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Spring Lake board approves appointment of new town attorney

Michael Porter’s contract must be approved by the Local Government Commission.


SPRING LAKE — The Spring Lake Board of Aldermen on Monday night approved the appointment of Michael Porter as the new town attorney.

The terms of the agreement, which is for two years, are subject to approval by the Local Government Commission. Either party may terminate the agreement without cause by giving a 30-day written notice, and it may also be terminated for cause with written notice. The services outlined in the agreement include attending board meetings, providing general procedural advice, contract development and review, police matters, public utility issues, personnel matters and other legal services.

The town will pay a monthly flat fee of $3,333.33, which will cover general communications and meetings with town personnel and the Board of Aldermen. For matters not listed in the agreement, the town agreed to pay $250 per hour for lawyers and $100 for paralegal time.

Porter has a law practice on Ramsey Street in Fayetteville that specializes in business and commercial law, personal injury and wrongful death, government and municipal law and other areas, according to his website.

The board unanimously approved his contract without discussion.

In other action, the board also unanimously approved a change in its meeting structure. Starting Sept. 1, the board will have a regular meeting each month and a work session.

Interim Town Manager Joe Durham told the board that separating the two monthly meetings into a regular meeting and a work session allowed for an increase in productivity and provided greater opportunities for discussion.

“The first meeting will be a regular meeting with all the new business, appointments and all relatable actionable items that would be moved by the board,’’ Durham said. “The second meeting of the month will be the work session that will include presentations and no action unless the board deems it to be appropriate.”

Durham said the work sessions would allow for presentations by staff, more detail into financial and audit reports and more in-depth conversation with opportunities for questions.

Mayor Kia Anthony also announced a new monthly event in town.

First Friday on Main will begin Aug. 5. Anthony said the town will close part of Main Street to allow for vendors, food trucks, entertainment and community fellowship from 6 to 9 p.m. Vendor applications will be on the town website in the next few days.

“This will be a monthly, reoccurring event that will bring some life to Spring Lake, bring some community engagement and let the town know we are working together to build a community,” Anthony said.

Fire Chief Jason Williams said town staff is meeting to address logistics. Anthony said she would be selecting committee members to serve before the event launch.

The board met in closed session for a little over two hours citing N.C. general statutes for personnel and attorney-client privilege. The board adjourned after coming back into open session without taking any action.

Town clerk Melissa Pereira, who turned in her resignation last week, did not join the board in the executive session. Her last day will be July 30.

Jami McLaughlin covers Spring Lake for CityView TODAY. She can be reached at jmclaughlin@cityviewnc.com. Have a news tip? Email news@CityViewTODAY.com.

Spring Lake, Board of Aldermen, town attorney, Michael Porter, First Friday on Main