STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA                                                     BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

COUNTY OF HENDERSON                                                                                         FEBRUARY 10, 2006


The Henderson County Board of Commissioners met for a continuation of the regularly scheduled meeting held on Monday, February 6, 2006. The meeting was held at 9:00 a.m. in the Commissioners' Conference Room of the Henderson County Office Building.


Those present were:  Chairman Bill Moyer, Vice-Chairman Charlie Messer, Commissioner Larry Young, Commissioner Shannon Baldwin, Interim County Manager Justin Hembree, Assistant Interim County Manager Selena Coffey, and Clerk to the Board Elizabeth W. Corn.


Also present were: Public Information Officer Chris S. Coulson, Deputy Clerk to the Board Amy Brantley, and Margaret Street and Connie Rayfield of our Legal Department.


Absent were:  Commissioner Chuck McGrady and County Attorney C. Russell Burrell.



Chairman Moyer called the meeting back to order and welcomed all in attendance. He explained that in most of the Board’s closed sessions recently the Board had been discussing a replacement for County Manager David Nicholson who recently retired. The Board went through a several month process to try to get the best possible County Manager for Henderson County. He stated that there were many very good qualified candidates. The Board went through a careful process to evaluate all aspects of the procedure.  The Board came to a unanimous consensus as to who they thought would be the best future County Manager for Henderson County.  The decision was Mr. Steve Wyatt who was present at the meeting.



Steve has extensive experience in North Carolina, currently serving as the County Manager in Moore County. Prior to that he was the Deputy County Manager in Catawba County and prior to that was the County Manager in Polk County, south of us.  He has had a lot of experience in committees of the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners, being very involved in the key issues.  He has a tremendous record of accomplishments as a County Manager.  It was the strong feeling of the Board that with Steve working together with the other fine people in our management group, particularly Justin Hembree who is the Interim County Manager and Selena Coffey, who is the Interim Assistant County Manager, we will have an excellent management team to move this county forward in the future years.


Commissioner Young made the motion that the County contract to employ Steven D. Wyatt as County Manager, effective the tenth day of April 2006, at an annual salary of $130,000, pursuant to the terms of a previously negotiated contract. All voted in favor and the motion carried.


Chairman Moyer stated that Commissioner McGrady is out of town.  He wanted to try to get back to be at the meeting but was unable to do so.  He has been in all the meetings and discussions, as have all the Commissioners.  Commissioner McGrady asked Chairman Moyer to be sure to convey that he is 100% behind the decision and wished he was present to vote.


Signing of the Employment Contract

Steve Wyatt came forward and he and the Chairman signed two copies of the Employment Contract.


Chairman Moyer stated that by law we are only required to release the salary and certain other key terms in the agreement.  On behalf of the Board, Chairman Moyer talked with Mr. Wyatt and they think that the contract should be entirely open and available to the public.  Mr. Wyatt has signed a release form so the full contract will be available for the press and anyone who would like to see it. All parties involved want this to be above board.


Other Commissioners commented favorably on the hiring of Mr. Wyatt and thanked the other candidates for participating in the process. They also thanked David Nicholson (recently retired County Manager) for his service to the citizens of Henderson County.


Chairman Moyer stated that the employment contract provides that Steve Wyatt will begin work in Henderson County on April 10, 2006. Under his existing arrangement with Moore County, he is required to give 60 days notice. He then introduced Steven Wyatt to all the citizens of Henderson County, to make a few comments and welcomed him to Henderson County Government.


Steven Wyatt

He spoke briefly of the competition for the position of County Manager and stated that it was a humbling experience.  He also spoke of the good reputation of Henderson County officials and employees.  He is a native of Western North Carolina, having grown up in McDowell County (Marion, NC) and this feels like a homecoming for him. All these things contributed to the attraction to Henderson County. He stated that he felt the most integral part of North Carolina Government is county government.  “Something I’ve thought a lot about in making a career change is the challenge of managing people and trying to achieve outcomes.  I think the key here in Henderson County is to build upon what is here – this Board and the staff have set a good direction.  There certainly are going to be challenges to be met and obstacles to overcome but there’s going to be a lot of opportunity and I look forward to working with everybody including the almost 100,000 citizens of Henderson County to meet the challenges that will come our way.”



Commissioner Messer made the motion to adjourn the meeting.  All voted in favor and the motion carried.







Elizabeth W. Corn, Clerk to the Board                           William L. Moyer, Chairman