Hartsville goes virtual to approve plans for city and airport

By Samantha Lyles


Hartsville City Council met via Zoom teleconference on Jan. 12 out of “an abundance of caution,” according to city manager Daniel Moore, due to the spiking numbers of COVID-19 cases in Darlington County. “We thought it best to move all committee meetings and council meetings to Zoom, so we’ll continue that going forward,” said Moore, adding that any citizens who wish have public comments read into the record can send them to city.clerk@hartsvillesc.gov. Moore also said that city officials are staying vigilant for any signs of civil unrest that may well up locally as a result of the January 6 Capitol riot in Washington, D.C. “We’re preparing for anything like that, but we don’t anticipate anything,” said Moore. On the regular agenda, Council unanimously approved Resolution 4405 and adopted the Vision Hartsville 2030 comprehensive plan. According to the attached recommendation authored by the Planning Commission, this nine-part document offers long-range guidance for the development of Hartsville’s population, natural resources, cultural resources, community facilities, transportation, housing, land use, economic development, and priority investment. Before the final vote, Council member Teresa Mack (District 3) asked whether the plan allows for amendments to be made before the mandatory five year update. Moore replied that the Vision Hartsville plan is a “living document,” meaning Council is free to make changes based on the city’s evolving needs and priorities. Council approved Resolution 01-21-01, adopting the 2021-2027 Capital Improvement Plan for the Hartsville Regional Airport. Council member Bob Braddock (District 5), who serves as liaison to the Airport Advisory Committee, said construction on the new terminal building should be complete in April, and further improvements to the runway apron and taxiway are required. Moore explained that since Federal Aviation Administration funds are involved in these projects, the city is required to have an airport capital improvement plan that is kept up to date and approved by City Council. He added that no city dollars are being used in these upgrades. “Most of it is driven by safety. The safety items keep getting moved to the top, and we have to remedy those issues before we can spend on other things like terminal buildings,” said Mayor Mel Pennington. Council also passed Resolution 01-21-02, to adopt and approve the 2020 season pass renewal rate for Neptune Island Waterpark. According to the resolution, “In response to COVID-19, the Park delayed its 2020 season opening and offered to extend 2020 season passes into the 2021 season to account for loss of days in 2020.” The 2020 season passes are set to expire on June 30, 2021 and the park had not yet established a renewal rate for those passes to be extended through the end of the season on Labor Day. This resolution offers a 20% discount to those wishing to upgrade their 2020 season passes during the renewal period of July 1-15, 2021. The rates are offered on a per person basis and are only valid during the designated renewal period. General season pass: $49.99, large employer season pass: $45.99, in-city resident/city employees season pass: $39.99. Hartsville City Council meets on the second Tuesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. Due to COVID-19 safety restrictions, these meetings will take place online (live-streamed on the City of Hartsville YouTube page) until further notice.

Author: Stephan Drew

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