Manning receives copy of award during January meeting of the City Council

by | February 6, 2019 7:30 am

Last Updated: February 3, 2019 at 4:58 pm

Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments Executive Director Chris McKinney presents Mayor Julia Nelson with a copy of an award they received from the National Association of Development Organizations.

City of Manning Finance Director Mary Prince offered a financial report to start the Manning City Council Meeting in January. At 50 percent through the fiscal year, all numbers are on schedule to meet expected annual budgets.

Following her report, Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments (RCOG) Executive Director Chris McKinney informed the Council the RCOG had received an award from the National Association of Development Organizations with regard to Manning and how the City moved forward with their comprehensive plan.

“Working with Mr. Tanner and his staff, we were able to bring creativity to the plate and create a living document the can be used on a daily basis to help the City of Manning grow and thrive as a community,” said McKinney.

McKinney brought a copy of the award to give to the City.

“This is a very prestigious award,” said Manning Mayor Julia Nelson. “We are very happy to be part of the Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments.”

Jim Manning, a representative of the Orton Family Foundation Community Heart and Soul gave a brief presentation about their program, which seeks to assist communities in highlighting their special attributes.

“Manning, like all small towns, is not just a place. It’s home,” said Manning. “Heart and Soul is a catalyst for positive change in small towns and cities by actively seeking collective wisdom from all residents, including those voices that are often missing. The Community Heart and Soul brings people together and builds stronger, healthier and economically vibrant communities.”

Manning went on to explain the four-stage plan, which takes roughly two years to complete. Stage one would lay the groundwork by getting organized, spreading the word and creating a work plan. Stage two, the longest stage, would explore the community by gathering and sharing stories and identifying what matters most. Stage three would develop options, make choices and formalize decisions. The final stage would mobilize resources to cultivate the heart and soul of the community.

Manning asked for no decisions at this time, as this was simply an informational introduction, requested by City Administrator Scott Tanner and Nelson.

The Council then made a proclamation for Optimist Day, following the example of Optimist Club International, who celebrates Optimist Day on the first Thursday of February each year.

“Whereas volunteers working with young people who are our joy for today and our hope for tomorrow are exuberant representatives for the potential to be reached and dreams to come true. They are also unbounded in their enthusiasm to use their own talents and skills and hard work to make a difference in others’ lives,” read Nelson from the proclamation. “Therefore be it resolved that I, Julia Nelson, Mayor of the City of Manning in South Carolina, issue this proclamation to declare the first Thursday of every February as Optimist Day in the City of Manning in South Carolina. May this day instill pride in our city’s Optimists for all their accomplishments and the impact they have to truly make a difference in our lives.”

Nelson next discussed the Federal workers at the Federal prison in Williamsburg County. Along with Haven of Rest and other organizations, the City is exploring ways to assist these employees during the Federal shutdown.

The “Let’s Move Manning” activity on January 5 was a success, and another “Let’s Move” activity will take place on February 16.

The Chamber retreat was also a success. Nelson stated it was very informative and there was great fellowship.

Nelson also acknowledged Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday and the Unity Prayer event. She thanked those involved with hosting the event.

Tanner mentioned the shutdown, stating it hadn’t had a visible effect on the community yet, but it could cause issues with USDA loans for ongoing construction projects.

Tanner stated he met with the Department of Commerce (DoC) last week on the Dixon Durant demolition project to discuss what needed to be done procedurally to ensure the buildings are demolished legally. The project is moving forward through an environmental review. However, it will likely be late summer or early fall before the City can bid the project.

While the DoC representative was available, they discussed possible infrastructure projects for the future.

Tanner had hoped to have a recommendation on the street sweeper. However, they are waiting on pricing from another company for one of the sweepers, so the recommendation has been delayed.

The pursuit of a public access TV station has run into a few roadblocks. They’re working now toward proper insurance in order to move forward.

There have been issues with part of the phase II upgrade on the water treatment plant. Three brand new pumps have burned out in the last few months. They are in contact with the manufacturer and are in discussions with regard to warranty issues.

Carrie Trebil, Director of Tourism and City Development, spoke briefly about the wayfinding project. The two top companies who entered bids for the project have a wide variance in cost. However, the more expensive company is committing to perform all requested tasks and provide all requested services and materials. The lesser expensive company left gaps in the requested tasks, services and materials, which will leave the City responsible for spending more money and taking a longer path toward completing the wayfinding project.

The Council will discuss the project again after consideration and may send the project out for bid again.

The Council approved Gene Benfield to the Tree Board for a term expiring November 30, 2019. The Board still needs two more members for the board, as one of the existing board members has passed away.

The Council authorized Interim Police Chief Keith Grice to enter into an agreements of Mutual Aid between the City of Manning Police Department and the City of Myrtle Beach Police Department and the City of Lake City Police Department. These are agreements which are renewed annually with approval of the Council.

During the last retreat, it was discussed that the City needs to make repairs to the City Parks. Tanner met with two vendors with regard to purchasing new equipment as well as repairing old equipment for Manning’s parks. The Council approved an expenditure of not more than $25,000 toward the repair and replacement of equipment at the City’s parks.

The City approved transfer of money from the Police Capital Expenditures, Mobile Radios to Police Vehicle Insurance Liability and to Police Insurance Tort to help cover the increases in insurance costs for the Police Department. There is no need to purchase mobile radios during the fiscal year, according to Grice, although the shifted monies did not leave the Police Capital Expenditures, Mobile Radios fund empty.

The Council then moved into executive session for a discussion of negotiations incident to proposed contractual arrangements and proposed sale or purchase of property, the receipt of legal advice or other matters covered by attorney-client privilege (S.C. Code 30-4-70(a)(2)). Following the executive session, no actions were taken, nor was it discussed in open session, and the meeting adjourned.

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