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Council to hear from residents ahead of District 3 appointment

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By Lorry Williams

The public can weigh in on the people who want to fill the District 3 seat on the Fayetteville City Council during a public hearing tonight.

Eleven people have applied to fill the vacancy created when former Councilwoman Tisha Waddell abruptly resigned Nov. 9. In her resignation letter, Waddell alleged unethical conduct by the mayor and other council members.

The council is expected to name a replacement tonight. The council meets at 7 p.m. at the FAST Transit Center conference room.

Council members heard from the applicants during a work session Dec. 6. The applicants also answered questions related to their experience, education and desire to serve on the City Council as part of the application process.

Now the council will hear from residents. The deadline to register for the public hearing is 5 p.m. today. 

The applicants are Antonio Jones, 48, a Realtor; Cynthia Swinson Leeks, 60, a retired human resources officer with the state; Guillermo “Bill” Ayerbe, 54, a teacher and musician; Jesse Brunson, 70, a retired minister; John Zimmerman, 52, an Army veteran and businessman; Kathi Harrington Gibson, 64, a small business owner and retired educator; Kurin Keys, 44, a downtown business owner; Mario Benavente, 31, a third-year law student; Melesia Lane, 52, a legal analyst; Mike Dobs, 55, a retired Army veteran who now works on Fort Bragg; and Raymond Makar, 62, a retired Special Forces soldier who now works on Fort Bragg.

Waddell’s replacement is expected to be sworn in Tuesday and will serve through April 2022.

Residents may register online, by phone at 910-433-1312 or by email at jenniferayre@fayettevillenc.gov.

Lorry Williams is editor at CityView TODAY. She can be reached at lwilliams@cityviewnc.com.


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