Community Workshop, Thursday, August 28, 2014

As part of the Lancaster County Comprehensive Plan update process, Robby Moody, Senior Planner of the Catawba Regional Council of Governments, is holding a community workshop on the Land Use element of the plan.  This will take place at the City of Lancaster Public Works Department, 916 15th Street, Lancaster, SC.  There will be two sessions – 4:00 – 5:30PM and 6:00 – 7:30PM,

The format will include a brief presentation about trends identified to date that will impact the future of Lancaster County.  Attendees will be asked to provide comments and discuss issues, opportunities, challenges and solutions to help create a 10 year vision for land use in Lancaster County.

For more information, contact Robby Moody at 803-327-9041 or www.catawbacog.org.

 

2015 Economic Development Strategic Plan – First Public Workshop!

The Lancaster County Economic Development Corporation(LCEDC)has announced public workshops to review ongoing development of the 2015 Economic Development Strategic Plan.

The first workshop will be held tomorrow, August 13, 2014 at the City of Lights Dining Hall, 3000 World Reach Drive, Indian Land at 6:30PM.

The workshop will include an opportunity for people to assist in developing the Strategic Plan and to provide public input throughout Lancaster County.

For more information, please go to the website link at www.lancasterscworks.com.

 

Final Update – Capital Project Sales Commission

The Commission met this morning to make one final adjustment to the proposal which will be presented at County Council for the third and final reading on Monday, August 11th.  They have amended the wording of the $8m earmarked for the “Main Library”  to the “Library System”.  This would give latitude to the Library Board to decide exactly where they want the money spent.  This could possibly take care of the much needed repairs at Kershaw, renovations and improvements to the main library or any other project within the library system that they deem desirable.

Steve Willis, County Administrator, also announced that SCDOT will be working on approximately 2.5 miles on Woodland Drive due to Federal tax money that has just become available.  Although this road was on the latest list being presented, it doesn’t change the fact that a lot of these roads are on a “wish list” totaling almost  $28m.  The bonded amount to start work on roads recently dropped from $17.3m to $12m.  The balance will be placed on the PAYGO list after the $8m for the library is paid out as well as the funding for the digital radio system($7.5m)and the drug lab($238K). Interest on the bonds will be over $3m.  When you do the math, there seems to be approximately $8.5m that won’t be realized for roads.

Well, that’s it!  County Council decides this coming Monday night whether or not this should be placed of the ballot in November.  Then, it is your decision.

 

Capital Project Tax Update

I was surprised the alternate transportation tax was voted down before the final proposal is presented.  As it turns out, there is not much change from the last proposal except less money for roads which have been divided up more equally. However many of them may not get any attention at all if they are on the bottom of the PAYGO list. The figures for the emergency system and the library remain at 7.5m and 8m. The drug lab remains on the list but nothing for any of the other needs mentioned.

After they were told they should be working with a number of about 37m they ended up with a number closer to 40m after figuring 20m for roads and including the interest for bonding part of the communications and part of the roads.  There was really nothing new accomplished at this meeting as nothing new was added, nothing on the table was deleted and the only thing affected seems to be the roads.  They will take the hit.

I was just notified that there will be another meeting of the Commission tomorrow morning at 9AM.  I plan to attend and will post the results of that meeting.

Public service announcement for York Tech event July 31, 2014

The York Technical College Indian Land Team will host four general information sessions Thursday July 31, 2014 at the Rosemont Clubhouse 1327 Rosemont Drive, Indian Land, SC 29707.  The times are:

10 am – 11 am (sign-in at 9:30 am)

12 pm – 1 pm (sign-in at 11:30 am)

2 pm – 3 pm (sign-in at 1:30 pm)

6:30 pm – 7:30 pm (sign-in at 6:00 pm)

During the sessions they will discuss the steps to enroll, financial aid, and fall course offerings.  Please also consider coming to the ILAC meeting on August 12th to meet the Director and learn more about this exciting new addition to Indian Land.

Update – Capital Project Tax Commission proposal

There will be a final meeting of the Capital Project Tax Commission at 9AM, Thursday, 7/31/14.  After much discussion at the last County Council meeting on Monday, the Council has once again asked the commission to sharpen their pencils and come up with a final proposal that will appeal to more voters than the current plan.  The 1% transportation tax is now off the table, so if this plan is not approved, the penny tax will disappear after the Court House tax expires next year.  A final decision must be made at the next Council meeting on August 11th since there is an August 15th deadline to get this on the ballot as a referendum in November.

Preview for Tuesday, August 12, 2014 ILAC meeting 7PM IL Rec Center

Spotlight on Business will feature Scott Thompson, Agape Health and Wellness Studio.

The studio offers a broad spectrum of health care services including physical, occupational and speech therapy, podiatry and chiropractic services, massage therapy, durable medical equipment, a senior resource center, and a 24-hour fitness center.

Featured Speaker:  Moryah Jackson, Director of Business Development and Enterprise Centers.

