Town allows towing fee increase

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During their regular monthly meeting Monday, Williamston Town Council approved second reading on an employee handbook change, approved two budget revisions allowing funding for Brookdale Park project and matching funds for a CDBG grant and increased allowed wrecker service fees. (See separate story on budget revision)

They also approved a Fair Housing resolution and an Emergency Management resolution.

The wrecker service fee allowed by the town was increased to match the fees currently being allowed by the State Highway Patrol.

For a two point violation, the towing charge will be set at $175; collision, $230 and stranded motorists, $130.

For a four point violation, the towing fee will be $200, collision, $260 and stranded motorists, $155. Towing resulting from arrest will be charged at $350 per hour. Storage maximum will be $28 per day or $50 per day for an arrest.

The town does not receive any money from the towing fees charged by tow service providers that are on the town’s rotation list.

Council unanimously approved a planning commission recommedation made by Mayor Carthel Crout appointing Doug Atkins to serve on the commission. Atkins will replace former commission member Rocky Burgess.

A proposed recommendation by the town’s planning commission was tabled due to lack of information.

A change in the town employee handbook states that under the town health insurance benefit plan package, retired employees may continue their coverage under the group plan at the retired employee’s expense.

Council approved a resolution that states Williamston will work with the Western Piedmont Regional Emergency Management Task Force Natural Hazards Mitigation plan to meet the requirements of the Federal Emergency Managements Agency (FEMA) requirements.

Council also approved a fair housing resolution recognizing April as Fair Housing Month and in support of South Carolina Fair Housing Laws which reject discrimination on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, national origin, disability and/or familial status in the sale, rental or provision of housing services.

Former Mayor Phillip Clardy raised several issues during the public comments portion of the meeting including questioning a number of budget items which he said are over budget, the purchase of town coins for $825, a police fuel shortage and misuse of a town truck.

Ted Mattison requested the town rename Greenville Drive Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Drive to honor the Civil Rights leader. Mattison said that the name Greenville Drive has no significance or historical background and Greenville Drive passes through the heart of what was prior to integration, considered the Black Community of Williamston.

Mattison made the request on the behalf of members of New Prospect Missionary Baptist Church and citizens of the surrounding communities.

The request was accepted as information.

Representing the town’s Historical Committee, Otis Scott indicated a renewal of interest in a town museum. Scott asked about funding which was once designated for the museum and a room at the municipal center which was being considered to house a museum.

Williamston Police Chief Jay Grubbs presented a plaque of appreciation to ?? ???

Massingale. Massingale’s business provided free labor and materials for stripping on town patrol cars.

A new police officer, Kenneth Lollis was introduced during the meeting. Lollis recently completed academy training and is now a full time officer, Chief Grubbs said.