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The Rhinoceros Times


Vol. XXIII No. 14

© Copyright 2013 The Rhinoceros Times

Greensboro, North Carolina

Thursday, April 4, 2013

County Budget Cycle In Full Swing by Scott D. Yost county editor

Photo by Elaine Hammer

The Easter Bunny visited Peace United Church of Christ on West Market Street Saturday for the traditional Easter egg hunts. He may not look it, but that rabbit must be tired considering all the eggs he had to hide.

The Guilford County Budget Committee met for the second time on Wednesday, March 27, and so far the requests for funding are piling up. The Board of Commissioners has a Republican majority for the first time this century, and the five (Continued on page 48)

City Council Dives Deeper Into Secrecy by john hammer editor

If things progress as they are going now, at this time next year expect the Greensboro City Council meetings to consist of speakers from the floor followed by an announcement of what the City Council has done in secret closed door meetings since the last meeting. Then the council will take a

break to eat the supper provided at taxpayers’ expense and adjourn. Even the agenda will be a redacted before being released to the public. The people will find out what the council did at secret meetings in strangely worded press releases. But because the council will allow Ben Holder, Charles Cherry, Leon Nutez, George

Price Schools Board On Bill by paul C. clark Staff Writer

The Guilford County Board of Education has mounted only a weak and slow defense against a steamroller Republicancontrolled North Carolina General Assembly that filed a slew of bills to make large-scale changes in the state’s public education system. School board member Ed Price raked the school board over

the coals on Thursday, March 28, castigating the board for its fearful and tentative opposition to a bill by state Sen. Trudy Wade that would change the way the school board is elected, almost certainly increasing the number of Republicans on the school board. Price opposed the bill and said no change in the school board’s (Continued on page 43)

Hartzman and Abraham Duke to come to the microphone week after week and say essentially the

Rhino Rumors From staff and wire reports

I keep giving the city great ideas on how to increase business downtown, which the city routinely ignores and instead tries to attract business by raising taxes and

same things they said the week before, the council will claim to be open and transparent. The most interesting City Council meeting of the week was not the Tuesday night, April 2, televised meeting where almost every issue of any import was tabled, continued or not dealt with, but the top secret closed door session held with the Guilford County Board of Commissioners on Monday afternoon, April 1, at the offices of the Greensboro

Partnership, which is what every other city in the country calls the chamber of commerce. A majority of councilmembers was present, which constitutes a quorum and made the meeting in theory an official meeting of the Greensboro City Council, but no notices were sent out as is required by law for an official meeting. The meeting was not open to the public, which is also required by law, and the press was (Continued on page 40)

(Continued on page 2)

Inside this issue

High Point News............ 6 Entertainment Guide...... 9 Puzzles.................. 10, 37 Uncle Orson Reviews....11 Yost Column................ 13 Rhino Real Estate........ 15 Letters to the Editor..... 39 Editorial Cartoon.......... 50 under the hammer....... 51

Photo by Mary Sollecito

In the old days the Easter bunny came in the middle of the night and hid colored eggs all over the yard. On Saturday, there were a whole bunch of Easter bunnies hopping around the downtown at night for BunnyCon, but we didn’t see any of them hiding eggs.

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Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Puppy Brings Back Memories of Dad by john hammer editor

I was thinking about my father when I was carrying my puppy across the street last week. I thought about my father because I don’t think there was ever a time when I crossed the street with him when he didn’t at least try to take hold of my hand. When I was little I found it as comforting as getting down under the covers on a cold night. I didn’t think anything bad could possibly happen to me while I was holding my father’s hand. When I got a little older it was just accepted, although I enjoyed it more than I would admit. As a teenager I, of course, would go to great lengths not to be next to my father when crossing the street because I was mortified at the idea of holding his hand. Sometimes he would grab my elbow, which in my mind was even worse, or my shoulder, which wasn’t so bad. Then, as happens with so many things in life, in my late 20s I got so I didn’t mind. In my 30s I was entertained by the fact that my father still insisted on holding my hand when crossing a street. In my late 30s I got so I liked it, and in my 40s I was pretty much back where we started. I thought it was such a privilege to hold my father’s hand when we crossed the street that I wouldn’t trade it for anything. As a child I knew that our family’s restrictions on crossing the street were more severe than other families, but it wasn’t until I was an older adult that I put two and two together and realized that there was good reason for that. When my father was still a small child growing up in Red Bank, New Jersey, he saw his brother, who was riding a bike across an intersection, get hit and killed by a car. Experiences like that you don’t forget, and 75 years later when you’re crossing the street you reach out and grab the hand of your little boy who happens to be 47 and thinks he’s helping you.

Rumors (Continued from page 1) increasing the cost of running a business downtown. But here is another good idea that would cost the city nearly nothing: The two-block-long parking lot, which is called Commerce Street, is rarely over half full. Make parking free in the northern half of the lot, which is almost always nearly empty. The lot would fill up in no time, helping business at no more cost to the city than the cost of taking up parking meters and printing signs that say “Free Parking.” The city will no doubt need help with those signs because the concept of free parking is new to the city. ---

Downtown Greensboro Inc., an organization that despite the name appears to know nothing about downtown business, supported making bars on windows and doors downtown illegal. Someone attempted to break into the World Headquarters of The Rhinoceros Times Monday night. Tuesday, as I searched our basement for signs of an intruder, I wished I had put bars on that window so I wouldn’t have to worry about some thief hiding in the basement. It’s hard to imagine a downtown organization so out of touch that it doesn’t understand the importance of bars on windows in a downtown. The police do a (Continued on page 6)

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The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Jail Guards Fleeing by Scott D. Yost county editor

It’s not just inmates that the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department is having trouble keeping in the jails – the department is also having a tough time holding onto guards. Guilford County Sheriff BJ Barnes said that a difficult work environment – as well as the fact that a tight timeline for hiring those guards was forced on him by the Board of Commissioners – is to blame for the very high turnover that his department is now seeing. Way before the new jail opened late last summer, Barnes requested that the Sheriff’s Department be allowed to hire 89 guards to staff the new jail, in order to allow time to properly train the new hires and get then acclimated to the job. However, the commissioners decided to save money in the 2011-2012 budget by making the Sheriff’s Department postpone filling the 89 new positions. That did save money on salaries, but, Barnes said, the move is now contributing to the county’s high rate of jail guard turnover. Barnes said that, since Oct. 1, 2011, Guilford County has hired 96 new detention officers. And he added that, during that period, 40 guards have left their jobs. “That’s 41.6 percent,” Barnes said. He added that he’s expecting more departures in the near future. He said

recent hires who can’t take the stress of the job, or those who aren’t performing well, may be gone soon. “I’m looking at one right now that will make it 41 people,” Barnes said this week. According to Barnes, some take the job and then quit after the first day. He added that some new guards come to work and then don’t show up after a few weeks, and others, he said, are let go because they can’t handle the work environment. “It’s a tough job,” Barnes said. “It’s not one everybody can do.” Barnes said his officers on the street have to deal with dangerous people on a periodic basis, but jail guards must deal with them in a highly confined environment all day every day. The sheriff said inmates do whatever they can to get under the guard’s skin. “They throw feces on them, urinate on them, cuss at them and spit on them,” Barnes said. He said one group of 18 guards hired in a very rushed process has been particularly disappointing for him, with a large number of defections from that group. Barnes said he wishes the commissioners had let him have the guards earlier in the process so they could have had more training prior to being thrown in the job. “I asked them to let them train before the new jail opening, but they didn’t want (Continued on page 42)

Dearth Of Diversity On City Committee by Alex JakubseN Staff Writer

The seven member committee appointed by Greensboro City Manager Denise Roth to consult on closing about $2 million of a supposed $7.1 million gap in the 20132014 budget lacks some of the diversity you would expect on such a committee. Of the seven members of the Greensboro Residents’ Efficiency and Accountability Work Team (GREAT), two are not residents of Greensboro. Steve Allen, a former North Carolina Superior Court judge, lives in Pleasant Garden. Ivan Canada, the former director of the Guilford Green Foundation, is registered to vote in unincorporated Guilford County. The group has been asked to identify cost savings in the Human Relations, Library and Parks and Recreation departments. According to former Deputy Guilford County Manager John Shore, a member of the committee, the group will give its recommendations to Roth sometime in early April. Roth said she hand picked the members and there was no public announcement or

application process. She also said that she had not considered the political affiliations of the committee members she chose, and said she was surprised to learn she had handpicked seven Democrats. Roth said that if she appoints a similar committee in the future she would use a more formal process and include more members. “It wasn’t a perfect process but it wasn’t meant to be,” she said. Roth said in the future there would be a more deliberate, open process. She said that Greensboro councilmembers could also be involved in appointing members in the future. Roth said that in the selection of the committee members she sought to find representatives of the private sector, academia and some of the affected departments. She said that Dennis Barry, the former president and CEO of the Moses Cone Health System, and Scott Fleming, the president of Replacements Ltd., were selected to represent the private sector on the committee. Cone is a nonprofit corporation with a huge endowment. (Continued on page 42)

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Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Republicans Are Unshackling Charters by john hammer editor

It is somewhat astounding how much liberals hate charter schools. A bill that would fix a lot of the problems the Democrats built into the charter school system was introduced in the state Senate by Sen. Jerry Tillman, a retired school administrator from Archdale who represents Randolph and Moore counties. State Rep. Jon Hardister from Greensboro sponsored a companion bill in the state House. Liberals hate charter schools so much that when the bills were introduced to revise the way charter schools are governed in North Carolina The Washington Post wrote about it and the article wasn’t very complimentary. The Washington Post doesn’t make a habit of writing about education in North Carolina since not many of its readers have children a state away in the North Carolina public school system. The Democrats in the North Carolina state government gave in on allowing charter schools in 1996 but since then have done everything they could to make it as difficult as possible to open and operate a charter school. The most obvious, but far from only, attempt to make things hard was the arbitrary 100-school limit put on the number of charter schools in the state. Another was to put charter schools under the supervision of the North Carolina

Board of Education, made up of people who are not fans of charter schools. Politically the move by the Democrats to make it difficult had the potential to be brilliant because if a lot of charter schools failed then the Democrats could say – see we tried it and it doesn’t work – and shut down the program. The problem was that the state now has quite a few successful, well-respected charter schools, and more are on the way. One of those successful and expanding

charter schools is the Phoenix Academy in High Point, and co-founder Paul Norcross has been on the front lines of the charter school movement, serving on the state advisory board that will be disbanded by the new charter school legislation. Norcross said, “It’s a vey good bill. Both of them are fantastic.” Norcross said about the current state advisory board, “We are nothing but unpaid clerical staff.” Norcross noted people complained about

the education students were receiving in charter schools and noted that charter school “students have to take the same tests.” He said, “We have to teach the exact same core curriculum as the traditional public schools.” He added, “We have to be audited every year.” That’s an interesting statement because the state legislature is currently looking into (Continued on page 40)

Schools Option IHM Property by paul C. clark Staff Writer

The Guilford County Board of Education, effective Tuesday, April 2, spent $5,000 to buy a purchase option on the old Immaculate Heart of Mary (IHM) Catholic School on the southwest corner of the intersection of Montlieu Avenue and North Centennial Street in High Point. Guilford County Schools is considering buying the old IHM school as a new home for The Academy at Central, a small high school that is in the Tomlinson building on the High Point Central High School property. Central supporters have asked the


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school board to move the academy to free up classrooms for Central, where students are sitting on the floor and on radiators. The school’s purchase option, which lasts until the end of 2013, would allow it to buy the Catholic school building for $1.75 million – well under the church’s asking price of $2.1 million. The option document, signed by Bishop Peter J. Jugis of the Catholic Diocese of Charlotte, allows Guilford County Schools to extend the option until April 30, 2014 by paying an extension fee of $2,500. The building is available because IHM Catholic Church is building a new, 400-student school on the same property as its current church building. The new IHM Parish Life and Education Center will be on the church campus at the intersection of Johnson Street and Skeet Club Road. The old IHM Catholic School is operating as a school and will be until June 30, when it moves into the new building. According to members of the church, the school has been well maintained. If the old IHM school is in good condition, it is a bargain for Guilford County Schools, which doesn’t build schools for less than 10 times the $1.7 million price. “It’s definitely in excellent condition, because we’re still teaching children today,” said Matt Thiel, a member of the

IHM parish capital campaign cabinet. “It’s my understanding that Guilford County Schools will have to make some modifications that aren’t necessarily required, but they chose to do. But they can move in and use it right away.” The IHM school property includes 3.5 acres at 605 and 614 Barbee St., including the original IHM Catholic Church building, the school and a parking lot. The school has a gym and a cafeteria – features The Academy at Central now has to share with High Point Central. Thiel said IHM Catholic Church is glad to offer the property to Guilford County Schools for use as a school, rather than to another buyer for another use. “My understanding is that they have to get funding from the Guilford County Board of Commissioners, but my hope is that the Guilford County commissioners will see it,” he said. “It’s been educating Guilford County students since 1947. The facility could be sold for anything, and of course that’s fine for us, but the idea that it could be used to continue to improve the lives of the children of Guilford County, we just couldn’t be happier about that.” The option agreement is signed by Bishop Jugis because in the Roman Catholic Church, unlike in other organizations, the (Continued on page 49)

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

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Commissioners Just Say No To Gilbert by Scott D. Yost county editor

On Friday, April 5, Guilford County is expected to file a motion to dismiss the lawsuit brought by former Guilford County Elections Director George Gilbert, who has asked the county for more than $42,000 in back pay for his last three years in the position, to compensate him for what he claims are three years when his salary was illegally low. Late last year, Gilbert hired Greensboro attorney Seth Cohen, of Smith, James, Rowlett & Cohen, and, two months ago, on Wednesday, Jan. 30, Gilbert filed suit against the county. By law, Guilford County must respond to that suit by April 5, and Guilford County Attorney Mark Payne said this week that the county’s next move will be to offer a more detailed response to the claim – as well as a motion to dismiss, a motion for summary judgement or both. “It’s not one or the other,” Payne said. “We could file both.” The expectation is that the county will file the motion to dismiss and that may be followed by a motion for summary judgement later. Payne said Guilford County needs to file a motion to dismiss by April 5. However, a motion for summary judgement could be filed later. Both motions would call for the judge to decide against Gilbert’s claim

without a trial. Payne said the motion to dismiss “takes the complaint as it is and the law as it is” and proposes that that is everything a judge needs to decide against Gilbert. “It says to the judge, we think you can decide the issue without putting on any evidence,” Payne said. Payne added that Guilford County may also file a motion for summary judgement – a motion that would bring in some additional evidence, but, like a motion to dismiss, would call for a judge to decide against Gilbert without going to trial. Motions for summary judgement typically come after the discovery phase of the proceedings and before the actual trial. Gilbert said that, whether the county files a motion to dismiss the case or files that motion and a call for summary judgement, the message is clear. “Either way, they are telling me, ‘No,’” Gilbert said. Payne said he has taken Gilbert’s charges against the county into consideration and has discussed the case with the commissioners in closed session. He said that, every step of the way, it’s the Board of Commissioners that makes the decision. “I’m their attorney,” Payne said. “I give them my legal opinion but they make the final call.” Cohen said that attorneys routinely throw

in a motion to dismiss at the beginning of the process, whether there’s any grounds for the request or not. He said he’s very interested to see Payne’s answer to the charges later this week. The battle between Gilbert and the commissioners began late last year, on Thursday, Dec. 20, when a hand-delivered letter from Cohen to the county requested Guilford County pay Gilbert a lump sum of $42,103, which, the letter stated, Gilbert considers a “reasonable resolution to this unfortunate problem.” The letter stated that that sum is the total of a cash settlement of $35,298 in back pay that Gilbert is entitled to, plus retroactive adjustments to Gilbert’s 401(k) plan and related benefits he would have gotten if his salary had been at an adequate level over the last three years. Gilbert, who retired on Friday, March 1, was making $99,319 a year as the county’s elections director when he stepped down. Cohen’s initial letter said that, after an “exhaustive review” by Gilbert, it became clear to Gilbert that his salary was not commensurate with the salary paid to directors in other counties, and the Guilford County Board of Commissioners, therefore, was not in compliance with N.C.G.S.163-35(c) – a state statute that calls for elections director pay to be in line with the pay of other elections directors in



similar counties across the state. This week, Gilbert said he was unaware of the county’s intention to file to dismiss until asked about it, but he said he has a great deal of confidence in his case since the hard numbers paint such a clear picture. According to Gilbert, when he took the job as Guilford County’s elections director in 1988 for less than $30,000 a year, he was one of the lowest paid department heads in Guilford County government. He said that, at that time, in many counties across the state, the elections director was thought of basically as a clerk. “When I took the job I didn’t get a parking space,” Gilbert said. “I was in the park-as-you-can lot.” He said that the attitude of treating elections directors as second-class employees didn’t do justice to the vital importance of elections directors and the need to have a highly capable person in that position. He said that, in the past, in some counties, the pay for elections directors has been nearly half what some other department directors were making. “Times have changed,” Gilbert said. “Elections directors are no longer at the bottom of the totem pole.” He said that former Guilford County Managers Hector Rivera and Roger (Continued on page 42) MARCH 14 – APRIL 15, 2013

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Thursday, April 4, 2013






The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro HIGH POINT



Banks Climb Out Of City Loan Pool by paul C. clark Staff Writer

A $9.7 million loan pool created by the High Point City Council in September 2010 to make loans available to small businesses in High Point’s core neighborhoods failed because the six banks that teamed up with the city to create the program would not renew it. The idea was for High Point to kick in $3.9 million it got from the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) to the loan pool, providing 40 percent of its funds. High Point’s bank partners were to provide $5.8 million, or 60 percent of the pool. The lesson in the loan pool, if there is one, is that businesses are not going to magically spring up in High Point’s older core neighborhoods until they are revitalized – and that will require businesses. The old core of High Point is trapped in a chicken-and-egg dilemma that not even cheap money will allow it to escape, at least in the current economy. The High Point City Council on Monday, April 1 voted unanimously to remove the Section 108 loan guarantee money from the loan pool and lend $1.35 million to help Wynnefield Properties of Jamestown build the Addington Ridge apartments development, a second complex for low-

income families on two acres across the street from the company’s Admiral Pointe apartments retirement complex near the corner of Admiral and Samet drives. The City Council in April 2010 gave a $500,000 loan to Wynnefield Properties to build the 56-unit Admiral Pointe development, over fierce opposition from some councilmembers who objected to siting the development in the mostly commercial neighborhood in northeast High Point. Before Monday’s meeting, High Point Director of Community Development and Housing Mike McNair wrote a memo to Assistant City Manager Randy McCaslin, proposing to move the HUD money now intended for the failed loan pool. McNair wrote, “The one year agreement with local banking institutions expired and the agreement was not renewed due to prevailing economic conditions and nonperformance of the loan pool.” Translation: Few people applied and banks aren’t lending money for developments in run-down High Point neighborhoods, even with government backing. And developers aren’t starting businesses that qualify for the loans. McNair said, bluntly, “The banking partners refused to renew it.”

