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Minutes Regular Meeting 09/11/12

Sumter County Council
Regular Meeting
September 11, 2012 - Held at 6:00 p.m.
Sumter County Administration Building -- County Council Chambers
Third Floor, 13 East Canal Street , Sumter, South Carolina



  1. Chairman Eugene Baten, Council District #7
  2. Vice Chairman, Larry Blanding, Council District #6
  3. Councilman Artie Baker, Council District #2
  4. Councilman James R. Byrd, Council District #3
  5. Councilman Charles T. Edens, Council District #4
  6. Councilwoman Vivian Fleming McGhaney, Council District #5
  7. Councilwoman Naomi D. Sanders, District  #1





Mary W. Blanding, Clerk to Council

Gary Mixon, County Administrator

Lorraine Dennis, Assist. County Administrator

George McGregor, Planning Director

Pam Craven, Finance Director

Johnathan Bryan, County Attorney

The Honorable Carolina Richardson

Keysa Rogers, Budget Analyst


Two Sheriff Deputies






Approximately 37 members of the public were in attendance.



CALL TO ORDER:  Chairman of Council, Eugene R. Baten, called the meeting to order. 

INVOCATION:  Councilwoman Vivian Fleming McGhaney gave the invocation. 

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:  All in attendance repeated the Pledge of Allegiance.    

 APPROVAL OF AGENDA:  Chairman Baten asked the Clerk to Council if there were any adjustments to the agenda.  The Clerk stated that there were no adjustments to the agenda; therefore, the Chairman called for a motion to approve the September 11, 2012, agenda.    

ACTION:  MOTION was made by Councilman Baker, seconded by Vice Chairman Blanding, and unanimously carried by Council to approve the September 11, 2012, agenda as presented. 

MINUTES:  REGULAR MEETING HELD ON AUGUST 28, 2012:  Chairman Baten stated that he would entertain a motion to approve the minutes of Sumter County Council’s Regular Meeting held on August 28, 2012.  

ACTION:  MOTION was made by Vice Chairman Blanding, seconded by Councilman Byrd, and unanimously carried by Council to approve the minutes of the regular County Council meeting held on August 28, 2012, as presented.


Development/Rezoning Request –

Mr. George McGregor, the Planning Director, presented this rezoning request to Council for third reading approval.He stated that there have been no changes to this rezoning request since first reading.(Councilman Edens stated that he recused himself from voting or discussing this matter.)

ACTION:  MOTION was made by Councilman Baker, seconded by Councilman Byrd, and unanimously carried by Council to grant third reading approval and adoption of this rezoning request as presented. 

Mr. George McGregor presented this proposed ordinance amendment to Council for third reading consideration.Mr. McGregor reminded Council that during the meeting on August 28, 2012, Council asked him to review the ordinance as it relates to alternative language for signage for the mobile vendors.He presented the following information to Council for consideration.

Delete #9 under 5.c.6.j of the draft and replace with the following

9.Signage, for purposes of this Ordinance, means a manufactured banner or rigid sign which is attached to a Mobile Food Unit and may not exceed 32 square feet.

Unattached banners or rigid signs are not permitted.

Words and decorations painted onto a Mobile Food Unit and the vehicle used to transport a Mobile Food Unit trailer are not considered signage for the purposes of this ordinance, so long as all other requirements of this section are met.

The change in the ordinance is consistent with how most other temporary usages are treated as it pertains to signage.

Councilman Edens asked Mr. McGregor to clarify produce on a vacant lot and mobile vendors on a vacant lot.Mr. McGregor stated that the mobile vendors and the produce sales are different ordinances and are two separate matters.

Councilwoman McGhaney stated that she wants to make sure that the Mobile Vendors Ordinance will not negate any work that has been done with the Produce Sale Ordinance.Mr. McGregor stated that he feels sure that the Produce Ordinance and Mobile Vendor Ordinance will not affect each other and are two totally different ordinances.Council suggested striking the word “produce” from item #4 as listed below.


