12/28/06 — No decisions on GATEWAY, animal shelter managers

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No decisions on GATEWAY, animal shelter managers

By Andrew Bell
Published in News on December 28, 2006 1:45 PM

Despite speculation that a new Goldsboro-Wayne Transportation Authority director could be announced before Christmas, Wayne County officials said a new hire won't happen until the new year.

Since GATEWAY's next scheduled meeting isn't until the end of January, last month board members considered calling a special meeting before Christmas to hear and possibly act on the search committee's recommendation.

The search committee, consisting of Wayne County Manager Lee Smith, Wayne Human Resources Director Sue Guy and Goldsboro City Manager Joe Huffman, conducted interviews for a new director earlier this month.

Mrs. Guy said the search committee limited the selection to three candidates, but a final recommendation won't be made to the board until some time next month. Until then, board members will handle any transportation issues that arise.

Once a recommendation is made, the board will have to determine the incoming director's salary. That amount is included in Wayne County's payroll so the director can receive county employee benefits, but the county doesn't determine that person's salary, Mrs. Guy said.

Former director Stephen Wright, who led the public transit system since August 2005, resigned Nov. 30 and has taken a new job with Atlanta-based Route Match.

County residents also will have to wait until January for a recommendation on a manager for a new animal shelter, which could begin initial construction next month.

Mrs. Guy said the position has been advertised and the county has received about 15 applications, but interviews have not been conducted. Earlier this month, Mrs. Guy said she, Smith and other county officials would conduct interviews before the end of the month.

But the holiday schedule has not allowed for county officials and applicants to begin those interviews, Mrs. Guy said. After Jan. 1, she said interviews will begin and the search committee should have a recommendation before construction begins.

But contractors and county officials are still unsure where the new facility will be. County officials waited through most of December for surveyors to complete soil tests and other site surveys. The completion of those tests will allow contractor Walter Vick and LSV Partnership Architects to complete engineering specifications on the building plans. But county officials have not announced the progress of approving the site and its location in Wayne.

The person selected to be the animal shelter manager will work with those contractors during the planning and building, Smith said. Other responsibilities will include working with local veterinarians to plan how to provide emergency treatment for animals, developing a spay and neuter program and streamlining the adoption process, Smith said.

A new animal shelter manager will earn between $37,577 and $58,607 a year, Mrs. Guy said.