WRIGHTSVILLE BEACH, NC (WWAY) -- There was a noticeably empty seat at the town hall meeting in Wrightsville Beach Monday night. That chair was supposed to be occupied by recently reinstated Commissioner Brian Berger.
As the residents of Wrightsville Beach asked New Hanover County Commissioners about concerns with bridge work being done by the NCDOT, insurance concerns and the future of Wrightsville Beach Elementary, there was one question lingering on everyone's mind. Where is Berger?
"I'm not sure what kind of communication went forward with Commissioner Berger about tonight's event," Commissioner Jonathan Barfield said. "Last week the word came out that he was reinstated, so how up-to-speed he is on things, I'm not sure. He did make it to our meeting today on time, so for me that's a positive step in the right direction."
But not everyone was as sympathetic as Commissioner Barfield when it comes to Berger's antics.
"I'm really glad he's not here," Neal Briggi said. "I was here the last time we had the commissioners, and I don't think he should be a commissioner. It's unfortunate that the situation has brought him back onto the board. Let's hope he gets his act together, but I don't really think it would happen."
After finding out from WWAY that he was late for the meeting, Berger did get his act together and showed up at Wrightsville Beach Town Hall, but it was 20 minutes after the meeting ended.
"I wasn't invited, and I feel kind of like a wedding crasher showing up without an invitation," Berger said. "I do try and keep the finger on the pulse of what is occurring not only in Wrightsville Beach but in every corner of New Hanover County."
Despite the fact that Berger says he was not invited to the meeting, there is an open invitation for the meeting listed on the New Hanover County website.