BladenOnline.com

Bladen County's top website for news, sports, advertising and more!

Congressman Pittenger: FEMA Awards An Additional $5.1 million to Robeson County for Matthew

LUMBERTON – Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) today announced the Federal Emergency Management Agency will provide North Carolina with an additional $5.1 million to assist with Hurricane Matthew recovery efforts. ·        The Housing Authority of Lumberton will receive $1,522,651 to repair 16 units at the Myers Park complex damaged by Hurricane Matthew. ·        The Housing Authority of Lumberton will separately receive $2,430,766 to repair 12 additional housing units. ·        The Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina will receive $1,162,454 to repair an earthen dam and spillway damaged by Hurricane Matthew. “Hurricane Matthew recovery has been my priority since I-95 was still underwater,” said Congressman Pittenger.  “My team and I consider this a ministry, and while federal and state bureaucracy can be …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Late Sunday night NFL action: New England Patriots 23 – Atlanta Falcons 7. Tonight – Washington Redskins at Philadelphia, 8:30 p.m. on ESPN. Major League Baseball World Series begins Tuesday in LA at 8:09 PM on Fox.  Dodgers vs Astros.  No tickets available, except on Stub Hub, etc.  A quick search discovered a price range from $875 to $18,000 per seat for about 3 hours of entertainment. It has been another GREAT week for BladenOnline, despite a 16 percent drop in page views, it was still the second highest in the history of the online newspaper.  Monday, Oct. 16, there were 49,119 page views, the 4th highest ever, and 2 other days were …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Astros 4 – Yankees 0. Astros vs Dodgers in 2017 World Series. Charlie Morton and Lance McCullers, Jr. combine for shut out to oust Bronx Bombers. And for ECU fans: Pirates win over BYU Cougars 33-17. UNC soundly defeated by Va. Tech, 59-7. Duke loses to Georgia Tech. NC State had open date. No plans by ECU or UNC football fans to travel to a bowl game, unless some who attended another institution or likes another team invites them Continue to receive questions related to local high school football broadcast. Must have an FM radio station to carry games and none are available. The station in Whiteville was sold to …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Friday Night High School Football results: East Columbus unable to field a football team, East Bladen wins forfeit. St. Pauls 55 – West Bladen 28 Looking ahead, 2 games remaining in regular season play Next Friday: East Bladen at South Robeson South Columbus at West Bladen Nov. 3 – West Bladen at East Bladen Houston Astros defeated New York Yankees 7-1 in AL baseball playoffs Series tied at 3 all, tie breaker tonight in Houston, 8:08 PM. Winner plays LA Dodgers in World Series. College football today: 12:00 Noon  UNCP @ Concord (WV) 12:20 PM  Pittsburgh @ Duke 1:00 PM  Campbell @ Butler (Ind) 2:00 PM  Methodist U @Maryville (TN) 3:30 PM  …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger calls for hearings on opioid enforcement

WASHINGTON – This week, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) called on both the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and House Energy and Commerce Committee to hold hearings on the Drug Enforcement Agency’s ability to crack down on suspicious shipments of opioids. Congressman Pittenger’s request follows recent media reports, as well as opioid concerns expressed by constituents at town hall meetings. The House Energy and Commerce Committee has responded by scheduling a hearing on Wednesday, October 25th.  The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee has responded by requesting detailed information from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. “Opioid abuse is a crisis.  We must ensure the DEA has the appropriate …..

Read More

Rep. Brenden Jones Appointed to the North Carolina State Lottery Committee

Raleigh, NC – Representative Brenden Jones (R-Columbus, Robeson, Bladen) is pleased to announce that he has been appointed by the Speaker of the NC House of Representatives, Tim Moore, to serve as an Advisory Member on the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on the North Carolina State Lottery. This and other committees will meet during the interim when the General Assembly is not in session, with the goal of providing oversight into various area of state government. The committee will hear presentations from various experts on topics relevant to the focus of that committee. At the conclusion of each committee’s work, a report will be made to the General Assembly detailing …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Early voting is underway in the 2017 municipal elections!  Began yesterday.  A few highlights to consider.     Bladenboro has 3 candidates for Mayor: Rufus (Duck) Duckworth (I) Kenneth Kelly Larry Simmons And 4 candidates for 3 seats on the town board: Jeff Atkinson (I) Billy Ray Benson (I) Rodney Hester Greg Sykes Clarkton has 5 candidates for 2 seats on Town Council: Jerome Myers (I) Tim Tart (I) Linda Gaskins Stephen W Hester Jimmy Hudson Dublin has 2 candidates for Mayor: Darryl Dowless Alex Hursey And 2 candidates for 1 seat on Town Board: Jeff Smith (I) Richard Sibbett Elizabethtown Town Council (3 seats) Paula H Greene (I) Herman L …..

Read More

Tillis & Burr Applaud Senate Advancement of Thomas Farr Nomination

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Richard Burr (R-NC) applauded the Senate Judiciary Committee for advancing the nomination of Thomas Farr as District Judge for the Eastern District of North Carolina. Senator Tillis spoke at the Senate Judiciary Hearing in support of Mr. Farr, who now moves before the full Senate for consideration. Mr. Farr was nominated by President Trump at the recommendation of Senators Tillis and Burr.   “Thomas Farr is well regarded across the political spectrum and has received a well-qualified rating from the ABA, the gold standard for many members in the Senate Judiciary Committee,” said Senator Thom Tillis. “I applaud the Judiciary Committee for confirming Tom and urge the Senate …..

Read More

America’s Immigration System is broken

By Congressman Robert Pittenger America’s immigration system has never been so broken. Today, over 11 million illegal immigrants live in the United States.  Our porous border allows illegal gangs and drugs to enter our country, and also creates a serious national security problem.  America is a nation of laws, but our laws are too often ignored in the name of political correctness.  Our outdated immigration system hurts American workers. The United States is in desperate need of a full-scale immigration overhaul.  We can’t afford to kick the can down the road.  Unfortunately, it often seems Washington politicians would rather play the blame game than focus on fixing the problem. Yet …..

Read More

Opinion: Work together to end the destruction

Bladen County needs help! Parents have lost their children and our crime rate has been increasing. Why? Most would say drugs. Opioids, heroine, and their addicts are causing all the heartache. If the mother county was a true Mother, she would be weeping, pulling all her children in close and taking action to end the madness happening in her land. She would understand the opioids, the heroine and their addicts are symptoms, not the real root of the problems. BladenOnline.com has been reporting about the opioid crisis and the issues that come with it since 2016. Our intern, Katie Galyean, helped us first shine the light on the problems back …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Ever feel you are on ‘information overload’?   With normal news channels and papers, then add Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Messenger, Instagram, Texting, (and there are other sources), it’s just about more than I can comprehend.  I just read, and other than Happy Birthday on Facebook, I add little to the discussion.  I know, I could just delete them all or some, but I haven’t and not likely, just need something else to complain about. Beast Fest in Bladenboro is set for a week from this Friday and Saturday.  The ‘beast’ story was the talk of the area, at least in the ‘boro area in the winter of 1953-54.  I was 15 years old, …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Hope I live long enough to read Gen. Kelly’s (President Trump’s Chief of Staff) memoirs if he ever publishes them.  Must be interesting for a very disciplined individual to work with someone as ‘wide open’ as the President. Like him or hate him, gotta give President Trump his dues, the stock market is ‘moving up at a fast pace’, topped 23,000 yesterday, an all time high (closed slightly below that number). The business community appears to believe something good is going to happen, like an overhaul of our national tax structure. I still believe, if the budget is not cut, and I see no reason to believe it will be, …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Monday Night NFL results: Titans 36 – Colts 22. Hope you enjoy cooler weather?  First frost of the year coming soon, if this is a normal year. Bladenboro Beast Fest 2017 October 27 & 28.  The organizers have done another great job of putting together a fun-filled weekend.  Google ‘Boost the Boro’ for more info.  T shirts are on sale now, and during the festival, food, including collard sandwiches, rides, music, dancing, old cars and so much more.  It will be a fun-filled weekend. Jobs are available and more coming to Bladen County, thanks to Bladen County EDC, Bladen Agri Industrial and Bladen Committee of 100.  And, Bladen Community College is a …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Temps are expected to be much lower over the next week or so than they have been since spring.  Highs are expected to be in the upper 60s today and Tuesday, to low 70s on Wednesday and mid 70s on Thursday.  Prepare for mid 40s tonight to low 50s Thursday.  60% chance of rain today, 30% tonight and clear skies beginning tomorrow for several days. BladenOnline broke the record last week for page views with 223,133, shattering the previous record by 46,000. We also had 2 days crack the most page views for a day: 51,366 on Friday, Oct 13 and 40,808 on Tuesday, Oct 10.  There were 2 other days that had …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

