NC speaker OKs payments to resigning staffers

North Carolina House Speaker Thom Tillis (Official Photo)

May 17, 2012 3:44:45 PM PDT
N.C. House Speaker Thom Tillis has authorized payments equal to a month's salary for two high-level staffers who resigned after their relationships with lobbyists became public.

Tillis defended giving former chief of staff Charles Hobbs and policy advisor Amy Hobbs more than $19,000, telling ABC11 the money takes into account families who were affected by the abrupt job losses. He said Hobbs is a single mother.

"In December of 2010 and January of 2011, Charles Thomas worked without pay and did not accept the State Health Plan benefits for himself or his family during his tenure as Chief of Staff," said Tillis in a statement. "Amy Hobbs also worked without pay in January of 2011.  They both accepted salaries below that of their peers in state government for a period of three months in early 2011 and were instrumental in overseeing the most time-efficient long session in modern history, saving thousands of taxpayer dollars.  I accepted their resignations because their personal choices were not acceptable in my office.  I recognized that their jobs and careers were forever affected by their choices, and that serious family obligations still existed for each of them.  I stand by my decision to accept their resignation while recognizing the difficult transition period they are now entering."

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