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City#8217;s finance director resigns

Christine Ledford, the city’s finance director, submitted her resignation earlier this week.

Interim City Manager Jim Vacalis, when reached at home Friday evening, would not comment on the resignation, but only confirm that she had, indeed, resigned.

Ledford could not be reached for comment before the News-Herald deadline, and a visit to city hall Friday afternoon found that she had already cleared her office. An employee in the Finance Department confirmed that Ledford would not be returning.

The move came less than two months after the preliminary results of an independent financial analysis were released. The review, which used city audits and financial documents, found that while the city’s revenue collection is on point, a number of funds showed deficits or no cash at all, among other concerns.

Neither Ledford nor her staff were privy to that analysis. Some council members, including Charles Brown and Leroy Bennett, said then that Ledford and her staff should have been afforded the chance to offer answers and explanations. Brown said the financial experts have been with the city for some seven years, there have never been problems with the annual audit, and the bond rates have continually gone up.

Mayor Linda Johnson and Council members Charles Parr and Curtis Milteer all declined to comment, saying Ledford’s resignation is a personnel issue that should be addressed

only by Vacalis.

“Council has nothing to do with the city manager’s employees,” Milteer said.

None of the other council members or assistant city managers could be reached before the News-Herald deadline.

ashley.taylor@suffolknewsherald.com