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Thoughts While ShavingA new budget was approved last night (6-3) by the Bladen County Board of Commissioners. The new tax rate is 82 cents or an increase of over 13 percent.  The vast majority of the increase will be used to pay the debt service for a new detention center and sheriff’s office.

Other increases are for updates for the EMS service and additional cost for operation of jail.   Hopefully, Bladen County will be able to generate some new revenues by leasing jail space for a while….However, based on the history of incarceration  in the area…..taking bets on how long before the majority of the cells will be full with some of our finest….druggies, and others in jail due to drug related issues….so sad…..but ‘just the facts.’
Jail was a need, according a Bladen County Grand Jury and a Superior Court Judge….Now, Bladen County Schools need attention as well…
How much government can we afford?  Not sure….the 8 cent tax increase is the largest by far that I recall.
Bladen County Board of Education meets Thursday to continue work on their budget.  They are receiving the same amount of county funds as last year…and they do not know and not sure anyone has any idea, how they will ‘fare’ after the honorables in Raleigh complete their budget…
Kinda frustrating how the NC Legislature talks tax reduction, however, the mandates continue and the only source of revenue is local taxes….Same old story, one level of government mandates to another and cuts the funding….A county, by law, is a subdivision of the state.  Locals budgets must be approved by June 30…No such mandate for the legislature…Some things never change, been that way for years.
A reminder of the WRAL (WILM) documentary “An Obvious Suspect”.  It relates to the death of two Bladen County ladies nearly 40 years ago and the incarceration of Joseph Sledge for 37 years before a three judge panel released him and the state of North Carolina paid him thousands of dollars for being ‘wrongly convicted.’  I have no idea…Maybe tonight’s documentary will shed some light on the subject.  It will be aired on the two TV stations at 7 p.m.
Ambition is still rewarded….with higher taxes.
The rich and the poor are alike.  They both complain about taxes.
I have enough money to last me the rest of my life, unless I buy something.  Jackie Mason
robert g hester
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