By Jesse Wood
Barring any last-minute special meetings, Mayor Andy Ball resided over his final Boone Town Council meeting on Thursday evening.
Ball announced his unexpected resignation, which is effective July 31, last Friday in a letter to the media. On Friday, Ball addressed “what came as a surprise” to many and offered a few more remarks.
Ball, who also served four years on the Boone Town Council prior to being elected mayor in 2013, said the past several years of service for the Town of Boone has been a “life-changing experience.”
Ball noted that he will always be proud of what was accomplished and said that he knew the community and council members would continue fighting for neighborhoods and protecting the natural environment in the High Country.
“So, I’m optimistic about the future for this board and the next one. I’m optimistic that a middle ground can always be found that mostly fits the needs of Boone’s diverse citizenry. You have the best staff of any municipal government in North Carolina to help along the way,” Ball said.
After reading his statement to those in attendance, Mayor Pro-Tem Rennie Brantz read a “resolution of appreciation” for Ball that was adopted by the Boone Town Council and handed him a plaque.
The resolution noted that Ball was a integral part in renovating the Downtown Boone Post Office, supporting the refurbishment campaign for the historic Appalachian Theatre; creating the Cultural Resources Department; and enhancing and improving the Boone Greenway Trail along the New River.
“Andy Ball has contributed much of his time to countless civic and charitable endeavors,” Brantz read. “ Now, therefore be it resolved that the Town Council for the Town of Boone does hereby express our sincere appreciation and thanks, as well as that of our citizens to Andy Ball for his distinguished service to the community.”
Ball received a warm applause and said, “Thank you all so much.”
Later in the meeting, the Boone Town Council was unanimous in not instituting an interim mayor. Mayor Pro-Tem Rennie Brantz will just continue in his title as mayor pro-tem and take over the duties that Ball handled.
Due Ball announcing his resignation on the last day of candidate filing for the 2015 municipal elections in the fall, the Watauga County Board of Elections are holding a special filing period for the mayoral race. In a twist in this year’s election, no one that filed to run in the Boone Town Council race is allowed to withdraw their name and file to run in the mayoral race.
The filing period began on Thursday at noon and runs through noon on Wednesday, July 29. So far only Brantz has filed for mayor.
Read Ball’s entire statement below: