MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
OF THE WALHALLA CITY COUNCIL
JULY 16, 2019
Present: Mayor Danny Edwards, Councilman David Underwood, Councilman Robbie Burrell, Councilman Dennis Owens, Councilman Tjay Bagwell, Councilman Danny Woodward, Councilman Josh Roberts, and City Administrator Brent Taylor.
Guest: Bruce Smith
Mayor Edwards called the meeting to order at 5:30 pm. Councilman Woodward led the pledge of allegiance.
Public Input: Mr. Bruce Smith spoke on naming Chicopee Ballfield after a long time resident and coach Fred McCall. He stated Mr. McCall greatly enriched the lives of many people through the programs he provided at the ballfield. He also stated they conducted an informal poll of approximately 255 people who were in favor the renaming. Mr. McCall is in poor health and time is of the essence.
Mr. Underwood asked, “If council could vote on it now.” The Mayor responded to him stating it would have to go through committee.
Mr. Bagwell stated we should look at other naming opportunities within the park.
Approval of Minutes: On a motion by Mr. Bagwell, seconded by Mr. Woodward and unanimously carried, the minutes from the regular meeting on June 18, 2019, were approved.
Reading of Resolutions and Ordinances:
Mr. Woodward made a motion to adopt Resolution 2019-09, A RESOLUTION COMENDING THE ACTIONS OF OFFICER ELIJAH HAYES IN ASSISTING OCCUPANTS ESCAPE FROM A BURNING HOME ON JULY 6, 2019. The motion was seconded by Mr. Owens and unanimously carried.
Discussion: Police Chief Brinson added a woman in the house was planning to get married the next day. Officer Hayes removed the wedding dress from the burning house so she could be married in it the next day. Chief Brinson added that Officer Hayes is an asset and we are proud to have him.
Fire Chief Burton also added that they are very fortunate that Officer Hayes noticed the smoke while on patrol. The home didn’t have smoke alarms. Chief Burton urges everyone to have working smoke alarms.
Mr. Bagwell made a motion to approve Resolution 2019-10, A RESOLUTION RECOGNIZING THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF NATALIE BRITT, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE PALMETTO CONSERVATION FOUNDATION TO THE CITY OF WALHALLA. The motion was seconded by Mr. Owens and unanimously carried.
Discussion: The Mayor stated Ms. Britt did a wonderful job assisting the City with Stumphouse Park Development.
Mr. Bagwell made a motion to approve second reading and public review, Ordinance 2019-11, AN ORDINANCE TO AMEND ORDIANCE 2019-01 TO ESTABLISH REGULATIONS FOR MOBILE FOOD VEHICLES. The motion was seconded by Mr. Owens and unanimously carried.
Discussion: Mr. Bagwell stated we will form a committee to study the entire ordinance and make some recommendations.
Mr. Taylor reported that a group of downtown business owners are interested in creating an Artisan and Vintage Craft Fair to the City on May 2, 2020. The event will include about 60 vendors, musical performances, and a children’s area. The group will probably request about $7,000 from the City.
Council indicated an interest in supporting the fair and would like a more detailed proposal.
TAP FEE FOR HWY. 11 Industrial Park
Mr. Underwood mad a motion to waive the TAP fee to Oconee County for installation of a water tap for an irrigation system at Hwy. 11 Industrial Park. The motion was seconded by Mr. Bagwell and unanimously carried.
Approval for funds for the Walhalla Performing Arts Center
Mr. Underwood made a motion to allocate $30,000.00 to the Walhalla Performing Arts Center to purchase new lights and repair the windows. The motion was seconded by Mr. Bagwell and unanimously carried.
The Mayor said, “They do wonderful things for the City.” Mr. Underwood said, “They do a great job.” Mr. Owens said, “They do great things for businesses here in town.”
Mr. Owens reported the department ran 125 calls for the month of June. The previous record for a month was 120 calls. Seventy-six (76) were fire calls and forty-nine (49) were medical calls. Fifty-seven were inside the city and sixty-eight were outside the city. They were on multiple calls 30% of the time. They provided 24 instances of Mutual Aid. The department logged 348 hours on incidents. The Fire Marshall performed twenty-three business inspections and six residential. He approved 10 fire plans. The Codes division made 10 new contacts. They are also working with a developer to present a PUD agreement for the planning commission.
Mr. Bagwell reported everything has been covered in this meeting.
Mr. Burrell reported that the department picked up 204 tons of residential garbage for the month, fifty-four tons of commercial garbage, and 32 tons of C&D waste. The department picked up 9 roll carts and delivered 38 roll carts. They hauled 33 tons of recycled brush. They have been busy cutting grass and continuing planting on Main St. The trash trucks had some issues, but have been resolved. Mr. Price appreciates the patience of the citizens. Mr. Underwood noticed that there are times the department has to pick up fully mature trees which fill up an entire brush truck. This takes up a lot of time considering the load has to be taken to the landfill in Seneca. This makes it difficult to be efficient.
The Mayor stated we need a wood chipper.
Mr. Underwood reported the 14-year-old Dixie Boys team will be playing in the state tournament in Bluffton, SC. There are currently 460 participants registered for fall sports this year.
Mr. Woodward reported the Police Department participated in the Summer Nights on Short Street events. Chief Brinson participated in the dunking booth and Kimbler, the canine, put on an exhibition. The department participated in Use of Force Training. The Department hired a new police officer from Westminster. Officer Breland is already a certified officer. He praised Officer Colby Mize for displaying outstanding leadership. The department issued 289 tickets and made 26 arrests. City pool incidents are still under investigation. The mayor said, “They are doing a good job of writing tickets.”
Mr. Underwood reported the Utilities department is suggesting a change in the disconnect limit from $15 after the 20th of each month to a figure in the $30-$50 range. Most customers would not get cut off after one month. Effectively a customer would have two months to pay. Mr. Underwood said, “This is the most complaints he receives as a member of council.” The Mayor stated we need to clarify in committee if this is related to water only or the entire bill which includes garbage collection fees.
The department spent 3 days repairing a road at Stumphouse Park.
They also assisted with the drainage issue on College St. by providing some camera work for our engineers.
They did some slope stabilization at the Stadium.
New water plant and water main intake construction are progressing well.
They are in the process of acquiring new software for the new water meters. This will allow the staff to talk to a customer in real time regarding their current usage.
Mayor’s Comments: No comments were made.
Council went into executive session to discuss a contractual matter. No action was taken.
Brent Taylor, City Administrator