York Technical College is opening a new off-campus instructional site in the Indian Land area to provide prospective and current students enhanced access to career focused and technical training programs along with university transfer opportunities. The new Indian Land Center, located 10.5 miles from the main campus in Rock Hill will offer a cohort-based learning environment where students will have the opportunity to take classes to earn credit toward a University Studies Certificate and/or an Associate in Arts Degree.

The College plans to offer additional technical programming in the future at the location. Like York Technical College’s main campus, the Center will offer comprehensive student support including access to admissions and financial aid counselors, career counseling, and other student support services. The full-service facility also includes a modern computer lab, testing center, and library services.

Also updates on local issues.

Update

Thanks to our secretary pro-temps, Jan Tacy, for taking the minutes at the July 8th meeting.  You will find them published under the documentation tab and then under minutes.

At last night’s County Council meeting the recommendation of the Capital Project Sales Tax Commission was tabled.  The County Council has asked the members to go back and rework their proposal with the main thrust to be roads.  All council members stated that they have heard from their constituents that the deplorable condition of the roads is a  major complaint in all parts of Lancaster County.  Since time is of the essence, there was also a first reading passed in “title only” to consider a 1% transportation tax which could only be used for roads.  This would be the fall back in the event the Commission does not come up with something suitable at the next County Council meeting on July 28th.  Otherwise, the opportunity to place the issue on the ballot in November will be lost and the tax will go away.  Hopefully, the Commission has received the message that, although libraries are an important part of any community, there must be priorities and infrastructure is first.  The communication system for public safety was also high on the list for most council members.

You still have time to make your feelings known at the next Council meeting.  Please speak up now or don’t complain if you are not happy with the outcome.

Capital Project Sales Tax committee recommendations

The article that just appeared in the Lancaster News makes me wonder if I was at the same meetings as the committee members.  The article states  in part _

Local road repairs, library upgrades and new emergency radios will be included in a November ballot question to reauthorize the county’s 1 cent capital project sales tax should the proposals pass muster with Lancaster County Council. The commission will present its decision to County Council on Monday, July 7.(sic) actual date is July 14.

 

The unanimous vote Monday by a quorum of four commissioners followed discussion as to which priority projects could both be funded by the estimated $37.5 million in tax revenue and have the most benefit for county residents. Commission chairman Larry Durham said the decision was not easy, but he was satisfied with the result.“I’m very pleased with what we’ve done,” Durham said after the meeting. “Last meeting, we talked about each of the proposals, and asked which are the highest priority. That’s how we came up with the list,” 

During discussion, all but Cureton said they felt roads should be a significant portion of the equation, as did Hoover, who recommended spending $30 million on roads and the remaining revenue on the sheriff’s lab, Chromebooks and select parks and recreation renovations. Cureton said she wanted to see the emergency radio and library projects fully funded and was otherwise amenable to anything else.

Though the sheriff’s drug lab and Chromebooks for at least third through fifth grades were popular choices, the commission ultimately reached consensus on a roughly 45/55 split of $16,675,000 for roads and $20,828,000 to fund the new radio system and library projects. The proposed $12,828,000 library projects includes construction of a new Lancaster County Main Library, a new roof for the Kershaw Satellite Library and expansions at both the Kershaw and Del Webb Library of  Indian Land, among other improvements. The $8 million radio project will replace the county’s severely outdated and poorly operating analog radio system..

 After the meeting, commissioners said they could not have completed the project without the input of the public, which they said helped them determine which projects were most critical. “Listening to the public was the machine that drove this,” Murphy said. “By us talking about their suggestions between ourselves and others after the meetings, we were able to prioritize.” “We had to look at needs. I think they’re absolutely right about listening to the public,” Rushing said. “Just like when I was working, sometimes you’ve got to make hard decisions. It may not be popular with everyone, but you’ve got to make a decision.”

This decision, in my view, does not reflect the wishes of our citizens – although many worthy projects were mentioned, the strongest drum beat was roads, roads, roads.  So, now we have less than 1/2 of the estimated revenue going for roads?  This cannot and should not be tolerated. The article states that all but one member wanted a significant portion to be spent on roads.  What happened to change this?  Please come to the next County Council meeting on July 14th to express your opinion.  I for one will not vote for this project as it now stands.

 

 

Preview for Tuesday, July 8, 2014 ILAC meeting 7PM IL Rec Center

Don’t forget!  This is our first meeting taking place on the Second Tuesday of each month from now on.  Please join us.

Spotlight on Business will feature Marie Chamberlain, co-owner of  The Southern Nest, 6280 Carolina Commons Drive, behind the Red Bowl restaurant.

Featured Speaker:  Melissa Prince, City of Light, Inspiration Ministries

“You’ve all seen the INSP/Inspiration campus on 521 and probably wondered what all goes on there.  Melissa Prince, Director of Corporate Communications, will be answering that question, and more.  Her presentation will provide an overview of the family-friendly television network, INSP (available in almost 80 million U.S. homes) Inspiration Ministries, La Familia Cosmovision, MediaComm, Moments and other activities emanating from their international headquarters in Indian Land.”

Updates on local issues from District 7 Councilman, Brian Carnes.