New Atlantic Beach Town Manager defends his past - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

New Atlantic Beach Town Manager defends his past

Benjamin Quattlebaum Jr. has worked in New Jersey, Wilmington, North Carolina and most recently Washington D.C.  However, we've learned his time in Wilmington wasn't without controversy. Benjamin Quattlebaum Jr. has worked in New Jersey, Wilmington, North Carolina and most recently Washington D.C. However, we've learned his time in Wilmington wasn't without controversy.

ATLANTIC BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Atlantic Beach Mayor Jake Evans introduced the new Town Manager during a budget meeting Monday. 

For the first time, new Town Manager, Benjamin Quattlebaum Jr. sat with the town council as they compared the 2015 budget with the projected 2016 budget. 

Though not many were in the crowd. Mayor Jake Evans introduced Quattlebaum to the community members in attendance. 

Quattlebaum explained how he has more than 25 years of administrative experience with his primary background being in housing.

Quattlebaum has worked in New Jersey, Wilmington, North Carolina and most recently Washington D.C.

However, we've learned his time in Wilmington wasn't without controversy

Under Quattlebaum's leadership, the housing authority was audited and had to pay back nearly three quarters of a million dollars for misusing money. Soon after, his contract was not renewed. 

"If I had anything to do, with, I say, malfeasance, misappropriation, or the perception that it gave, how would I have been hired by HUD, the housing agency that provides funding to all housing authorities nationally?" Quattlebaum said. 

Quattlebaum further defended himself explaining the separation was mutual and he is still confident in his time spent there.

"I stand by that record, I think that in terms of all the years in the housing authority, that five-year time period, that we achieved some great successes, and had some great programs implemented in the city of Wilmington," Quattlebaum added. 

Mayor Jake Evans explained after doing research of their own, in their interview process, they did know of Quattlebaum's past headlines with the Housing Authority in Wilmington. 

However, after hearing his side of the story, Evans says they are confident they made the right choice, and he feels Quattlebaum is qualified for the job. 

Quattlebaum says he is ready to take what he's learned from the past, and put it to use in Atlantic Beach.

".. to make sure we are as transparent as possible, that we put in the kind of checks and balances, and accountability - that is necessary to ensure the public that their tax dollars are being well spent," Quattlebaum said. 

Quattlebaum doesn't expect the process to be easy.

"...and getting an accurate account of what we need to do to move forward, those are going to be the greatest challenges, that are going to take me a lot of time, and reconstructing a lot of that past history," Quattlebaum said. 

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