ONLINE MARCH 28, 2019
BEAUTY IN THE SEASON OF LENT
A wooden cross
stands between two flowering Redbud trees, also known
as "Judas trees," in the parking lot of Smithfield's
Centenary United Methodist Church.
This variety of tree is evident in numerous yards
throughout town this time of year, blooming ahead of
many other trees and shrubs sure to "explode" in
stunning colors in the days before us. For more
about the legend of the Judas Tree, go here>
Lamm's last week on the air; WTSB won't shut down
He's retiring after his daily
1-4 p.m. radio show this Friday (March 29), ending a
career of 72 years on the air.
His station WTSB first announced that it would be going
off the air at the end of this Sunday's programming.
That has changed with a lease announced today (Thursday)
with a new operator.
READ MORE about that here>
Smithfield Council gets budget briefing;
after revaluation, will tax rate be cut?
Town Manager Mike Scott told the
Smithfield Council Tuesday evening that Johnston
County's revaluation of real estate for property
taxation is likely to produce $500,000 in additional
revenue for the town during the new fiscal year that
starts July 1.
That's assuming the town's property-tax rate of 57 cents
per $100 valuation remains the same.
How much, then, could the rate be cut that's "revenue
Mr. Scott said each penny of the town's tax rate brings
in about $95,000 annually. A five-cent cut in the rate
would come close to negating that extra $500,000 in
revenue resulting from revaluation, council members
No decision on that question was forthcoming at
Tuesday's opening budget session. Instead, the council
spent the evening reviewing requests from department
heads for capital improvements and additional personnel
in Fiscal 2019-20.
MORE about Tuesday's budget-planning
of revaluation, April 25 is the deadline to file
a "formal appeal" regarding specific disagreements
with the county's recent assignment of new real-estate
values for property taxation. Actually, the Johnston
County Board of Equalization and Review will begin
hearing cases in a series of meetings starting next
For more information about the appeals process, go here>
Schools cite various "Employees of Year"
Katherine Myers, school
nutrition assistant at Smithfield-Selma High, was
honored as a Johnston County Public Schools "Employee of
the Year" in her field at a reception last week.
Offering congratulations is Superintendent of Schools
Ross Renfrow. She was one of six "educators that serve
outside of a classroom setting" who were so honored. A
panel of retired educators chose the winners from
"hundreds of nominations."
County Public Schools photo
READ MORE on the Johnston
County Public Schools website>
Neuse Charter beats SSS in girls soccer
The Cougars from Neuse Charter
School shut out Smithfield-Selma's Spartans 2-0 in a
match played last Friday afternoon. Earlier this month,
the SSS girls won a match against their neighborhood
high-school scores on today's SPORTS &
Chamber's CEO chosen
for national fellowship
Mike Mancuso, president and CEO
of the Triangle East Chamber of Commerce (formerly the
Smithfield-Selma Chamber), has been selected to
participate in the U.S. Chamber's Business Leads
Fellowship Program. He'll be among 33 state and local
Chamber executives taking part in the second class of
this three-month-long training regimen.
READ the full announcement on the
Ribbon-cutting at JCC's
new Cyber Cafe Express
The Chamber of Commerce is
hosting a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 9 a.m. Monday
(April 1) at the recently opened Cyber Cafe Express at
Johnston Community College. A
component of non-profit Johnston County Industries
(JCI), the coffee shop is located in the Student Lounge
inside the Wilson Building. It's open to the public
Monday-Friday from 7:30 a.m. till 2 p.m. JCI also
operates the Cyber Cafe in the Johnston Medical Mall
(former Burlington Mills plant) in Smithfield.
LOCAL GOVERNMENT AGENDAS
Board of Commissioners
10 a.m. & 6 p.m. Monday, April 1
Johnston County Courthouse, 207 E. Market Street,
• At the morning session the board will hear a funding request from
the Archer Lodge Veterans Memorial Committee, get
updates on activities of Johnston-Lee-Harnett Community
Action and Johnston Regional Airport, hear a request
from Beverage Destruction Service to set up a "Johnston
County Green Initiative," consider an agreement to
purchase water from Sampson County to serve the Johnston
East distribution system, and award contracts for
water-main extensions in two rural water districts:
Elevation and Buffalo.
• At the evening session the board will consider
an agreement regarding the county's participation in
construction of a segment of the Mountains-to-Sea
Trail between Clayton and Smithfield. The board
will conduct public hearings on three petitions for
rezoning of properties for business purposes in Clayton,
Cleveland, and O'Neals townships.
View the full agendas for both
Smithfield Town Council
7 p.m. Tuesday, April 2
Town Hall, 350 E. Market Street, Smithfield
Among items on the agenda:
• Adoption of an ordinance to limit the tethering of
animals in town.
• Presentation of Police Department's "Officer of the
Year" award to Detective Sergeant Dale Wood.
• Approval of three special events: "Poochapalooza
Festival" on April 27 at the Second Street Dog Park,
Riders Meet Circuit car show on June 30 at Sound Station
and Security, and a "Craft Beer Crawl" on September 20
in Downtown Smithfield.
• Public hearings: (1) rezoning requested by
John A. Whitley for property at the northeast corner of
South Third and Woodall streets from R-8 residential to
O/I (Office/Institutional); (2) special-use permit
requested by Will Roland to allow for a place of worship
in a B-3 (Highway Entrance Business) district at the
intersection of West Market Street and Whitley Drive;
(3) special-use permit requested by Bonnie Godwin to
allow a residential dwelling on property in an O/I
district on the north side of North Street just east of
its intersection with Seventh Street.
the full agenda with supporting documents>
7th Street Marketplace & The Chicken
Market Street (US 70 Business) at 7th
DEATHS & FUNERALS
Each week we'll post links to obituaries about persons
who have died during the past week. We will monitor the
websites of local funeral homes to compile our list, and
we welcome links provided by readers to obituaries of
persons with Smithfield connections who have died
outside our immediate area.
STALLINGS, 83 -
died March 26
BRIDGETTE JEANETTE STEWART, 56 - died March 24
JUSTIN STEELE FULMER, 30 -
died March 23
GLENDA DAVIS JOHNSON, 81 - died March 22