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City hopes to avoid tax hike

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  PHIL PERRY Staff Writer   During discussions at the City of Lincolnton’s annual budget retreat on Feb. 27, officials were faced with the task of finding solutions to issues that could negatively affect the 2015-16 city budget. While the budget will not be completed until late May or early…

First Art Crawl artist studio tour on tap for Saturday

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      PHIL PERRY Staff Writer   The first Artist Studio Tour will kick off Saturday, following this evening’s Art Crawl and providing an opportunity for a self-guided tour of artist studios in Lincoln County. The tour gives art lovers and collectors the opportunity to purchase art and discuss…

Primary schedule could cost county

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  ADAM LAWSON Staff Writer In 2013, North Carolina made national headlines for passing an elections overhaul that, among other things, required state-issued photo IDs to cast ballots, reduced the early voting period and ended same-day registration during early voting. But a less visible part of North Carolina House Bill…

Deputies: Night manager stole from restaurant

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    Staff report   Lincoln County deputies have arrested three men on charges related to a break-in and larceny at a Denver restaurant in July 2014, including a former manager. The owner of the Jersey Mike’s on Highway 73 reported on July 30 that there was a break-in at…

Out Under the Stars: Area homeless share their stories

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    PHIL PERRY Staff Writer   Lincoln County organizations like Hesed House of Hope, Christian Ministry and Blanket the Homeless have collectively worked to provide resources and hope to the homeless community within the county. Blanket the Homeless, an organization formed by members of Oak Grove Baptist Church in…

A Matter of Principals: St. James duo runs school for a day

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  PHIL PERRY Staff Writer   As an adult, the dream of running the company that employs you may be something that crosses your mind from time to time. Perhaps the policies that you would implement would make a difference in company culture and, ultimately, the bottom line. While few…

Homeless camps inspire county youth, churches

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‘Blanket the Homeless’ distributes food, supplies to campers PHIL PERRY Staff Writer For some residents of Lincoln County, the act of crawling into a bed with a blanket, four walls and a roof has become mundane, cloying and, perhaps, routine. You work hard, you play hard and then you lay…

Man pleads guilty to stealing $11 million

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Staff report An Iron Station man has pleaded guilty to embezzling $11 million from clients of his third-party payroll company. James Staz, 44, pleaded guilty to wire fraud, money laundering and tax evasion in federal court in Charlotte on Thursday. Staz ran Employee Services.Net, Inc. (ESN) with his father, William…

McHenry: Local manufacturing efforts ‘incredible’

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ADAM LAWSON Staff Writer Rep. Patrick McHenry visited Lincolnton on Friday, making a stop at Sea Express America Corp before arriving at the shell building at Lincoln County’s Industrial Park later in the afternoon. McHenry (R, NC-10), the chief deputy whip in the House of Representatives, arrived with Joe Bost,…

Art Crawl 2015 Featured Artist: Jerry Bartusch

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PHIL PERRY Staff Writer Jerry Bartusch has worked with his hands most of his life. He has a firm, blue-collar handshake and an infectious laugh that complements a winsome sense of humor. Bartusch, 65, retired in January 2006 after a career as a sheet metal worker in Chicago. Together, he…