By LISA WHALEY
The Jonesborough Board of Mayor and Aldermen are short one member as of this week.
Jerome Fitzgerald, whose term as alderman was set to end in 2020, turned in his resignation Monday morning to pursue a spot as a Republican on the Washington County Commission. The county primary is set for May 1 with early voting to begin April 11. General election is Aug. 2.
“We did receive his resignation later,” Town Administrator Bob Browning confirmed Monday. “In our (town) charter, it states that if an alderman is running for county commission or a state office, they have to resign at the time of qualifying.”
Fitzgerald’s resignation was to be effective immediately.
That leaves the BMA to appoint a replacement, according to Town Mayor Kelly Wolfe.
“We hate to lose Jerome on the Board of Mayor and Aldermen,” Wolfe said. “He’s served a long time and has contributed much to Jonesborough’s success. We wish him well in future endeavors and I”m sure he will represent our town well on the county commission.”
According to the Washington County Election Commission, Fitzgerald will run unopposed in the May 1 primary, and will face Isaac Moore in the Aug. 2 election.
The issue of Fitzgerald’s replacement will be brought up at Jonesborough Board of Mayor and Aldermen’s next meeting, scheduled for March 12.
“There is no mandated time line for a replacement, but I’m sure it’s in everybody’s best interest for us to have a full board, and we’ll all be looking to complete this process as soon as possible,” Wolfe said.
Wolfe added that community and board members may already have ideas of who should take over Fitzgerald’s spot.
“I expect with the news of this announcement, anyone who is interested will make that interest known to one of our board members,” he said.
“Jonesborough is a special place and part of what makes it special is a history of tolerance and inclusion in our community,” Wolfe said. “We’ve had an African American member of our board continuously since 1968 and I believe that that is definitely a tradition we would like see continued.”