The Rockingham County commissioners voted unanimously this week to ask the state to allow Rockingham County to place public notices on its own website instead of being forced by state law to buy ads in a paid circulation newspaper.

The county commissioners said that over 95 percent of the people in Rockingham County had access to the internet, which was far higher than the number that subscribe to the newspapers. The commissioners also noted it would save them about $28,000 a year.

The law recently passed by the state legislature allowing public notices to be placed on the county’s website, as well as in paid circulation newspapers, only applied to Guilford County. So our neighbor to the north liked what it saw and wants to join Guilford County in admitting that the way people get information has changed.

County budgets are tight and the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners supported the original bill to make the change to allow electronic notices statewide. It seems likely that other counties will also request the legislation. It will be an interesting fight to see how long the paid circulation newspaper lobby can keep its monopoly on public notices.

*****

Maybe I’m not as smart as most people when it comes to signs and directions, but I don’t have any trouble getting to the airport in Charlotte, Raleigh or St. Louis, Missouri – the three I go to most frequently. But I find the signage for the Greensboro airport utterly confusing. But it’s not as bad going as trying to come back. At one point you have a choice – Martinsville or Winston Salem. What about Greensboro? I don’t want to go to Martinsville or Winston-Salem. I want to get on Bryan Boulevard and go to Greensboro, but that isn’t a choice.

And what are all the signs around the airport for Martinsville about? Has Martinsville suddenly become a major transportation hub? Did Virginia pay North Carolina a whole bunch of money for advertising?

*****

It doesn’t matter to me where the News & Record prints its paper. We print the Rhino Times in Gastonia.

Before the advent of websites, I used to walk down the street at 3 a.m. and get a paper hot off the press, but I haven’t done that in years, so I won’t miss it.

What I will miss, though, is local news and sports in the morning paper because moving the printing of the N&R to Winston-Salem has apparently moved the deadlines up. It appears the new deadline is about 9:30 or 10 p.m., which means late meetings and late games aren’t going to make the morning newspaper.

Also, although I know all about the vagaries of printing on a web press, the papers I have been picking up out of my driveway since the printing switched don’t appear to be as clear as they were when they were printed in Greensboro. Maybe I’m just looking at them more carefully, but I hate to see the continued demise of our daily newspaper.

*****

The news that the Boy Scouts of America is going to start accepting girls is sad. I imagine it will mean the end of the Boy Scouts, an organization that was very important to me growing up. Young Person Scouts just won’t be the same.

 

Parisian Promenade at Bicentennial Garden