CSX hub would lower poverty
Selma and Four Oaks are two of the poorest towns in Johnston County. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, both have median household incomes that are at or below the poverty level. And both have nearby sites that CSX has identified for a intermodal hub that could provide hundreds of jobs to local citizens, jobs that would pay well above the county’s average wage.
Other towns on the Interstate 95 corridor rank just ahead of Selma and Four Oaks in median household income and poverty. In fact, the six poorest towns in Johnston County are on I-95. These towns also have the highest number citizens on some type of government assistance.
I hope the good people in or near these towns who are affected by the locating of a CSX hub will consider what the financial result will mean for them and their families. The result will be good-paying jobs with staring salaries in the $25 per hour range. There will also be additional companies moving into the area, creating more good jobs.
Growth is what every community needs; otherwise it dies. Look at Eastern North Carolina today. Other than Greenville and Wilmington, most of the towns and counties have seen lower populations, lower income levels and higher poverty.
The economic impact will be tremendous for the I-95 corridor – better schools, greater recreation facilities and more small businesses.
A lot of young people who now leave Johnston County for better jobs will be able to stay here in the future.
Think about it.
These teachers have his admiration
I have been substituting for almost two years now, and I have met many fine teachers and a few not-so-good ones. But I am not going to dwell on the not-so-good ones, because everyone seems to want to do that. What I want to do is give a big shout-out to two I believe have gone above and beyond the call of duty. They are Tarsha Johnson and Abigale Buckholt of Selma Middle School.
Mrs. Johnson teaches exceptional children and runs REACH Our Communities, an after-school and summer program at the Harrison Center in Selma. Where this lady gets all of the energy to do this I do not know.
Mrs. Buckholt, or Mrs. B as we all call her, is one of the Life Skills teachers, and the love and patience she shows for the children under her care is unbelievable. I have worked with both women in the classroom on many occasions and am totally impressed by the way both handle the children under their care. Mrs. Buckholt also went out of her way to ensure the eighth-grade girls had nice gowns for their prom. I sat and watched her and another teacher sew straps on gowns because they were told all gowns had to have straps.
Now I know there are others who do just as much, and some might do more, but I have spent a lot of time with these two and thought they should be recognized.
We should not forget we do have many fine teachers in this district who are putting forth every effort to teach our children and grandchildren, and we should not forget them.
David G. Speckhardt