LEE COUNTY COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING
JANUARY 8, 2019
FAMILY 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, member; Ron Fountain, member. Staff present were Alan Watkins, Administrator; Julie Stokes, Assistant Administrator/Clerk to Council; Michael Davis, Michael Farver, Justin Logan, Shannon Reddick, Tim DuBose. Others present were Michael Kozlarek, Carrie Gass, Hattie Scott, Ruby Gibbes, Gee Whetsel.
FOIA Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, all individuals requesting notifications were so notified.
Chairman Windham congratulated Council for another four years.
PUBLIC HEARING JANUARY 8, 2019, 9:30 A.M. FAMILY COURT ROOM – SECOND FLOOF THE COURTHOUSE
A. APPROVAL TO PURCHASE TWO TRACTS OF PROPERTY: 1. TRACT 1 – APPROXIMATELY 25 ACRES ADJACENT TO JAMES INDUSTRIAL PARK 2. TRACT 2 – APPROXIMATELY 13 ACRES ADJACENT TO MM LEVY PARK
The public hearing was opened at 9:30 a.m. on a motion made by Vice-Chairman, seconded by Councilman Fountain. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor.
Mr. Watkins said that we would be conducting one public hearing for both tracts of land. He said that the Buildings, Land & Property Committee met on November 28 to discuss the two tracts of land that were available that were adjacent to county property. The two properties include 25 acres that is adjacent to the James Industrial Park, which borders along Lynches River and was used by City Nursery. He said they were no longer using this property for their business.
Page 2, Lee County Council Meeting Minutes, January 8, 2019
Mr. Watkins said that there is possible funding from the state. The price is $6,000 per acre for 25 acres, which is approximately $150,000. He said that we anticipate state funding and the County would use an economic fund to pay for this, i.e. the portion of FILO funds that are set aside for this use. Mr. Watkins said that an engineering study had been done and found nothing of concern for future economic development. Mr. Watkins said that Tract 2 is 13 acres adjacent to MM Levy Park, and the price is $4,000 per acre, for a total of $52,000. He said the source of funding for this property is hospitality funds. He said that the County has looked at a couple of developments possible, but one that stands out is a site for a farmers market. He said the restrooms and parking could be utilized for the farmers market and this would enhance the park.
Matt Hicks – had a couple of concerns: He asked who appraised the land and said the land would be worth $10,000 per acre, with water and sewer, gas and site certified, He also asked if this would expand industrial development in that area. Mr. Watkins said that the County markets that land for individual development and this allows the county to control what goes in that location. Matt Hicks questioned the dollars being spent on land and asked if the county is going to sell/lease the land. Mr. Watkins said that that depending on the economic prospect, the County could do anything from selling or leasing if investment is attractive. Matt Hicks asked if this something that we have done in Lee County in the past. He asked about the fiscal responsibility of this Council buying land. He said that he didn’t vote for the capital penny because he didn’t see the need for an additional tax. He asked who owed the land. Mr. Watkins answered
Tom Drayton. Hicks asked if he or the Council was kin to any of the council members, by blood or marriage. Mr. Watkins said that he was not kin to him, and asked the Council if they were, and they said no. Councilman Beasley did say that Mr. Drayton was the former mayor of Bishopville, and was well known by many people here. Vice-Chairman Eckley said that the County bought land adjoining the industrial park years ago. Councilperson Caughman said if the property beside Garett Park could be used for Farmers Market, it would be good for the County because it’s important for people’s health to be able to get vegetables. Mr. Watkins said that the Farmers Market has been seeking a permanent structure and need a permanent site to apply for grant funding. Councilman Beasley said that it’s a big difference in getting grant funds rather than having to use local taxes. Carrie Gass – asked what the county’s interest in expanding Levy Park. Mr. Watkins said the County does not have any comprehensive plans as of yet.
Page 3, Lee County Council Minutes, January 8, 2019
She asked if the County had done a study on the feasibility of a farmers market. Ruby Gibbs Williams said the farmers market has been in operation for three years. She said that Lee County is a food desert and said that DHEC decided to adopt Lee County to learn about proper nutrition and exercise. Ms. Williams said that it’s a competitive grant. The public hearing closed at 9:56 a.m. on a motion made by Councilman Beasley, seconded by Vice-Chairman Eckley.
