Darlington city complex to get keyless entry system

By Melissa Rollins, Editor, editor@newsandpress.net

In an effort to continue security upgrades on the City Hall complex, the Darlington City Council voted Oct. 3 to approve a bid for a keyless entry system.
The vote was unanimous to approve the bid from Russco Networks LLC for $27,505.

“We spoke to three different companies and the price varied by about $20,000,” said Darlington Police Chief Danny Watson. “The two most recent that we have were actually a difference of about $8,000. The company that had the lowest bid was (Russco) Networks out of Darlington, right here on Drew Drive. They gave us a price of $27,505.”

Watson said that this bid included work that would make day-to-day operations easier at the City Hall complex.

“This will give us 21 doors throughout the entire complex that will be carded,” Watson said. “If you have a keycard or passcard it will let you through certain doors and there will be a record of it. The system will be set up so that at 8 o’clock, the outside doors will open for us and then lock for us at five o’clock so that way we don’t have to worry about somebody coming in and opening doors or locking doors; it will automatically do that for you.”

The keycard system will also make sensitive rooms more secure.

“It will help us secure various parts of the building as far as particular areas that you just don’t want everyone in,” Watson said. “Take our records room for instance. There are only like three or four people in the entire city that should have access to be able to go into our records room, which is where our servers are for the Police Department, servers are for the Water Department; that is the brain, if you will, of our entre computer network so you don’t want anyone going in there and messing with it. I think this is a good bid and this is certainly something that would help us be modernized and secure.”

Several downstairs rooms will have alarmed doors that will send notifications to Watson and other city officials, as well as 911, if the circuit is broken.

Under unfinished business, City Manager Howard Garland gave council and citizens an update on the bridge project on North Main Street that has caused some concern over SCDOT’s plans.

“Staff had a long meeting with (SCDOT) on Tuesday Sept. 26 and I just want to give a few notes for public record,” Garland said. “SCDOT will replace that bridge; they are planning on starting it after Labor Day 2018. They plan to finish the work by January 2020.”

Garland said that the annual Car Hauler Parade was the reason for starting after Labor Day next year. While traffic will be shifted, Garland said, people would still be able to use the street.

SDCOT has proposed that the city split costs for work related to the water system on North Main.

“SCDOT has asked the City of Darlington to pay part of the cost of relocating the water sewer lines for the new bridge,” Garland said. “DOT has said that they would pay $65,000 and they want the city to pay $60,000. We told DOT we didn’t have money in our budget for that request and they responded to us that it would be possible to work out a trade. I’m just putting this out for information tonight.”

The trade proposal would include the city taking over streets currently owned and maintained by SCDOT.

“SCDOT proposes to give us a yet to be determined list of streets in town that DOT currently owns,” Garland said. “In return for the City of Darlington taking ownership of those unspecified streets, they would pay for the complete replacement of the water sewer lines on North Main Street. That cost is around $125,000. That is a decision we’ll have to make in the next few months; they’ll give us a list of streets.”

Several citizens who own property that would be affected by the project have expressed their concerns during past council meetings. Garland said that those were passed along to SCDOT.

“We did bring up the issue of them taking up properties,” Garland said. “We expressed our strong desire that they do not do take those but it was their opinion that they plan to take them and that they will give them fair market value.”

In new business, Mayor Gloria Hines signed a proclamation declaring October 3, 2017 to be “13 Child Warriors Day” in honor of the first Black-American students to attend St. John’s High School.

She also signed a proclamation recognizing the Bicentenary of the birth of Bahá’u’lláh, the founder of the Baha’i Faith.

Author: Duane Childers

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