So Bronson When Is Enough Enough? Rocky Mount NC Utilities War

In response to: Bronson Williams, Nehemiah Smith Jr. vs Rev. Andre Knight and The Rocky Mount City Council A Utilities War

I agree when is enough enough?

I have been listening to The Truth Hurts Broadcast for several weeks and I have found it to be quite interesting and many times comical. Since Bronson works the boards for Connections Talk Show that comes on immediately after his talk show, George Fisher host and myself the co-host find ourselves discussing the Rocky Mount Utilities almost daily as well.

I am trying to figure out what is really going on here because discussions have gone from utilities to getting rid of the city council members (recall) and folks calling in just simply talking about people. I have no problem with folks talking about people but when one know it is lies and it is being allowed to spread across the airwaves that is not good.

It is clear that the light bills are high in Rocky Mount NC. So why are they high? Is it something that the city council members are doing? If so, spell it out along with what you want them do. And then we all can see if it is workable.

Black white issue. I hear some folks say they do not see any whites going down to the city hall complaining about their utility bills. I have heard some say the white council members say they don’t have people complaining to them about their utilities.

I have said that people who are complaining should reach out to their council members especially the black ones who they should feel comfortable talking to to tell them about their concerns. I said many black folks didn’t feel that they had access to the previous council which used to be predominately white.

”There are those in city government and the general public who would paint this issue in terms of Black and White; but this is an issue of fairness, affordability, and fiscal responsibility. However, I am not so naïve as to believe that, for the most part, the poor minority communities of the city are not carrying the heavier load that these burdensome utility rates have brought about.” Well the letter went from saying it is not about black and white but the last sentence says otherwise. This is so damn contradictory. It is my opinion that Nehemiah is trying to win the white support in his conversation about the utilities.

I have heard many say that this council (black majority) has inherited what the previous council done before them. Over the years they have made some changes and are working on more and I do know this as a fact.

Bronson Williams one of the stalwart voices in this struggle, continues to address the issue on his daily call-in show and I agree. However I question his motives. As it relates to his personal incident, I have heard him say several things about how it happened. He said he forgot to pay his bill and that he paid it late purposely. Well I believe he should have gotten another bill that would have told him that he was behind from last month. But his lights got turned off at the radio station anyway. So why in the hell didn’t he just pay his bill?

Bronson is a voice for the voiceless and is galvanizing the community behind the common cause of lowering high utilities. I have no problem with that however what I do have a problem with is all the ignorant conversations that are taking place.

I know that Bronson have allowed atleast one person to call in and say some things when he knew it was not truth. This is in regards to a caller calling in talking about an agenda item at last weeks NAACP meeting. The caller did not attend the meeting but called in about something that somebody told them. I didn’t hear what the caller said but I have received several phone calls about the conversation. I tried calling the person to have a conversation with them about the issue but they wanted to talk about why they do not like Andre and Reuben. I told them I didn’t want to talk about that and that I wanted to share with them about why not only is Andre talking about Bronson joining up with the tea partiers but George Fisher and myself have had a conversation with Bronson during  one of our TV talk shows (Connections) about him meeting with the annexation organization and certain white persons who have other agendas.

As it relates to a scare tactic about black folks who join the tea partiers, I don’t get it. I just fine it strange as hell that Bronson would make it known on our TV Talk Show that he was going to meet with these folks who are fighting the council on other issues hoping to gain their support for his mission about the utilities. I say this is crazy as hell.

I say if Bronson and anyone would like to do the recall thing, I say go for it. I have no problem with that.

Bronson has done and is doing something that local churches and other organizations like the local chapter of the NAACP have yet to do. I say bull manure because there has been some individuals such as Carol Batchelor, Lewis Turner, Dorothy Cook, Jessie Fraiser,  George Fisher, Black  Workers For Justice, myself and the list goes on that has been dealing with the utilities issue dating back to the late 90’s.

