ELECTION 2020: Harris says he is the ‘common man’

Published 11:46 am Saturday, September 12, 2020

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There is one candidate running for Norwood Town Council who wants to follow in the footsteps of his father.

Tracy Harris, the son of former Norwood Assistant Police Chief Charles Harris, put his name into the list of five candidates looking for two at-large bids as the council shrinks to four members plus the mayor. Harris will run against incumbents Robbie Cohen, Wes Hartsell and James Lilly along with Darryl “Pork Chop” Gerald.

Harris’ father ran for mayor many years ago and did not win, but his son indicated he learned from his father, including the fact his father had a second job outside of working for the town’s police force.

Many citizens have communicated to Tracy concerns including the increased water bill rates, he said.

He suggests having a prorated amount for elderly citizens.

“You have one person living in a house,” he said. “Why is their water bill the same as a family of five?”

Other issues Harris is concerned with are the conditions of the side streets which he said “are in terrible disrepair.”

Harris also said Norwood needs more jobs and more places for locals to shop, harkening back to the days when those living in the “mill hill” areas could walk to five different grocery stores.

“(Store owners) knew what to buy and what to sell because of their clientele,” Harris said.

He added he would also like to see more jobs in the construction industry. He said he was “willing to work with anybody and everybody.”

Tracy described himself as being a common man.

“I’m just an old poor boy on a tractor…that people talk to,” he said. “I don’t own a Cadillac or a Lincoln Continental…the people need someone that they can actually talk to. I mean everybody.”

Harris said he believes nearly “90 percent of the population is scared to talk to any public official.”

He described himself as being old school but still “being young enough to go with the flow.”

Harris said he wants to be a town official from whom people will “get a straight answer.” He also said he wants to give people that “human touch” with their elected officials.

Norwood also needs to offer citizens more activities, as well as better sidewalks and better side service roads, including more paved roads, as well as having ditches cleaned out, he said.

Harris said Norwood had “the best fire department in North Carolina if not the United States.” He added he comes in every night to get a free blood-pressure test.

The town council and town hall should have a “completely open policy,” he added. He said water bills should be fair and wants people to have a better relationship with the town’s police department.

About Charles Curcio

Charles Curcio has served as the sports editor of the Stanly News & Press for more than 16 years and has written numerous news and feature storeis as well. He was awarded the NCHSAA Tim Stevens Media Representative of the Year and named CNHI Sports Editor of the Year in 2014. He has also won an award from Boone Newspapers, and has won four North Carolina Press Association awards.

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