Newsflash–Greensboro might turn down Justice Dept. grant

Over the years of following local government, I’ve come to the conclusion that there not a federal grant out there local politicians don’t like. Heaven forbid they would turn their nose up at so-called “free money,” as they like to call it.

Bt the Rhino Times reports the Greensboro City Council is “likely” to turn down a $138,000 grant from the US Department of Justice. I probably don’t even need to tell you why, but here it is:

At the Tuesday, Jan. 7 meeting, three councilmembers – Sharon Hightower, Michelle Kennedy and Yvonne Johnson – said they would vote against accepting the grant money because they disagree with the actions of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) division of the Department of Homeland Security.

….Kennedy said that she was in favor of holding a public hearing, but she added, ”There is no scenario where I would have voted for the City of Greensboro to participate with ICE which in my opinion is the most ethically bankrupt federal agency that exists today.”

Crazy thing is—as Rhino editor John Hammer reports—“something about the grant” was approved at the council’s Dec. 17th meeting, and the council did not know they had voted for it until it was brought to their attention by a speaker from the floor. So when they thought it plain old “free money,” they were all for it.

One other thing–$138,000 is only Greensboro’s share of the larger $250,000 grant to be be divided among Gboro, High Point and Guilford County. Hammer reports “Greensboro is the lead agency for this federal grant,” so if Greensboro does turn down the $138,000 from the federal government, “it could affect the money going to High Point and the Sheriff’s Department.” Furthermore, Assistant City Manager Trey Davis “explained several times that the Greensboro Police Department did not collect information on the immigration status on people, so it didn’t have information to share with ICE.”

This is the city government we get when only 12 percent of the population turns out to vote.

Sam Hieb / Contributing Editor

Sam Hieb is freelance journalist from Greensboro, North Carolina. He is a contributing editor for Carolina Journal and for Piedmont Publius, a blog that focuses on political a...

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