Maxton rebootssearch for newtown manager

By Bob Shiles - [email protected]

MAXTON — Town officials want to expand their search for a town manager.

At a special meeting this week, Commissioners James McDougald and Elizabeth O’Neal McEachin Gilmore requested that the application process for the manager be reopened so that additional applicants can apply.

“I’d like to see more applications from those with more experience,” McDougald said.

Fourteen applications were received during October. The application process was stopped, however, when the board decided to delay the hiring until new members were seated on the town board after the Nov. 3 General Election.

Mayor Emmett “Chip” Morton agreed to consult with the town’s attorney, Nick Sojka, to determine the process the board should follow in re-opening the application process. The issue will be discussed when the board meets Jan. 19.

According to Morton, the town is looking to pay the new manager a starting salary of between $49,000 and $52,000, which does not include the cost of benefits. The salary would be increased by 5 percent after six months, Morton said.

Maxton has been without a full-time town manager since early 2012. Angela Pitchford, the town’s tax collector, has been acting as the town manager.

Pitchford said Tuesday she has not decided if she will seek the manager’s job on a permanent basis.

“I will be here until a manager is in place, whether that manager be me or someone else,” she said.

In other business:

— Morton asked the commissioners to choose among several advisory committees on which they would like to serve. The committees, which would just make recommendations to the full five-member board, include: Economic Development; Intergovernmental and Community Relations; Public Safety; Public Works, Water and Wastewater; and Recreation.

Morton said the public would be encouraged to attend committee meetings.

“We want members of the community to come out and give us their ideas and complaints,” he said.

— Commissioner Virgil Hutchinson was appointed as the board’s representative on the Lumber River Council of Governments.

— Police Chief Tammy Deese was given the authority to certify two part-time officers.

— Commissioner O’Neal McEachin Gilmore asked the board to put at the top of its priority list addressing flooding problems in the town.

“We need to focus on drainage,” she said. “We need to put it at the top of our agenda.”

By Bob Shiles

[email protected]

Bob Shiles can be reached at 910-416-5165.

Bob Shiles can be reached at 910-416-5165.

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