One day I heard Jessie Fraiser and another lady talking about they were going to have a meeting at Braswell Library to see just how many folks were interested in trying to form a committee to address Rocky Mount utilities. I called George Fisher and told him that we needed to go to the meeting since we have been dealing with the utilities issue.

George and I attended the meeting and out of the initial meeting we decided to meet weekly at the OIC. Mind you I do not live in Rocky Mount. I don’t remember Bronson along with many folks who have called in to Truth Hurts Broadcast coming to a meeting.

George and I attended the meetings until we could not take anymore. We had thought it would be best to work on something that would be doable and results could be seen soon. Well new people kept coming to the meetings and they wanted to talk about their experiences and we were not accomplishing anything. The things the initial group had agreed upon was to deal with the following:

1. How customer service deal with people. 

2. Seek to get the policy changed for folks who had life support equipment in their homes.

3. Making sure people meters were read.

During many conversations I hear folks say that when they found out their meters had not been read, they had them read and their utility bills went down drastically. I understand this is what happened with Nehemiah and this is why he got involved. I was told that he said the meter reader did not read his parent’s meter so he seen Councilman Andre Knight across the street from his home. He called Knight and told him and Knight called down to the city and the meter reader came back out within 30 minutes and read the meter. I understand the bill went down a little more than 50%. Nehemiah said the meter reader said he thought the fence was locked so he guestimated. I also heard that Nehemiah Jr. confronted Knight because Knight supposedly told or had someone to tell Nehemiah not to come to the council meeting because his issue had been addressed. I understand Nehemiah and Knight got into a verbal confrontation after a city council meeting.

When I heard Nehemiah tell the story on The Truth Hurts Broadcast I don’t recall him telling the whole story especially mentioning that he had complained to Knight and the meter reader came back. Nehemiah says he is concerned about other folks with high utilities and I agree. I am concerned also and do not live in Rocky Mount but the bull manure that is being said on The Truth Hurts Broadcast is just crazy. I agree Nehemiah and others ought to be concerned about other folks utilities but the best thing they and those concerned can do is to reach out to all the citizens to make sure their meters are being read.

Folks kept asking me do I listen to The Truth Hurts Talk Show so I began to tune in. I had been listening to the broadcast for several days before I called in. One day Bronson made a comment and I called in and responded because he made a statement about what some folks have said and I told him I have said the very same so I am calling in to say why I said it and I stand behind what I said and will say in the future.

I will let the churches speak for themselves since I am not a member of a church in Rocky Mount NC. Since Nehemiah just moved back here, I am sure his family members are a member of a church here so what have they done? Bronson is a member of a church here so what have they done?

I am  a life fully paid member of the NAACP and a member of the Rocky Mount Branch where Andre Knight is the president I am going to address this as a member and not speaking for the branch where I have served as 1st, 2nd and 3rd vice president and on the executive committee since the early 90’s dating back to when Rev. Elbert Lee was the president. As it relates to the mission of the NAACP you can read it here.

I am unaware of anyone who have brought a discriminatory complaint to the NAACP as it relates to their utilities. I say file a complaint with the local NAACP and then you can say that they have not done anything. If it is something that they can do and they do not do it, I will address that issue myself.

There have been others who have tried to organize around the utilities issue however Bronson is able to reach out to a broader level because he is on the radio. What tickles the hell out of me is he sit back and allow folks to say there has not been anyone before him that has organized around the utilities issue when he knows that that is not “truth.”

You see I am for truth no matter who it is for or against and I will not allow untruth to be told and and not say anything. I don’t care if I don’t deal with the person who the untruth is being told on, I will speak up for them on certain things and that we disagree on I will speak to that as well.

So who am I? I am a grassroots effective community activist and I hold all folks accountable and ask others to hold me accountable. I have no permanent friends, no permanent enemies only permanent interest.

