Political newcomer Mac ’Bear“ Hodges was sworn in Monday night as Washington’s new mayor.
Hodges ran unopposed for the seat after Archie Jennings decided not to run for a third term.
Hodges says his vision for the city is to bring money in and thinks tourism can play a big part.
Hodges thinks with the beautiful waterfront, Washington can become a destination for weddings and all the revenue that can create.
Hodges says, ”That’s what’s driving me. I’m looking at any way we possibly can bring money into Beaufort County where there are jobs, and you know tourism, weddings, whatever brings money in.“
Which means spending some to change the landscape of the city.
Hodges says, ”One place I want to work on is Haven’s Gardens. A lot of things have been there for 40- 50 years and it’s old an that’s another place we could have weddings if we could get that updated.“
And even if this is his first public service role -- he’s not afraid to admit he’ll have a lot to learn. He says, ”I know quite bit about a little bit, some about a lot of it and nothing about a whole bunch of stuff.“
Jennings says after four years on council and four as mayor, it was time to move on. He says, ”A healthy exchange among leadership is important. We don’t have enough of that in government, and unfortunately it takes a voluntary action in most cases for one leader to say my time has come and it’s time for someone else to step up.“
Jennings said his greatest achievement was being able to keep Washington’s economy stable during the recession early on in his first term.
As far as his future in politics. Jennings says, ”I hope I get a chance to serve again in some capacity. I don’t have a plan in that regard, but I feel that I’m still in a position to give back to the community and I look forward to doing that in some form or fashion.“