Cameron talks new government system

The Town of Cameron board members discussed replacing its form of government at the Sept. 26 meeting with a commissioner and town manager form before a new mayor is elected. Cameron’s current government system is mayor-commissioners.

Thasherra “Tash” Nichols-McDuffie is running for mayor. Her website lists her interests as a mother, social activist, philanthropist, and patriot.

According to board member Kane Parsons, the write-in mayoral candidate is Jane Etheridge. She is a longtime Cameron resident.

“We need a town manager and board of commissioners [system] to keep continuity when there is a transition of a new mayor. It would be best for the town,” member Tonya Nicely said about making town clerk Wendy Cummings the town manager.

Mayor Pro Tempore Joey Frutchey said the board would decide the town manager’s authorities and duties.

“It could streamline some things,” Frutchey said.

“We have put too much on the town clerk. We don’t have a cop. So why not hire a part-time clerk? Our path is growth, so a second person is what we’re looking at,” Parsons said.

The board agreed that a part-time clerk is a solution.

Ret. U.S. Army Captain and resident of Cameron since January, Elizabeth Nhambure, said a change in government “changes the antiquated mindset” of the town of approximately 460.

According to Nhambure’s March interview with Sandhills Sentinel, she moved to Cameron for the small-town Mayberry atmosphere.

In a phone conversation on Sept. 26 with Sandhills Sentinel, Nhambure said she is working on turning her Victorian-era home into a bed-and-breakfast inn.

The board agreed to research the duties and continue a discussion with the town accountant on a salary for the town manager.

“Get us something in writing,” Frutchey said about making a decision at the October meeting.

In other meeting matters, Nhambure presented a proposal to declare Cameron a “Purple Heart City,” and the board passed it unanimously. The town will deliver the proclamation to the local chapter of the military order of the Purple Heart.

“It takes ninety days, and we can have a presentation on Memorial Day,” Nhambure said.

The Purple Heart is a United States military decoration in the president’s name for wounded or killed service members.

A $70 sign will be erected next to Cameron’s welcome sign.

Feature photo: Retired U.S. Army Captain Elizabeth Nhambure proposes making Cameron a Purple Heart City at the Sept. 26, 2023 meeting.

~Article and photo by Sandhills Sentinel journalist Stephanie M. Sellers; BS Mass Communications and Journalist, MFA Creative Writing.

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