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Stephens wants more DSS control

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LUMBERTON — Commissioner Jerry Stephens wants the county to become more involved in overseeing operations at the county’s Department of Social Services.“We need to have more authority over there,” Stephens said. “Right now all the county commissioners can do is provide money for the department to operate.”Oversight of the Department of Social Services’ operations is now the responsibility of a five-member board of directors. The agency’s day-to-day operations, including hiring and firing of employees, is the responsibility of the agency’s executive director, Becky Morrow, who reports directly to the directors.


Football roundup: Purnell Swett stomps Anson

WADESBORO — After losing the past two weeks, the Purnell Swett football team was in need of a win, and was able to get one against Anson on Friday night, coming away with a 35-7 road victory.“Our defense played really well,” Purnell Swett coach Mark Heil said. “By far the best our defense has played and by far the most physical we have played. We created seven turnovers, and should have had nine and we scored twice on defense.”The Rams (2-3)...

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3 face drug charges in separate cases

LUMBERTON — Three people have been charged with drug crimes following separate busts by the Robeson County’s Sheriff’s Office’s Narcotics Division.A Red Springs man was arrested at a home on Huggins Road on Friday afternoon after residents filed complaints about drug activity at the home.Timmy Locklear, 52, is charged with possession of a firearm by a felon, trafficking in opium or heroin, possession with intent to manufacture or deliver a schedul...

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Oversight needed to stop pilfering of HUD dollars

When it comes to letters to the editor and complaints, it’s really no contest.This newspaper gets far more from Lumbee Indians who believe they are being unfairly denied by the Tribal Government their share of money for housing. The letters and complaints are remarkably the same, adding to their veracity: That tribal members with connections to someone at The Turtle are given priority, and that no matter how much we kick and scream, our phone calls are not returned and our co...

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SeHealth joins effort to register new voters

LUMBERTON — Southeastern Health and the Robeson County Board of Elections will partner to register voters on Tuesday, which is National Voter Registration Day.Residents can register to vote in the main lobby of Southeastern Regional Medical Center from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and in the lobby of Southeastern Health Mall, on the campus of Biggs Park Mall, from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.The theme for this year’s National Voter Registration Day is Celebrating Democracy in Ame...

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Magazine’s potrayal unfair to city

As the executive director of the Lumberton Visitors Bureau, I promote Lumberton and Robeson County to bring travelers hert. Tourism is one of our largest industries, bringing over $127 million into our county last year and over 1,050 jobs.After receiving the September issue of Business NC, I am confused by your magazine’s purpose. Why would a magazine named Business North Carolina publish an article that degrades a county in the state it represents? The name of the magazine i...

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How long before being gay is a fireable offense?

North Carolina Congressman Robert Pittenger made headlines recently for suggesting that firing people from their jobs solely because they are gay is one of the “freedoms we enjoy” as Americans.Pittenger’s startlingly offensive remarks came as supporters of a federal employment non-discrimination act that would protect gay workers on the job are trying to force a vote on the proposal in the U.S. House.

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UNCP releases schedule for mens basketball

PEMBROKE — A challenging preseason exhibition schedule, including a late-October home contest with Athletes In Action and a November contest at NCAA Division I University of Alabama-Birmingham, as well as 15 regular season home dates highlight the 2014-15 UNC Pembroke mens basketball schedule, which was released on Friday.The season starts in just over a month, with Moonlight Madness on Oct. 23 at 7 p.m. This year’s event will take place during homecoming week, and will...

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Hoggard hands LHS 2nd loss

WILMINGTON — The Lumberton football team sat one of its biggest weapons on Friday and struggled to make up for the lack of production in a 35-7 loss at Hoggard.“Josh is the biggest part of our offense right now, so it affected us in that way. But I’m very confident in the running backs we have. I’m proud of the running backs we got. That had nothing to do with us losing tonight,” Lumberton coach Mike Setzer said. “He’s got a situation where...

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Tribe told to end veterans services

PEMBROKE — Services that have been offered for years to Lumbee veterans through the Lumbee Tribal Government can no longer be funded by federal money provided by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.Members of the Tribal Council were informed early this week by Tribal Chairman Paul Brooks that the services could no longer be funded by dollars from the Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act. According to federal regulations, that money is...

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Tobacco buyout comes to end

LUMBERTON — The federal tobacco buyout program is coming to an end, pulling millions of dollars from an already fading industry once known as Robeson County’s “cash crop.”According to Giles Floyd, director of the local Farm Service Agency, the Tobacco Transition Payment Program has consistently provided Robeson County tobacco producers with about $18.7 million each year since it was established under the Fair and Equitable Tobacco Reform Act of 2004....

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Judge clears way for private school grants

RALEIGH (AP) — A North Carolina appeals court has decided students approved for publicly-funded scholarships to attend private schools this fall can receive the money even as a trial court judge struck down the program as unconstitutional.The state Court of Appeals on Friday stayed part of an order last month by Judge Robert Hobgood holding funds for the Opportunity Scholarships program while the heart of the case is appealed.The ruling could mean about 1,900 stude...

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Charges dropped against protestors

RALEIGH — The top prosecutor in North Carolina’s capital is dropping criminal charges against hundreds of people arrested at mass protests at the state legislature last year.Wake County District Attorney Ned Mangum said Friday his move was prompted by a June 30 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court upholding the constitutional rights of people to peacefully assemble and protest government policies.That federal decision, which struck down a Massachusetts law limi...

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Bank takes control of Rockingham racetrack

ROCKINGHAM — A bank has taken control of the Rockingham Speedway as foreclosure proceedings against the owners work their way through the court system.Superior Court Judge David Lee issued a temporary restraining order on Sept. 8 that turned the track over to Salisbury-based Farmers and Merchants Bank and its managing agent, the Finley Group. Co-owners Andy Hillenburg of Concord and Bill R. Silas of Stuart, Florida, are accused of defaulting on a $4.2 million loan....

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NC jobless rate up for second straight month

RALEIGH — North Carolina’s unemployment rate increased for the second straight month to 6.8 percent in August, pushing it further above the national jobless rate.Figures released Friday show that North Carolina’s seasonally adjusted unemployment increased by 0.3 percentage points from July. The national rate was 6.1 percent for August.In North Carolina, the number of people with jobs fell by nearly 29,000 from July. The state’s labor force also dr...

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Woman charged with obstruction

LUMBERTON — A Red Springs woman’s plan to get her boyfriend out of jail backfired when she ended up behind bars for obstructing justice.Shaila Brianna Bowers, 22, went to the District Attorney’s Office on Sept. 8 and said her boyfriend, 20-year-old Jakell Sheron Thompson, was not responsible for a shooting that injured two people in St. Pauls on May 1.According to Erich Hackney, an investigator with the District Attorney’s Office, Bowers told him ...

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Crime report

TheftsHui Lin reported Thursday that a customer left Golden City restaurant on Kahn Drive in Lumberton without paying for an unknown amount of food, according to a police report.Nikki Nesbitt, of High Street, Lumberton, reported Thursday that $14 in cash was stolen from her wallet on a SEATS van, according to a police report.Leon Stubbs, of Summit Avenue, Lumberton reported Wednesday that his $25 black and purple Huffy bicycle was stolen, acco...

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Numbers trending toward Republicans

By every indicator, Republicans will do well this November. There are time-honored numbers to watch.One indicator is presidential approval ratings. It actually affects races down to dogcatcher. President Obama has a lower approval rating than he did in the 2010 midterms, which favored Republicans. In fact, its 4 points lower than in 1994 when Republicans took control of Congress. What’s worse for Democrats is the president has the lowest approval ratings of any president duri...

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