ASHEVILLE – Earlier this week, Buncombe County Representative Tim Moffitt reacted to Asheville City Council’s decision to put a non-binding water referendum on the November ballot and posted a shocking message to the citizens of Buncombe County from his blog. His message? The state can use its virtually unlimited power to dissolve local government.
“The State does have the authority, but that doesn’t mean they should use it,” said Jane Whilden, Moffitt’s opponent in Buncombe County District 116. “Mr. Moffitt has worked closely with Henderson County and Raleigh politicians to poach our community assets and, in the case of the local water system, put it at risk for privatization. I think city water ratepayers should have the right to voice their opinion about this important issue.”
Moffitt’s post highlighted this text from the N.C. School of Government:
“Thus, if the General Assembly wants to create a city, county, or other local governmental unit, it is free to do so. If it wishes to abolish a local government, or to merge it with another, or to impose particular obligations on it, it has almost unlimited power to do as it chooses. In sum, North Carolina is not a ‘home rule’ state, as that term is commonly understood. Its local governments exist by legislative benevolence, not by constitutional mandate.”
“Mr. Moffitt’s threat to use his power to dissolve local government is extremely irresponsible. I think our legislature needs to be focused on what concerns our citizens, like creating jobs and improving education, not petty posturing.”
Jane Whilden is running for N.C. State House in District 116. Visit www.janeforstatehouse.com for more information about Jane and her campaign.