UNION — Monday evening’s meeting of the Union County Tourism Commission included information, goodbyes and the election of a new officer.
The meeting began with the committee hearing a presentation about the Union-based Trans-South Wrestling promotion and its benefits to local business.
Then, commission chair Curtiss Hunter announced as of March 31, four members — Monte Lancaster, Yates Giles, Julia Garmon and Michelle Young — had rotated off the commission and their seats would not be filled due to a decision by county council to reduce the membership on a number of local boards and commissions to seven. The seats of four more members — Hunter, Trampas Alderman, Dolton Williams and Peggy Waller — will expire March 31, 2014, and they will not be re-filled.
“The argument we heard was that large groups can’t get anything done,” said commission member Graham Williams, mentioning that county council members said decision making would be easier with less people voting.
“I thought, ‘You haven’t been at any of the meetings.’”
“On this particular commission, that’s what you want — 15 different ideas,” Hunter added.
Since the four former members were present, Hunter gave commission members a chance to express their appreciation to those former members. Hunter mentioned since she has been on the commission, the various interests of the members has been crucial to it.
Waller pointed out that the meetings are still open to the public.
“Just because you can’t vote doesn’t mean you can’t come to the meetings,” Waller said, urging former members to attend.
Garmon said she has enjoyed her time on the commission and enjoyed working with everyone.
“I hope this does not set it back,” Garmon said. “I wish everyone the best, and if Curtiss will still pick me up, I’ll still come every now and then.”
“Well, you’ve got a date,” Hunter replied with a smile.
Julia Krasinski said she was disheartened to see the commission shrinking.
“I’ve learned a lot, but I feel like a newbie still,” she said.
Both Dolton Williams and LaRuchala Murphy said they had enjoyed working with outgoing commission members, even though they, themselves, had only served on the commission for the past six months.
“You all have good ideas, and I hope you come back,” Williams said.
Graham Williams spoke as someone who has served on the commission from its beginning.
“We’ve come a long way,” he said. “You all have a lot of experience we hate to lose. I hope we will continue to receive your input.”
“I don’t intend not to be around,” Young said.
Before the end of the meeting, the commission elected Graham Williams as its new treasurer, as the term of its former treasurer, Garmon, had expired.