Week of July 23, 2003
officials reduce budget expenditures as part of budget analysis
West Pelzer officials completed their budget analysis in workshops conducted on Thursday and Friday last week.
Copies of the final budget will be available at the regular meeting of the Town Council on August 12.
Citizens are encouraged to attend the meeting and be informed about the finances of the town according to Mayor Peggy Paxton.
The budget is based on estimated revenue of $282,053 derived from taxes, franchise fees, fines, and service billings.
The council discussed ways to increase revenue such as annexation. Paxton says her long term goal is to have the town extend from Palmetto Road to the river.
Since Pelzer and West Pelzer will be combined on the same water and sewer line, Paxton sees annexation as a possibility which would be more efficient as well as provide Pelzer with police services.
Enforcement of town ordinances regarding property maintenance and animal control is another priority for the council and another way to increase revenue. Paxton says that a list has been compiled of 22 pieces of property which owners will need to clean up or face fines from ordinance violations.
Paxton also stated that the town ordinance regarding stray animals would be strictly enforced. A $20 fine plus a $5 boarding fee will be charged for violations, according to Paxton
Estimated expenditures including employee salaries and benefits, utilities, insurance and professional contracts total $238,086.
In an effort to reduce expenditures, the council chose to revise the major medical deductible for employee insurance from $100 to $350. This revision will net an annual savings to the town of almost $8,000.
Officials are also reviewing the current sanitation contract with Roger Scott in an effort to reduce costs. The current contract amounts to $31,164 annually.
Paxton also said that she had spoken with a representative from Nextel about cell phones. Paxton said that the town will be paying for eight employee phones only.
Consistent town hall office hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. will also be proposed and voted on at the next council meeting. The council will also work to insure that someone is always on hand to assist town citizens during those hours.
At the suggestion of Paxton, Michael Mahaffey of the sewer department agreed to move from an hourly employee to a salaried employee to better meet his job requirements and the needs of the town. The move should benefit both the town as well as Mahaffey, according to Paxton.
Additional savings will be realized by having employees of the sewer department perform some maintenance duties which were previously performed by Roger Scott and paid as a separate expenditure.
Paxton also discussed the possibility of issuing water bills every other month to save on administrative costs, postage and supplies. She stated that she was not sure how this would impact citizens on fixed incomes
Paxton reported that the town audit should be completed by September 30.
Anderson School District One will begin registration and orientation for the new school year next week. The first day of school is set for August 7.
Students may pay fees, meet with teachers and administrators, purchase yearbooks, and pick up schedules, parking permits and bus schedules on these days.
School fees will be $15 for elementary students, $20 for middle school students, and $55 for high school students.
Cedar Grove Elementary will hold registration and orientation on July 31 for 5K. Parents may attend sessions from 10 to 11 a.m. or from 7 to 8 p.m. A drop-in registration for first, second, third, fourth, and fifth grades will be held on August 5 from 2:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Concrete Primary will hold orientation for all students on August 4 from 5 to 7 p.m. Parents of kindergarten students may meet with teachers from 5:30 to 6 p.m. Parents of first grade students may meet with teachers from 6 to 6:30 p.m. Parents of second grade students may meet with teachers from 6:30 to 7 p.m.
Hunt Meadows Elementary will hold registration and orientation on July 28 at 6 p.m. for K5, second grade, fourth grade, and Special Education. K4, first grade, third grade, and fifth grade registration and orientation will be on July 29 at 6 p.m.
Palmetto Elementary will hold registration from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 to 3 p.m. on July 30 and July 31. An Open House will be held August 5 from 6 to 7:30 p.m.
Pelzer Elementary will hold registration and orientation for all grades on August 5 from 4 to 6 p.m.
Powdersville Elementary will hold registration and orientation August 4 at 7 p.m. for third grade and August 5 at 7 p.m. for fourth and fifth grades. Each session will begin with a general meeting in the multipurpose room.
Spearman Elementary will hold orientation and registration for all grades on August 5 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the gym.
