07/18/14 — Commission changes policy on board appointments

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Commission changes policy on board appointments

By Steve Herring
Published in News on July 18, 2014 1:46 PM

More than two months after once routine appointments to county boards and committees turned contentious, the county not only has a new Appointment Committee, but a new procedure for making appointments as well.

In the past, the committee met prior to the commissioners' meetings on the first and third Tuesdays of the month. It would make nominations, which were acted on at that time.

When Commissioner Ed Cromartie asked his fellow board members in May if there might be a better way to handle appointments, committee chairman Ray Mayo reacted angrily.

The comment, Mayo said, questioned his integrity.

Cromartie said that was not his intent. Rather, he said, he believed that nominating a person at one meeting and voting at another would give commissioners more time to make a better-informed decision.

To defuse the issue, Chairman Wayne Aycock said he would name a new committee.

Aycock announced this week that he has replaced Mayo and Commissioners John Bell and Bill Pate with Cromartie and Commissioners Joe Gurley and Joe Daughtery.

Gurley, who takes over Mayo's position as chairman, outlined Tuesday the change in procedure, and Daughtery made the motion to adopt it.

It was unanimously approved.

Under the new procedure, the Appointment Committee will meet and review applicants for consideration for the various committees at the board's first-of-the-month session.

An announcement will be made about all of the committees that have vacancies.

If any commissioner or resident has a recommendation for a nominee, they would contact Marcia Wilson, clerk to the board, or any commissioner within a week of the board meeting.

At the second meeting of the month, the Appointment Committee will meet and bring back recommendations to the board for consideration.

The change is effective in August.

When the new committee was named, Mayo said he wanted the public to know that he had not been removed from the Appointment Committee because he had done anything wrong.

He also questioned dissolving the complete committee just because of one person. He did not say whom he was talking about, but over the past two months he and Bell have traded terse comments over the issue.