WRAL Investigates

Perdue orders closer look at local ABC boards

Posted November 23, 2009 2:08 p.m. EST
Updated December 7, 2009 3:05 p.m. EST

— A wide range in pay for local managers of North Carolina's ABC boards and the reluctance of boards to make that information public has drawn the attention of Gov. Bev Perdue.

The Star-News of Wilmington reported Sunday that its inquiry into salaries at New Hanover County and other ABC boards prompted the chairman of the state ABC commission to take the matter to Perdue's office, which ordered a closer look.

That comes on the heels of a two-part WRAL News Investigation into the ABC system.

The newspaper reported that Billy Williams, the administrator of the New Hanover Alcoholic Beverage Control board who has worked there for nearly 42 years, makes $232,200 a year.

His son, Bradley Williams, an employee since 1994 and the assistant administrator, earns $115,500 annually.

State commission chairman Jon Williams makes $109,553 a year. State Administrator Michael Herring earns $97,279.

Cumberland County's top ABC representative earns $101,000, Durham's makes $112,000 and Wake's makes $127,000, according to ABC's records.

Wake County does more than twice as much in sales compared with New Hanover County. New Hanover had the fourth-highest liquor sales statewide, according to the state's records.

The general manager of New Hanover County's ABC Board did not return WRAL's calls.