Beaufort County Commissioner Stan Deatherage Discusses the Saga of the Beaufort County Jail | Eastern North Carolina Now | The issue of spending many millions of taxpayer dollars to build a new Beaufort County jail is again raising its head.

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    Publisher's Note: This was originally sent as an email to all Republicans (Paid for by the Committee to Elect Stan Deatherage) within the structure of the campaign to re-elect Beaufort County Commissioner Stan Deatherage, and now appears here as news and information on Eastern NC NOW.

Commissioner Stan Deatherage

The Strong Voice for the Taxpayer

Dear Fellow Republican,

    The issue of spending many millions of taxpayer dollars to build a new Beaufort County jail is again raising its head. This has been a pet project of liberal Democrat commissioner Jerry Langley for many years.

    The two questions that need to be answered are: 1) do we really need a big new jail?, and 2) can we afford it?

    Our present jail was thoroughly renovated two years ago at a cost of $2 million. Since its renovation, it has passed two state inspections with flying colors, 100% in compliance. It is certified for occupancy by 87 inmates but actual head counts of prisoners have been running at about 50. The overall population of Beaufort County is declining, not growing according to the federal census.

    Based on the facts, there is no demonstrated need for an expensive new jail. Borrowing money to build one at a time we are entering a recession and our sales tax revenues will be falling would be ill advised. It would create a big risk of property tax increases during a recession.

    To try to bridge the divide among commissioners on this issue, I proposed using $2 million of the federal Covid money given to the county to renovate the western part of the courthouse basement as additional jail space. It is now used as storage. This would have helped with juveniles and female inmates. It also would not have required any county borrowing.

    Unfortunately the "new jail" faction on the county commission has taken this and added another $13 million of borrowed money to add a new 2 story addition in the parking lot behind the court house. The cost of their project will likely climb even more than that.

    Two of my opponents this election year are helping promote this unnecessary big spending for an unneeded jail. Ed Booth is a liberal Democrat who almost always votes in lockstep with Langley. He is a big supporter of Langley's new jail. Frankie Waters in his first campaign pledged opposition to the new jail and signed a pledge to that effect to the Stop the Jail Committee. But then Waters wanted to form a governing coalition with Langley, so he flip-flopped on his pledged opposition to the jail.

    My position has been consistent since this issue first came up a number of years ago. I will support building only what it is shown that we actually need and can afford, I will only support borrowing money for it that is approved by county voters in a bond referendum.

    Several years ago, the commission tried to do an end run around the voters and a bond referendum by seeking to borrow money for a new jail directly from a lender. That was shot down, but I fear some on the commission may try that stunt again. Last year, I offered a resolution to limit county borrowing for major spending to that which the county voters approve in a bond referendum. That resolution failed to pass the commission, with my opponent Ed Booth, and other Center-Left Coalition members voting against it.

    The saga of Langley's crusade for a new jail is a microcosm of the differences in taxing and spending philosophies among the various commissioners. I have always been and always will be a fiscal conservative, and voters have been able to count on that during my past service. They can continue to count on it in the future.

    I humbly ask for your vote and support so that I can continue standing up for our taxpayers on the Beaufort County Commission.

    Please visit my website at, or email me at to discuss any issue. If you would like to offer support, especially by volunteering or placement of a yard sign, please contact me as well.


Should Beaufort County's Commissioners fund more projects, while adding to the county government work force, or, should these servants to the People work to cut wasteful spending, and give the taxpayers of Beaufort County a break on taxes, possibly starting a new purpose for their existence?
  Yes, please spend more; so much needs to be done in Beaufort County, and we need more government employees doing it.
  No, please work to be frugal; more mindful that this is the public's money, and return to taxpayers what is not absolutely needed.
  Why should I pay attention to stuff?
679 total vote(s)     What's your Opinion?

Inarguably, the policies of the Democrats in congress and Joe Biden as the Executive is plunging the United States into a recession, if we are not already there; a recession that was completely avoidable. Will abrupt changes in policies occur in time?
  Yes, the Democrats have a bold plan, yet to be revealed, to save us.
  No, there will have to be a complete undoing of the damage done by these Democrats.
  I can't do simple math, so how am I to understand the concept of basic economics.
1,181 total vote(s)     What's your Opinion?

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