Armstrong vows to continue work for county

By Thomas Wilson

STAR STAFF
twilson@starhq.com

   A representative of the county's 8th District for over 30 years, William "Bill" Armstrong, 76, is seeking another term on the Carter County Commission.
   "I want to continue with pressing programs that are in place and continue working for the good of the city and the county," he said when asked about his decision to seek another term.
   Armstrong said he supported the county's decision to hire a financial director to consolidate some departmental operations.
   "I think that is the right direction to go," Armstrong said.
   He said he supported government consolidation but had questioned if the move would save the county money.
   "I've been for consolidation of government. It's supposed to save money but I'm not sure that it would," he said.
   The county's hiring of a financial director would also give the next county executive elected on August 1 a greater role in economic development for the county.
   Like many sitting commissioners, Armstrong stressed the county's need to purchase and develop new industrial land for economic growth.
   "The competition for industry is real competitive," he said. "It's tough to get industry at this time. We don't have the incentives to offer at the present time."
   He also said he supported the Watauga Regional Water Authority's efforts to establish a new water source from the Watauga River to supply areas of the city and county.
   "We need to continue to work to get that water supply for the city and the county," said Armstrong.
   The 8th District incumbent also said he supported countywide zoning saying, "I think the whole county should be zoned and have the growth controlled."
   He also said property was available around the county's Justice Center to develop a new facility to house inmates and alleviate overcrowding in the county jail.
   Armstrong was born in Rogersville and moved to Elizabethton in 1950.
   He spent 41 years in public education retiring as principal of Harold McCormick Elementary. He is married to Catherine Armstrong. The couple live in the Harold McCormick precinct.
   "I think I can work with the city and county together to have a harmonious relationship," he said. "I've tried to do that as long as I've been there, and we're going to need people with experience in the next few years with the change of executives."