Amend Article 5.c.6 Permitted Temporary Uses to add item j. Mobile Vendors as follows:

j. Mobile Vendors shall be eligible for Temporary Use under the following conditions:

  1. To operate only on private property or on designated public property that is located within the GC, AC, LC, LI-W and HI zoning districts only. The cart and all items associated with any Mobile Vending operation shall be removed from the premises during non-business hours.
  2. To operate only with the maintenance and use of a litter receptacle that is made available for the patrons’ use.  Excessive litter caused by product packaging or other associated products of the Mobile Vendor operation may result in revocation of zoning approval to operate.
  3. To operate only on property on which there is located at least one active, permitted Primary Use.  Under no circumstances shall a Mobile Vendor be issued a permit to operate on property that is uninhabited or vacant;
  4. To operate and to sell only such permitted merchandise as is listed herein.  Permitted merchandise shall be limited to reading material such as newspapers, magazines, and books; produce; and ready-to-eat items and finger foods such as hot dogs, sausages, hamburgers, tacos, burritos, baked potatoes, bagels, pastries, candy, prepackaged sandwiches, cookies, chips, biscuits, popcorn, nuts, pretzels, ice products, ice cream, milk products, frozen yogurt, hot and cold beverages containing no alcohol, flowers, and items related to permitted merchandise.  Items specifically banned from being sold by Mobile Vendors include cigarettes, cigars, and any product containing tobacco.
  5. To operate only with the appropriate licensing as required by SC-DHEC and the Sumter County Business License Department, including a background check and any other requirements for Mobile Vendor operations for Sumter County, and the State of South Carolina.  It is at the discretion of the Zoning Administrator to deny a Temporary Use permit due to a felony criminal record.
  6. Upon written permission of the property owner.
  7. Upon submittal of a picture of the mobile vending unit along with a drawing showing the proposed location for set up on the property under review.
  8. Unit shall be an approved, commercially manufactured (not homemade) commercial Mobile Food Unit as defined in Article 10. All units shall be required to meet all SC DHEC regulations and shall provide proof of inspection approval from SC DHEC.
  9. Permitted one (1) business identification sign, excluding menu boards, not exceeding six (6) square feet in area, that does not require a permit but must be affixed to the vehicle or cart.
  10. Temporary Use for each location shall be renewed annually.
  11. Only when all conditions listed have been met.  There shall be no temporary licensing of Mobile Vendors until such conditions are met.  Only duly licensed operators shall be permitted.

Amend Article 10.b.1 Definitions to add Mobile Food Unit as follows:

Section 10.b.1 Definitions:

The Chairman called for a motion on this suggestion.

ACTION:  MOTION was made by Councilman Edens, seconded by Councilman Byrd, and unanimously carried by Council to strike the word produce from item #4 in the suggested amendment. 

The Chairman then called for a motion on third reading.Councilwoman McGhaney asked that one of the citizens (Mr. Stafford) be allowed to speak.It was further stated by Vice Chairman Blanding stated that it is very unusual for a person to speak and it is not public comment.

ACTION:  MOTION was made by Councilman Byrd, seconded by Councilman Edens, and unanimously carried by Council to defer third reading on this ordinance amendment. 

Street Name Change – None

Grant Awards– None



(1)   South Carolina Forestry Commission Presentation

Mr. Mike Shealy and Mr. James Douglas, representatives from the S. C. Forestry Commission, and Representative J. David Weeks, Sumter County House of Representatives, were present on behalf of this presentation.  Mr. Douglas introduced Mr. Shealy and thanked Representative Weeks for his support of the Forestry Commission.  Then Mr. Mike Shealy presented Council with a check of $178,765.14 as a result of the harvesting of trees from Manchester State Forest located in Sumter County.  The funds are to be granted to the local school district in which the trees are harvested and sold.  Manchester State Forest is under a State required management and harvesting regulations program. 

Council accepted the check on behalf of the County and the School District.  Dr. Henrietta Green was presented on behalf of the School District.  She along with Council Members took a picture with Representative Weeks and representatives from the Forestry Commission. 

ACTION:  Received as information.    

(2)   12-­­­­776 – First Reading -- An Ordinance To Amend Ordinance No. 04-550 To Change The Appointing Organization For One Board Member Position On The Sumter  Development Board.

The Chairman of County Council introduced this matter and then asked the County Attorney to elaborate on the contents of the proposed ordinance.  The County Attorney, Johnathan Bryan, presented this proposed ordinance to Council for first reading consideration.  Mr. Bryan stated that this ordinance will change the appointing organization for one of the board member positions on this Board.  The change will allow for the Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative to have two appointees instead of one and the Chamber of Commerce to have one appointee instead of two.  Additionally, the ordinance amendment would allow a person to serve three consecutive terms instead of two consecutive terms.  After all comments, Council took action on first reading as listed below.

ACTION:  MOTION was made by Councilman Byrd, seconded by Councilman Baker, and unanimously carried by Council to grant first reading to this proposed ordinance amendment. 

