The Pinehurst Hot Mess: Moore County GOP thinks having a job is BAD.

Believe it or not, folks.

Laura Sumrall, a relatively recent arrival in Pinehurst from The Village of Annoyingville in the great state of Yankeeland, really has inserted herself into local politics.  She, like ‘Parachute Pat’ Pizzella, has been here for all of five minutes but thinks she knows what’s best for all of us.  

Laura is quite an active operative for the county GOP.  I am sure this is how she got ONE of my email addresses.  She frequently spams inboxes all over the county with her opinions and insights on local political info. (Please stop spamming me, Laura.) 

One of Laura’s emails tipped me off on who the anti-rental-property crowd is endorsing in the upcoming Pinehurst municipal races. 

Laura, I’m told, does not like the fact that people are allowed to rent property in the village on a short term basis.  (Never mind that we are a resort community and one of the world’s top tourist destinations.)  

Her “reasoning” behind her opposition?  She reportedly doesn’t like all the houses with their porch lights turned off on Halloween eve.  

I’ve lived here full-time for 20 years and have never left exterior lights on at my place on Halloween.  That tells people you aren’t participating.  We have very few trick-or-treat age kids in town.  I don’t have any at my house or near my house.

But that is apparently her reason for favoring the stomping-upon of people’s property rights in-town.

Here’s her latest missive sent out to email addresses she obtained as a result of her work for county party leadership:


A full-time mayor? Really? None other than former two-term mayor Nancy Fiorillo — a retireee, BTW — will tell you the job of mayor is not full-time. In all honesty, it’s more ceremonial.

Mayoral candidate and current council member Jeff Morgan has been active-duty military, a physician, and an administrator with the regional VA hospital authority.  He’s been able to work some from home, and some on the road.

Mayoral candidate Kevin Drum owns two businesses in downtown Pinehurst — a restaurant and a marketing firm.  Both put him in direct contact with residents and tourists on a regular and daily basis. He’s his own boss, and is typically about five minutes away from village hall, if he’s needed.

Pizzella in the “private sector”?  Do a little research, and you will learn that Pizzella’s routine has been to work a little in the federal bureaucracy, get out, and then lobby that same bureaucracy. From what you hear out of DC, the big reason he didn’t get the Secretary of Labor job was because of his ties to scandal-ridden lobbyist Jack Abramoff — the poster boy for DC corruption.  Pizzella was a little too much for DC to stomach, but he’s somehow OK for mayor of Pinehurst? 

Pizzella made a recent, quixotic, incredibly opportunistic pitch for an even lower property tax rate.  Yet, he’s been an eager supporter of all kinds of wasteful spending during his time on the village council.  Pizzella actually got the village staff to erect cameras downtown and spend time counting trucks driving down the street.

Pizzella has passionately supported the schemes of lame-duck mayor John Strickland – arguably the worst in the village’s history – that have gotten us sued or nearly gotten us sued.  Pizzella is four more years of the current mess at village hall.

Back to the full-time nonsense.  Strickland, Pizzella, and the late Jane Hogeman all took the full-time thing a little too far.  They would regularly camp out at village hall micro-managing and nit-picking village staff to comply with the demands of their cocktail party pals.  A record number of talented, experienced staff fled for greener pastures. But the terrible trio kept it up.

“Managing growth” is a code word for stomping-the-manure out of your property rights.  Pizzella has aided and abetted asinine policies like: regulations on the brightness of exterior lighting, quotas and spacing requirements for trees on individual residential properties, never-ending building moratoriums, and restrictions on how many people can stay at your house and for how long.

How about some planning on managing the infrastructure to accommodate all of these visitors and new arrivals — like, you know, The Pizzellas?

Let’s not forget that the US Open is back in town next year.  If you squash all of these rental properties, where will all of the visitors and spectators STAY?

Pizzella also helped foment and circulate the bald-faced lie about an alleged “short-term-rental problem.”  The police department could offer no proof of any sort of problem.  Yet, Pizzella and Strickland kept marching their cocktail party allies — and a few other confused, addle-brained seniors — in front of council and the media to regurgitate the nonsense. All kinds of bans were mulled. Threats of lawsuits abounded.  Pizzella’s response reportedly was: “Let them sue.”

Shades of Marie Antoinette, eh? It’s easy to have that kind of attitude when you’re paying for lawyers with other people’s money.  And BOY do lawyers make out like bandits when dealing with the so-called “leaders” in Pinehurst.

(Pinehurst is one of the few places in America where a lawyer is pretty much a requirement when talking to city hall. )

Pizzella has also coddled our equally horrible village manager, who has managed to tick off a majority of our county commissioners AND our state legislature delegation. NO ONE — outside of village hall – can understand why our village manager is still employed.

If you thought John Strickland was great, you’ll LOVE his henchman Pat Pizzella.

And the next time you see Laura Sumrall or any of the Moore GOP higher-ups, let them know that working for a living is JUST FINE.  Even more so if you are working in an honorable position.