LEE COUNTY COUNCIL

REGULAR MEETING

FEBRUARY 13, 2018

MAIN COURT ROOM – SECOND FLOOR OF THE COURTHOUSE

Members present were Travis Windham, Chairman; Gordon Eckley, Vice-Chairman; David Addison, member; Charles A. Beasley, member; Johnette Caughman, Jackie Josey, member; Ron Fountain, member. Staff present were Alan Watkins, Administrator; Julie Stokes, Assistant Administrator/Clerk to Council, Thaddeus Dickey, Tim DuBose, Mike Bedenbaugh, Danny Simon, Brandon Holloman, Teresa Brown, Michael Davis.  Others present were Oleysia Pavlenko, Richard Kirkland, Kyle Kelley, Chris McKinney, Carrie Gass, Frank Millican, Thompson Issac.

FOIA

 Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, all individuals requesting notifications were so notified.

OPEN MEETING, INVOCATION AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG

 Chairman Windham called the meeting to order and welcomed everyone. Vice-Chairman Eckley gave the invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.

REQUEST FOR MOTION ON ADOPTION OF RECOMMENDED AGENDA

 The agenda was approved as mailed and was approved on a motion made by Councilperson Josey, seconded by Councilperson Caughman. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

REQUEST FOR MOTION ON ADOPTION OF MINUTES FROM REGULAR MEETING MINUTES OF JANUARY 9, 2018 AND CALLED MEETING OF JANUARY 18, 2018

 Councilman Beasley made the motion to approve the minutes from the regular meeting of January 9, 2018 and called meeting of January 18, 2018. Vice-Chairman Eckley seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

Page 2, Lee County Council Minutes, February 13, 2018

KYLE KELLEY, OF SANTEE LYNCHES REGIONAL COUNCIL OF GOVERNMENTS, WILL BE PRESENT TO BRIEF COUNCIL ON ECONOMIC AND COMMUNITY SUSTAINABILITY

 Chris McKinney, Executive Director of Santee Lynches COG, introduced Kyle Kelly to the Council. He briefed Council on the role of Santee Lynches COG in the counties in regards to the economic and community sustainability. He also made everyone aware of their services they provide to the counties.

REQUEST FOR FIRST READING APPROVAL OF ORDINANCE

 MUTUAL AID AGREEMENT FOR STATEWIDE EMERGENCIES

Mr. Watkins said he was forwarded this agreement by the SCEMD, and this was in relation to responding to emergencies in other counties and providing assistance in large scale events. This agreement outlines each counties responsibilities and if there are items that need to be reimbursed.

Councilman Beasley made the motion to approve for first reading. Councilperson Caughman seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

REQUEST FOR THIRD READING APPROVAL OF ORDINANCE

  1. PROPOSED MAP AMENDMENT TO REZONE TMP 037-00-00-006 OWNED BY ROBERT B HILTON FROM A GENERAL COMMERCIAL (GC) TO RURAL DISTRICT (RU)

Mr. Watkins said the county had public hearing in regards to this solar project. He said there were six sites in Lee County and this was a permitted use in a rural district.

He said this particular piece of property was located along Highway 341 right beside Mac Stuckey Lane, between Mac Stuckey Lane and the prison.

Ms. Olyesia Pavlenko had Mr. Richard Kirkland to provide information which stated that property values on property with solar farms had either maintained or increased in values.

Vice-Chairman Eckley made the motion to approve for third and final reading. Councilperson Josey seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and Councilman Addison opposed the vote, with the other six Councilmen in favor.

Page 3, Lee County Council Minutes, February 13, 2018

  1. ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING PURSUANT TO TITLE 12, CHAPTER 44 OF THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA 1976, AS AMENDED, THE EXECUTION AND DELIVERY OF FEE-IN-LIEU OF AD VALOREM TAXES AGREEMENTS BY AND BETWEEN LEE COUNTY, SOUTH CAROLINA AND CERTAIN COMPANIES AS SPONSOR AND SPONSOR AFFILIATE, RESPECTIVELY, IDENTIFIED COLLECTIVELY FOR THE TIME BEING AS PROJECT LYCHEE, TO PROVIDE FOR FEE-IN-LIEU OF AD VALOREM TAXES INCENTIVES AND CERTAIN SPECIAL SOURCE REVENUE CREDITS; AND TO MODIFY A JOINT INDUSTRIAL AND BUSINESS PARK OF LEE AND SUMTER COUNTIES SO AS TO ENLARGE THE PARK; AND OTHER RELATED MATTERS

Mr. Watkins said this was the fee agreement associated with the solar farm with Southern Current, and this requirement would apply to each of the six properties.

He said this was a $101 million investment with a five year investment. He said the six sites were located as such:  two are located between Bishopville and interstate on Hwy. 341; one is located off of Highway 15 towards Darlington; three are located below Highway 401 towards Lynchburg.

Mr. Watkins said the annualized fee payment was $282,000 for years 1-10, which is great for the budget and $246,000 for years 11-30. He said this would be divided by the school and the county, based on the percentage of counties’ total millage for each.  He said the company must achieve 90% of total investment for five years or there will be a tax liability.

