McClatchy’s Insider has some reporting today that may be of special interest to some of our readers here in Moore County:
The Division of Motor Vehicles still hasn’t released the name of an employee who, according to a recent state audit, has engaged in side business with companies he regulates for the state and subsequently faces disciplinary action.But an information trail leads to the son of a former gubernatorial candidate. Wes Little, a law enforcement officer at the DMV who received a demotion last year, has the same employment status, town of residence and business relationships as the unnamed employee implicated in the report last week from State Auditor Beth Wood’s office. Wes Little is the son of George Little, a Republican who ran for governor in 2004 and remains active in state politics. The audit report describes a DMV employee who didn’t disclose to the state that he sold fire extinguishers to auto dealerships he regulated in his role with the state.
It’s a situation where he might have been in a position to pressure those businesses for sales, or to overlook violations in the interest of maintaining customers, the report notes.The audit does not identify him but does note his involvement with the Southern Pines Fire and Rescue Department, whose website lists Wes Little as a volunteer firefighter.
It also notes that the fire extinguisher business is registered to the employee’s wife. According to the secretary of state’s database, Little Fire Extinguisher Sales and Service of Southern Pines is registered to Teresa Hall Little. The business’ address is the same as what’s listed on Wes Little’s voter registration form.A call placed to Wes and Teresa Little at a number connected to their home and business was not returned. The audit report included a statement from Department of Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson thanking Wood for the report and saying “appropriate action will be taken.”DMV spokeswoman Marge Howell said Wednesday that she could release “no further details about the audit at this time” but said previously that disciplinary action against the employee was under way. According to the News & Observer’s state employee salary database, Wes Little has been with the Department of Transportation since July 1989, makes $62,735 a year in his state role and was demoted in October with a salary reduction of $6,970. The database lists the reason for the demotion as “personal conduct.” Requests for further information about that demotion have gone unfulfilled. (Benjamin Brown, THE INSIDER, 2/04/16).[…]