06/22/11 — New position will promote communication

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New position will promote communication

By Ty Johnson
Published in News on June 22, 2011 1:46 PM

With an elevated budget ceiling giving the city $223,815 to work with thanks to revaluation and an increase in golf course revenue, the city has put in plans for a new position that Mayor Al King said has been years in the making.

The city's new public information officer position has been under consideration for more than three years, Interim City Manager Tasha Logan said.

"The job will be to coordinate information and respond to the media and the public when there are inquiries," she said.

Besides press releases, the employee will be in charge of coordinating the city's public message, including producing and managing content for the government access channel and the city website.

The city will hire the new staff member using the savings realized through the termination of two full-time positions in golf course maintenance and the additional revenue in the budget's revisions, which were approved by council during Monday's work session.The city's communication and marketing fund of $30,000, which is contained in the city manager's budget, will be utilized for the purchase of camera and video editing equipment. That money, which was made up largely of the payout to a contractor for the filming of council meetings, will also be used to hire a part-time camera technician through an agency, which the staff member will supervise.

"We already have $30,000 in the budget for media outreach. Additional funds are coming from additional revenue realized from the revenue neutral rate and savings from the golf course," Ms. Logan said.

The final budget shows the officer receiving an annual salary of $53,380.

Other items in the budget which was approved Tuesday evening include the establishment of the municipal tax district tax rate at 23.5 cents per $100 of valuation, a reduction from 25 cents during the 2010-11 fiscal year. The revenue-neutral rate, which would allow for the collection of the same amount of revenue as last fiscal year, would have been .2185. The 23.5 rate was the same as suggested by the Downtown Goldsboro Development Corp.'s board of directors at its June meeting.