West Pelzer Elementary will hold registration August 5 at 6 p.m. Orientation for 5K, first grade and second grades will be held in classrooms at 6 p.m. with fees paid in the gym at 6:30 p.m. Third, fourth and fifth grades will pay fees in the gym at 6 p.m. with orientation in classrooms at 6:30 p.m.
Wren Elementary will hold registration and orientation for all grades on August 5 from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Palmetto Middle will hold registration on the following dates: July 30 and July 31 from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. and from 1 to 3 p.m.; August 4 from 6 to 8 p.m. Orientation for new students and 6th grade will be held August 4 at 7 p.m.
Powdersville Middle will hold registration for all grades August 5 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Orientation for new students will be held on the same date at 6 p.m. in the gym.
Wren Middle will hold registration for 6th grade on August 5 from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Registration for 7th and 8th grades will be August 6 from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 4 p.m. The school office will be open for registration and payment of fees beginning July 21 Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Friday from 9 a.m. until noon.
Palmetto High will hold registration for all grades on July 29 and July 30 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. An Open House for all grades and the Freshman Academy will be held on August 5 from 5:30 to 8 p.m.
Wren High will hold registration for seniors on July 30 from 8 to 11:30 a.m., for juniors on July 31 from 8 to 11:30 a.m., and for sophomores on July 31 from 1 to 4 p.m.
A freshman registration and orientation will be held on July 31 from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Students will pick up schedules and pay fees from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Parents will stay for a brief meeting in the auditorium from 7:30 to 8 p.m. Students will stay for a dance/ice cream social until 10 p.m. Only rising Wren High School freshmen will be admitted to the dance.
Wren High will hold an Open House for all students on August 5 from 6 to 8 p.m. Students and parents will rotate through their classes meeting teachers on a shortened bell schedule.
Anderson School District One recently announced its policy for free and reduced meals for children served in schools under the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast program. Local school officials have adopted the following household size and income criteria for determining eligibility:
Income guidelines for free meals are as follows: Number in household, annual income, monthly income, weekly income:
For each additional family member add $4,082 annually, $341monthly or $79 weekly.
Income guidelines for reduced price meals are as follows: household size, annual income, weekly income:
For each additional family member, add $5,089 annually or $112 weekly.
Children from families whose income is at or below the levels shown may be eligible for free or reduced price meals.
For school officials to determine eligibility, the household must provide a food stamp or TANF case number certifying the household is currently eligible for either of the assistance programs and an adult household signature or names of all household members, the name and social security number of the adult household member signing the application form, monthly income by source for each household member and a signature of an adult household member certifying the information provided is correct.
Households receiving free or reduced benefits must notify school officials during the school year of any decreases in household size and any increases of more than $50 per month or $600 per year. Household must also notify officials of any termination of benefits for children under the food stamp or TANF programs.
Foster children may also be eligible for these benefits regardless of household size.
Parents or guardians who are dissatisfied with the ruling of a reviewing official may discuss the decision with the reviewer on an informal basis. Parents wishing to make a formal appeal may make a request either orally or in writing to Anderson District One Superintendent, Dr. W. R. Christopher, P. O. Box 99, Williamston S. C. 29697, for a hearing to appeal the decision.
If a household member becomes unemployed or if household size changes, the household should contact the school to file a new application. Such changes may make the children of the household eligible for free or reduced price meals if the income falls at or below levels.
A complete copy of the policy is on file in each school and in the office of the District Superintendent where it is available for review.
Williamston police officers recovered a stolen motorcycle last week. and investigated other incidents including:
July 9 - William Cory Foubert, 22, 209 Willingham Rd., Williamston, was arrested and charged with violation of S. C. gun law and possession of a stolen vehicle (motorcycle) after officers received a call regarding a person with a pistol in his pocket at Hardees, 1520 Anderson Dr., Williamston. A 2000 Kawasaki motorcycle valued at $3,000 , which was reported stolen in Anderson, was recovered. Sgt. J. T. Motes, D. W. Bryant investigated.
