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COMMENTARY: First we were "ignorant"; Now Commissioner Thompson says we're "whores"



WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) - There's no doubt about it, you'll never have to guess what New Hanover County Commissioner Jason Thompson means when he speaks. He's very straightforward, shoots from the hip, and sometimes makes our jobs fun with his spicy comments.

This week was no exception. County Commissioners have been questioned by many local media outlets on why they chose to spend $36,000 to have someone from out of state come in this week to help facilitate their annual two-day workshop where they got the chance to play with Tinkertoys.

When asked about being in the media spotlight of late and the commission being transparent, Thompson told the local newspaper, "They are whoring themselves out for ratings.”

That's been one of Thompson's standard responses when asked about recent coverage of spending choices commissioners have made of late -- they're just doing it for ratings. He's also quick to glibly reply that if people don't like the job he's doing, they can just "fire him."

This is the same commissioner who called me out personally a few months back when we asked why he, as chairman, chose to give the USS Gravely Commissioning group $25,000 to help host a party for a ship that was coming to Wilmington with or without the money. He said I, and the TV station, were "ignorant" if we didn't see the value of spending that tax money on entertaining sailors and VIP's.

This is the same commissioner that, when faced with a budget shortfall in 2010, chose to hold Airlie Gardens and Cape Fear Community College's new Union Station building hostage unless voters approved a new tax.

Yet he doesn't mind spending $25,000 here for a party and $36,000 there on a two-day meeting, when now taxes are higher, the county has been freezing jobs and taking furlough days, and county workers have gone months without seeing a pay increase.

And let's not forget that this is the same county commissioner that "invited" Leland Mayor Walter Futch out into the parking lot during a committee meeting to discuss comments Futch had made during a prior meeting. The invitation, Thompson said, was so they could settle the dispute like men. But then Thompson backed up a bit, saying he's recently gotten good with God, and WOULD HAVE invited Futch out, but was a changed man. But then he makes the invitation formal again, or said Futch could sit there and "wet his Huggies."

One major detail Thompson seems to be in the dark about is TV ratings. First, there are only four formal "ratings periods" for TV stations across the country. They happen in February, May, July and November, so Mr. Thompson, we're not even IN a ratings period.

Second, WWAY doesn't subscribe to Nielsen Ratings books anymore. We don't even know WHAT are our ratings are.

Disclaimer: Comments posted on this, or any story are opinions of those people posting them, and not the views or opinions of WWAY NewsChannel 3, its management or employees. You can view our comment policy here.


The question is:

does Jason do this volunteer job because he he wants to represent the taxpayer in an efficiently running local government (people just like himself), or because he likes the parties and VIP treatment?

His record speaks for itself and if the media is under-reporting the truth, he merely needs to correct them. These obstinate responses speak volumes.

pay raise in months?

You said "...and county workers have gone months without seeing a pay increase."

Months without a pay raise? Are you kidding? County workers dont DESERVE monthly pay raises..and where in this country does anyone GET MONTHLY PAY RAISES?

Im in a Tech job and make way above average wages for Wilmington and havent seen a raise in years. NO ONE gets monthly pay raises, so that doesnt hold any water. If they do, then that could be part of the problem here with our budget.

As far as Jason goes, I dont particularly like the guy, but hes right in the aspect of having to spend money to get people here. 20-40k dollars isnt too much to spend to bring people to Wilmington that will influence others to help out or to act as goodwill ambassadors to others for future possible relationships.

And Scott, Im surprised you took the time or have the understanding of anything that isnt related to fluffing & covering for Obamas plundering mistakes and ineptness.


For the record: County employees have not had any raises in YEARS!! (At least 5 or 6). They have lost 2 weeks of vacation and taken days off without pay.

Monthly Raises?

No one said they should get monthly pay raises. He said they haven't gotten one in months. Could mean 12,16,24,etc,etc,etc. Anyone knows nobody gets monthly raises.I know it's a conservative trait,but when someone makes a comment about one of your heroes you shouldn't respond by showing your ignorance.

No monthly pay raises ever.

When the economy was better NHC employees were given raises once a year. For both fiscal year 2009 and 2010 employees have taken a reduction in pay.

"Second, WWAY doesn't

"Second, WWAY doesn't subscribe to Nielsen Ratings books anymore. We don't even know WHAT are our ratings are."

Finding out the truth would be devastating I am sure!

Does the media just report the news anymore?

Why is WWAY TV3 taking news and making it personal? I appreciate knowing how the money is spent and the response given by commissioners as to where it is spent, but this is slightly worse than community rant boards.
Scott Pickey seems to have gotten some of the morning beat in his coffee and is now copying their act. I'm more conservative than democrat, but there is no need in taking your Pickey Vs. Thompson personal dislikes and placing them on the news.
Thompson's responses are certainly news worthy. The other juvenile ticky tack crap that floods this article is high school material at best.

Does the media just report the news anymore?

I agree that Mr. Pickey is using his news arena to express his personal dislike of Mr. Thompson. Mr. Thompson has a job to do and does it well. My opinion is that Mr. Pickey should go back to doing the job he is paid for which is reporting the news. Mr. Pickey, I beleive you have accomplished what you set out to do seeing the number of comments on this issue.
If we want entertaining drama on this level we can tune into TMZ at 10:00pm during the week.


This commentary is right on! WWAY should report news and not try to make it.... while Scott acknowledges his personal opinions are included - as a paid reporter this is inappropriate & your editor should have flagged them and deleted. Please elevate the level of 'professional' reporting at WWAY and also cancel that silly "Rant" segment. At least the new team of anchors (Cacky & Chris) present themselves professionally.

Jason Thompson, how dare you

Jason Thompson, how dare you bring GOD into this. You are nowhere near what a christian should be. As a taxpayer and your boss, How about I demand your immediate resignation. Take Barfield with you. There is a reason you are not on the city council anymore. However, I must say you fit the right definition of a whore. "Selling your body and principles to the highest bidder for money, throwing all morals aside." Oh and be careful who you call out into the parking lot. This is the south and there are quite a few good ole boys that would love to take you up on that offer. In the words of Donald Trump, you're fired.

At this point I strongly

At this point I strongly believe that Thompson is doing alot more harm to the reputation of the board and of the people of New Hanover County.He has once again let his mouth override his brain and come out with more damaging talk. Do we really need to put up with this street punk representing us as a county? Its time for you Jason to resign or sit down and shut up! Years ago the school board made a policy that only one person on the board would be a spokesperson,,,maybe its time the county board does the same!

What's with the language?

If people can't control their words any better than this, they should not be in office. Disgusting choice.

Starting to get it

About time that block head thompson started to figure it out, the public is tired of your antics. You are ignorant, a whore and most importantly, an idiot. We hope to fire you next time you run.

Jason Thompson

I say BRAVO for telling it like it is.


Well Played Scott. Way to go!

Thompson the pimp

If WWAY and other news sources are "Whores", then Jason is the pimp. Nobody else in city or county government has ever had as much free publicity. Of course that is exactly his purpose.

The stump grinding business is probably pretty boring.