Greenville mayor resigning to take state transportation job

Greenville Mayor Allen Thomas (NewsChannel 12 file photo)

GREENVILLE, Pitt County - Greenville Mayor Allen Thomas announced Tuesday he is resigning his seat after being named the Executive Director of the North Carolina Department of Transportation's Global TransPark.

Thomas is in the middle of his third term as mayor and is a native of eastern North Carolina. He is also the co-founder of Charlotte-based IQMax Inc.

His resignation is effective as of June 29.

The Greenville City Attorney's Office said the Council must vote to accept Thomas' resignation and then would have Mayor Pro Tem Kandice Smith run meetings. Additionally, the council can grant her the full mayoral powers on an interim basis.

The City Council is tasked with filling the vacancy, but there is no set time frame in which to do so. If the council makes a recommendation on an appointment before Thomas resigns on the 29th, he could potentially cast a vote for his successor in the event that the rest of the council deadlocks on the vote.

The council is permitted to choose from a member of the existing City Council or from the public at-large, so long as that person is a registered voter living within the Greenville city limits. If a council member is selected, a similar appointment process to fill that seat would then commence.

"It has been the greatest honor to serve the citizens of Greenville as mayor," Thomas said in a press release. "I have poured my heart and soul into being a positive and engaged visible presence in our community. We have come a long way together since 2011, from the challenges of floods and great recessions to building economic growth, new highways and a vibrant center city with great momentum.

"It is a bittersweet day for me, but I am confident of our progress and I know Greenville is on a great trajectory. It is now time to redirect that energy to a role for eastern North Carolina. While this means a transition in public service, I am excited about the possibilities to work with leaders across the east to maximize our assets and build a solid economic foundation for generations of North Carolinians into the future."