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LIBRARY: Gavel

ST. MATTHEWS – Town council heard that the town’s new garbage collection contract with Waste Management is going smoothly.

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Town Administrator Milton Pope said that the implementation of the service has gone well, with a few glitches that will be corrected. He reminded residents who unable to move their carts to the streets due to health or age that they can be assisted if a letter from their doctor is given to the town.

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Pope said that letters have been sent to commercial businesses letting them know they need to make arrangements with other services for large dumpsters and that businesses can contact the town to get up-to-date information. Residents are reminded that if the garbage bags are placed in the cart upright, the bags will not leak into the carts to cause odors.

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In other business:

• Council held public hearings for changing the electric and gas combination franchise to Dominion Energy and the Tri-County Electric Cooperative franchise agreement for the approval of each company's responsibilities and limits. There was no public input, and both were unanimously approved by council.

• The police lease for their space in the John Ford building will be renewed with Calhoun County with no increase in the lease fee. The county will also replace the carpet and fix the walls. Council unanimously approved the lease renewal.

• The town adopted a Freedom of Information policy, which is the same as Calhoun County's.

• Pope provided information on the sewer repair project on Pine Hill Street. Since it is a primary conduit for the waste station and requires two pumps for the lift station, Pope recommended repairing one of the existing pumps and replacing the other with a new one, considering there is only a 30-day warranty on the one repaired. Council approved the recommendation.

• Pope said the first Town Appearance Project task has been completed with the structure demolition on Bridge Street. He also stated that Don Rickenbaker's tap request is completed.

Also, the bids on replacement of the roof on the Baxter Street Well House is completed at a cost of $5,800.

• Pope said he was “pleased” that the town's website is completed and up and operating. Water bills can now be paid online using credit or debit cards for a small administrative fee. Also, information pertaining to the town will soon be available.

• The capital projects lawsuit hearing is completed, and the judge should have a decision later in the week. The lawsuit against Calhoun County Council by two county residents pertains to the use of penny sales tax money for uses for other than structures.

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• The town's 2016-2017 fiscal year audit is underway.

• “Chat with the Chief” will be held at 6 p.m. June 11, at which the police chief will meet with the public for questions and answers at Old Town Hall on Bridge Street.

In the police report, there were 72 calls for the month: 70 traffic tickets, two motor vehicle accidents, two burglaries with one arrest, two larcenies, two shoplifting incidents with one arrest, one assist to EMS; two assists to the Calhoun County Sheriff's Office and one fire call.

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• In the fire report, there were three building fires, one vehicle fire, one brush fire and five motor vehicle accidents.

• Council voted to enter closed executive session to discuss a personnel matter and an insurance claim /South Carolina Law Enforcement Division investigation.

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Contact the writer: 803-874-3276.

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