Town scales back board meetings

Published 6:35 pm Thursday, June 15, 2017

BELHAVEN — The Town of Belhaven will now hold its Board of Aldermen meetings once a month.

The new schedule will begin in July. Meetings will be held on the second Monday of every month.

Alderman Amos Wilson suggested the change at Monday night’s meeting, saying he doesn’t think there is enough town business to warrant meeting twice a month.

Alderman Ricky Credle seconded Wilson’s motion, and it passed 3-1.

Alderman Steve Carawan was the one dissenting vote. Some residents viewed the move as an attempt to limit Mayor Adam O’Neal’s criticisms launched against board members during town meetings.

O’Neal was out of town and did not attend Monday’s meeting, so Mayor Pro Tempore Greg Satterthwaite presided over the meeting.

Town Manager Woody Jarvis said he thinks the town will still be able to conduct its business properly. Around Thanksgiving and Christmas, the board often ends up meeting once a month anyway, he said, so meeting only on the second Monday would fall in line with the end-of-the-year schedule.

“I think particularly during the summer, you know, it is a big sacrifice of everybody’s time to get prepared and conduct a town council meeting twice a month,” Jarvis said. “We can do it either way, but I think we can be just as effective with one meeting a month.”