Cooper blocks bonus payment to outgoing McCrory administration officials

Posted January 20

— Gov. Pat McCrory ordered an unusual set of bonus payments for his 10 cabinet secretaries as the Republican's administration wound down last month.

In a letter to the state controller and interim director of human resources, McCrory said heads of his 10 cabinet departments should receive payouts "for accrued vacation and bonus leave as if they were regular State employees covered by the North Carolina Human Resources Act, retroactive to their first day of employment in the exempt position."

The total amount of money entailed in fulfilling that order could be as much as $166,000. While ordinary state workers might receive such payments when they retire, cabinet secretaries, who earn higher salaries, typically would not receive such bonus payments upon leaving office.

"These irregular payments have been brought to the attention of the administration and are halted pending further review," said Ford Porter, a spokesman for Gov. Roy Cooper.

Cooper, a Democrat, took over from McCrory, a Republican, on Jan. 1 after a contentious election season.

It's unclear whether similar payments have been made to cabinet secretaries leaving prior administrations. It's also unclear whether cabinet secretaries who previously served in other jobs, such as former Department of Environmental Quality Secretary Donald van der Vaart, might be eligible for some form of payment.

The 10 people who McCrory put in line for the extra payments headed departments that included DEQ, Administration, Commerce, Transportation, Health and Human Services, Information Technology, Military and Veterans Affairs, Natural and Cultural Resources, Public Safety and Revenue.


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  • Linda Tally Jan 24, 2017
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  • Stacie Hagwood Jan 22, 2017
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    It is my understanding that these people were not true full-time employees and thus could not accumulate leave of any kind: sick OR vacation.

  • Wayne Smith Jan 22, 2017
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    Anyone knowing Cooper personally, knows how this despicable human being operates.

  • Sheryl Caps Jan 22, 2017
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    Thanks Gov Cooper, Rat has schemed and played with enough of our tax dollars. Give them there accrued vacation and sick. Make sure Rat didn't play around with the vacation and sick numbers. Knowing him, he has pushed up the numbers so they would be paid more. Never trusted this dude. Never

  • Alfred Barnes Jan 22, 2017
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    Isn't it odd no one can figure out if this was common practice during 100 years of democrat iron handed control?

    Thanks WKRL

  • Stephen Batchelor Jan 21, 2017
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    McCrory just another trumpite. If he couldn't do the payments with transparency, then that shows his corruptness. Thank you Governor Cooper for stopping this.

  • John Baird Jan 21, 2017
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    If the payments are for unused leave that they have earned then they deserve to get paid like all other employees who have earned leave on the books when they depart. Therefore they would not be a bonus at all.

  • Grant Sherman Jan 21, 2017
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    Wow, a large money grab for his cronies as he is going out the door? Corrupt and disgusting. But this will be the norm for the next four years.

  • Benjamin Kite Jan 21, 2017
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    I cannot say whether or not he did what was right, but Cooper clearly did what was best for North Carolina. Since that is what we hired him to do, we can say that he did his job. To those who did not get paid, I would just say this: If McCrory really wanted you to be paid the money you thought he owed you, he wouldn't have put the decision on Cooper's desk. Therefore, you may conclude that McCrory never really wanted you to get that money in the first place.

  • Dolly Butler Jan 20, 2017
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    The more days that go by ...more days passing since Pat has been voted out of office...the more shameful he has become and the reputation he leaves behind is ever more tarnished