See related:

Bronson Williams, Nehemiah Smith Jr. vs Rev. Andre Knight and The Rocky Mount City Council A Utilities War

ElectriCities

Rocky Mount Utilities

Bronson Williams, Nehemiah Smith Jr. vs Rev. Andre Knight and The Rocky Mount City Council A Utilities War

Note: The following article was written by: Nehemiah Smith Jr. per Bronson Williams on his talk show Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Inside Edition

When is enough enough? Mayor and council shrink from the service for which they were elected

Apathetic city council leaves citizens to their own devices over utilities (Read more @ The Promise FM 107.3)

From The DCN Publisher: I will respond to this later because I have been actively engaged in the Utilities saga in Rocky Mount NC since the 90’s. I am a life member of the NAACP so therefore I will respond as The DCN Publisher and as a member of the Rocky Mount Branch NAACP.

Crossing at 64 to add restaurant

A mixed-use project in Edgecombe County that has been in the planning stages for more than a decade has signed its first tenant.

Last month, Tands Inc. finalized an agreement with Rocky Mount/Edgecombe Community Development Corp. to build a new Bojangles restaurant at the Crossing at 64 project on property where Business U.S. 64 crosses the U.S. 64 bypass. Business U.S. 64 also is known as Raleigh Street. (Read more @ The Rocky Mount Telegram)

See related:

Rocky Mount NC – Two businesses slated to locate in Crossing at 64

Crossing at 64

I Attended The Local NAACP Meeting on Thursday And Friday I Received A Call About The President Talking About Someone

I attended the NAACP meeting on Thursday evening and I thought it went well. This was the 1st meeting that I have attended since last year because several folks keep mess stirred up. The last time I attended a meeting the State NAACP President Rev. William J. Barber II and Carl White District Director were present.

On yesterday I received a phone call that Ms. Mattie called to “The Truth Hurts Talk Show” and said that Rocky Mount NAACP President Andre Knight had talked about Bronson Williams the owner of FM 107.3 The Promise and host of The Truth Hurts Talk Show. Bronson’s name didn’t come up during the time I was at the meeting.

Bronson Williams formed the “The Truth Hurts Talk Show” to talk about the Rocky Mount City Council and the Utility Bills. Williams has been trying to pull some folks together to deal with the issue of “high utilities” in Rocky Mount NC.

I do not believe the President would have talked about Bronson in the negative at the meeting knowing that a mother and daughter who are members would put it out there.

I called the President on yesterday but he was in a banquet so I am waiting to hear back from him so that I can ask him what was said at the meeting before I arrived.

What did happen at the meeting is a female whom is a new member, I believe is the publicity chair, asked a member to pass me a copy of the agenda. The female member said to her, “I am not passing that to him,” however I couldn’t hear the rest of what she said. This person is the treasurer and do not like me because of the President. She also sent me a Christmas Card a couple of years ago and I returned it to sender. Why in the hell would she send me a Christmas Card when she do not like me? You see this is why I do not attend the meetings because I don’t have time for her and her mother’s drama.

As soon as I hear from the President I am going to post my findings. I may ask for some contacts for some others who attended the meeting to ask them what was said.

Stay tuned.

Curmilus Dancy II
Life Fully Paid Member NAACP

Originally posted: 6.26.10 8:40 AM

Note: Spoke to the President and he said that it came up about the utilities and he said that Bronson was lining up with some folks who are with the Tea Party who have other agendas.

He said it was said that the NAACP need to reach out to Bronson because he was a mouthpiece and his broadcast is heard as far as up to Virginia.

Utilities was an agenda item for Thursday’s meeting because it  was discussed at the May meeting. The President didn’t attend the May meeting because he was out of town attending the National NAACP Leadership 500 Summit in Florida.

I have said it over and over again we can have our differences however when there is something that we can do to help make a difference for all folks then we need to lay our differences aside. Sometimes some folks just need to go home, sit down and shut the hell up. Rev. Al Sharpton said it best in this video, “If You Are Scared, Say It.”

