May 2018 Council Highlights


  • Council held six public hearings last night, to receive public comments on the following: 
    • Our community development entitlement funds reporton how the City utilized $291,838, which included:
      • YMCA provided various services for 15 LMI youth 
      • Employed 68 youth with summer jobs
      • United Ministries 12 housing repairs
      • New construction of one (1) affordable house
      • Housing repairs on eight (8) LMI occupants
      • Historic preservation for one (1) business façade
      • Demolition of three (3) structures
      • Sewer improvements for two (2) LMI homeowners
    • The city’s proposed 2018-19 fiscal year budget, which is looking to be about 2 percent greater than last year but the change does not require any tax increase to accomplish. Staff and council will continue to work on the budget numbers to bring a full balanced budget to our citizens by July
    • Rezoningrequests:
      • Approved:
        • 1501 Camden Highway, annexation and rezoning request, from agriculture to general commercial, to allow for better marketing of the undeveloped portion of the lot and bring the property into compliance of a supreme court ruling on planned developments in general.
        • 2810-2850 Broad Street, from planned development to general commercial, with a plan of mixed uses including a gas station/convenience store, professional offices and residential apartments.
      • Denied:
        • 200/202 West Williams Street, from residential R-6 to general residential, which allows for a mobile home to be placed on the lot.
    • Amendments to a planned development and site plan request for a mini-warehouse storage unit located at 430 Constitution Drive. This amendment to planned development would permit a development site that exceeds the 4-acre maximum size limitation. Currently the site plans for this project call for an 80,400 square foot mini-storage unit along with an 800 square foot office space.


  • This month Council approved a lease-purchase agreement, totaling over 1.4 million, so that the city can replace aging equipment, including a street sweeper, fire (pumper) truck, front loader garbage truck, recycling truck, trash trailers and a rear load garbage truck.




  • Litter continues to be an issue around Sumter. The Mayor, along with County Council Chairman have written a letter to the Secretary of Transportation at the state DOT office to ask for assistance in additional enforcement and cleanup efforts. Not long ago, an industrial prospect planned to come to Sumter to evaluate the community and meet with local representatives, shortly before the meeting the prospect cancelled; the reason was litter. Businesses want to invest in our community and will do so, if they see that we all take pride in it. We continue to ask our citizens and businesses to be diligent and dispose of all trash in appropriate waste containers and report those you see illegally dumping.


  • The Downtown Markethas begun again, held every Saturday at Centennial Rotary Plaza, at the corner of Liberty and Main Streets, 8:30-12:30. Fresh produce, grilled ribs, chicken and more, handmade jewelry, bath scrubs, gluten free baked goods, personalized gift items, and shaved ice.


  • TheCityAquatics Center will open Saturday, May 26. The Aquatics Center is located 1115 S. Lafayette Drive. Admission is $2 for youth and $3 for adults, family passes and military discount are available as well as many swim classes and programs throughout the summer. For more information, call 803-774-3998 or visit 


  • The City’s five (5)spray parks will open on Saturday, May 26. The five locations for our spray parks are Crosswell Park, North HOPE Park, South Sumter Park, Birnie HOPE Park and Palmetto Park. Admission is free all summer long, so bring the whole family. For more info, visit


  • The annual Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Legacy Festivalwill be held in Mayesville this weekend, with a parade on Saturday and a football clinic, sponsored by NFL superstar Michael Vick and friends on Friday, May 18. It’s going to be a fun-filled and educational weekend with workshops, all day rides, games, crafts, activities, music and food. The festival is designed to honor the legacy of famed educator, Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, who was born and raised in Sumter County. In addition to founding a school that bears her name, Dr. Bethune held leadership positions in a number of organizations, including the NAACP, National Youth Administration, the Urban League, and the Women’s Army Corps. She became an advisor to Presidents, including Franklin Roosevelt and Harry S. Truman. As president of the National Council of Negro Women, she attended the founding conference of the United Nations. For more information, visit


  • The Taste of Sumter kicks off the annual Iris Festivalon Thursday, May 24 at 6 PM. The longest consecutive festival in South Carolina, this year the Iris Festival is celebrating 78 years. All your family favorites will return, and a new Sportsmen’s area has been added along with Freedom Field to help commemorate Memorial Day. Local art, crafts, food, car shows, music and plenty of activities for youth of all ages. The Shriner’s Day Parade returns this year on Saturday, May 26 at 10 AM, starting at the Civic Center and ending at USC Sumter. Admission to The Taste is $5, which helps to support the festival each year and admission to the festival Friday-Sunday is free. Ample parking available at the end of Garden Street and at the Sumter County Civic Center, with Santee-Wateree RTA shuttle busses running all day Saturday and Sunday between gates and parking. For more information, visit


  • Downtown Fourth Fridaysbegins on May 25 at 6:30. Every fourth Friday, through September, a live concert will be held on Main street in Downtown Sumter and admission is free. Bring your lawn chairs, but no coolers allowed. Food and beverages available for purchase. For more information, visit


  • Grand Opening Weekend of Temple Sinai Jewish History Centeris Saturday, June 2. Official exhibit open to the public the morning of June 2 from 10-11:30 AM. Followed with a 1-5 PM afternoon of special events in the sanctuary, including Mary Burkett, Beloved Children of the Holocaust as well as a lecture and panel discussion.


  • The Sumter Opera House Summer Cinema Seriesis back with an all-new lineup of movies sure to please! We have show times at 10am, 1pm and 7pm (unless otherwise noted) and admission is just $1. We will also have concessions available for purchase. For more information, visit Movie schedule is:
    • June 7 – Ferdinand 
    • June 14 – Boss Baby (no 1 pm showing)
    • June 21 – Kung Fu Panda 3
    • June 28 – The Emoji Movie
    • July 5 – The Book of Life
    • July 12 – Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory
    • July 19 – Lego Ninjago Movie
    • July 26 – Paddington 2
    • August 2 – Cars 3
    • August 9 – Wonder


City Council meetingsare held on the first and third Tuesdays each month, at 5:30 PM in the Council Chambers on the 4thfloor of the Opera House. City residents are encouraged to attend and public comments are welcome. Council announced their 2018 schedule this month, which will be online soon. Our next meetings will be June 5 and 19, 2018.


For more information on these events and more, visit our online calendar of events at