November 28, 2011
Dear Friends,

I am sorry I haven’t written to you lately.  I guess I have been busy trying to get my creative juices flowing and have not felt a pressing need to make a point or provide an update of the town’s business.  The advent of the Thanksgiving holiday, however, got me to thinking about all the things I am thankful for.  I am sure that all of you as well as me are thankful for things like health, family, freedom and faith.  We are often not willing to acknowledge that somewhere there is someone who is less fortunate or something that is less desirable than the situations we face every day.  I am reminded of the Declaration of Independence’s phrase that all of you are familiar with.  To paraphrase, it is the one that states we are granted certain unalienable rights, among those are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  I believe that the word pursuit in that phrase is a key word.   The dictionary defines it as the “act of chasing after something”; the “act of striving for something “; a “hobby”.   I am certainly thankful that I live in a town where the majority of the citizens believe we are striving to make improvements in its appearance, infrastructure, safety, and fiscal soundness.  I am thankful that 307 citizens decided to exercise their constitutional right to vote, so I know they are striving to make Chadbourn a better place.  I am thankful that I live in a town with more positives than negatives and serve on a board with good citizens that understand it is better to have a glass that is half full than half empty.   Finally, I am thankful that my fellow board members consider serving the citizens as an elected official extremely important and not a hobby to be pursued with a leisurely attitude.   I certainly am grateful that many of you feel as I do and I promise that I, along with the board, will do all we can to make Chadbourn a place you can be proud to call home.

 We will be bidding several projects in the coming weeks and months.  The Smith Street sewer replacement project has already been awarded and I expect the work to begin in a couple of weeks.  This project will replace a section of sewer line on Smith Street and was made possible largely by unused funds from a previous grant.  We were given permission by the state to use these funds and as such we will only be using a small amount of additional funds from the town.  We are also in the final stages before bidding on the radio read meters for all of the present water accounts.  This was made possible by a grant from the Rural Center and will require a match from the town of 20 percent.  Most of the meters in town are over 10 years old and as such have a reduced ability to read accurately.  This will eliminate the assumption that is being circulated; “Are they reading my meter?”  All meters will be read by radio signal in a fraction of the time it was taking before.  The town of Lake Waccamaw has the radio read meters and they are very well satisfied with the results.  Finally, we are in the process of replacing the water lines on Joyner Street because of the water quality issues that many of its residents are experiencing.  There are numerous other areas that are in need of water and sewer improvements and we will be addressing those concerns on a critical needs basis or as grant funds become available.
We are welcoming a new member to the board and are losing a very conscientious and tenacious member of the board.  Congratulations to new Councilman Edwin Roberts.  I am sure you will be conscientious and pragmatic in your approach to solving the myriad of issues that are besetting the town.  I wish to thank outgoing Councilman Donald Ray Bass for being a valued member of the board and being willing to do what he could to make Chadbourn a better place to live. 

Remember to thank our troops and veterans for their sacrifices.   Those sacrifices enable all of us to pursue happiness whether we find it or not.