This time of the year is the best time of the year for sports fans… Yesterday, in college football; NC State won Duke lost UNC lost and ECU received a whipping. Wake Forest had open date. In major league baseball playoff action, Astros over the Yankees and Dodgers downed the Cubs. Dale Earnhardt, Jr. won the pole position for the Talladega 500, his last.  He has announced he will retire at the end of this season. College basketball begins shortly and a new PGA year is underway. I know, there are other sports in various stages of play. Speaking of sports, East Bladen football team have ‘pulled a rabbit out of …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

I just remembered it was Saturday, not Sunday. Had a busy Friday evening, multi-tasking!  Watched Clemson football team lose to Syracuse, followed local high school football teams on Max Preps, listen to the Whiteville Wolfpack football broadcast and was constantly updated on the Yankees-Astro baseball playoff game. Best way to describe it all, I was worn out, slept like a baby.  Thought I had overslept, been hustlin’, showered, shaved, preparing to attend 7 AM prayer meeting….then realized it’s Saturday.  That’s good, another day to do little.  The life of a retired senior citizen. Have you received your Flu Shot? The big Orange Machine was de-railed last  night.  Syracuse (4-3) football team …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger announces $1.4 million FEMA grant

LUMBERTON – Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) today announced the Federal Emergency Management Agency will provide North Carolina with an additional $1,391,675.95 to assist with Hurricane Matthew recovery efforts. This grant will be provided to the N.C. Department of Transportation to reimburse for debris removal and infrastructure repair projects associated with Hurricane Matthew. NCDOT will be responsible for distributing the money to local governments. “We will knock on every door, and try every avenue, to ensure North Carolina receives full and appropriate funding for Hurricane Matthew recovery,” said Congressman Pittenger. “This week, I spoke with HUD Secretary Dr. Ben Carson about visiting North Carolina later this year to view the ongoing recovery needs. …..

Read More

You Decide: Should We Worry About Monopolies?

By Dr. Mike Walden One of my favorite games as a child was Monopoly. On a Saturday morning my mother would announce, “tonight is Monopoly night.” That evening the family would gather around the dining room table and play Monopoly for hours. An added bonus was the availability of snacks – something my mother usually prohibited after dinner. Monopoly is a board game with the objective of controlling properties on the game’s four streets.  Players landing on your property have to pay a fee. The best situation is owning all the properties on a street, thereby almost guaranteeing all players will have to pay the owner fees as they round …..

Read More

Rep. Rouzer to host Youth Leadership Conference next Wed

Washington, D.C. – Congressman David Rouzer will be hosting a youth leadership conference for high school juniors in the 7th Congressional District on Wednesday, October 18th, at the Sampson County Agri-Exposition Center, located at 414 Warsaw Rd., Clinton, N.C. The 2017 7th Congressional District Youth Leadership and Entrepreneurial Conference provides two juniors from each high school an opportunity to meet with entrepreneurial leaders, discuss ways to achieve entrepreneurial success and develop the necessary personal and professional skills to achieve goals. This conference is being conducted in coordination with North Carolina State University’s General Hugh Shelton Leadership Center as well as participation of the UNC Wilmington Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.  In addition to a …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Thursday night NFL results: Eagles 28 – Panthers 23. MLB  Cubs       9-9-0    (Cubs advance) Nationals 8-14-2  (Season over for Nats) American League Playoffs, Best of 7: Yankees vs Astros..Friday – FS1 National League Playoffs, Best of 7:  Cubs vs Dodgers…Saturday – TBS Bet advertisers are happy, 4 of the largest markets ‘duking it out’ for the opportunity to play in the 2017 World Series. Wish I could get as excited as I did as a youngster when it was the Yankees vs Brooklyn Dodgers, and later the Atlanta Braves vs any team.  Remember the Braves pitching trio of Glavine, Smoltz and Maddux? Check the line up of local activities this weekend beginning with …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger votes “no” on irresponsible disaster bill

WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) voted against the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Requirements Act. “America must help those in need, including the tragedy in Puerto Rico, but we must do so responsibly,” said Congressman Pittenger.  “When hardworking American families face unexpected expenses, they find offsets elsewhere in the family budget.  That’s real life, but not in Washington.  No effort has been made to trim expenses elsewhere to help pay for the necessary disaster relief.  This legislation also takes no account of hardworking taxpayers by bailing out the failing National Flood Insurance Program without instituting a single reform to address the illogical practice of repeatedly rebuilding the same properties over and …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Technology is a wonderful tool, ’til something goes wrong.  Most of my issues are self-inflicted. Shriners appeared to have sponsored another very successful fish fry fund-raiser.  Proceeds benefit Shriner’s hospitals where youngsters are treated free of charge.  Nearest one to Bladen County is Greenville, S.C.  Yes, local youngsters have been treated. Seems as I age, I am spending more time at funerals. Carolina Panthers have had a short week to prepare for the Philadelphia Eagles.  Kick-off is set for 8:25 PM today.  The game will be on CBS, NFLN or AMZN.  Both teams are 4-1. While on the topic of football, high school action continues.  Jayvee action at 6 PM today.  St. Pauls …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Municipal elections in Bladen County will be held Tuesday, November 7, 2017, less than 4 weeks away.  Make sure you are registered to vote, if in doubt call or stop by the Bladen County Board of Elections at 301 Cypress Street in Elizabethtown (behind the Post Office).  The office number is 910-862-6951. Far to often, a very small number of voters decide municipal elections.  Every vote counts and if you reside in one of Bladen’s municipalities, you are encouraged to VOTE.  You can’t vote it you are not registered. How about this weather?  Still feels to much like summer time.  Don’t know about you, but I am ready for an autumn …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

The Annual meeting of Four County EMC drew a record number of attendees last night, over 1,200 registered delegates.  Total attendance was estimated to be over 2,500. The meeting was held at Pender High School near Burgaw.  Delegates received good news, no rate increase in 2018, but that is likely to change in years to come.  The cost of dealing with coal-ash, to the satisfaction of government regulators, is expected to rise and the cost must be passed on to member-owners.  4 Directors were re-elected.  The Whisnants, a gospel singing group from Morganton, NC entertained and Victoria Huggins, Miss North Carolina, provided a great rendition of the national anthem.  The primary coverage area of the electric coop includes …..

