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South Boston starts process of naming new mayor / February 25, 2013
South Boston Town Council will meet today to discuss the process for naming a new South Boston mayor following the death of Carroll Thackston last week.

The town code calls for Council to name a new mayor within 45 days of the creation of the vacancy. Council is tasked with appointing a qualified voter or member of council to temporarily fill the spot until a new mayor can be chosen by a special election in November.

The winner of that election would then serve out the remainder of Thackston’s third term in office, which would expire in May 2016.

Thackston, a former Virginia National Guard Adjutant General, died last week after an extended illness.

The mayoral succession tops the agenda for Town Council’s regular monthly work session this afternoon beginning at 5:45 p.m. in Council Chambers on Yancey Street. Vice Mayor Ed Owens will preside over the meeting.

Town Treasurer Erle Scott is expected to bring the monthly financial report for the consideration of the Finance Committee, as well additional information on the status of the delinquent real estate tax bills sent out in 2012.

Finance Committee chairman Coleman Speece is expected to schedule meetings to begin work on the Town’s 2013-14 budget.

The Current Issues Committee headed by Councilman Bob Hughes will consider a recommendation to close the remainder of Prospect Avenue and Grove Avenue between Penick and Jefferson Avenue, as work continues on the Washington Coleman Community Center.

Town Manager Ted Daniel will update council on construction at the Washington Coleman Community Center, which the Town is using as a site for senior citizen activities, classrooms for the Mentor-Role Model Program, and a museum for an exhibition celebrating the history of the former Booker T. Washington High School, the M. H. Coleman Grammar School and the Washington-Coleman Elementary School. The Town also hopes to be able to offer additional gym space for the South Boston Recreation Department.

The Current Issues Committee also will receive updates on a planning grant for the Washington-Coleman Cottage District, as well as an update on the Eco Mod Housing Project planned for the Poplar Creek Subdivision.

According to Daniel, the Southside Outreach Group will place begin placing two energy efficient, four bedroom, two bathroom homes at a site on Poplar Creek Street probably beginning in the next ten days.

Daniel said Southside Outreach, under the direction of Earl Howerton, will rent the homes to approved families. The town manager says he expects Howerton’s group will place another three homes at the same site in the near future, although theses will probably not be as large as the initial two homes.

Current Issues members will also consider a recommendation for an appointment to the Town’s Board of Zoning Appeals since the term of Dewey Compton expires on Friday, March 1.

Lastly, Council is expected to enter into closed session to discuss contract negotiations concerning the New Brick Warehouse Project. Plans are under way to rehabilitate the old tobacco warehouse into downtown residential apartments.

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