Williamston Council hears committee updates

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During their Feb. 3 meeting Williamston Town Council heard several committee updates and approved use of the park for a festival in May. Council heard four recommendations from the Parks and Recreation Committee.

P&R Chairman Kempie Shepard reported the committee would like to see the Gist Rifle Memorial in the park moved to a nearby location in the park; recommended the town proceed with expansion of the amphitheater stage, make repairs to the long shed in the park. The committee also recommended Gray Drive residents have a fundraiser(s) to help pay for a requested picnic shed at the community park.

Williamston resident Kenneth Peske requested the town clean up a lot off Davis St. which has trash and debris on it. The lot is owned by the town.

David Meade reported the Spring Water Committee will begin meeting soon and will be requesting funding for entertainment at the next meeting of council.

Main St. Williamston Executive Director Caroline Alex reported she has received the Baseline Assessment Review with recommendations from the state and national advisors. Alex also said that the four Main St. committees have their members, with 6 to 8 people on each. The committees are Organization, Design, Promotion and Economic Restructuring.

According to Alex, the organization will begin work on work plans and projects soon. Alex said she has met with approxiamtely 15 area businesses during the last three weeks and information gathered from the meetings will help with projects and needs of businesses in the town.

Alex said she has also met with representatives of the Career and Technology Center.

Williamston Police Chief Tony Taylor reported two new officers have joined the department. George Creamer brings a forensics background and Jeremy Sargeant has joined the department as a SRO.

Taylor said the WPD will be meeting with Anderson County Sheriff’s Office on Feb. 17 to discuss criminal activity in the area. The area has been active with meth users and has seen a rash of stolen vehicles and stolen items.

Taylor relayed information on a recent incident in which a Williamston officer prevented first responders to an accident on Beaverdam Rd. from possibly being shot or injured. He also reported that an arrest by Williamston officers cleared 36 burglaries in the county.

Taylor said two interns from Tri-County Tec are helping with victim outreach and at the front desk. He also reported the town is moving forward on the Nixle phone text notification project.

Mayor Mack Durham said the community is the 12 man, relating it to talk at the Super Bowl about the 12 man, stating the community is really the 12th man for the police department.

Councilman Rockey Burgess reported the planning commission is working on a draft sign ordinance.

Fire Chief Steve Ellison reported the town and fire department will undergo an ISO audit on Feb. 20.

He said the department is preparing for the audit. The town currently has an ISO rating of 4 which helps with insurance premiums for home and business owners in the town.

Ellison also said the department recently created a Facebook page.

Council approved a request from the Defenders Motorcycle Club to hold a festival event in Mineral Spring Park on May 10.

Mayor Mack Durham said the town is not involved other than normal preparation for an event. The festival will recognize Veterans and first responders.

Representatives of All About Fabrics were recognized for their donation of two ornamental Cherry trees which were placed in front of the Williamston Municipal Center. Mayor Durham said brothers Eric, Greg and Kevin Cohen had turned an empty mill site located in the town into a vibrant business. Greg Cohen said the trees were in memory of his dad, Herb and thanked the town “for embracing us to come here.”