July 7 - Eckerd, 201 E. Main St., Williamston, reported a shoplifting incident in which a man removed unknown items setting off a sensor. J. T. Motes investigated.
July 7 - Bob Hammett, an employee of The Town of Williamston, reported a valve turned on at the Town Of Williamston treatment plant. J. T. Motes investigated.
July 6 - David Dyal Delonigan, 38, 3 Smith St., Pelzer, was arrested and charged with improper vehicle license, unsafe equipment and operating an uninsured vehicle after a red Subaru was observed on W. Main St. Reports state the vehicle had sparks coming from underneath and slick tires. S. W. Dooley investigated.
July 5 - Avila Alfredo Maya, 30, 150 Cherokee Rd., Williamston, was arrested and charged with failure to give proper signal and no drivers license after a vehicle was observed turning onto Mauldin St. without a signal. D. Munger.
July 5 - Keith Sailors, B. C. Moores, 17 Pelzer Ave., Williamston, reported a shoplifting incident in which three female juveniles left the store with items valued at $18.97. The items were recovered in a trash can at McDonalds.
July 21 - Debra Lynn Bowling, 40, 816 Beech Springs Rd., Pelzer, reported $150 in damage to a 2000 Saturn while the vehicle was parked at Milliken Cushman Plant, 409 Gossett Dr., Williamston. Sgt. J. T. Motes investigated.
July 20 - Dawn Jackson, 25, 323 E. #224 Williamston, reported a possible burglary at 104 Mattison St., Williamston. A screen was cut and torn. No entry was gained. P. D. Marter investigated.
July 18 - Dustin Rochester, 12 Davis St., Williamston, reported $50 in damage to a GMC SUV by pink paintballs. J. L. Barnes investigated.
July 18 - Charles Michael Martin, 18, 304 Belton Dr., Williamston, was arrested and charged with public disorderly conduct and possession of a controlled substance schedule IV after being observed walking in the center of Parker St. Martin allegedly had an orange bottle with no label containing 19 white round pills. Sgt. D. Munger investigated.
July 17 - Thomas Lee Patterson, 21, 1624 Piedmont Hwy. #5, Piedmont, was arrested and charged with driving left of center, possession of methamphetamine after a 1986 Buick was observed weaving and driving left of center on Cherokee Rd. and Mattison Circle. A passenger in the vehicle, Joshua Lucus Hawthorne, 311 McKittrick Rd., Pelzer, was charged with simple possession of marijuana and possession of methamphetamine. During a search of the vehicle, officers allegedly found a small green pouch which contained a digital scale, a pack of rolling papers and 1.4 grams of a white powdery substance believed to be methamphetamine. Hawthorne allegedly had 12 grams of a green leafy substance believed to be marijuana in his shoe reports state. Sgt. D. Munger, K. P. Evatt investigated.
July 21 - Marshall Chastain, 59, 107 Belton Dr., Williamston, was issued a summons for driving under suspension after a green Dodge truck was observed on Greenville Dr. with the front left headlight not working. According to reports, the license was suspended for failure to pay property tax. D. W. Alexander investigated.
July 20 - Sarah Reese, 53, 12 Webster Rd., Greenville, reported interior door handles valued at $20 removed from a 1984 Chrysler New Yorker. The vehicle was parked at 20 Brown St., Williamston.
July 20 - Paul Randall Smith 17, 109 Grant Dr., Pelzer, was arrested and charged with possession of beer/wine by a minor after being observed at Hardees with an open can of Bud Light. D. Baker investigated.
July 20 - Williamston officers investigated an incident at Scoops restaurant, 3 Greenville Dr., Williamston, in which two people were involved in a fight. Reports state several unknown subjects from Northern Anderson County also jumped in. No charges were filed.
July 13 - Officers on patrol reported a plate glass window broken out of a maintenance door located between Pagoda and Turners Barber Shop at 529 W. Main St., in Williamston. The report stated the damage could have been weather related. P. D. Marter investigated.