WHEREAS,     Sumter County Council reorganized and renamed The Sumter Development Board in 2004 by Ordinance Number 04-550, as amended in 2005 by Ordinance Number 05-564; and

WHEREAS,     until 2006, funding for the Sumter Development Board had historically been provided primarily by the Sumter County Council and the City Council for the City of Sumter; and

WHEREAS,     Civic-minded individuals and businesses organized in 2006 under the name of Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative for the purpose of augmenting the budget and efforts of the Sumter Development Board; and

WHEREAS,     Ordinance 06-631 further amended Ordinance 04-550 and created a new board position of the Sumter Development Board to be filled by the governing body of Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative; and

WHEREAS,     to reflect the current funding sources of the Sumter Development Board budget, it is appropriate to amend again the organization of the Sumter Development Board so that two board positions of the Sumter Development Board now will be filled by the governing body of Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative; and

WHEREAS,     Sumter County Council desires to allow appointees to serve three consecutive terms; and

WHEREAS,     Ordinance 04-550, as amended, is codified in Chapter 2, Article IV, Division 5 of the Code of Ordinances for Sumter County,


1.  That Ordinance #04-550, as amended, codified in Chapter 2, Article IV, Division 5 of the Code of Ordinances for Sumter County is hereby further amended as follows:

The number of members of the Board shall remain at nine (9) but two of the members will now be appointed by the governing body of Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative and one (1) member  will be appointed by the governing body of the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce, Inc. 

The new appointment from Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative shall begin to serve immediately and shall serve the remainder of this year and two more years.  The term for this new appointment will expire June 30, 2015. 

The currently serving Board Member appointed by the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce, Inc. will continue to serve until his term expires and his successor is appointed.

The terms of the other Board Members currently serving shall remain unchanged.

Board Members may be reappointed twice but may serve no more than three terms consecutively. 

2.  That, as a consequence of the amendments, paragraph one of the ordinance, codified as Section 2-378 (a) shall read as follows:

Sec. 2-378       Sumter Development Board created; members; terms; appointments.

  1. There is hereby created a board in and for Sumter County to be known as the Sumter Development Board (hereinafter, “BOARD”), which shall be composed of nine (9) members to be appointed as follows: four (4) by the majority vote of the County Council for Sumter County, two (2) by the majority vote of the City Council for the City of Sumter, two (2) by the majority vote of the governing body of Sumter Smarter Growth Initiative and one (1)  by the Board of Directors for the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce, Inc.  The terms of office shall be for three (3) years and until their successors are appointed and qualified.  Any vacancy shall be filled in the manner of the original appointment for the unexpired portion of the term.  All appointments to membership on the Board shall be transmitted to the Clerk of the County Council who shall properly record the same on the permanent records of his office.  Board members may serve no more than three terms consecutively.  After three consecutive terms, Board members may not serve as a member of the Board for a minimum of one year.

 3.             That in all other respects Ordinance 04-550, as modified by Ordinance 05-564 and by Ordinance 06-631, remains unchanged.

4.  Repeal.  All acts or parts of acts inconsistent herewith are repealed.

5.  Effect.  This Ordinance shall take effect upon third reading of the Ordinance.

(3)   It May Be Necessary To Hold An Executive Session To Discuss A Personnel Matter, Receive A Legal Briefing, Or Discuss A Contractual Matter And Appropriate Actions May Be Required And Taken Thereafter

No executive session was held. 


(1)   12-774 –Third Reading -- An Ordinance To Abandon And Convey An Unnamed Road On Property Of The First Pentecostal Holiness Church On McCrays Mill Road.

The Chairman introduced this matter to Council for third reading approval.  The Attorney informed Council that there were no changes to this ordinance since first reading.  Council then took action on third reading. 

ACTION:  MOTION was made by Councilman Edens, seconded by Councilman Baker, and unanimously carried by Council to grant first reading to this proposed ordinance amendment.  


(1)   Fiscal, Tax, and Property Committee Meeting To Be Held On Tuesday, September 11, 2012, at 4:30 p.m. In Sumter County Administration Building, County Council’s Conference Room (Baten, Blanding, and Edens -- All Council Members Are Asked to Attend). 

The Chairman of the Committee, Chairman Eugene R. Baten, presented the following recommendations for action by Sumter County Council from the Committee meeting held at 4:30 p.m. on September 11, 2012. 

