LETTER TO THE EDITOR: How should we look at police presence on Tillery?

Published 4:28 pm Friday, July 10, 2020

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Do we really need a Norwood Police boat on Lake Tillery?

There was an agenda item in the July Norwood town meeting proposing that the Norwood Police Department purchase a boat and start patrolling Lake Tillery. (See story, https://www.thesnaponline.com/2020/07/07/norwood-town-council-considers-police-presence-on-lake-tillery/)

First of all, NC Wildlife has jurisdiction on Lake Tillery and was not at the meeting. The Stanly County Sheriff’s Office also has jurisdiction on the lake and was present at the meeting.

The sheriff stated that they have a boat on Badin Lake, and also said that 95 percent of the problems were on Lake Tillery, but did not offer to move the boat from Badin Lake to Lake Tillery where it is needed more.

Our taxes already pay for the county sheriff’s and NC Wildlife’s presence on Lake Tillery, but apparently it’s not there as much as some residents would want.

Addressing the resident’s concerns, the Norwood police chief stated that he could purchase a boat to suit their needs for about $10,000. The mayor of Norwood stated that the town does not have any funding for such a boat, not mentioning the additional cost to operate, maintain and pay to staff it with officers.

Why reinvent the wheel when the NC Wildlife and sheriff have the jurisdiction and equipment to do the job? They are the departments that should be approached and asked to step up their presence on the lake if requested.

If the Town of Norwood approves this acquisition and its ongoing operational costs, who is going to pay for this if there is no funding available?

Every single taxpayer in Norwood shouldn’t have to.

To be fair, all the people who live on the water have to pay a lot more in taxes because their home is on a lake and for no other reason.

As an example, one councilman stated that he lives on the lake and pays $250 a week in taxes and only gets police protection on the land side of his property.

Having said that, where is all that extra tax money going? They are being taxed for police protection and only getting half of what they are paying for.

If the Town of Norwood agrees to go ahead with this endeavor, a portion of the premium taxes that the residents pay to live on the water within the corporate limits of Norwood should be reallocated to fund this and not every Norwood resident.

Please contact the Norwood mayor and council members prior to the meeting on Aug. 3 and give them your opinion on how to approach increasing the police presence on Lake Tillery.

Contact the Stanly County Sheriff’s Office and the NC Wildlife Office and express your concerns over their presence on the lake if you feel it is not adequate.

John Smith