(3607) Week of Sept. 5, 2007
Water issues, funding
sources top discussion for County Council
By Stan Welch
Water, water everywhere, and in some cases, not a drop to drink. Issues about water dominated the September 4 meeting of the Anderson County Council.
One such issue was the proposed storm water ordinances which the County is faced with adopting in the next few weeks. That ordinance is the result of a mandate from the EPA, through DHEC at the state level, and to the County, defining the permitting process for storm water management.
During a public hearing on the issue Dan Harvell reported to Council Greenville County had established a fee structure which charged $24 a year for houses with one thousand square feet of roof area, and $26 a year for those houses with more than a thousand feet of roof area. He also reported that it costs Greenville County approximately $8 million a year to administer their storm water runoff program.
District Four Councilman Bill McAbee offered an amendment to the fee schedule proposed in the original ordinance. The amendment reduced the fees for each disturbed acre of land from $250 to $100, and placed a $2000 cap on the total fees. The original language allowed the $250 fine for each acre disturbed, regardless of how many acres were involved.
Councilwoman Cindy Wilson reminded Council that an organization called NEMO had appeared before Council three years ago to make a presentation on the matter. They were given about five minutes to speak. They made it clear that they would help the county prepare an ordinance, but Council decided to use Design South instead. As a result, we have spent thousands and thousands of dollars preparing this ordinance, and now were getting this amended version at the last minute to vote on.
The new, stricter requirements for storm water management measures to be put in place for smaller developments and individual projects will require an entire department devoted to implementing and enforcing the new regulations. Wilson caused some consternation when she asked to have the person who will be running the new department come to the microphone so she could ask them several questions.
Earlier, during citizen comments, one speaker inferred that the county employee who was present at Caters Lake with County Administrator Joey Preston would be the department head for the storm water department. That employee, Kelly Nichols, was recently certified by DHEC as an erosion prevention and sediment control inspector.
County Administrator Joey Preston denied that any decision had been made concerning the supervisor of the storm water management department. I am currently interviewing candidates for that job, but no decision has been made yet, said Preston.
Following approval of McAbees amendment, the ordinance received second reading approval.
The issue of safe, potable drinking water, or the lack of it, came up during the discussion on a proposed one cent sales tax for capital improvements. The issue was whether to establish a commission to create a list of projects to be funded, and to frame the referendum question for the 2008 election.
District Three Councilman Larry Greer stated that he would support the sales tax if and only if the construction of water lines in the Iva area was permitted under the state law for uses of such funds. If it is possible to construct water lines with these funds, then I will look at how far up the list of priorities those projects would be. If they are far enough up the ladder, then I will support the tax.
Greer said that there are people in the Iva area who do not have clean drinking water. There are people in my district who cant even do laundry at home. Now, I know we need roads and bridges, but clean water is more important than a road to drive on or a bridge to cross.
County Attorney Tom Martin stated that his first reaction was that the county would have to construct the projects funded by the sales tax, which would put them in the position of owning and operating a water system. That is apparently against county ordinance.
The question of whether a special purpose district could serve as the owning agency came up, and will be researched. Greer moved to table the proposal until that question was answered, but his motion failed by a 2-5 vote.
Councilwoman Wilson reminded Council that before the budget ordinance was amended in 2006 to prohibit the use of paving funds for any use except paving, grading and drainage, she had used her funds to leverage state and federal monies which were used in her district to install seventy miles of water lines.
When I came on Council, my district was like a third world country in terms of water lines. But we all got together, individuals and local officials, water providers and state and federal officials, we all worked together. Congressman Barrett and State Sen. Billy ODell and other elected officials, as well as the general public, all met and came up with a plan. I think that approach could work again. I would make a motion that we revise the ordinance to again allow the use of those funds for other purposes.
Chairman Waldrep declined to allow a vote on the motion, saying that it was inconsistent with the topic under discussion. You can make that motion, but in this context, it seems inappropriate. In another place, it would be more likely.
Wilson withdrew her motion, saying, My point is that there are alternatives to a referendum. This approach would also hasten the project.
Martin, when the issue came up again later in the meeting, pointed out that to amend the budget ordinance would require three readings and a public hearing. Wilson conceded that, but added that using the sales tax would take at least two years and a referendum.
Greer, Floyd, and Ms. Wilson all complained that the amended resolution was received too late to allow study before the meeting. I would have loved to have this in time to study it, said Greer.
I am having a great deal of trouble with all these changes. I dont know why we cant get these things sooner, said Floyd.
