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City workers blame resignation on mayor’s marijuana stance

Whitewright, Texas
Whitewright, Texas

Several city workers in the town of Whitewright, TX have resigned and they’re blaming their mayor’s stance on marijuana, however that may not be the whole story.

The town of just over 1,600, which is located near the Oklahoma border just north of Dallas, recently elected a new mayor who has openly called for legalizing medical marijuana. The incumbent mayor was thoroughly trounced, and two other positions on the city council were recently filled with new council members.

Jeremiah Looney, an Army veteran who toured in Iraq, was sworn in as the town’s new mayor earlier this month. He says the citizens lost their voice and were unhappy with how Whitewright was being operated, adding that citizens were being shut out and ignored.

There were also calls for an audit as people such as the police chief held multiple titles and were being compensated in ways local citizens had not intended.

Those resigning included the city secretary, police chief, court clerk, and the water utility and billing clerk. A Justice of the Peace also resigned, though it was not clear that he did so in unison with the others.

Texas Marijuana Policy Advocacy Workshops — January 2018
Texas Marijuana Policy Advocacy Workshops — January 2018

While Looney believes that the people who resigned did have a difference of opinion regarding his stance on medical cannabis, ultimately it was the pressure from the people who were tired of business as usual and getting push-back when they had an issue that likely prompted their resignations.

Since then, applications have come pouring in to fill the open positions, and until the positions can be filled, many people have been volunteering their time to help ensure the city keeps running.

“Today we had a retired man sitting in the water utility department taking payments and helping people, the support from all of the volunteers has been great and the community is pulling together to make this city work” Looney stated.

A news outlet had previously reported that Looney supported medical cannabis for veterans, however he opposes legalizing marijuana for recreational use. Looney says that he strongly supports veterans and getting them access to medicine that can help them, however he never gave a stance concerning recreational marijuana. At this time, he has no comment on the matter.

Looney expects that here in a few weeks everything will move on, positions will be filled, and he will be focusing on bringing a grocery store back to town and breathing life back into the downtown business area.

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Stephen Carter

Stephen Carter is a journalist and information technology specialist living in Waco, Texas. He has been working with the cannabis movement since 2009. He founded Texas Cannabis Report in 2013 to bring Texans accurate cannabis related news.

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