Council seat changes hands

New face appears on Mount Holly City Council

by Alan Hodge

The newest Mount Holly City Council member Jason Gowen (left) shakes hands with former council member Benny Brookshire. Brookshire’s term ended in December. (Alan Hodge/MIM photo)

New Mount Holly City Council member Jason Gowen took his seat at the dais for the first time earlier this month, replacing former member Bennie Brookshire.

Senior Resident Superior Court judge Jesse B. Caldwell III swore Gowen into office during the council’s Dec. 12 meeting. Brookshire did not seek reelection.

“I’m looking forward to helping the city and making Mount Holly a great place to work, play, and live,” Gowen said. “I’m extremely excited.”

Brookshire received warm wishes from his friends, family, and council members. Mayor Bryan Hough presented Brookshire with a framed proclamation praising his four years on the council.

“It has always been a pleasure to work with Bennie,” Hough said. “He is a true gentleman.”

Mayor Bryan Hough (left) presents former Mount Holly City Councilman Benny Brookshire with a plaque honoring his past four years of service on the council. Brookshire did not seek reelection and will be replaced by political newcomer Jason Gowen. (Alan Hodge/MIM photo)

Brookshire said he felt touched by all the well-wishes he received.

“I want to thank all the citizens who elected me,” he said. “I also want to thank everyone who works for the city that does such a good job.”

In addition to Gowen, others who were sworn in during the meeting included incumbents Carolyn Breyare and Perry Toomey, as well as Hough.

Although Mount Hollydays organizer Carol Featherstone was scheduled to present a monetary donation to the Mount Holly Community Relief Organization, Featherstone told the council that the funds from the event are still being tallied due to its success. The donation will be presented at another date.

“We had the largest crowd ever,” Featherstone said. “The businesses were slammed.”

Mount Holly Community Relief Organization did receive a donation of $8,166 from the Mount Holly Christmas Concert Choir. The choir’s director Jeff Ingle presented the check.

Appointments

Appointments made during the Dec. 12  meeting include:

• Council member David Moore was named Mayor Pro-Tem, and Kemp Michael was retained as city attorney. Other appointments included Amy Miller as city clerk, Kim Sturgis as tax collector, Africa Otis as finance officer and Martin Starnes & Associates as city auditors.

• Planning commission appointments included Bill Gary as Chairman, Carlton Broome as Vice-Chairman, and Myles Biggerstaff, Barry Rumfelt, Leroy Thorns, Jeff Meadows, Tom Springs III, Will Crist and Ernest Stowe Jr.

• Park and recreation commission appointees included Henry Massey as Chairman, Carl Baber as Vice-Chairman, Frances Springs, Marshall Huffstetler, Carolyn Breyare, Jamie Summerlin, Stewart Hare, David Moore, Aaron Suttenfield and Kevin Wilson.

Employee Service Awards

Fifteen City of Mount Holly employees were recognized at the Dec. 15 council meeting for their years of service. These included:

• Planning department: Greg Beal, 10 years; and Michael Butler, five years.

• Fire department: David Stevens, 15 years; and Terry Revis, five years.

• Parks and recreation department: Eric Mahaffey, five years.

• Police department: Robert Ellison, 10 years; David Belk, five years; and Taylor Hager, five years.

• Streets and solid waste department: David Clark, 20 years; and William Walker, five years.

• Utilities department: Bo Eller, 25 years; Timmy Davidson, 20 years; Gail Barker, 10 years; Brad Anthony, five years; and James Friday, five years.

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