Councilman Beasley made the motion to approve for third and final reading. Councilperson Caughman seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

BID AWARD FOR DOCS DRIVE PROJECT

Mr. Watkins said this was the road that the Pee Dee Math & Science Academy was located on.

He said that the County has worked with the engineers to get easement from SCDOT. He said the County received six bids and the low bid was Furr Grading at $264,000, which includes installing storm drainage and paving.  Mr. Watkins said the funding for this project would come from C Funds.

Councilman Fountain made the motion to approve the bid award for Docs Drive Project. Councilperson Josey seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

APPROVAL FOR A RESOLUTION FOR THE COUNTY TO PARTICIPATE IN THE LEGAL ACTION REGARDING THE OPIOID EPIDEMIC

Mr. Watkins said there has been public awareness of the opioid epidemic in the state. He said that Representative Will Wheeler, along with Senator Vincent Sheheen, will be working with national law firm and plan to file an action in the state court.  He said there would be no cost to the county and it would be a contingency based lawsuit.  He said the county’s only obligation

Page 4, Lee County Council Minutes, February 13, 2018

would be to come up with estimate on how much it has cost the county to deal with this drug problem and the data proving this.

Councilperson Josey made the motion to approve the Resolution for the County to participate in the legal action regarding the Opioid Epidemic. Councilperson Caughman seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor.

COMMITTEE REPORTS

  1. HEALTH, EDUCATION AND WELFARE

Councilperson Josey said she attended the MLK Breakfast and it was a great turnout. She also said she attended the NAACP Banquet with speaker Gary McFadden and said that it was a great event.

  1. PLANNING, TAXES & PERSONNEL

Councilman Beasley said that his committee did not meet

  1. BUILDINGS, LAND & PROPERTY

Vice-Chairman Eckley said that he had received information in regards to the post office and said that the design has been completed and the construction would be complete in about 2-3 months. He said the post office should be operational by June 15.

He also reported that Crowne Laundry would be holding its ribbon cutting on February 28. He said that by March 1, they should have 110 employees. He also reported that their goal is 150 employees within 36 months.

Councilman Addison said in reference to the post office, that the public needs to be involved and in touch with our legislature.

Vice-Chairman Eckley said that work has been started on the Ashwood dam.

  1. PUBLIC SAFETY

Councilperson Caughman said that her committee met on January 18 in reference to concerns brought to the committee by David Frantzis regarding the chaining of animals. She said that it would be a cost to the public and would not be implementing new ordinance at this time.  She said it would put too big of a burden on the county.

Sheriff Simon said that the state is considering a new bill. Mr. Watkins said there are laws in place to care for animals and there are restrictions are in place regarding chaining.

Fire Chief Mike Bedenbaugh said that for the last six months of 2017, they responded to 497 calls and have responded to 117 calls to date.

Chairman Windham asked Chief Bedenbaugh about replacing signs and posts and said the County should maybe install cameras for repeated incidences.

Chief Bedenbaugh said that it averages $50 per sign and Chairman Windham asked Chief Bedenbaugh to make a recommendation to the committee about camera installation.

Page 5, Lee County Council Minutes, February 13, 2018

Tim DuBose said that the 911 center has received over 65,000 calls for 2017. He said that EMS responded to 4,998 calls for 2017.

He reported that Lynchburg would be having a Health Fair on March 3, 2018. He said that EMS was fully staffed at this time.

  1. RECREATION AND PUBLIC RELATIONS

Thaddeus Dickey gave a report and said that registration for T-Ball, baseball and softball was in full swing. He also said that Parks and Recreation would be participating in the Special Olympics again this year.

Councilman Addison said that transportation is doing well and that ridership is good and emphasized that the rides are free.

  1. WAYS AND MEANS

Councilman Fountain said that his committee did not meet. He said that departments are staying within their budgets.

Chairman Windham said that there would be a Needs Assessment Public Hearing held by Santee Lynches on February 22 at 6:00 at the courthouse.

  1. ADMINISTRATOR’S REPORT

Mr. Watkins briefed everyone the 2020 Census and said the County is already in the process of gathering information.

He also said that he would be sending out budget packets to departments and outside agencies within the next month.

Kyle Kelly reiterated that the 2020 Census is very important to the County and said that the census is worth $1500 per person per year for the count of the county.

Sheriff Simon said that his department had received a $5000 grant from Sheriff Leon Lott in regards to young people practicing abstinence.

He said that crime is low at this time, but still have break-ins taking place.

PUBLIC COMMENT

David Frantzis said that he wanted to find out what he should do to get a bill passed. He said that he may do a petition to get signatures to get an ordinance passed but didn’t want to do that.

Chairman Windham said he would get with committee and write a letter giving Mr. Frantzis some direction as to what he needs to do.

Page 6, Lee County Council Minutes, February 13, 2018

ADJOURN

The meeting was adjourned at 11:06 a.m. on a motion made by Vice-Chairman Eckley, seconded by Councilman Beasley.