Milton Selectboard Vice-Chairman Stu King tendered his resignation from his three-year seat at Monday night’s meeting.
King, a Milton resident for 45 years, is purchasing a home in Fort Pierce, Fla. and no longer meets the residency requirement to serve as an elected official in Milton, he said.
“Milton’s my hometown, so I’ll definitely miss it,” he said. “I’ve been here all my life.”
King and his wife, Sheryl, will keep their Milton home, but their bank required them to declare Florida as their primary residence, he said.
King was elected to a three-year seat last March and said then, he didn’t know he would end up moving.
“It’s not an easy decision, for sure,” he said, adding, “as we spend more time down here, we started looking, and one thing develops into another.”
King has wintered in Florida for many years, and since rejoining the selectboard in 2014, participated in discussions via video or telephone call. Now retired, he left earlier this year as he waited for Chairman Darren Adams to return from his deployment in the Pacific.
Adams lamented King’s departure, saying he appreciated King’s willingness to join meetings even as a snowbird. But as he now knows first hand, it’s easier to serve from home than abroad.
“That’s something that concerned [Stu] every day, [not] being able to check roads or situations or talk with residents in person,” Adams said. “It is difficult to do by phone or email.”
Adams said the board won’t appoint anyone to fill the remaining two years of King’s term and instead will place the position on the Town Meeting ballot.
King enjoyed his time serving on the board, saying his goals when elected have mostly been met. He told the Independent last February he wished to improve the Route 7 corridor, and since then, the town has embarked on two initiatives to better define growth in the core.
Milton 4D – Defining Downtown from the Diner to the Dam – and the interim zoning process both aim to increase the viability of Milton’s Route 7.
Adams said King wanted to move the town forward and “brought that attitude to every meeting.”
King also led the board through the town manager hiring process in Adams’ absence, though he said the decision to hire Donna Barlow Casey was a group one. He’ll miss the camaraderie with his board mates.
“I’m pleased with the whole board’s activities, pleased with their judgment,” he said. “We all have the heart of just looking out for our town, for the community.”
Beyond King’s seat, the selectboard has one three-year and two one-year terms up for election this March. The petition deadline is 5 p.m. on Monday, Jan. 25. Forms can be picked up at the town clerk’s office.