Morrison resigns from School Board

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By Kellie Parkin

Levy County School Board member Billy Morrison resigned Tuesday morning in the aftermath of being charged with a misdemeanor.

Board member Paige Brookins read aloud a letter from Morrison that stated he had sent his resignation to Gov. Charlie Crist.

Brookins said that Morrison had asked her to read the letter dated Nov. 18 so that it could be added to the official Board minutes.

"It is my hope that this will allow me and my family to move forward with our life and you as a Board to be able to do the business of Levy County with little or no distraction," Morrison wrote.

"It has truly been a pleasure serving the students, parents and staff of Levy County for the past six years," the letter stated.

"I take pride in what we were able to accomplish as a board during my term in office."

Morrison also wrote in his statement that he will attend future Board meetings and plans to be a "regular fixture in the audience" to continue to advocate for those who may otherwise be overlooked.

Earlier this month, Morrison resigned his position as Perkins State Bank Branch Manager in Bronson. Fellow Board member and Perkins State Bank President and CEO Frank Etheridge said he believes Morrison made the right decision.

"It's not that it solves a problem for the Board," Etheridge said. "It solves a problem for the community. This gives the community an opportunity to move forward."

Etheridge said he had no prior notice of Morrison's resignation. "But I think this brings closure," he said.

"Billy did an outstanding job for the Board," he added.

Morrison came to an agreement with the Alachua County Court that the misdemeanor charge would be held in abeyance pending payment of a $50 court fee, performance of 10 hours of community service or payment of a $100 fine, and successful completion of 12 months probation.