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ST. MATTHEWS - Town Administrator J. Milton Pope recommended several Capital Projects Sales Tax projects to St. Matthews Town Council at its July meeting. 

Pope recommended that of the $1.7 million possibly available to the town, it pursue the projects in two phases. Recommended Phase 1 work would include:

  • Lake Inspiration/Hut Park -- Lake maintenance, construction of a walking trail and a playground, $500,000.
  • Town Hall demolition and creation of a pocket park (small open space to provide a safe, inviting environment for the public), $200,000.
  • Bridge Street abandoned school demolition and recreation, $150,000.
  • Dilapidated structure removal (demolition of dilapidated structures on main roadways), $270,000.

Recommended Phase 2 work would include:

  • Continuation of St. Matthews' streetscape project, $400,000.
  • Public safety renovation projects (Fire, Judicial Center and equipment storage), $200,000.

Also during the meeting, Pope reported that Calhoun County, in cooperation with the town, is negotiating with an unnamed grocery store to replace Bi-Lo.

In addition, council heard a request to purchase new police cars. Pope said he and Police Chief Michael Smalls Jr. had looked at used state equipment and had found several used vehicles at a reasonable price.

Council also approved first reading of an amended ordinance related to water meter repair/customer replacement costs.

In other business:

  • Council heard a proposal to adjust the town's Fourth of July holiday to conform to Calhoun County's schedule by closing its offices on July 5 as well as July 4.
  • The administrator reported the South Carolina Department of Transportation filled and paved the hole on Fair Street. He reported that other streets in town are being resurfaced.
  • Pope reported the municipal code is being updated.
  • The administrator said business license enforcement is continue.
  • Pope updated council on the town's participation in the S.C. Retirement System contributions, noting employee costs will increase.
  • The police report report for June indicated there were two motor vehicle accidents, one assault and one 1 larceny. The police department issued 55 traffic tickets in June and provided one assist to EMS and two assists to the Calhoun County Sheriff's Office.
  • The fire department report for June indicated there was one building fire, one vehicle fire, three brush fires and six motor vehicle accidents.
  • Mayor Helen Carson-Peterson and the council members acknowledged the passing of Craddock Morris for his contributions to the community in various capacities, including as owner and editor of the local newspaper, The Calhoun Times.
  • During citizens' comments, Andre Staley said the Calhoun County Youth Organization is active and looking for help with athletic gear.
  • Resident Lynette Heatley said she had concerns about the maintenance and cleanliness of the neighborhood sidewalks.

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Contact the writer: 803-874-3276.

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