The commission was established by a 4-3 vote. Under state law, the County Council will appoint three of the six members, while the city of Anderson will appoint one member, based on its percentage of the countys population. The citys appointee will then appoint two others from municipalities in the county. Those six people will select projects for funding and prioritize them. They will also frame the referendum question that will appear on the ballot in the 2008 general election. County Council can vote only on accepting or rejecting the list pOf projects; they cannot amend it.
During Council members request for appropriations, Councilwoman Cindy Wilson, referring to Councils actions at a recent meeting during which various members appropriated her recreations funds against her wishes, asked that they all contribute to the Watkins Center Art Center in Honea Path. They teach art to the children there, and they have some wonderful teachers. But they need some supplies. Since you have spent all my money for me, I am asking that you contribute tot his wonderful program for the children. Chairman Waldrep allocated $250 from his recreation funds to the Center. No other members of Council responded.
District Two Councilwoman Gracie Floyd, during Councils remarks, announced that there are two areas in her district where the residents do not have clean safe water. She added that the cost of providing water to those areas would be $60,000.
I know we made a ruling about using paving funds, but Im hoping someone in their infinite wisdom can help me find a way to do something about this.
Ms. Wilson again pointed out that amending the budget ordinance could be one approach. Floyd asked transportation director Holt Hopkins how much she currently has in her paving fund. He told her she had $191,000 available.
Ms. Wilson again made a motion to amend the ordinance. I move we amend the ordinance to allow Ms. Floyd or any other Council member to use those funds for other purposes. Ms. Floyd thanked Wilson for her offer of a motion but added that she was pursuing one other avenue to obtain the funding.
Councilwoman Wilsons efforts to obtain a resolution by the Council promising to accept no further campaign contributions from those who do business with the County did not reach a formal vote because it wasnt presented in the form of a resolution. (See story elsewhere in this issue.)
By Stan Welch
Anderson County continues to enjoy steady, if unspectacular growth, both economically and in terms of population, according to the twenty year comprehensive land use plan presented recently by the planning department.
That growth has produced an estimated population at the start of this year of 187,000. By the year 2010, the population will exceed 200,000, and five years later, 220,000.
The annual growth rate, county wide, of just under two per cent, or 3300 new residents, is bringing other changes to the make-up of the county, as well. For example, the percentage of seniors in the general population is just under fourteen per cent, slightly above the state average. An increase in the older portion of the population brings with it a number of considerations, such as health care, disposable income and level of civic involvement.
Other demographic information in the twenty year plan shows that the average age of the Anderson resident is thirty seven years. Fifty two per cent of Anderson residents are female, and eighty two per cent are Caucasian. Only sixteen per cent are African-American, well below the state average of thirty per cent.
The level of education is increasing, which given the baseline figures isnt remarkable. At the 2000 census, there was more than a quarter of the population, aged 25 years or more, which had no high school diploma or GED. Still, that was a significant improvement over the 1990 findings, which showed less than half the population of that age with a diploma or GED.
The latest figures indicate that twenty five per cent of adults have an associate degree or some college. Sixteen per cent have bachelors degrees or higher levels of education.
Not surprisingly, the increase in educational attainment has been accompanied by significant increases in personal income. In 1990, the average per capita income in Anderson was $12,027. By 2000 it had increased by more than fifty per cent, to $18,365. Median household income saw similar increases, going from $25,748 in 1990 to $36,807 ten years later. Median family income also rose, from $31,228 to $44,229 in ten years. Those figures are slightly below the state average, but represent considerable improvement, according to the report.
Still, nine per cent of Anderson Countys families, and twelve per cent of its people, live at or below the poverty line.
The county is divided into nine census count divisions, or CCDs. The Brushy Creek CCD, which includes the Wren/Powderville area, saw a population growth rate of 25.5 %, deemed low to moderate by the study. Two high growth clusters in the Powdersville area accounted for the majority of growth in that area. The land use plan predicts a slowing of growth in the Powdersville area, as usable land becomes scarcer.
Growth along the Highway 8 and Highway 88 corridors is expected to continue in the coming years, however, as well as in the Wren community.
The Williamston CCD, which includes Williamston, Pelzer, and West Pelzer, also grew steadily during the last decade, at a rate of 20.9%. Future growth in that area is expected along existing and expanding municipal limits as infrastructure is expanded, making development possible.
Each of the two CCDs has approximately 20,000 residents currently. Their proximity to Greenville County and its economic engine is considered one of their main assets.
The land use plan indicates that current and proposed infrastructure improvements should continue to make such growth in the two CCDs attractive.
By Stan Welch
Tuesday night, District Seven Councilwoman Cindy Wilson continued an initiative she began two weeks earlier to address some of the political issues which continue to separate the Council.
