Slim vote favors commissioners’ portraits

By: W. Curt Vincent -

ELIZABETHTOWN — In what amounted to a photo finish, the Bladen County Board of Commissioners voted Monday to have their mug shots taken, matted, framed and hung in county facilities at an initial cost of $1,450.

According to County Manager Greg Martin, who researched the costs associated with the recommendation made by Commissioner Michael Cogdell two months ago, there would be a one-time cost of about $750 for the matting and framing. The sitting fee would be $75 per person and the photos would cost another $50 per person.

Chairman Charles Ray Peterson told the board he thought the cost bordered on frivolous, “especially given how we are wrestling with a very tight budget.”

But Cogdell went ahead and made the motion to spend the money and Commissioner Arthur Bullock seconded the motion — and it passed by a 5-4 margin.

When the vote was made verbally, there were enough votes on both sides that Peterson asked for a show of hands — and Commissioners Cogdell, Bullock, Ophelia Munn-Going, Ray Britt and Russell Priest voted in favor; Commissioners Peterson, Ashley Trivette, David Gooden and Daniel Dowless voted against the motion.

W. Curt Vincent can be reached by calling 910-862-4163.

W. Curt Vincent