LEE COUNTY COUNCIL

PUBLIC HEARING

JUNE 13, 2017

MAIN COURT ROOM- SECOND FLOOR OF THE COURTHOUSE

Members present were Travis Windham, Chairman; Gordon Eckley, Vice-Chairman; Charles A. Beasley, member; Jackie Josey, member; Johnette Caughman. Staff present were Alan Watkins, Administrator; Julie Stokes, Assistant Administrator/Clerk to Council; Dwayne Huggins, Paul Fata.  Others present were Gee Whetsel, Queenie Boyd, Pat Carter, Red McDuffie, Lyde Graham, School Board Members.

FOIA

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

PUBLIC HEARING

 The public hearing was opened at 5:30 p.m. on a motion made by Vice-Chairman Eckley, seconded by Councilperson Caughman. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor.

  1. LEE COUNTY BUDGET FY 18

Mr. Watkins said that the current projected revenues were $12,431,531 and the current projected expenditures were $12,449,531, resulting in a current deficit of $18,000.

He said the State finally approved their budget but the County was still waiting on the final numbers, which would have a significant impact on the budget.

Mr. Watkins commented there was a decrease of $6750 in operations and expenditures. He also said there was an increase of $2000 in outside agencies, which was in Council on Aging in their Meals on Wheels operation.

Mr. Watkins said that a purchase of excavator and trailer for transporting the excavator may be recommended in the third reading of the budget due to the fact that the monies to purchase this would be coming as a result of an insurance claim and the sale of a previous motor grader.

Page 2, Lee County Council Public Hearing, June 13, 2017

He said that new costs to this year’s budget would include the pension plan increase, which was mandated by the Legislation, at an increase of $55,000, and also noted this could be a potential increase to $300,000 or more over the next six years.

Mr. Watkins also said there was an increase on Workers Compensation of $30,000, due to a couple of major claims in the last year.

He said that C Fund Allocation for rocking of roads increased to $150,000 and a 2% cost of living and 1% Christmas bonus for employees was included at $210,000.

There was also revenue adjustments at $323,000.

Mr. Watkins said the Ways and Means Committee was recommending a 1.5 Mill Tax increase to help address the pension costs from the State Legislature requiring additional funding from employers to address long term gap in the funding required to meet the full pension plan long term liability. The 1.5 Mill Tax Increase will generate an additional $48,000 in revenue.  He said it has been four years since the County has had a tax increase, and they did not increase the maximum amount of 2 mills.

PUBLIC COMMENT

None

Vice-Chairman Eckley made the motion to close the public hearing at 5:50 p.m., followed by a second by Councilman Beasley. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

  1. LEE COUNTY SCHOOL BUDGET FY 18

Councilperson Josey made the motion to open the public hearing at 5:51 p.m., seconded by Councilman Beasley.

Mr. Watkins said the school had asked for a tax increase of 1.28% to 139.83 mills at first reading.

Mr. Bernard McDaniel said that Dr. Andrews was not able to attend the meeting.

Mr. Watkins said the school district is dealing with the same issues as county in regards to retirement and pension costs.

Mr. Watkins said the cap is a formula, and is computed on a population basis, or CPI. He said that no additional millage applied because population is declining, so the current CPI of 1.28 is multiplied by current millage of 138.06 equates to 1.77 total number of mills.  He said the Council has the authority to add maximum of new funding as taxation.

Councilman Beasley asked if the school’s pension fell under the same as County’s and also asked if the school would be having an increase in insurance premiums effective January 2018.

PUBLIC COMMENT

Lyde Graham said that the school district would have 1.6 million in the budget, if they were getting the funding in the books, referring to the Education Finance Act.

Page 3, Lee County Council Minutes, June 13, 2017

The public hearing was closed at 6:00 p.m. on a motion made by Councilman Beasley, seconded by Vice-Chairman Eckley. Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

LEE COUNTY COUNCIL

REGULAR MEETING

JUNE 13, 2017

MAIN COURT ROOM – SECOND FLOOR OF THE COURTHOUSE

 OPEN MEETING, INVOCATION AND PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG

 Chairman Windham called the meeting to order, and Vice-Chairman Eckley gave the invocation and led the Pledge of Allegiance to the flag.

REQUEST FOR MOTION ON ADOPTION OF RECOMMENDED AGENDA

 Chairman Windham said that Artis Graham should be removed from Item 8 in the reappointment of Lee County Planning Commission members.

Councilperson Josey made the motion to approve the agenda with the changes. Councilperson Caughman 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 MAY 9, 2017

Councilman Beasley made the motion to approve the minutes from regular meeting of May 9, 2017 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 FIRST READING APPROVAL OF ORDINANCE

  1. APPROVAL OF PROPOSED ZONING MAP AMENDMENT TO THE LEE COUNTY ZONING ORDINANCE TO REZONE TMP 037-00-00-079 OWNED BY LEE COUNTY LANDFILL, SC, LLC, FROM A RURAL DISTRICT (RU) TOHEAVY INDUSTRIAL (HI)

Mr. Watkins said this was a recommendation from the Planning Commission and the Council would have a public hearing at the next meeting.

