N’hampton Board heads ‘east’

Published 10:53 am Thursday, March 19, 2009

JACKSON — This is your chance.

The west side of Northampton County had its chance recently to interact with their county representatives, now the Board of Commissioners is planning to hold a public forum on the east side of the county.

At their recent meeting, County Manager Wayne Jenkins spoke of future plans for a forum to be held at 6 p.m. on April 7 in the auditorium of Rich Square Creecy Elementary School.

In a later interview, Jenkins said the forum is an open invitation to each citizen in the county and is a good opportunity for citizens to get their questions about county government answered.

Jenkins explained this is the second public forum of its kind held recently in the county. Last month, the commissioners held a public forum at the Lake Gaston Community Center on the western end of the county, one which drew approximately 125 people.

The forum will fulfill a goal for the commissioners who expressed a desire to have more dialogue with their constituents.

At the forum a brief general county government overview will be given, including general budget information. The meeting will then open up to the commissioners taking written questions pre-submitted by the public.

Jenkins said forms for those pre-submitted questions are available at his office in Jackson. Additionally, the forms can be emailed or delivered through the mail upon request by interested citizens.

Jenkins said the question forms are also available to civic groups who wish to promote the public meeting.

Though the board will be prepared in answering the public’s questions, Jenkins said it is tough to get ready for a forum that will be taking general questions as the topics for conversation cover a wide range. He said because of those broad topics, not all questions may have an immediate answer.

Jenkins urged the public to participate in the forum.

“We encourage citizens to come out to the forum,” he said. “It’s a good opportunity for our citizens to learn how their tax dollars are spent, an opportunity to learn about services offered…it’s an open, healthy exchange between citizens and the commissioners.”