Thank You Ben Braddock Downtown Rocky Mount NC

Ben Braddock In our Central Business District there are no residents to displace. The few businesses that remain on Main Street welcome redevelopment. They are pleading for it. Gentrification as it’s thought of in Harlem, Seattle or Brooklyn is not a concern in our downtown Rocky Mount. Our downtown is a vacuum, an empty canvas. Let’s do something with it! Don’t wait for counsel or city management do do something. If you want to see downtown be more than it is currently go get a cup of coffee or ice cream cone at TRAX Coffee Bar, meet a friend for a glass of wine at Bin & Barrel and enjoy the courtyard, go browse the vinyl selection at Station Square Records, move your office downtown, buy a building, Do Something! You can make Rocky Mount want You want it to be!
The future of downtown is ultimately up to the Citizens of Rocky Mount.


Free Political Consulting – From a Main Street Bench – Shepheny Forgue Houghtlin

Free Political Consulting – From a Main Street Bench – Stepheny Is In

Posted on March 18, 2019 by Stepheny Forgue Houghtlin

“You never change things by fighting the existing reality.
To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”
Buckminster Fuller

You’ll pardon the use of a political slogan that is a cliche when I say,  It’s Time for a Change. As the candidates for City Council and for Mayor have declared themselves, I already think of them as ‘Change Candidates.’ Campaign Slogans that are successful are the ones we don’t have to think too deeply about but intuitively know are right. It IS time for a change of leadership on the City Council, along with a new energetic, experienced, independent, business-oriented Mayor.

The following are  ‘Change Candidates’ to believe in. –  Sandy Roberson, Kevin Jones, Lige Daughtridge, Richard Joyner, and Tarrick Pittman. It would be a mistake to think of Mr. Pittman as simply the man running against the current city councilmen and ignore his positive agenda for Ward I.  The rest of the candidates are not emboldened to run because of the investigations underway, but because they have the will, the experience, and knowledge to govern with Rocky Mount’s best interests in mind. Buckminster Fuller’s quote talks about building a new model and these ‘Change Candidates’ will provide new leadership, focused on the economic growth of Rocky Mount.

One more free consultant suggestion – that we treat these ‘Change Candidates’ as a slate. I have a friend who had direct experience in Chicago with a group of women who ran for various seats yet coordinated their messages, PR, interns, volunteers, printing, and speaking engagements. The end result – a consolidated message, individual and group print that furthered their collective campaigns. The voter turn-out was one of the highest in the history of the city! There is another plus to the slate approach — if I could give one donation, as I can afford, to support this slate, it falls under a tenant of mine….alone I can do so little, but together we can do so much.

Regardless of the political slogans each of the candidates uses, let’s make it our job to help however we can to get them elected. We all understand why this needs to happen. Let’s stay on the sunny side of the street and as a mentor of mine councils, Stay above the fray!     PS: I am waving my usual nickel consultant fee to all Main Street readers.

The Political Agitator’s response:

0 Responses to Free Political Consulting – From a Main Street Bench – Stepheny Is In
  1. Curmilus Dancy 2 (Butch) says:

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    March 18, 2019 at 11:14 am

    Wow! Because a few angry white folk who are mad because they don’t have the power, it has come to this mess.

    This is all about Race so black folk you better stay woke.

    How many of these white folk who are mad been in your Ward and/or talked to you about change? Have they asked you if you want the change they believe in? What about your voice? I guarantee you will not have a voice if you listen to this mess.

    Black folk if you don’t know Richard Joyner you better get to know him so you can hold him accountable. I know him and know he can be dangerous but so far he has been doing good.

    If you are not at the table, you are on the table.

Teacher gets deal in assault – Rocky Mount Telegram

A former Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools teacher has entered into an agreement to avoid prosecution in a case in which she’s accused of assaulting a middle-school student.

Jamie Dunn, 35, of Spring Hope, has been placed on unsupervised probation for six months and her case will be dismissed if she completes the following steps: 24 hours of community service, 90 days of supervised probation, an anger management course, and she is to stay away from the student and her family, according to court documents.

Dunn’s accused of using a closed fist to hit a 15-year-old female student on the arm April 30 at Rocky Mount Middle School, according to Dunn’s arrest warrant. The incident occurred in Dunn’s classroom. (Read more)

Tom Campbell: DMV mess demonstrates state sawed too short – Rocky Mount Telegram

The Gate Keeper’s response: This is a very good article.

The proposed DMV move brings to mind one of the old Three Stooges comedies, the one where one of the zany trio says, “I’ve cut this board three times and it’s still too short.” Our state continues to take cuts at property decisions and keeps coming up short.

State political leaders have known for decades that the Department of Motor Vehicles needed to move out of its headquarters on New Bern Avenue in Raleigh. The state has tried adding to, patching up, and working around asbestos and wiring problems that were genuine safety issues, even getting a waiver of safety laws to continue using the building until the legislature and executive branch would get their collective act together and take action. Dare we say this has been a classic case of government inefficiency? (Read more)

Rocky Mount NC – Downtown hotel plans stir conflict – Rocky Mount Telegram

Top city officials are on the verge of announcing a new hotel near the Rocky Mount Event Center while sitting on a state grant for a competing downtown project.

“Bringing in something new is not going to make people forget about the Carlton House,” said Tarrick Pittman during a meeting of the Central City Revitalization Panel on Thursday morning.

Pittman was joined by a chorus of downtown business owners expressing their frustration over City Hall stonewalling developers in favor of a pet project.

“It’s either incompetence or deliberate stalling,” said Councilwoman Chris Miller who sits on the panel as a representative of Downtown Renaissance, an organization with the goal of stabilization and preservation of the inner city of Rocky Mount.

State Commerce Secretary Anthony Copeland in October announced $6.9 million in grant funding for 21 rural area projects across the state. One of those projects is a $55,000 grant to support the renovation of the 46,400-square-foot Carlton House, a 64-room boutique hotel on Church Street, which is set to include a restaurant.

Copeland said the Carlton is being renamed the Monk Hotel to pay homage to jazz legend Thelonious Monk, who was born in Rocky Mount.

The project, which includes $4 million in private investment, is expected to create 11 jobs and boost business downtown. (Read more)

Rocky Mount NC – Official defends his hiring by city – Rocky Mount Telegram

SELMA — Selma Town Manager Elton Daniels is defending his recent hiring as Rocky Mount parks and recreation director by embattled City Manager Rochelle Small-Toney.

Daniels announced in a Jan. 8 Selma Town Council closed session that he was resigning effective Feb. 12 and will assume his new role Feb. 18 in Rocky Mount. Daniels’ salary will be $130,000 per year, compared to $90,000 for his predecessor Kelvin Yarrell, the parks director since 2013. In October, Small-Toney demoted Yarrell to cemetery maintenance supervisor.

In a series of stories, the Telegram questioned Daniels’ relationship with Small-Toney, the increase in salary over his predecessor and his experience in parks and recreation. The newspaper also detailed a 2012 incident when Daniels was cited for driving an unmarked police vehicle with blue lights while working as Sharpsburg town manager. (Read more)