Hiawassee Mayor Barbara Mathis to retire April 20, says city council
By Lily Avery
Hiawassee Mayor Barbara Mathis will serve her last day in office on Thursday, April 20, according to Hiawassee City Hall.
The announcement was made in a Tuesday, April 18, called meeting of the Hiawassee City Council.
Mayor Mathis was not present for the meeting.
The meeting was called to finalize the remaining paperwork regarding Mayor Mathis’ retirement.
The city will host a retirement reception in honor of Mayor Mathis’ more than 20 years in office, to take place from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 20, the same day as her effective retirement.
The city and Mayor Mathis signed a “Release of Claims Agreement,” which was presented at the called meeting Tuesday.
The agreement is aimed at heading off future legal matters between the city and Mayor Mathis as per the terms of her retirement.
Since Mayor Mathis is retiring before the end of her term, which would have been Dec. 31, 2017, Hiawassee Mayor Pro Tem Liz Ordiales will serve as acting mayor until a new mayor is elected this November.
“I’ve been working with Barbara for the last month to ensure that we have a smooth transition and that nothing falls through the cracks here at the city,” said Ordiales. “We are positioning ourselves to be successful and to make sure that our citizens are well maintained with safety and utilities.
“We look forward to continuing to do what we’ve been doing for the betterment of the city.”