Mr. Watkins said this was contiguous property attached to the current landfill operations, and this would be reclassifying that property, which would be used for dirt mining.

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

Page 4, Lee County Council Minutes, June 13, 2017

  1. UPDATE ON LEASE FOR WOODROW PLAYGROUND

Mr. Watkins said that the County had submitted PARD app to delegation, and the lease agreement needed to be extended for PARD grant. He said that October 31 is the deadline for expending $24,000.

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.

  1. UPDATE ON LEASE FOR WOODROW BASKETBALL COURT

Mr. Watkins said this was joint project with the basketball court and the playground.

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

REQUEST FOR MOTION ON ADOPTION OF SECOND READING APPROVAL OF ORDINANCE

  1. LEE COUNTY BUDGET FY 2018

Mr. Watkins said the proposed budget FY 2018 was $12,449, 531, with a deficit of $18,000. He said that it would be balanced by the third reading.

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

  1. LEE COUNTY SCHOOL BUDGET FY 2018

Mr. Watkins said the millage rate for the school district would include the maximum tax increase of 1.77 mills to result in 139.83 mills.

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

APPROVAL OF INDUCEMENT RESOLUTION PROVIDING FOR A FILO OF TAX AGREEMENT BETWEEN LEE COUNTY AND PROJECT TIDE

Mr. Watkins said this was related to Crowne Industries and said that it should have been included in the fee agreement, but the attorney’s office did not forward it to us in error; however, the Council has authorized a FILO. Mr. Watkins said the attorney’s office needed this information in their files.

Vice-Chairman Eckley made the motion to approve the Inducement Resolution providing a FILO of Tax Agreement between Lee County and Project Tide. Councilperson Caughman seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

Page 5, Lee County Council Minutes, June 13, 2017

REAPPOINTMENT OF DON BOWEN AND JAMES I FELIX TO THE LEE COUNTY BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS FOR ANOTHER FOUR YEAR TERM

Councilperson Josey made the motion to approve the reappointment of Don Bowen and James I Felix to the Lee County Board of Zoning Appeals for another four term term. Councilman Beasley seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried.  All voted in favor.

REAPPOINTMENT OF FURMAN FOUNTAIN AND JERRY HARDIN TO THE LEE COUNTY PLANNING COMMISSION FOR ANOTHER FOUR YEAR TERM

Councilman Beasley made the motion to approve the reappointment of Furman Fountain and Jerry Hardin to the Lee County Planning Commission for another four year term. Councilperson Caughman seconded the motion.  Chairman Windham called for the vote, and motion carried. All voted in favor.

APPROVAL OF PURCHASE OF E-911 EQUIPMENT UPGRADE

Mr. Watkins said that Public Safety met on this. He said that the 911 system dispatched fire, police and EMS with computer system and phone and said the life expectancy of the equipment is running out. He said that the purchase of this new equipment would be paid for by the E911 surcharge, and the cost amount of the equipment would be approximately $475,000.

Councilperson Caughman made the motion to approve the purchase of E911 equipment. Vice-Chairman Eckley 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 recognized the school board members and Mr. McDaniel thanked the Council for their support. He said that Dr. Andrews could not be present for the meeting.

  1. PLANNING, TAXES & PERSONNEL

Councilman Beasley said that his committee did not have any meetings. He did say that in approving the budget he thought the Ways and Means Committee did well by the county employees.  He also said that he attended the Walk a Thon at the Mary McLeod Bethune Park and said it was well attended.

  1. BUILDINGS, LAND & PROPERTY

Vice-Chairman Eckley said that his committee had no meetings, but work continued on the windows on the courthouse.

  1. PUBLIC SAFETY

Councilperson Caughman said that her committee did meet on the E911 upgrade and said this was well needed and will serve the county well.

Page 6, Lee County Council Minutes, June 13, 2017

Dwayne Huggins said that it has been 10 years since the County has upgraded the E-911 equipment.

  1. RECREATION AND PUBLIC RELATIONS

Mr. Watkins said that they have completed the baseball season and will be offering summer camps and working with Boys and Girls Club. He also said there was a contractor lined for the parking lot for the old Bishopville High School.

Councilperson Caughman said she sponsored a baseball team and encouraged people to do the same.

  1. WAYS AND MEANS

Councilman Fountain not here.

  1. ADMINISTRATOR’S REPORT

Mr. Watkins said that the floors were being painted at the Animal Shelter and hopefully would be ready to move into within the next 10 days or so.

PUBLIC COMMENT

Pat Carter invited the Council to the Juneteenth celebration in honor of Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune.

Myoecenia Wells said that more signs on the interstate were needed to recruit more business downtown.

ADJOURN

The meeting was adjourned at 6:30 p.m. on a motion made by Vice-Chairman Eckley, seconded by Councilman Beasley.

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CHAIRMAN                                                                            VICE-CHAIRMAN

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CLERK TO COUNCIIL                                                         DATE APPROVED