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FEMA to fund Civic Center Print E-mail

Mayor McCollum and Clerk Watson explained at the December 14th city council meeting that the process to receive funds for the Civic Center upgrades has become complicated by the fact that it will be received through FEMA, which affects the way the money may be spent. The specific regulations will make it necessary to utilize the allotted money in other locations in Bamberg County in addition to the Civic Center in order to receive the full amount.

Bamberg City Councilperson Teresa Hannibal announced that she recently graduated from the Diversity Leaders Initiative program at the Richard W. Riley Institute, a course recommended by the Mayor’s Institute to help those in leadership roles to work effectively in communities with diverse populations.

Hannibal serves as Fire Commissioner and City Councilperson, and feels this training offered very useful ideas and training for working in a diverse community setting.

Craig Walker addressed Council to request additional funding for the youth basketball program, resulting in the approval of a $2,000 donation from the Community Promotion budget, which completes the original request totaling $4,000 for the program. “Our kids are having positive contact with coaches and volunteers…for at least 18 hours a week they are in a positive environment,” stated Walker, who coaches and organizes the program.

Chamber of Commerce Commissioner Bo Griffin reported that the Chamber’s Tour of Homes and M.A.M.A. S. shelter was a success, with half of the proceeds benefiting the shelter. Councilperson Nancy Foster encouraged the public to consider adopting a pet from the shelter for Christmas, a gift that would give something wonderful to the animal and the new owner.

In other business:

Insurance Commissioner Janeth Walker reported that the transition to new insurance plans for City employees was progressing smoothly.

Fire Chief Timmie Taylor reported that a Forestry grant has been received to purchase needed equipment like fire flaps, rakes, shovels and the like.

Public Buildings and Parks Commissioner Nancy Foster recommended the replacement of a sign in the downtown area, and suggested that the City establish an official website to offer advertising for local businesses and information for visitors.

First Reading of Ordinance 09-7 passed unanimously, specifying areas for solicitation of funds and number of permits per year. The ordinance will need to pass a second reading to be in effect.

Council voted to proceed with the writing of an ordinance that would allow the City to accept a land donation from U.S. Group. The property is located on Elm Street, the site of an old liquor store approximately ½ to ¾ of an acre. According to Clerk Watson an ordinance must be written to proceed with the transfer of property.

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