Rep. Murphy visits Aurora, shares plan for rural areas

Published 12:53 pm Friday, January 20, 2023

U.S. Representative Dr. Greg Murphy visited Aurora on Thursday, Jan. 19 to host a roundtable discussion with a large group of town leaders and business owners about how he can best address their needs and concerns. Rep. Keith Kidwell and Beaufort County Sheriff Scott Hammonds were also in attendance. 

Murphy shared with audience members information about initiatives his office is working to fulfill. 

One of which is to create a position in Washington, D.C. “that assists smaller communities with grants,” Murphy told the Daily News. This position will direct smaller communities to grants they can obtain. “This is where smaller communities oftentimes don’t have the resources to get that so we’re going to try to establish that in D.C.,” Murphy continued to explain. He said he’s trying to hire someone this week.

“Aurora is just on the cusp of a real surge of economic development and just some exciting things of what the good people of the town are doing,” Murphy told the Daily News. 

Mayor of Aurora, Clif Williams, spoke with the Daily News after the roundtable discussion. According to Williams, Aurora has several major projects in the works that are anticipated to come to fruition in the near future. 

The first project is building an industrial park which will bring in commerce and jobs. Williams said he will have an announcement soon with details about an industrial park that may be built in Aurora. 

The second project is bringing a grocery store to town. Aurora lost its only grocery store more than seven years ago creating a food desert in the area. Williams said the industrial park is the top priority because it can help bring in more businesses like a grocery store. 

“The industrial park is a top priority, get that going, create commerce then it’s going to be easier to get somebody to come in here,” Williams said. 

In addition to completing those projects, Williams said Aurora is working toward offering amenities similar to the City of Washington; however, they are going to manage future growth in an effort to preserve the charm of a small town. “We love the atmosphere here and the people we have,” Williams said. 

Williams enjoys visiting Washington, Belhaven and eating dinner then going for ice cream in Bath. He would like for Aurora to be able to “reciprocate” in what it can offer residents visiting from other towns. 

“We want Aurora to be a place that people from Bath and Washington, Belhaven want to come to, because we go to these places to visit. We can all just enjoy seeing each part of the county and give everybody something to do – winter or summer,” Williams said.