Experience of NC water fund chief raises questions

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) – Environmentalists are expressing concern that a Republican appointee named to oversee North Carolina’s Clean Water Management Trust Fund doesn’t meet the legally required qualifications for the job.

Bryan Gossage began work Nov. 5 as director of the state’s Office of Land and Water Stewardship, making $78,000 a year.

The taxpayer-supported fund buys environmentally sensitive land for conservation and supports other clean water initiatives. State law requires its director to have “experience and training in conservation, protection, and management of surface water resources.”

Gossage has a bachelor’s degree in sociology and has worked in marketing and public relations.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources spokesman Drew Elliot said Gossage is qualified because he served six years as a town councilman in Apex, which included oversight of a municipal water treatment plant.

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