We Need Answers to Jail Questions
Did anyone else attending the Moore County Commissioners meeting on Sept. 7 notice the classic example of irony that occurred in the sequence of agenda items?
I’m referring to the recognition made by Mrs. Clendenin concerning “Citizen Voter Registration Awareness Month,” followed almost immediately by the presentation made by Mr. Larkin on the proposed detention center costs.
With the recognition, we have Clendenin asking the commissioners to declare September “Citizen Voter Registration Awareness Month” in Moore County to increase voter registration, while in Larkin’s presentation on detention center costs, we have a topic that the commissioners have chosen to not give the citizens of Moore County the right to vote on.
The sequence of the two events, while humorous, is actually a sad commentary on the commissioners and their denial to put the approximate $42 million issue on the November ballot as a referendum question. Why they consider an increase of almost 40 percent to the total Moore County debt acceptable without voter input is a question they have, thus far, refused to answer.
I acknowledge that the back-door financing they propose, limited obligation bonds, for the detention center is permissible under state statute and does not require voter approval.
However, just because Raleigh legalized the loophole and has used it to incur hundreds of millions in nonvoter debt for the state doesn’t mean that the commissioners should jump on the bandwagon and do the same to Moore County.
Why the commissioners chose to incur a more costly form of debt versus the traditional form of general obligation debt is another question unanswered by them.
We need a new jail; however, the residents of Moore County have a right to voice their opinion through voting on the matter.
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