Several Matters Taken Up At County Council Meeting

By Betsy Finklea
Several matters were taken up at the Dillon County Council meeting on Wednesday, February 27th.
The first order of business was to present a plaque to the 2018 Varsity Football Lower State Champions. Zach Hayes, along with some members of the team, were present to receive the award.
The resolution states the following:
WHEREAS, Dillon High School is one of the schools, which teaches the youth of Dillon County and prepares them for adult life;
WHEREAS, sports activities play an integral part in the teaching and preparing of young people for the challenge of life, and;
WHEREAS, Dillon High School has developed an exceptional sports program for its students, and;
WHEREAS, the Dillon Wildcat 2018 Football Team has won the Class 3A Lower State Football Championship, and;
WHEREAS, the Dillon Wildcat 2018 Football Team played in the Class 3A Football Championship, and;
WHEREAS, the Dillon County Council believes that this accomplishment should be recognized by Dillon County;
NOW THEREFORE, IT IS RESOLVED that Dillon County, through the Dillon County Council does congratulate the 2018 members of the Dillon High School varsity football team for winning the 2018 Class 3A South Carolina Lower State Championship and playing in the Class 3A Football Championship.
BE IT FURTHER RESOVLED that Dillon County, through the Dillon County Council, does further congratulate the entire student body, administrative members, faculty, coaches, other workers, cheerleaders, parents, fans and many other volunteers of Dillon High School, without whom this accomplishment could not have been achieved.
This resolution is passed the 27th day of February, 2019, by the Dillon County Council in a meeting duly assembled.
BE IT SO RESOLVED.
DILLON COUNTY
COUNCIL:
DILLON, SOUTH
CAROLINA
The next item on the agenda was the signing of a proclamation in recognition of Black History Month. Several members of the community joined Chairman Stevie Grice in the signing of the proclamation.
The proclamation states the following:
A RESOLUTION PROCLAIMING THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY AS
BLACK HISTORY MONTH IN DILLON COUNTY
WHEREAS, much of the County of Dillon’s honor, strength and stature can be attributed to the diversity of cultures and traditions that are celebrated by the residents of this great County; and
WHEREAS, African Americans have played significant roles in the history of South Carolina’s economic, cultural, spiritual and political development while working tirelessly to maintain and promote their culture and history; and
WHEREAS, as a result of their determination, hard work, intelligence and perseverance, African Americans have made valuable and lasting contributions to Dillon County and our State, achieving exceptional success in all aspects of society including business, education, politics, science and the arts; and
WHEREAS, in 1976 Black History Month was formally adopted to honor and affirm the importance of Black History throughout our American experience, which goes back thousands of years and includes some of the greatest, most advanced and innovative societies in our history that we can all draw inspiration from; and
WHEREAS, Black History Month is a time for all Americans to remember the stories and teachings of those who helped build our nation, took a stance against prejudice to build lives of dignity and opportunity, advanced the cause of civil rights, and strengthened our families and communities; and
WHEREAS, during Black History Month all Americans are encouraged to reflect on past successes and challenges of African Americans and look to the future to continue to improve society so that we live up to the ideals of freedom, equality and justice.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the County Council of Dillon County, do hereby proclaim the month of February as Black History Month, and that by issuing this proclamation the County Council encourages all residents to joins us in honoring the many contributions made by African Americans to Dillon County and the State of South Carolina.
AND IT IS SO RESOLVED, this 27th day of February, 2019.
DILLON COUNTY COUNCIL
Wayne Green, Sr., of Green Brothers Martial Arts Academy, appeared before council to thank them for their support. He said after the hurricane he thought about not re-opening, but after a call with a student, he decided to continue. He presented plaques of appreciation to the council members and administrator.
The council received bids on the recreation concession stand rental. The bids were discussed, and the matter was tabled.
$15,394.94 to purchase drain tile for the Roads and Bridges Department was approved.
Joyce Usher appeared before council to speak about the Dillon County Animal Shelter. Usher is a volunteer at the Animal Shelter. She said the conditions at the Animal Shelter are heartbreaking and awful. She vividly described the conditions that she found at the shelter including lack of cleanliness, dishes with jagged edges, kennels that were not properly cleaned and dried, etc.