McNair proposed authorizing High Point City Manager Strib Boynton to apply to HUD for permission to allow the use of the Section 108 money for public developments, allowing the City of High Point to finance tax-credit developments, the first of which would be the $1.35 million loan for the 58-unit Addington Ridge. “High Point has a great unmet need for safe, sanitary and decent affordable housing for its low to moderate-income residents,” McNair wrote in his memo to McCaslin. “This development will continue the City’s commitment to help address this need.” McNair said High Point has 2,283 families on its waiting list for housing assistance. The 58 units of Addington Ridge would range from one- to three-bedroom units. The apartments would rent for between $250 and $650. McNair said High Point will work with the NC Department of Health and Human Services to help make units available for people with handicaps. The City of High Point had to find another use for the Section 108 HUD money before the federal grant’s Sept. 30, 2015 expiration date.

The 2010 proposal by Wynnefield Properties to build the Admiral Pointe retirement complex exposed a deep divide in the City Council and resulted in an extended argument that lasted through consecutive meetings of the City Council and its Finance Committee. The result was a 5-to-4 victory by supporters of the development, who accused opponents of waging a “not in my backyard” campaign against the project. The opponents for their part accused supporters of throwing money at a project without due diligence. Admiral Pointe provides units to residents 55 years old and older who are on Social Security. It is privately managed by Wynnefield Properties and is not a Section 8 federally subsidized project. A federal stimulus loan and corporate tax credits reduced the cost of building the development so that Wynnefield Associates could keep rents low for the retirees. McNair argued on Monday that Wynnefield Properties had, with Admiral Pointe, proven that it could put a lowincome complex together.


(Continued from page 2)

great job of patrolling downtown but they can’t be everywhere at once, and it only takes a minute to break a window and get in a building. That is if there are no bars on the window. --According to the News & Record, giving High Point Road and Lee Street one name will unite the community. I was thinking about this trying to figure out how changing the name of two streets is going to unite the community and I think I know what they meant. Right now you have two separate communities, one that says, “I know somebody who was (shot, stabbed, robbed, assaulted, mugged or killed) on Lee Street.” And another group that says, “I know somebody who was (shot, stabbed, robbed, assaulted, mugged or killed) on High Point Road. “If the name is changed to Robbie Perkins Boulevard, as is the true intention of the majority of the City Council, then the groups will unite and they will feel a togetherness because they will both be saying, “I know someone who was (shot, stabbed, robbed, assaulted, mugged or killed) on Robbie Perkins Boulevard.” TECAN&R is right this time; it will unite the community --In Under the Hammer I wrote about the fact that The New York Times doesn’t know what Christians celebrate at Easter. It turns out the News & Record doesn’t

know the difference between the Old and New Testaments in the Bible. TECAN&R accuses Board of Commissioners chaplain Ben Chavis, who gives the invocation at commissioner meetings, of saying prayers that lean toward “explicit Christianity.” Then reporter Joe Killian gives three examples of explicitly Christian prayers. One is a quote from Deuteronomy, one a quote from Psalms and one a quote from Romans. Someone at TECAN&R should know that Deuteronomy and Psalms are Jewish texts adopted by Christians. Romans is Christian, but there is nothing explicitly Christian about the quote, “the good, the perfect, the acceptable” is the quote. It would appear that Killian might want to do some basic research on religion before he writes again about what is and what is not explicitly Christian. --Last week we ran a beep about a former tax director being behind on his taxes. The beep didn’t name the former tax director and we didn’t either. The former tax director was Jenks Crayton, whose name was in the daily paper for being behind on his taxes. Both other former tax directors, Roger Cotten and Francis Kinlaw, are like most residents of Guilford County and are current on their property taxes. --In an article last week about the new business park land being rezoned by High (Continued on page 43)

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Page 7

Schools Settle Oak Ridge For Peanuts by paul C. clark Staff Writer

Guilford County Schools, which spent at least $1.5 million to remedy mold and other environmental problems at Oak Ridge Elementary School and to move Oak Ridge students to other schools, has settled with Clinton E. Gravely and Associates, the architecture firm that designed the school, for $100,000. According to an agreement between Guilford County Schools and Clinton E. Gravely and Associates, Gravely and Associates was to have paid the $100,000 to the school board by Monday, April 1. The $100,000 from Clinton Gravely and Associates brings to $160,000 the amount the school board has recovered of its costs at Oak Ridge, a 1920s school that was rebuilt and expanded in 2005, and which was troubled for years by reports of leaks and mold. Those reports continued for four years, along with increasing complaints of health problems from students and teachers. Guilford County Schools closed Oak Ridge Elementary from June 2009 to April 2011 and divided its students among Oak Ridge Military Academy, Colfax Elementary School and Pearce Elementary School. The health problems reported at Oak Ridge divided parents, some of whom said their children had severe mold-related

symptoms and some of whom thought the environmental mystery dragged on too long or was partly a result of mass hysteria. The investigation into Oak Ridge’s environmental mystery eventually generated a146-page report by the Turner Group, an environmental consulting group, and inspections by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), part of the US Centers for Disease Control. The school board eventually decided that Oak Ridge, after years of remediation, was safe – and was apparently right, as there have been no public health complaints at the school since. Although the environmental mystery at Oak Ridge was ended, if not solved, legal battles over who was to blame for the problems – and expenses – at the school have lingered. The school board in September 2009 sued Lyon Construction of King, North Carolina, the contractor on the 2005 renovation project, in Guilford County Superior Court, over what the school system claimed were breaches in the contract between the school system and the contractor. The school system also sued Federal Insurance Company, Lyon Construction’s insurer. Lyon Construction President John Barrow denied the allegations. The school board, at about the same time, signed a tolling agreement with Gravely

and Associates. Tolling agreements allow the parties to a potential lawsuit to waive their right to claim that the suit should be dismissed due to the expiration of a statute of limitations, and are generally a sign that the parties are working toward a settlement. The school board eventually settled with both companies. On Feb. 10, 2012, it accepted a settlement of all claims against Lyon Construction, and Stat Constructors LP, a subcontractor that Lyon Construction had sued. Lyon Construction paid the school board $59,000. Stat Constructors LP paid the school board $1,000. The $160,000 the school board has recovered from the three companies is a small fraction of the $1.5 million it spent resolving the issues – a sign that the cause of, and liability for, the problems were not clear enough for the school board to hang the costs on any particular party. No responsibility for the Oak Ridge problems was assigned to any of the parties in the Lyon Construction settlement agreement or that with Gravely and Associates. The Gravely and Associates agreement with the school board specifies that neither of the parties admits to any liability. The agreement states, “Each of the Parties agrees that it is entering into this Agreement to settle the Dispute solely as a business decision for the purposes of avoiding the

further cost of litigation with respect to the Dispute.” The school board’s agreement with Lyon Construction, Stat Constructors and Federal Insurance Co. states, “This Agreement is entered into in connection with the compromise and settlement of disputed claims and the execution of this Agreement does not constitute and shall not be construed as an admission of fault, liability or wrongdoing by any of the parties.” In both agreements, each side agreed to pay its own attorney’s fees. With no one accepting liability for the Oak Ridge problems, taxpayers are stuck with most of the cost of the remediation and the relocation of students, and parents and teachers at Oak Ridge have no ultimate answer to the cause of the health issues they reported. Oak Ridge parents and employees said for years that there were problems with the building project, with Guilford County Schools and its construction managers, Lyon Construction, and Gravely and Associates all contributing to the problems. Teachers and parents reported leaks, wet floors and strange sewage smells since even before its reopening after the 2005 renovation. Interviews with Oak Ridge Elementary employees and Guilford County Schools (Continued on page 43)


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Page 8

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

The Sound of the Beep What follows has been transcribed from the answering machine tape on our comment line 273-0898. We edit out what is required by the laws of the state, of good taste and of good sense. The limit on phone calls is one minute and each caller may make up to two calls per week. If you have something to say, call our comment line at 273-0898 and start talking at The Sound of the Beep.

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Well, it’s getting worse in the Middle East all the time. Obama is not doing one thing about the pipeline. How much longer will these Democrats that are decent people let him go on without rising up against him and saying what we’ve done in voting him back in is wrong? If a man’s got enough sense to get out of bed and tie his shoes and put his clothes on, he ought to have enough sense to know he’s made a mistake of voting him back in. %%% Yeah, I’m calling in regard to the comment that Commissioner Bruce Davis made about the fellow applying for the county manager’s job having only one strike against him and that being that he’s black. I’m just wondering if Bruce Davis is going to be the new Skip Alston, because every time something good was going on, or even bad was going on, Skip had to play the race card. It just looks like Bruce Davis is getting off to a good start. Thank you very much for your time. Bye. %%% What’s the big deal with allowing same-sex marriages? Come on, this is 2013. We allow illegal aliens, undocumented aliens, into the US that have no work here, but we allow them. We’re giving them driver’s licenses. So, come on, people. Let’s get liberal and stuff there. You know, they’re not hurting nobody. Thank you. Have a great day. %%% Wouldn’t it be nice if the Democrats just left the country? Since their vision of America, and their moral-less way of life that they want to cram down everybody’s throats is such a threat to the decent people of America, it would be so nice if they would just find another country to live out their lifestyle. The non-value system that they want to push on everybody is absolutely absurd. Like I said, wouldn’t it be nice if the Democrats would just leave the country? Thank you. %%% Good morning. I just read in the paper where they’re talking about changing the name of High Point Road. I mean, what’s the benefit or the purpose behind it? I don’t work for the city, but I understand a lot of city employees haven’t had raises in a couple of years. And how would you feel to be out there putting up all those signs, taking down signs, putting up signs and all that, and you hadn’t had a raise in a couple of years. I mean that’s a waste of money. I don’t know about Guilford County. I’ve lived here all my life. But, come one, to change all those signs, how much is that going to cost me and the rest of the taxpayers? Have a good day. %%% About the name change of High Point Road, would changing the name be better than changing the name of a leopard? Would that get rid of its spots? Me thinks they need to clean up High Point Road before they start trying to change names. Thanks. Bye. %%% Mr. Greensboro here. Thank goodness we kept that low-class store, comma, Trader’s Joe’s, out of Greensboro. I saw the other day that they are advertising a really good $3 wine. Greensboro people don’t drink $3 wine. Can you imagine someone serving $3 wine to their guests before going out to our new performing arts center? Ghastly. Who cares if Trader Joe’s is the number two rated grocery store in America? This is Greensboro for goodness sake. %%% In Psalm 14:1 we read, the fool says in his heart there is no God. So the atheists have a day of celebration on Monday, which is April Fool’s Day. So happy atheist’s day to all you non-believers. You are fools. Yes, in reference to the Greensboro’s Farmers Market running off yet another long time farmer from Guilford County, Mike Faucette. It’s a shame that the new management is determined to run out and drive away the old farmers who have supported that market for several generations. And it’s certainly interesting when they visit these farmers’ farms they take other vendors with them to say, oh, they’re not selling the things they’re growing. So, to me, it’s (Continued on page 10)

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Page 9

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Page 10

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

The New York Times Crossword Puzzle

No. 0331

SPECIAL FEATURES By Caleb Madison / Edited by Will Shortz


1 One-on-ones

6 Justice Dept. branch 9 Gyllenhaal of “Brokeback Mountain”

13 1983 film debut of Bill Maher 18 Documentarian Morris

1 9 I t ’s f o u n d i n l a m e r

20 Cerberus guards its gates, in myth 2 1 Wi p e o u t 22 Lower

23 Movie about … an intense blinking contest? 25 It comes from the heart

26 Steaming beverage

27 Atoms in some light bulbs 28 … a housecleaner? 30 … a sled racer?

3 2 C h i l d r e n ’s a u t h o r Silverstein 3 3 “ Yi k e s ! ”

3 4 “ Yo u b e t c h a ”

RELEASE DATE: 4/7/2013

3 7 Ye a r “ T h e Wo n d e r f u l Wi z a r d of Oz” came out

3 8 C h i n a ’s C h i a n g _ _ _ shek 41 Part of a pound

44 … a bee during a downpour? 51 Up

For any three answers, call from a touch-tone phone: 1-900-285-5656, $1.49 each minute; or, with a credit card, 1-800814-5554.

53 Part of E.M.S.: A b b r.

1 0 0 … a k i n g ’s brilliance?

5 4 Wa l l S t . J o u r n a l listings

108 … a harvester?

5 6 … a c t o r J a s o n ’s f a n club?

11 4 W h o w r o t e “Wherever Law e n d s , Ty r a n n y begins”

55 Handles

59 Least volatile, perhaps 60 Some patches

61 Expert despite little training 63 Brainy person, and proud of it

11 2 G e t h o t

11 3 K i n d o f b e a n

11 5 H i d d e n D V D feature … which can be found, l i t e r a l l y, i n t h e answers to the italicized clues

64 One might have a ball

11 7 C i t y s o u t h o f Brigham City

67 Senate vote

11 9 N o n s t o p

6 6 P u b l i c h e a l t h a g c y. 6 8 Ve r d a n t

72 Device Professor X wears over his head in “X-Men” 74 Pop singer Bedingfield

76 Low-maintenance potted plant

8 0 … J e r r y G a rc i a ’s b a n d ’s p o r t r a i t s ? 84 ___ water 85 Air

8 6 I t ’s w e s t o f t h e International Date Line 87 High clouds

8 8 … a p a re n t ’s e d i c t s ? 92 ___ Zone

93 “Gag me!”

94 Certain extraction 95 One-named R&B singer 96 Pitches

98 Stripped

Beep (Continued from page 8) a competitive thing like maybe why other farmers are traveling with the manager out to the farm to agree that they are selling things they aren’t growing. Is that maybe a conflict of interest, or just trying to get a monopoly in the farmers’ market, that and the hippy farmers? So, let’s support Mike Faucette and they don’t keep…. %%% They say the sign of somebody having not good sense is doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different answer. Well, this is Sunday. Saturday Obama flew out to Illinois, Chicago, or somewhere to pour some more money into the green energy. Now, we’ve got green energy places stacked up real tight on a piece of notebook paper that’s went broke. And, of course, he says he’s going to take the money for drilling oil and that’s how he’s going to pay for it. The healthcare bill stacked up is taller than Obama is. Looks like people would have enough sense to know – I can’t call. I called yesterday. %%%

11 8 P e p t i c _ _ _

120 Lucy of “Kill Bill” 121 Object

122 Wherewithal 123 Part of N.B.

124 Back-to-school mo. 125 Laurel and Lee Down

1 Starts of some games 2 ___ Outfitters, clothing retailer

3 Mythological figure often depicted holding a kithara

4 1945 Best Picture w i n n e r, w i t h “ T h e ” 5 Album holder 6 Evaluate

7 Prefix with fluoride 8 Recurring Stephen King antagonist Randall ___ 9 Vi s e p a r t s

10 ___ Lovelace, computer pioneer

11 “ T h e Wa y Yo u L o o k To n i g h t ” c o m p o s e r 12 De bene ___ (legal phrase) 13 Music genre of Possessed and Deicide

1 4 H o l l y w o o d ’s R u s s e l l 1 5 Tw o - t i m e E m m y winning actress for “ Ta x i ” 16 Observatory subj. 17 Bill

20 English king who was a son of Wi l l i a m t h e Conqueror 24 Smelt ___

29 Noted American w r i t e r i n Yi d d i s h 3 1 S i g n s o ff o n

35 Computer used to predict the 1952 presidential election

36 Chemical dropper

37 The 57-Down, e.g. 39 Supports

4 0 M . I . T. p a r t : A b b r.



















