DEVELOPING: Ward 5 Councilmember Clay Williams steps down

June 5, 2015

BY ROSANNA LANDIS-WEAVER — A surprise announcement at the June 1 Hyattsville City Council meeting means that election season isn’t over for Hyattsville after all. Clay Williams, a Ward 5 councilmember who was elected to serve a four-year term in May 2013, announced that he will be resigning and moving with his family to North Carolina.

Photo courtesy the City of Hyattsville.

Photo courtesy the City of Hyattsville.

The move was a sudden development that arose when some family needs coincided with a job offer.

“Between the obligations and the opportunity it was too much to pass up,” Williams said. He noted that when he was watching fellow Councilmember (Ward 5) Joseph Solomon go through the election process just last month, “… I thought I’ll be doing this again in a couple of years.”

Instead, the council passed a motion directing the Hyattsville Board of Supervisors of Elections to schedule a special election within 75 days of the start of the vacancy.

“I realize the timing of this annoying given that we just had full elections,” Williams said.

The effective resignation date has not been finalized, but will likely be sometime in late June. Given the summer schedule for council meetings, Williams has already  attended his last.

Being a councilmember, Williams said, “has been and will always be a great source of pride.”

“It was just phenomenal being part of a great group of people who were just really helping a special place reach its potential,” he said.

Williams is a North Carolina native, and he and his wife Lonna Hays and sons George and Henry (both born in Hyattsville) will be moving to Charlotte. Williams, a tax attorney, will be joining the firm Johnston, Allison & Hord, where he is looking forward to working with nonprofit tax-exempt entities.

Williams said his last act in Hyattsville will be talking to people who might be interested in running for the now vacated Ward 5 seat.

”I think the interest is there and it is easier for people to step up when there’s not an incumbent that they may be perfectly happy with,” he said.

“I think the best of Hyattsville is yet to come.”