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City of Charlotte CFO unexpectedly leaving job

Sources tell WBTV that City of Charlotte CFO Kelly Flannery is leaving her job Friday.
Sources tell WBTV that City of Charlotte CFO Kelly Flannery is leaving her job Friday.(WBTV)
Updated: Jul. 9, 2021 at 8:00 AM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - The Chief Financial Officer for the City of Charlotte is unexpectedly leaving her job. According to sources who spoke with WBTV on the condition of anonymity, CFO Kelly Flannery’s last day is Friday.

Flannery’s departure comes a little more than two years after she accepted the position. In her role, Flannery helped oversee the accounting of all funds for the city and strategically directed day-to-day financial operations.

Recently, a WBTV Investigation into the cost of Charlotte’s Transformational Mobility Network revealed emails from Flannery that indicated a disagreement with City Manager Marcus Jones.

In one email, Flannery wrote she would prefer to share new financial assumptions they had discussed about the mobility plan, but her attempt was thwarted by Jones.

“I still contend until we know what we’re doing on the city side it is irresponsible and a waste of time to contemplate external components, the Manager would like a call with the group for me to share our existing ‘model’,” Flannery wrote.

She wrote she would comply “in the spirit of following directions.”

Charlotte CFO Kelly Flannery writes that she will listen to City Manager Marcus Jones "in the...
Charlotte CFO Kelly Flannery writes that she will listen to City Manager Marcus Jones "in the spirit of following directions."(WBTV)

A spokesperson for the city said that Flannery’s email is about internal dialogues between city staffers and was focused on financial modeling, not what information would be shared publicly.

In another email Flannery wrote “The manager killed what I had whiteboarded. He didn’t like that approach. I can’t tell you what you can offer the county and the towns without knowing what we need first.”

The email was in response to Assistant City Manager Taiwo Jaiyeoba who wrote that the city needed to start sharing financial information quickly with towns regarding the Transformational Mobility Network.

“We really need to have info that we can share with our partner towns and County as soon as possible,” Jaiyeoba wrote.

Responding to an urgent email from the Assistant City Manager, CFO Kelly Flannery wrote that...
Responding to an urgent email from the Assistant City Manager, CFO Kelly Flannery wrote that City Manager Marcus Jones "killed what I had whiteboarded."(WBTV)

During the June 28th council meeting, Flannery was not part of the group presenting new financial information regarding the Transformational Mobility Network. On June 21st WBTV interviewed Special Assistant to the City Manager Shawn Heath and Jaiyeoba regarding the investigation into the price tag of the mobility network. The city did not make Flannery available.

It’s not clear why Flannery is leaving the City but sources tell WBTV she does not have another job immediately lined up.

Sources who spoke with WBTV said there was disappointment she was leaving as she was one of the most trusted and talented staffers working for the city.

Flannery has provided important financial information to councilmembers and the public regarding the city’s MLS deal, the mobility network, the city’s budget and debt capacity.

An email from City Manager Marcus Jones sent to his Senior Leadership team said that Flannery has asked to resign her position in May but the Jones had convinced her to stay on through the end of the fiscal year.

Deputy Chief Finacial Officer Teresa Smith assumes the role of Chief Financial Officer/Finance Department Director upon Kelly leaving.

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