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Democratic Brunswick Board of Commission Candidates Oppose Holden Beach Deal, Offshore Drilling

The Brunswick County Board of Commissioners has three of its five districts in play this year; however all county residents vote for all the districts.   Three Democrats are hoping to win seats on what is currently an all-Republican Board in a very red county.

William Flythe is a retired chemist who worked for two decades at Pfizer / ADM before retiring to Brunswick County and teaching high school and college chemistry.  After serving on the county’s planning board for one term, Flythe says he wants a seat on the commission because he witnessed a series of poor decisions made by the current board.

"First, they paid twice the tax value for a parcel of land in Holden Beach that would be used for a nature park -- $3.5 million vs. $1.7 million of tax value on the books.  Secondly, they voted not once, but twice in support of a resolution for seismic testing and offshore drilling for oil and gas."

Flythe says he’s also concerned about the more than $10 million of delinquent tax payments on the books. 

Fellow Democrat Wes Hickman says he’s also bothered by the Holden Beach land purchase and the offshore drilling support. 

"Well, first I wouldn’t be passing worthless resolutions like the current commission did that supported offshore drilling.  I wouldn’t be focusing on those kind of things.  I would make the opposite statement and then let it go and move forward.  Things I would like to see are development of offshore fishing reefs – things like that.  We could possibly purchase old boats, old train cars and sink them off the coast to develop natural fishing areas."

Brenda Faye McMillian, the third Democrat seeking a seat on the county board, says her time working for the Department of Social Services gives her a clear focus on the needs of seniors and people who are disabled. 

"I realized there was a disconnect in what was needed for seniors and disabled adults and what was actually available in Brunswick County."

Polls are open on Election Day from 6:30 AM until 7:30 PM. 

Rachel hosts and produces CoastLine, an award-winning hourlong conversation featuring artists, humanitarians, scholars, and innovators in North Carolina. The show airs Wednesdays at noon and Sundays at 2 pm on 91.3 FM WHQR Public Media. It's also available as a podcast; just search CoastLine WHQR. You can reach her at rachellh@whqr.org.