Property deals, codes services and trail project  top agenda for Williamston Town Council

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Williamston Town Council recently approved the sale of property on Pelzer Avenue, established a nuisance abatement fund, approved a contract for permitting and codes and funding for a trails project.

During their Feb. 1 meeting, Council heard first reading on an ordinance amending the rules of order for council meetings to allow attendance and voting by virtually or by phone. Mayor Rockey Burgess said the suspension of the town’s ordinance is allowed under the Governor’s authority in regards to meetings during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The move also allowed Councilman Tony Hagood, who was at home under quarantine, to call in during the meeting and vote by voice over the phone.
Council approved first reading on an ordinance authorizing the sale of .17 acres of property on Pelzer Avenue that the town may or may not have an interest in. Mayor Burgess said the ordinance allows him to release the property to a developer for $1 if it is determined the town does have an interest in it.

During discussions in a work session last week, Burgess said a company identified as X Inc., is exploring an economic development opportunity in the town. The property includes three small pieces of property that would be involved if that opportunity is pursued. According to Town Attorney Lee Cole, an independent title search produced uncertainty over the town’s interest.
The properties are located at the entrance to Town Square Center, at Pelzer Avenue where it meets Town Square Center and a strip of property located behind Town Square Center adjacent to a School District One ballfield.

Council approved an ordinance establishing a building permit, code enforcement and nuisance abatement fund.
Burgess said that a third party inspection service will bring permitting and codes services in-house.
Council also approved a contract with CC&I LLC Services of Roebuck, SC, for the permitting and code services. The company can provide building, mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire inspections for permitted residential and commercial projects.
The town will receive 20 percent of all funds collected which will go into the new fund. Burgess said it would “provide better customer service for developers” in that they will not have to come to the town, then go to the county for the permitting and codes.

Council approved a resolution recognizing February as Black History Month.
Council approved a resolution supporting and committing funding for Phase Three of the Town’s recreation trails project. The resolution allows the town to apply for a SC Parks, Recreation and Tourism (SCPRT) Recreational Trails Project (RTP) Grant and commits to matching funds.
Burgess said the project extends the current Mineral Spring Trial from the old water treatment plant with either pavement or concrete, hopefully to Minor Street, then to the schools and eventually on to West Pelzer.

Council approved the nomination of Dave Wehunt to fill a vacant position on the Planning Commission.
Mayor Burgess said the commission “will be very busy over the next couple of months.”

Council then went into executive session to discuss a contract regarding the purchase of real estate. No additional information was provided. The executive session lasted about 30 minutes. Upon returning to open session, the mayor announced no action was taken during the executive session (according to state law) and the council returned to open session and adjourned.