District Seven Ms. Wilson made a presentation at the County Council meeting two weeks ago, entitled The Way Forward. The presentation consisted of her prepared statement concerning the need to request a federal investigation into the events at Caters Lake in 2006, as well as the threatening and harassing letters received by some members of Council, and other county staff members.
Wilson followed that statement with a motion to have the Council formally seek a federal investigation, to include both the FBI and the federal postal inspectors, into those matters. Her motion died as the result of a 3-3-1 vote, with Councilman Greer abstaining.
At Tuesdays meeting, Wilson again read a prepared statement, in which she questioned the propriety, though not the legality, of Council members accepting campaign contributions from individuals and companies which do business with the County. She also pointed out that many of those same contributors have also helped fund campaigns for other candidates for the Council, as well as incumbents.
Wilsons initiative clearly refers to the previous contributions by such corporations and related individuals as Allied Waste, which purchased the Big Creek landfill from the county; B.P. Barber and Design South, engineering firms which frequently receive county contracts; realtor Marshall Carithers, who has consulted on or brokered several large real estate transactions for the county; and other contributors. Among Council members and candidates receiving such contributions are Council members Floyd, Greer, and Thompson, and candidates Ed Jean, Robert Austin, Julia Barnes. The three candidates named all ran against Wilson at one time or another.
Wilson conceded that state and federal law allow such practices, and that some courts have ruled that campaign contributions are protected under the Constitution as free speech. I acknowledge this circumstance, but it need not prohibit us from acting to erase any doubts, any perceptions by the public that our favor as a political body, or as individual members of that body, can be obtained with a political contribution said Wilson in her statement.
She went on to say that like Caesars wife, the Council must be beyond reproach. We must make it clear to the people whose trust we serve that there is a line defining our behavior, and that we are aware of that line, and we will not cross it.
As she did at the earlier meeting, Wilson followed her statement with a motion. This one sought a resolution from council.
While any ordinance we might pass dealing with this issue would be moot, we can and should unanimously approve a resolution stating clearly our intention as a Council, as well as individuals, to accept no contribution of funds, or in kind services, either directly or indirectly, from any contributors who have a business interest before the Council or that have come before the council within the last year, read the statement.
She went on to put that in the form of a motion, and expressed her personal intentions to honor the spirit of the resolution regardless of the outcome of the vote.
A special ceremony was held Saturday, August 25 for the relocation and burial of Williamstons Bicentennial time capsule.
The time capsule was originally buried at the old city hall in 1976 as part of the countrys bicentennial celebration.
The capsule, actually an infanct burial vault, was recently dug up by town employees at the direction of Councilman Marion Middleton, Jr..
The event caused some controversey after Mayor Phillip Clardy raised concerns about the authority of Council members to direct town employees to do anything without a formal vote of Council.
Middleton said that he took the action only after several dates that were set by the mayor had passed with no action being taken to move it to a new resting place in front of the Municipal Center.
The old city hall property, which included 1.32 acres, was sold at auction for $225,000.
When it was sold, Mayor Clardy indicated that the building and time capsule buried on the property would be given back to the town.
It was stated during the auction, that the property was being sold with the intent that the building be moved within 120 days and at the expense of the town.
After months of discussing the possibility of moving the building, which was constructed in 1914, town officials decided to let it be demolished. The 92 year old building was torn down in May of this year.
Town officials and Developer Jim Simpson, who purchased the property, say plans are to incorporate it into a proposal to entice a grocery store back into downtown Williamston.
According to an articles in The Journal during 1976, the time capsule is actually two capsules placed in an infant burial vault. There was no list of items included published in The Journal. News articles indicated that items were collected over a period of months and included photos of the towns new water plant and brief history and photo of congregations of local churches.
Councilman Richard Jacks coordinated the effort. The capsule was placed in the ground on December 5, 1976.
After its reburial this year, it will not be seen again until it is dug up and opened on July 4th, 2076. The new location is marked by the original plaque which designated the purpose and location when it was placed in the ground at the old city hall building 31 years ago.
Attending the ceremony were historian and author Gene Welborn and former Town Clerk Frances Wilson, who was clerk at the time it was first buried in 1976.
Also attending were Councilman Marion Middleton, Councilman David Harvell, County Council District 7 representative Cindy Wilson, State House Representative Michael Thompson, town employees and others interested in seeing the capsule.
A similar capsule is being put together by the Sesquicentennial Committee and will also be buried in front of the Municipal Center.
It is expected to include a DVD video of the program held in conjunction with the towns Spring Water Festival.
Three local organizations have been selected for grant funding through The Duke Endowment.
AnMed Health will receive $150,000 to develop oncology programs; the Boys Home of the South Inc. will receive $25,000 for unrestricted operating support for maintaining national accreditation and New Foundations Children and Family Services, Inc.will receive $50,000 for unrestricted operating support for maintaining national accreditation.
