By Jesse Wood
On Friday, Boone Mayor Andy Ball announced that he is resigning. His last day in office will be July 31.
In his resignation letter to the community of Boone, Ball said that he is relocating to Asheville, where his fiancée, Marcie, “was born and raised, to live in the same city as our family as we prepare to start our own.”
Ball was elected mayor on his 31st birthday on Nov. 5, 2013. This was after he served four years on the Boone Town Council while he was a student at Appalachian State University – at the urging of former Mayor Loretta Clawson.
“For the last 7 years, I have dedicated my life to serving the citizens of Boone. We are seeing record investment in our community with a spike in mixed-use development we have encouraged for years. We are nearing the final stages of our water infrastructure project that will ensure we can provide clean water to our residents and access to water for Blowing Rock, ASU and Watauga County,” Ball wrote.
“When times have gotten tough, we’ve stood with our neighborhoods and prevailed, as we did last month in the Templeton case. When Boone ETJ protections were threatened, we stood up for residents in court, and expect a decision soon. We have accomplished so much by working together and being bold enough to try it a new way.”
Interestingly enough, today was the last day of candidate filing for municipal elections across the state. Ball said that he contacted Watauga County Elections Director Matt Snyder about opening a special filing period for his replacement.
Ball had a couple years left on his term.
On Friday afternoon, Snyder, who has only been on the job for a few weeks, said that he is double checking with the State Board of Elections for clarification on this matter.
However, Snyder said that the Boone Town Council will consider an interim mayor at its next council meetings. This person would serve until the citizens of Boone elect a new mayor in November.
Snyder added that the Watauga County Board of Elections will add this item for opening a special candidate filing period for the mayoral race to the board’s meeting next Tuesday at noon, which also happens to be the time that the new three-member elections board is sworn in.
“I am not sure how long the filing period will be whether it’s one week or two weeks,” Snyder said.
In his letter, Ball said, “It is critically important that we honor the public trust by putting this decision in the hands of Boone voters rather than wait several more months, which would result in an appointment that would last another two years,
In conclusion, Ball professed his eternal love of Boone and a said it was an honor and privilege to represent the town.
“I love Boone, and I always will. It has been my honor and an enormous privilege to represent you across our community, Raleigh and in Washington,” Ball said. “I look forward to supporting all that is ahead for the town we love.”
Click on letter below for bigger, clearer image.