Letters to the editor — Monday (9-5-2016)

Published 12:50 am Monday, September 5, 2016

A ‘Hi-Lite’ memory from WSTP radio

I was saddened to read about the “death” of WSTP, which played such an important part in Rowan County’s history and want to share my experiences there with your readers.

When I was a sophomore or junior at East Rowan High School, I went to the office of Tom Harrell, the owner of WSTP, and suggested that a Saturday morning radio program featuring the five high schools in Rowan County would be a good idea.  I suggested to him that I would like to be the moderator/organizer for the program.

While I don’t remember how many times I talked with Tom about my idea, it took a while to convince him! In addition to having a student from North, South, East, West, and Boyden (before the name was changed to Salisbury), we would be playing rock and roll music, but that was not a part of the programming at WSTP. I remember that the records were our “pay.”

Wish I could remember who represented each school on the program, but I do know that Dr. Judy Grissom, former superintendent of Rowan-Salisbury Schools, was the North Rowan High reporter.  We have maintained our friendship, which began on the radio.

The program was named “High School Hi-Lites” and aired live in the studio on Saturday mornings for an hour.  I also recall that we moved the program to Oestreichers  department store in downtown Salisbury for a period of time. That was fun!

Thanks to Tom Harrell for giving us the opportunity to be on the radio when we were in high school.  I list radio announcer as one of my previous jobs on my resume!

 — Phil Kirk


Fibrant’s debt

The recent announcement by the City of Salisbury stated that it had procured a lower rate of financing for Fibrant that would “save” the city $400,000 per year in interest cost.

In reality the $10,000 per day loss for the Fibrant boondoggle is now roughly a $9,000 per day loss. That’s still a $3,285,000 loss per year.

If we were going to incur that kind of debt, wouldn’t it have been wonderful if it had been spent on our police department and our schools?

Real leadership would recognize that Fibrant is not going to get better; it is just going to get worse.

Salisbury will not be able to find any company to take over this massive debt and buy Fibrant. Also, they cannot walk away from it without ruining the city’s credit rating.

The only solution appears to be to shut down Fibrant, admit the huge mistake that was made, and pay the debt off over time.

— J.R. Montgomery