April 2016 Council Highlights

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Posted by Joseph T. McElveen, Jr. Wednesday, April 20, 2016 12:44:00 PM Categories: budget Council employment fire department Parks Penny for Progress real estate roads
  • Council is working on the 2016-17 fiscal year budget. As it currently stands the proposed budget is around 60 million. Council will be hosting some upcoming budget meetings to trim that number down even more. The budget must be finalized by June and there will a public hearing for comments and suggestions from City of Sumter residents. Residents are encouraged to attend any City Council meeting to give feedback or requests.

 

  • Council approved an ordinance to amend and restate standards and policies for all new development within the City. The ordinance recognizes that development is positive, but it also takes into account the best interests of our residents and allows for continued, orderly development within the City.

 

OTHER NEWS & ANNOUNCEMENTS:

 

  • The City of Sumter is accepting applications for its Summer Youth Employment Programs through May 6. Students ages 14-15 will work in city government and students age 16 through high school will work in the Co-Op Program for local businesses. Students must live in the city limits and meet income requirements set by HUD. Students should see their school guidance counselors for applications and income guidelines or pick up an application 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday-Friday, from the Community Development Office at the Liberty Center, 12 W. Liberty St., Suite H.

 

  • April is Fair Housing Month and the City recognizes this month as the 25th anniversary of the Home Investment Partnership (HOME) Program. We desire that all our citizens be offered the opportunity to attain a decent, safe and sanitary living environment and rejects discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, religion, ancestral status and disability. For more information on housing programs contact our Community Development office at 803-774-1649.

 

  • South Carolina has adopted the 2015 International Residential and Business Building Codes, which are updated every three years. Sumter’s building codes will reflect these changes and will be applied as of July 1, 2016. The Building Office will be hosting educational training on the new laws starting in May. Contractors should contact the building department at 803-774-1600 for more info and to signup for one of these classes.

 

  • Upcoming City projects:
    • We are extending the water line along Loring Mill Road, this will tie two waterlines together, thus giving the city more redundancy and creating better flow in our lines.
    • Mallard Drive storm drain replacement
    • Bultman Drive Storm drain replacement
    • Update on community capital projects (Penny for Progress projects):
      • A new E911 Radio project; the purchasing and programming of more than 900 radios for Law Enforcement, Fire, and EMS services. In conjunction with this project will be the installation of two new radio towers to improve the range and coverage for emergency radio service in the entire County. 
      • Groundbreaking of the new Police and Fire Department Headquarters, to be located off N. Lafayette will be held later this year.
      • The Southern Gateway project is underway. An intersection improvement project located at Lafayette Drive and Manning Avenue. This is the next step in the Manning Avenue/Main Street streetscape project, which dissects the center of the City. Examples of this project can also be seen in the completion of Main Street in the Downtown area, including buried utility lines, better sidewalks and crosswalks and overall accessibility.

For a full list of the Penny for Progress projects, visit www.pennyforprogress.com.

 

  • Current City Street Resurfacing Projects:

 

  • Archdale Drive
  • Commander Court
  • Covington Street
  • Gable Street
  • W. Glouchester Court
  • Hannah Court
  • Hasel Street
  • Hermitage Drive
  • Hospital Circle
  • Hoyt Heights
  • L Street
  • Mary Street
  • St. Augustine Drive
  • Stonehedge Court
  • Wesley Hall Court
  • Yeadon Street

 

  • Swan Lake Iris Gardens, in partnership with USC Sumter, have developed two new nature guides. The first is a field guide on the birds of Swan Lake. While the swans are our focus, this publication focuses on the “other” more common and obvious native birds that visit the lake each year. The second is a field guide to the numerous dragonfly species at the lake, which are important factors in controlling the insect population, including mosquitos.

 

  • The Swan Lake Visitors Center will be opening a temporary museum, May 1-31, featuring 75 years of Shaw Air Force Base, entitled “Soaring through the Decades”. The display includes many stories, uniforms as well as features and memorabilia from the Sumter Military Museum’s collection as well as many other contributions that represent Shaw presence in Sumter, since 1941.

 

  • City of Sumter has been improved to a Class 1 Fire Protection community. The City of Sumter is one of only 178 Fire Departments to hold this classification in the United States. This classification will go into effect June 1, 2016 and will assist our entire community and more specifically the business and industry in achieving the lowest insurance premiums available the market. Important to note that only 50 percent of our score is attributed to the Fire department having access to the correct tools, training and proper equipment, 40 percent of our score is attributed to our public services department in having an adequate and accessible water supply. The remainder of our score came through our risk reductions programs, community education programs and codes enforcement.