Why I Don’t Support Decriminalization of Marijuana

Decriminalization (as opposed to "Legalization") refers to simply removing criminal penalties for marijuana or any other drug.  It usually means that possession of personal amounts becomes a civil penalty (like a parking ticket), but some people also take it to mean the complete removal of cannabis laws from the books. A civil penalty bill (HB-541) was attempted in the 2009 Montana legislature, but it did not pass.

Here’s why I think decrim is not worth fighting for.

First, let’s dispense with the "remove all cannabis laws from the books" proposal. As an intoxicant, treating marijuana like spinach or dandelions will simply never happen, at least not this century.

There is decent public support for the idea of civil-penalty-style decrim. People generally don’t think you can or should go to jail for possessing marijuana, but Montana law specifies a jail term of up to six months for just a single joint. Even if you don’t go to jail, when you’re convicted of a crime, you consequently acquire a permanent criminal record that will show up in background checks, you may be drug tested, lose your job or housing, be barred from professional associations, education, grants, public assistance, gun ownership, and so forth. So, the idea of decrim, protecting the end user from these consequences, seems sound.

My three main problems with decrim are:

  1. Decrim leaves the criminal black market intact.
  2. There’s little reason for people who do not use marijuana to support decrim.
  3. Decrim supports the lie that there’s something wrong about marijuana use.
Decrim and the Black Market

So, imagine that decrim has passed and now marijuana enthusiasts face only a $50 parking-ticket-style fine if they get caught with a personal bag of weed. That’s helpful to the tens of thousands of Montana adults who carry a bag of weed from time to time, no doubt.

But where did they get the bag? From Debbie the Dealer, who A) imported in bulk from Oregon or California or Canada or Mexico, or B) grew it in a closet or spare room or warehouse or garden.

There’s little public support for Debbie’s activities. Her business is "illegitimate"; she commits a felony to engage in it.  Big law enforcement budgets are justified by her activities. She risks losing her house and car and everything due to civil asset forfeiture laws. She pays no taxes on her profits. Anyone she hires to help out likewise engages in a felony, pays no taxes, has no workers comp, etc. Her product is not regulated for purity or potency or adulterants. She probably has to deal in cash, and is hence a target for robbery; she may arm herself to prepare for every transaction, which must take place in out-of-the-way locations.

So, decrim, as generally proposed, leaves most of the apparatus of prohibition in place. It would protect a lot of people from arrest, which is a big benefit, but I argue that’s not good enough, especially when you consider my next two problems with decrim.

Decrim and Public Support

You can motivate a lot of people with altruistic arguments about justice and compassion. Lots of people agree that jail time is not an appropriate penalty for pot possession. Nearly all regular users of marijuana (something like 12% of adults) will agree with you. Add in some libertarians and those who smoked pot "back in the day" or know someone who enjoys the occasional "special brownie", and you may indeed get a majority to endorse your decrim proposal.

If we can assuage their concerns though, we should be able to generate even stronger support for a taxed, regulated model for marijuana from:

  • Parents who want to keep pot away from their kids and consequently demand that marijuana sales require age verification.
  • Pot-haters who want to "tax those people who aren’t paying their fair share".
  • Businesspeople who see marijuana as an opportunity for legitimate entrepreneurial endeavors and economic growth.
  • Local cops and prosecutors and judges who want to spend more time dealing with real criminals that threaten life and property.
  • Politicians and criminal justice advocates who want to disrupt the criminal gangs currently in control of much of the marijuana industry.
  • Civic leaders who see the potential for a new income stream for government to support education and health care and other public services.
  • Economic developers and chambers of commerce and other business associations that see the opportunity for the rise of a whole new class of agricultural producers, processors, and retailers.

If we can do a good enough job describing these benefits to these audiences, we will eventually pass a comprehensive marijuana legalization bill in Montana and nationwide.

Decrim Supports The Lie

My third problem with decrim is that it continues to support the lie that there’s something wrong, something blameworthy, about using marijuana.

