March 2018 meeting

Council Hears Litter,
Animal Control Concerns

  County Council heard citizens’ concerns on litter and animal control at Monday’s meeting.
  Jacqueline Rhinehart said the county had a litter problem, and needed to do something about it. Increased fines for littering, and volunteer participation in Keep America Beautiful’s Spring Cleaning, Mar.1-May 31st were among the suggestions she offered.
  Jennifer Warner urged Council to start an animal control program. She said stray dogs present a safety problem to humans, pets and livestock.
  She said adults and children should be educated on how to take better care of their pets. Ms. Warren said shed has taken in 42 stray dogs this year.
  She has talked to neighboring counties, and said all are willing to work with Saluda County in helping to solve the problem.
  Lynwood Livingston said his wife was walking their pet dogs on leashes last month, when they were attacked from behind by a neighbor’s dog that was running loose.
  Their 13-year-old pet required two surgeries, and the neighbor has not shown any sign of concern or offered to help with the medical expenses.
  Livingston said there are children and grandchildren in his neighborhood, and he and his wife have warned neighbors about the dogs. He urged the county to enact a leash law.
  Councilwoman Gwen Shealy said as a private citizen, she agreed with all three presentations, but as a County Council member she knew these objectives could not be accomplished overnight, and all require money.
  She said the county at one time had a litter control officer, and needs one now, as well as an animal control officer. She said the county had been in talks with neighboring counties about joint animal shelters.
  Council ratified a lease agreement between the Hollywood Recreational District and the County, allowing the Recreation Department to use the baseball field at Hollywood for practice.
  Council gave first reading to two ordinances concerning flood damage prevention. One repealed a section on the old ordinance, and the other put new wording in.
A resolution to create a commission pursuant to the Capitol Project Sales Tax Act was passed. Mrs. Shealy said more will come out on this later, and may lead to a referendum on the November ballot.
  Council passed a Workman’s Compensation Resolution that will result in volunteers with rescue squads being covered under the county’s Workman’s Compensation plan when the squads are assisting the county.
  A proposal to provide environmental plans for the old Roads and Bridges building was approved. 
 Council approved Risk Manager Hardee Horne’s recommendation to change the substance abuse policy.
  Under the old plan, employees were required to take a drug test following any vehicle accident. The new plan eliminates the requirement for a drug rest when the accident involves collision with wildlife or a domestic animal if there is no evidence of driver impairment or injury. Horne said this will save the county a great deal of money.
  Council approved applying for a $73,000 State Homeland Security grant that will supply communication equipment for the EMS, Sheriff’s Office and EMD.
  Jane Cason was nominated to Westview Behavioral Services board by Councilman D.J. Miller. This was approved unanimously.
  With nothing on the executive session agenda, the meeting adjourned.

Girl Scouts of South Carolina 
Celebrate Four Local Women of Distinction

  Columbia, SC – Girl Scouts of South Carolina - Mountains to Midlands honored four women at its 25nd Annual Women of Distinction Awards Dinner on March 1.  Selected for their exemplary commitments to family, career and community, this year’s honorees are:  Kathleen Lawson Gibson, Director of Clarendon One Community Resource Center; Melanie Huggins, Executive Director of Richland Library; Erin McCaskill, Vice President and private banker for First Citizens Wealth Management; Molly Spearman, South Carolina State Superintendent of Education from Saluda.
  Nearly 200 people attended the fundraising event that was held at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center.  The media sponsor was WIS-TV.
  Pictured (L to R):  Girl Scout Women of Distinction honorees:  Melanie Huggins, Molly Spearman, Kathleen Lawson Gibson, Erin McCaskill.

Law Enforcement Agencies Joining Forces For Safety Patrol

  Law enforcement agencies are joining forces in Saluda County for an enforcement initiative Mar. 21-23.
  Taking part in the event are the South Carolina Highway Patrol, and Saluda County Sheriff’s Office.
  The officers will be primarily patrolling 121, 178, 378, 391, 23, and secondary roads off those main highways.
  There will be several checkpoints.
  The officers  will be looking for DUIs, speeding and distracted driving.
  Saluda County had seven highway fatalities last year, but, thankfully, has had none this year.
  Through Mar 11, the state has had 145 fatalities, compared to 193 during the same period in 2017.
  In Troop 2, which includes Saluda County, there have been nine fatalities so far this year, compared to 19 during the same time last year.
  In 2017, there were 987 fatalities in the state, down from 1020 in 2016. Of the 987 fatalities in 2017, 317 of the victims were not wearing seatbelts.
  Motorists are urged to focus 100 percent of their attention on driving, and to be good defensive drivers.