Ridgecrest Mayor Veller Ray Carroll resigned his position near the end of a special meeting last week, but later rescinded his decision after state leaders and citizens asked him to stay.
Additionally, citizens attended the Aug. 18 meeting asked two aldermen – Mitzi Bolyer and Darlene Humphries -- to resign. One citizen suggested that a recall petition would be circulated.
“I stayed because people higher up and citizens asked me to stay,” Carroll told the Sentinel. “I’m going to take the bull by the horns and go with it. I’m at city hall five hours a day, so if you have a problem come see me. We are going to move forward, but we have to stop the bickering.”
Initially, Carroll attributed the arguing of citizens and aldermen as the reason for his resignation.
“I have been limited by citizens and the board alike when I try to bring more improvement to the town,” Carroll wrote in his resignation letter. “I’m tired of the citizens and the board bickering and arguing when they should both be trying to find a solution to the problems.
“I had hoped that with fresh ambitions and tireless work effort that I could make a difference. I see now that it’s not possible.”
Citizens chastised Boyler and Humphries who were absent at Ridgecrest’s regular Aug. 18 meeting when the water rate study vote was scheduled.
“There has been a lot of issues of not showing up,” said Tabb Harris in her address to aldermen. “There was a lack of quorum for not showing up and no matter what their excuse was the aldermen seem to decide when they want to show up and when they didn’t.
“Regardless of the state law, this is a place that needs to be run correctly. It takes more than a 30-minute meeting to run a town especially with citizens having black water.
“Citizens have decided that they would like aldermen to resign. If not, there is something else in play that will be taken to Baton Rouge tomorrow (Friday). We think many of you have good intentions, but you don’t know what you are doing. We would like to give you an opportunity to resign.”
Harris was referring to a possible recall against the two aldermen.
Boyler told Harris, “The answer is no. You can go ahead and do your recall.”
Alderwoman Darlene Humphries also refused to resign.
“I’m just tired of all this nick picking back and forth,” said Deborah Varnado in her address to aldermen and Carroll. “I am embarrassed and ashamed for all three of you. This is no way to run a town. You should be ashamed of yourself. Y’all are not showing up for meetings but taking your pay
for not doing your job. That to me is embarrassing, unethical and just wrong. That is the way I see it.”