44 52

















62 67

68 74











100 110
















38 50

































33 41






92 97
















41 Airplane area 42 Sentient

43 Big snapper?

45 More wound up

4 6 Wo r l d b a n k i n g o rg . 47 Prefix with noir 48 [I’m not happy about this …]

49 Like some stockings and baseball games 50 Gridiron figure

52 Music related to punk rock

57 Aconcagua setting

Yes, can somebody tell me what the City of Greensboro car is doing out in Rockingham County 5:30 in the morning driving around through the streets all over? Do they live out here and use a company vehicle to go back and forth to Greensboro? What a waste of taxpayer money. But the car is riding around at 5:30 in the morning. What’s he looking for, a little action? Taxpayers be aware. %%% BJ, BJ, BJ. What happened? They broke out of your new jail that you wanted built with all of taxpayers’ money. Millions and millions of dollars. Where were your guards, sleeping? Who’s ultimately responsible? You are. What are you going to do? Thank you. Have a nice day. %%% Editor’s Note: It was the first jailbreak for Sheriff BJ Barnes, but it was not from his new jail. It was from the High Point jail. %%% I want to know what the status is of getting the state employees retiring list printed. You were trying to get it under the Freedom

58 Fund

59 Just what the doctor ordered? 6 2 Vi t u p e r a t e 65 Darken 66 Nook

6 8 We e k l y b a r promotion, maybe 69 ___ manual 70 Exactly

71 Allowed to enter 7 2 Wa s n ’t e x a c t i n g 73 Pond fish

75 Sam Spade, e.g., for short

8 9 C i t y S S E o f 11 7 Across

77 Once again

9 1 Yi e l d t o w e a r i n e s s

76 Île de la ___

78 Solo companion 79 Slew

81 Subject of the Pentagon Papers, informally 8 2 S u g a r s u ff i x

8 3 Wo r d a t t h e e n d o f many French films 8 5 F r. t i t l e

of Information Act. I hope you can get it. I think the taxpayers have a right to know what we’re paying retirees, and it should be a matter of public record. So, I hope you get it and print it soon. Thank you. %%% Yes, Steely Dan Fan Man. I agree wholeheartedly with Mr. John Pugh’s letter in the March 14 issue. And also Pat McCrory thinks he needs to raise his cabinet members’ salaries to equal that of these high-ranking bigwigs in corporations who are already grossly overpaid, I submit that some of these people maybe ought to quit living beyond their means. And, you know, live with a reasonable salary, something like what a normal person would make. And if it’s not good enough, let them go get in the unemployment line. All right, thank you. %%% According to President Obama and the speaker of the house, we do not have a fiscal crisis. Yet, military veterans’ educational benefits, White House tours, military training, and US border security programs have been reduced. Federal prisoners have

90 Son-of-a-gun 97 Stations

99 Poet Conrad 101 Mess up

102 Ones who wrote in the Ogham alphabet 103 New Mexico State athlete 104 Helping hand, paradoxically

1 0 5 Wo r l d p o w e r h o u s e in cricket 106 Knoxville sch. 107 Fake-book material 108 Down

109 Part of a play 11 0 M a n y a g e s 111 i P o d _ _ _

11 2 H o m e o f Ty p h o n , in myth 11 6 _ _ _ f o r l i f e

been released. How could this be? Or do our lying eyes deceive? Obama promised to transform the US, now he’s keeping his word. %%% Yes, I’d like to know what the deal is about voters having to be required to have a valid picture ID. If you’re 16 years and older, and you do not have a valid picture ID, there is something wrong. You are hiding something, and I just don’t get it. I don’t understand it. Talking about it is going to hurt the poor, or the elderly, or African Americans, I don’t understand it. You can’t go out and buy a couch without having a valid picture ID. So, someone needs to, please, explain to me why everybody is – the Democrats especially – so bent out of shape requiring people to have picture IDs to vote. I don’t get it. Never will get it. %%% This world has become so under the watchful eye of Big Brother that eventually we are going to microscope ourselves out of existence. Just you wait and see. (Continued on page 49)

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Page 11

Uncle Orson Reviews Everything


A Late Quartet, Ulysses Grant MASON PLUMLEE

by orson scott card

It may be that the best thing I ever wrote was a short story called “Unaccompanied Sonata.” Early in my career, when this story about a tortured musician – literally maimed because of his disobedience to the rules of a utopian society – missed winning a Hugo award by a hair, I despaired of ever winning, because I didn’t think I’d ever write anything that good again. As far as I know, I haven’t. Because the main character is a composer and performer, the story speaks especially strongly to musicians, though of course music stands for any intense human enterprise. Soon after it appeared in Omni magazine, it attracted a flurry of interest from people who wanted to make it into a movie. I had option feelers from people associated with Mick Jagger, Steven Sondheim ... and even though each is, in his own area, an accomplished musician, I still had one fundamental question: Really? You think you can write this music? Because there’s a reason for making the character a musician – I don’t have to create his oh-so-brilliant work. Even Ayn Rand, making Howard Roark an architect, had to describe his buildings, and alas, they are now very dated. Very Frank Lloyd Wright “modern.” With music, though, readers know that it can’t really be recreated in fiction, merely referred to. But in a movie, the music has to exist. When I tell you in the story that people come from thousands of miles to hear Christian Haroldsen’s nature-based synth music, or from dozens of miles to hear him improvise jazz on a honky-tonk piano, or learn his folksongs and are moved by them, you can believe it. In the movie, though, somebody has to compose that music, those songs; somebody has to perform it. And then you have to believe that people would respond

that strongly to music that you have actually heard. If the music composed for the film is not utterly brilliant, will you believe the rest of the story? Will you care? Will the movie even work? The same is true (and more so) for my novel Songmaster. After those two pieces, I pretty much left music alone in my fiction. But these two works are the ones would-be filmmakers most often ask about. And my answer is always, “Tell me who’s going to write the music, and then we’ll talk.” This isn’t the normal situation in filmmaking. The elements that make a movie’s funding work are usually star, director and/or writer, in that order. But I don’t care whom you cast as Christian Haroldsen in “Unaccompanied Sonata.” If the music isn’t breathtakingly, heart-stoppingly good, there is no movie. So I wasn’t optimistic when I was approached by a producer who was working with a writer/director named Yaron Zilberman. I gave my standard answer – who’s your composer? – and was told that they wanted to talk to me, but first I should watch Zilberman’s first fictional feature, A Late Quartet. Ah. A musical theme. There’s a perverse logic to the idea that somebody whose first feature was A Late Quartet should want his next to be Unaccompanied Sonata. Knowing nothing at all about the movie, my wife and I sat down one evening, a couple of days before my phone meeting with the producer and the director, and watched A Late Quartet. It was a 2012 independent film about which I had heard nothing. Which meant that nobody had picked it up as Oscar bait. Yet in many ways it is head and shoulders better than anything on the Oscar ballot from last year. Not because there weren’t some wonderful films on that ballot, including the winner. But because A Late Quartet is a breathtakingly powerful film. If I tell you the storyline, it’ll just sound

like a soap opera about four musicians who have spent their adult lives performing as a string quartet together. Now they’re preparing to perform for the last time, since one of them has Parkinson’s disease and VS will never be able to play again at the level of competence his RICHARD own musical sensibility HOWELL requires. My wife and I both know and care a great deal about music, having performed and conducted music all our adult lives. VS So I can’t say whether this movie will be GUILFORD HIGH as compelling to non-musicians as it was@ SOUTHEAST GREENSBORO to us. ALL STARS 3-POINT GREENSBORO, NC CURRY Yet I believeSETH it will. The relationshipsSLAM CONTESTS HALFTIME among them are human, and everyoneDUNK APRIL 11TH 2013 @ 7:30PM can understand and care; the pursuit ofDOORSTHURS, OPEN @ 6GUILFORD GAME HIGH STARTS @ 7:30 @ SOUTHEAST SCHOOL perfection in performance is the maguffin,GENERAL ADMISSION - $10 $12 | VIP - $50 but it could as easily be sports or business, $10 presale | $12 at the door politics or war. TICKETS AVAILABLE AT THE FOLLOWING OUTLETS: If it were war, this movie would be Southeast Guilford High School (Greensboro) Patton; if it were sports, it would be The Greensboro Batting Center (Greensboro) Southeast Guilford Middle School (Greensboro) Slam Dunk Contest & 3-Point Contest @ Halftime Natural; if it were business, it would be The Social Network. ORDER TICKETS ONLINE The cast of this movie tells you a great WWW.CAROLINABARNSTORMING.COM deal about it. With a writer/director no one DEXTER OR TO ORDER TICKETS BY PHONE DIAL: STRICKLAND actors had heard of, these non-musician 704-246-3816 (Continued on page 12) visit us on Facebook







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Page 12

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Uncle Orson (Continued from page 11) read the script and understood that this was going to be something extraordinary. They worked obsessively to learn the fingering so that as you watch the movie, most of the time the actors themselves can be seen to play the notes you are hearing. This is far harder to bring off than the live singing in Les Miserables. But that is technical; what really surprised me is that each of the actors gave the performance of their lives. Christopher Walken as the musician losing his art is moving and beautiful; this is far from the eccentric parts that have marked his career; you have to look all the way back to The Deer Hunter to see him with such personal depth and beauty. I have occasionally liked Philip Seymour Hoffman; he always does a good job with the parts he plays, but mostly he is offered or chooses to play roles that I find repellant. Not in A Late Quartet; his character could have been pathetic, but because Hoffman plays his deep decency, he rises to the tragic. I have never enjoyed a performance by Catherine Keener, because she always plays cold, repellant characters. In this movie she burns with an inner fire that moved me. Mark Ivanir, an actor I don’t remember seeing (though I’ve seen movies he was in), plays the dominant character. Imagine having to rule the screen in scenes with

Christopher Walken and Philip Seymour Hoffman; he turned out to be up to the challenge. The rest of the cast is also wonderful, including an extraordinary near-cameo by real-life cellist Nina Lee and a delightful turn by Wallace Shawn. The experience of watching A Late Quartet left us breathless. We knew the movie wasn’t for everyone; there are some scenes and some language that will make the experience unpleasant for certain people. But for me, it was the best movie of 2012, though I didn’t see it until the Oscars were over. It’s available on DVD and as a download; if it sounds interesting to you, there’s no reason not to see it now. As you might guess, when I had my phone meeting with Yaron Zilberman and the producer who is trying to put together “Unaccompanied Sonata,” I didn’t even ask “Who’s the composer?” Because I knew, from watching A Late Quartet, that this is a writer-director who will not settle for anything less than excellence. Whatever the music is, it will be convincing; however the short story is expanded, it will stay true to the deep fable at its heart. Most options don’t lead to funded movies; few of them ever get made. But I hope I get to see the Zilberman version of “Unaccompanied Sonata.” It is my best story, in the hands of the only director I

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.... Around 1900, a sort of consensus emerged about Ulysses S. Grant. Southern politicians and Northern businessmen, determined to lay the bitterness of the Civil War to rest, settled on a view of Grant that diminished him and downplayed the issues that had divided the country. In this new consensus, which has been followed by historians, textbook writers and politicians who should have known better, the Civil War was about states’ rights, not slavery, and Grant’s administration was about nothing in particular, except that it was tainted with corruption. Grant himself was a general who only won because the Union Army outnumbered and was better supplied than Lee’s, and Grant was callous enough to burn up the lives of his soldiers like candle wax. I know enough about the Civil War and about military leadership to recognize the stupidity of this view of Grant as a general. Every other Union commander had the same “inevitable” advantages – outnumbering their Southern opponents, with inexhaustible supplies. Yet only Grant had the boldness to use those advantages to overcome the advantages of the South – fighting on home ground, with interior lines of communication and entrenched positions. Those who say that any Union commander could have won must be answered with the obvious fact that in four years of war, a dozen commanders tried, but only Grant succeeded. Even the achievements of other commanders in the endgame of the war – Sherman, Sheridan, Thomas – only succeeded because they had Grant above them, behind them, saying yes to the genius and vigor of Sherman and Sheridan, or prodding Thomas into action. In fact, as I survey the whole history of warfare, what emerges very clearly is that the great war leaders are always men who act boldly. Yes, they prepare thoroughly, they train their men, they outthink their opponents. But what separates them from others who prepare, train and think well is that the great commanders then act boldly and quickly. There are those who are sure the great commanders of the Civil War were all Southern – Lee, Jackson, Forrest, Stuart. These were very good commanders it is true, but Forrest’s only job was to be disruptive, not to win battles, and at key moments every one of the others faltered. Jackson’s disastrous failures came in the Seven Days around Richmond; Stuart’s dash led him to fail Lee when he was needed most, at Gettysburg. And Gettysburg was also the place where Lee’s personal weakness was exposed, for he was counseled against Pickett’s disastrous charge, and in the aftermath it was only Union General Meade’s reluctance to act that allowed Lee to escape

with his army intact. On the offensive, Lee was a commander without a definable goal, and so he failed – miserably, spectacularly and unnecessarily. But Grant did not fail; even massive setbacks did not faze him. Lee knew it; when Grant came on the scene, at last he was facing an opponent who could not be broken, and Lee’s maneuvering was not for victory but for survival. Grant was at his most brilliant in precisely the area where Lee was weakest: On the offensive, he never lost track of his goals and he never relented in the pursuit of them. Oddly enough, however, it is not in dealing with Grant’s military campaigns that H.W. Brands does his best work in his new biography The Man Who Saved the Union: Ulysses Grant in War and Peace. I had just read Shelby Foote’s massive Civil War history, and I grew up on Bruce Catton’s Army of the Potomac. Brands simply didn’t have the pages to do Grant justice as a commander, though he gives a decent overview of Grant’s military achievements. There are times when it almost seems as if Brands finds Sherman more interesting than Grant, though the time spent on Sherman is not inappropriate, because the friendship and partnership between Grant and Sherman was a key component of the Union victory, and one of Grant’s greatest strengths was his unsentimental and accurate assessment of the commanders who served over, beside and under him. Nevertheless, the real reward of reading The Man Who Saved the Union is in his depiction of Grant’s presidency. First, it’s easy for us to forget that Ulysses Grant was the dominant man of his age. With Lincoln dead, it was Grant who emerged from the Civil War with even more public support, acclaim and love than Roosevelt after the Depression or Eisenhower after World War II. And Grant’s presidency was a heroic one – for precisely the reasons that the coalition of Southern politicians and Northern businessmen wanted to erase from memory. Grant had to deal with Southern racists’ efforts to undo the results of the Civil War. He repeatedly sent in federal troops to put down what amounted to continuing rebellions. The rebellions were not directed against federal troops; they were directed against helpless black citizens and against Republican voters and officeholders. The lynchings of the Jim Crow era do not compare with the wholesale massacres committed by the first incarnation of the Ku Klux Klan and other white supremacist groups. Grant’s determination to protect and defend the rights of American blacks began during the Civil War itself. Grant had not been an Abolitionist; he (Continued on page 14)

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Page 13

Seniors Stoned On NEED CASH? More Than Meds

Cherry’s Fine Guns is looking to buy or consign guns. We are interested in most handguns, most antiques and some long guns. If you are looking to put some cash in your pocket, give Kevin Cherry or Gurney Brown a call today.

by Scott D. Yost county editor

When 70-year-old Robert Platshorn, a marijuana activist who was jailed for three decades after dealing the drug, moved into a gated community in West Palm Beach, Fla., three years ago, he said he “met people in my development who were looking strange at me.” Now, he said, couples invite him to their condominiums to get high together. “Shuffleboard? Oh, Maybe Let’s Get High Instead,” The New York Times, March 24, 2013

I don’t read The New York Times, but The Rhinoceros Times Editor and Publisher John Hammer reads that paper just about every day, and, the other day, he informed me of an article in The Times (New York, not Rhino) that revealed the latest hot trend: old people getting together in old folks homes and in other retirement communities and getting high. You know, it’s just like what goes on at college but, instead of teenagers in a dorm room passing a bong and drinking beer, it’s grandpa and grandma in a room at Well-Spring passing a joint and drinking Ensure. Now, anytime you write about the evil weed in a family newspaper, it can be a touchy subject and you have to be careful, so let me start with a clear and simple message for any kids who might be reading my column this week: Kids, drugs are bad, OK? Don’t do them. Again, drugs are bad. Now, with that disclaimer out of the way, let me say that this new behavior among old people is totally unacceptable. It is very disturbing. I mean, it’s understandable that kids would be drawn to the forbidden siren’s call of the devil’s weed – you know, kids have a natural tendency to experiment. But it’s very alarming to discover that old people – who quite frankly should know better and who should have sown all their wild oats years ago – are sitting around getting high while playing shuffleboard or whatever. Old people should know better pure and simple, and nothing at all good can come from the new fad of senior citizens smoking marijuana, which is why this is a problem we need to nip in the bud. Now, I think old people and weed are a very dangerous combination because, if you think about it, old people already seem kind of stoned all the time, even before they light up. In that respect, they’re like cats. For instance, senior citizens go on and on talking about stuff that doesn’t make much sense in the first place, and, if that’s not bad enough in the first place, they are always repeating themselves and asking, “Now, what was I saying again?” – just like stoned people of any age. And, if they get high at the old folks home, there’s always the chance that they might get on the road. They might all be sitting around passing a doobie one night and then get the munchies and pile in the Oldsmobile to get some burgers and shakes at the Boar and Castle on West Market Street, and, when they pull into La Bamba – or whatever in the world is there now – and they order Boar and Castle burgers with extra sauce, and fries and shakes, there would be a whole lot of confusion, and it will no doubt hold up things and it’s all likely to end badly. And then, after that fiasco, they might start driving all around town to see if a new Jayne Mansfield talking picture show is playing, and they’ll be very confused when they can’t find the Carolina Bijoux anywhere downtown. Anyway, like I said, old people shouldn’t smoke pot because they don’t need it; in many ways it’s like they’re already stoned. To take another example, when it’s your birthday, they give you a check for like $5 in that barely legible scrawl that looks like a stoner’s, and they say cheerfully when they give it to you, “Don’t spend it all in one place!” Which clearly doesn’t make any sense. They’re not making a joke or anything: They mean it when they say that. And you’re thinking, OK, let’s see, I’ll get a stick of gum and then I’ll go somewhere else and buy a stamp or whatever. Also, if you listen to old people talk to each other, it’s almost exactly like a conversation that stoned people might have. One old person will say, “My, it’s windy today,” and the other will go, “No, I’m pretty sure it’s Thursday today,” and then the response will be “No, no, I said it’s windy today,” and the other old person will say, “What? What? I can’t hear you, I have a banana in my ear.” I should have seen this trend coming. The last time I was at an old folks home visiting someone, I could tell the place just didn’t smell right. It smelled kind of like an Oingo Boingo concert. And there were other clues as well that I could have seen if I’d been paying close enough attention. In fact, if you keep your eyes and ears open there are plenty of clues to (Continued on page 50)

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Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Uncle Orson (Continued from page 12) had other things on his mind. He even married a woman from a slave-owning family. But during the war, he saw very quickly that black soldiers fought every bit as well as white soldiers with similar training, and he welcomed them into his army. When Confederates made it clear that they were going to slaughter defeated black Union soldiers rather than take them prisoner, Grant wrestled with ways to make his enemies treat these soldiers according to the rules of war. Eventually he realized that retaliation didn’t work; that what would save these soldiers was to not lose battles. But because the black soldiers who were captured were not treated as prisoners of war, but were rather returned to slavery, Grant put a stop to the exchange of prisoners. He even wrote a letter to Lee explaining that since the Confederacy was violating the prisoner-of-war status of a whole class of Union soldiers, Grant was no longer going to allow any Confederates to return home. This decision is usually depicted as a ploy to force the Confederacy to keep feeding Union prisoners while not getting back Confederates who would then be returned to the front lines to fight. Until this biography, I had never heard of Grant’s having the motive of marking his anger at the Southern treatment of black soldiers. During Grant’s presidency, one of his constant themes – indeed, the dominant project of his presidency – was to enforce the 14th and 15th amendments, protecting the civil rights of blacks in the South and the North. After Grant, it was not until Lyndon Johnson that we had a president who even tried to match Grant’s record on Civil Rights. The fact that the Republican Party lost its soul after Grant does not change the fact that during his presidency, he made sure that the fight for Civil Rights was relentless.

