Chuck Hunter’s eight-year run as Gig Harbor Mayor will come to an end on Dec. 31. His final council meeting was Monday night.
The city hosted an open house in the atrium of the Gig Harbor Civic Center prior to the meeting. Hunter took the microphone following a video full of thanks from luminaries such as PenMet Parks Executive Director Terry Lee and Congressman Derek Kilmer to thank the city council and staff.
“You couldn’t do it without help,” Hunter said of the office as he began to cry.
City Clerk Molly Townlee presented Hunter with a traditional going-away gift, one she’s been trying to get him to use for eight years: A gavel. Hunter also received an award from the Gig Harbor Chamber of Commerce.
The cupcakes were decorated with tiny hammers, saws and screwdrivers to honor Hunter’s interests — he’s a contractor by trade. Toy bulldozers sat on tables, and there was a display of Hunter’s campaign shirts that read “I trust Chuck” — and one amended shirt — at the entrance of the council chamber.
Council member Steve Ekberg noted in his remarks during the program that having a contractor as mayor got things done.
“I trust(ed) Chuck,” the amended shirt read, thanks to a black marker.
After Hunter tearfully thanked his staff, the full audience in the council chambers gave him a standing ovation.
Council member Jill Guernsey was sworn in Monday night to replace Hunter as mayor on Jan. 1. She was elected in an unopposed race last month.