Category Archives: Government & Politics

Sen. Bryant talks with area residents on local, state issues

By Stan Welch

State Senator Kevin Bryant has been holding a series of “Fire House Chat” meetings to get input and response from his constituents. One thing he has learned is that holding such meetings just a few days before Christmas may not be the way to go.

Forty five minutes into his Tuesday evening meeting (Dec. 16) at the Powdersville Fire Department, a dozen adults and three minors had gathered; a fact that Bryant ruefully acknowledged, saying that next year a different schedule might be more useful. Still, he carried on with his presentation about the coming legislative session, and answered questions from the audience.

Donnie Jeanes running for West Pelzer Council

Donnie Jeanes, 33, is one of four candidates running for the open seat on West Pelzer Town Council.

Jeanes has been the manager of a local business, Bill’s Tires, for 19 years. He is a lifelong resident of the Pelzer/West Pelzer area and has resided in West Pelzer for five years. He and his wife Brittany have a fourteen month old daughter. Jeanes has been a member of the West Pelzer Fire Department for 14 years and has served in several officer positions including Lieutenant, captain and assistant cheif.

He said his experience as an officer with the fire department, has made him well aware of how taxpayers dollars should be spent. He said if elected, he will be conservative with taxpayer dollars.

Sen. O’Dell recognized for supporting agriculture

By Stan Welch

Senator Billy O’Dell added to a long list of awards received as a legislator when the South Carolina Farm Bureau honored him earlier this month with one of its two Legislator of the Year awards. O’Dell was recognized for his support of agriculture in South Carolina and his efforts “to help agriculture survive and thrive in South Carolina”.

Odom announces for West Pelzer council seat

David Odom is running for the open seat on the West Pelzer town council. “I have lived in West Pelzer most of my life and I feel like it is time to give back to the community I love so much,” he said.

He is the son of Joe and Ann Odom and a proud graduate of Palmetto High School as well as Greenville Technical College. He has two associates degrees, one in Management and the other in Fire Service Administration. He is a US Army veteran who was honorably discharged after working as a Military Police soldier at Ft. McClellan and Ft. Bragg.

Towns to receive rec grants

West Pelzer, Williamston

By Stan Welch

The Anderson County Legislative Delegation met last Friday in their annual winter meeting, and awarded several recreation grants to various organizations and municipalities.

A proposed park along the East- West Parkway came closer to reality as $12,500 was granted by the delegation. The delegation, which has come under fire in recent months because of the General Assembly’s failure to fully fund the local aid to subdivisions, has argued that the shortfall is addressed in other ways, including the distribution of PARD funds.

Closer to home, both Williamston and West Pelzer received $5000 grants for use in improving their playground facilities. The towns of Belton and Honea Path received similar grants as well.

Local representatives express views for better government

By Stan Welch

Several members of the Anderson County Legislative Delegation spoke before the First Monday Club, a non-partisan, politically oriented civic organization. On hand were Senators Billy O’Dell and Kevin Bryant, as well as state representatives Anne Thayer, Joshua Putnam, and Jonathon Hill, who defeated incumbent Don Bowen in the Republican primary earlier this year.

While each legislator presented specific issues they hope to see addressed in the coming year, infrastructure and ethics reform are clearly at the top of the list for all of them.

Absentee voting opens for West Pelzer election

The Board of Voter Registration and Elections of Anderson County will begin in-house absentee voting on Wednesday, December 3 for the West Pelzer Special Election.

Citizens of West Pelzer Municipality that are registered voters, who qualify, and need to cast an absentee ballot for the December 30 Special Election may do so during the hours of 8:30 until 5:00 p.m. weekdays.

Four sign up for vacant West Pelzer council seat

Special election Dec. 30

By Stan Welch

The slate for West Pelzer’s special election next month has been filled, and filing is closed. Four people have filed to run for the town council seat vacated by Robert Alexander last month. They are Donnie Jeanes, Jim Riddle, Shyanne Webb, and David Odom, whose mother Ann is a former Council member.

Alexander resigned his seat after moving out of town to pursue an employment opportunity. The Town Council has struggled from time to time with having an even number of members.

Senator Bryant to hold local “Firehouse Chats”

Senator Kevin Bryant recently announced that he will host a series of “Firehouse Chats” to update the constituents and taxpayers of Anderson County on a number of issues facing South Carolina.

Senator Bryant will focus primarily on two issues: The South Carolina Retirement System Investment Commission (RSIC) and the Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) however other constituent questions and concerns will also be addressed, a spokesperson from the senator’s office said.

Republicans, incumbents cruise to wins across state

By Stan Welch

In an election year with very little drama at the local and state levels, South Carolina nevertheless led the way in the Republican wave that swept from the east coast to the west, making history along the way.

Governor Nikki Haley’s historic re-election as the state’s first woman governor was announced within minutes of the closing of the polls, followed quickly by the announcement of Senator Tim Scott’s unprecedented election as the first black United States Senator in the historic South since the end of Reconstruction.

Local and state election summary

Voters will go to the polls tomorrow, Tuesday for election day. Here is a brief summary of local and state races: Governor Nikki Haley faces a broad spectrum of challengers, but Vincent Sheheen, her Democratic foe, is generally conceded to be the only significant opposition. That race took an interesting turn as “independent Republican” Tom Ervin withdrew from the race and endorsed the Democrat Sheheen.

Election Day is next Tuesday

Voters will go to the polls next Tuesday for election day with State races being their primary focus, as many local candidates are running unopposed.

Governor Nikki Haley faces a broad spectrum of challengers, but Vincent Sheheen, her Democratic foe, is generally conceded to be the only significant opposition. That race took an interesting turn this week, as “independent Republican” Tom Ervin withdrew from the race and endorsed the Democrat Sheheen.

U.S. Congressman Jeff Duncan faces opposition from Barbara Jo Mulliss for the District Three Congressional seat.

South Greenville County – election

Voters in three area Greenville County Special Purpose Districts will also choose who will represent them.

Piedmont Public Service District has three seats to be filled. Incumbents running unopposed include Al C. McAbee Jr, Ed Poore and Terry Yates .

The Canebrake Fire Special Election has three seats to be filled: Kyle Gilley and Randy McRae.

Dunklin Fire has three seats to be filled: Fay T Childress, Mark E Pittman and Danny Smith.

SC House Rep. District 28 Rep. Eric Beddingfield is running unopposed.

Greenville County Council District 26 will choose between incumbent Republican Lynn W. Ballard and Democrat Windell Rodgers.

Burgess hopes to continue accomplishments by town

Incumbent Ward 2 Councilman Rockey Burgess is a lifelong resident of Williamston and a business owner. His business, Autech, LLC, is located within the Town of Williamston. He has many years of public service in the US Army and the Anderson County Sheriff’s Office.

“I believe that in order to best serve the interests of the town, council members must take an active role in the processes that bring about success. That means rolling up your sleeves and not being afraid of hard work,” Burgess said. “Since being elected, I have done just that. I have worked hard and will continue to work hard to make things happen.”

Joan Ragsdale running for Williamston Ward 2

Joan Ragsdale is running for the Williamston Town Council Ward 2 seat and says she wants to help make Williamston a better place to live as well as a place where others will want to come with families and businesses.

“The experience of running for council has been great for me,” Ragsdale said. “While I was born and raised in this town, many things have changed, including the demographics of our town over the past several decades. It has been my pleasure to make new friends as I’ve knocked on doors and used social and news media to help people get to know me.”

Please visit WilliamstonJournal.com and TheJournalOnline.com