Edition: 01-16-2013
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Voter ID law in effect since January 1st

Jerry E. Halmon, Staff Reporter

At the start of each new year there are always a host of new laws that come into effect. One new law that came into effect on January 1, 2013, is that voters going to the polls in Bamberg County will be asked to show one of the following photo IDs at their polling place: S.C. Driver’s License; ID Card issued by S.C. Department of Motor Vehicles; S.C. Voter Registration Card with Photo; Federal Military ID or U.S. Passport.

If you do not currently have one of the Photo IDs listed, you can get one free of charge through the following ways: Voters can get a voter registration card with a photo from your county voter registration and elections office by simply providing your date of birth and the last four digits of your Social Security Number; By obtaining a DMV card at a local DMV office (check with DMV or scdmvonline.com for required documents).

Not having a Voter ID on Election Day however will not prohibit a voter from voting! If a voter has a “reasonable impediment” to obtaining a Photo ID, he or she may vote a “provisional ballot” after showing a non-photo voter registration card. A “reasonable impediment” is defined as any valid reason, beyond a voters control, which creates an obstacle to obtaining photo ID. Some examples include: religious objection to being photographed; disability or illness; work schedule; lack of transportation; lack of birth certificate; family responsibilities; election within short time frame of implementation of Photo ID Law (January 1, 2013) or, “any other obstacle” you find reasonable.

To vote under the “reasonable impediment” exception a voter will need to do the following: Present a current, non-photo voter registration card at the polling place, sign an affidavit stating why he or she could not obtain a photo ID and cast a provisional ballot that will be counted unless the county election commission has reason to believe your affidavit is false.

It was also noted that if a voter does not have a photo ID and does not have a reasonable impediment to obtaining one, or simply forgot to bring a photo ID to the polling place, the voter may still vote a provisional ballot. However, for his or her vote to be counted, he or she must provide one of the photo IDs to the county election commission prior to certification of the election which in Bamberg County is usually on Thursday morning following Election Day.

Patti Jeffcoat, Director of the Bamberg County Voter Registration and Elections Office said that two seminars will be held to bring county voters up to speed on the new law. The first seminar will be held on January 29th, at the J. Carl Kearse Agricultural Building from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm and another seminar will be held in February with the date and time to be announced.

Jeffcoat noted any persons, groups, churches, poll workers and political organizations interested in learning more about the new law can attend the meeting. She also noted that any new voter can come by the Voter Registration Office and register and get a photo ID made. For more information on the new Voter ID Law, voters can go to www.scvotes.org. For information on the documents needed to get a DMV ID card, visit www.scdmvonline.com.

County Council gives second reading to Capital Sales Tax bonds

Jerry E. Halmon, Staff Reporter

Bamberg County Council met on Friday morning, January 11th, in the Bamberg County Courthouse and gave second reading approval to two proposed ordinances related to the one cent Capital Sales Improvement Tax that voters approved on November 6, 2012. The first ordinance council approved provided for the issuance of bonds in one or more series; tax exempt or taxable, the proceeds of which shall be used according to Capital Projects sales and use Tax Referendum held on November 6, 2012.

The second proposed Ordinance Council approved authorized the issuance and sale of not to exceed $2,000,000 Principal amount Bamberg County, South Carolina Special Source Revenue Bonds in one or more Series; The application of the proceeds of said Bonds to defray the cost of the construction of certain infrastructure improvements in the county.

A public hearing and third reading on the two proposed ordinances will be held on Monday, January 28, 2013, at 6:30pm in the courthouse. County Administrator Joey Preston informed council members that attorney’s for the Department of Revenue (DOR) would only come to the January 28th, public hearing and third reading of the proposed ordinance, “if there are questions,” to be answered.

Preston requested that Council members have a list of questions ready in advance for the DOR officials. Also during discussions Friday morning, on anticipated revenue from the Capital Sales Tax, Preston noted that if money doesn’t come in over the seven year period as planned, then plans would have to be revamped. “It all boils down to how much money can be collected,” Preston noted.