Readers of this column know by now what a fan of Winston Churchill I am. Yet I found myself admiring and loving Grant to a similar degree – though Grant was the opposite of Churchill in nearly every way. Churchill was an aristocrat, Grant of very common origins. Churchill lived by his pen and his oratory, supporting himself with his high earnings from both; Grant hated public speaking and only took up his pen when he was dying of cancer, in the hope that his autobiography would make enough money to provide for his widow and pay off the debts that had resulted from having invested heavily in his son’s partnership with a man who turned out to be a crook. Churchill sought opportunities for personal heroics, and his life was ruled by his ambition. Grant had no particular ambition. He was something only Washington matched: a reluctant president. Grant’s determination led him to a victory in the Civil War that had eluded every other commander. And during his presidency, he bravely and effectively held the line on Civil Rights; he can hardly be blamed for his successors’ abandonment of America’s blacks. As for the alleged “corruption” of his administration, the opposite is true. Corruption was uncovered only because Grant authorized and encouraged investigators to follow wherever the evidence led. And even with that, most of the “scandals” charged against him weren’t in his administration; his administration caught the corruption of others. Here is the real proof: Grant emerged from the White House with very little money. That’s how scrupulously he avoided profiting from his office. Compare him to Lyndon Johnson, whose only two jobs were schoolteacher and politician and yet who somehow managed to become a millionaire. Or Bill Clinton. Or Barack Obama. Somehow politics made them rich (oh, yeah; Hillary’s cattle futures; sales of books Obama “wrote”). But not Grant. Grant’s only real financial success came

when Samuel Clemens (Mark Twain) stepped in at the end of Grant’s life and became his publisher, giving him a far better deal through his subscription model of publication – 75 percent of receipts – than the immoral 10 percent royalties that the standard publishers offered. Yes, Mark Twain also made money from Grant’s autobiography, but his steadfast support of Ulysses Grant during his last months of life make Twain a great man as well as a great writer, in my opinion. Isn’t it a shame that today, when Grant should be hailed as one of the great Civil Rights champions in American history, he is still ignored and treated as a second-rate president? But that was certainly not the case in his own time. No living American was more famous and more beloved than Ulysses Grant. Had he actively sought it, he could have serve three or four terms as president. And when he died, all of America mourned as we have never mourned for a president who did not die in office. Out of office, he was remembered and loved; and he deserved it. Especially he was revered by black Americans; they knew that with Lincoln gone, he was their last and greatest friend. The book is not a great biography; in fact, it’s so short that one has to think of it as more of an extended biographical summary. But it’s a good summary of Grant’s life and work, and a good reminder of a quintessentially American life that should serve as a model of both extraordinary achievement and genuine humility. Grant was a good man and a great leader; we should not have forgotten him.

.... When you first get into feeding birds, you get the impression that finches just love those thin tiny black thistle seeds called “nyjer.” Yeah, right. Here’s the truth about nyjer seeds. Unless you buy them prekilled (i.e., slightly cooked), they sprout everywhere and you

spend months pulling up fast-growing thistles for thirty feet around your feeders. But more to the point: Finches hate nyjer seed. They’ll eat anything else before they’ll touch it. I bought one mid-size bag of nyjer seed and it lasted for a year and I ended up throwing half of it away because, when given a choice, the birds devoured everything else before they deigned to touch the nyjer. I filled one compartment of a fourcompartment feeder with nyjer; I had to refill the other compartments over and over, but the nyjer never went down. Even when I filled a tray with it and put it on the ground, even the squirrels ignored it. Only the doves climbed into the tray and ate. But they’ll eat anything, and even they only ate it down about a quarter inch and ignored the rest. What do the finches eat? We had winter feeding flocks of 50 to 75 birds at the feeders in both the front and back yards (though to be fair, there was no way to tell whether they were the same birds in both places; after all, birds do fly right over the house). At the peak of cold weather, we’re changing huge bags of sunflower chips from Wild Birds Unlimited every week or so. Everybody loves sunflower chips. Even the worm-eaters stop by for sunflower snacks. If you want finches – and every other seed-eater – skip the nyjer and use sunflower chips. If you want woodpeckers, you also want suet feeders, and if you want bluebirds, dried mealworms do the job. Maybe somewhere in the world there are thistle-loving finches. But I think the only way they eat nyjer is if they’re in the desert or the arctic – a sterile environment where nyjer is the only edible substance. (And before you write your letter, I did use nyjer seeds from several sources, not just that one bag. And I don’t care if your finches eat nyjer. Only the most discriminating finches come to my yard; if low-class, uneducated finches eat nyjer seed from your feeders, I won’t tell anyone of your shame.)

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Page 39

Letters to the Editor No-brainers about elections Dear Editor, There are numerous questions about the election process in North Carolina. There are many of us who believe that the election process in North Carolina is fraught with fraud, collusion and misrepresentation. We believe that in many counties every effort is being made to hide or sweep any indications of fraud, collusion and misrepresentation under the rug and bury it. Over the years I have made tens of thousands of decisions. Many of those decisions were made to put someone in harm’s way during war; those were never easy decisions. But among those decisions were a large number that were considered no-brainers – decisions that took little to no thought to implement. Our state legislators have been presented with a number of no-brainers when it comes to the election system. Three are: Proof of citizenship when registering to vote in North Carolina is not a luxury but an absolutely necessary requirement. There should never be voter registration on the same day as an election. Voter registration must be stopped at a point that would allow the boards of election to properly verify an individual’s citizenship and place of residence. I believe that voter registration should be stopped 30 days prior to an election: primary, special or general. Stopping voter registration at anything less than 15 days prior to an election should be unthinkable. Voter identification at the polls is an absolute necessity. There is no better way to prove proper identification than the requirement to provide a photo identification card that has been issued by a government agency. There are many within the North Carolina General Assembly and the public that have used just about every excuse on earth to stop requirements to make the state election system a model of integrity. We as citizens should be mindful that the election system used in North Carolina lacks the required checks and balances needed to insure that those and only those with a right to vote in the state can do so. We must ask your elected legislators in the General Assembly to modernize North Carolina’s election process. This can be started by implementing the above three no-brainers. Ray Shamlin

Court shouldn’t override people Dear Editor, I understand that the Supreme Court is hearing challenges to Prop 8 from California and the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) this week. I do believe that children are better served by having a mother and a father, but having said that, I am not against people that are in love getting married. The problem I have with all of this is

that both of these measures were voted on and passed. In the case of Prop 8, which is a California constitutional amendment, it was voted on and passed by legislators and by a referendum of voters. In the case of DOMA it was properly voted on and passed by Congress and signed by the president. I believe in the democratic process and am very firmly against nine justices setting aside these laws. Why should we have nine justices override the law of the land and impose their will on the country in a matter that was so openly and clearly decided with all sides being heard? I am told that the country is moving toward acceptance of marriage between two people of the same sex and that is probably the case. If Americans are against these laws and want to change them, why not vote again and change them? Steve Golimowski

There is a reason for sex Dear Editor, There is one very specific reason for the creation of two sexes in humans and most other living species on planet earth. That being procreation of the species and natural parents to nurture and raise their offspring. There is no legislation that can change that process or the intent of it. Among all living species on earth, only human beings are intelligent enough to attempt to alter the intent of God and mother nature. I have absolutely no problem with people being who and what they are, but in a discreet manner, and, as long as they don’t touch or bother me and my family. It is not appreciated and no fun when a “non-straight” person tries to hit on you. Some people don’t seem to understand, comprehend and cannot accept the fact that their advances and affections are not appreciated nor wanted by “straight” people. This legislator (McGreevy), who just resigned his office, put it best when he stated he researched homosexuality and found it is a “psychological illness” that is an “unhealthy” and “abnormal” lifestyle, which, apparently, there is no alternative or remedy for at this time. Ramon Bell

would be in jeopardy and it might effect his legacy, so he places the blame on the Republicans or anyone but himself. At some point President Obama, has to take responsibility for his failed policies that have caused this country’s turmoil and stop blaming everyone else for his own actions. It is about time for the Democrats and the Republicans to start putting their constituents first, stop this childish bickering and get back to working for the American people who elected them into their current political office. Steven M. Shelton

Congrats to Whole Foods Dear Editor, I would like to commend the Whole Foods Market for deciding that products sold in their stores must state whether they contain genetically modified organisms. Unfortunately, the policy doesn’t go into effect until 2018, but to the best of my knowledge they are the first grocery store to support the labeling of genetically engineered food sold in their stores. I believe that the government should require all food products that have been genetically engineered, modified or altered by nano-technology to have warning labels. Chuck Mann

GTCC’s dirty little secret Dear Editor, Nora Carr, Guilford County Schools chief of staff, wants you as taxpayers to fund expensive books for families who do not have $100 to $150 to spend on books. I have two children at UNC-Chapel Hill and it is fairly easy. I have second jobs to pay for the books and tuition. Here is the dirty secret on how GTCC works. Feel free to check it out. The students will eagerly clue you in. Ever notice GTCC has enrollment statistics through the roof? Do you see at the beginning semesters the parking lot overflowing? Here is the real scoop: The government pays for low income tuition with a starting check, plus funds to cover half of the tuition for the start of a semester. Low-income students sign up for a full load (hence the parking lots or overflowing) using the free money from the government. We know it is not free; it comes from your taxes. Half way through the semester, the scam is to drop all the courses except one. This means you still are a student with minimal credit requirements. Second check comes the second half of the semester to pay for a full load of courses, except the student only has one course to (Continued on page 45)


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Obama blames everyone else Dear Editor, Rush Limbaugh devised a theorem that explains why President Obama steadfastly refuses to govern. His theorem is based on the president’s reasons that he is an outsider fighting evil forces such as those who want to harm the poor or the elderly, namely the Republicans or the rich, etc. The president does not want any piece of legislation with his fingerprints on it or he may have to take credit for his failed policies. He has to be fighting evil forces within this country in order to retain his political standing. If he were to have to take credit for his failed policies, his presidency

Page 40

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Secrecy (Continued from page 1) not notified or invited. One discussion that did take place according to Councilmember Zack Matheny was about the county commissioners not approving the City Council’s use of hotelmotel tax money to pay for bonds for a proposed performing arts center, more commonly referred to as the music hall. The Republican majority on the Board of Commissioners generally disapproves of the government taking on more debt, so that is going to be an interesting discussion and one the public has a right to hear. But under the leadership of Mayor Robbie Perkins, much more is done behind closed doors than has been in the past. If councilmembers and commissioners were discussing issues like spending tax dollars and selling bonds that is hardly a “social meeting,” which is the exception in the open meetings law that might allow two governing bodies to meet without public notice. No, it was simply another secret closed meeting, the kind that this council has far too frequently. Perkins brought back the small group meeting, which is simply a board, committee or commission that is appointed to work on or discuss a particular project. But City Attorney Mujeeb ShahKhan says that as long as Perkins doesn’t designate them as committees, then they don’t fall under the open meetings law. This can best be described as an interesting interpretation of the law, which states that the law covers any group elected or appointed that “(i) is composed of two or more members and (ii) exercises or is authorized to exercise a legislative, policymaking, quasi-judicial, administrative, or advisory function.” But the only way to do anything about it is to take the city to court where the very best outcome would be for a judge to tell the city not to do that anymore and make the city pay the legal expenses for the person who filed suit. However, even if you win there is no guarantee of legal expenses. At the open public meeting on Tuesday night, this City Council kept to its policy of never doing anything if it can get away with doing nothing. The ordinance to rezone what has been dubbed by the city the “Greater Kirkwood Neighborhood” by implementing a poorly written, poorly thought-out, poorly designed Neighborhood Conservation Overlay (NCO) District Ordinance was not voted on by the council. In fact, the council made a big point of not voting on it. This push by a few women who don’t live in Kirkwood to tell all of their neighbors what to do with their property should have been voted down unanimously like it was twice by the Greensboro Zoning Commission. The NCO could have been thrown out on any number of grounds. The petition, which by law has to have signatures of over 50 percent of the people in the district, officially had 53 percent but could have been ruled invalid because the district

has changed drastically since the petition was signed and the conditions have also changed drastically. Also, the real Kirkwood neighborhood is transitional. A lot of young families move in and out every year. If you moved into the area in the past two years you were not even given the opportunity to sign or not sign the petition. The council could have questioned the entire project because so many from the Planning and Community Development Department who were there in the beginning are not still working for the city. Former City Planner Mary Sertell – who wrote this plan along with the Downtown Design & Compatibility Manual, which has also been thrown out – has been gone for years. Planning Director Dick Hails, who actually came to some early Greater Kirkwood Neighborhood meetings, was forced to resign. He was forced to resign because of moves like the Kirkwood NCO, but the City Council doesn’t have the gumption to vote down his misguided projects, so the projects keep coming back. It is a sad, sad group that can’t make a decision. There is a good lesson for anyone who wants the city to do something. All you need to do is find three or four retired people who like to make telephone calls and send emails. If they will just spend an hour or so a day calling and emailing councilmembers and city staff, it evidently doesn’t matter that their numbers are small, as long as they are persistent. What the council did do instead of passing or denying the rezoning request was essentially nothing. Councilmember Zack Matheny did ask staff to look at the zoning ordinance for the city as regards setbacks and lot widths and also to start the process of doing a corridor study for Lawndale Drive beginning at Cornwallis Drive and going north. The council couldn’t decide how far north to go – decisions are extremely difficult for this council – but Lawndale ends at Lake Brandt Road so no doubt it will be there or somewhere south of there. Councilmember Marikay Abuzuaiter went along with the no action and evidently got the message not to second Councilmember Yvonne Johnson’s motion to pass the Kirkwood NCO, which failed for lack of a second. But Abuzuaiter just doesn’t get it. She said she was still worried about the tree canopy. Matheny explained that if the NCO passed there was nothing to prevent a homeowner from clear-cutting his lot. Nor was there anything to prevent someone from clear-cutting a lot and then selling it to a developer. What the ordinance would have done, if it had passed, was practically guarantee that before any building permit was obtained that at the very least all the trees in the front yard would be cut down because once a building permit is obtained according to the ordinance, all kinds of restrictions on tree cutting went into effect. This type of ordinance would encourage,

not discourage, tree cutting by developers. Both Abuzuaiter and Councilmember Nancy Hoffmann thanked the people from the neighborhood who were involved in developing and pushing for the NCO. But neither recognized the people in the neighborhood who were opposed to the ordinance that didn’t have city staff members to set up meetings and send out notices for them. The neighborhood was split on the issue with the proponents having all the resources of the city staff at their beck and call. The opponents got no help at all from the city. In fact, the city staff supported the NCO against the wishes of about half of the neighborhood. The city didn’t hold a single meeting for those who opposed the ordinance, and tried to keep those who opposed the ordinance from speaking at meetings about the ordinance. The council swears that the Kirkwood NCO process, which started in 2008, is over, but the council swore that before when it was voted down unanimously by

Charters (Continued from page 4) the auditing requirements for traditional public school systems, which according to one source seem to be perfunctory at best. When the new charter school regulations in Tillman’s bill go into effect, the charter school system will make more sense. A charter school is a public school funded with tax dollars on the same per-pupil basis as the traditional public schools, but a charter school does not receive capital funds, which means charter schools are responsible for building, buying or leasing their own school buildings and they do not come under the authority of the local school board. What charter schools are designed to do is give people who cannot afford private schools another choice in education. Charter schools should be more nimble than traditional public schools The charter schools are freed from the massive bureaucracy that governs traditional public schools. Many of the complaints about Tillman’s bill have to do with the fact that the charter school board, which unlike the current advisory board will have real power over charter schools, will be made up of proponents of the charter school system. That seems like a no-brainer. Do they expect the Board of Governors of the University of North Carolina system to be made up of people who think that states should not be in the business of higher education? Don’t you want people who know about and are in favor of charter schools on the charter school board? Another complaint is the lack of a required criminal background check for charter school employees, which reportedly is not required of traditional public schools

the Zoning Commission in February 2012 and was taken off the council agenda. But it came back and legally it can come back again. The Good Repair Ordinance – which will only apply to buildings downtown and is another of Downtown Greensboro Inc.’s (DGI) attempts to bring more business downtown by increasing regulations and the cost of doing business downtown – was once again continued by the City Council. If DGI has the right philosophy about bringing business downtown, why doesn’t the city raise the downtown Business Improvement District tax by a dollar or two and pass an ordinance saying that a committee of 50 city employees will pick all the paint colors used downtown? If more taxes, more regulations and more bureaucracy are the keys to success, maybe Greensboro is not being bold enough. In other public business the council unanimously voted to give TIMCO Aviation Services $400,000. Most of the time when (Continued on next page)

either. The fact that teachers do not have to have teaching certificates is another fault opponents of charter schools find with the bill. The teaching certificate issue is a wonderful example of bureaucracy gone berserk. You can have a doctorate and be qualified to teach at any university in the country and not be qualified to teach in a public school. Something is wrong there and the charter school bill will fix it, at least for charter schools. The criminal background check and the teaching certificate actually fall into the same category. Currently, people without the means to send their children to private schools and who can’t home school have to send their children to traditional public schools. Nobody has to send their child to a charter school. If a charter school is not performing up to a parent’s satisfaction they can pull their children out and put them in a different school. There is no captive audience. It would be crazy for a school not to do criminal background checks, but what if one didn’t and it really bothered a parent? Then the parent doesn’t have to send their children there and they can talk other parents into pulling their kids out of the school also. Charter schools do well when parents like the education that their children are getting there. If parents don’t like the school, it won’t get students, and without students it won’t get funding, which is on a per-pupil basis, and it will fail. Charter schools should be more independent and have more freedom to experiment than traditional public schools, that is their role. One would hope that traditional public schools would pick up new programs from charter schools, and some have already.

