PILOT MOUNTAIN — The Pilot Mountain Board of Commissioners reconvened on Friday to complete the agenda items that were not discussed after firing Town Manager Amanda Reid at Monday’s meeting. The weekday morning meeting did not deter town residents and business owners from attending, as the board opened to a full house.
On Monday the board unexpectedly went into closed session immediately following public comments. Returning from closed session the board voted to fire the manager, then adjourned the meeting without addressing any items on the agenda.
Apparently, not all of the commissioners were informed of the plan to go into closed session and discuss Reid’s employment prior to the meeting.
“To not make Commissioner Quinn and myself aware of the board’s intentions until the time, I think was very undermining and very sneaky,” said Commission Cordie Armstrong, expressing her frustration with the way Reid’s dismissal was handled.
Commissioners Kim Quinn and Armstrong requested opening public comments at the Friday meeting in light of the abrupt changes that took place Monday, but were shot down by their fellow board members.
The dismissal of Reid was largely glossed over, however Attorney Ed Woltz presented a letter to be added to Reid’s personnel file. While the letter was not read to the public, Woltz said, “it indicates that the issue was not personal conduct.” The board unanimously approved adding the letter to Reid’s file.
According to Mayor Dwight Atkins, the board hopes to appoint an interim manager at a special meeting scheduled for Sept. 23 at 6 p.m.
By unanimous vote, Michael Boaz was officially appointed to the position of interim finance officer. “I was in contact with the LGC (Local Government Commission), and they recommended that we appoint by name, and the duties that they have, a finance officer,” said Atkins.
According to Boaz, this appointment helped clarify any confusion between the board and town staff, as many of the the duties of finance officer have still been performed by Town Clerk Holly Utt. Boaz will remain in a part-time contracted capacity.
Additionally, a resolution was passed assigning the title of deputy finance officer to the town manager position. Previously, no one in town held the title. The new title will allow the town to continue to function without interruption when the finance officer is not available.
“The law says that either the finance officer or the deputy finance officer’s signature must be on every check, so if the finance officer is out sick you can’t make payroll, write checks, sign contracts. You can’t do anything,” said Boaz.
Diane Blakemore may be reached at 336-368-2222 or on twitter @PilotReporter.