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Hearing officer reappointed
Two commissioners absent for 2-1 vote
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Forsyth County News

 

A Forsyth County commission missing two members reappointed the civil service board's longtime hearing officer Thursday night.

With Commissioners Pete Amos and Jim Boff absent, the commission voted 2-1 to approve attorney Dana Miles for a year-long appointment.

Leading up to the decision, cost and conflict of interest had surfaced as two points of discussion as the commission weighed whether to reappoint Miles at his rate of $260 per hour.

The price tag sounded high to some commissioners, who suggested putting the position out to a bid. Others said the current hourly rate is fair.

Discussion of a potential conflict revolved around another of Miles' roles. He serves as the city attorney for Cumming, which has been in litigation with the county in the past.

On Thursday, Commission Chairman Brian Tam and Commissioner Patrick Bell voted in favor of the appointment, while Commissioner Todd Levent was opposed.

County Attorney Ken Jarrard said though the commission was smaller, three members represents a quorum, or the minimum number required to "do the business of the county."

For the reappointment to pass, it needed the majority vote of a quorum, Jarrard said, which in this case was two commissioners. The discussion began when the civil service board asked that Miles' appointment be for one year, rather than per hearing, as is written in the local state law.

The county is in the process of updating and changing that law, including a provision that appointments be annual.