Commissioners say they aren’t seeking reelection


Jim Holton poses for a portrait on Jan. 25 in a Mountain Town brewery.

Two Mount Pleasant city commissioners will not seek reelection in November.

Jim Holton and Mike Verleger confirmed their retirement from the commission. Both commissioners’ terms end Dec. 31.

Verleger was unavailable for comment.

Holton, who owns Mountain Town Station Brewing Company and Steakhouse, has been a staple of Mount Pleasant government for nearly 18 years.

He spent seven years on the Planning Commission before he was appointed to the City Commission in 2006. Three election victories and two mayoral terms later, Holton said it’s time to focus on other priorities.

“My son is getting up there into his teenage years and I want to spend more time with him because I’ll never get these days back,” he said. “I have to start slowly taking things off my table. City Commission is one of them.”

Holton said he doesn’t want to be a commissioner who can’t be “100 percent committed” to serving the community. He said he’s going to spend more time focused on his business and his family.

“I’ve been doing it for a long time and I’m going to miss it, but it’s time to move on,” Holton said. “It’s time to let new blood and new faces come in and decide what direction the city should take.”

Applications to run for City Commission won’t be accepted until June 26, and the deadline to apply is July 25. Holton said the “political move” is to announce the decision closer to the nomination deadline, but his thinking was “why not.”

“I’m not going to run and I’m not going to change my mind,” Holton said. “People considering the job can reach out to me and I can help them see what the job is like and help them make a decision.”

City Manager Nancy Ridley said both commissioners have done well and Holton has done “yeoman’s work” through his years of public service.

She said the job of a city commissioner is often underappreciated by members of the community.

Holton said those interested in running for his or Verleger’s seat should understand the job is a serious commitment and a civic duty, and that big decisions don’t happen overnight.

“You’re going to have people who don’t agree with your decisions,” he said. “What’s important is doing what’s best for the city, not just for an individual or a certain area.”

He added that even though he won’t be sitting behind the dais at City Commission meetings, he’s still going to be an active member of the community.

“It’s just the commissioner term that’s coming to a close,” Holton said. “If they think they’ve gotten rid of me, they’re wrong.”

To become a city commissioner:

  • Candidates must be registered voters of the City of Mount Pleasant
  • Candidates must submit a birth certificate, naturalization papers or a passport as proof of citizenship.
  • Candidates must submit a petition containing no less than 50 and not more than 80 signatures
  • ALL necessary documents comprising the nominating petition must be filed by 4:00 p.m. July 25 at the office of the City Clerk, 320 W. Broadway St.