RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — A small Wayne County town could soon regain administrative control of its finances from the state.

N.C. Deputy Treasurer Sharon Edmundson attended a meeting of the Pikeville Town Commission on Monday to deliver the news, according to a Wednesday news release from the state government.

Pikeville — with a population around 700 — was once considered among the most financially troubled government units in North Carolina, the release states.

A resolution will be presented at the December 6 meeting of the Local Government Finance Division to end state control and revert financial control back to the town.

If the Local Government Commission (LGC) adopts the resolution, LGC staff currently serving as appointed deputy finance officers would be replaced by town staff. However, LGC personnel would continue to provide guidance and oversight to the town.

“I appreciate the hard work of the LGC staff and the town’s efforts to coordinate and cooperate on a plan to revive Pikeville,” Secretary Edmundson said. “This is truly a success story.”

State Treasurer Dale R. Folwell, chair of the LGC, said town officials were able to snap back from dire straits by rolling up their sleeves, putting in the long hours and accepting the guidance and assistance of LGC experts, according to the release.

“Pikeville officials understood the dilemma they were facing. They channeled their energy into finding out what’s right, getting it right and keeping it right. They stepped up to serve taxpayers and residents, safeguard their finances and restore public confidence,” Folwell said. “This extraordinary reversal of fortunes is a testament to their dedication, and evidence that the LGC serves a unique and vital role in guiding local governments toward good governance, transparency and accountability.”

Among its successes, Pikeville:

  • Completed and submitted fiscal year 2020 and 2021 audits to the LGC, and prepared fiscal year 2022 financial statements for audit.
  • Worked with LGC staff over the past two years to apply for and receive over $5 million in American Rescue Plan Act, water and wastewater grants.
  • Accepted guidance from LGC staff on the importance of budgeting and timely and accurately maintaining financial accounts.
  • Worked diligently and collaboratively with LGC staff to understand the important financial responsibilities of the Town Board and staff, putting the town on a path of fiscal health and effective fiscal management. Staff and elected leaders have attended finance training to help them better understand their fiscal responsibilities.