The Duke Endowment was established in 1924 by North Carolina industrialist and philanthropist James B. Duke to improve lives and communities in North Carolina and South Carolina by educating minds, strengthening bodies, enriching spirits and nurturing children.
In the first two quarters of 2007, the Trustees of the foundation awarded 360 grants totaling more than $98 million.
All grantmaking at The Duke Endowment is guided by an Indenture of Trust, in which Mr. Duke set forth specific funding guidelines. The Trustees, however, have full discretion over year-to-year disbursements.
Each year, the Trustees of The Duke Endowment have an extraordinary opportunity to strengthen institutions and encourage innovations that will improve lives throughout the Carolinas, said Russell M. Robinson II, chairman of the board of the Endowment. We are always humbled by the responsibility and the privilege of doing this work.
Grants from The Duke Endowment in the first two quarters include:
· $56.5 million to support the pursuit of educational excellence
· $26.1 million to improve access to quality health care with a focus on prevention and early intervention
· $7.5 million to serve vulnerable children who lack secure and supportive families
· $7.5 million to support and challenge rural United Methodist churches as they seek to reach out to and serve their communities
· $813,976 for collaborative efforts to improve lives in the Carolinas
A number of the grants in this funding cycle are substantial, multi-year gifts which reflect the Endowments commitment to investing in lasting solutions, said Gene Cochrane, president of the Endowment. We have learned that significant, sustained investments are more effective in achieving solid growth and accomplishing serious change in all four of the sectors we support.
The Endowment awarded grants to the four educational institutions named by Mr. Duke in his trust: Davidson College, Johnson C. Smith University and Duke University in North Carolina and Furman University in South Carolina. Funds support general university operations, capital projects, and special programs that expand educational opportunities.
Grants include $15 million over five years to Davidson College to help the school eliminate loans from its financial aid packages. Beginning this fall, Davidson will replace student loans with grants, which will enable students to graduate debt-free.
The Endowments health care grants target programs that improve access to health care, upgrade the quality and safety of health care delivery and expand prevention and early intervention programs that support wellness.
This year $3.3 million in grants were awarded to the North Carolina and South Carolina hospital associations to help establish community-based networks to improve access to health care for low-income residents.
Grants from the Child Care Division aim to serve children who are without the benefit of secure and supportive families. The Endowment hopes to help these children reach developmental milestones and prepare for adulthood. The Endowment granted a total of $500,000 to organizations that support youth as they transition out of the foster care system. Funded programs focus on encouraging youth to go to college, become employed and avoid criminal activity and unplanned pregnancy.
The Endowments Rural Church Division responds to and challenges rural United Methodist churches as they seek to reach out to and serve their communities, strengthens rural churches through quality facility construction that supports congregational and outreach programs, and rewards retired United Methodist ministers and their families for their service in the North Carolina and Western North Carolina conferences of the United Methodist church.
This year the Endowment awarded more than $12 million to Duke University Divinity School to assess and improve clergy health in North Carolina. Programs will emphasize physical and nutritional health, while addressing emotional, spiritual and intellectual health factors as well. The Endowment and the Divinity School will work together on this project over a seven-year period.
The Endowment awarded nearly $350,000 to support an early childhood initiative, a partnership between the Endowments Child Care, Health Care and Rural Church divisions.
The Duke Endowment also is collaborating with the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust, South Carolina First Steps and North Carolinas Partnership for Children (Smart Start). This multi-year program aims to improve the health and well-being of young children and their families.
Through this initiative, a nurse will assist first-time, low-income parents with prenatal care and education, continuing to support the family through the childs first two years of life.
The Duke Endowment, headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., seeks to fulfill the legacy of James B. Duke by improving lives and communities in the Carolinas through higher education, health care, rural churches and childrens services. With assets of nearly $3 billion, the Endowment has awarded $2.2 billion in grants since its inception in 1924.
Ivan Kershner, a Palmetto Middle School teacher and a recipient of the prestigious $25,000 Milken Educator Award in 1995, has been awarded a community service grant from the Milken Festival for Youth (MFFY) program.
The grant will be used to preserve and maintain several historic cemeteries which are in need of attention and repair as part of Kershners project, Marking the Past.
Students at Palmetto Middle School will adopt these important community spaces. In addition to repairing the physical appearance of the cemeteries and preserving historical headstones, the students will incorporate academic activities as they learn about the persons interred and their place in South Carolinas history. This service learning project will involve approximately 250 students, 11 teachers, and several local and state historic preservation organizations. As the historic sites are preserved, a new sense of community pride will be created.
