County to join ‘Make it Count’ initiative
By Samantha Lyles
At their Sept. 14 regular meeting, Darlington County Council administrator Charles Stewart confirmed that Darlington County plans to participate in the statewide “Make It Count” day Sept. 26, where citizens will be able to register to vote, get a flu shot, complete their Census 2020 questionnaire and get tested for COVID-19 – all in one location.
Present plans call for the event to take place at Darlington Middle School from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Stewart said the particulars of the event would be posted online through the county’s social media platforms as soon as everything is solidified.
“I think that’s a good opportunity we’ll hopefully be able to provide for our citizens,” Stewart said.
Council also opted not to provide Hospitality Tax funding for the Greater Darlington Chamber of Commerce’s “Fright Fest” Halloween event. Council members David Coker and Lewis Brown noted that H-Tax monies – according to the ordinances governing their expenditure – are intended for building and improvement projects, while tourism-related event funding falls under the purview of the Accommodations Tax Fund.
On the regular agenda, council passed Resolution No. 718 and agreed to administer planning and building code enforcement duties for the Town of Lamar, which has long been without a municipal building inspector. Under this agreement, Lamar will adopt Darlington County’s building codes and statutes, and the county will collect and retain all inspection and licensing fees for work their inspectors perform in Lamar. County staff will also handle codes enforcement within the town.
Council held a title-only first reading for Ordinance 20-05, which would require registration and set-up for mobile and manufactured homes to be performed in a manner consistent with surrounding counties. The two primary changes to current codes will require these homes to “Have steps installed with landings and handrails, in accordance with applicable Building Codes” and have an “SC DHEC Permit to Construct for new septic systems, septic tank affidavit for existing systems or document showing connection to city or county service.”
Also on the agenda, council approved several equipment purchases and building improvements:
A Mower Max with 24-foot boom arm for the Roads and Bridges Department: $176,108
Roof replacement and repairs for the Darlington Library: $57,960
A remount for Ambulance Unit Number 2114 And Unit Number 2119 for EMS: $192,781
Purchase of an Aerial Device (Ladder Truck) for the Darlington County Fire District: $45,000
Council also approved receipt of three grant awards for the Environmental Services Department: a DHEC Solid Waste Grant Award of $18,100, a DHEC Waste Oil Grant Award of $20,204 and a DHEC Waste Tire Grant Award of $3,750.
The emergency ordinances allowing Darlington County Council meetings to be held remotely and live streamed to the public were extended for another two months, with the renewal expiring on Nov. 19. As long as these measures are in place, meetings are restricted to members of County Council, staff, and employees.
Citizen comments can be submitted in advance by emailing Clerk to Council (email@example.com) or called in live via telephone at 843-398-4469. Please call beginning at 5:50 p.m. to be placed on the Citizens’ Comments roster.
Darlington County Council’s next regular meeting is scheduled for Oct. 5 at 6 p.m. in the Courthouse Annex/EMS Building at 1625 Harry Byrd Highway in Darlington.