All mayoral duties for one local town have now been handed over to that town's Mayor Pro-Tem.
Bethel Mayor Mike Whitehurst abruptly resigned on Monday. Thursday night, elected leaders met to discuss the town's next moves.
Two big pieces of new information came to us once the Commissioners returned from closed session.
First, Mayor Pro-Tem Gloristine Brown was handed over all mayoral duties in a unanimous vote. Second, we got a copy of Whitehurst's three page, very passionate resignation letter.
It's a deliberate, blunt, and honest resignation letter.
Whitehurst used words like "travesty" and "smug" to describe the handling of various issues by he and the Commissioners.
The letter also highlighted the unfair treatment of Town Clerk Vicki Hall and, in his own words, reclaiming his honor by resigning as Bethel's Mayor.
Gloristine Brown said, "To me it's not a happy occasion because he did a very good job, very good job in this town. So, it's nothing that we want to celebrate."
What Gloristine Brown isn't celebrating is her new responsibility of leading the town.
Brown said, "I'm sort of like the veteran on the board, and I was holding the position as Mayor Pro-Tem. I'm glad that they feel like I can, but I will do my best, and that's all I know to do."
Bethel residents at the meeting wouldn't speak to WITN on camera, but say Whitehurst was a good mayor and that they're surprised by the resignation.
Two other positions also need replaced, including Town Clerk Vicki Hall and the mayor's wife, Deputy Clerk Sue Whitehurst. Both are resigning effective March 7th.
Brown says the Commissioners haven't discussed whether she is filling the mayor role on an interim basis or long-term.
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