07 April 2011
Wilmington, N.C. - The University of North Carolina Wilmington is bringing the expertise of its faculty, staff and members of the local community together to discuss major political and societal issues through a series of free public forums. The first forum in the series, which will be held Monday, April 18 from 6:30-8 p.m. in UNCW's Warwick Center, will explore “The Federal Deficit: What it Means and Why Should You Care?”
“We wanted to develop a forum series that would help members of the public understand the complexities of some of the major issues facing us as a nation, and how those issues affect us at the state and local levels as well,” said Tom Barth, interim vice chancellor for UNCW’s Division for Public Service and Continuing Studies, which is co-sponsoring the forum with the Cameron School of Business. “UNCW has a great deal of faculty and staff expertise in many areas, and we want to make that knowledge available to people in the community.”
The deficit forum will be moderated by Milan Dluhy, faculty member in UNCW’s Department of Public and International Affairs, and will feature the following panelists:
• Tom Simpson, UNCW Executive in Residence in Economics and Finance and a former member of the Federal Reserve Board, will give an overview of the federal deficit from a national perspective.
• Mark Lanier, UNCW Chancellor’s Office, will discuss the impact of the federal deficit and related issues on the state budget process
• Sterling Cheatham, Wilmington City Manager, will bring the issue to the local level, discussing the city’s budget process and the change in availability of federal funds
• A representative of the local business community who will share the impact of the deficit on business growth and development in the Wilmington area
A question-and-answer session will follow the panel discussion.
“We hope that people will leave this session with a better understanding of what the federal deficit is, how it has grown to its current size, how it affects us in southeastern North Carolina, and some of the options for beginning to decrease it,” said Barth. “We hope people will find these forums informative and provide them with information they need to make decisions as citizens and voters.”
Barth said he anticipates that UNCW will offer the forums three to four times a year.