Hartsville mayor decides not to run again

Hartsville Mayor Mel Pennington. FILE PHOTO

By Bobby Bryant,



Mel Pennington, Hartsville’s mayor for the past 11 years, has decided he will not seek a fourth term in November – setting the stage for what could be a crowded fight to succeed him. Pennington announced his decision during Hartsville City Council’s Feb. 9 meeting, which was held online because of COVID risks. Council members participated from home, and the meeting was live-streamed online for the public. “I did want to make an announcement to my peers here on council,” he began. “I hate that we can’t do this in person … but I wanted to first thank you for your support over these last three terms. Given that there are candidates who have called, and (are) interested in seeking election to this office, I wanted to let it be known officially that I am not seeking a fourth term.” “I decided a while back that three terms is an appropriate amount of time for someone to work on a vision for Hartsville,” Pennington said. “I’m certainly proud of the work that you all have helped us do, especially the staff. I wanted to thank you, as my peers, for allowing me to work with you for three terms, and thank those people in Hartsville who gave me the opportunity to serve this city which I love,” he said. Pennington said he will finish out his term, which officially ends at the beginning of January 2022. He first was elected mayor in November 2009. Referring to potential candidates for his seat, Pennington said, “I did think that for the fairness of those people who want to serve the city, I needed to make my intentions known.” At least one candidate, Hartsville businessman Jordan Flowers, had already decided to challenge Pennington for the mayor’s job in the November nonpartisan election. Flowers, owner of Flowers Furniture, recently announced his candidacy, saying, “I am running to bring consistent and clear fiscally conservative leadership to the city of Hartsville.”

Author: Rachel Howell

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