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KCC to consider second reading of updated plan

Posted: November 23, 2012 5:03 p.m.
Updated: November 26, 2012 5:00 a.m.

Kershaw County Council is set to discuss second reading of an ordinance approving a five-year review of the county’s comprehensive plan during its meeting Tuesday.

During previous council meetings, County Administrator Vic Carpenter said the plan provides a “snapshot of where the county would like to be in a variety of areas, including infrastructure, facilities, programs, and services.” He explained that it “anticipates what the county will look like in five and ten years.”

County Planning and Zoning Director John Newman provided council with highlights from the plan during a work session held Nov. 8. He said the plan includes sections related to the county’s housing availability, cultural resources, transportation needs, and priority investment projects. Overall, the plan is split into seven different sections.

According to the updated plan, the county has experienced “steady and significant growth” during the last four decades. The 2010 census listed the county’s population at 61,697, a 17 percent increase from 2000. By 2030, the county is projected to have a total population of 72,800, an 8 percent growth per decade. The most significant growth has been seen in Elgin and Lugoff.

The plan also indicates that single-family detached homes remain the dominant housing type in Kershaw County, although the percentage has declined since 1970. The percentage of manufactured housing has also increased in that time, but has experienced a slight dip recently based on the 2010 census.

To address ongoing needs for affordable housing, the plan notes the 2011 creation of the Kershaw County Housing Authority.

As part of the cultural resources section, a number of community organizations and assets are listed, including: the Kershaw County School District, the South Carolina Equine Park, the Historic Camden Revolutionary War Site, the Battle of Camden site, and Lake Wateree.

The community facilities element offers a review of the county’s various services, including: water, sewer, fire, emergency medical, law enforcement, KershawHealth, the detention center, and the library.

The transportation section illustrates the need for various projects as well as outlines daily traffic volumes, operations at Woodward Field Airport, biking and pedestrian facility availability, sidewalk access, and bus services.

A number of capital projects and improvements are also listed, including:

• assessing the condition of the county’s correctional facility;

• identifying bridges that may require replacement;

• transitioning the county’s fire department from a volunteer staff to a full time, paid service supplemented by volunteers;

• upgrading the county’s sewer and waste water treatment plant to improve its capacity;

• upgrading the county courthouse;

• improving the condition of the county’s library;

• assessing the county’s recreational facilities; and

• updating the county’s solid waste and recycling centers.

In other business Tuesday, council will consider a resolution providing a fee-in-lieu of taxes (FILOT) agreement with Diversified Information Technologies (DIT).

Carpenter explained Wednesday that the resolution was a “routine” procedure and that none of the financials associated with the deal would be changed.

“It’s not a new investment,” Carpenter said. “It’s really just paperwork. It’s not a change to anything.”

Kershaw County Economic Development Director Peggy McLean reiterated Carpenter’s statement, indicating the resolution is simply “procedural” and allows for certain details to be “cleaned up.”

In September, council approved a FILOT with DIT that outlined the company would generate at least 20 full-time jobs and make an investment of approximately $5.8 million during its first five years. The agreement also calls for an 8 percent assessment ratio during a period of 10 years. The ratio would drop to 6 percent based upon an investment of at least $10 million.

DIT, a document management solutions company based in Scranton, Pa., recently took over the former SPX Filtran building, located on U.S. 601 across from the Heritage Pointe Industrial Park in Lugoff.

Council will also consider a proclamation recognizing World Aids Day.

Tuesday’s meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m. at the Kershaw County Government Center on Walnut Street in Camden and is open to the public.

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