Competition for the grants, which are open to award-winning Milken Educators and Milken Scholars, is highly competitive. Approximately 4,000 students will be involved in this years projects. During the school year representatives from the Milken Family Foundation will personally visit the sites to participate first-hand in the activities. Each project will culminate with a celebration in which local and/or state dignitaries recognize the accomplishments of the students efforts.
For two decades, Milken Festival for Youth has provided more than a million students with hands-on opportunities to make meaningful volunteer contributions in their local communities. The organization, based in Santa Monica, California, is pleased to announce that 22 grants, in 17 states, will be awarded for the upcoming 2007-2008 school year.
The landscape of America changes for the better through every act of good citizenship. The Milken Festival for Youth program seeks out innovative projects that address pressing local needs, said Greg Gallagher, MFFY program administrator. And, while the students are creating positive changes in their communities, they gain an understanding of the valuable contributions they each can make. It is the ultimate win-win!
Williamston police officers found a number of persons driving under suspension recently as they investigated the following incidents:
August 21 Ptl. M.A. Semones, Jr. and Sgt. A. Digirolamo, Jr. stopped a white Chevy Blazer for doing 48 miles an hour in a 35 mile an hour zone. The driver, Jennifer L. Spagnualo, WF, 32, 511", 150 pounds, blond/blue, of 108 Crappie Dr., was driving under suspension. She was arrested and transported to WPD.
August 18 Ptl. M.W. Ritter observed a vehicle that he knew to be driven by a suspect with a suspended license. He stopped the vehicle and found that David Wayne Blair, WM, 38, 57", 210 pounds, brn.brn, of 15 Ellison St., was driving under suspension (3rd offense). He was arrested and transported to WPD.
August 18 Cpl. D.W. Bryant investigated a complaint of theft at 200 S. Hamilton St. Jamie Bratcher reported that someone had entered his carport and stole a chain saw and a grill. The loss was valued at $550.
August 17 Ptl. Ritter conducted a traffic stop on a Lincoln Navigator with a paper out of state tag. The vehicle pulled into the Sav-Way and the passenger got out and went in the store. While speaking to the driver, Ritter saw an open beer can on the passengers side. When the passenger came out, Ritter smelled alcohol on his breath. The subject, Tomas Ferreira Herrara, WM, 40, 56", 175, blk/brn, of 41 Middleton Blvd, agreed to a search and began to empty his pockets. A rock of crack cocaine was in his pocket and he was arrested and transported to WPD.
August 15 Ptl. M.A. Semones, Jr. and Cpl. D. W. Bryant responded to a two car accident at 307 E. Main St. They found that one of the drivers, Francisca Rodriguez, WF, 26, 52", 140 pounds, blk/brn, of 344 HI Taylor Rd. was driving without a drivers license. She was arrested and transported to WPD.
August 12 Sgt. A. Digirolamo, Jr., with Reserve Officer D.C. Dill, stopped a white Oldsmobile for turning right on red illegally. The driver, James Williams Thomas, WM, 24, 510", 160 pounds, brn/brn, of Simpsonville, was found to be in possession of approximately ten grams of marijuana. He was also driving under suspension (2nd offense). He was arrested and transported to WPD.
Williamston author and nature photographer Thomas King begins fall programming at the Anderson County Museum with a presentation on waterfalls in the Upstate. The Saturday program is scheduled for Sept.15 at 1:30p.m. Tom has won local contests and a state contest sponsored by the SC Department of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism. An avid preservationist, King will introduce the audience to the pristine wilderness of the area and encourage everyone to experience upstate waterfalls. The presentation will include myths and legends of the Upstate, the rock structure of waterfalls, and the classification of waterfalls with photos.
For more information, call the Museum at 864-260-4737.
The Anderson County Museum is located at 202 East Greenville Street, Anderson. Hours of operation are: Tuesdays: 10 am to 7 pm, Wednesday through Saturday: 10 am to 4 pm. Museum admission is free.
Under the category of things not being as they appear, Deputy J.M. Chandler was on his way to an alarm call on August 24 when he saw a white male standing beside a tan vehicle.
Chandler said the man with a sledge hammer raised above his head appeared to be standing over an unconscious woman slumped on to her side. Chandler, assuming an assault was underway, stopped and challenged the man, who explained that he was trying to help the woman.
Chandler found that the woman was in pain and screaming, because her left hand was caught between the door frame and the rolled up window. The man had tried to roll the window down but it was stuck, so he was trying to break the window with the sledge.
Chandler covered her face with a jacket and tried to wedge the hammer handle between the glass and the door to break it. He was successful but subsequently cut his hand and had to receive medical treatment.