By continuing to maintain penalties for merely possessing or growing a plant, we support the absurd contention that there’s something evil about the plant itself, and that those who dare to partake of it are themselves somehow morally tainted. Inherent in such a policy is a denial of our fundamental right as adults to decide what to put in our bodies.

We need to be clear with the public that we do not support driving under the influence, or any other irresponsible behavior with marijuana. But we must object vigorously to the baseless claim that my vaporizer is somehow a sin, while my neighbor’s glass of wine is not.

Decrim isn’t good enough. It preserves the black market, fails to draw support from important groups, and supports the lie that there’s something morally wrong about marijuana use.

Instead, we need to fully legitimize marijuana in a responsible system of taxation and regulation similar to alcohol, being sure to include the right to produce your own at home (as we do with beer and wine).

Anything less just isn’t worth fighting for.

Efficacy
PO Box 1234
860 657 8438
Hartford, CT 06143
efficacy@msn.com
www.Efficacy-online.org
"THE DRUG WAR IS MEANT TO BE WAGED NOT WON"

Working to end race and class drug war injustice, Efficacy is a non profit
501 (c) 3 organization founded in 1997. Your gifts and donations are tax
deductible

See related:

Drug War

REGIONAL PUBLIC HEARING ON POLICE MISCONDUCT, RACIAL PROFILING IN GREENVILLE

IMMEDIATE RELEASE

25 June 2010

Contact:  Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, State President, 919-394-8137

                 Mrs. Amina J. Turner, State Executive Director, 919-682-4700

                 Atty.  Irv Joyner, Legal Redress Chair, 919-682-4700

     Atty. Al McSurely, State Communications Chair, 919-389-2905

                 Mr. Calvin Henderson, President, Pitt County NAACP, 252-758-7645

NAACP TO HOLD REGIONAL PUBLIC HEARING ON

POLICE MISCONDUCT, RACIAL PROFILING IN GREENVILLE

The NC State Conference of the NAACP along with the Southern Coalition for Social Justice and the UNC Center for Civil Rights will conduct a public hearing for Eastern North Carolina to receive public comment on police misconduct, excessive force and racial profiling.  It will be held on Monday, June 28 at 7:00pm at the Lucille Gorham Intergenerational Center located at 1100 Ward Street in West Greenville.  Persons or youth who are 18 years and younger and have experienced an incident of excessive force or police misconduct must present with an adult. All speakers must sign in before speaking. 

Through its Law Enforcement Accountability project, the NAACP has developed a “smart and safe” framework in which to advocate for equal justice and safer communities.  This hearing is an effort to receive live reports of incidents and allegations and to collect statistical data from the region.

NAACP strongly believes that all communities seek a fair and just administration and enforcement of the law, and that all communities, irrespective of race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age or religion have a right to be safe.  A report released by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and The Rights Working Group indicated that, “racial and ethnic profiling by members of law enforcement at federal, state and local levels is one of today’s most significant challenges to equality.”

State NAACP President, Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, remarked, “Our goal in advocating for justice in the criminal justice system is to eliminate disparate treatment of African-Americans and other minorities in all aspects of law enforcement and criminal justice.  As the oldest civil rights organization in the nation, we are mandated to stay informed of issues that occur in our communities, and investigate and then working with key stakeholders such as civic leadership the faith community, and other organizations to ensure that law enforcement is just and fair in both administration of justice and the enforcement of the law.”

