Thursday afternoon the Barbourville City Council selected current council member Darren West as the City's interim mayor. West replaces David Thompson, who was voted out after accusations of misconduct and a conflict-of-interest, based on findings released in January by a state auditor.
“This community wants better for itself, and i want to help it grow to make this a family-friendly, business-friendly community,” says Darren West, Barbourville’s newly selected interim mayor.
West was unanimously selected by the city council Thursday following the removal of its former mayor David Thompson earlier this week.
“Hopefully it makes the city able to move forward, and make progress [with] what we've been working on since we've been elected to these offices,” says Sherman Lawson, city councilman of Barbourville,
That journey forward was halted in recent weeks when the former mayor was accused of misconduct and a conflict-of-interest based on a state audit. Community members came into the meeting Thursday still reflecting those wounds.
“I do believe that as a result of the audit that was performed by the state that the citizens, the taxpayers and the voters deserve an explanation, and answers. We just hope we can move forward in the right direction that we can trust our tax dollars with,” says Tamara Sanborn, a Barbourville Resident.
West says he understands re-establishing that trust is important, and it’s something he will focus on moving forward.
“I hope that by the council electing me tonight, that it's a big step toward that trust. my goal is to be very transparent. to be the most transparent administration that we have ever had,” West said.
West says he has high hopes for the future of Barbourville.