• Sumter County Council's Oct. 12, 2021, meeting

    Search Our Website:

    Sumter County Council Tuesday evening voted unanimously on a resolution to authorize Sumter County Administrator Gary Mixon to begin work on the 2023 Capital Projects Sales Tax Referendum.

    Mixon said it was a public announcement of the County’s intention move forward with the Capital Penny Sales Tax process.

    It’s a process that will take about eight to nine months, he said, and a Commission will be formed at the first of next year which will ultimately submit a list of proposed projects to County Council. A final vote will likely be held by Council next May whether or not to move forward with the projects on a November referendum.

    At the outset of the meeting, City-County Planning Director Helen Roodman spoke to Council members about a request to rezone a 3.76 acre tract at 301 East Hunter Street from Residential-9 (R-9) to Agricultural Conservation (AC).

    During the Public Hearing, Mike Lynn of Laverne Street objected to the rezoning.

    William Hayes advocated for the rezoning and said he wants to increase property values in the area.

    Second reading was approved unanimously.

    Roodman spoke next about an ordinance amendment request to establish clear definitions for drinking place uses, bottle club uses, night club uses, and special event facility uses, establishing that bottle club uses and night club uses require the same approval process as drinking place uses in applicable zoning districts, establishing that special event facility uses require conditional use approval in applicable zoning districts, establishing use specific conditional use criteria for special event facility uses, establishing minimum off-street parking requirements for special event facility uses and to correct other minor zoning ordinance text inconsistencies.

    Councilwoman Vivian Fleming-McGhaney asked what would happen to existing facilities.

    If those facilities went through the review process and applied as Special Events and were in fact utilizing that exemption to host weddings and birthday parties, for example, those sites would be reviewed to determine if they were operating as such, Roodman said, or if they were operating as a nightclub.

    Roodman also clarified further for Councilman Charles Edens that gala events are usually one-time and unique events.

    During the Public Hearing, Maj. Randall Stewart of the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office spoke in favor of the amendment. Promoters who don’t qualify for an Alcoholic Beverage License could use the Special Exemption as an “end-run” to have an after-hours nightclub, he said.

    Second reading was approved unanimously.

    Clerk to Council Mary Blanding spoke briefly before Council took action on the 2022 employees holiday calendar. She said the same dates that are normally noted as holidays are present on the calendar.

    Vice Chairman Jimmy Byrd noted a minor error regarding what day of the week Dec. 31, 2022 falls on. Blanding noted the calendar would be changed to reflect that. It was approved.

    Blanding then presented the 2022 calendar for Council’s meetings and it was approved.

    County Attorney Johnathan Bryan then spoke about an ordinance to approve the development of an Industrial/Business park to be located in Kershaw County and jointly owned by Kershaw and Sumter counties.

    Second reading was approved unanimously.

    Blanding updated Council on upcoming events: CeCe Winans will perform at the Sumter County Civic Center on Oct. 29th and Oktoberfest will be on Oct. 16th. The next Community Clean Up Day is also Oct. 16th, she said.

    Mixon updated Council on the Home Improvement Projects to be funded by the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). A Request for Qualification (RFQ) will be sent out to determine what agency is best suited locally to head up this initiative.

    Mobile homes that are 20 years or older will be targeted by this program, which should be in place by year’s end, he said.

    Councilman Eugene Baten advocated for Covid-19 vaccinations and the wearing of masks.

    During the Public Hearing Frank Kelly advocated for the clearing and removal of fallen trees and limbs in Wedgefield.

    Dr. Brenda Williams advocated for helping lower income Sumter County residents.

    Maggie Smith advocated for road maintenance in rural areas.