The convicted school board member’s decision means a special election will be called to fill her District 1 seat.
Marlow turned in her resignation to State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge, saying she did not want to leave those she represents “in limbo” while her case continues.
“With considerable appreciation to my supporters and the voters of District 1, and the parents and school children for whom all of my efforts were focused, the recent judicial determinations make it unlikely that I can effectively serve at any time in the foreseeable future,” Marlow wrote in the letter obtained by the Cherokee Tribune. “Rather than leave my seat in limbo while the issues surrounding my status are resolved, it is with an extremely heavy heart that I resign my position with the Cherokee County School Board, effective immediately.”
Elections Supervisor Janet Munda said Wednesday there must be at least 60 days of notice before a special election could be held to fill the seat.
“The Board of Education sets the date and the Board of Elections calls the election,” Munda said.
Though no date has been set for qualifying, or the special election itself, two people said Wednesday they were considering runs for the open seat.
BridgeMill resident Kyla Cromer said Wednesday she’d like to fill the vacancy.
“I’m in the process of getting information to possibly run,” Cromer said Wednesday. “I am interested in the seat.”
Cromer lost to Marlow in the 2012 election by 24 votes and said she’s excited to put her hat in the ring for the special election.
“I’m looking forward to it,” Cromer said. “This is something I really want to do. I’m so excited.”
John Marinko, a member of the Cherokee County Airport Authority and active member of the Cherokee County Republican Party, said he’s been contacted about the seat and is considering a run.
“I am giving that some thought,” Marinko said Wednesday. “I haven’t made a decision on it yet.”
Marinko said he was contacted Sunday by the Cherokee County Republican Party chairman about the vacancy.
“I’ve been contacted by several of the political leaders, as well as civic leaders, to see if I’d be interested in the position,” Marinko said. “I’m flattered that so many people have recommended me.”
Marinko said state Rep. Scot Turner (R-Holly Springs), along with other Republican leaders in the county, recommended he consider the position, but said he wanted to give the opportunity more thought before making a decision on whether or not he’ll run.
Christine Rea, a leader of the nearly 2,000-member group Smart Citizens Realize Academics Matter — previously Smart Citizens Rally Against Marlow — said the group is supporting Cromer for the seat.
“We would definitely support her,” Rea said Wednesday.
Cromer said she wasn’t originally a member of SCRAM when the group formed with the goal to oust Marlow, but joined the group once it changed its name and purpose to Smart Citizens Realize Academics Matter.
Munda said 23,820 voters will be eligible to vote in the District 1 special election to replace Marlow.
District 1 is located in the middle portion of Cherokee County, covering an area stretching from the BridgeMill subdivision on the West to Ranchwood Trail and East Cherokee on the east.
Since more than half of Marlow’s four-year term remains, local law requires the school district to hold a special election to fill the vacant seat, said Cherokee School District spokeswoman Barbara Jacoby.
Marlow’s term expires at the end of 2016, Jacoby said.
Jacoby said School Board Attorney Tom Roach is working with the Cherokee County Elections Office and looking into local laws to determine the correct process for the special election.
“We don’t anticipate that all of the details will be worked out in time for the school board to vote at (Thursday’s) meeting to call an election,” Jacoby said. “That vote could possibly be held at the May 15 meeting.”
Marlow was immediately suspended from the school board Saturday after being convicted of two felonies for lying to police about Superintendent of Schools Dr. Frank Petruzielo.
Jacoby cited a few board members who resigned their seats in recent years, either to run for another office or when they moved out of the district they were elected to represent.
In some instances, the school board made appointments to temporarily fill vacancies until an election was held, but Jacoby said the board may continue with six members if an election is scheduled in the near future.
Since board member resignations are uncommon, Jacoby said the school board attorney is still researching local and state law to determine the board’s next steps.
In one instance, a Cherokee School Board member resigned amid an active recall process in 1999.
On Jan. 13, 1999, board member Tim Moxley resigned. The Board of Education held a special called meeting the Sunday after Moxley’s Wednesday letter to formally accept his resignation, and a special election was held March 16, 1999, to fill the vacancy.
Marlow and two of her associates, political adviser Robert Trim and former Secretary of the Cherokee County Republican Party Barbara Knowles, were convicted on multiple felony counts of making false statements Saturday.
The three claimed Petruzielo nearly ran them down with his car after a heated board meeting last year.
Knowles resigned from her role as secretary for the Republican Party, and the Republican Party executive board will discuss Trim’s possible removal from his position as a precinct chairman at an upcoming meeting, said Republican Party Chairman Rick Davies on Tuesday.