Usher said she met with Chairman Grice, County Administrator Tony Clydburn, and Animal Shelter Director Douglas Pernell. She said they did make improvements, but more needs to be done. She said someone needs to be dedicated to see that kennels are cleaned and dried daily. She said she was not asking for perfection, but she was asking for someone to take notice. She would like to see someone do random unannounced checks weekly.
Usher said she knew the shelter was overcrowded, but she thinks we, as citizens, should see what we can do better. She said they needed someone dedicated to be directly responsible for the care of the animals.
Grice said Pernell was over the animal shelter. He went by the animal shelter unannounced the day prior to the meeting and found the shelter being cleaned and the animals fed.
Usher said she was at the meeting to see that this continues.
Grice asked her if she had seen improvement since their meeting. She said yes and reiterated that she was there to see that the improvement continues.
Clyburn summarized the concerns expressed at the meeting with Usher. He said the kennels are still being washed twice a day as they were before. He said the dogs chew the bowls causing the jagged edges, and those are being removed now.
Clyburn said they have 150 animals on any given day.
Clyburn said they have nothing to hide at the animal shelter, and citizens can visit whenever they want. He said they are doing the best they can, but many of these dogs are strays and are wild and have wild dog behavior.
Grice told Usher if she had a problem to address it with Pernell, and then if there was no action to address it with Clyburn.
Pernell was the next to speak. He said Usher had been a volunteer for the past three months.
Pernell said their daily operations are from Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Pernell said he also is responsible for going to the shelter on weekends.
He has two inmates, and it takes them two hours to clean kennels in the shelter. During this time, they may have calls to go on or other duties to perform. He said that often before they have even finished cleaning animals have already gone to the bathroom again. He said there are many things they can’t help, and they are doing the best they can with what they have.
Pernell showed an example of a record that they keep on each animal that checks in. They have 31 dogs that will be soon heading out of state if they get their health certificate.
He said they care for the animals to the best of their ability, and he is doing the best he can do.
Usher then asked if she could make additional comments. She said what she saw had been there more than a day. She said she was not saying that Pernell was not doing what he was supposed to do, but that we could do better. She said they may need more assets and resources, and she was looking to council for that. She said one employee had not been replaced and those hours had not been designated to anyone. She said she was not pointing fingers.
The county council approves the following recreation requests:
– SmashHouse Softball – $100 from T.F. “Buzzy” Finklea’s account.
– Little Pee Dee Shrine Club Golf Invitational – $100 from Stevie Grice’s account, $50 from T.F. “Buzzy” Finklea’s account.
– Relay For Life – $100 from Harold Moody’s account, $100 from T.F. “Buzzy” Finklea’s account, $50 from Gerome McLeod’s account.
– Jacorie McCall’s Youth For Christ Mission Trip Fund – $100 from Harold Moody’s account, $100 from Stevie Grice’s account, $50 from Gerome McLeod’s account, $50 from T.F. “Buzzy” Finklea’s account.
– Bicyclist Building Bridges – $100 from James Campbell’s account.
Clyburn gave the administrator’s report.
He mentioned the following items:
– He said Lake View EMS in understaffed, and they are trying to hire someone.
– They continue to work on the roads. If you have a road complaint, call Roads and Bridges or the county administrator’s office.
– The County Transportation Committee will be working with the county to put rocks and crush and run on some of the roads. About 20 roads a year may be able to be done that way.
– Progress is being made on the Floyd Dale bridge, and it is scheduled to be finished by the end of the summer.
– Emergency Management and the County Administrator are working on publishing a disaster plan
The council approved the following upon a motion by Finklea and a second by McLeod.
STATE OF SOUTH
CAROLINA
COUNTY OF DILLON
AN ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING PURSUANT TO TITLE 12, CHAPTER 44 OF THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA 1976, AS AMENDED THE EXECUTION AND DELIVERY OF A FEE-IN-LIEU OF AD VALOREM TAXES AGREEMENT, BY AND BETWEEN DILLON COUNTY, SOUTH CAROLINA, AND A COMPANY KNOWN TO THE COUNTY AS PROJECT STONE, AS SPONSOR, AND ONE OR MORE SPONSOR AFFILIATES TO PROVIDE FOR A FEE-IN-LIEU OF AD VALOREM TAXES INCENTIVE AND CERTAIN SPECIAL SOURCE REVENUE CREDITS; AND OTHER RELATED MATTERS.