July 11 - Robert Jeffery Farmer, 29, 100 West 3rd St., Williamston, was arrested and charged with open container in public and possession of marijuana after being observed at Fast Fuel, Gossett and Main, with an open container of alcohol. Officers allegedly found 5 grams of a green leafy substance believed to be marijuana rolled into a cigarette. Sgt. D. Munger investiated.
June 9 - Carlos Israel Medrano, 13, 117 West 2nd St., Williamston reported a Next bike stolen. J. T. Motes investigated.
July 18 - Kandace Lyn McCall, 23, 220 Willingham Rd., Williamston, was arrested and charged with reckless driving and open container after a silver Toyota Corolla was observed on Gossett Dr. and W. Main St. Sgt. D. Munger, K. P. Evatt investigated.
Beginning the last week of July, eligible taxpayers who claimed the Child Tax Credit on their 2002 tax returns will automatically receive an advance payment of the 2003 increase in this credit, the Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service announced recently.
Taxpayers will not have to take any action to get this advance payment of up to $400 per qualifying child. The Treasury Department and IRS will perform all the calculations and automatically mail a notice and a check to each eligible taxpayer.
The only thing the taxpayer needs to do is cash the check, said Mark W. Everson, IRS Commissioner. If you qualify, we will send you a notice. Theres no need to call, no need to apply, no need to fill out another form. The IRS will do all the work. A few days after the notice, you will get the check.
The checks an advance payment of the 2003 increase in the Child Tax Credit will be based on the child tax credit claimed on the taxpayers 2002 tax return.
The Jobs and Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 increased the maximum child tax credit for 2003 to $1,000 per child, up from $600 for tax year 2002. The law further instructed the Treasury Department to provide the difference up to $400 per child as an advance payment to each eligible taxpayer this summer. The Treasury Department will issue about 25 million of these checks this year, beginning with three principal mailings on July 25, Aug. 1 and Aug. 8.
Taxpayers who filed returns after April 15 will receive their advance payments after the IRS processes their returns. They should not make any change to their 2002 returns or remittances based on an expectation of an advance payment check.
The IRS will send notices to taxpayers on July 22, July 29 and Aug. 5, informing them of their advance payment amount. The IRS urges taxpayers to hold on to these notices for their 2003 tax returns.
They will need to take the advance payment into account when determining the amount of their child tax credit on the 2003 tax return.
Taxpayers who are not eligible for the advance payment may still qualify for the increased child tax credit of up to $1,000 when they file the 2003 tax return next year.
For instance, a taxpayer who did not have a child in 2002, but had one in 2003, would not receive an advance payment but may qualify for the full $1,000 credit on the 2003 tax return.
Taxpayers who have had a change of address since their tax return was prepared should go to the post office and complete a change of address form or the tax credit check will not be forwarded to them.
The regular meeting of the Williamston Area Historic Commission WAHC will be held on Thursday, July 31st at 7 p.m. in the conference room of the Williamston Municipal Building. This will be a walk and discover meeting officials said.
After the business meeting, the group will leave the building and walk to the old City Hall where Charles Blakely will speak about the plans for the new Williamston Museum.
Next, the group will proceed to the Mineral Spring Park where John Busbin, Commanding Officer, Company D, Gist Rifles, will tell about the use of the park as a training and mustering camp for the Gist Rifles.
The group will then walk to the old depot where John Brannon will talk about the historic value and future plans for the depot.
All three gentlemen will be available for questions and answers. Light refreshments will be served.
The meeting is open to the public and there is no cost.
WAHC members are also sponsoring a drawing to win a set of signed and numbered Thomas Addison prints of his First Shot, Last Shot series of the War Between the States and a $50.00 Walmart gift certificate.
Tickets may be obtaind from WAHC members.
Proceeds from the drawing will be used to erect a flag pole at the Williamston cemetery.
For further information, please contact the WAHC Chairman, Brown Mahon III at 947-1477.