Mr. Calvin Henderson, Pitt County Branch of the NAACP can be contacted at 252-758-7645 or the State Office at 1-866-NC-NAACP. ###


Amina Josey Turner
Exec Dir
NC NAACP
P O Box 335
Durham, NC  27702
919-682-4700 V  919-682-4711 F
1-866-NC-NAACP



See related:

Greenville City Councilwoman Kandie Smith Arrested

Job Vacancy – Wake Education Advocates Network Coordinator of “Great Schools Initiative”

1. JOB VACANCY

Wake Education Advocates Network

Coordinator of “Great Schools Initiative”

July 1, 2010 through December 31, 2010

Contract Position

Wake Education Advocates (WEA), a network of organizations and individuals working for

educational equity in Wake County, seeks a six-month contract-based coordinator of the Great

Schools Initiative (GSI). This is an initiative to promote civic engagement and community

advocacy related to issues of diversity, equity and adequacy in education in Wake County

public schools. The goal of GSI is to empower those most impacted by school assignment

changes—low-income students and students of color and their families—to advocate for diversity

and equity in education. We expect the coordinating activities for GIS to be time intensive and

require an average of 40 hours a week. Compensation is $26,000 plus no more than $1,000 in

travel and expenses.

The YWCA of the Greater Triangle serves as the fiscal agent for GSI and will manage the

contracting process, fiscal management and grants administration. The Coordinator will work

closely with and be supervised by the YWCA. The Coordinator will be expected to work from

the YWCA 3-4 days a week.

Job responsibilities of the Coordinator:

1. Responsible for coordination, planning, communication, oversight and evaluation of all

activities and services relating to GSI from July 1, 2010 through December 31, 2010.

2. Make weekly reports to GSI steering committee.

3. Work closely with the YWCA Director of Advocacy and Community Initiatives to manage

and implement grant requirements.

4. Work with GSI work groups and steering committee to develop short-term work plans,

benchmarks and budgets.

5. Regularly communicate with GSI workgroups and ensure workgroup tasks are completed.

6. Write and maintain all meeting minutes, grant reports, project reports and other relevant

documentation related to the project.

7. Manage the day-to-day operations involved in WEA efforts.

8. Participate in staff development meetings, and other appropriate training as designated.

9. Other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications:

1. Minimum of two years relevant professional experience in community advocacy and

organizing

2. Strong facilitation, diplomacy and organizational skills

3. Well-organized, extremely detail oriented, able to meet deadlines and work independently

4. Strong written, verbal, and computer skills

2

5. Experience with anti-oppression work and concepts (a power analysis related to race,

age, gender, class and other significant social themes) and a demonstrated commitment

to social and economic justice

6. Knowledge of Wake County community and education issues

Please submit cover letter, resume or CV and two references via email to

bburge@ywcatriangle.org.

Equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. People of color are encouraged to apply.

2. Request for Proposals

NORTH CAROLINA ENERGY OFFICE

NOTICE OF REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS

TRAINING FOR N.C. ENERGY CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS (RECOVERY FUNDS)

The North Carolina Energy Office issues this request for proposals from contractors to develop, implement, and execute a program to train North Carolina Code Enforcement Officers on the North Carolina Energy Conservation Code. Funds for this program come from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and are intended to result in significant and sustained job creation and energy efficiency. The selected contractor will work with the Energy Office and the N.C. Department of Insurance to approve training materials and instructors. Proposals should include the following: 1) develop training content and material for the 2009 N.C. Energy Conservation Code; 2) delivery of training to code enforcement officers in all jurisdictions of the state; 3) develop an online training program; 4) create, develop and write a tutorial on the 2012 N.C. Energy Conservation Code; 5) develop a method to verify code enforcement compliance with the 2009 North Carolina Energy Conservation Code. The focus of these efforts shall be to build long-term understanding of the code requirements and lasting capabilities to meet or exceed all required Energy Code standards and promote energy conservation.  Sealed proposals subject to the conditions of this RFP will be received until 10 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 2, 2010.  A copy of the RFP can be found online at: https://www.ips.state.nc.us/IPS/AGENCY/PDF/07521900.pdf.  Questions must be submitted in writing or by e-mail to: Allison Tart, Purchasing & Contracts Officer, N.C. Dept. of Commerce, 30` N. Wilmington St., Room 586; Raleigh, N.C. 27601 or atart@nccommerce.com no later than Thursday, July 15, 2010 at 10:00 a.m.