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Commentary: Kannapolis has last say on parade

By Richard Anderson
Special to the Post
On Aug 10, Kannapolis City Council voted 4-3 to change the Christmas Parade organizer from Cabarrus Events Association to Smith Family Baseball (owners of the Kannapolis Intimidators). Mayor Bob Misenheimer, Mayor Pro-tem Randy Cauthen and council members Anderson and Ken Geathers voted for the motion; Gene McCombs, Roger Haas and Darrell Hinnant voted against it. I was shocked the vote was not unanimous.
John Howard, vice president of Cabarrus Events Association, stated in the Post, “the city of Kannapolis does not have the authority to give it to someone else!” Excuse me, but the buck stops with Kannapolis City Council and not the Chamber of Commerce that created the Cabarrus Events Association.
On Aug. 11, Cabarrus Events Association wrote a letter addressed to “Kannapolis Christmas Parade Participants.” They continue to complain and gripe about being dropped. They listed the phone number of each council member who voted against them as the organizer of the parade and requested support. Judging from every phone call and comment I have received, the business community is excited about the change and cannot wait.
I am certain my fellow council members voted for change based on facts, as I did.1. Safety: Nighttime parades are more dangerous for our citizens than daytime parades! Sooner or later, some- one could be seriously injured, even killed, in the dark. What a tragedy that would be.2. Cost factor: Figures are from the City Finance Department and include Cabarrus Events Association assisting with Village Fest:
– Year 2008: $10,000 + $700 for float rental
– Year 2007 ń $10,000
– Year 2006 ń $10,000 + $700 for float rental
– Year 2005 ń $10,000
During budget talks, the Events Association requested $7,000 for the parade; that was reduced to $5,000.
3. Kannapolis Intimidators offered to organize the parade for free and turn over any profits to the city to award to a nonprofit organization.
Citizens of Kannapolis, you be the judge! I feel we made the correct decision.
– – –
Anderson is a member of Kannapolis City Council.

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