Richfield Town Commission looks for legal advice from new interim attorney

The Richfield Town Commission decided at a special meeting called Thursday night to go a different direction with its legal counsel.

“With the land use plan and the things we are going through, and there are concerns brought up by residents, I tried to go to the League of Municipalities or the N.C. School of Government,” Mayor Ian Focht said.

When he did so, he continued, the advice from the groups was the same.

“Don’t take our word for it; ask your attorney,” Focht said.

Focht said he tried several times to reach out to the town’s previous attorney, Charles Brown, but could not get a meeting with him.

“There’s been lots of times when I’m trying to get answers to everybody who sends me emails or asked me questions, and I had no one to go to,” Focht said.

At the short meeting, the board decided by a vote of 4-0 to use Connie Josey of First Street Legal in Albemarle on an interim basis. Josey also serves as the attorney for the city of Locust. Commissioner Barry Byrd did not attend the meeting, which was the reason for the final vote tally.

Focht said he has spoken with Luke Lowry, a regional planner with Centralina, about some items including organizing a planning board for the town.

“I’ve got to have someone to get some legal advice,” Focht said.