Almost a year to the day after Pineville’s former town administrator resigned, seasoned municipal employee Ed Humphries started in his interim position.And five months after town finance director Ann Wilson resigned, Michael Hicks began his interim position in that role.Both men are retired municipal employees and limited to 1,000 hours per calendar year. Humphries and Hicks will be paid respective hourly rates of $48 and $42. The part-time employees will not receive benefits, said Pineville Mayor George Fowler.“I’m here to help them in the transition period,” said Humphries, 67. “I enjoy this type of job. They’ve got some great people living here.”For the past several months, town officials have assumed some of the duties of the town administrator and finance director. In June, Pineville town council unanimously approved a $9,703,634 budget and budget ordinance for the city of 7,500. Officials also began conducting an audit that they hope to complete by the end of August.Each town councilmember was also assigned a department to oversee. For instance, Mayor Pro Tem David Phillips – who is a cold-case homicide detective for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police – works with the town fire and police departments.The town board spent several months looking for someone to fill the town administrator position but their last candidate declined because he’d received another offer closer to his Florida home. Earlier this summer, town officials asked the Centralina Council of Governments for help finding an interim employee to fill the position vacated by town administrator Mike Rose.Rose resigned July 31 to take a position as Harrisburg’s new town administrator. In Pineville, Rose oversaw the daily work of all departments.The Council of Governments recommended Humphries, who has spent decades working in municipal government. Since 1991, he has served in various municipal functions, including mayor and town manager of Huntersville and town manager in Harrisburg, Stanley, Indian Trail and Bessemer City.Before that, Humphries worked as an employee of First Union National Bank in Charlotte for 21 years. Humphries received a Bachelor of Science in business administration from East Carolina University. Humphries, who lives in the Sherwood Forest neighborhood in Huntersville, already works part-time on Tuesdays and Thursdays as the town of Fairview’s clerk and land-use administrator. He is expected to work at Pineville town hall on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.Fowler said Humphries will oversee 88 employees and will report to the town council. Fowler said the town administrator must also oversee the town’s telephone and electric companies, utilities that many small towns do not oversee.“It’s more like a business acumen that your manager has to have because they have to deal with things like revenue, customer service and competitive rates,” said Fowler. Humphries started in his interim role July 29. On Aug. 1, Hicks started as the town’s interim finance director after responding to the town’s job listing.Former finance director Ann Wilson resigned on Feb. 15 to pursue another career path.Fowler said Hicks’s broad knowledge of municipal operations will help the town improve. Hicks worked as general accounting supervisor and assistant chief accountant for the city of Charlotte between 1984 and 2002. He also served as business manager for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Utility Department since 2002.The Charlotte resident retired from the city in late June. Hicks received a Bachelor of Science in business administration as well as a Master of Accountancy from the University of South Carolina. Hicks will oversee the town’s two finance department employees and will also help complete Pineville’s audit. “I’m excited to get the opportunity to do this,” said Hicks, 60. “Hopefully I’ll be an asset to them. The main focus will be the audit.” But just like Humphries, Fowler said Hicks is not interested in a full-time position with the town.Fowler said he expects it to be another six to eight months before either position is permanently filled.“We want to make sure we pick the right people,” he said. “But for now, it’s going to give employees a feeling of comfort to have somebody to go to and it’s going to relieve me and the other council members of some of the work we picked up.”
Friday, Aug. 02, 2013
Pineville fills key jobs with interim leaders
Arriero; 704-358-5945; On Twitter: @earriero
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