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Page 41

Secrecy (Continued from previous page) a big corporation gets a huge gift from the city, it is explained that the city will make the money back in increased property taxes and all that is really happening is that the company gets some relief on their property taxes on the new structure and equipment for a few years. TIMCO is out at the Piedmont Triad International Airport, which is not in Greensboro. The Piedmont Triad Airport Authority owns all the land. Guilford County can tax the equipment, but Greensboro doesn’t get any direct taxes from TIMCO. What the city did to make the giveaway look legitimate is figure how much the new employees would spend in Greensboro and how much in sales tax the city would receive. TIMCO is a fine company and is an amazing local success story. But like every other major company that gets incentives, the top executives have decided what they are going to do and now they are seeing how much money they can get out of the government for doing what they planned to do all along. If the city government decided to hand out money to feisty conservative weekly newspapers, we would be in line with our hand out, so there is nothing against TIMCO. But for taxpayers, the City Council just took money out of your pockets and gave it to a very wealthy and successful company. It just doesn’t make

sense. In keeping with the new secrecy rule during the required break so the City Council can eat, the legal department handed out the bill about the Asheville water system that was introduced in the legislature on Thursday, March 28, and a resolution. Shah-Khan then asked the council to pass a resolution he had written opposing the bill. The council had been back in session for less than 30 minutes with the eight-page bill and resolution sitting in front of them. Councilmember Tony Wilkins complained about voting on something he had not read, but the motion to pass ShahKhan’s resolution passed 8 to 1. After the meeting Abuzuaiter said she had read the bill because it came in her packet. Evidently Abuzuaiter is getting a different agenda packet from everyone else because the clerk said it was not in the agenda packets delivered to councilmembers’ homes because she didn’t get it until the break, and staff handed it out during the break from 8 to 8:30 p.m. In keeping with the city’s new policies to try and make the job of reporting on the council as difficult as legally possible, the press was not given copies of the bill and resolution until Shah-Khan introduced the item. It is an extremely complicated issue that a state study committee has been working on for a year, but the City Council is willing to

accept whatever Shah-Khan says and vote to oppose it. Shah-Khan should have presented a resolution to give himself a $100,000 raise, then explained that he would spend most of the money in the city so the city would get back the sales tax. There is no reason for this, but Communications Manager Donnie Turlington doesn’t hand out items to the press until they come up on the agenda. The documents are all public records and, if a reporter were to get up out of his seat and walk over to ask Turlington for the documents he would be required by law to hand them over, but in most cases it doesn’t make any difference. In this instance it would have been helpful to know what Shah-Khan was talking about. No doubt Turlington is acting on orders from higher up, because this council seems determined to close the doors as much as possible. Duke Energy District Manager Montgomery Davis was not on the agenda, but early in the meeting gave a report on Duke Energy clear-cutting in Lindley Park in and around the Arboretum. Duke Energy didn’t just cut trees, they cut shrubs that would need the assistance of a crane to lift them up to interfere with the high tension wires that run through the park and the tall metal towers. The basic message from Montgomery was that those transmission lines were federally

regulated and the federal government gave Duke Energy the right to cut anything near them so Duke Energy did. When Councilmember Nancy Vaughan, who has led the tree preservation fight, was asked why Duke Energy would bother to cut ornamental trees and shrubs she said, “Because they can.” She said that the city couldn’t do anything about it, so Duke Energy came in and cut everything. It doesn’t appear that Duke Energy is interested in being a good neighbor but is interested in exhibiting its authority. If your thinking that overall the city is pretty well run, a couple of questions asked by Wilkins and Abuzuaiter about a consent agenda item may prove otherwise. The council approved a motion to extend a fiveyear contract for grading and equipment use at the White Street Landfill. The equipment is mostly used for yard waste. But the reason the contract needed to be extended is that the city forgot to put the contract out for bids before it ran out. So the contract expired and the city needed to extend it for three months so the city can bid the new contract. The city also passed the new entertainment facility use ordinance, which puts in more stringent requirements for clubs that have two shootings or other serious incidents in a year. That motion passed 8 to 1 with Councilmember Dianne Bellamy-Small voting no.


MARCH 14 – APRIL 15, 2013



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Fleeing (Continued from page 3) to do that, so we essentially had to fill 89 positions at the end of the process,” Barnes said. The sheriff added that all applicants must pass thorough background checks before being getting the job. “We do criminal checks, background checks, credit checks – we even go out and talk to the neighbors,” Barnes said. At the Board of Commissioners Thursday, March 21 meeting, the board approved $8,200 from the sheriff’s federal forfeiture fund for the purchase of a “voice stress analyzer,” which is a type of voicebased lie detector that works over the phone as well as in person to provide clues when someone is lying. Barnes said the department got the voice analyzer to assist his department in background checks when hiring jail guards in addition to use in other investigations. Guilford County Sheriff’s Department Major Debbie Montgomery said the conditions in the county’s new jail in Greensboro are significantly improved over the old county jail that’s right next to it, but she said it’s still very difficult to find and hold onto good detention officers. “Not everybody can be a school teacher; not everyone can be a doctor; and not everyone can be a jail guard,” Montgomery said. She said the county’s detention officers,

Thursday, April 4, 2013

who typically work 12-hour shifts, must deal on a daily basis with inmates who have mental health issues, anger issues and substance abuse problems. She added that there are also often language barriers in the jobs since a good number of those held in the county’s jails don’t speak English. Montgomery added that detention officers are very busy because of a constant stream of nurses, supervisors, inspectors, pretrial workers, attorneys and others who come through the jails. Sheriff’s Department officials say that when the county does not have sufficient guards, inmates must spend more time in their cells and guards are more likely to experience burnout. They also maintain that not having enough guards endangers the safety of both the inmates and the jail staff, in addition to adding to stress levels all around. Capt. Kenneth Watkins, who’s worked with the county’s detention officers for over two decades, said it’s a lot different supervising jail inmates than supervising regular employees. “These people don’t always comply with your orders,” Watkins said. He said he thinks a lot of the recent turnover is due to the speed with which Guilford County hired new guards in the effort to open the new jail. “Anytime you hire that many people in a short span of time, you will see this,” he said of the high turnover rate.

Diversity (Continued from page 3) The professors that Roth appointed to the committee are Ruth DeHoog, a professor and director of the Master of Public Affairs Program at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and Howard Katz, a professor at Elon School of Law. Roth said DeHoog and Katz had spent a lot of time studying how governments are put together. Roth said she had wanted to appoint a conservative economist to the committee but was unable to appoint the person she had chosen due to scheduling issues. Roth declined to name the conservative economist but said he has had articles in the News & Record. Greensboro City Councilmember Tony Wilkins, a Republican, said he was unaware of the existence of the committee and was concerned about the membership. He said he had been getting calls about the GREAT committee since The Rhino Times published the political affiliations of the committee members. “We’d like some conservative representation on that committee,” said Wilkins. Wilkins, who was appointed to the Greensboro City Council in December of last year to replace former City Councilmember Trudy Wade, who won a seat in the state Senate in the November election, said he had not been consulted about the committee membership. Councilmember Jim Kee said that Roth told him about the committee but that the

council had no involvement in the selection process. Kee said he was supportive of the committee and that he thought the private sector was adequately represented. “Two out of seven isn’t bad,” he said. Kee also said that although Allen doesn’t live in Greensboro, he has a stake in the city because he is the pastor of Shiloh Baptist Church. In other budget news, the first community budget meeting was hosted by Kee for District 2 Thursday, March 28 at the Eastern Division Police Station. Kee gave a brief presentation on some of the projects the City Council has taken action on over the last few years, including providing $12 million in funding to the Greensboro Aquatic Center, keeping the White Street Landfill closed to municipal solid waste and provided an update on the Keeley Park project. Roth then gave a presentation on the budget process and said there was a $7.1 million gap between revenues and expenses in the roughly $470 million Greensboro budget. She said that staff is looking for ways to close the budget gap without adversely impacting services. By law the budget must be approved by the City Council by July 1. Residents of District 2 expressed concerns about the prevalence of crime in some neighborhoods and had requests for policing and infrastructure improvements.

Watkins added that many of the detention officers the county has hired recently are people “looking for a job, not a career.” Barnes said Guilford County is being very proactive in finding new guards through

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

want ads, job fairs and other outreach. The starting salary for a guard with a high school diploma is $33,952 a year. The pay is higher for those with more education or those who speak Spanish.


(Continued from page 5)

Cotten did a reasonable job of getting the commissioners to increase his pay and keep his salary in line with that of other elections directors across the state. Gilbert said that, after 2008, there was a pay freeze for county employees and that was the point at which his pay started getting out of line in a big way with other elections directors in other counties. “A freeze on salaries doesn’t negate the state statute,” Gilbert said this week. He said human resources directors in other counties looked at the issue and determined that the elections director pay needed to be increased. According to Gilbert, those changes took place four or five years ago in other counties similar in election complexity and population to Guilford County, and he added that the Guilford County Board of Elections, which oversees his office recommended pay increases for him year after year. However, the commissioners went for years without approving a pay increase for Gilbert. Gilbert said his case is focused on comparisons of the state’s seven largest counties – Mecklenburg, where the elections director makes $112,000; Wake, where the salary is $110,000; Guilford, where Gilbert was making just over $99,000; Forsyth, $90,000; Cumberland, $96,000; Durham, where a brand new director is making $80,000 a year; and Buncombe County, where the elections director makes $104,000 annually. He said his time in that office and the complexity of Guilford County elections also has to be figured into the equation. Gilbert frequently cites the fact that the

Oak Ridge (Continued from page 7) administrators and a review of the documents of the project team that oversaw construction revealed reports of problems throughout the reconstruction that resulted in the school’s foundation and grounds being soaked, at various times, in water, sewage and heating oil. The 2005 Oak Ridge reconstruction seemed cursed from the start. School employees and the project team also said construction at the school was interrupted by a tornado, torrential rains, workers rupturing an unused heating-oil tank and, in another incident, rupturing a gas line and forcing the evacuation of students. According to school employees and Guilford County Schools administrators

elections director in Buncombe County, which is much smaller than Guilford County, was making about $4,000 more than he was before he, Gilbert, retired just over a month ago. Buncombe County has a population of about 244,000 compared to Guilford County’s population of over 495,000. Gilbert said, “I think the strongest part of my case is when the pay is compared to smaller counties like Buncombe and Cumberland.” He added that Durham County was an example of a county that has made real efforts to bring up the salary of its elections director in recent years. According to Gilbert, this lawsuit is not just about getting the money he believes he’s owed; it’s also about protecting future Guilford County elections directors as well as elections directors statewide. “It’s a combination,” Gilbert said. When the lawsuit was filed earlier this year, Commissioner Ray Trapp said there seemed to be a lot of agreement on the Board of Commissioners that the county should refuse to grant Gilbert’s request for a retroactive pay increase. Several other commissioners who didn’t want to talk publicly about the case also said there was a lot of unity on the board in directing Payne to fight Gilbert’s suit. Gilbert said he is unfazed. “I guess I’ll see them in court,” Gilbert said. Cohen said this week that he wants to see Payne’s argument before commenting on it. “We believe that Mr. Gilbert has a valid claim and that’s why we filed the lawsuit,” he said.

who were present during the school’s reconstruction, Gravely and Associates’ design of the new school’s roof resulted in a mismatch between the roof of the old school and the addition, which let water pour into the school, flooding its foundation. Employees said that a representative of Lyon Construction had to redesign the joint between the two roof sections on site to stop the leaks. They said other leaks in the school’s roof continued for years and had to be fixed by contractors under the roof’s warranty. Burrows said his firm would not have done a redesign of the roof. Oak Ridge employees also said that Guilford County Schools Facilities Department administrators did a poor job of monitoring the project.

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro


(Continued from page 1)

election system should be made without a Guilford County referendum. Price is a genial and almost absurdly self-deprecating presence on the school board. He turns every comment into a joke on himself, praises other school board members, even ones with whom he doesn’t agree, and generally increases the humor at nearly pathologically deadpan school board meetings to an almost human level. Price’s “dumb ol’ Ed” routine is an act – and one that has helped him accomplish more for High Point than any other High Point school board member in recent memory. But sometimes he drops the act and gets serious. Thursday night was one of those times. The school board, as it usually does, left the discussion on the work of its Legislative Committee until the end of the meeting. That usually makes sense, because the Legislative Committee report is almost always a pointless wish list of large-scale legislative changes on which the General Assembly couldn’t care less about the opinion of the Guilford County school board. On Thursday, it might have made sense, as Price said, to have the legislative discussion earlier, when the boardroom was full and people watching at home hadn’t fallen asleep. First, Wade’s Senate Bill 317 is a local bill that applies only to the Guilford County school board. It’s natural for the school board and Guilford County residents to have an opinion on it. “I have a lot of respect for Sen. Wade,” Price said. “I think she’s a fine person. I’ve worked with her in the past. I just think she’s flat-out wrong on this proposal. I think it’s purely politically based. And that’s not to say that the other party, when they’ve been in power, haven’t done the same thing.” Price attacked Wade’s bill for making decisions on Guilford County in Raleigh. “I just don’t see any sense in people from Raleigh or Charlotte or Asheville or wherever it is deciding how we elect our school board members here in Guilford County,” Price said. “If this many people are unhappy with our performance, let the voters vote. If this is what’s good for the county, I’m sure the good citizens of Guilford County will vote to change it. But sometimes you have to decide what’s best for the people and what’s best for the party.” Price, a Republican, said he understands that Wade’s bill is a done deal in the Senate, although it hasn’t yet come out of the Redistricting Committee. He said he hoped it will be changed in the House. “They’ve taken away the authority or the right of the citizens of Guilford County to determine what is partisan, how they’re drawing districts and this and that,” Price said. “I know both parties do it. It just isn’t right.” School board Chairman Alan Duncan asked whether Price wanted to make his argument a motion. Price, sounding surprised, said,

Thursday, April 4, 2013

“Me?” But he did so. He said, “I’m just disappointed that this is not going before the voters, so I make a motion that we do not support this bill unless it comes to a vote of the voters.” The school board approved the motion 11 to 0. Wade, contacted on Friday, said she didn’t expect the redistricting to be put to a referendum, and that two-year terms are more the norm than the exception. “We don’t do any redistricting that way, and we haven’t, and I don’t think that’s an option,” she said. “I serve a two-year term, everybody in the General Assembly does.” Wade said she has heard from voters who don’t bother voting for school board members because the districts were drawn in 1991 to favor Democrats. “They said that the districts as set up 20 years ago were basically set for one party, and the Democrats did a good job of that,” Wade said. “This just makes it more competitive. Voters would have more of a reason to go out and vote, and they would have more information on the candidates.” Wade said she was surprised at Price’s opposition, because three of the school board districts would have 65 percent, 67 percent and 51 percent of their voters come from High Point. Wade said, “I think High Point certainly would be competitive in those districts, and High Point would have a chance of having an at-large school board member.” Wade’s bill would redistrict the school board more in the Republican’s favor, as the General Assembly has done to the Guilford County Board of Commissioners. The change is similar to what Democrats did in 1991, when the Democratic Party drew school board districts for the 11-member board identical to those for the Guilford County Board of Commissioners when the Board of Commissioners was increased from seven members to 11 members. That change was done by the state legislature, at that time dominated by Democrats as it had been for about 120 years. There was no public discussion or debate. The Democratic legislature just did it, for the obvious purpose of getting a Democratic majority on the Board of Commissioners. As a freebie, they got a Democratic majority on the nominally nonpartisan school board. Price said that some party should take the high road and stop playing redistricting one-upmanship. But in the real world, that’s not how politics works – and is perhaps a little much to expect from human nature, especially from a party that has spent 120 years in the wilderness in North Carolina. In any case, the irony is that the Guilford County school board is traditionally out in front in lobbying for and against bills, if to little effect. Then along comes a bill that genuinely affects them specifically, and they have seemed a little reticent to take Wade on. At a two-hour breakfast in March with the Guilford County state legislative delegation, not a single school board member brought up Wade’s bill. However, Democratic state Rep. Alma Adams did so at the end of the meeting. Another reason for discussing legislation

earlier in the school board meeting is that the Legislative Committee, which has scaled down its demands to a more practical level since Republicans took over the state government, has had some apparent successes of late. That’s unusual enough to warrant publicizing. On Thursday night, school board member Sandra Alexander called the legislative breakfast “one of the most successful ones we’ve had in three years, both in attendance and in getting the Guilford County delegation to support items on the school board’s annual legislative wish list. The delegation did – largely because the school board, faced with a Republican majority in the General Assembly, scaled back its wish list to things that could be accomplished. Guilford County Schools Chief of Staff Nora Carr said there was substantial agreement among the delegation on exempting public school systems from sales taxes. Private schools and all other governmental entities in North Carolina are exempt – as are NASCAR and other special interests, so there was no reason to quibble over that issue. Carr said that legislators have indicated that exempting public school systems may be part of overall tax reform. The second issue with which the delegation agreed was more local control of school board calendars. The General Assembly limited the length of school years under former Democratic state

Page 43

Senate President Pro Tem Marc Basnight of Manteo to satisfy the tourism industry. Basnight is gone, but the tourism industry remains, so the calendar issue is hard to call. The third issue on which Carr said the delegation agreed was Career and College Promise programs, in which students are dual-enrolled in high school and a community college. Carr said there is no funding for textbooks, supplies and fees, and should be.


