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SBI to investigate Smithfield employee pay

Posted July 14, 2011

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— Johnston County District Attorney Susan Doyle on Thursday asked the State Bureau of Investigation to determine whether any Smithfield employees committed fraud in accepting unapproved raises.

The Smithfield Town Council fired Town Manager Eric Williams in May after learning he handed out raises to four department heads, despite the council's decision to withhold raises because of a tight budget.

An investigation by the North Carolina League of Municipalities also determined that some employees were allowed to cash in unused vacation and sick leave.

Town Clerk Debbie Godwin and payroll clerk Lynn Powell quit their jobs after Williams' firing.

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  • Lead by Example Jul 14, 2011

    I'm sure there's much more to the story, but how can a pay raise be "illegal" to accept. I can see firing the town manager, but criminal charges for the employees? I wonder what statute(s) were possibly violated?

  • ljohnson247 Jul 14, 2011

    Could they have learned this from the Gov?

  • whsamanda Jul 14, 2011

    "I think they also "sold" vacation time back to their organization, which isn't even applicable - something made up to allow them to extort money from the local govt. Yes, I think laws were broken and they should be prosecuted - or at least made to pay the money back." /// well said coras078.
    The raise was less of an issue than selling the time back.
    County government hasn't had a raise in over 4 yrs.

  • john26 Jul 14, 2011

    Johnston County is corrupt from top to bottom. I hope that the SBI catches all of these violators and prosecutes them to the fullest extent of the law.

    Btw What ever happened to Susan Doyle's love triangle?

    It's still triangulating.

  • BBWAFRICANWOMAN Jul 14, 2011

    Johnston County is corrupt from top to bottom. I hope that the SBI catches all of these violators and prosecutes them to the fullest extent of the law.

    Btw What ever happened to Susan Doyle's love triangle?

  • affirmativediversity Jul 14, 2011

    I wonder why these guys didn't get the "Just reclassify your position" memo...that's how all the other good old boys and their toadies get a raise when no one else is getting one...its done so regularly in local government that I swear its in the County/Local Goverment management handbook.

  • affirmativediversity Jul 14, 2011

    I agree with 2alegal!!! It's all about who you know in Smithfield!!! per ncemt7

    ----------------------

    Its all about who you know all over North Carolina.

  • coras078 Jul 14, 2011

    That's the thing - Mr Williams did not authorize the raises - he was gone when they gave themselves raises. Anyone who works for any form of government knows that raises are not valid or authorized without proper signatures - nothing is done by word of mouth.

  • coras078 Jul 14, 2011

    From what I understand, the boss didn't give or authorize the raises. They took it upon themselves, with HR and Payroll initiating it. I think they also "sold" vacation time back to their organization, which isn't even applicable - something made up to allow them to extort money from the local govt. Yes, I think laws were broken and they should be prosecuted - or at least made to pay the money back.

  • ncemt7 Jul 14, 2011

    I agree with 2alegal!!! It's all about who you know in Smithfield!!!

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