you're reading...

Cornelius News

Five commissioners, mayor sworn in, along with a couple farewells

Photo by Jason Benavides

Dec. 5. By Dave Vieser. To borrow a line from a famous Beatles song, it was “Hello, Goodbye” at Monday’s Cornelius Town Board meeting, as three commissioners began their two-year terms and three stepped down.

No change on top

First, where there wasn’t any change at the top of the town’s elected officials. Mayor Woody Washam won his fourth term in a close election vs. Commissioner Denis Bilodeau. NC Sen. Vickie Sawyer did the formal installation, while the mayor, in remarks to the board, urged them to pull together and work for the benefit of the community. “The election is behind us, and we now have to all work together,” he said.

Saying goodbye

For Commissioners Bilodeau and Colin Furcht this was their last night on the board.


“I am excited about what the next two years hold for our very strong new board,” said Bilodeau. “I am confident that a sense of urgency will be applied to the issues that matter most to our citizens. I am also grateful for the recent announcement—an early Christmas present of sorts from NCDOT—about meaningful work about to begin on Catawba Avenue and Hwy. 21.”

He said the orange barrels on Jetton Road Extenstion are a sign that long-awaited road improvements are “finally underway including the addition of new cross walks on West Catawba.”


Bilodeau wished the mayor and board all the best, saying, “I will be cheering you on from the sidelines.”

Furcht’s remarks were a bit more emotional.

“This is a bittersweet night for me, but I leave the board knowing that it’s in good hands,” said Furcht, who lost his re-election bid. “I wish to thank our mayor for his hard work on behalf of the community. I must also commend the excellent town staff for their diligent  attention to detail. It’s been an interesting two years..a little scary at times, but all in all, a great experience.”

Outgoing Commissioner Dave Gilroy, who delivered farewell comments at the Nov. 20 meeting, was out of town.

Saying hello

New commissioners installed Monday were Robert Carney, Scott Higgins and Susan Johnson.
Second-termers Michael Osborne and Todd Sansbury also took the oath of office.

Mayor Pro Tem

As expected, top vote-getter Scott Higgins was elected Mayor Pro Tem by the new board members. This is a largely ceremonial position; tradition calls for the highest vote-getter among five commissioners to be elected mayor pro tem.