Board to consider self raises

By Eva Winemiller

PILOT MOUNTAIN — A raise for town commissioners will be considered by that very body during Monday night’s Board of Commissioners meeting.

Recently, during a budget workshop meeting Town Manager Michael Boaz recommended a raise in the monthly stipend the commissioners receive.

The commissioners receive $75 each month to help with expenditures related their work as town board members, to include use of their personal cell phone, computers, other technology, mileage and to compensate them for their time in attending town meetings and events, according to Boaz.

If the board votes to approve the recommended budget, the monthly income will be raised to $250 each month.

“The increase is based on the amount that elected officials in other municipalities in North Carolina are paid,” stated Boaz.

According to Boaz, the average compensation for elected officials across the state in 2016 was $3,235.

However, Boaz stated he did not compare financial position for those similar to Pilot Mountain.

“The commissioners are paid using general fund money and that part of the town’s operations is in much better condition than it was just a few short years ago,” added Boaz.

“We have a fund balance that is over 40 percent, which is an indication of a much stronger financial position.”

In other business,the board is seeking to create a department devoted to downtown revitalization as part of this year’s budget.

“This new department includes the addition of a half-time employee that will work with the newly created Main Street committee to promote economic development of our downtown,” stated Boaz.

The position is being created in conjunction with the application submitted to the Main Street Downtown Associate Community program on behalf of the town in May.

“We hope to hear that we have been accepted in the program in early July,” added Boaz.

Pilot Mountain officials have been trying for several years to get into the program, according to Mayor Dwight Atkins. However, due to budget changes within the Department of Commerce the prior applications had not been approved.

The position, if approved, will provide marketing for the town of Pilot Mountain while working with town officials to help brand the downtown area, according to Atkins.

By Eva Winemiller

Reach Eva Winemiller at (336) 415-4739 or on Twitter @ThePilotNC

Reach Eva Winemiller at (336) 415-4739 or on Twitter @ThePilotNC

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