December 30By Stan Welch
Residents of West Pelzer will be able to go to the polls on the last Tuesday of the year for a special election to fill one vacant seat on town council. The seat was vacated by the resignation of Robert Alexander earlier this year.
While the faces of the four candidates on the ballot in the Dec. 30 special election are fresh, the names still evoke a sense of legacy and continuity. Two candidates have relatives who have either served on Council, or are still on Council currently.
Donnie Jeanes is the nephew of incumbent Council member Jimmy Jeanes. Jeanes is the only candidate of the four who has so far declined to provide any information to The Journal on his goals and positions.
David Odom, whose mother Ann recently served as a member of Council, currently works in the building and codes department with the city of Travelers Rest, while maintaining his residence in West Pelzer. Odom said in his statement, provided to the Journal, that he wants to serve the community he grew up in.
Some of his goals are to continue the improvement and maintenance of the town’s infrastructure; to assure that the town’s various departments are adequately staffed and equipped; cooperate with neighboring towns to attract and insure proper growth in the area; to provide greater service to the senior population, and to produce a community event for the area’s veterans.
Jim Riddle, also a long time West Pelzer resident, applauds what he deems the progress made by Mayor Paxton and the Council in recent years, especially as regards the upgraded water and sewer infrastructure. He vows to continue to support those efforts; and stresses that as a larger economic recovery looms, the town and surrounding area need to take advantage of their special appeal as a place to live and raise a family.
Shyanne Webb, a mother of three, is the only female candidate, and a staunch supporter of the police department. She stresses that the values and benefits of a small town were among the traits that attracted her to West Pelzer, where her husband Vincent Webb was born and raised.
She is active in the town’s Crime Watch program and was a vocal supporter of the police department during recent meetings where the need for a full time department was challenged by some incumbents on the Council.
The eventual winner of the seat will serve only a year before the term expires.