By MICAH HENRY
The Taylorsville Mayor and Town Council members met for a brief open session and then went into an extended closed session on Thursday, Oct. 26.
A public notice about the meeting, placed by Mayor George Holleman in The Times October 25, noted that the council would hold a closed session at the meeting, citing General Statute 143-318.11(a)(1) and (6) to discuss confidential/personnel information.
A few members of the public and press attended the brief open session portion of the meeting. Mayor Holleman called the meeting to order about 1:20 p.m. Councilman Jack Simms gave the invocation and Councilwoman Kim Brown led the Pledge of Allegiance to the United States Flag.
The agenda was quickly approved and the council voted to go immediately into closed session. Thus, the audience was ushered out of the Council Chambers.
Nearly two hours passed, during which time the Mayor and Council reportedly held a video conference remote meeting with the State Auditor’s Office, regarding the audit of the town’s finances which has been underway for several months.
No action was taken in the closed session.
After the meeting adjourned, the Council and Mayor left Town Hall and didn’t respond to requests for comment as they left the premises.
Town Attorney Monroe Pannell stated that the matters at Thursday’s meeting could not be discussed publicly due to their confidential nature.
Town Council candidate Megan Hefner Fishel and Mayor candidate Cyle Emke expressed their displeasure with the proceedings afterward.
“I’m frustrated because there’s no transparency and no honesty. The way I look at it is, if you are in a government seat, doesn’t matter what seat, there should never be anything to hide from the public. After people stood out here waiting for comments to be made, we got nothing…I’m a citizen of this town. I pay taxes in this town. I want to know where our money is being spent. If there’s mishandling of funds, or whatever is going on, I, as a citizen want to know. Not just as a Town Council candidate,” said Fishel.
“This is the whole reason I ran. I’ve never cared for politics,” said Emke. “I just want transparency in the town.”