(Continued from page 6)

Point, we stated, “Tom Smith of Colfax argued that there are existing areas …” It was actually Todd Smith of Colfax who spoke at the meeting. We regret the error and apologize to Tom Smith of Colfax (if there is one) and Todd Smith of Colfax for getting it wrong. --I was walking across Phill G. McDonald Plaza this week and noticed that Phill got his second L back. It had been missing for a while. McDonald was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for his valiant efforts to save the lives of his fellow soldiers in Vietnam, and the least we can do to honor his memory is (Continued on page 45)

Page 44

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

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The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro


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spell his name correctly in the plaza named in his honor. It appears someone keeps stealing one of the L’s. --I spent some time in the Sheriff BJ Barnes’ office the other day waiting to see the governor, whom I somehow missed. But the conversation the deputies were having was fascinating to me. They were talking about getting parking tickets in downtown Greensboro in their patrol cars. One deputy

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Thursday, April 4, 2013

said he saw a parking enforcement officer writing tickets for Greensboro police patrol cars. No doubt they are giving tickets to ambulance and fire trucks also. But they don’t ticket band buses in front of the Greene Street Club. It is an odd enforcement policy at best, and at worst a corrupt one. --The Greensboro City Council is considering changing the names of High Point Road and Lee Street. Much of the talk is about (Continued on page 50)

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(Continued from page 39) pay for. Free money. Off to the mall to buy $200 tennis shoes, jewelry, whatever, because it is free. The government sends a check directly to the low-income student. There are no checks or balances to even try to confirm classes are being taken. Makes mama proud their offspring are so smart. Rinse and repeat every semester. Notice before drop/add ends, the parking lot is full. After drop/add you can park

anywhere. Now Ms. Carr, lets talk a bit about accountability. Normally this is considered fraud, yet our government is so dysfunctional it cannot (maybe on purpose) keep tabs on students starting and ending class counts? Every taxpayer should be enraged. I, for one, pay for education, not $200 tennis shoes or a new tattoo or piercings. Anonymous

Drivers: Start up to $.40 per mile. Home Weekly. CDL-A, 6Mos. OTR Exp. Required. 50 Brand New Coronados You’ll be Proud to Drive! 877-705-9261 Drivers: Teams/Singles! Run West or Regional Full time/part time/casual/NO NY! 5 yrs OTR Exp Reqd Transcorp Carriers: 800-669-1978

BUSINESS SERVICES TRIAD ENGRAVING & PRINTING: Signs, Banners, Rubber Stamps, Awards, Trophies, Printing; 1110 Grecade Street, Greensboro, NC 336-856-2311;

FINANCIAL SERVICES Beware of loan fraud. Please check with the Better Business Bureau or Consumer Protection Agency before sending any money to any loan company. SAPA

ZiZi’s Restaurant Vegan Take-Out Restaurant No meat. No dairy. BOTTOM LINE! Specializing in tasty vegan comfort food… 3601 Groometown Rd Greensboro NC 27407 336-554-7229

HEALTH/WELLNESS Canada Drug Center is your choice for safe and affordable medications. Our licensed Canadian mail order pharmacy will provide you with savings of up to 90 percent on all your medication needs. Call Today 877-644-3199 for $25.00 off your first prescription and free shipping. SAPA ATTENTION SLEEP APNEA SUFFERERS with Medicare. Get CPAP Replacement Supplies at little or NO COST, plus FREE home delivery! Best of all, prevent red skin sores and bacterial infection! Call 1-888-470-8261. SAPA ATTENTION DIABETICS with Medicare. Get a FREE Talking Meter and diabetic testing supplies at NO COST, plus FREE home delivery! Best of all, this meter eliminates painful finger pricking! Call 877-517-4633. SAPA

4th Year Accounting Student

(336) 772-8799

13 weeks: $130 26 weeks: $228 52 weeks: $312


Leather Upholstery Cleaning & Repairs

Let us clean and make small repairs to your leather furniture to prolong its usable life. CALL FOR A FREE ESTIMATE


FEELING OLDER? Men lose the ability to produce testosterone as they age. Call 888-414-0692 for a FREE trial of Progene- All Natural Testosterone Supplement. SAPA

Owner Operators w/Tandem Axle Tractors. Dedicated Auto Parts Runs. Pickup in Timberlake, NC to Toledo, OH. Great Pay, Benefits, Hometime! CDL-A, 18mos exp. 22yoa. Clean MVR. 800-723-6046. x227

START MAKING $30-$900 Extra Per Week Without Spending a Dime! Get More Info Now! 1-516-3412606; SAPA



MOWING, TRIMMING, and BLOWING Additional services available.

Page 45

BEAUTY SERVICES Love Jafra products but no time for parties? Quick order your favorite products from me! Call 778-1425

MEDICAL SERVICES !!! RAPID WEIGHT LOSS!!! Dr. Jeffrey Hooper’s Weight Loss Clinic Physician Prescribed Weight Loss Looking to shed pounds Quickly? We offer the HCG injections for RAPID WEIGHT LOSS. Offices in Greensboro Call 336-588-1505 or 299-6242 for appointment and locations


Income Tax

Need help sorting your income tax records? Call Roy, I can help. 336-772-8799

HANDYMAN SERVICES Spring Garden Construction Co. Handyman work, painting, remodeling, siding, windows, all types of home repairs. Call 336-918-6528. Jsw1108@msn. com

HOME IMPROVEMENT Patios, driveways and walkways. Tony Walden, Budget Concrete # 2. Work contractor. Any type of concrete work. (O) 336-271-3271; cell: 336-9875433 Spring Garden Construction Co. Handyman work, painting, remodeling, siding, windows, all types of home repairs. Call 336-918-6528. Jsw1108@msn. com CastleWorks Window Cleaning- Includes Pressure Washing, Gutter Cleaning, Chandelier & Ceiling Fan Cleaning plus other high ladder work. Fully insured and bonded. Free estimates Call Today 336-609-0677 Furniture Medic uses advanced techniques and materials to repair wood and leather surfaces. Services also include the enhancement of existing wood finishes on vanities, kitchen cabinets, doors, floors, and trim work. Free Estimates. 336/404-1471

WANTED! Individual Pieces or Whole Collection Top Dollar Paid in Cash

Wanted Riding Lawn Mower that Needs Repairs

or FREE pickup of any unwanted mowers, appliances, grills or metal items.



Sheetrock Services- Textured Ceilings. Call Mike or Jeff Welchel: 336-375-3515, Father & Son. Masonry Concepts. Brick, Block, Stone, Concrete & Repairs. Free Estimates. No job too small. 336-988-1022. Licensed & Insured. BBB accredited.


PLUMBING SERVICES Liquid Assets Plumbing. Protecting the health of the Triad. We handle all types of plumbing services including drains, water mains, gas lines, and wells. 24 hour service. All major credit cards accepted. 336-235-5992. PROFESSIONAL THOROUGH REPAIRS AND FIXTURING. WATER HEATERS . TOILETS . FAUCETS. SUPPLY AND DRAIN PIPING. BONDED AND FULLY INSURED ELECTRICAL SERVICE ALSO. NO JOB TOO ODD! Thomas Eyring 336 988 – 1621

MOVING/HAULING SERVICES * DON’S HAULING* Trash, Brush, Construction, Appliances Garage Debris Removal Attics/Basements!! 336-697-5288 Big Howard’s Junk Removal. Residential & Commercial. House, Attic, Basement, Garage, Yard Debris, Office, Foreclosure, Storage Building, Rental Property. FREE ESTIMATES. 337-0642 or 3390638. Howard Staley, Owner

CLEANING SERVICES Two Lady’s Cleaning Residential & Commercial Top Quality Service Affordable Prices 336-291-3423 Carpet Cleaning & Restoration. All cleaning includes free deodorizing! Call and ask about our money saving specials today! 24 Hr Water Extractions. Agape Services 336-988-6390. Additional services include lawn care, pressure washing, mobile detailing. agapeservices@ yahoo. com TJ’s Pressure Washing & Carpet Cleaning Service. Serving the Triad area. Mobile Detailing, Pressure Wash Homes, Carpet Cleaning, Etc…Contact TJ 336-404-4037

LAWN CARE/ LANDSCAPING EVERYBODY NEEDS A HARRY LAWN MAINTENANCE SERVICE Lawn Maintenance service adding customers. MOWING, TRIMMING, and BLOWING. Additional services available. WE MAKE THE LAWN HAPPY! Call Harry: 855-5706 or 707-4808 GET RIGHT. Home & Lawn Care. You need it done – We make it happen. FREE Estimates. Call 336669-6456. (Owner, Rob Newman)

TREE SERVICES Drew’s Tree Service – Removal & Pruning. 30 yrs experience. ISA Certified. Reasonable Rates. Fully Insured. Call 336-312-0448 Triad Tree and Lawn Care. Offering Tree Removal and Stump Grinding Service. Free Estimates. Bonded. Licensed. Insured. Call 336-991-1496.

FIREWOOD Firewood for sale. Seasoned hardwood. Delivery. Pickup load $80 stacked. Dumptruck load $325. Call 336-988-1022

If You’re Seeing This Then So Are Your Potential Customers.

Page 46

Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

13 Weeks: $260* *Pre-pay & Receive 15% OFF: • (336) 544-1952 Better Selection...Better Service... Better Quality uality uality y

*Pre-pay & Receive 15% OFF: $331 CALL FOR SPRING SAVINGS


Lawn & Home Care

You need it done

We make it happen


336-669-6456 Owner Rob Newman

Big Howard’s

Junk Removal Residential & Commercial House • Attic • Basement • Garage Yard Debris • Office • Foreclosure Storage Building • Rental Property

FREE ESTIMATES! 337-0642 or 339-0638 • Howard Staley, Owner

Carolina Self Storage A Quality Facility with Low Rates Located at 501 Liberty Rd., Archdale, (across from Brookwood Apts.) On site management | Hablar Espanol

(336) 434-4367

Southern SafeS & VaultS, Inc.

come VISIt uS at our new locatIon 1106 N O’Henry Blvd

(just off of Bessemer Avenue) Greensboro, NC 27405 • Protect your valuables • Safes for homes & businesses • Gun safes

• Quality products • Personalized customer service • Professional repairs & delivery

Mon-Fri 8a - 5p



Safes & Vaults, Inc. Adult HorsebAck riding lessons pAckAge of 4 one Hour lessons $99.

Regular price $180

Pleasure rides available for experienced riders prices start at $35.

For times and more information call (336) 963-3703

Automotive Repair Center We can solve that “Check Engine” light problem • Catalytic Converters • Engine Work • Mufflers • Brakes • Performance Exhaust Serving Greensboro “We weld our exhaust systems for over 20 like the factory does — a better job for you, our valued Years Hours: M-F 8:00am-5:30pm customer.” 716 Camann Street | Greensboro, NC 27407


• Handyman work • Painting • Remodeling • Siding • Windows • All types of home repairs

spring garden construction co.

Sheetrock Service • Textured Ceilings • Plaster Repair • Painting Interior/ Exterior • Remodeling • Carpentry Painting of Textured Ceilings Father Son


“No Job Too Small”



Licensed & Insured Free Estimates!


336.918.6528 •


Bonded • Licensed • Insured

Limited number of packages available


Brick • Block • Stone Concrete • Repairs

FREE ESTIMATES 336.991.1496


Rent a unit and receive a

$25 gas card


7360 W. FRIENDLY AVE., STE 116, GREENSBORO, NC 336-856-2311

A DREAM HOME BuSiNESS Make up to $150 an hour and more performing a service that’s in high demand in most homes and businesses.


This is an exclusive offer from DRY-TECH, an innovative leader in the carpet and upholstery cleaning industry. They developed a groundbreaking method of dry cleaning carpets using a lightweight, compact and portable machine. It makes other cleaning methods obsolete. It cleans better and faster than traditional systems and leaves carpets dry within an hour. This major advance will create an unprecedented service demand. DRY-TECH needs service providers NOW! It’s your opportunity to become financially independent in the next 3 to 5 years. DRY-TECH will show you how and set you up with everything you need.


fREE Report


Attn: Eric Levine, PROMO # CL 37718 19871 Nordhoff St. Northridge, CA 91324


5538 Jason Road • Greensboro, NC 27405

Mike & Jeff 336.375.3515 Prime Office Space

FOR LEASE 1200 sf 218 W. W. Market St. Across from Old Court House Includes Parking

(336) 282-3773

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Real Estate

Call: Melissa (336) 544-1952

Email: Deadline: Friday by 5pm Online: Fax: (336) 273-0821

Rhinofieds Our Policy Review your ad the 1st week it runs. If you notice an error, please call the Classified Department at 5441952. We cannot be responsible for errors reported after the 1st week of publication. Liability shall not exceed the cost of that portion of space occupied by such an error. We make every effort to print only those ads deemed credible & reserve the right to correctly classify & edit copy & reject or cancel any advertisement at any time. Early cancellation or withdrawal of ads does not entitle the purchaser to a discount or refund.

ANNOUNCEMENTS Beware of loan fraud. Please check with the Better Business Bureau or Consumer Protection Agency before sending any money to any loan company. SAPA Test drive a career in real estate! Visit Coldwell Banker Triad, Realtors.

AUCTIONS John C. Pegg Auction & Appraisal During a recent 30 day period We sold ONE commercial building, ONE large farm and all associated equipment, TWO vacant lots, and SEVEN single family homes! Our magic may work for you as well. Contact the Genie today. 336-996-4414 – Professional Auctioneer and Liquidator of Real Estate and Chattel of any type. Visit us at www. and see who we are and what we do.

FOR RENT Apts for Rent – 4br/2ba apts. $795- $850/mo. Call 336-355-9079. Pictures at www.triadrentalhomes. com. Triad Investors Realty, Inc. Battle Forest. Spacious 3br/2.5ba, 2-story townhome, appls, fenced patio, pool privilege. $850/mo. Rent-A-Home @ 336-272-0767. www. Adams Farms. 3br/2ba, one level townhome. C/A, all appls, fenced patio. $975/mo. Rent-A-Home @ 336-272-0767. AFFORDABLE LUXURY FOR 55+ Admiral Pointe Apartments in High Point now leasing BRAND NEW 1BR Apartment Homes at Affordable Rates! Call us today to ask about our AMAZING MOVE IN SPECIAL! 336-307-2414



Selling your home? Let me help. Call 544-1952. All real estate advertised in this newspaper is subject to the federal EQUAL HOUSING and state Fair Housing Act which OPPORTUNITY makes it illegal to advertise “any preference, limitation or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin, or an intention to make any such preference, limitation, or discrimination.” The newspaper will not knowingly accept any advertising for real estate which is in violation of the law. All persons are hereby informed that all dwellings advertised are available on an equal opportunity basis.


RHINO RATES: 1-3 lines - 4 weeks, $25 | 4-6 lines - 4 weeks, $35

office space available 422 BATTLEGROUND AVE

Approx 600 sq ft $495, Entry-foyer/ office space. 2 Restrooms/small loft space

Apt FOR RENt 4 BR / 2 BA Apts.

$795-$850/mo 336-355-9079

Triad Investors Realty, Inc.


290 Post Oak - Outstanding 3BR/2BA brick home w/ basement,2 car garage, fenced backyard, updated deck, new roof, vinyl replacement windows, kitchen with slate tile counter and much more. $209,900 Call John Owens with Ray Realty @ 317-2266.


for leaSe Fenced in backyard. Outside city limits. Good location. Easy access to I40/85. Call 336-274-5095 leave msg if no answer.



Mosby Oaks

WHY RENT WHEN YOU CAN OWN? We maintain an inventory of owner-financed homes. All Credit OK! No Banks Needed! Best Landlords! Best Properties!


FOR SALE BY OWNER 4815-E Tower Rd. 3BR/2.5BA, 2-story end unit, great location. New carpet. Tile floors in entry, hallway, kit. Lrg living rm w fireplace, formal dining rm, bright kit w/ bay window, sunroom/office. Fenced in patio. Move in condition & priced to sell. $107,900, Call Bob, Owner, 336-707-0985.