Read More

Letter to the Editor: Vineyard Golf Course is Number 1

Dear Editor I, Bobby Gooden, am a member of the Southeastern Fellowship Golf Association which has members from several counties. We play different courses from the Fayetteville area to the beaches, also Florence and Cheraw counties in South Carolina. I will never forget what used to be Carolina Sands looked like, three years ago. There was nothing but bushes and dog fennels. It was like the land had been left untended for years. Mr. Bill Augustine saw an investment and purchased the course. He spent a lot of money by having all of the greens redone and sand traps filled with soft sand and installed a complete new irrigation system. …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Late night NFL score—KC Chiefs 42, Texans 34. Weather forecast indicates a possibility of rain daily through Thursday, with the best chance today and tomorrow.  High temps in the mid 80s and lows in the 70s, dropping to low 60s later in the week. Latest stats for BladenOnline indicate another solid week: Sept 24-30, 2017 Page views: 122,997 Visits: 20,225 Sept 24-30, 2016 Page views: 110,282 Visits: 20,771 Most Read Stories: 3,034: Crash sends wreck victims to hospital 2,823: Woman sentenced to probation in child drowning 2,233: Update – Crash on NC 87/11 claims life of mother, daughter 2,117: After wreck kills mother, daughter, intersection will be an all-way stop You …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

UNC and ECU football fans must be suffering from a lack of anything to get excited about.  To say the ‘Heels and Pirates are having a ‘bad year’ is an understatement. Locally owned businesses are an important ingredient of NC business and the latest edition of Business North Carolina lists the top 100 private companies in the state. Sampson-Bladen, birthed in Bladen, now headquartered in Clinton, is listed at number 20. Hadden Clark is the President of the company. They are a wholesaler, retailer and transporter of petroleum products. BladenOnline has added a new feature to the Sports Page. Check ‘Bladen County Athletes Playing in College’. It’s a John and Ray project. This …..

Read More

US one a few countries in the world that allows late term abortion

By Congressman Robert Pittenger Did you know the United States, China, and North Korea are among just seven nations which permit elective, late-term abortions? Our nation suffers an egregious offense to be listed with North Korea and China, two oppressive regimes that show no respect for human rights or human life. Recent advancements in science and medical research have provided us with an unprecedented window into the early stages of human life. When a mother is five months pregnant, her baby can yawn, stretch, and move its ten little fingers and ten little toes in the womb. Most important, we also now know that at five months, a baby is …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Attendees at the East Bladen-Fairmont must feel like they ‘got’ their $6’s worth last night.  It was Homecoming, coach Robby Priest was presented a jacket by Shriners to honor him for his selection as an Assistant Coach in the upcoming NC-SC Shriners football game in December, A King and Queen were crowned and the football game with Fairmont was decided in the final seconds of the game when Shy Pone ran back a Golden Tornado kick off 74 yards for a 42-38 win.  Fairmont threatened with seconds left on the clock, but failed to score.  John Clark has the complete details on our sports page. West Bladen lost to Whiteville, but …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

NFL results from Thursday night play: Patriots 19 – Tampa Bay Bucs 14. Local high school football action tonight, Whiteville at West Bladen and Fairmont at East Bladen.  Gametime for both 7 PM.  One of my favorite times of the week sharing coaching tips with anyone seated nearby in the stands, from someone with zero coaching experience. Sometimes I just listen to other uninformed fans.  When I need to share more or tap into a new information source, I stand along the fence.  I pay my $6 and am entitled to my perspective. Pre-game activities, I am told, will begin at 6:30 PM prior to the East Bladen game. Bryan Martin, E-town …..

Read More

Tillis, Cotton Introduce Legislation to Increase Veteran’s Access to Apprenticeships

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Tom Cotton (R-AK) introduced the Veteran Apprenticeship and Labor Opportunity Reform (VALOR) Act, legislation that would increase access to apprenticeship-training programs for military veterans. Specifically, it would streamline the certification process for non-federal apprenticeship programs based in more than one state. “Hiring veterans in the private sector should be as easy as possible, and Congress needs to do its part to increase opportunities for veterans in our workforce,” said Senator Tillis. “It is unnecessary to force businesses to register in every state of operation, and the VALOR Act is commonsense legislation that will reduce this burdensome requirement so apprenticeship programs will be more …..

Read More

Yellow ribbons for somebody’s baby 2017

By Jefferson Weaver The yellow ribbons are forgotten now, but the little boy they stood for never will be forgotten. Tristen “Buddy” Myers loved NASCAR, his dogs, big trucks, football and horses. He loved his Aunt Donna, too, since she and his Uncle John gave him all the love his mother, Raven, never could. Raven was a troubled woman, to say the least, and in the end, her poor choices ended in an ignominious death that ended an undignified life. Were it not for Buddy, I doubt Raven’s name would have been more than an occasional footnote on the crime pages. I ain’t going to judge the dead; besides, Buddy …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Another beautiful fall day is expected today.  High temp low to mid 80s with little or no wind.  Tonight, mostly clear with a low near 57 with a light east wind.  Perfect weather….. October yesteryear hold so many memories…. When I see peanut fields with the nuts turned up to the sun, in preparation for final harvesting before they are delivered to local peanut companies, my mind flashes back to stacks of peanuts in much smaller fields,  no large equipment, all harvested by family members and friends. Same for cotton, today its harvested by huge pieces of equipment, not so years ago.  Pickers (all ages) dragging a burlap bag, stuffing white cotton …..

Read More

BBQ was a Big hit for East Bladen Booster 

Contributed  The East Bladen Booster Club held their annual BBQ plate sale on Friday, September 29th at the Elizabethtown Presbyterian Church. The club handed out plates from 3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.  Over 400 tickets were sold and 350 plates  were distributed.  Smithfield Foods donated the BBQ which really helped with the fundraising efforts.  Josh Raynor, Mike Potter and Paul Johnson all donated cups to give out. Michael Wyatt, Lee Cain and Paul Shaw cooked the BBQ.  James Leach donated the beans and Ben Hill donated the tickets. Many parents and community members showed up to help serve and support the Booster Club.  Dr. Samuel Ray Cross said East Bladen Booster …..

Read More

Rep. Rouzer statement on the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act

Washington, D.C. — Congressman Rouzer released the statement below following passage of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which restricts abortions after the 20-week mark: “Advancements in medical technology prove that at 20 weeks old, the unborn can feel pain.  It is our moral obligation to fight for and protect the lives of those who cannot speak for themselves – the lives of those who are no different than our own.  I’m proud to stand with my colleagues in the House of Representatives to pass this vital bill to protect the most vulnerable among us.” Share:

Read More

Congressman Pittenger celebrates Charlotte pastor’s 40 years of ministry

WASHINGTON – On Tuesday, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) addressed the U.S. House of Representatives in celebration of Pastor Loran Livingston’s 40 years of ministry at Charlotte’s Central Church of God. “Mr. Speaker, I rise today in honor of Pastor Loran Livingston and his wife, Sandra, in recognition of their 40 years of ministry at Central Church of God in Charlotte, North Carolina. “God has used the Livingstons to grow and lead a church that truly impacts the Charlotte community and the world.  Each week, over 6,000 people gather together for a wonderful praise and worship experience, along with a dynamic, biblical message from Pastor Livingston.  Under their leadership, the congregation actively …..

Read More

Tillis at Equifax Hearing: Industry Needs to Read “Hacking for Dummies”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC), a member of the Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee, attended a committee hearing examining the Equifax cybersecurity breach and questioned former Equifax CEO Richard Smith about the recent breach affecting 145 million Americans, including an estimated 4,520,059 North Carolinians. If constituents feel their information has been compromised, they may contact Senator Tillis at www.tillis.senate.gov. During his questioning, Senator Tillis urged Mr. Smith to release the stock disposition history of the executives who sold their stock before the breach became public and ensure Equifax is doing everything they can to make the process moving forward is as easy as possible on the consumers …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

The Las Vegas shooting is such a tragedy, but so many inspiring stories of people helping others.  Many times, the best of mankind comes out in the worst of situations. Las Vegas police, county law enforcement, fireman, EMS, as well as volunteers were obviously well trained and appear to work well as a team, and have much support from state and fed officials.  That doesn’t just happen. Much work remains! Bladen County Commissioners will soon elect leaders for the coming year, it’s an annual function at the 1st meeting in December.  It’s time for wheelin’ and dealin’.  Despite differences, strange coalitions and bedfellows play big roles.  Whoever can get at least 5 votes will be …..

