Sumter County Council formally recognized Sumter County Sheriff Anthony Dennis on his recent election as president of the South Carolina Sheriff’s Association.
Dennis received a gift during Council’s regular meeting Tuesday evening from Chairman James T. McCain Jr. on behalf of all members of Council.
Sumter City-County Planning Director George McGregor spoke to members of Council about a request from Mayester Capers to rezone three parcels of land totaling 2.12 acres from Agricultural Conservation (AC) to General Commercial (GC) for future commercial uses. McGregor said the Planning Commission and Planning Department staff recommended denial. There was discussion among Council members about the Comprehensive Plan and future uses of the property.
First reading passed; Councilman Charles Edens voted nay.
McGregor then spoke about a request to rezone .8 acre at 828 Bethel Church Road from Residential 15 (R-15) to General Commercial (GC). Nothing has changed since second reading, he said.
Third reading passed.
McGregor then spoke about a request rezone five parcels of land in the 3800 and 3900 block of Camden Highway from AC to Limited Commercial (LC). Nothing had changed since second reading, he said.
Third reading passed.
COG UPDATE AND MORE
Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments (COG) Executive Director Chris McKinney gave a brief update about what the COG does for Sumter County. Based on federal and state grants, about $5 million came back into the county in the form of the workforce development program, the COG retraining people for new jobs and respite care for patients with Alzheimer’s disease. He also noted a grant to remove dilapidated and blighted housing from the Shannontown community will get underway soon. A similar program is being sought by the Town of Mayesville, he said, as well as effort to improve the sewer trunk line in that town with help from the City of Sumter.
Council member Vivian Fleming-McGhaney thanked McKinney for his work and McCain noted that McGhaney has just begun a two-year term of Chair of the COG Board of Trustees.
Councilman Chris Sumpter gave an update on the Public Safety Committee meeting earlier. An update on the detention center was given by the sheriff, he said, and he thanked Sheriff Dennis and his staff. McCain gave an update on an earlier Fiscal, Tax and Property Committee meeting. A motion came out of the meeting to give County Administrator Gary Mixon authority to continue negotiating for a piece of property. The motion passed by full Council and Edens recused himself.
McGhaney said the recent S.C. Association of Counties Conference was worthwhile and McCain echoed those comments. He said he and Mixon served on a panel about effective communications as they both gave presentation about how the City of Sumter and Sumter County Government communicate and work together so well, which is uncommon with other cities and counties.
Mixon said the City and County have developed a model for others to follow. Councilman Eugene Baten commended the relationship and said he hopes that rapport will extend to the Sumter School Board. Mixon and McCain agreed and McCain said he’s been in regular contact with Dr. Penelope Martin-Knox, the new superintendent, as well with members of the school’s Board of Trustees.
Mixon also noted that construction of the Lafayette Diamond project will soon result in road closures from 7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 16 to 6 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 16. Closures will resume at 7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 23 until 6 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 26. North Main Street will be closed from North Lafayette Drive at East and West Moore Street to North Pike West and Strange Street. The intersection of North Main Street and Poulas Street will be closed, along with the intersections of South Pike East and South Pike West at North Main Street.