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Andrews continues town park teamwork

  • Wednesday, August 21, 2013

  • Updated Monday, September 23, 2013 11:32 am

ANDREWS S.C.— Community collaboration on the Jones Avenue Park, guidelines for public participation at Andrews town council meetings and police department matters were thrashed out at the Andrews town council monthly meeting.
Utilities billing clerk for the town of Andrews, Patrice Parson outlined the guidelines for public participation at town council meetings, such as it is inappropriate to utilize this period for the purpose of making political speeches and all remarks should be addressed to matters of town business.
Parson also mentioned personal attacks on council members, town staff members or members of the public, are not allowed.
"Anyone making out of order comments or acting in an unruly manner shall be subject to removal from the meeting. In addition, the Mayor may limit discussion on a particular issue, especially if a great many residents have indicated their interest in speaking," she read. "Be brief in your comments, no longer than 3 minutes. Those individuals who wish to be placed on the agenda should call the Town Hall to be included on the meeting agenda."
Andrews resident Booker McCray tackled the issue of the Jones Avenue Park and said he dug up an agreement from 1996 that was agreed on by the county and the Andrews Community Awareness Organization.
"E. Victoria Burnette agreed to lease her property to the county and the county would lease it back to the organization for five dollars a year with the agreement that the organization would put the equipment there and maintain the property, cut the grass, keep all the trash away and everything else," he said.
The city is not responsible for the equipment out there and the county is not responsible for the equipment out there, he said, adding that the agreement was signed by the chair person Benjamin Richardson, chairman, Andrews Community Awareness Organization.
A group of more than twenty concerned residents attended the council meeting to show their support of the park project.
McCray emphasized Jamal Richardson should be the one in charge because he is very interested in the project and "if he wants to be in charge, he should be."
Richardson said he found "an answer by way of that document. I am wondering if there is another document that would supersede that document. If there has not been another plan in place we as a community want to move forward and rebuild that park."
He said a plan won't work without getting the kids involved, "give them a hard hat and let them get their hands dirty."
Mayor Rodney Giles asked Richardson to come up with a specific plan. The Mayor also said Mattie McGee, David Tisdale and Patsy Greene will be working with the community for a plan for the park including forming a committee.
Police Chief Cooper gave attendees a somewhat short and brief idea of what the department is doing.
"For the month of August 2013, there were 11 burglaries and 19 larcenies that include lawnmowers, hand tools, electronics, and more," he said.
"What you might think is insignificant or something you might not care about, but at the same time you would miss it if it were gone," he said. "Someone will take it. If you see someone in your neighborhood, just call us and we'll take care of it."
Cooper said some of the issues within the department include the sense of infrastructure and equipment, and things of that nature. "We've had some things that need to be handled like bringing the building up to modern technology," he said.
"You have to identify the community and work with it," he said. "We are going to implement some type of community awareness, like Crime Watch. And we'll look at a program Georgetown County has, it's called Citizen's Academy."
"The short version of it is you come in for a designated period of time and you get a basic understanding of community awareness and law enforcement," he said, adding the police department is currently putting together information on a Citizen's Academy for Andrews.
People claim they know the law, Cooper said, "either you know it because you are a lawyer, you are a police officer or you've been incarcerated so many times."
Wanda Charping, CPA, Accountant for the Town of Andrews, spoke about a very important tool the council has to exercise which can be very helpful to the town.
"When you have a surplus, I welcome you to say to me we would like to perform a designation," she said. "You do that designation for a specific purpose. For example, this year it was between $100,000 and $200,000 in surplus in the general fund. So if you want to create a parks and recreation fund, you could make a designation to do that."
 Andrews Town Administrator Muretta Dorsey read the Resolution to Adopt the South Carolina Consolidated Procurement Code.
"The Procurement Code provides increased economy in Town procurement activities and to maximize to the fullest extent practicable the purchasing values of funds while ensuring that procurements are the most advantageous to the town and in compliance with the provisions of the Ethics Government Accountability and Campaign Reform Act," Dorsey read.
She also read additional details of the act and stated that the Town of Andrews does adopt the South Carolina consolidated Procurement Code this 15th day of August 2013. The resolution, and the motion were passed to adopt the procurement code, will be signed by the Mayor and Town Council members.
Separately, a motion was made to table discussion of Robert Segal, CPA, PA: Expense Reduction & Revenue Enhancement until Mr. Segal can be present at the town council meeting.
Dorsey said Saturday, August 17 the town will host its annual Back to School event. And Thomas Alford said work is being done to get a memorial park going. "We want to go forward with the plan and make the park a nice thing for the citizens of Andrews," he said.
Mayor Rodney Giles, David Tisdale, Sid Ackerman, Angela Anderson, Thomas Alford, Maggie McGee, were in attendance.

By Barbara Gengler
For The Times

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