BUCKHANNON — City Recorder Randy Sanders swore in Robbie Skinner as the new Mayor of the City of Buckhannon on Wednesday afternoon.
With his right hand raised, Skinner affirmed, “I, Robert Neil Skinner, III, do solemnly affirm that I will support the Constitution of the United States, the Constitution of the State of West Virginia, the Charter and Ordinances of the City of Buckhannon, West Virginia and faithfully discharge my duties as Mayor of the said city to the best of my ability, so help me God.”
Skinner is a Buckhannon native, 2007 Buckhannon-Upshur High School graduate and 2011 West Virginia Wesleyan College graduate. He currently serves Mountain Lakes Insurance Agency as an agent and executive board member. Previously a president of the Buckhannon-Upshur Chamber of Commerce, Skinner is also a member of St. Joseph’s Hospital Foundation Board of Directors, Artistry on Main and CREATE Buckhannon, among other endeavors.
As he discussed his intentions, Skinner stated, “This community is a family, and we are going to operate it as a family. We’re not always going to agree. I hope that when we don’t agree, that we can have civil discourse, folks will come, physically, to our meetings, physically to our offices, meet with our council members, meet with myself, to discuss the issues… If there’s something you want us to consider, if there’s something you are not happy with, come to our meetings, stop us on the street, have a conversation… We are here to serve,” Skinner said. “I’m not going to engage in a back and forth, back and forth on social media. That’s not the way we’re going to solve our issues as a community.”
The new Mayor then talked about his hope to create and follow a long-range plan of projects, so the city, as well as the citizens, will know when each project will commence. Skinner assured that although the budget needs to be a little more conservative and prioritized, the community will not go backwards. In his speech, he also talked about the extremely divided society and how both sides need to calm the seas, put out the fires and bring all the pieces back together. “I’ve been to all 55 counties… I’ve seen them all, and there’s no place out there like here,” he said. “It has a certain charm and a certain atmosphere that is just not duplicated… we have great people.”
Skinner concluded by expressing his excitement to continue working with the members of Buckhannon’s City Council to move the community forward. “A great government is not the smartest people in a room. A great government is a support system,” Skinner emphasized.