Garland leaders continue public works search

By: By Chase Jordan -

GARLAND — Town leaders are in the transition phase of selecting new personnel and leaders for public works.

Commissioners held a special meeting Thursday night to discuss personnel and contract issues. Prior to going into a closed session, a resignation letter from public works employee Austin Brown, was read aloud by Town Clerk Pamela Cashwell. He was selected for the position in December 2014 and began work the following month. Some of his duties included maintenance in Garland and monitoring wells and sewer pumps. Brown’s last day is Friday, April 8.

“I have enjoyed my time working for the town and hope that I can be of assistance later in the future,” Brown wrote in his letter. “I hope the town continues to grow and improve the way it is now. Great things are happening in my hometown and I will always call Garland home.”

Brown’s resignation letter was accepted by the commission board.

Garland leaders are also in the process of trying to find a public works director. In January, town leaders began searching for someone to fill the position after severing ties with Envirolink, a public works management service. Town leaders wanted to have someone to work on a full-time basis to supervise public works employees.

A couple of candidates have been considered for the position. One was hired, but only worked a week. Previously, it was noted that the selected individual would be over performing administrative, technical, and supervisory work in planning and directing the activities of the water and sewer utilities which include the distribution and collection systems and the wastewater treatment plant.

Envirolink specializes in water management and other public work services for customers throughout North Carolina. For five years, the town used the management company for services. It’s unknown if town will go back to using their services. A contract between Garland and Envirolink expired Friday, April 1.

In addition to employees, commissioners Ralph smith and Mayor Pro Tem Haywood Johnson also assist with Public Works functions through a committee. Johnson also oversees the town streets with the assistance of Commissioner S.J. Smith. Due to lack of personnel in Garland, elected commissioners are picked to assist with matters such as finances, safety, parks, recreation and buildings.

New deputy in town

Adam West was recently introduced as the new sheriff’s deputy to assist with safety throughout town.

The Sampson County native patrols the Garland area and will soon takeover duties for Deputy Adam Reiger. So far, he’s enjoying his time there. He’s also a local firefighter.

“I enjoy helping other people, volunteering and helping my community as much as I can,” West said. “It just seems like this side was another step towards that direction.”

He advises people to keep a careful watch for possible dangers or issues and to contact local authorities.

Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.

By Chase Jordan

Garland officials discuss town matters during a meeting. officials discuss town matters during a meeting.

Reach Chase Jordan at 910-249-4617. Follow us on Twitter at @SampsonInd and like us on Facebook.