Guilford County Commissioners Mary Beth Murphy, Frankie Jones and Chairman of the Board of Commissioners Skip Alston began a Wednesday, March 15 Town Hall-style meeting in Sedalia by asking the people in the audience to let them hear any concerns about how the board was running the county.

The trio of commissioners certainly got what they asked for.

The event started with a 6 p.m. reception at the Sedalia Town Hall, which isn’t a large meeting space and was filled with about two dozen audience members along with county staff and commissioners.

At 6:30 p.m. the three commissioners opened the meeting with comments.  That was followed by county staff informing the attendees about the county’s budget practices as well as informing them about the services that the county does and does not provide.

During the second half of the one-hour meeting, residents got to speak their minds and some spoke on various issues such as the quality of schools in the county, the need for more mental health services and the increase in property taxes that resulted from the countywide revaluation of property last year.

“My tax bill went up 30 percent,” one woman complained, referring to the fact that, even though the Board of Commissioners didn’t increase the tax rate in 2022, the board also did not vote to adjust the rate down to a revenue neutral level after revaluation.

Former Guilford County Commissioner Alan Branson spoke about several issues including the problem of crack houses operating in the county and the growing response times of the Guilford County Sheriff’s Department..

Branson said that Sheriff’s Department response times were critical because, in certain cases, Emergency Services could not respond before law enforcement made the environment safe.