Tim Moore’s aide left his job, but collected pay for eight more months
Last April, state lawmakers, legislative staff and lobbyists used Facebook and Twitter to wish Mitch Gillespie, a senior policy adviser for House Speaker Tim Moore, a happy retirement.
“There is a huge Void in Raleigh today created by the retirement of Mitch Gillespie,” tweeted Rep. John Torbett, a Gaston County Republican, on April 23. “Gonna take quite a long while to fill, if that’s even possible. Best to you Mitch. Go live it, you earned it.”
By then, Gillespie had spent 14 years as a state lawmaker, followed by two years as an assistant Department of Environmental Quality secretary and a little more than three years advising Moore on environmental issues. Only the last two jobs were full time.
But after Gillespie, 59, of McDowell County, left the legislature in April, he continued to receive his paycheck. All told, he collected $81,700 in pay, state records show, and then he reported he was owed another $12,400 in unused leave. Those records show his last day as an employee was Dec. 31, 2018.
Gillespie’s interactions with DEQ are now the subject of a complaint to the state ethics board filed by a Washington, D.C.,-based government watchdog, the Campaign for Accountability.
In both cases, Moore said he wasn’t aware of Gillespie’s efforts on his behalf.