County Council Chairperson Alzena Robinson noted during the discussion that before Council’s January 7th, meeting in which Parker Poe Attorneys Sidney Evering and Ray Jones went over details of how the bond process worked, it was not her understanding the projects had to be listed in the order they are to be completed. Councilman Trent Kinard, also noted that before he came in office it was his understanding from attending an earlier meeting that it was stated that each of the projects could be started at the same time.

Council members present at Friday morning’s meeting and voting in favor of the two proposed ordinances were council members: Joe Guess Jr., Trent Kinard, Rev. Isaiah Odom and Chairperson Alzena Robinson. Also present at the meeting were: County Administrator Joey Preston, Finance Director Thomas M. Thomas and County Treasurer Alice Johnson.

In other business, February 15th, was designated as the day council members would hold their Planning Retreat.

One fatality occurs in collision

Jerry E. Halmon, Staff Reporter

A two vehicle collision occurred on January 10th which resulted in one fatality on Voorhees Rd. According to Lance Corporal Sonny Collins of the South Carolina Highway Patrol around 4:40 pm on Voorhees Road near the town of Denmark, a 2004 Chevrolet truck, was traveling north. The second vehicle, a 1999 Buick which was traveling east on Capernaum Road, disregarded the stop sign at Voorhees Road and was struck by the other vehicle. The driver of the Buick died of trauma resulting from the accident. The drivers of both vehicles involved in the accident were wearing seatbelts. No charges are expected to be filed at this time . According to Officer Collins the crash does remain under investigation by the South Carolina Highway patrol. Units responding to the scene included: The Denmark Fire Department, Bamberg Rescue Squad, Bamberg County Sheriff’s Office and the South Carolina Highway Patrol.

AJA Varsity girls undefeated

Mike Hall, Contributing Writer

The Andrew Jackson Academy Varsity Girls basketball team remains undefeated in region play this season. On Friday the Andrew Jackson Varsity Girls improved to 9-2,2-0 on the season with a 38-22 victory over region foe Patrick Henry. Cassidy Hall led the Lady Confederates with 18 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals.

In varsity boys action Patrick Henry defeated the Confederates 53-23 dropping AJA to 1- 11,0-2 on the season. Aaron Cleland led the AJA effort with 6 points and 14 rebounds.

In JV action the Andrew Jackson JV Girls fell to 4-2,0-2 after a 33-18 loss to Patrick Henry. Caitlin McCallister led AJA with 9 points and 8 steals.

In JV Boys action Patrick Henry defeated AJA 53 to 22. AJA, 1-5,0-2 was led by Joseph Stanfield with 5 points, 4 rebounds, and 2 steals.

B-Team Boys vs. Jefferson Davis: The Andrew Jackson B-Team Boys improved to 1-2 on the season with a 31-6 win over Jefferson Davis. Bryce Hughes led AJA with 10 points.

On 1-11-13 Varsity Boys vs. St Francis: St Francis 66 AJA 51. AJA (1-12,0-3) was led by Aaron Cleland with 13 points and 12 rebounds.



Red Raider Wrestling team hosts Lugoff Quads

Jerry E. Halmon, Sports Editor

The top ranked Class 1A/2A Red Raider Wrestling team hosted the Lugoff Quad in Bamberg Thursday night with the Class 4A, 8th ranked Lugoff- Elgin Blue Demons and two other teams participating. The Red Raiders had a good showing in the match with several grapplers coming away with wins and others having a strong performance in the first match with the Class 4A Blue Demons. In the first match of the evening, Lan Hiers came away with 3-1 decision and Player Long came away with a pin in their matches respectively. RaQuan Brown was able to get a pin over his opponent and heavyweight DeAngelo Tyler came away with a 5-1 decision over his Lugoff- Elgin opponent.

B-E’s Malcolm Jones lost a grueling 13-12 double-overtime match despite being in obvious pain during his match. Junior Jeremy Davis put up a tough performance in a lost and senior Sean Paul Morais also had a strong performance in his match. Results of other matches were not available at press time.