Read More

Tillis: We Need to Stop Talking About DACA and Solve the Problem

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, attended a committee hearing on the Administration’s decision to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and urged his colleagues to pass a solution for the DACA population. Last month, Senators Tillis, Lankford, and Hatch introduced the SUCCEED Act, a commonsense and merit-based solution for undocumented children to earn legal status if they work hard, follow the law, and pay their taxes. Tillis on pairing DACA solution with border security: “What we really need is White House leadership on exactly what the six month timeline that the President has placed on Congress to do our jobs looks like. …..

Read More

CONGRESSMAN PITTENGER: AMERICA JOINS OPPRESSIVE REGIMES IN ALLOWING ELECTIVE LATE-TERM ABORTIONS

WASHINGTON – This afternoon, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) urged Congress to support the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act (H.R. 36), which would ban late-term elective abortions after 20 weeks post-fertilization. “America has always been a beacon for human rights,” said Congressman Pittenger.  “Yet according to a 2014 report by the Charlotte Lozier Institute, the U.S. is among just seven countries that permit elective abortion past twenty weeks. “These countries include China and North Korea.  Our nation suffers an egregious offense to be listed with North Korea and China, two oppressive regimes that show no respect for human life or human rights, in allowing the killing of these precious babies as they endure these cruel abortions.  …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

The recent shooting in Las Vegas is so difficult to understand.  A 64 year-old millionaire, with nothing in his background that could explain his actions resulting in the death of 59 innocent country music fans and the injuring of another 500 plus.  What happened?  They walk among us! Locally, farmers are harvesting, what appears to be, one of the best peanut crops ever.  The gamble appears to have paid off this year.  The corn crop was equally good.  Blueberry farmers not so good, due to a late spring frost.  Bladen County’s economy is determined, to a great degree, by the farming community. When October arrives, I think of the Clarkton Tobacco Festival.  It ended …..

Read More

October 2, 2017 CONGRESSMAN PITTENGER: FEMA FREEZE LIFTED, $110 MILLION IN NORTH CAROLINA PROJECTS TO CONTINUE

WASHINGTON – In the immediate aftermath of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, $110 million in FEMA projects for North Carolina were frozen to ensure adequate emergency funding. Following passage of two separate funding bills supported by Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09), FEMA today lifted the freeze, allowing the North Carolina projects to continue. “FEMA protocol freezes long-term projects immediately after major disasters to ensure enough cash on hand to meet life-threatening needs,” explained Congressman Pittenger.  “This is why President Trump and I fought to pass Hurricane Harvey funding on September 6th and full-year funding for FEMA on September 14th.  There were some who attempted to score political points on those votes, but the responsible decision …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Cooler temps remind us it’s October, 2017, a wonderful time of the year! Special events are planned for weekends, check our Events page. Municipal elections are 5 weeks away, interesting races in some of our towns. Keep hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico in your thoughts and prayers.  Many from our area are actively involved in recovery efforts, especially NC Baptist.  Friends closer to home, some areas of Robeson County and the Fair Bluff area, are still dealing with the damage left by Hurricane Mathew. September 2017 was not a record breaking month, but rock-solid.  October 2016 is the best month in the history of BladenOnline featuring news related to a …..

Read More

Stumbling blocks to healthcare reform

by Tom Campbell, Producer and Moderator of NC SPIN It is evident that Congress is unable to pass meaningful and significant healthcare reform. There are two major obstacles in the way. They are health insurance and the government. Health insurance is a relatively recent phenomenon. While there were some early and isolated attempts to institute health insurance, the practice really gained momentum during World War II. Most able-bodied men and women were needed in military service, but in order to supply our burgeoning military the private sector was required to ramp up production to previously unimagined and historic levels. At its peak, for example, a B24 bomber, with some 1.5 …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

It is a great time of the year for sports fans! MLB play-offs begin Wednesday with Wild Card games.  Twins vs Yankees in the American League and Rockies vs Diamondbacks in the National League. Other AL teams: Cleveland Indians, Houston Astros and Boston Red Sox. National League participants: LA Dodgers, Washington Nationals and Chicago Cubs. Martin Truex, Jr. is on the pole today at the Dover International Speedway as the NASCAR season begins to ‘wind down’. NFL action today, and in college football action last night, the 2 top rated teams posted victories:  Alabama 66 (5-0) over Ole Miss (2-2) 3; and Clemson (5-0) outscored Virginia Tech (4-1) 31-17. Local farmers may …..

Read More

You Decide: Should North Carolina Bid For Amazon?

By Dr. Mike Walden When I joined the faculty of North Carolina State University four decades ago, buying books – an occupational necessity for academics – was tedious and time-consuming. I’d first contact the NCSU Bookstore, who then ordered the book from the publisher. When it arrived – usually weeks later – I would then spend at least 45 minutes walking to and from the bookstore to retrieve the book. Today, I have 1-click ordering on Amazon, and my books arrive at my front door often mere days later. No wonder my spending on books has skyrocketed! Amazon was initially a big boon to book buying, then jewelry, followed by items …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

The current Three Rivers high school football conference has only 4 of 10 teams with overall winning records and appears to be a 3 team race for the top spot, just after the halfway point of the season.  South Columbus is 6-0 overall and 4-0 in conference, East Bladen and Whiteville are 5-1 overall and 3-1 in conference play.  St. Pauls is also 3-1 in in conference play but 3-3 overall. South Columbus defeated East Bladen earlier in the season by a single point on a missed point after, East Bladen handed Whiteville their only loss of the season.  The regular season championship likely determined when the Whiteville Wolfpack plays the …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Thursday night NFL action, Green Bay Packers 35 – Chicago Bears 14.  Before the game, players on both teams locked arms as a symbol of unity, game was interrupted for 47 minutes due to  lightning that was spotted just outside the stadium. Tonight, high school football.  West Columbus plays at East Bladen, West Bladen travels to South Robeson.  Gametime for both games, 7 PM. We flip our calendar tomorrow (Saturday).  Looking forward to October! Average high temp for October is 75 degrees, compared with 83 for September and average low in October is 50 and 62 for September. Not unusual for first fall frost near the end of October or early …..

Read More

Analysis: The SUCCEED Act Will Grow The American Economy, Create Jobs, And Lower Deficits

WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, the Niskanen Center released an economic analysis of the SUCCEED Act, introduced by Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC), James Lankford (R-OK) and Orrin Hatch (R-UT). The SUCCEED Act a merit-based, long-term solution for undocumented children to earn legal status if they work hard, follow the law, and pay their taxes. The analysis from the Niskanen Center clearly demonstrates the SUCCEED Act is also great for the health of the American economy. Highlights of the analysis: *The SUCCEED Act would create 117,000 new jobs. That is more jobs than the number of Americans employed by companies like Apple, Google, Microsoft, Coca-Cola, and Facebook. *The SUCCEED Act would increase GDP …..

Read More

Civitas President Files Petition Challenging Legality of DEQ and Chemours Settlement

Contributed On Monday, September 27, Civitas Institute President Francis X. De Luca filed a petition with the North Carolina Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) questioning the legality of the recently signed consent decree between the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and the Chemours chemical company. State and federal law requires the public be notified of any settlement decrees of Clean Water Act enforcement actions. The settlement was signed on September 8th by Bladen County Judge Douglas Sasser after discussion/ negotiations between the DEQ and Chemours. Civitas President Francis De Luca said, “The decree required Chemours to do things which were already required of them under existing law and appears to …..

