Update from the Community Council

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This year The Community Council has been working and researching various topics which impact our community.You can review details by visiting our website or Facebook page .  While we placed several ads in The Rocky Mount Telegram and encourage everyone to purchase the paper to keep abreast of local issues, we want to give you a quick synopsis on what we believe are a few of the biggest issues facing our community at this time.

The City of Rocky Mount has gone radio silent on the “proposed” Event Center.  It seems apparent to us that the consultants are attempting to generate interest from investors and folks who peddle EB-5 funding.  Recently, Fortune magazine wrote a scathing review of EB-5 funding titling the article The dark, disturbing world of the visa-for-sale program.  We encourage the community to contact City Council Members and recommend they read this article. Glens Falls, NY recently placed their 35 year old Civic Center up for auction with minimum bids starting at $1.5 million to no avail.  Is this an omen?

We also discovered a comparison made by the Town of Huntersville, NC.  Huntersville showed Rocky Mount has the greatest number of employees per 1,000 residents out of the top 20 municipalities by population in North Carolina.  They also illustrated that Rocky Mount has one of the highest property tax rates.

In May, we shared our concerns with the Nash County Commissioners regarding the proposed solid waste convenience center fee for all Nash County residents.  Nash County Commissioners ultimately decided against including a solid waste fee in the 2014 – 2015 budget.  Nash County residents saved $500,000 in new and increased fees.

In July, State Auditor Beth Wood released an investigative report on the Town of Tarboro.  This report uncovered many findings of concern.  In this light the Community Council has requested a copy of all expenses paid directly or indirectly on behalf of the managers and the elected officials of The City of Rocky Mount, Edgecombe County and Nash County.  You can review our public records request by going to Expense Request – NC Public Records Request – September 10, 2014.  To learn more about open government laws in North Carolina go to The North Carolina Open Government Coalition sponsored by Elon University School of Communications.

As you can see, we have focused on the community as a whole; Nash, Edgecombe, Nashville, Tarboro and Rocky Mount.

The Community Council’s mission is to be at least one voice that raises questions, offers suggestions, and reminds government of its responsibility to it constituents and of the consequences of its actions.  We want to encourage the general public to be more involved in the process.

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