By Richard Sullins |

Changes in personnel were on the minds of the Lee County Board of Commissioners Monday, as the board selected Assistant Lee County Manager Lisa Minter as the next county manager. Minter will fill the shoes of outgoing County Manager Dr. John Crumpton, who announced in November he would retire at the end of February.

Minter will be offered a 2-year employment contract at the rate of $185,000 per year. She served as the county’s finance director for many years and was promoted to assistant county manager during a reorganization a few months ago.

Crumpton also announced that Director of County Development Services Santiago Giraldo will be leaving his position at the end of December. Giraldo has been the point-person for Lee County’s capital improvement projects, from planning through construction. He is a U.S. Army veteran whose last posting was at Fort Bragg.

Robert Walters has been promoted to director of the general services department following the retirement of Russell Spivey last week. With Walters’ experience in construction, the Development Services office will be moved under his supervision.

Human Resources Director Joyce McGehee will be retiring at the end of January. Meta McCune, who has been serving as the human resources analyst, will step into the HR director role on February 1.

Lee County has about 30 vacant positions today and they can be found here.

Lee provides assistance to Moore County after power outage

Crumpton informed Lee County commissioners on Monday that local government provided assistance to Moore County within hours after attacks on electrical service substations on Saturday night in Carthage and West End. Linemen continue attempts to restore electrical service to more than 40,000 customers who may remain without heating or lighting until Thursday.

Crumpton said he had talked with Moore County manager Wayne Vest Monday morning to see what they need and he learned that Lee County’s emergency services division sent a trailer filled with emergency response supplies within hours after the attacks took place.

Moore County Sheriff Ronnie Fields said on Monday that “the person, or persons, who did this knew exactly what they were doing.”

The FBI and the SBI have joined local law enforcement in investigating the crime. A spokesperson for the National Security Council in Washington, John Kirby, has called the incidents “intentional vandalism” but investigators have not ruled out domestic terrorism as the cause.

Crumpton said Moore County was the first to arrive in Lee County in April 2011 after tornados caused millions of dollars in damages “and I felt like we needed to return the favor. We have trailers that are equipped with generators, portable lights, and other things essential in these kinds of circumstances and we have offered these as well.”

Monday’s meeting of the commissioners was held at noon so as not to conflict with the Sanford Christmas parade later in the day. The final meeting of the year for the county commissioners will be 6 p.m. on December 19 in the Dennis A. Wicker Civic Center.

Organizational meeting

This was the first meeting for the full board since the election on November 8. Four seats were up for grabs that day and Republicans were successful in defending the three seats that kept them in the majority. The only new face among the group is Republican Taylor Vorbeck, who replaced the retiring Arianna Lavallee in District 4.

Vorbeck and Chairman Kirk Smith, also a Republican, were sworn in by state Senator Jim Burgin and North Carolina Democratic Leader Representative Robert Reives II was on hand to administer the oath to his father, Democratic Commissioner Robert Reives Sr. Clerk to the Board Hailey Hall had previously sworn in Republican Dr. Andre Knecht to a new four year term.

The board re-elected Smith to serve as chairman and Knecht was chosen as vice chairman.