Read More

CONGRESSMAN PITTENGER ON RETURN TO U.S. HOUSE OF MAJORITY WHIP STEVE SCALISE

WASHINGTON – Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09), who serves on the House Whip Team, had these remarks following the return of Majority Whip Steve Scalise to the House floor: “What a thrilling moment this morning in the House Chamber when my friend Steve Scalise entered the room!  Amid resounding cheers and applause from both sides of the aisle, Steve conveyed his gratitude to God for the miracles and answers to prayer that saved his life.  He also publicly thanked the U.S. Capitol Police officers who, despite being wounded, persevered until taking down the assailant, saving many lives.  Thank God for a real patriot in Steve Scalise.” Share:

Read More

REP. ROUZER STATEMENT ON TAX REFORM FRAMEWORK

Washington, D.C. — Congressman Rouzer released the following statement on the Republicans’ framework to fix our nation’s broken tax code: “This week, the House, the Senate, and the Trump Administration released a tax reform framework to bring back jobs and money from overseas and create real prosperity for all Americans.  This is a tax reform plan focused on simplicity and growth that will lead to significant investments and generate better paying jobs, while also enabling every individual and family to keep more of what they earn.  For southeastern North Carolina, this is a first step to enacting into law a tax code that would benefit every individual and family —  including …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Good news, bad news….Think we have to many news sources? Headlines over the past few hours! Resignation of Kobie Baker, Alabama’s director of basketball operations, tied to FBI investigation. Auburn basketball could be in deep trouble. Woman bitten several times by copperhead snake at Longhorn Steakhouse. Royal Caribbean sends cruise ship to help Puerto Rico. President Trump says he has the votes on health care bill! Sen. Bill Cassidy (R), “We don’t have the votes!” O.J. Simpson could be released on parole as soon as Monday… Rest in Peace Mrs. Brenda Haire Gooden. Deshaun Watson donated his first NFL game check to (Houston) stadium employees who were hit hard by …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger: More jobs, lower taxes, simple and fair

WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) attended a briefing with Speaker Paul Ryan and House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady on the unified Republican framework for reforming our tax code for the first time since 1986. “This is really an extraordinary jobs bill.  This is going to spark major economic growth.  Our plan allows hardworking Americans to keep more of their own money, brings our corporate tax rate in line with the rest of the industrialized world, and finally provides fairness for the small business owners who create the majority of new jobs,” said Congressman Pittenger. “America’s tax code hasn’t been updated since ‘Crocodile Dundee’ was in theaters.  We can’t continue …..

Read More

Tillis Statement on Tax Reform Framework

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) issued the following statement on the Senate Finance Committee and the House Ways and Means Committee’s release of their tax reform framework: “The initial tax reform framework is a great first step to overhauling our broken and antiquated tax code and allowing the American economy to unleash its full potential. I’m encouraged that the framework follows similar principles that we implemented in North Carolina: simplifying the tax code, lowering rates, and broadening the base. North Carolina’s tax reform has been incredibly successful, leading to more jobs, more revenue, and more growth. This success can be replicated at the national level, and it’s now …..

Read More

Tillis: We Need To Pass Tax Reform That Helps Working Families And Creates Jobs

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) spoke on the Senate Floor about the need to pass tax reform for the American people.   “Along the way we are going to have our challenges because everybody in Washington is for tax reform and tax relief. They’ll come into your office and tell you, ‘let’s get it going except for that one righteous exemption that I may need.’ We need to have the courage to pass tax reform that helps working families, creates jobs, and silences the people that want to take this exemption or that exemption away so we do what’s right for the people that need a job. It’s …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

September is slipping away, October is always a busy time in Bladen: 2nd – United Way Day of Caring, Cape Fear Farmers Market 4th & 5th – 12th Annual Ag’em Up day at the Bladen County Park , US 701 S 7th – Bladen County Youth Focus Oktoberfest Parade in Elizabethtown 14th – NC Grape Festival, Lu Mil Vineyard, Dublin 19th – Seafood & Sunset, The Venue at Regal Resort, White Lake 27th & 28th – Best Fest, Bladenboro. Middle and high school sports activities, listed in our sports section. So much to do and no doubt our list is incomplete. Bladen continues to be a busy place.  Visit our BladenOnline Events …..

Read More

The double standard is alive and well-paid

By Jefferson Weaver I really couldn’t care less about professional football. I admire anyone whose physical prowess is such that they can, at least for a few years, make a living off of it. I find it ridiculous that guys playing a game have a starting salary higher than the budgets of some small towns, but I’m also a fan of the free market. If people are willing to pay someone that much money to play a game, then by all means, they should have the right to do so. I won’t be attending a game, or even watching more than a few minutes of one on television. Nor will …..

Read More

CONGRESSMAN PITTENGER TESTIMONY: LUMBEE RECOGNITION ‘SIMPLY THE RIGHT THING TO DO’

WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) testified before the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Indian, Insular, and Alaska Native Affairs in support of his Lumbee Recognition Act (H.R. 3650).    Click here for full video of Congressman Pittenger’s testimony in support of full federal recognition for the Lumbee Tribe.   “First and foremost, this is an issue of fairness.  In heritage, culture, and many times in their relationship with state and federal government, the Lumbee are every bit as Indian as any other tribe in this country.   “This is not about gaming.  My bill specifically prohibits the Lumbee Tribe from conducting gaming activities.  Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee, passing this …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

I recently added POLITICO Playbook to my daily reading.  I added after the source was referred to almost daily by one or more national news sources.  It’s free and supposedly gives a little more background info related to the daily turmoil, especially in DC, and around the world, as if more was needed.  Not sure if it’s right or left leaning….I trust little of what I read or hear, just added another source to further confuse. Think I am most concerned about the North Korean situation.  Two interesting leaders, duking it out on the world stage.  One slip by either could be a ‘knock-out punch’ that would be devastating for millions of …..

Read More

Tillis, Lankford & Hatch Hold Press Conference To Introduce The SUCCEED Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC), James Lankford (R-OK), and Orrin Hatch (R-UT) held a press conference to introduce the Solution for Undocumented Children through Careers, Employment, Education, and Defending our nation (SUCCEED) Act, a solution to address the legal uncertainty facing undocumented children and young undocumented adults who were brought to the United States as children.     The SUCCEED Act provides a fair but rigorous track for undocumented children to qualify for conditional permanent resident (CPR) status, requiring them to follow one or a combination of three specific pathways to earn and maintain their status once they become adults: being gainfully employed, pursing postsecondary or vocational education, or serving …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger honors Union Co. effort to help hurricane victims

WASHINGTON – Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) today addressed the U.S. House of Representatives in honor of the Moser Group of Indian Trail and Wingate University, which are partnering to collect and transport relief supplies for hurricane victims. “Madam Speaker, I rise today in honor of The Moser Group and Wingate University for their extraordinary organizational and grassroots efforts to help victims of Hurricanes Irma in Florida and Harvey in Texas. “This week, these two organizations will load two 18-wheeler trucks to deliver supplies directly to the affected areas.  Commitment to charity and compassion for victims of natural disasters is truly what makes America great. “In North Carolina, we know all too …..

