Former Mayor Bill Wiggins will rejoin the Monterey Board of Aldermen after being sworn in Monday.
Members of the board voted 5-2 in favor of Wiggins but not without discussion of an alleged Tennessee Comptroller’s investigation.
“I actually contacted the Comptroller,” Mayor J.J. Reels said during the meeting. “And they said the only thing they are authorized to say and I am authorized to say is that it is an active and ongoing investigation. That’s what they told me I am allowed to say.”
Alderman Amy Martin was one of those to vote against Wiggins, bringing up the alleged “Bank Fraud” investigation. Martin said members of the Monterey Hometown Project told her of the situation.
“My question is, Mr. Wiggins, are you involved or is there any ongoing investigation regarding your administration from the state of Tennessee’s Comptroller’s Office regarding Monterey’s Hometown Project?” Martin said.
Wiggins said he has not been notified of any ongoing inquiries regarding the use of the town’s funds. But, Wiggins did confirm he was interviewed by the Comptroller’s Office in November.
“There were no indications that they were investigating me for fraud, or any misuse of money,” Wiggins said.
Alderman Alex Garcia was the other member to vote no. Garcia said his opinions stem from wanting the residents of Monterey to have a voice.
“Bill was voted out of office by the Monterey people,” Garcia said. “And, I don’t think we have any business putting him back on the board when Monterey has spoken.”
As the meeting came to a close, Aldermen Nathan Walker and Charles Looper both said it is time to move forward and work together for the people of Monterey. Garcia shared the same sentiment and said the aldermen need to work together regardless of opinion.