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Spencer’s director of land management resigns

By Andie Foley
andie.foley@salisburypost.com

SPENCER — After the resignations of Spencer Alderman Howard White and Town Manager Terence Arrington, another town employee is saying goodbye.

Troy Powell, director of land management, announced Friday he has accepted a job with the city of Greensboro.

Powell, a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a master’s in public administration, will become manager of Greensboro’s code compliance division beginning June 3.

His last day with the town of Spencer will be May 31.

“My departure is probably quite different than the others,” Powell said with a laugh. “Mine was planned.”

He said he’d been recruited by Greensboro earlier this year, signing an offer of employment in late April. Though he had informed Arrington of his pending departure, he said he recently discovered the town board was unaware the he is leaving.

So he submitted a formal letter of resignation, included in an agenda packet for the town board’s Tuesday meeting.

“It has truly been a pleasure to have served you and citizens of the town of Spencer for the past three years,” Powell said in his letter, dated May 10. “Thank you for supporting me and the staff of the Land Management Department.”

Powell was appointed director of the Land Management Department in April 2016, having previously served 20 years in law enforcement.

The shift from law enforcement to city management came in an effort to “effect positive change in communities where revitalization and growth is desired,” Powell said.

As director, Powell managed planning, zoning, code enforcement, community and economic development, land use, and ordinance development. He oversaw three part-time code enforcement officers, though one of those positions is currently vacant.

In addition to these duties, Powell served as the staff liaison to the Planning and Zoning Board of Adjustment, Spencer Historic Preservation Commission and Community Appearance Commission. He also was a Spencer firefighter and emergency medical technician.

In Greensboro, his list of “hats” may shrink but the number of employees under his management will vastly increase. He’ll be overseeing 17,  he said.

“That’s the trade-off,” he said.

As Greensboro’s code compliance manager, Powell will oversee minimum housing codes, public nuisances cases and — to be determined — commercial codes.

The Randolph County resident said he’ll continue to commute. The change will add just 10 miles to his 32-mile daily commute.

Powell is credited with having helped develop a more equitable code-compliance process and clearing 27 dilapidated structures.

“Anytime you’re working in local government, you want to do your best and leave the place much better than you found it,” said Powell. “I’m always striving to perform my best in local government, and my goal is to be successful in that wherever I go.”

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