by Stephanie Eaton
Monday night proved to be a night of resignations at a meeting of the Weston Board of Aldermen.
Newly elected Alderman Bill Baker resigned from his part-time position as a city employee so he could legally begin his post as alderman.
In a more surprising announcement, Mayor C.R. Carter said he would be stepping down as the city's mayor so that he can accept a new job in Arkansas.
Aldermen unanimously approved the resignation by Baker from his part-time position at the water plant in Weston.
Baker was elected on April 8 to serve as an alderman for Ward 1. However, he was not able to to take office because his part-time job with the city was a conflict of interest with him serving on the board.
After the board accepted Baker's resignation, Weston City Clerk Kim Kirby then swore him into office as an alderman.
The meeting then continued with the aldermen discussing solar panel installations, trash bag limits and utility billing software updates.
However, before the board could move out of new business items and discuss bid reviews and ordinances, Carter, who has served as the city's mayor for three years, made a surprising announcement.
“I have accepted a job with another company in Jonesboro, Arkansas,” Carter said choking up and with tears in his eyes. “Me and my family will be moving. So effective June 26, I will no longer be able to be the mayor of Weston.”
According to city officials, the Weston Board of Aldermen will have to hold a special meeting and appoint a new mayor to serve until the next election. The mayor does not have to be a sitting board member.
The board scheduled a special meeting for Friday, June 13 at 4 p.m. to appoint a new mayor.
After the meeting was over, tears still filled Carters eyes. When The Landmark asked Carter what he would like to say to the board and the community about his time as mayor, Carter could hardly get out the words.
“Thank you for the support,” Carter said.
While Carter struggled for words, those who served with him had plenty of positive things to say about the man who served as the city's mayor.
“I am going to miss you,” Alderman Tim Hill said at the end of the meeting.
Alderman Kent Stelljes concurred with Hill.
“Mayor Carter has been a great asset to the City of Weston. His experience and wisdom will be greatly missed. He has brought a keen business sense balanced with compassion for each citizen and issue brought before him. He has networked well throughout the Northland and brought the name of Weston to some new markets. He has been a great mentor to me personally, as well. He will not be easily replaced and will be greatly missed by many.”
Alderman Joyce Burch, who has served with Carter a little over two years, said she has known Carter most of his life. She said she once attended the same church and that she has had a good relationship with his family. She said while Carter is one of the youngest mayors Weston has had, he has done an outstanding job. She said she admired Carter for maintaining self control when things got heated, but also his ability to take control of any situation that was presented to him.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed working and serving with him,” Burch said.