This Thursday, Republican Guilford County commissioner James Upchurch will bring a proposal to the board to spend $40,000 of the county budget to install “In God We Trust” signs across 10 county buildings.

Upchurch, who was voted into office in 2020, originally ran and was elected as a Democrat but switched parties just a year later. Now, after one term as a county commissioner, Upchurch is making his rounds on the GOP circuit in a bid for state auditor in next year’s elections.

On his campaign website, he notes that he “will hold our school systems, local governments, and elected officials accountable for how they spend our tax dollars.”

That’s rich.

If passed on Thursday, “In God We Trust” will be installed on buildings across our county including both county courthouses, the county jails, the health departments and the animal shelter.

I mean, what a waste of taxpayer dollars.

Sure, $40,000 may not seem like a lot to Upchurch or some of our readers. But it’s certainly more than I make a year. And it’s also much more than many county employees make.

In fact, according to the county’s most recent job schedule, positions like sheriff’s deputy, building inspector, community health educator, elections assistants and most social workers all make less than $40,000 per year as a starting salary. Some don’t even make that much as a maximum salary. In fact, the average person in Guilford County was only making $33,737 per year as of 2021.

But sure, why not blow $40,000 on something as stupid as putting up Christian signs on 10 of our most important buildings?

Why not further deteriorate the line that is supposedly meant to exist between the workings of church and state?

When reached by email to justify his idea, Upchurch simply stated that it was because it’s the national motto. But an article by the Rhino Times included that part of Upchurch’s reasoning was because “traditional values are under attack.”

Oh, okay.

Like trans rights are under attack? Like women’s basic health care is under attack? Like Black people’s rights are under attack? Like working-class people’s right to housing is under attack?


Upchurch is running for auditor of the entire state next year, a position that is meant to “ensure good stewardship of public funds.” I wouldn’t trust him to budget my meals for the next week.

The county commission meeting takes place Thursday at 5:30 p.m. in the old county courthouse located at 301 W. Market St. in downtown Greensboro.

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