Posted on Wednesday, January 30th, 2019 at 4:16 pm. Posted to Community.
Chapin We Care community outreach center has served Chapin and the surrounding community for over 32 years, serving an average of over 800 individuals on a monthly basis. Through generous support from Chapin area churches as well as local businesses, civic groups, schools and individuals, we are able to help meet the needs of many families in our community through food distribution, assistance with utilities, kerosene and gasoline vouchers, and vouchers to our local thrift store. We have a computer lab for our clients, a reading room for children, and offer nutrition and job training education as well. We also offer special programming including tax clinics, summer camp, Christmas outreach, Thanksgiving meals, Easter baskets, etc. Interest in receiving services, donating or volunteering at the center should be directed to 803-345-3244. We can also be reached through our website chapinwecare.org. The center operates on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:00-12:00, as well as Thursdays from 4:00-6:00 pm. We Care gratefully gladly accepts donations. In accordance with Federal civil rights law and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc) should contact the Agency (state or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact the USDA through the Federal Relay Service at 800-877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English. To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form (AD-3027) found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call 866-632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: 1. Mail – US Department of Agriculture Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights 1400 Independence Avenue SW Washington DC 20250-9410 2. Fax – 202-690-7442 3. Email – firstname.lastname@example.org Chapin We Care Center is an equal opportunity provider
Posted on Thursday, January 3rd, 2019 at 8:53 pm. Posted to Community.
Chapin Mayor David Knight, at Thursday’s Town Council meeting, presented his 2018 State of the Town report. The report follows:
A year ago when I was elected Mayor of the Town of Chapin, I could have never predicted where we would be today. When I first took office I was new to politics and there was a learning curve as I started to understand the functions of local government. I had to get to know the staff and, even though I knew all of the Council members, we had to find our footing in how we would conduct business.
One of our first ordinances was to amend our meeting schedule so that our Council meetings were back to the first Tuesday of the month. We also instituted monthly strategic work sessions with the Council and our Directors so that they are aware of major activities and initiatives.
I ran on a campaign promise to be honest, accountable and responsible. In the spirit of team-work, we took several actions this year to ensure that we were operating in an honest and transparent manner. We amended ordinances to reflect the actual conduct of our operations by separating the duties for the clerk and the treasurer. This was already being practiced, but we adopted ordinances to reflect the current job responsibilities which have greatly expanded.
We established several departments and director positions through ordinances including the Director of Public Works & Utilities and the Director of Planning & Zoning. Andy Metts continued in his capacity as Director of Public Works & Utilities, and we hired Nathan Powell as the Director of Planning & Zoning.
Halfway through the year, the position of Director of Public Affairs was created and Nicholle Burroughs was hired to fill that role. We amended the Town Council compensation ordinance to reflect actual pay schedules that had not been done in several years. In order to keep an accurate record of our ordinances and a timely update of our codes, Town Clerk Julie Hammond undertook the massive effort to get all of our codes and ordinances established in an online repository through Municode with quarterly updates. Our code is finally online.
As an elected official, I am accountable to our citizens for my actions, the actions of our Council and our employees. We established purchase limits for the Mayor, Director of Finance and the Director of Public Works & Utilities. We also revised the Utility Code and Policy to clarify the authority of the Mayor and Director of Public Works & Utilities to approve sewer extensions to unserved areas.
With the help of our Director of Finance, Laura Culler, we approved the 2019 budget in September, working on it in a work session so that the public had access to the decision-making process. We established surcharge rates for high strength wastewater discharge, aligned water rates in conjunction with the City of Columbia, amended utility extension policy to areas not served and aligned the zoning ordinance with the comprehensive plan as it pertains to residential uses.
Lastly, we adopted new Mid-Carolina Electric Cooperative and South Carolina Electric and Gas long term franchise agreements for electric and gas service.
I could not do my job as Mayor properly without a highly capable and diligent staff. It has been a great honor to work with the employees of Town Hall. We have established a highly qualified, extremely knowledgeable team of experts from administration to utilities.
Through this team we have led several efforts that will have a major impact on our community such as the new state of the art Waste Water Treatment Plant. Construction began on the facility to meet increasingly strict SCDHEC water quality standards. Under the direction of Andy Metts and his team, construction has been within budget and on schedule.
As we enter 2019, we will continue to focus on a major project which, when completed, will forever change the face of Chapin. There is a master plan which proposed to widen I-26 to six lanes from exit 101 to Exit 85. This will include a new multilane bridge at our exit and will create a new four-lane boulevard from Columbia Avenue to Amicks Ferry Road. We are communicating with project managers to pursue enhanced lighting, traffic signals, landscaping, pedestrian sidewalks and bike lanes while exploring ways to finance such improvements.
I was elected by the citizens of Chapin to act in the best interest of our Town. Part of that responsibility is to establish a dialogue and develop opportunities to engage with the public in meaningful ways. With the help and guidance of our Public Affairs Director Nicholle Burroughs, we have formed the Community Engagement Council. This will be an opportunity for our community citizens to be involved in the decision making process by creating solutions for current and future development in Chapin.
We want to keep our beloved Town safe. An important aspect of maintaining the high quality of life we have in Chapin is a staff of highly trained and skilled police offices. Under the leadership of Chief Zeigler, a lifelong resident, our Police Department has worked hard to develop positive community interactions over the past year. We are proud of the work they are doing to protect our Town, in particular to reduce the problem of driving while under the influence. SC ranks second in the country in DUI-related fatalities, as reported by The State. We are doing our part to hold violators responsible for their actions and to protect our citizens from harm.
To address the inevitable civil legal issues, we have retained the service of Lisa Lee Smith, an experienced Chapin attorney. Criminal matters are now handled by our own qualified police officers under the direction of Chief Zeigler,except for jury trials and other complex matters requiring the services of a part-time prosecutor. Our Clerk of Court Inga Whelchel is very proficient in managing the criminal court docket for efficient administration by Judge Reinhart.
In 2019, we will build on our relationships with the business community, we will work on developing a walkable Town Center, improve our current comprehensive plan, evaluate potential opportunities for annexation, and update data for the 2020 census. These areas are key to developing a thriving Town.
It has been an absolute pleasure to serve this past year and I look forward to the next three years. Thank you to our community members for taking an active role in our government and providing me with this opportunity. Finally to our Council members and staff, thank you for all that you do for our Town. I appreciate all your support and input. I couldn’t do my job without you.
My platform for the 2017 election was “Restore Democracy to Chapin” and together we have done that.
Thank You. Mayor David Knight