Harrisburg relieves manager

The Harrisburg Town Council voted Oct. 24 not to renew the town administrator's contract and immediately removed her from duties.

Five of the seven council members were present for the vote Oct. 24 at a regular town meeting. Jeffrey Redfern and Jeff Phillips were absent.

The others unanimously approved the decision to put Michele Reapsmith on administrative leave with pay until Nov. 30, when her contract ends.

Reapsmith was hired as finance director in 2009 and was appointed town administrator in 2010.

She said her departure was a mutually beneficial decision.

"It's the nature of the position," said Reapsmith.

"I worked at the pleasure of the council."

Council member Bill Williams said he had always had a good relationship with Reapsmith, but he voted in favor of the decision.

"The only thing that I can say at this point is that it was unanimous and, in my opinion, it was justified," Williams said. "I enjoyed working with her up to a point, and I was probably one of her supporters but, obviously, not renewing her contract was justified."

A special meeting to discuss personnel matters in closed session was scheduled for 9 a.m. Oct. 29, Williams said.

The council could vote to take action on the matter, but any voting is likely to take place publicly, after the closed session.

"We may go ahead and advertise for the position, but we'll definitely let the new council pick her successor," said Williams.

Harrisburg voters will elect four council members Nov. 8.

Meet the candidates

Four of the seven incumbent council members are not running for re-election.

The four new council members will be sworn in by mid-December.

The council seats of Chad Baucom, Jeff Phillips and Steve Sciascia are not up for election this year.

A drop-in event to meet candidates for Harrisburg Town Council will be 7-8 p.m. Nov. 1 at Three Monkeys Grill, 4350 Main St., Harrisburg.

Nine candidates are running for the four open seats.

Election day is Nov. 8, and absentee one-stop voting for Cabarrus County as a whole is available from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Nov. 5 at the Cabarrus Board of Elections office in Concord.