The Chief of Staff for House Speaker Thom Tillis (R-Mecklenburg) resigned in April after it was disclosed he was having an affair with a lobbyist for the homebuilders association. According to the Raleigh News and Observer, Charles Thomas was then given a check for $12,500 out of public funds. Then policy adviser Amy Hobbs resigned after she told the Speaker she also had an affair with a lobbyist. The N&O reports Hobbs was paid over $6,800 after she left, also from public funds. When asked to justify those payments Tillis said they received no notice of termination. He later released a written statement.
“In December of 2010 and January of 2011, Charles Thomas worked without pay and did not accept the State Health Plan benefits for himself or his family during his tenure as Chief of Staff. Amy Hobbs also worked without pay in January of 2011. They both accepted salaries below that of their peers in state government for a period of three months in early 2011 and were instrumental in overseeing the most time-efficient long session in modern history, saving thousands of taxpayer dollars. I accepted their resignations because their personal choices were not acceptable in my office. I recognized that their jobs and careers were forever affected by their choices, and that serious family obligations still existed for each of them. I stand by my decision to accept their resignation while recognizing the difficult transition period they are now entering.” – Thom Tillis
That didn’t satisfy the press and they pressed him further outside his office:
A year ago Thomas and Hobbs were among Tillis staffers who were given pay raises. Tillis said they deserved the raises for doing their jobs well.