LEE COUNTY COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING
JANUARY 8, 2017
ELECTION OF CHAIRMAN AND VICE-CHAIRMAN
Chairman Windham opened up the nominations. Vice-Chairman nominated Travis Windham to remain as Chairman. There were no other nominations. Vice-Chairman Eckley made the motion to nominate Travis Windham as Chairman. Councilman Beasley seconded the motion. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor. Councilman Beasley nominated Gordon Eckley as Vice-Chairman. There were no other nominations. Councilman Beasley nominated Gordon Eckley as Vice-Chairman. Councilman Fountain seconded the motion. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor. Windham and Eckley both thanked the Council for their confidence in them.
OPEN MEETING, INVOCATION AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG Chairman Windham opened the meeting 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 Councilman Addison made the motion to approve the agenda as mailed. Vice-Chairman Eckley seconded the motion. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor.
REQUEST FOR MOTION ON ADOPTION OF MINUTES FROM REGULAR MEETING OF DECEMBER 11, 2018 Councilman Beasley made the motion to approve the minutes from the regular meeting of December 11, 2018 as mailed. Councilperson Caughman seconded the motion. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor.
PAGE 4, LEE COUNTY COUNCIL MINUTES, JANUARY 8, 2018
REQUEST FOR MOTION ON SECOND READING APPROVAL OF ORDINANCE A. APRPOVAL TO PURCHASE TWO TRACTS OF PROPERTY 1. TRACT 1 – APPROXIMATELY 25 ACRES ADJACENT TO JAMES INDUSTRIAL PARK 2. TRACT 2 – APPROXMATELY 13 ACRES ADJACENT TO MM LEVY PARK Councilman Beasley made the motion to approve for second reading. Councilman Fountain seconded the motion. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor.
A. HEALTH, EDUCATION AND WELFARE Councilperson Josey not here
B. PLANNING, TAXES & PERSONNEL Councilman Beasley said that his committee did not have any meetings. He said that he was honored and proud to represent District 6.
C. BUILDINGS, LAND & PROPERTY Vice-Chairman Eckley said that his committee did not have any meetings. He said that he was honored to serve four more years.
D. PUBLIC SAFETY Councilperson Caughman said that she did not have any meetings. Tim DuBose said that EMS has applied for $400,000 in grant funds for EMS equipment. He said that he found out today that EMS was awarded $23,652 in grant funds with no match required. Councilperson Caughman said that she thanked District 7 in their confidence in her.
E. RECREATION AND PUBLIC RELATIONS
Michael Farver said that basketball was underway and they had seven teams. He said they were considering an adult basketball league. He introduced his staff of Justin Logan and Shannon Reddick. Chairman Windham said the addition of penny tax funds will enhance the Recreation Department. Councilman Addison thanked Michael for the good job that he and his staff are doing. Councilman Addison said that transportation is doing well and ridership is good, and they are looking to expand in other areas. Councilman Addison mentioned the retirement banquet for Mary Mack and said he was not able to attend, but Alan attended and said it was very nice.
Page 5, Lee County Council Minutes, January 8, 2019
F. WAYS AND MEANS Councilman Fountain said his committee did not have any meetings. He said that they would begin working on the new budget in the next few months.
G. ADMINISTRATOR’S REPORT Alan Watkins said that he had a meeting with CareSouth and discussed the possibility of developing a local clinic for PEBA employees, or state employees of county or state agencies to provide services. He said that he was setting up meeting with Planning, Taxes & Personnel. He said that he had a meeting with Thyssenkrump on Wednesday to set up a time to discuss the elevator repair. He said that the elevator will be out of service for 2-3 weeks. He said that the county has had a number of phone calls on dirt roads, with all of the rain that we have had, and Public Works is doing what we can.
PUBLIC COMMENT None
EXECUTIVE SESSION COUNCIL WILL ENTER EXECUTIVE SESSION ON A LEGAL MATTER
Council entered Executive Session at 10:15 a.m. on a motion made by Vice-Chairman Eckley, seconded by Councilman Addison. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor. Council came out of Executive Session at 10.42 a.m. on a motion made by Vice-Chairman Eckley, seconded by Councilman Addison. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor. No votes were taken. ADJOURN The Council meeting was adjourned at 10:43 a.m. on a motion made by Councilman Addison, seconded by Councilman Beasley. __________________________________________ __________________________________ CHAIRMAN VICE-CHAIRMAN __________________________________________ __________________________________ CLERK TO COUNCIL MINUTES APPROVED