An opportunity for county

Published 7:46 pm Thursday, February 15, 2018


So far this filing period, three Beaufort County residents have submitted the necessary documents so they can run for seats in the North Carolina General Assembly.

Keith Kidwell, a Republican, and Jerry Langley, a Democrat, want to represent District 79 in the N.C. House of Representatives. The district, which includes all of Beaufort County and the northern part of Craven County, is a result of redistricting. It has no incumbent.

C. “Chuck” Early Jr., a Republican, wants to represent District 3 in the state Senate. Redistricting changed the configuration of District 3 so it now includes all of Beaufort County, which used to be in District 1, now represented by Sen. Bill Cook, a Republican and Beaufort County resident who is not seeking re-election. The new District 3 also includes Martin, Bertie, Warren, Vance and Northampton counties. The previous District 3 included Bertie, Chowan, Edgecombe, Hertford, Martin, Tyrrell and Washington counties.

Erica D. Smith is the incumbent representing District 3, which leans Democratic. Unseating Smith could prove difficult.

Because Beaufort County makes up the bulk of House District 79, there’s a good chance a Beaufort County resident will speak for the county in the state House. Part of Beaufort County used to be in House District 6 and the remainder of the county used to be in House District 3. Republican Beverly Boswell from Dare County represents District 6. Republican Michael Speciale from Craven County represents District 3. Before Boswell, Paul Tine, a Dare County resident, represented District 6.

Arthur Williams was the last Beaufort County resident to represent Beaufort County in the state House.

It’s time again for a Beaufort County resident to represent the county and its interests in the state House. And if another Beaufort County resident goes to the General Assembly as the senator for state Senate District 3, so much the better. The more voices Beaufort County has in Raleigh, the better the county should fare in getting its needs met.