North Carolina Speaker Timothy Moore and friends were at the Queen’s Cup Steeplechase on April 29, 2017, having a “very fun time” according to State Rep. Andy Dulin, who posted the above photo.
Standing next to Moore is Miss Jennifer Gray, who is Moore’s fiancée.
We don’t know the state of the Moore-Gray relationship when this photo was taken. But we do know that one month before the horse race, Gray began work as the new associate general counsel at the Dept. of Insurance. A job that currently pays $87,150 a year.
We have reviewed North Carolina’s policy for selecting employees to fill vacant positions in state government. Among the requirements:
“Employment shall be offered based upon the job-related qualifications of applicants for employment using fair and valid selection criteria and not on political affiliation or political influence.” [Emphasis added.]
“Political influence occurs when political affiliation impacts the decision to hire or not to hire and the selection decision was not based on fair and valid selection criteria.”
“The individual selected for the position must be chosen from the pool of the most qualified applicants.”
We’ve sent the Dept. of Insurance a request for public records in the hopes of learning:
- Was the associate general counsel a new position?
- Was the position advertised?
- Were there other applicants for the position?
- Does Ms. Gray have a contract?
- Has the job changed in any way since she was hired?
You can read our entire public records request HERE.
Jennifer Gray has a relevant legal background, according to her LinkedIn. Prior to landing the associate general counsel’s job, she had been an attorney advocate for abused and neglected children in the nonprofit Guardian Ad Litem Program and an assistant district attorney for Wake County.
However, given the power of the speaker and his ability to influence state government, we think these are important questions to raise on behalf of taxpayers who pay the salaries of both Speaker Moore and Jennifer Gray. We’ll report on what the state tells us once we know more.
Checks and Balances Project is an investigative watchdog that seeks to hold government officials, lobbyists and corporate management accountable to the public. Funding for C&BP comes from sustainable economy philanthropies and donors.