St. Matthews Town Administrator Milton Pope told town council at the April meeting that the town is exploring the replacement of its street signs.
Pope said that Prison Industries, which is used by Calhoun County, is the most cost effective. He said the first streets on which the signs to be replaced will be Bridge Street and Harry C. Raysor Drive, since they are the first that are seen by people coming into town.
Pope also said that the town is trying to get bids for a roof replacement for a building near the water tank.
In other business:
• St. Matthews Police Department reported the following for March: two motor vehicle accidents, two assaults, one burglary, two driving under suspension arrests, one shoplifting arrest, 34 traffic tickets; one EMS assist and two assists to the Calhoun County Sheriff's Office.
• St. Matthews Fire Department reported the following: eight total calls, one building fire; one brush fire, three EMS assists and two motor vehicle accidents.
• Calhoun County Library Director Kristen Simensen informed talked about the Purple Martin Festival held April 6. She thanked Councilwoman Linda Archie-Simmons for her assistance with the preparations for the festival and thanked the town for its assistance and support.
Simensen emphasized that the Calhoun County Library participated in staging the event but was not the sponsor of the festival. She said that 59 vendors participated.
• During public comments, town resident Stack Riley said that he had asked questions at last month's meeting and received no answers.
“It feels like I was ignored,” Riley said.
He asked if the current town administrator, Milton Pope, is a permanent or temporary hire. He also asked about the town employees who are being affected by the town contracting with Waste Management for garbage collection. He wanted to know if they are being retained in another position with the town or if they will be terminated and required to reapply for a position.
• Mayor Helen Peterson said that Dominion Energy has a program that provides help with energy costs to low-income customers. She also mentioned the White Cross program, which ensures electrical service to clients who use medical equipment.
• Under old business, Pope addressed the Nuisance and Abatement Ordinance, which deals with neglected and dilapidated properties in the city limits. Pope said there will be a “ramp-up time” of this pilot program before it becomes effective, and the town is trying to partner with others to make it more effective. He also said that prior to implementing the garbage contract, letters have been sent to all customers and a public hearing will be held within the next two weeks.
• Pope reported that the Planning Commission update will be available next month.
He said that fund from the county’s penny sales tax will be available for capital projects in July. The town is expected to receive $1.8 million.
Pope said that Windstream Communications has filed for bankruptcy, but by law, the town will be required maintain services.
He also reported that town has been talking to CSX Railroad about the vegetation in the railroad cut and was informed that CSX is just a user of the tracks, which actually belong to Norfolk Southern Railroad. The town will have to contact the company, he said.
• Council went into closed, executive Session to consider a personnel matter concerning the sanitation contract, a S.C. Law Enforcement Division investigation and the state surplus contract.
No action was taken after returning to open session.