August 24 S.C. Weymouth and B.C. Kelley responded to 1037 Erskine Rd. where Aaron Coponen, of AHO Homes, stated that someone had stolen 1200 feet of copper wire, a 20 foot extension ladder and had damaged a heating and air unit trying to remove copper. The total loss was estimated at $2550.
August 24 J.R. McClellan was dispatched to 2128 Bethany Church Rd. where Joseph Little reported that his F350 Ford Truck, red in color, and a 24 foot red goose neck trailer had been stolen. The truck and trailer both had advertisements for the Sign shop on them. The value of the two items was $13,000.
August 26 C. Whitfield responded to 1135 Blount Rd. where Robert Brown reported the theft of his trailer, made from an old boat trailer. The trailer was black with reflecting tape down both sides.
August 25 J.R. Finley responded to a complaint at 7 Blake St. where he found Shera Osborne, WF, 42, 5/6", 150 pounds, brn/blue, of Anderson, unconscious behind the wheel of her vehicle in the driveway of a vacant home. She was arrested for disorderly conduct.
August 25 T.B. Dugan was dispatched to 103 Pineview Dr. where Francis League. WF, 54, reported that Ralph Hollingsworth, WM, 58, was trying to drive the vehicle that she owned. Since she had a registration for the vehicle and he had no evidence that he made the payments, Dugan told him that he was not entitled to drive the car. Dugan left, but was called back about an hour and half later. League reported that Hollingsworth had attacked her as she lay on the sofa, tearing her pants trying to get the keys from the pocket. Hollingsworth was arrested for criminal domestic violence, and League was transported to the hospital by EMS due to chest pains.
August 25 T.B. Dugan was dispatched to 1604 Easley Hwy, where Robert Garrett reported that his 1992 Honda station wagon had broken down at that location and when he returned for it, it was gone. It was valued at $5000.
August 25 T.B. Dugan observed a vehicle in the area of Campbell Rd. and Hwy. 81 with a tag that he confirmed to belong to a stolen vehicle. He stopped the truck, which was pulling a black utility trailer with several items on it. The truck was reported stolen from Greenville County, and the driver, Sally Rhodes, WF, 29, 57", 190 pounds, brn/grn, of 209 Pamela Dr. in Williamston, was arrested and transported to ACDC. The trailer was not listed as stolen and was placed on a found property report.
August 26 T.B. Dugan saw a 1996 Honda Accord on Campbell Rd. displaying tag # 130 WEV. The tag was reported stolen by the Simpsonville Police Department. The driver, Chanda Bell, WF, 23, 53", 115 pounds, blond/blue, of 102 Harper St. in Williamston, was placed into investigative detention, along with the passenger, until Inspector Ashley arrived to take over the investigation. Dugan found a VIN on the car that matched a car reported stolen from Pickens County. He read Bell her rights and she said she had just learned three days earlier that the car was stolen. Dugan asked if there were any drugs in the truck and she said there was some methamphetamine. Reports state Dugan also found marijuana and several different types of pills.
August 24 D.W. Davis responded to 104 Merritt Rd. where Jacob Landrum reported that someone had entered his yard and taken two trimmers from his truck. They were valued at 4800.
August 24 B.K. Baxter was dispatched to 212 Riverside Dr. where David McClain reported that someone had stolen two generators from his shed. The two generators were valued at $1900 total.
August 25 D.C. Whitfield responded to 205 McNeely Rd. where Amanda Belk, WF, 19, reported that she had been assaulted.
August 25 J.R. Finley responded to 142 Grace Lane, where Larry Richardson stated that someone had stolen a trailer and tools from his property. The trailer, two augers, and other equipment and lumber on the trailer were valued by Richardson at approximately $4000.
August 25 D.W. Davis responded to 2531 River Rd. where he found Susan Elaine Easthagen, WF, 34, 56", 135 pounds, blond/brn, at the home of her husband, Major Darms Easthagen, Jr., WM, 61, in violation of an order of protection signed by a family court judge last month. She was arrested for violation of the court order.
August 24 T.B. Dugan was dispatched to 114 Zippo Pines Rd. where Scott Bagrosky reported the theft of $6100 worth of auto parts for a Ford Mustang, including a turbo, a computer system and other high performance parts.
August 24 C.L. Nimmons was dispatched to 6535 Midway Rd., where Anthony Oliver reported the theft from their home of more than $30,000 worth of jewelry belonging to his wife,
Levi Leipheimer (Discovery Channel ) took the lead in the final three finishing circuits and won the Stars and Stripes Jersey at the 2007 USA Cycling Professional Road Race Championship in Greenville Sunday. Leipheimer won in a time of 4 hours 22 minutes 19 seconds. Teammate George Hincapie, who won the road race championship last year, finished second, one minute and 11 seconds behind. Third place was taken by Neil Shirley (Jittery Joes), 114 behind the winner.
