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Denmark retains ownership of new library Print E-mail

Denmark City Council members were informed that they will retain ownership of the projected new Denmark Branch Library of the Aiken Bamberg Barnwell Edgefield (ABBE) System, a move they did not plan for . Denmark City Administrator Heyward Robinson reported to council at their April 19, meeting that the city in attempting a land transfer of the city owned property located next to the fire department to the (ABBE), which was the site of a groundbreaking ceremony on March 15, that the (ABBE) “doesn’t want to own any real property”.

“They want to let the land stay in the name of the City of Denmark,” Robinson said, adding the (ABBE) wants to continue receiving funding from the county and maintenance of the new building, including utilities from the City of Denmark.

Under the present arrangement the City of Denmark pays the light bill and maintenance on the Denmark Library that is housed in the Walter E. Brooker Center.

“The City of Denmark will have the responsibility of maintaining the library which will be housed in a new facility,” Mayor Gerald Wright said. “The regional library system will have the operation of the library. The City of Denmark will own the land and the new library, which is not the way it was anticipated to be,” Wright said.

Councilwoman Hope Long-Weldon wanted to know when would construction of the new library begin. She was informed that the library board was in the process of working with Rep. Bakari Sellers to acquire more funding for the completion of the library.

In other business:

• Council members heard comments from Vic Whetstone about the amount of trash in the town with the large number of people coming in town to the recent Dogwood Festival, Easter Holiday and Garden Tour of Homes. “The trash is all over town; we’re a mess, let’s clean it up, sounds like a lack of proper management,” Whetstone said. Adding, “could we find two or three people to pick up trash.” Mayor Wright stated after the public comment session, “We will be looking at ordinances we have in place, we’re going to find a way to assist you with the problems we have, I hear you.”

• Fire Chief Charles Breland reported that the department answered 17 fire calls last month and his averaging seven firefighters per call. The department has a total of 30 members. He stated that seven members was good considering the large amount of false alarms the department gets. “Things overall are going pretty well,” Chief Breland said.

• Police Chief Leroy Grimes reported that the DPD created 86 case files last month. The Police Chief reported that three officers resigned and with the hiring of one new officer the department was still two officers short. Chief Grimes stated that the department has started the recruitment process for hiring new officers and he noted that it was hard for the city to compete against larger state agencies in retaining trained officers.

• Council member approved the purchase of a new Chevrolet Lumina police car under state contract bid a $19,230 which it was noted was $6,000 less the regular price for the vehicle. Council member approved the sale of two Crown Victoria with over 200,000 miles each on e-bay or auction.

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