02LSF stackedHope Mills elected officials cannot seem to get over their personal and political bickering long enough to do their job of serving the residents of Hope Mills. Mayor pro tem Mike Mitchell is blinded by pettiness, but it is commissioner Jesse Bellflowers, former commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, who totally self-destructed when he turned his back on suffering military veterans, the Lone Survivor Foundation and the taxpaying residents of Hope Mills. Bellflowers disgraced the honor of all U.S. military veterans, living and deceased. So much for “No man left behind.” Bellflowers left thousands behind with his flip-flopping political antics. He single-handedly achieved an unprecedented trifecta of hypocrisy.

It’s embarrassing. 

This week, I’m yielding my space to a patriot and veteran – the honorable Don Talbot. His open letter to veterans and the community pretty much sums up the meltdown in Hope Mills. His message speaks volumes to the way Hope Mills residents and veterans alike feel about what’s going on. 

Both Don and I welcome your comments and input. Thank you for reading Up & Coming Weekly.

– Bill Bowman

To those following the saga of the Hope Mills Commissioners dealing with the offer from Lone Survivor Foundation, there are some discouraging details emerging from the meetings. 

We can start with Commissioner Bellflowers, who is a military veteran. He made the motion to revisit the proposal, and then voted against his own motion, thus postponing all action on the proposals until after a report is rendered from the Town of Hope Mills Parks & Recreation Department consultant. 

Pat Edwards was the only commissioner who voted to keep the conversation about the plans for Lake Bed #2 going. This is where it gets really interesting because information has it Mayor pro tem Mitchell had a report from the consultant stating that they (the consultant) do not recommend the use of Lake bed #2 for the Parks & Recreation department.

People need to learn the date of the information transmittal because if Mitchell withheld that report from the commissioners, then their vote to delay the proposal until fall is compromised. 

I call on the mayor and city manager of Hope Mills to investigate the timeline of the consultant’s report and when Mitchell received it.

 As The Fayetteville Observer stated in an opinion column recently, “it appears the board was too distracted by political squabbling to see the possibilities. That may turn into a loss for the town and for the veterans that Lone Survivor could serve.”

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