her brothers, Darrell, Maynard and Atlas Brewer; her stepdaughters, Viola Gupton Champion, Blanche Gupton and Elsie Gupton Uzzle.


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SUSIE M. PEARCE

YOUNGSVILLE - Susie Marie Pearce, 72, died Friday, Jan. 1, 2016 in Garner. A memorial service will be conducted at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 9, at Franklinton Baptist Church, 201 W. Mason St., Franklinton, with the Rev. David Averette officiating.


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SPORTS

CATS IN THE CLUTCH
COOKE CLAIMS TWO MORE POINTS. Bunn point guard Bernadette Cooke (with ball) drives for two more points against Corinth Holders.
CATS IN THE CLUTCH

BUNN - Bunn needed a change of pace to defend its girls basketball championship at the annual Bunn Christmas Tournament.
And the Ladycats got it as they were able to increase their transition game in the second half en route to defeating Corinth Holders by a 61-47 total in last Wednesday's tourney finale at the Bunn Dome.
The conquest was Bunn's second in a row over the Lady Pirates in the tournament championship.


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LHS Players On TRAC Team
LHS Players On TRAC Team

LOUISBURG -- Three Louisburg High School standouts have earned spots on the All-Tar-Roanoke Athletic Conference Football Team for the 2015 campaign.
Louisburg's all-league honorees were running back Amonte Moses, linebacker Garrett Ingraham and lineman Jonathan Ward.
Moses, a transfer from Franklinton, led the Warriors in rushing and total yards, while Ingraham battled through injuries to once again star on the defensive side of the ball -- along with seeing some reps in the backfield.


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FHS rolls to win vs. Unicorns
SINK IT. Darion Green connects on a free throw for Franklinton during Tuesday's home triumph.
FHS rolls to win vs. Unicorns

FRANKLINTON -- It took Franklinton all of 18 seconds to shake off the holiday rust during Tuesday's boys basketball return to action against North Carolina School of Science and Math.
The Red Rams won the opening tipoff and scored immediately off a 3-pointer from Semaj McCowan and never trailed en route to rolling past the Unicorns by a 68-32 margin in the key Northern Carolina Conference matchup at the FHS Gymnasium.


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BHS topped by Bulldogs
TRAY FOR TWO. Bunn's Tray Terrell scores inside during Monday's road game at Nash Central.
BHS topped by Bulldogs

ROCKY MOUNT -- When Nash Central's boys basketball starting lineup is introduced at home games, each player is designated as a guard by the public-address announcer.
And there's a good reason for that, because the Bulldogs' shortish lineup is loaded with performers under 6-feet tall.
"The announcer asks me about it, and I just say that we are small and we get after it,'' said NCHS veteran head coach Renny Taylor. "We have a lot of guys who just want to be guards. Some of them might not be able to handle the ball like a guard, but they can all play defense like a guard.''


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Final-Period Swoon
THE BASELINE TAKER. Franklinton's Lamonika Morrison makes a strong move during Tuesday night's home matchup.
Final-Period Swoon

FRANKLINTON -- Franklinton High School's girls basketball players, coaches and fans couldn't help but wonder what went wrong in the fourth period of Tuesday's important Northern Carolina Conference girls basketball showdown at home against North Carolina School of Science and Math.
Franklinton appeared to have the key standings pecking order contest under control with a five-point lead late in the third stanza of action.
But the Unicorns would dominate over the closing 10 minutes en route to rallying past the Lady Rams by a 44-33 margin at the FHS Gymnasium.


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Lady Rams to compete in The Brittany

WILSON -- Franklinton will be Franklin County's lone representative at the 2016 Brittany XII Girls Soccer Tournament.
The annual event will be staged March 11-12 at the Gillette Soccer Complex in Wilson.
Tickets will be available at the gate, with proceeds going to The Brittany Willis Memorial Scholarship Fund. Donations will also be accepted.
The Lady Rams, who reached the third round of the Class 2-A State Playoffs last season, will tangle with Elizabeth City Northeastern on March 12 at 4 p.m. on Field Two.


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A Furious Rally
BUTTERBALL FOR TWO. Bunn's Bernadette 'Butterball' Cooke scores two points Monday against Nash Central.
A Furious Rally

ROCKY MOUNT -- Bunn has gained a well-deserved reputation through the years as being one of the area's top finishers of girls basketball games.
The Ladycats almost always seem to find a way to close out tight contests, but they experienced a bit of role reversal Monday from Nash Central.
The Lady Bulldogs showed some savvy by rallying from an 11-point deficit with 7:38 remaining to stun the Ladycats by a 53-49 margin in a non-conference hoops event at the NCHS Gymnasium.


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Cross country runners honored

FRANKLIN COUNTY -- With North Carolina School of Science and Math and Durham School of Arts leading the pack, the Northern Carolina Conference was destined to be one of the state's most competitive Class 2-A leagues in cross country last fall.
The conference lived up to its billing as the Durham schools shined once again.
But Franklinton and Bunn also enjoyed solid campaigns and featured several performers on the All-NCC Cross Country Team.


