CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Charlotte City Council members selected Plaza Midwood bed-and-breakfast owner Billy Maddalon on Monday to join them for the next four months.
Maddalon, who owns and operates The Morehead Inn and VanLandingham Estate, will serve the remainder of new mayor Patsy Kinsey’s term on the council.
Kinsey, a Democrat, had represented District 1, which encompasses a semi-circle of east Charlotte around uptown from Sedgefield to Sugar Creek Road. She was named mayor earlier this month after Foxx resigned to become the U.S. Secretary of Transportation.
Speaking to the council before his selection, Maddalon said he was ready for a “four-month sprint” before the fall’s election. He is not planning to run for a full term on the council. Kinsey is planning to run for her old seat.
Maddalon described himself as a “centrist Democrat” and said he plans to get up to speed as quickly as possible.
“There’s a lot to be done,” he said. “The ship is on fire, is what I’ve been saying.”
He said he would weigh Kinsey’s advice heavily in making decisions, but would serve as an independent council member. He supports the city’s effort to keep control of the Charlotte Douglas International Airport. The council is currently fighting the state over the airport. The General Assembly has passed legislation to create an independent authority to oversee the airport, but it is caught up in a legal battle.
Maddalon also becomes the council’s second openly gay member. Lawana Mayfield became the first openly gay person to serve on the council when she was elected in 2011.
Maddalon said it was a “non-issue” for the city council members. “It just doesn’t seem to be relevant anymore,” he said.
Nearly a dozen potential candidates applied to be nominated for the position, according to documents posted on the city’s website.
Most of them spoke at Monday’s meeting. Five received nominations. Maddalon was selected in a 7-3 vote on the second ballot.