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Carl Ford: Heading to Raleigh

SALISBURY — When Carl Ford heard a concern he couldn’t do anything about as county commissioner, he’d often encourage people to take it to Raleigh.

But starting this year, he’ll be on the other side of the state’s decisions. As a state representative, Ford will have a say in the requirements placed on local governments and the amount of money that goes to their schools.

Ford, 55, chose not to seek re-election as county commissioner in order to run for N.C. House District 76. Rep. Fred Steen vacated that seat when he ran unsuccessfully for the 8th Congressional district.

Ford will represent southeastern Rowan and northeastern Cabarrus County in the General Assembly. He’ll join a Republican majority and work under the leadership of a new Republican governor, Pat McCrory.

— Karissa Minn

Reaction to being named? “I don’t know why I’m one of the 10 to watch.”

Who will you watch in 2013? Locally, the people of Rowan County. He’ll be representing Cabarrus, too, but Rowan’s people have caught his attention with their involvement in issues of public prayer, the school system central office and the recent election.

On a national scale, his new Congressman Richard Hudson.

Your biggest challenge in 2013? “I think it will be learning on the fly, but I’ll be doing it with a lot of others, because it’s a big, big freshman class. It’s going to be a learning experience. It’s not the same when you’re in there with 120 people as opposed to five people at a commissioners’ meeting.”

Your biggest hope for 2013? “Getting the economy turned around in North Carolina. That has a lot to do with getting restrictions and regulations off businesses, and fees and taxes.”

Dream date? “Going out with my wife — I don’t get to do that enough, I don’t think,” he said. “We’ve been to the Biltmore House several times, and she’s always wanted to see the Christmas lights there, but we’ve never done it.”

Favorite TV show? “Duck Dynasty. It’s on A&E. A family in Louisiana owns company makes expensive duck calls. They call themselves ‘redneck millionaires.’ … You can watch the show with your family. It has life lessons, and it’s hilarious too.’”

Who should play you in a movie? Sean Connery.

Your last meal? The spaghetti his wife makes or a ribeye steak.

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