Town provides “seed money” for ticketed entertainment events

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By David Meade
During their meeting Monday, Williamston Town Council approved second reading on a property purchase and rezoned town property as part of an effort to help with economic development. Council also approved funding for “seed money” for ticketed events in the renovated Municiple Center auditorium.
Council approved $20,000 from the town’s Hospitality Tax Fund to be used for “seed money” for ticketed events to be held in the Municipal Center Auditorium. Mayor Mack Durham said the funds were requested by Roger Dickson, an individual who is helping with town events.
Durham said the town has provided some funding for free events in the past and they would like to begin building funding for ticketed events. Durham said the goal is to build an entertainment fund and to use the entertainment space in the auditorium which was renovated last year.
“We would like to break even or better and begin offering higher quality, regular entertainment,” the mayor said.
After the meeting Durham said details of how the fund will be used by the town and Dickson are still being worked out. There is no written contract with Dickson nor the promotion company he works for.
Durham said Dickson is helping the town with providing quality entertainment.
He has been involved with the Party in the Park music events for the last two years. The town continued to organize the free events, with Dickson’s help, after the Palmetto Business Association decided their members could not provide the manpower needed. Dickson also helped coordinate the fall music series held in the park last fall.
Dickson was instrumental in organizing two successful indoor events last year, the comedy show by James Gregory and the Christian Music singer/songwriter Jason Crabb, both held in the renovated auditorium.
Durham said he would like to see more of those types events in Williamston.
In other action, Council approved second reading on the purchase of property TMS number 245-19-06-010 on Mauldin Street for $9000. The purchase will clear the way for a proposed street connecting Cherokee Road with West Main St., creating a four way intersection with Prince Street. The project is recommended in the Town’s Master Plan that was developed several years ago.
Council also approved second reading on rezoning town property on Mahaffey Road from INS – Institutional to I2 Light Industrial. Mayor Durham said the zoning is part of an effort “to bring more jobs to our community.”
Durham announced that a new handicap accessible swing has been placed in Mineral Spring Park. A ribbon cutting for the swing was held earlier Monday.
Durham also stated that several properties with multiple owners were condemned to allow the repair work on Minor Street to proceed. Obtaining the rights of ways has delayed the project for several months.
Debbie Chapman provided the following Codes Update for February-March:
There were two reports of illegal dumping, 1 report of overgrown property that is attracting rats and other vermin, 2 incidents of littering after eviction, 1 incident of a TV and refrigerator being left curbside, 2 dog complaints/PD assist @ same residence, 2 complaints of trash and debris in yards, and 1 mixed pile.