ONLINE APRIL 18, 2019
Community sunrise service at 6:30 a.m.
Sunday at Sunset Memorial Park
(US 70 Business @ NC 210 intersection)
Good Friday closings
Public schools and state,
county, and municipal offices are CLOSED;
banks, post offices, federal agencies are OPEN.
After revaluation, will property-tax rates
be adjusted downward, or stay the same?
Now that April 15 is behind us
--- and federal and state income taxes have been
calculated for last year and estimated for the year
ahead --- the next big tax question around here is what
will local property taxes look like for 2019?
The answer will come during the next month or so as
Johnston County's Board of Commissioners and
Smithfield's Town Council figure out what's to be
included in their budgets for the new fiscal year that
starts July 1.
Neither of those boards has decided on tax rates during
early rounds of budget talks.
The Smithfield Council met twice during the past week to
work through budget proposals with Town Manager Mike
Scott, who said at last Thursday's session that the
town's current property-tax rate of 57 cents per $100
valuation would need to be "just under" 54 cents to be
"revenue neutral" after the county completes the
revaluation process, now in the appeals mode.
Smithfield's tax rate has remained at 57 cents since
2003, when it was reduced from 63 cents following
countywide revaluation that year. The rate remained the
same after revaluation in 2011, in effect producing a
tax increase for Smithfield property owners.
MORE from the Town Council's budget sessions of
April 11 & 15>
A church organist for half a century
Thad Hardee began playing the
organ for services at Smithfield's First Baptist Church
in 1965, a year after graduating from high school here.
He's not the principal organist at First Baptist these
days, but he's still playing there, and at three other
churches, as a frequent substitute for special
Thad is a "product" of Smithfield's legendary piano
teacher Flora Canaday.
MORE on today's Feature Page>
THEY ARE "CHAMPIONS FOR CHILDREN"
These folks were
recognized by Johnston County's Partnership for
Children at last Friday's "Champions" breakfast for
their "significant achievements as individuals and
local businesses who are committed to quality early
experiences for young children": (left to right) in
front --- Dana Wooten, State Representative Donna
White, Colleen & Nate Roby, Mamie Moore, Brittney
& Larry DiBartolo, Tommie Biggins, Marty Clayton,
Partnership Executive Director Dwight Morris; in back
--- Regina Smith, Earl Worley for KS Bank, Chris Key,
Jeanelle McCain, Tim Johnson, Chuck Elliott, and Mae
for Children photo)
MORE about their contributions to the
ECU honors Smithfield professor
Smithfield's Johna Lee Faulconer (left), an associate
professor in the College of Education at East Carolina
University, has received an award "for her commitment
and enthusiasm in teaching and mentoring off-campus
students" and "demonstrated excellence in the delivery
of courses offered through distance education."
The award is named in honor of Max Ray Joyner (center),
former chair of the ECU Board of Trustees. Also pictured
is Regis M. Gilman (right), executive director of ECU's
Office of Academic Outreach, Continuing and Distance
Dr. Faulconer teaches in the College of Education's
Department of Literacy Studies, English Education, and
History Education. Nominees for the Joyner award must
receive student recommendations and peer reviews and
provide samples of course syllabi, tests, and teaching
materials. (East Carolina University photo)
7th Street Marketplace
& The Chicken Barn
Street (US 70 Business)
at 7th Street, Downtown
grad runs the Boston Marathon
Gwyn Reece, a 2018 graduate of
Smithfield-Selma High School who's now a freshman at
Duke University, ran the Boston Marathon on Monday,
finishing the 26.2 miles in 3 hours, 36 minutes, 36
The daughter of Michael and Mary Reece
of Smithfield, Gwyn competed on the SSS cross-country
team. She ran in Boston after qualifying on her own.
Her grandparents are Earl and Julia McCullers, formerly
A professional photographer captured Gwyn's
determination during the race.
about athletic achievements on the SPORTS &
ProStart winners advance to nationals
Among 52 Johnston
County students in Career and Technical Student
Organizations who will advance to national competition
in the next few months are members of the ProStart
Management team at Smithfield-Selma High School: (left
to right) Andrew Fitch, Maniya Mozingo, teacher
advisor Brenda Lillard, Ky'ra Joyner, and Aimee
Perryman. Finishing first in state competition, their
team planned a restaurant from the ground up --- named
"Flippin' Fire" and located inside an old fire house.
Their plan included facility design, menu, staff, and
marketing. The SSS team got an assist from chef Teddy
Diggs, a recognized industry leader who volunteered as
(Johnston County Public
DEATHS & FUNERALS
Each week we'll post links to obituaries about persons
who have died during the past week. We'll 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.
CONNIE LEE WILLIAMS GRICE, 70 - died April 14
MAUDE "CAROLINE" ELDRIDGE NIXON, 84 -
died April 13
KENNETH HUBERT WOOD, 88 -
died April 13