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Corinth Holders claims crown
Corinth Holders claims crown

BUNN -- Brian Frazier's layup off a pass from Coby Cox with four seconds remaining gave Corinth Holders the lead for good as part of a 55-51 victory over Wakefield in last Wednesday's boys championship game of the Bunn Christmas Tournament.
Wakefield had taken a 51-50 advantage courtesy of an Aaron Burress layup with 14 ticks to play before Corinth Holders coach Chris Davis called time-out to set up a final play.


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DEUCE DEPARTMENT
DEUCE DEPARTMENT

Bunn's Precious Walker drives for two more points for the Ladycats during last Wednesday night's girls championship game of the Bunn Christmas Basketball Tournament.


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HAVING A BALL
HAVING A BALL

Bunn's Precious Walker drives while being defended by Corinth Holders' Maddie Gladwell during last Wednesday's title contest at BHS.


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LITTLE IN THE LANE
LITTLE IN THE LANE

Bunn's I'Kesha Little (left) drives for a basket during last Wednesday's tournament decision over Corinth Holders.


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ON THE LOOKOUT
ON THE LOOKOUT

Bunn's Precious Walker (right) defends Nash Central's Rebecca Speight during Monday's non-conference basketball meeting at the NCHS Gymnasium in Rocky Mount.


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PRODUCING AT THE POINT
PRODUCING AT THE POINT

Franklinton High School point guard Smith Gupton (with ball) runs the offense for the Red Rams as part of Tuesday night's home victory against North Carolina School of Science and Math at the FHS Gymnasium.


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Q FOR TWO
Q FOR TWO

Bunn's Quenten Wright drives for a basket during Monday's road defeat against Nash Central.


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UNDER PRESSURE
UNDER PRESSURE

A Franklinton player tries to gain some space in the paint during Tuesday's home loss against North Carolina School of Science and Math.


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SCHOOLS/EDUCATION

LC's honors list announced

LOUISBURG -- Louisburg College has released the Honors List for fall 2015.
To be named to the Honors List, a student must have completed courses with exemplary marks with at least 12 or more hours of college credit in a given semester and have a semester grade point average between 3.0 and 3.49.


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Dean's list announced at UNC Wilmington

WILMINGTON -- The University of North Carolina at Wilmington released its Dean's List for fall 2015.
The following students made the Dean's List:


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COMMUNITY NEWS

3 arrested on heroin charges

LOUISBURG -- Sheriff's deputies arrested three people on heroin charges.
The afternoon of Jan. 4, authorities seized two dosage units of heroin during an arrest in the 1300 block of N.C. 39 S.
Erica Renee Bottoms, 26, of Elm City, Zachary William Shearin, 27, of Spring Hope, and Walter Owen Massey, 27, of Zebulon, were charged with possession of heroin and drug paraphernalia, according to a police report.


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Murder suspect's plea for move denied
Murder suspect's plea for move denied

LOUISBURG -- A superior court judge recently denied a murder suspect's plea to be housed in Franklin County, suggesting he would be much safer at Central Prison.
Franklinton Police officers arrested Garry Yarborough on July 27, a day after they allege he shot and killed his estranged girlfriend, Tracy Williams, in a grocery store parking lot off U.S. 1.


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<i>County United Way awards $16,000 in education grants</i>
County United Way awards $16,000 in education grants

LOUISBURG -- The United Way of Franklin County presented teachers nearly $16,000 in grants to bolster educational opportunities for Franklin County students.
United Way directors made the presentation last month during a School Board meeting, recognizing 15 teachers and the programs they've installed.
The United Way presented the following grants to:


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USDA Conservation Reserve Program sign up ends Feb. 26

WASHINGTON -- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has reminded farmers and that the next general enrollment period for the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) has begun.
It ends on Feb. 26.
This December also marked the 30th anniversary of CRP, a federally funded program that assists agricultural producers with the cost of restoring, enhancing and protecting certain grasses, shrubs and trees to improve water quality, prevent soil erosion and reduce loss of wildlife habitat.


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CHRISTMAS SPIRIT
CHRISTMAS SPIRIT

Louisburg Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center had visitors to sing Christmas songs from the Kid's Corner Childcare Center recently. "We were glad they invited us. It promoted difference for the children, helping them to better understand 'special needs,' as well as showing compassion for others," said preschool class instructor Tina Holden, in back row at left. Assistant to the class is Barbara Coons (at right, back row).


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Make-A-Wish supporters planning January Joyfest

A Louisburg resident and Make-A-Wish event organizer is hosting a fundraiser at the Mudcats Cattails Restaurant in Zebulon on Jan. 23.
Lara Gardner is part of this year's Make-A-Wish WISH (Women Inspiring Strength & Hope) campaign for the chapter of Make-A-Wish that supports Eastern North Carolina and the January Joyfest fundraiser is designed to raise money to help the organization fulfill wishes.
There will be a live auction featuring a UNC basketball autographed by head coach Roy Williams and the team, a helicopter tour of the Outer Banks, a golf trip to High Meadows Country Club in the NC foothills and other items.


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BUSINESS

GRAND OPENING
GRAND OPENING

Practically Magic Salon held a grand opening celebration. At 810 S. Bickett Blvd. (beside Moss Foods), Louisburg, Practically Magic is a full service salon offering haircuts, hair color, highlights/lowlights, shampoo sets, perms, manicures, pedicures and waxing. Pictured above (l to r) are stylists Michelle Perry, Tammy Dudding and Nancy Ball.


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