Read More

Tillis, Lankford & Hatch Introduce The SUCCEED Act: Merit-Based Legislation To Address The Legal Uncertainty of Undocumented Children

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC), James Lankford (R-OK), and Orrin Hatch (R-UT) introduced the Solution for Undocumented Children through Careers Employment Education and Defending our nation (SUCCEED) Act, a solution to address the legal uncertainty facing undocumented children and young undocumented adults who were brought to the United States as children. The SUCCEED Act provides a fair but rigorous track for undocumented children to qualify for conditional permanent resident (CPR) status, requiring them to follow one or a combination of three specific pathways to earn and maintain their status once they become adults: being gainfully employed, pursing postsecondary or vocational education, or serving in the U.S. military. …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Late night NFL score….Redskins 27 – Raiders 10.  Tonight Cowboys vs Cardinals at 8:30 PM. Can you believe?  This is the first day of the last week of September 2017… Daily average high and low temps for September is 83 and 62…..for October, 75 and 50. Municipal elections are just 6 weeks from tomorrow (Tuesday).  Not much visible activity in the county.  Filing for county, state and national elections begins in early 2018. Wish we could all be more civil in matters related to the ‘political state’ of our nation.  Not sure I have ever witnessed a division as great as the current situation at the state and national level.  I …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

College football results: NC State 27, Florida State 21 Duke 27, UNC 17 Wake Forest 20, App.State 19 Alabama 59, Vanderbilt 0 Clemson 34, Boston College 7 South Carolina 17, Louisiana Tech 19 Winston Salem University lost to Virginia State 33-27, in overtime and dropped to 2-2 overall  and 0-1 in conference play.  Former East Bladen star Farrell Murchison led the Rams in rushing with 85 yards. ECU (0-3) plays at Connecticut (1-1).  Game on ESPNU at 12 noon. And there is a full slate of NFL action today as well. Someone will take home a nice ‘chunk of cash’ after today’s final round of the PGA Tour Championship.  Paul Casey …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

I have learned a new word…dotard…Kim Jong-un of North Korea’s description of President Trump after our Presidents UN speech.  Webster, as in the dictionary, defines dotard as …a person in his dotage; foolish and doddering old person.  I was called much worse as a local elected official 40 years ago. I recall a visit to Sen. Jesse Helms office in DC where he had one wall covered with cartoonist renderings of mostly uncomplimentary cartoons of him.  He seemed to enjoy, just a part of public life. Saw a news article relating to another new record of US debt, so I looked it up, earlier today (Saturday, September 23, 2017)  We, …..

Read More

Who receives Affordable Care Act funds?

By Congressman Robert Pittenger Did you know four liberal states currently receive 37 percent of all Obamacare funds? That inequity is one reason certain special interest groups and politicians are so anxious to maintain the status quo. Wouldn’t it be better if your federal tax dollars were shared more equitably, so that communities could develop healthcare solutions that meet their needs? And at the same time, do away with Washington’s top-down, one-size-fits-all approach to healthcare? Those are the conservative, common sense principles behind the “Graham-Cassidy” healthcare legislation, which the Senate is on the verge of passing to repeal and replace Obamacare. This is a conservative, market-based solution to repairing America’s …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger: N.C. gains $7B under Graham-Cassidy

WASHINGTON – North Carolina stands to gain $7 billion in additional federal healthcare funding under the Graham-Cassidy healthcare reform legislation, with up to $1.4 billion of that additional funding dedicated to Medicaid. The estimates are based on the Graham-Cassidy funding model, which awards block grants based on the percentage of population within a certain range of the federal poverty line.  An earlier press release inadvertently referenced the wrong number. “Obamacare attempts to force individuals into a one-size-fits-all model.  As a result, rates in North Carolina have skyrocketed 176 percent since 2013,” said Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09).  “Graham-Cassidy equitably distributes over $1 trillion to the states and gives them flexibility to address local healthcare …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

High School football action slated for tonight.  East Columbus at West Bladen and East Bladen travels to Red Springs.  Kick-off for both games is 7 PM. East Bladen boys soccer team 7-1 overall and 3-0 in conference play and the Knights ladies tennis team is off to a 9-0 start. Check current sports news on our Sports page.  John Clark covers local sports like no other. NFL’s Thursday night game results…LA Rams 41, 49ers 39. While on the topic of sports, the 2017 PGA Tour Championship is being played in Atlanta.  30 players aiming for a ‘lions share’ of the $8,750,000 total prize money.  Kyle Stanly leads at 6 under after …..

Read More

Rep. Brenden Jones Appointed as Vice-Chair of the House Select Committee on Disaster Relief

Raleigh, NC – Representative Brenden Jones (R-Columbus, Robeson, Bladen) was recently appointed as Vice-Chair of the House Select Committee on Disaster Relief. “I am pleased to have been appointed by the Speaker of the NC House of Representatives, Tim Moore, to serve as Vice-Chair  on the House Select Committee on Disaster Relief,” stated Rep. Jones.  It is an honor to be chosen for this position as a Freshman Member and I look forward to working with my colleagues on a topic of such vital importance.” The Committee may study the following: Hurricane Recovery and Flood Preparedness 1.  May receive updates and provide oversight regarding implementation of the Disaster Recovery Acts …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

  My memory is slipping, but do not recall as much destruction caused by natural disasters, at least in recent years, and more storms still active.  Thankfully, Maria appears to be tracking off shore, away from the coast of the US. Our friends in Robeson County and Fair Bluff, still attempting to return to normal following Hurricane Mathew.  Governor Roy Cooper is scheduled to visit Fair Bluff today. FEMA funds for our area have been placed on a temporary hold, as Fed officials deal with Texas, Louisiana, Florida and Puerto Rico recovery efforts. Recently, President Trump referred to Kim Jong-un as “rocket man”, now North Korea’s foreign minister has referred to those comments as …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger: Free American Pastor Held in China

WASHINGTON – For the past three years, Greensboro, N.C. pastor Reverend John Cao has worked to build 16 schools for impoverished ethnic minorities near the China-Myanmar border. This year, Rev. Cao began to face pressure from the Chinese government, including travel restrictions and the forced closure of some schools.  He was arrested for “illegal border crossing” on March 5th, despite previously having traveled between Myanmar and China without trouble as part of his humanitarian work. This week, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) and Congressman Chris Smith (NJ-04), who serve together on the Congressional-Executive Commission on China, wrote Secretary of State Rex Tillerson to ask that the State Department prioritize Rev. Cao’s case.  …..

Read More

Consumer Advocates Urge Congress To Cap Payday Loan Rates

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Center for Responsible Lending (CRL), Americans for Financial Reform (AFR), and nearly 40 national and state organizations sent a letter urging Members of Congress to pass the Protecting Consumers from Unreasonable Credit Rates Act, a bicameral bill introduced by U.S. Senators Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) and Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and U.S. Representatives Matt Cartwright (D-Penn.) and Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.). The bill would protect consumers from predatory lenders by capping payday and car-title loans at no more than 36% annual percentage rate (APR). “Currently, payday and car title lenders charge triple digit annual interest rates, often 300 percent or higher. A large body of research has demonstrated that these …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

So much news, ESPN and others provide sports round-the-clock, Meteorologist cover the weather from infancy of a storm to destruction.  News is covered instantly and often…..All good, helpful….but, remember grading and tying tobacco in a hot pack house, listening to major league baseball on an AM station….poppin and cracklin’.  Growing up in Bladenboro, WTSB in Lumberton provided our entertainment.  I recall a time when 3rd baseman Eddie Mathews hit 3 or 4 homeruns in a game for the Milwaukee Braves, in the early 60s  The Braves were my #2 favorite team, second only to the Yankees. Remember when they were the Boston Braves?  Now, the Atlanta Braves. Sports has been a big part of …..