2007 has been a dream come true for me. And to stand on the podium in Paris and win a stage in the Tour (de France), that was a dream for me since I was 13. And to come here to Greenville and be the U.S. champion, thats more than I ever dreamed of, said Leipheimer, who kissed his Discovery jersey when he crossed the finish line of the 110-mile road race all alone. Leipheimer took third place at the 2007 Tour de France.
Greenville resident and defending road race champion Hincapie was the favorite for the huge crowds that gathered along the course, which were close to 50% larger than last year. Total attendance for the weekend was estimated to be 85,000, for both the individual time trial and road race.
Shirley, a 29-year-old from San Diego, California, has been consistently strong throughout 2007. He won the King of the Mountain award jersey at this years Philadelphia International. Danny Pate, who finished third last year, was fifth this year. And the winner of Saturdays USA Cycling Professional Individual Time Trial Championship presented by The Cliffs, David Zabriskie, did not finish the road race. Thirty riders finished the race, similar numbers to last year.
The field included 114 cyclists for the 23rd edition of the USA Cycling Professional Road Race Championship, held for a second consecutive year in Greenville. Race fans in downtown Greenville were treated to seeing the pro peloton pass 10 times, including three new start circuits to start the race. Four of those laps, 21.85 miles each in length, included the climb over the 2000-foot Paris Mountain, one of the most prominent ridges in the area south of the Blue Ridge Mountains. It was on the second pass over Paris Mountain that the field began to break apart. By the final lap riders were clocked at average speeds of 40 miles per hour in downtown Greenville.
The Road Race was part of the Greenville Hospital System USA Cycling Professional Championships and a full weekend of activities for Labor Day weekend in Greenville. On Saturday the USA Cycling Professional Individual Time Trial Championship presented by The Cliffs was contested from The Cliffs at Mountain Park to The Cliffs Valley. Sunday morning, prior to the Road Race Championship, 600 recreational cyclists raised $86,000 in the Palmetto Peloton Project in a non-competitive ride to benefit the Greenville Hospital System Oncology Research Institute and the Lance Armstrong Foundation.
Piedmont resident and Anderson School District One Board member Nancy Upton sings the national anthem just before the start of the Greenville Hospital System USA Cycling Professional Championships held in Greenville over the Labor Day weekend. A field of 114 professional cyclists, representing the best in the United States, competed in the race Sunday. Thirty riders finished the race which in addition to circuits around downtown, included four laps, 21.85 miles in length each, with a climb over Paris Mountain.
The North Carolina/South Carolina State Championship bike race which took place Saturday in the Fork Shoals area of Southern Greenville County. The event was staged at Fork Shoals Elementary School on McKelvy Rd. The event featured several local riders, as well as riders from out of state participating in several categories. Though it was held the same weekend as the USA Cycling Professional Championship in Greenville, it was not a part of the professional cycling event. For more information go to www.nc-scroadracechampionship.com.
By Stan Welch
Its becoming clearer and clearer that two issues are going to dominate the political landscape during the coming national elections. Those two issues are related in some ways, but not so closely that a single position can be taken on them. They require their own solutions.
The first issue is the war in Iraq. Many Americans, men and women of good conscience and patriotism, have lost faith in both the war itself and the way in which it has been conducted. Many feel that lies were told to justify the invasion of Iraq. As one who grew up politically during the Viet Nam era, being lied to about a war is nothing new. In fact, it is an old, old story, best exemplified by the adage that the first casualty of war is the truth.
Thousands of American lives have been lost, although that number is dwarfed by the tens of thousands of Iraqis killed. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been spent trying to quash an insurgency that shows little sign of weakening. Our national economy has been affected, lives have been shattered, and a promising presidency has been damaged beyond repair. Sound familiar?
Happily, one horrible mistake that this country made during Viet Nam has not been repeated since, in either the first Gulf War, or this one. The men and women who have been deployed, uprooted, maimed, crippled and killed, all in the name of American foreign policy, have almost universally received the gratitude, the respect and the honor that they deserve. One thing that the Nam experience apparently taught America is that the instruments of war are not to be blamed, instead of the wagers of war.
Still, candidates on both sides are lining up, either to show support for the war and its management, or to denounce it and offer their own solutions. I believe it was Albert Einstein who said, Mankind prepares for war like prodigious giants, and prepares for peace like retarded pygmies. He was a wise man, as well as a genius. Our record at winning armed conflicts is formidable. Our record at sowing peace across the conquered battlefields is discouraging and distressing.
Closer to home, illegal immigration alternates between a slow simmer and the occasional boil over. Anyone with any sense knows that come next fall, the issue will be boiling, not simmering.
