PILOT MOUNTAIN — Just weeks after approving the 2015-2016 budget, the Pilot Mountain board has amended the spending plan, allocating $32,000 for a state-required finance officer position.
Just where the board will get the money isn’t clear.
The board gathered in a special meeting earlier this week to discuss the position, after having cut the post from the budget despite knowing it was required by the state. The board said the town didn’t have enough money for the post when it cut the position originally.
However, representatives from the Local Government Commission (LGC) expressed its concerns about the lack of a finance officer during a July 13 meeting, and officials from the LGC intend to do a site visit to Pilot Mountain in the coming month. At that point the title and some of the duties of finance officer were appointed to a current staff member, without additional training or compensation.
This week the board revisited the position, with Town Manager Amanda Reid sharing the possibility of joining into an inter-local agreement, satisfying the part-time needs of two local agencies with one employee.
The board agreed to advertise for a part-time finance officer, while also pursuing options for an inter-local agreement. “We need to find something with long-term stability,” said Reid.
Mayor Dwight Atkins said, “I propose that we, by way of a budget amendment, adjust the budget to appropriate a half time finance officer position.” He added, “I, personally, feel like this is something we need to expedite.”
Reid reminded the board, “We need to identify where the funds will come from. We should wait to do a budget amendment until we determine how much money we need.”
A unanimous vote approved the allocation of $34,000 for the part-time finance officer position, leaving the budget with a $34,000 deficit as the board didn’t determine from where the funding would come. Commissioner Cordie Armstrong was not in attendance for the special meeting.
The meeting was moved upstairs in Town Hall at the last minute due to water damage in the basement. It was unclear at the time what the cause of the damage was, however a ceiling tile had fallen and a large amount of water was covering the chairs and floor. Atkins noted that another budget amendment would be required to make repairs.
Town Hall is accepting applications for vacancies on the ABC Board, TDA Board, and Planning and Zoning Board. Applications can be found at Town Hall. All vacancies are slated to be filled at the meeting on Aug. 17.
Diane Blakemore may be reached at 336-368-2222 or on twitter @PilotReporter.