Ragland sworn in and will serve as Mayor Pro Tem

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By Stan Welch
Pelzer Town Council convened Thursday night (Jan. 2) with a bare three vote quorum, a circumstance that will prevail until April; following a special election to elect a new mayor, and fill the council seat vacated by Olene Bear.
The two resignations have put the new council in an unusual situation for the next two months. Any absence by a member will render the council unable to function, due to a lack of a quorum. Two members were sworn in at the meeting, including incumbent Eddie Waits, who won re-election, and former councilman Will Ragland; who was returned to council after missing the last term.
Mayor pro tem and third member of the council Mike Matthews did not face re-election. He did, however, nominate Ragland as mayor pro tem; a nomination that was quickly confirmed by vote. The move effectively makes Ragland the town’s mayor until the special election. That election will occur in late March.
Following the retirement of long time town attorney Jimmy King, the new council hired Richard Thompson as the town’s new attorney. Thompson has previously served for several years as town attorney for Williamston. King promised to be available during the transition to a new attorney.