Read More

Tillis Secures Provisions in NDAA To Fund Upgrades To NC Military Installations And Improve Quality of Life For Servicemembers and Military Families

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) applauded the Senate passage of the FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which included several key provisions introduced by Senator Tillis that will make critical improvements to Camp Lejeune and Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, provide an across the board pay raise for servicemembers, and implement important reforms that will make life easier for military families. Senator Tillis chairs the Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel , which has oversight over half of the Pentagon’s budget. On a bipartisan basis, Senator Tillis and his subcommittee colleagues pushed through an across the board 2.1% pay raise for our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines. The subcommittee also …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger’s Lumbee Recognition Act To Be Subject of Key Committee Hearing

WASHINGTON – The House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Indian, Insular, and Alaska Native Affairs today announced a legislative hearing on Congressman Robert Pittenger’s Lumbee Recognition Act (H.R. 3650), scheduled for Tuesday, September 26th. “This is the next step in bringing Lumbee recognition up for a vote,” said Congressman Pittenger (NC-09).  “The Lumbee Tribe has sought full federal recognition since 1888.  We are working closely with the Lumbee Tribe and other leaders to ensure a strong showing next Tuesday.” Congress recognized the Lumbee Tribe in 1956, but unfairly prevented the tribe from receiving federal benefits.  As a result, the Lumbee Tribe is not eligible for vital economic development programs through the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and …..

Read More

Tillis Joins Bipartisan Effort to Extend Critical Funding for Community Health Centers

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) joined a bipartisan letter led by Senators Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) to call for immediate action to extend critical funding for community health centers before funding runs out at the end of this month. In a letter to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Chairman and Ranking Member, Tillis, Stabenow, Blunt, and 58 other Senators expressed their strong support for community health centers, which provide access to cost-effective primary and preventive care for families across the country. “Without extension of the CHCF, community health centers will lose seventy percent of their funding,” wrote the Senators. “This will result …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Have discovered that renewing NC drivers license is less painless when done online, and I am still needed around the house as long as we use a hand-operated can opener and I can reach items on the top level of our kitchen cabinets. Remember when retail outlets respected Sunday as a day of rest?  Even fuel for our vehicles was difficult to find.  Times have changed, Sunday is pretty much like any other day.  A recent Sunday school lesson reminded us of God’s law…..Exodus 31 says, “Observe the Sabbath, because it is holy to you.  Anyone who desecrates it must be put to death…..” Kinda looking forward to 50 degree mornings and high temps …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

It is a wonderful time of the year!!!! Boiled peanuts are all around and very good.  Should soon begin to see huge trailers, loaded with peanuts headed to market.  Observers indicate a great crop this year. Falcons held on in late NFL action last night to win 34-23.  Earlier in the day, Carolina Panthers  defeated the Buffalo Bills 9-3 in a defensive struggle.  A win is a win, but. Another rock-solid week for BladenOnline for week of September 10-16, 2017. Page Views: 110,231 Visits: 19,970 A week earlier: Page Views: 106,445 Visits: 18,675 BladenOnline is also available on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Most Read Stories: 4,647: Man exits vehicle during road …..

Read More

You Decide: What Are The Good And Bad In Today’s Economy?

By Dr. Mike Walden Although my late mother never finished high school, she still was a wise person. One of her favorite sayings was, there’s two sides to every story. Of course when I tried to use this logic after I disobeyed one of her rules, she would reply – there are exceptions! I’m frequently reminded of my Mom’s advice when I give presentations about the economy around the state. Attendees often challenge me on whether the economy is doing well or not. I look forward to these discussions because they allow me to elaborate and give more “sides” – good and bad – to the economic story. In this …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Final NFL score Thursday evening: Houston Texans 13 – Cincinnati Bengals 9.  Unless there is much improvement by both teams, Texan and Bengals fans need not worry about a trip to the Super Bowl this season. Dublin Peanut Festival tomorrow (Saturday), all day long at Dublin School. Mark your calendar for Saturday, October 14.  NC Grape Festival at Lu Mil Vineyard….Grape Stompin’, Blackwater Rhythm @ Blues Band.  U Pick Grapes NOW.  Check their website for details. High School football tonight.  Both Bladen County teams in conference action.  South Columbus at East Bladen and West Bladen at Red Springs.  Gametime for both 7 PM. Discharge by The Chemours Company into the Cape Fear River is …..

Read More

Tillis & Warren Introduce Bipartisan Legislation Requiring DOD Report on Cyber Security Risks to National Electric Grid

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Yesterday, U.S. Senators Thom Tillis (R-NC) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) introduced the Securing the Electric Grid to Protect Military Readiness Act of 2017, legislation that would require the Department of Defense (DOD) to issue a one-time report on significant security risks to the national electric grid and the effects of those risks on military readiness. “As the global threats evolve and our adversaries continue to develop new ways to attempt to disrupt our military operations, it is important to recognize our key vulnerabilities,” said Senator Tillis. “This bipartisan legislation will ensure defense leaders can identify and understand any vulnerabilities to our electrical infrastructure so we can protect DoD assets and installations from …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Opinion: Thoughts While Shaving

Dublin Peanut Festival is this weekend. Good food and fun and the proceeds assist worthy causes in the area. Begins Saturday with a 10 a.m. parade. The Bladen County Educational Foundation, a non-profit corporation organized and existing to provide financial help for the public schools and educators of Bladen County, will hold its annual meeting on Tuesday, September 19, at 5:30 p.m. in the public meeting room of the Bladen County Board of Education on US Highway 701, south of Elizabethtown. Should last about an hour and interested individuals are invited to attend. New officers are expected to be elected and plans for upcoming fund-raising efforts will be discussed. Would you pay $1,000 or more …..

Read More

Tillis Applauds Final Decision To Base Air Force’s Newest Tanker Squadron in NC

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) applauded the United States Air Force’s decision to select Seymour Johnson Air Force Base as the Main Operating Base for a KC-46A Pegasus Air Refueling Squadron. The announcement was made by the Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson. “The addition of 12 KC-46A tanker aircraft at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base is a testament that North Carolina continues to be the tip of the spear for the U.S. military,”said Senator Tillis. “This decision is the result of the work being done by the men and women at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base and the people of Goldsboro and Wayne County.” In 2015, the …..

Read More

President Trump Blocks Questionable Chinese Acquisition of U.S. Tech Firm

Congressman Pittenger led successful bipartisan effort to highlight national security concerns of proposed transaction WASHINGTON – Today, President Donald Trump used his authority to block the proposed Chinese takeover of Lattice Semiconductor, the third-largest American producer of critical technology for U.S. military applications. In December, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) launched a bipartisan effort urging the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) to block the transaction.  A coalition of 21 Members of Congress supported Congressman Pittenger’s effort. Today’s decision is based on a recommendation by CFIUS. “We are not opposed to all Chinese investments, but we must be aware of the Chinese government’s strategic, systematic effort to infiltrate key …..

Read More

Tillis Co-Introduces Bipartisan Legislation To Expand Research Into Medical Value Of Marijuana

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) joined Senators Brian Schatz (D-HI), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Chris Coons (D-DE) to introduce the Marijuana Effective Drug Studies (MEDS) Act of 2017, bipartisan legislation that would make it easier for researchers to study the medical effectiveness and safety of marijuana. “When it comes to our nation’s efforts to cure diseases and improve the quality of life for people suffering from ailments, burdensome government regulations shouldn’t be an impediment to legitimate and responsible medical research,” said Senator Tillis. “The MEDS Act is a commonsense, bipartisan effort to remove unnecessary barriers that will give scientists the ability to study the biochemical processes, impact, …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

We missed another couple of hurricanes, Irma and Jose. At the Hester household, had a total of 2.3 inches of rainfall from the remnants of Irma. Politico is reporting that House Speaker Paul Ryan is meeting today with top Democrats to discuss legislative options to protect Dreamers. Dreamers, debt ceiling, healthcare, budget, overhaul of tax system, busy time inside the DC beltline.  Read some place where members of Congress were to arrive late Tuesday to begin work and were leaving Thursday.  My kind of work week, pay not bad and pretty good benefits.  Wonder who sets their work schedule? Hardly a sound locally about municipal elections!  Less than 8 weeks ’til election day …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Bladen County Public Schools will be operating on a 2 hour delay today, based on info received from Valerie Newton, Public Relations and Information Officer.  Reason for the delay is weather, caused by remnants of Hurricane Irma. Emereau, Bladen County local charter school will be closed today, no info on other educational institutions in the area. Elizabethtown-White Lake Chamber meeting at 12 noon today at Cape Fear Farmers Market.  Dickie Walters and Chris Heuer of Star Communications will be the sharing many opportunities and services of the company they represent.  All are welcome. Dublin Peanut Festival is set for Saturday at Dublin School Beast of Bladenboro Festival upcoming later part …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger’s Statement on the 16th anniversary of the 9-11 Terrorist Attacks

