Tuesday, June 18, 2024

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Graham, NC 27253
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Council makes board appointments, shelving several current members

Graham’s city council made appointments and re-appointments to seven advisory boards Tuesday night, changing the configuration on four of them by not re-appointing several members and installing instead new applicants for several of the boards.

When the city council turned to the issue of board appointments at around 10:00 p.m., after meeting for four hours, mayor Jennifer Talley initially proposed what she outlined as a “slate” of appointees to each of the seven committees, in order to expedite their consideration.

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The appointments had been carried over from the council’s June meeting, which had also lasted late into the night.

Her slate, as outlined, was as follows:

ABC Board – reappointing Robert Sykes, who had requested reappointment.

Appearance Commission/Tree Board – reappointing Judy Hall and Cheryl Ray, both of who had requested reappointment. Judy Hall is the wife of mayor pro tem Ricky Hall.

Graham Historical Museum Board – reappointing her husband, Chuck Talley, and adding James Mullen; in the process, she did not include Jeanette Beaudry, who had requested reappointment.

Graham Housing Authority – to appoint Robert Sykes, in lieu of Evelyn Graves-Curtis, who had requested reappointment. Also seeking appointment was Lisa Kyle Moser.

Historic Resources Commission – to appoint Terry Correira and Jim Young to fill two vacancies. In doing so, she omitted Jeanette Beaudry, who had requested reappointment.

Councilman Bobby Chin had earlier asked to reduce the size of the commission from seven to five members, but city attorney Bob Ward said that a public hearing would be required before doing so.

The council determined to set such a hearing for its next meeting, in August, but to appoint only enough members (Correira and Young) to fill out a five-member board.

Planning Board/Board of Adjustment – to reappoint John Wooten; to recommend to the county commissioners the reappointment of ETJ member Chad Huffine; and to add James Stockert.

Chin described Stockert as a retired deputy county manager and urged his appointment. Chin is a former planning board member who was elected to the city council in 2021.

Not reappointed was Eric Crissman, who had sought reappointment.

The council did not comment on Jeanette Beaudry, Terry Correira, James Mullen, or Jim Young, applicants who also requested appointment to the planning board. Correira, Mullen, and Young were appointed to other boards.

See separate story on removing the mayor’s critics from advisory boards: https://alamancenews.com/mayors-critics-removed/

Recreation Commission – Talley’s “slate” also included three proposed reappointments to the recreation commission: Casey Johnson, Brian Cutlip, and Carmen Larimore. Also seeking appointments were Benjamin Beushausen and Patrick Burnette.

After she concluded her outline of her motion to appoint the slate, Alamance News publisher Tom Boney, Jr. questioned whether it was appropriate for mayor Talley and mayor pro tem Hall to vote on a motion including the proposed reappointment of their spouses.

When Talley posed the question to city attorney Bob Ward, he responded that it would be “better not to.”

Talley then revised her motion to delete the appointments to the Appearance Commission/Tree Board, which had included Hall’s wife, and the Graham Historical Museum Board, which had included her husband’s reappointment.

The motion on the remainder of the slate was a unanimous 5-0 vote.

Talley then made the motion to reappoint Judy Hall and Cheryl Ray to the Appearance Commission/Tree Board. Ricky Hall asked to be recused from the vote, which then passed 4-0.

Hall then made the motion to reappoint Chuck Talley to the Graham Historical Museum Board and add James Mullen, skipping over Jeanette Beaudry who had sought reappointment. Talley recused herself from that vote, which passed 3-1.

Voting against was councilman Joey Parsons, who expressed disappointment that Beaudry had not been included for reappointment. Parsons, who serves as the council liaison member to the museum board, said he felt Beaudry had made valuable contributions to the board.

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