  •            Discussion And Possible Action Concerning Request From Local Industry For Use Of Rail: The Committee received a request to allow for a local industry (Kiln Direct) to be able to use the CSX Rail in the area of the industry.  The Committee approved the recommendation and directed the County Administrator to execute and deliver all documents to consummate this agreement. 

ACTION:  MOTION and second were received from the Committee and unanimously carried by Council to approve the recommendation as received. 

  •            Preliminary Year-End Financial Report FY 2012:

The preliminary year-end financial report was given as information. 

  •            Update on Bond Sale and Lease Agreement Interest Rates and Bond Ratings

The Financial Report was given as information. 

(2)  Information Only:  Forfeited Land Commission (FLC) Meeting To Be Held On Tuesday, September 11, 2012, at 5:30 p.m. Or As Soon As Practicable After Council’s Fiscal, Tax, and Property Committee Meeting Scheduled For 4:30 P.M. September 11, 2012, In Sumter County Administration Building, County Council’s Conference Room -- All Council Members Are Members Of The FLC).

The Chairman reported that the action taken by the Forfeited Land Commission does not need any action by Sumter County Council.  However, the three issues discussed during executive session were recommended to be forwarded to the County Attorney for continued negotiations.  One additional item will be forwarded to the Commission at its next meeting.  The Clerk to Council was asked to schedule the meeting and provide the appropriate paperwork to Sumter County Council members. 

(3)   Report From Council Members On Other Meetings, Trainings, And/Or Conferences

No report was given. 


  • South Carolina Institute Of Government Classes – Government Officials Annual Meeting
  • Webcast – SCAC –
  • Calendar Of Events
  • Radio Station – Councilman Byrd
  • Groundbreaking – Bethel Fire Station will be scheduled for this month.
  • Emergency Management Activity Report


The County Administrator reported on the following:

  • Landscape Ordinance – Mr. McGregor would like to set up a preliminary meeting with Council so that Planning Department will go in the directions that Council would like to go in for the Landscaping ordinance.  The Clerk is to set-up this meeting.
  • SCWork Ready – The Chairman as well as a Champion in the Community.  We will forward the name of Jay Schwedler to the group as our Champion. 
  • Bond Rating -- Moody’s and Standards And Poors Bond Rating Companies have assigned a Superior Bond rating of AA and AA2 – respectively – on Sumter County’s $6,500,000 General Obligation Bond Issue Series 2012.  It was also noted that that the reason for the rating is because of the County’s (1) strong financial position, (2) low debt burden, (3) rapid debt payoff, and (4) manageable capital needs, which are all indications of a healthy secure financial government.  The bonds were sold at 1.15% interest rate; the lowest ratings ever offered Sumter County for its long term General Obligation Bonds.  Proceeds from these bond sales will allow for the County to enhance projects that are currently underway, as well as finance various other new constructions projects and capital improvements needs throughout the county.  Sumter County continues to work hard to maximize each and every local tax dollar.  Financial accountability and stability continues to be a top priority for Sumter County government. 
  • Unaudited End of Years Financials – Ended June 30, 2011 – Revenue received $39,179,941; expenditures $38,040,081, and revenue over expenditures are $1,039,800.60 (unaudited).   

Chairman Baten and Council members thanked the County Administrator, the financial staff, and all employees who worked to keep expenditures down during the year. 


The Chairman asked if anyone wished to speak during public comment; the following person spoke. 

  • Bee Schmidt stated that she was surprised about the Forestry giving the County money and then the County giving the money to the School District.  She asked that County Council consider giving some of those funds to the hungry of the County such as the Soup, United Ministries, and other agencies that support those that are in need.
  • Robert Stafford stated that he agree with Ms. Schmidt, but he would also like to see the County look at helping the Animal Shelter since the shelter is sending out fliers asking people to assist them in taking care of the dogs. 

He then talked to Council about his concerns with the Planning Commission a it relates to Produce Sales by a farmer on an vacant lot.  Mr. Stafford said that regulations concerning produce sales in the rural area of this county are the most extensive in this State.  He also said that he has done what he can to get the laws changed for produce sale on vacant property, but the County’s Planning Commission does not want to help him.  It was further mentioned by Mr. Stafford that he cannot put any more than a 2 x 2 sign on his property, but now the mobile vendors can do more.  He asked Council for help.  (Councilwoman McGhaney stated that she has never gotten a call from anyone about this matter.)


There being no further business for Sumter County Council, and no additional comments from the public, the meeting was adjourned at 6:48 p.m. after a motion by Councilman Byrd, seconded by Councilman Baker, and unanimously carried by Council. 


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