A recent incident where beer was consumed at a Decherd Recreation Committee meeting has led Vice Mayor Richard Gulley to ask for Mayor Michael Gillespie’s resignation.
Gulley said the issue will be discussed by the Board of Mayor and Aldermen at its 7 p.m. Monday meeting at City Hall.
Gulley said the incident occurred on March 30 when the committee was at the Norris Cope Jr. Annex Building.
He said the mayor was at the meeting and had allowed beer to be consumed there.
Gillespie confirmed beer was at the meeting. However, he said it wasn’t a regular meeting and was a light-hearted gathering that had been set to prepare eggs and prizes for the city’s annual Easter egg hunt on Saturday.
Gillespie said he had put the empty bottles in the trash rather than take them with him.
He said he didn’t know at the time he was violating city policy because the gathering was informal.
However, Gillespie said he was informed by City Administrator Rex Clark that beer was not allowed at such events. He added that he apologized and that should be the end of the situation.
However, Gulley said later he will be asking Gillespie to resign at Monday’s meeting, although he doubts Gillespie will go through with it.
“If we let this slide, we can’t do anything to anyone else who does something like this,” Gulley said, adding that city policy is being reviewed to see what action could be taken against Gillespie.
“If it isn’t spelled out, it will be spelled out,” Gulley said, referring to ensuring it is clear that beer will not be allowed at city-related functions.
Gulley said Gillespie should have known not to allow beer at the gathering.
“Anybody with half a brain should know better,” he said.
Gulley said the mayor serves as a leader to the other city employees and should have set a better example.
“He’s in a position of responsibility and is in charge,” Gulley said, referring to Gillespie. “He should have put a stop to it.”
Alderwoman Pam Arnold echoed Gulley’s assessment by saying she will also be asking for Gillespie’s resignation and also wants the Recreation Committee to be dissolved and reformed under a new mayor’s leadership.
Gillespie said taking the issue to the board is going too far.
“Mr. Gulley is an idiot and so is (Alderwoman) Pam Arnold and (Alderman) Jim Sanders,” Gillespie said. “If they want to make an issue about this, let them.
“As I said, I didn’t know there was a rule. I took responsibility, acknowledged it.”