CHARLOTTE – Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) released this statement as he reflects on the 16th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks: “As we remember 9/11, America faces more perilous challenges than ever before.  Radical Islamic jihadists, North Korea, China, Russia, and Iran have all been emboldened by years of feckless and feeble foreign policy.  On 9/11, brave American citizens and first-responders stood up to radical Islamic terrorists and proclaimed through their actions that America stands for freedom and liberty.  Let us never forget the lives lost, or the bravery of the first-responders.  Let us also remember their spirit as we face increasing challenges in 2017.” Congressman Pittenger serves as Vice …..

Read More

Things have changed

By Jefferson Weaver A month after Sept. 11, 2001, a young man named Dillon sat in my lap, “helping” me with a catalog of antique gun parts whilst his mom Candy and Miss Rhonda worked on a sewing project. We had a very serious discussion about this musket or that rifle, the type of discussion that one can only have with a two-year-old. He decided he wanted to have one particular model of flintlock “when I join the Army.” Pretty soon, Dillon will be issued a much newer version of a military rifle than any flintlock; he didn’t join the Army, either, but is, instead, undergoing training to become a …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Bladen County Schools will be closed for students today (Monday, September 11) due to Hurricane Irma and it will be an optional workday for teachers with an 8 AM start time. After watching the weather channel off and on over the past few hours I am convinced that one requirement for storm assignment, need to have a few extra pounds to maintain an upright position in strong winds and rainfall. Continue to pray for Floridians.  Many still in the state and many more up and down I-95 (including NC) and other major roadways having left home seeking ‘safe haven’, ’til the storm that has caused havoc across the state, passes by.  Reminds me …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

  Pray for residents of Florida.  Early Sunday, Hurricane Irma was just off the coast of south Florida, moving forward at about 8 mph. We could have some rain and wind Monday, but nothing to compare with what we were expecting from the storm a few days ago. We appear to be on the fringe area of Hurricane Irma.  The threat to our area, in addition to some rain and wind, is possible tornado warnings and a slight possibility of power outages, as the storm moves northwest, hopefully missing North Carolina.  Eventually Irma should be down graded to a tropical storm in the Tennessee/Kentucky area by midweek. The Cry Out America event scheduled for …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

Dedication for the new Bladen County Law Enforcement Center and Detention Center on Friday was a huge success, well attended. The 25th Dublin Peanut Festival is just a week away.  One of Bladen’s most popular events annually.  Google their website for the line-up that begins with a parade, followed by BBQ plate lunch and continues throughout the day.  Volunteers have been working hard for weeks and at the end of the festival, proceeds support worthy efforts in our area. Three Rivers 1A-2A conference is more like yesteryear with teams from Bladen, Robeson and Columbus counties.  East and West Bladen compete in the 2A division. Last night, West suffered their 1st …..

Read More

Our laws should be applied fairly and equally to everyone

By Congressman Robert Pittenger America is a nation of laws, and we function best when those laws are applied fairly and equally. This week, President Trump announced an orderly wind-down of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, commonly known as DACA.  This Obama-era program grants temporary legal status to illegal immigrants brought into the United States as children, including work permits, other federal benefits, and Social Security. This was difficult, but President Trump made the correct decision. In 2012, President Obama established DACA via what amounted to royal decree, using an Executive Order without input or consent from Congress.  Yet the Constitution is clear:  Congress, the direct elected Representatives …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger urges sanctions on Qatar-based terrorism financiers

WASHINGTON – Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09), Vice Chairman of the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Terrorism and Illicit Finance, today urged Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin to explore new sanctions against Qatar-based terrorism financiers. Congressman Pittenger’s letter to Secretary Mnuchin was co-signed by Congressmen Robert Aderholt (AL-04), David Trott (MI-11), and French Hill (AR-02). “As you know, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Bahrain placed strong sanctions on close to 90 entities in Qatar for their roles in providing material support to fund terror.  Of the sanctioned parties, the UAE determined that over 40 individuals and organizations financed, aided, or provided other material support to Al-Qaeda and its associated …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving for September 8

Powerful storm Irma is on a path that could hit the Miami, Dade County area of Florida this weekend with 20 inches or more of rain, high winds and storm surge that could cover the area. Current info indicates our area could be spared the worse, Irma could take a more western direction, even as far west at Tennessee. However, the storm’s direction can change. Stay tuned. A brief reminder of the Bladen County Law Enforcement Center Dedication and Open House at 10 AM today at the site on Smith Circle, across the street from the Ag Center. Everyone is invited. NFL season underway. Last night the Kansas City Chiefs …..

Read More

Hurricane Irma Update

From US Congressman David Rouzer As our state prepares for Hurricane Irma, I wanted to provide you with an update as well as various resources and hurricane preparedness tips. On Thursday, Governor Roy Cooper issued a state of emergency for all 100 North Carolina counties.  While there is still a lot we do not know about the storm, we do know that our state can expect almost certain impacts from the hurricane early next week.  Meteorologists are predicting that portions of our state could experience severe wind and rain as early as Monday.  Below is a graphic of what we do and do now know as of Thursday, September 7. The …..

Read More

Tillis Helps Secure Partial Swain County Reimbursement From Department of the Interior

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) applauded Secretary Ryan Zinke and the Department of the Interior for releasing $4 million that was appropriated to Swain County in 2012 but never transferred. Senator Tillis has worked alongside Secretary Zinke and his staff to lead the effort in securing the $4 million that was appropriated to them as part of a $52 million settlement owed to Swain County by the federal government and has submitted appropriations requests for FY 17 and FY 18 to secure the remaining $35.2 million. “I want to thank Secretary Zinke and his team for their leadership to ensure Swain County receives their long-overdue payment that is …..

Read More

Congressman Pittenger and Chairman Carter discuss Hurricane Matthew funding on House floor

WASHINGTON – During Wednesday’s U.S. House debate on appropriations, Congressman Robert Pittenger (NC-09) requested a colloquy to publicly discuss North Carolina’s ongoing Hurricane Matthew recovery needs with Chairman John Carter (TX-31) of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee. Congressman Pittenger:  “Our state suffered $4.8 billion in damage, including 98,000 homes and 19,000 businesses.  82,000 people have made application to FEMA.  Mr. Chairman, although the package passed by the House this morning was for Hurricane Harvey relief, can you please explain how it will also be helpful for Hurricane Matthew victims?  I would like to be able to assure my constituents that Congress will continue to support their long-term disaster relief needs.” Chairman Carter:  “Last week, FEMA …..

Read More

Thoughts While Shaving

Thoughts While Shaving

  We should enjoy beautiful weather for the next 72 hours or so prior to any effects from Hurricane Irma.  One forecast indicates decreasing clouds, less humid today with high temps near 80, in fact, same high for the next couple of days.  Friday, sunny and pleasant.  Saturday, pleasant with plenty of sun.  Sunday, cloudy with high temps in mid 70s.  After that, who knows.  Be prepared for Irma or remnants of the storm. And, Hurricanes Jose and Katia are beginning to gain strength.  Stay in touch. Are you tired of our honorable leaders playing politics?  When they take their oath to uphold the constitution of the state or nation, I wonder if …..

Read More