Countdown to Butner’s First Historic Election
November 3rd, 2009 opens a new chapter in Butner, North Carolina’s rich history. For the first time, the citizens of Butner will decide which candidate(s) are best suited to represent the community; be it environmental or cultural, economic growth or development the interest of the residents must come first and not the special interest. Just consider that since our incorporation, Butner residents have endured 5 water and sewer rate increases by SGWASA in roughly 18 months, despite what we were assured during the pre- incorporation public forums. The status quo can no longer be tolerated, narrow-mindedness on behalf of a town’s government will not and cannot provide the necessary quality of life for all citizens, we can have better leadership.
A bill passed by the North Carolina General Assembly, signed by former Gov. Mike Easley on July 27, 2007 incorporated Butner as a municipality effective November 1st 2007. With the Incorporation came the transfer of the Town of Butner’s operations from the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services to an appointed Mayor and Town Council which consisted of six council members. November 3rd 2009 changes everything, however it all depends on your vote.
Recently, two candidate forums were held for residents of Butner, Creedmoor and Stem to get to know their 2009 candidates, one was held in Creedmoor and the latest held in Butner, at the Butner-Stem Middle School. Many thanks goes to Butner Citizens Planning Ahead (BCPA) for sponsoring the Butner forum, held specifically for candidates running for town government seats in Butner. BCPA is an organization formed to advance community development and they work tirelessly each year to bring us our annual “Chicken Pickin”.
During the latest candidate forum, each candidate was allowed a three minute presentation, sadly public questions and comments were not accepted; instead citizens were encouraged to ask questions of the candidates after the forum, one on one. We think you need a little more information.
With that said, meet one of our recommendations for a “New” Butner Town Council, Dr. William (Bill) McKellar
Below is the transcript of Mr. McKellar’s presentation from the recent BCPA forum:
– I am Bill McKellar.
– I’d like to thank Citizens Planning Ahead AND Thank you for attending.
-Edie and I were the owners of Quality Drugs for 34 years.
– I am a pharmacist and a Human Rights member for the Murdoch Center.
-I attended UNC Pharmacy School and actively served on a student based committee that planned, developed and activated the UNC Campus Transit System for UNC and Chapel Hill.
– Some positions I have held since I’ve lived in Butner include:
- Six years on the Butner Advisory Board.
- Butner Civitan Club member and Officer
- Cub Scout Den Mom and Assist. CubMaster
- C.A. Dillon Community Advisory Board
- Member of the Murdoch Human Rights Committee since 1992, and Chairperson for 2 years.
-I was a member and Chair of the Bd. Of Directors of GROWTH, Inc., a federal RHI funded project establishing and building a community clinic in southern Granville County, which is now a part of Granville Medical Center. The Clinic was 1 of 2 sites in NC successful enough to build.
-One of many scholarships and projects we sponsored through Quality Drugs was a “Coats for Children” project at Butner-Stem Elem. School in 1995 providing 40 winter coats for children in need.
-I have taken a stand in preservation of the integrity and safety of Granville County’s environment by opposing the storage of low-level radioactive waste in Butner, the siting of the Hazardous Waste Incinerator, and the siting of the NBAF
-I was the chairperson for Granville Environmental Action Team which in 1993 won a National “Take pride in America” award and national recognition by the Dept. of Interior.
-I was a member and chair of the Butner Beautification Committee that with the leadership of J.V. Buchanan planned and built the Gazebo Park on Central Ave. We worked to decorate Central Ave for Christmas for the first time.
-Edie and I received the Exchange Club’s Book of Golden Deeds Award in 2000.
The goals and decisions we make as council members should be based on; 1) Common Sense 2) Wishes of the People 3) Expense to the taxpayers
-Also, I strongly feel that transparency is a key element of town government and management needed to establish trust between the Town and its citizens.