Historic Mary Fisher Frazier House! Charming Storybook Victorian Home. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places with the Department of Interior. Beautiful four bedroom home for residential use, and a gardeners dream. Also may be utilized as professional offices, as there is a dual zoning on this parcel (presently zoned for residential or professional offices). Adjacent lot may also be available for purchase (additional parking). Near Downtown High Point, Main Street, and High Point Regional Hospital, UNCG area Schools and Commercial Properties. This unique 1 & 2BR Apts home features hard wood floors, large rooms. Newly Appls, A/C, character galore renovated both externally and internally. Roof 5 years $395-$625 old. The yard is a gardeners paradise with nearly 50 Rent-A-Home species of fruit trees from the world over. Wrap around (336) 272-0767 front porch. We are in the final stage of a three year renovation project and will be sanding and epoxying NW Schools. 3br/2ba ranch, heat pump, C/A, appls, the hardwood floors. $215,000. Call 336-889-9408 fireplace. $995/mo. Rent-A-Home @ (336) 2720767. 2 Bedroom Townhouse Apts. $400 month 3806-14 Mosby Dr. Off Merritt Dr. 336-379-8384 Knight Rentals

Vacant Land. 2210 Freeman Mill Road. Presently zoned RS-7 this large 6 +/- track is convenient to I-85, I-40, US 220 and downtown Greensboro, almost 500 feet of road frontage. Rezone to meet your needs. $299,900

Call John Owens at

7 Suburban Ct - 3/2 ranch on cul-de-sac off Alamance Church Rd. Completely renovated including all new appliances, $75,000, 336-453-5128 for appt. Pictures BR, exercise rm, play rm . Screened porch, large at lot. 2 car large garage . Beautiful details! Fabulous quiet nhood. $529,900. Allen Tate Realtors, Bobbie Call me for any questions or to help you find your Maynard, 336-215-8017 new home. Pam Staples, REALTOR ®/ Broker, Allen Tate Realtors. (336) 210-9776 http://www. 3212 Hobbs Landing Ct, Hobbs Landing. 4BR/3 1/2 BA. 2009 Parade of Homes! Custom designed home loaded w/many features. Decorator touches 1707 Colonial Ave, Gso. Heart Of Kirkwood. Recently thruout. Abundance of living space. Kit w/custom renovated 3BR/2BA apx. 1900 sqft home. Perfect for designed cabinets, banquette table/chairs, SS, gas everyone from downsizers to 1st time homebuyers. cook top & FP. M/L mstr suite w/sitting area & bath New Kitchen w/Cabs & Granite, new Bath, Tankless w/porcelain deep soaking pedestal tub. Library w/ H20 & more. $229,900. Call Gil Vaughan-Prudential built in bookcases, file cabinets. Downstairs has 10’ ceilings, up 9’. Cozy up to one of 3 FPs. Fantastic Yost&Little Realty-337-4780 game/media room w/wet bar. 3 seasons screened 8233 Ipswich Ct, Summerfield. Honey! We Need porch. Home has EPA Energy Star rating & is Green Bigger Bedrooms! Why settle for tiny BR’s when you Home certified. Cul-d-sac close to shops/restaurants. spend 1/3 of your life in them. 4 Huge BR’s or 3 BR’s $745,000 Allen Tate Realtors, Bobbie Maynard, 336plus Bonus & expansion space. Granite, Island, Sit-up 215-8017 Bar, Stamped Concrete Patio. N’hood pool. Northern HS. $449,900-Call Gil Vaughan-Prudential Yost & 8141 Sangiovese, Arbor Run. 4BR/3 1/2 BA. Featured 2009 Parade of Homes. GC schools, K’Ville Little-337-4780 P.O. box. Amazing home loaded w/custom features. 5704 Chinaberry Place, Gso. Charming and Vaulted ceilings, dramatic stair, 2 story stone FP in Immaculate 3BR/2BA/2 car home with Open Floor G/R, bricked FP in keeping room, plus 1 more FP in plan that accommodates any lifestyle. A Huge & mstr suite. Hwds. Custom kit w/granite, large island, Fenced Back Yard. Shopping/Eating are closeby. SS appli. Spac mstr suite w/large walk in closet. Co. Taxes and 100% USDA Financing Eligible. Decorator neutral paint. Fantastic game/media room w/wet bar. Covered porch front and back. 3 car $123,900- Call Gil Vaughan-Prudential Yost&Little garage, oversized lot. Beautiful details! $557,900. Realty-337-4780 Allen Tate Realtors, Bobbie Maynard, 336-215-8017 6 Ashway Ct, Gso. Updated & Immaculate Home in the heart of Adams Farm. Nestled on cul-de-sac w/fenced back yard, this 4BR/2.5BA/2Car home w/many updated items-Hardwoods up & down, Screened Porch, SS Appl’s & Kitchen Isle. Home Warranty! $219,900-Gil Vaughan-Prudential Yost & Little-337-4780

8300 Banager Rd, Stafford Farm Estates. 4 BR/ 4 1/2 BA. Like new home, abundance of living space. Spac ML mstr suite w/tray ceiling. Upgraded finishes, dramatic stairway, awesome kit w/island, granite, SS appli, breakfast room. L/R would make great office/ library. Finished walk out bsmt w/den, workout room, surround sound, extra storage. 2nd level bonus rm w/ built-ins, space for pool table or media room. 3 car 108 Thora. 4Br/2.5Ba. Beautiful open plan in popular side entry garage, screened porch, large backyard. Whittington Hall. Kit w/bfst open to family rm w/ Beautiful details thruout. $512,000 island, SS appli, solid surf ctops, new can lights, pendant lighting. Updated fixtures throut, eve and 3395 Springsong, Sunnybrook-Summerfield. 3 BR, 2 attic storage, front and back stairs to UL. Large bonus 1/2 bath. Seller offering $5000 Paint Allowance. In rm w/extra nook for Craft or sewing rm. Huge deck w/ serene Summerfield. Totally renovated, spac home, beautifully landscaped .60 acre lot. Spac garage w/ vaulted ceilings, designer touches. Private large storage nook. Sprinkler system. Short walk to n’hood landscaped yard w/multi-level new reinforced deck. pool, playground. $359,900. Angie Wilkie, Allen Tate, Kit w/granite, tiled bksplsh, wormy maple wainscoting. ML mstr suite w/amazing bath. LR w/exotic hdwds, (336) 451-9519 wood burning FP. New carpet, updated bathrms w/ 1009 Northwood, Gso, $159,000. Opportunity for designer finishes. Loft/bonus room. Huge walk out potential short sale in great location. UL in process of unfin basement. Oversized garage, storage shed. conversion to mstr suite and full bath. Enclosed back Northern schools. $299,900. Allen Tate Realtors, porch Addition/mud rm needs completion. Currently Bobbie Maynard, 336-215-8017 1 bdrm, full bath ML. Hdwds thruout; decorative tile floors in kit; gas FP. Add’l rm off kit w/ W/D hookups Weatherstone Townhome Lot 219 – 4375 Weatherton could be converted. 1-car detached garage; fenced Dr, Kernersville, 2 mstr BRs/2 BA, 1 car garage, cathedral clgs, skylights in GR, curved roof elevation, bkyrd. Angie Wilkie. Allen Tate, 336-451-9519 spac kit/dining area, 1417 SF, $129,900 – Call Sarah Draughn, Shugart Enterprises, 336-283-9809

(336) 317-2266 1859 Longmont Dr, Kernersville. 3BR/2.5BA, 1908 sf w/loft area. Beautiful kit w/ceramic backsplash, upgraded black kit appliances. Great incentives available!! Priced at $147,900. Call Sarah Draughn, Shugart Enterprises at 336-283-9809

1003 W. Cornwallis Dr - $674,900. Irving Park Gem. 5bd/3 bath home filled w/quality & craftsmanship that can’t be found today. Extensive moldings, slate roof, extensive recessed lights, multitude of built-ins, antique paneling, hdwds thruout, four FPs, large spacious rooms, all completely updated w/renovated kit w/SS appli, granite ctops, gas cooktop, extensive cabinets. Mstr bath updated e/new cabinets, marble floor & ctops, garden tub, sep shower. All Situated on large lot. Not to be missed – hard to find today. Michelle Porter, Allen Tate Realtors, (336) 207-0515. 2405 Pineview- $79,400 - Well-kept bungalow on dead end street. Excellent opportunity for owner occupant or investor. 3rd bdrm can be add’l living area or DR. Deck e/privacy fence, hdwd floors throut. Large back yard w/lots of privacy. Kit and laundry room w/ new vinyl flooring. Lots of space for the money. Gas furnace – Dec 2011, Water heater – Oct 2010, Roof – 2009 per seller. Home warranty. Michelle Porter, Allen Tate Realtors, (336) 207-0515. 3-F Fountain Manor Dr. $171,000 - Take advantage of this wonderful 3bd/2.1 bath. Ready for you to make your own. Open floor plan w/large rooms, high ceilings, eat in kit, spacious brick patio that backs to private common area. 2nd floor mstr w/room for sitting or dressing area, large en suite bathrm. New carpet thruout. Priced to sell. Welcome home. Michelle Porter, Allen Tate Realtors, (336) 207-0515. 1902 Efland Dr. $178,599. 3bd/1 .1 bath. Kirkwood area potential short sale w/much to offer. All brick exterior & vinyl windows are maintenance free, large lot w/privacy and fenced yard, two car garage is a rare find for this location. Fully remodeled interior – open floor plan, hdwds, HVAC in 2010, sunroom, updated kit w/granite ctops, solid wood cabinets. Finished basement not included in square footage – perfect for bonus rm/man cave or whatever your needs may be. Builder owned. Michelle Porter, Allen Tate Realtors, (336) 207-0515. 3815 Meredith Dr- $599,000. Irving Park Finest! Brick sidewalk to covered front entry speaks to charm, character found thruout home. Superb quality, beautiful details – hdwds, tile floors, lots of millwork, built-ins, plantation shutters, 2” blinds. Updated kit w/expansive granite ctops, including huge island w/ task sink, eating bar & second raised eating bar, display cabinet, task desk, built-in ovens (new 2008), 5-burner gas cook-top, dishwasher, spac pantry, temp-controlled wine cellar. Lovely mstr suite w/ gas FP flanked by built-ins, ensuite bath w/dual-sink vanity, built-in storage, jetted tub, sep shwr, built-in ironing board, spac walk-in closet. Offers 5 bdrms, plus formal rooms w/bay windows, den w/wet bar, gas FP, built-ins, four add’l bdrms, 1 w/private bath, bonus rm w/built-ins, plumbing avail for sink, sauna, workshop, great storage, 3-car garage. Deck and wonderful back yard. Michelle Porter, Allen Tate Realtors, (336) 207-0515.

507 Creek Ridge

Great Investor or Move- In Ready! Northwest Condo,


Houses & Apts For Rent Lambeth-Osborne Realty 214 W. Market St. (336) 272-3163


Call John Owens at

Weatherstone Lot 243 – 4354 Portico Ln, Kernersville, 3 BR/2 BA, 2 car garage, Eat-in breakfast room, black 7707 Alcorn Rd, Gso, $369,000. 6.49 acres, NW appli, tile backsplash in kit, FP can be added, 1521 sf, School district. Lovely setting, rocking chair front $149,070 – Call Sarah Draughn, Shugart Enterprises porch, Koi pond, circle drive. 2 stall Morton barn w/ at 336-283-9809 tack rm, fenced pasture/lawn. Screen porch, tree bordered backyard. ML mstr w/updated bath, large 3103 Diana Circle, Burlington, 4BR/2.5BA, 2739 sf. walk in closet. Angie Wilkie. Allen Tate, 336-451- Brick and stone elevation, 9’ smooth ceilings, FP, granite ctops, kit island, tray ceiling in mstr. Priced at 9519 $199,920. Call Scott Goodson, Shugart Enterprises 4905 Leadenhall, Staffordshire Estates/Oak Ridge. at 336-270-5230 4 BR/ 3 1/2 BA. Amazing home, loaded w/custom features. Dramatic 2 story entry, dramatic stairway Weatherstone 82 – 1672 Ridgestone Ln, Kernersville, . Stone wall w/ FP in great rm. Gourmet kit w/ 3 BR/2 BA, Finished bonus room above 2 car garage, granite, SS, awesome island. Cozy keeping rm w/ partial stone front, covered front porch, DR + bfst another stone FP. ML mstr suite and office. Decorator room, 2091 sf, $169,900 – Call Sarah Draughn, neutral paint. Bonus rm, finished basement w/ 4th Shugart Enterprises, 336-283-9809.

Selling your home? Let me help… Call 544-1952.

Special Rates: One bedroom garden Apt. $415/mo Two bedroom garden Apt. $475/mo Desirable 3307 N. Elm St location 336-288-5755 or 379-8384 Knight Rentals

Sullivan’s Lake 2BR/2BA one level end unit with light interior paint, vaulted ceilings, open floor plan, lots of built-ins and fireplace.

(336) 317-2266

2303 Albright, Gso, $104,900. Immaculate 2bd/1ba charmer in Guilford Hills. Designer paint colors throut, beautiful hdwds, deck, plenty of nat’l light. Recent 1500 Elwood Avenue. 2BR/1BA vinyl home with large addition would make perfect office. Tons of updates – front porch, convenient to UNC-G, fenced backyard. new vinyl ‘11, new addition ‘11, furnace replaced ‘07, $49,900. Call John Owens with Ray Realty @ 317- water heater replaced ‘05, AC replaced ‘05, windows replaced ‘03. Angie Wilkie. Allen Tate, 336-451-9519 2266


Small 2br/1ba

2800 Spring House Place


2728 Stratford Drive - Wonderful 2BR/1.5BA ranch home with garage, fenced backyard, vinyl siding, updated bathroom, designer paint, beautiful wood floors and more. $124,900. Call John Owens with Ray Realty @ 317-2266

Approx 1424 sq ft $650 Large open space/office in back

Page 47

1.08 acres zoned RM-18 - $150,000

503 Creek Ridge

.85 Acres Zoned RM -18 - $125,000

3708 Mosby Drive

Charming Storybook Victorian Home. Open House Every Sunday 2-5pm Or Call For Appt. Beautiful four bedroom home for residential use, or professional offices Near Downtown High Point, Main Street, and High Point Regional Hospital, Schools and Commercial Properties. Newly renovated both externally and internally. Roof 5 years old. The yard is a gardeners paradise with nearly 50 species of fruit trees from the world over. $215,000

(336) 889-9408

Well maintained 3BR/1BA brick ranch home with updated HVAC, beautiful hardwood floors, new interior paint, updated bathroom, large kitchen with lots of cabinets & counter space, 12 x 24 wired storage building negotiable.

$79,900 Call John Owens at

(336) 317-2266

2514 Florida St. Zoned RS7 - $22,000

2516 Florida St. Zoned RS7 - $22,000

2513 Rowe St. Zoned RS7 - $22,000

Call John Owens at (336) 317-2266

Page 48

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Budget (Continued from page 1) Republicans on the nine-member board have expressed a huge aversion to raising taxes this year. The commissioners are expected to adopt the next budget in June. The committee has three Republican commissioners – committee chair Jeff Phillips, Hank Henning and Alan Branson. Commissioner Bruce Davis is the only Democrat on the committee, At the March 27 meeting, Guilford Technical Community College (GTCC) got its chance to ask the committee for more funds in the next budget. Representatives of the college cited a growing student population and the addition of new campuses as the main reason the county needs to spend more on GTCC than it has in the past. GTCC President Randy Parker said at the meeting that the college is providing much needed training for the county’s work force. He said the school was helping students move out of minimum wage jobs and get work with companies like HondaJet and TIMCO Aviation Services, where they earn almost twice the minimum wage if not more. He said the average age of GTCC students varies between 28 and 32, depending on the health of the economy. “They need help and it’s important for us to help them,” Parker said. Davis told the educators that he knew the work of the community college first hand. “I went to GTCC at 40,” he said. Davis, a former Marine who now owns and operates a daycare in High Point, joked that his GTCC education hadn’t helped him much when it came to his income. “I still probably make minimum wage,” Davis said, “so I don’t know what happened there.” Last June, Guilford County gave GTCC $11.7 million in operating funds, and Parker told the budget committee that the college needs an additional $1.4 million for the coming fiscal year. Parker said the

college has done a good job of keeping costs down, but with new facilities and all the new bills that come with that, he added, additional funding is needed. Guilford County has kept its community college funding steady in recent years, but Parker said that GTCC has seen cuts from other funding sources, and those cuts have taken a toll. Only about 6 percent of the school’s funding comes from the county – 51 percent comes from tuition while the state pays 33 percent. Just under 10 percent comes from other sources such as student fees and bookstore revenues. “In the last four years, we’ve grown over 40 percent in terms of students we serve, but funding has gone down 30 percent,” Parker told the committee. He said GTCC was now the third largest community college in the state and the sixth largest school overall. Parker said the funding from the county was critical because money from other sources comes with strings attached. Much of that money by law can only be used for specific purposes. “It’s not like the savings account we have at home,” he said. Parker also said he was aware that other counties had cut community college funding in recent years in the wake of the financial crisis. “Thank you for keeping our budget flat,” he said, adding quickly that the community college needed more money in 2013-2014. “We can’t continue to absorb the cuts,” he said. “We’ve done about all we can do.” In addition to the $11.7 million in operating costs that the county is paying in the current year for GTCC, it’s also spending $12 million for debt service on community college bonds. The request for an additional $1.4 million from GTCC came just moments after Guilford County Schools officials appeared before the Budget Committee and made a pitch for more money for the

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The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

county’s public schools. At the committee meeting, school administrators and Board of Education members didn’t request a specific amount of money in the upcoming county budget. However, in a school board meeting the next day, on Thursday, March 28, Superintendent of Guilford County Schools Mo Green said he would request $189 million in operating funds from the county for fiscal 2013-2014. That’s roughly $14 million more than the $175 million the county gave the schools for fiscal 20122013. Green also requested $10 million in capital funds from Guilford County for school system maintenance and repairs, which is five times more than the $2 million the county has in the current budget for that purpose. In the county’s estimates, Guilford County budget officials had projected $175 million for the school’s operating expenses in 2013-2014, along with $4 million for school capital expenditures. The gap between the county’s projections and school requests comes to about $19 million. As a rule of thumb, a tax rate increase of 1 cent per $100 of property value raises roughly $4 million in revenue, which means Guilford County would need to impose an additional 5-cent property tax increase just to fully fund the schools’ request. At the March 27 Budget Committee meeting, Finance Director Reid Baker and Budget Director Michael Halford seemed to agree that Guilford County would be able to cut some costs in the next year by not issuing all the school bonds planned for 2013-2014. Issuing bonds is government speak for borrowing money. If the county doesn’t borrow the money then it doesn’t have to pay it back. The schools have untold millions in the bank, but only God and the schools know how much. Baker told the committee that some bond issuances could be postponed without ruffling too many feathers.



