Benson breaks ground on Hampton Inn hotel
Ground has been broken on the site of Benson’s Hampton Inn hotel, set to open this fall.
The Leath Company and the town broke ground on the $9.2 million project Jan. 26 after a reception at Char-Grill that drew more more than 70 people, according to a news release from the town.
The hotel, on South Walton Avenue near Interstate 95, will offer 89 rooms and a lower-level conference space. Two pieces of land have been set aside near the hotel for restaurants.
“The Town of Benson is excited and proud to announce the arrival of Hampton Inn to our community,” said Mayor William W. Massengill Jr. “The demand for additional hotel room availability in Benson is extremely high. The Leath Company’s project has helped to kick-start developmental growth along Interstate 95 at Exit 79. We are definitely a community on the ‘grow.’ ”
Peepholes found in men’s bathrooms at I-40
N.C. Department of Transportation employees found peepholes drilled into men’s bathrooms at rest stations along Interstate 40 in Johnston County.
DOT employees reported the peepholes to the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office on Monday, sheriff’s Capt. Jeff Caldwell said. Caldwell said the holes were in the walls of the bathroom stalls.
The holes were in men’s bathrooms inside the rest stations on the eastbound and westbound sides of I-40 at mile marker 324 near Benson, Caldwell said. No damage or peepholes were found in the women’s bathrooms.
An investigation is ongoing.
Another search fails to find missing man
In Benson, the latest search for Cole Thomas failed to find the Florida man, who’s been missing since Nov. 25.
In all, 30 law enforcement officers took part in a ground and air search on Jan. 19. They came from the Benson Police Department, the State Bureau of Investigation, the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office, Harnett Count Sheriff’s Office and the Wilson’s Mills Police Department.
“While Cole Thomas was not located today, a number of areas were eliminated from consideration, and additional searches are planned,” said Benson Police Chief Kenneth Edwards. “Our commitment remains to find Cole Thomas and to reunite him with his family and friends.
Police ask anyone with information about Thomas to call them 919-894-2091.
Rouzer on Natural Resources Committee
U.S. Rep. David Rouzer, who represents Johnston County in Congress, has been named to the House Committee on Natural Resources.
“Our natural resources are a major attribute to the quality of life in our state and throughout the nation,” Rouzer said. “North Carolina is home to many national parks and forests, and our beaches and waterways are precious resources as well. It is an honor to have the opportunity to represent North Carolina on this important committee, and I look forward to advocating for southeastern North Carolina in this additional capacity.”
The House Committee on Natural Resources considers legislation regarding American energy production, mineral lands and mining, fisheries and wildlife, public lands, oceans, Native Americans, irrigation and reclamation.
Rouzer also serves on the Committee on Agriculture and Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.