SOME OF MY GOALS ARE TO:
1. Keep taxes as low as possible through fiscal conservatism.
2. Establish new & lower water usage fees and tax rates for seniors over 65 years old.
3. Seek additional land for new homes.
4. Establish a volunteer co-ordinating effort.
5. To sustain a healthy food bank through our churches.
6. To finalize that community building.
7. Establish an adult day-care.
8. Finish facilities for youth sports.
9. Update recycling program.
10. Encourage residents to become involved with town government and to serve on committees.
-Being on committees and in organizations that have addressed numerous concerns and my exposure to the needs of the citizens opened my eyes to the importance of meeting those needs. I will both encourage and support others to become involved in community wellness, environmental concerns, and the economic & quality of life issues.
I would like your support in this election!
After the forum we had a couple of questions and Bill was glad to answer them all in-depth, here they are for your consideration.
BBS…Tell us a little bit about yourself?
WM… I have always been a N.C. resident growing up in Robeson, Wake and Bladen Counties. After graduating from Clarkton High School in 1965, I attended U.N.C. – Chapel Hill entering UNC’s School of Pharmacy. While at UNC, In 1968-1969, I served as an assistant residence advisor for Ehringhaus Dorm and was on a study committee of 3 students that planned, developed and activated the UNC Campus Transit System for UNC and Chapel Hill.
After graduation in 1970, I finished my internship in Greenville, NC. in June 1972 and moved back home to manage Clarkton’s only drug store. In December, 1974, my wife, Edie, purchased Quality Drugs in Butner. We retired from Quality Drugs on December 31, 2008. I am still a Registered Pharmacist. I continue to work toward a better, stronger community.
We still live in Butner spending time with our two grandchildren (Emma and Megan) and their parents (Sarah and Chris Oliver), taking care of our 10+ backyard wild cats and doing yardwork. Our son Ryan lives in Durham.
BBS…What in your record as a citizen or other experience demonstrates your ability to be effective on the Butner Town Council?
WM…As a citizen I have and will continue to work toward growth building a better, stronger, environmentally sound community. Positions I have held in Butner since moving there in 1974 include the:
- Butner Citizens Committee (3 years)
- Butner Advisory Council (6 years)
- Butner Advisory Council (3 years) Wife’s term
- Butner Civitan Club and Officer (4 years)
- Cub Scout Den “Mom” and CubMaster (3 years)
- C.A. Dillon Community Advisory Committee (15 years)
- Murdoch Center Human Rights Committee since 1992 and Chairperson for 2 years
- Member and Chairman of Board of Directors of GROWTH, Inc. a federally funded project establishing and building a community clinic in southern Granville County.
- Sponsor for “Coats for children” project at Butner Stem Elementary School In 1995, providing 40 coats for children who needed them.
- Chairman of Granville Environmental Action Team who won a 1993 Take Pride in America Award and The Department of the Interior recognition for establishing Butner’s Gr.E.A.T. recycle program and developing plastic recycling programs with Granville County, presenting recycling programs in southern Granville County School, establishing “Waste Watch” monetary awards to people who reported illegal dumping in Granville County where prosecution resulted, and doing roadside cleanup for 12 years.
- Member of Butner Beautification Committee (1988-1993) that with the help of J.V. Buchanan planned and built the Gazebo Park on Central Ave. and decorated Central Ave for Christmas for the first time.
- Opposed the storage of low-level radioactive waste in Butner in 1979.
- Opposed the siting of a hazardous waster incinerator at both the Oxford and Butner locations in 1990., by serving on the Site Review Committee.
- Opposed the siting of the National Bio-Agro Defense Facility in Butner in 2007 and 2008 as spokesperson for Granville Non-violent Action Team (GNAT)
- Recipients of the South Granville Exchange Club Book of Golden Deeds Award with Edie in 2000.
- Board Member of Union National Bank (1980-1985)
- Butner-Stem P.T.O. President (1985)
BBS… That’s an impressive record,what else would you like the voter to know about you?
WM…Having been on committees and clubs that have addressed a lot of concerns, I feel that the exposure to the needs of the citizen opened my eyes to address those needs. I will both encourage and support others to become involved in community wellness, environmental concerns, economic and quality of life issues. If I am elected or not, I will continue to do what I like to do, “Create a better environment for my children and grandchildren.”
We clearly endorse and support Bill McKellar for Butner Town Council. Look at how hard he has worked for the community as a citizen, one can only imagine what he can do as a Councilmember, so vote for a better Butner not the status quo of the past.