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“The needs are not as great as we have budgeted,” Baker said. Halford concurred. “That looks like a strong possibility to relive some debt,” Halford said. The estimate being kicked around is that the county may be able to save – or rather put off – about $14.3 million in debt service in the next county budget by pushing some debt further out. This week, Phillips said the move doesn’t address the problem. “It’s helpful, but it’s not a solution,” Phillips said. He said Guilford County is heading down a very dangerous road. Phillips also said that, with all this debt on the horizon, an unexpected financial crisis could put the county in a disastrous situation that might “force our hand.” “The bottom line is that, if we’re not careful, we could put critical county services at risk,” he said. The next meeting of the budget committee is Wednesday, April 10. The committee is scheduled to meet twice after that, before the county manager presents a budget proposal on Thursday, May 16. The first two budget committee meetings have generated an interesting side story: The first two meetings may have been illegal meetings. At the first meeting on Wednesday, March 13, Commissioner Carolyn Coleman came in about 20 minutes after the meeting started and took a seat at the table with the four commissioners who are actually on the committee, and Coleman began chiming in and asking questions. The problem is that the addition of Coleman meant there were five commissioners – a quorum – which in turn meant that the legal meeting of the four-man budget committee had transformed into what was perhaps an illegal meeting of the Guilford County Board of Commissioners. The state’s open meetings law dictates that the public must be notified of (Continued on next page)


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Beep (Continued from page 10) %%% I just heard on the news that Hillary Clinton is for gay marriage. I didn’t know the Clintons were for marriage at all. %%% There is no way that a principal should make any more than the highest-paid teacher. The teachers are the ones who teach, who keep order and keep things under control. The principals do absolutely 100 percent nothing. It’s terrible. Thank you. %%% I would just like to say that the Concerned Citizens of Greensboro are exactly right. Most men sit in jail for nonsupport. Robbie Perkins sits in the mayor’s office. He also got away from welching on a loan from his former father-in-law. Greensboro deserves a mayor who isn’t a disgrace to the entire city. How do we get rid of this Teflon Don? Thank you. %%% Hey, Scott. There may be a couple of things you overlooked in your drive to get rich businessmen to relocate their businesses in

Budget (Continued from previous page) commissioners meetings 48 hours ahead of time. While there was notice of the budget committee meeting, there wasn’t any notice of a Board of Commissioners meeting. Ironically, at the first Budget Committee meeting, on Wednesday, March 13 – before Coleman showed up – Guilford County Attorney Mark Payne gave a presentation on the very subject. During that talk, Payne said the Budget Committee meetings were open to the public and that county commissioners who weren’t on the committee, just like any member of the public, were free to show up, but those commissioners would be just that – members of the public. Right after Payne gave that talk, Coleman popped in the room and took part in the discussion. Coleman also came to the March 27 meeting and joined in that conversation as well. Payne said this week that Coleman was at the two meetings as an ordinary citizen. He said she had been very respectful of that fact in her comments. Presumably, that means any citizen from Guilford County or any other county for that matter can come to the Budget Committee meetings, sit at the table with the commissioners and take part in the discussion. Payne said he’s aware of the issue, and he said that, now, just to be sure, the county will give public notice of the possibility of a commissioners meeting whenever there’s a Budget Committee meeting. “It’s probably overkill,” Payne said of the coming notifications, adding that it was a good idea to make the cautionary announcements nonetheless.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Guilford County. The working rich people probably don’t want to hang around with all the idle rich people we have here. Also, I’m sure they’d prefer that their wealth not get redistributed as people like to do in this town. %%% Hey, John, it doesn’t look like it’s we, the people, anymore. It’s like we, the government. All right. Bye. %%% Any fool out there ought to know that you can spend more money than you have coming in – it’s called credit. You get you a credit card. You buy things, and then you pay the minimum payment back on the credit card so that they will be satisfied. And, then, you can continue to go out and buy things. And if they won’t let you use that card, you can get another card and go out and buy things. And, yes, you have bought things with your credit cards that you have not had the money for. So, there are ways of doing that. So, these people that keep calling in – thanks, cut me off. I guess you get about a minute. %%% To the misinformed caller to the Beep who accused this Republican sheriff and Republican board for the parking debacle across from the new jail, it was a Democratcontrolled board that made that decision, and the Republican sheriff who stated that we should not be doing it just to set the record straight.

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Barbara Wolfe in the summer of 2012 with her copy of The Rhino Times in Zhujiajiao, China, a water town that was thriving before Marco Polo arrived and introduced the west to China.

IHM (Continued from page 4) bishop, as head of the diocese, owns and holds title to all church properties within the diocese. The school board has been looking for a new home for The Academy at Central at least since Nov. 28, 2012, when High Point Central supporters packing a large community forum forcefully called on Guilford County Schools to cancel its plan to build a $72 million high school in western Guilford County and to use some of the money to renovate Central, a historic school that is crowded and has been allowed to crumble. Usually ebullient and clear-spoken school board attorney Jill Wilson announced the option at the end of the school board’s Thursday, March 28 meeting, in the mumble she uses to announce the settlement of lawsuits against the school board. Her words were something along the lines of, “I’m pleased to announce to the board that mumble mumble option mumble mumble property. Mumble.” The school board doesn’t go out of its way to advertise property deals – or lawsuit settlements – even after they are no longer closed-session material. High Point Central supporters have been pressuring the school board to move the academy, and supporters of the academy have also supported the idea. The academy

and High Point Central now have to share facilities, and the academy doesn’t even have its own building, as Central uses some of the classrooms in the Tomlinson building. The Tomlinson building was originally Tomlinson Elementary School before being merged with Central, first as a ninth grade academy, then as The Academy at Central, a separate school that is not part of High Point Central. The idea of buying the old IHM Catholic School apparently edged out another proposal reportedly recommended by Guilford County Schools administrators: leasing a building owned by High Point Regional Hospital that is part of former High Point Medical Center in the block west of the hospital. The hospital bought most of that block from High Point Bank and Trust Co. in September 2010. The block, bordered by Quaker Lane and North Lindsay, Boulevard and Council streets, contains numerous buildings that were, for decades, the go-to place for people needing medical specialists in High Point, but many office condos in the complex are now empty. The Academy at Central has a medical services program, so putting it near the hospital would have made sense on one level – but the office buildings in the former High Point Medical Center block

are ill-suited for a school and would require extensive renovation. Guilford County Schools will have to do due diligence on the IHM Catholic School property, including inspections and environmental tests. The option agreement requires the school system to provide the diocese with an affidavit certifying the property’s satisfactory environmental condition before closing. The agreement provides that the option fee will be returned to the school system if the Board of Commissioners does not approve the purchase price. The option on the IHM Catholic School was delayed because Guilford County Schools was asking for a long option period, reportedly 15 months. That was longer than the church wanted to tie up the property. “They preferred a longer option period,” Thiel said. “We preferred a shorter option period. That’s kind of obvious. My feeling is we met somewhere in the middle.” Barring condition issues with the IHM Catholic School, the sale is expected to close much faster, perhaps allowing the school system to occupy the property before school begins in August. The IHM Catholic Church is scheduled to dedicate its new school on Sunday, August 11.

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Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

Rumors (Continued from page 45) how little trouble it will be, but when the city changed the name of Commerce Place last year to John Wesley Way at the request of West Market Street United Methodist Church, nobody thought that changing the name of what is a big alley would do any harm. But then came the national media to cover the John Edwards trial, and all of their GPS systems said they should turn

on Commerce Street, which no longer existed. Imagine the thousands looking for the Coliseum on Lee Street or High Point Road and all they can find is Robbie Perkins Boulevard. --The Google is the most amazing thing. I found a little note on my desk that said “China Capital,” no question mark, no phone number, no address, just those two

Yost (Continued from page 13) let you in on what’s up at old folks homes. I put a list together, and here are the Top 10 signs that old people are smoking the reefer in old folks homes … (10) Tommy Dorsey LP’s sound much better than before. (9) A dramatic rise in the number of Hoveround crashes in the hallways. (8) Overheard during dessert, “Excuse me, Edna, did you say pass the cinnamon or pass the sensimilla?” (7) Mrs. Taylor’s formerly highly unpopular prune pie is a big, big, hit due to the addition of one new “secret ingredient.” (6) In the vote on movie night, residents pass up On Golden Pond and go with On Acapulco Gold.

(5) AARP announces new line of signature bongs. (4) On game night, three residents shout out “Bingo!” after the first number is called. (3) No longer do you hear, “Hey, you kids get out of my yard!” – now it’s, “Hey kids, get out of my stash!” Did I say Top 10 things, because what I meant to say was Top 8. Anyway, something must be done to address this major problem. Or the next thing you know, senior citizens will be doing all the other stuff that college students do and that includes doing you know what if you know what I mean. So, please, won’t you help me stop the madness.

words in my handwriting. I couldn’t for the life of me remember why I had written that, so I asked The Google and found that it is a Chinese restaurant in High Point that Paul Norcross was going to when I was interviewing him about the new charter school legislation. Since Norcross spends quite a bit of time in China, and he recommended it, I thought it was a restaurant worth going to and wrote down the name. But without The Google I might have never put that conversation back together. ---

A good way to garner City Council support for an issue is to get declared mayoral candidate George Hartzman to come speak in favor of it. At Tuesday’s meeting, Councilmember Zack Matheny said if he found himself on the opposite side of an issue from Hartzman, he knew he was right. It appeared much of the council was in agreement with Matheny. They have to sit and listen to Hartzman drone on and on about topics that evidently only he understands. ---

Under (Continued from next page) British prime minister and the queen were embarrassing. Obama just doesn’t like the British. Maybe it’s his Irish heritage. But Obama should believe in the rule of law and the right of a people to determine their own government. Argentina is once again threatening to attempt to take the Falkland Islands from Great Britain. The United States, as one would expect considering our leadership or lack of same, is on the fence, even though the people of the Falklands voted in favor of remaining under British rule by a more than 99 percent margin. OK, so somebody on the island doesn’t want to be under

British rule, but everybody else does. Argentina’s claim to the Falklands boils down to the fact that the islands are much closer to Argentina than Great Britain. Alaska is a lot closer to Russia than it is to the rest of the United States, and it has a long border where it touches Canada. If either Canada or Russia laid claim to Alaska it is doubtful the US would pull out a map, ascertain that both were closer, and give them the keys. But Obama hates Great Britain and Obama hates to make decisions, so the US evidently will stay on the fence and give tacit support to Argentina, making our closest ally angry.

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro

It’s incredible the cover, rather than coverage, that President Barack Hussein Obama is still receiving from the mainstream media. Wherever the president goes – except when he plays golf at an exclusive multimillionaire-only golf club – there is at least a couple of pool reporters along for the trip. That was the case when Obama went to see the Syracuse and Marquette NCAA tournament game in Washington, DC, at the Verizon Center last weekend. When Obama was shown on the big screen the crowd erupted in boos and then cheers, but the boos were pretty loud. Yet the pool reporters traveling with Obama, who are supposed to report on the president’s activities for the rest of the press corps, couldn’t hear the boos. Isn’t that incredible? Fortunately this was a basketball game with lots of media there, and some of them had not been indoctrinated into the “How to Cover Obama Club.” They reported the boos, and the television broadcast didn’t redact them, so they are there for anybody who has access to YouTube to hear. It is not incredible that he was booed considering the state of the economy, but it is incredible that the reporters whose job is to travel with the president and provide an unbiased accounting of what he does and what happens around him couldn’t hear the boos and didn’t report that the president was booed in Washington, DC, one of the most liberal cities in the country.

,,, And speaking of basketball games, The Washington Times has an opinion piece on how President George Walker Bush quit attending sporting events when he realized how much of a hassle it was for the fans to have the president in attendance, not to mention the added cost. Obama evidently doesn’t give a hoot about how much trouble it causes for the average citizen, and he certainly doesn’t care about the expense. Imagine the additional expense for Obama to attend a basketball game compared to if he sat at home and watched it on television. The country under the rule of Obama can afford to pay for the Obama family to travel around the country, play golf, swim and ski at the most expensive resorts in the world, but it can’t afford to pay for school children to tour the White House. In fact, during spring break Obama’s daughters went to the Bahamas and then went skiing. They are living like billionaires and it’s mostly on the government dole. Speaking of basketball, if you are not a fan of Obama then you need to watch the video of Obama shooting basketball at the White House Easter Egg Roll on Monday. He made two of 22, and one of the two was a layup. He may need to quit playing golf all the time and spend some time on the courts. He probably doesn’t read Under the Hammer, but if he does, one of his problems is that he is punching his shot.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

,,, OK, it’s official, The New York Times, the newspaper of record for the United States, doesn’t know what Christians are celebrating at Easter. It is sad but not surprising that the reporter The New York Times has covering the Roman Catholic Church, the Vatican and the new pope doesn’t know the basics of Christianity. I mean, my goodness, who would expect the reporter who is covering the Catholic Church to know anything about religion; when would that come up? But it is shocking that none of the editors at The New York Times knew what was being celebrated at Easter. The New York Times ran an article about Pope Francis I that states, “Easter is the celebration of the resurrection into heaven of Jesus, three days after he was crucified, the premise for the Christian belief in an everlasting life.” There are so many things wrong with that statement it’s hard to know where to start. But even the correction they ran was wrong. It states, “An earlier version of this article mischaracterized the Christian holiday of Easter. It is the celebration of Jesus’s resurrection from the dead, not his resurrection into heaven.” Huh. Jesus ascended into heaven. He wasn’t resurrected into heaven. But really, can you imagine The New York Times sending a reporter to the Super Bowl who wrote about a team scoring a homerun instead of a touchdown? Can you imagine sending a reporter to cover the US Supreme Court who wrote that the court was elected every four years by a vote of the people? What about a science writer who wrote that the State of Pennsylvania was decimated by the nuclear accident at Three Mile Island with half the population killed or seriously injured by the catastrophe. The New York Times probably has written that, although the truth is that no one was even hospitalized as a result of the Three Mile Island nuclear accident. In other words, the average traffic accident on the interstate where someone is taken to the emergency room has more casualties than Three Mile Island, but they never report that either. But The New York Times will send a reporter to cover the pope who doesn’t even know the basics tenants of Christianity. It should be astounding but it is not. On the up side of that, at least they knew it was Easter that was being celebrated. The lesson here is don’t believe anything you read in The New York Times about religion, because they don’t know anything.

,,, If you happen to be a Republican, or even a conservative Democrat, you should be excited about what the Republican-led North Carolina state legislature is doing. When you’ve been out of power for 140

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years like Republicans have, it takes some doing to undo all that has been done to you, but the Republicans in the state House and Senate are getting to it. A bill has already been introduced to fix the Jordan Lake Rules, which were, over time, going to cost Greensboro hundreds of millions of dollars. But showing just how out of touch the Greensboro City Council is, or what a good old boy and girl network it is, the City Council was ready to hire Marlene Sanford of the Triad Real Estate and Building Industry Coalition (TREBIC), at a price of $25,000, to lobby for the city. If Sanford had been a little quicker she could have pocketed the money and taken credit for the bill, which was introduced last week and will pass by an overwhelming margin without her help. The most powerful man in the legislature lives right up the road in Eden and represents a big chunk of Guilford County and Greensboro. President Pro Tem of the Senate Phil Berger isn’t going to let state government destroy development in Greensboro on his watch. The idea that he would let it happen is absurd. But Mayor Robbie Perkins likes to take care of his people with the city’s money. He got his campaign manager, Ross Harris, a good paying job (unofficially over $100,000 a year) working on the Greensboro performing arts center project. She was paid with city money that passed through the Community Foundation, so it is not yet a matter of public record. There was no rational reason to pay Sanford when a telephone call to former Greensboro City Councilmember and current state Sen. Trudy Wade would have been enough to inform the city that the Jordan Lake Rules were being taken care of. Plus, Berger himself told the City Council when he met with them earlier this year that the problems with Jordan Lake Rules would be handled this year. It appeared that Councilmember Tony Wilkins put a stop to the idea of hiring a lobbyist for Jordan Lake Rules. The problem with the Jordan Lake Rules was that the bureaucracy had taken on life of its own – the patients had taken over the insane asylum. Some people claim to be environmentalists, but really what they are is private enterprise haters. With the Jordan Lake Rules the folks in the state government who hate private enterprise saw a wide open door to heavily restrict development in this area, and under the Democratic rule they were allowed to take it. Republicans tend to like private enterprise and see the problem differently.

,,, The world is a scary place and sometimes it seems with instantaneous news we know more than is good for us. North Korea is always scary, but with its new leader, Kim Jong-un, who is less than 30 years old, the fright quotient has increased by

By John Hammer geometric proportions. His father, Kim Jong-il, appeared to be a nutcase, but he also never went too far. He would posture and protest but he never actually started a war. Nobody knows what his son might do. He might launch a missile aimed at who knows what. He might order 100,000 troops to attack South Korea just to see what war looks like. But there is something going on in the world that is scarier than Kim Jong-un, and that is what is taking place in the European Union (EU), and more particularly in Cyprus. People have been wondering when Germany would stop supporting southern Europe. It would appear that we have found out and it isn’t pretty. Germany, through the EU, said to Cyprus – you come up with some money or we won’t loan you another dime. Cyprus then, at the demand of the EU (Germany), stole money out of bank accounts. If the EU can take money out of people’s bank accounts, what is to stop the United States government from doing the same? If people can’t trust banks, and they cannot, who can they trust with their money? Sleeping with a couple of hundred thousand dollars under your mattress doesn’t sound very comfortable, but the real problem is that if people stop putting money in banks then banks don’t have money to lend. The whole financial system breaks down if people lose their trust in the banking system. And what reason do we have to trust the banking system, since it just stole billions of dollars from private citizens in Cypress? Here in the US we are separated from those troubles by an ocean, and we do have our own government. But what about the people in Greece, Spain, Italy and Portugal? Now the handwriting is on the wall. People who lose money taken by the banks in any of those countries have no one to blame but themselves. What is going to happen to the banking system in Europe? Perhaps the Germans plan on having the only safe banks in Europe. It appears the pressure on those countries with severe economic problems to drop the Euro and go back to their own currencies would be enormous. If they go back to their own currency they take a huge financial hit, but the Germans can’t tell them to steal money from their own people. Maybe there is a master plan somewhere but it’s hard to see what it is.

,,, Great Britain and the United States are supposed to have a special relationship, or we did before the people of this country elected Obama president twice. One of his first acts as president was to send a bust of Winston Churchill that sat in Oval Office back to England. His gifts to the (Continued on previous page)

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Thursday, April 4, 2013

The Rhinoceros Times Greensboro


County Budget Cycle in Full Swing, City Council Dives Deeper Into Secrecy, Price Schools Board on Bill