Issues like the costs of providing social services such as welfare, health care, housing, and jobs to those who sneak across our borders are legitimate and frightening. But they pale in comparison to the security issue created by this nations porous borders and preposterous immigration strategy.
How can this administration even pretend that our country is secure, while thousands of foreigners stream illegally across our borders each day? How can we be expected to accept the meaningless assurances that this government offers?
We know that less than ten per cent of all cargo reaching our nations ports is even casually inspected. We know that unregulated imports of food and medical products, as well as serious flaws in our domestic, and supposedly safe, food supply systems have sparked outbreaks of disease in recent months. And those disasters resulted from good old incompetence and carelessness, not any organized intent to do harm. Imagine what someone who wanted to poison us could do? What happens when its people dying from contaminated Chinese products and not dogs?
How will we feel about our governments passionate embracing of the global economy then? It wasnt enough that it cost millions of American jobs. What if it starts to cost thousands of American lives?
So candidates are all talking tough about how we must secure our borders, except of course, for those who would like to see even more of our intrusive neighbors walking into American voting booths next November and pulling their levers. Or those whose corporate and personal bank accounts are swollen from profits derived from cheap, undocumented labor.
What should happen is that every candidate who promises to secure our borders should be disqualified from their race for office. Automatically. They are either incredibly naïve, or believe that we are. They are lying to us and hoping that reassurances about our safety will be accepted as a substitute for assurance. They have lied to us about this war, just like they did about the war in Iraq, and in Viet Nam, and in Korea.
The war in Iraq was going to keep us from having to fight terrorists at home. Well, the terrorists are here, my friends, and in numbers we cannot even imagine. They dont all have bombs or pilots licenses, or nerve gas or guns. Some of them just have a determination that what is America today will be theirs tomorrow.
A frequently asked poll question is Do you feel safer today than you did before September 11, 2001? It is difficult, if not impossible, to give an unqualified yes to that question. We are safer to the extent that knowing there is an enemy out there makes us safer. But can anyone really argue that the war in Iraq has diminished the terrorist threat? Can anyone argue that our borders are anywhere near safe?
So the next election will be about who can command us, not just our military, but our nation, in this coming struggle? Who can marshal our resources and put them to work most efficiently? Do our troops belong in Iraq, or are they more needed along our own borders? Do we need to spend the billions we are spending in Iraq on enlarging our armed forces instead?
Is our prolonged participation in a foreign civil war more important than the battle for our own borders? Are we sacrificing our own national identity to try and establish that for another country?
The candidate, regardless of party, who can best frame the issues of our security, and how to achieve it, will be that commander. The vote you cast next November will be for the man or woman who can lead us in this struggle. Sadly, choosing such a commander may still be too little too late.
Seems to me we should have started fighting back a long time ago.
By Stan Welch
Despite persistent rumors of a Food Lion supermarket being in the works, more than a year and a half after a transfer of sewer lines between School District One and Anderson County was approved in order to allow development of a shopping center in the Wren area, the site remains bare of any signs of progress.
In November of 2005, following more than a year of negotiations, The District One School Board unanimously approved transferring two pump stations and approximately 10,000 feet of sewer lines to the County. Dr. Wayne Fowler, District superintendent, said at the time that the transfer accomplished two things. First, it got the school district out of the sewer business. We had built that system to serve Wren Elementary and Wren Middle Schools because there was no other system in place. Also, the transfer makes possible development in that area, which should be a benefit.
The local isolated system remains the only sewer lines in the area.
Wes Nalley, of Nalley Construction Company, said at the time that there were no specific plans in place at that time to develop the property. Within weeks, however, substantial site preparation work was performed, clearing and grading part of the nineteen acre site, which is located at the corner of Highway 81 and Wren School Road. Since then, no other activity has taken place.
Calls to Mr. Nalley this week went unanswered.
The agreement called for the developer to upgrade one of the lift stations, and to perform maintenance on the other one. Once that was done, the County would accept the lines into its system and assume responsibility for them.
Anderson County Planning Director Jeff Ricketson indicated that the transfer had been accomplished, and that the County has provided Nalley with written confirmation that the site could tap onto the existing lines.
We have given them that written acknowledgment, but we have received absolutely no plans for site work or construction. We hear the same rumors about Food Lions and Blooms and other stores that the public hears, but we have nothing from any developer concerning plans for that site, said Ricketson this week.
District Six councilman Ron Wilson, whose election came after the transfer of the lines, said he understood that any such plans were on hold. I have heard nothing about any movement on that site. What the developers plans are I cant say. Of course, like everyone in that area, I would love to see a supermarket anchoring a shopping center on that corner.