FLORENCE, S.C. (WBTW) — The Florence Housing Authority board approved a 2023-24 budget resolution Thursday morning that includes a 2% pay raise for the agency’s employees.
The unanimous vote came during an emergency meeting of the Board of Commissioners.
The authority employs more than 70 people and provides affordable housing opportunities across Florence, Marlboro and Chesterfield counties. It owns or manages nearly 1,100 public housing units, according to its website.
The authority has dealt with a series of personnel issues and other problems in recent months.
In June, the board met in an executive session and discussed potentially offering someone the agency’s new interim director position. News13 reported in May that Alphonso Bradley had been named the authority’s new executive director.
After the executive session, the authority’s board did not say whether the interim position replaces Bradley or if it’s an additional position. The authority had been without a director since March when Clamentine Elmore was put on paid leave and later fired. The reason for her firing has not been released.
In March, Human Resources Director Justin Hanna was fired and another board member, Elishann Redden, resigned, citing health reasons.
Then, in April, board member Linda Becote was removed in a unanimous vote by Florence City Council, which is responsible for making appointments to the Housing Authority board. An affidavit presented at the meeting said a $1,400 check from the Housing Authority that was signed by Becote went to her catering business to pay for a party for Elmore.
There were also accusations that Becote used “special treatment” in the way her home was maintained and repaired. Becote lived in one of the properties owned by the Housing Authority.
At the time, Becote’s attorney, John Bledsoe of Hartsville, called the allegations “falsehoods” and said he planned to appeal her removal to the South Carolina Supreme Court.
In addition, the Creekside Apartments, which the authority maintains, was found to have mold in 30 of its 100 units, forcing many residents to be displaced and housed in hotels and other temporary living locations.
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Dennis Bright is a Digital Producer at News13. He joined the team in May 2021. Dennis is a West Virginia native and a graduate of Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. Follow Dennis on, Facebook, X, formerly Twitter, and read more of his work here.