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Elgin Town Council passes second reading of budget

Posted: June 20, 2016 5:46 p.m.
Updated: June 21, 2016 1:00 a.m.

Elgin Town Council passed the second reading of its 2016-2017 budget during its June meeting. 

During discussion of the budget, Councilwoman Dana Sloan brought up three budget items she suggested council look at -- technology, bank charges and salaries. 

“Some of our actual (figures) have come in instead of projective,” Sloan said, explaining she didn’t want council to approve a budget which may significantly overestimate actual costs.

Sloan asked for clarification about why the salary budget increased from $48,000 to $51,000. In response, council learned the increase accounts for anticipated salaries needed for “extra assistance.” After further discussion, council decided to decrease the figure to $50,000. Council ultimately approved budget amendments to have bank charges changed to $2,200; technology to $750; and salaries to the agreed-upon $50,000.

Elgin Mayor Melissa Emmons asked if council wanted to consider including finance software in the budget. 

“I think we figured with the proposal (last year) that we are looking at a $16,000 initial cost. If it is something council would want to consider, it would be nice to include it in the current budget,” Emmons said.

Councilman Brad Hanley asked Town Clerk Melony Hudson-Martin about the program and which modules the program would offer. Hudson-Martin said it would have modules for accounts receivable, bank reconciliation, business licenses, payroll, receipts and accounts payable.

“I’ve seen the list of all of the towns on it, there are a lot of them and they’ve been using it for awhile,” Hanley said. 

Councilman Edward Smith, Hanley and Emmons said they thought the program would be a good investment. 

Sloan said while she saw benefits to the program, she also wanted council to consider other items the money could go towards.

“I definitely think there are some benefits to this, but I think $16,000 is a whole lot of money to benefit one office area when we have a town’s worth of people,” Sloan said. “Sixteen thousand dollars could go towards the track at the park or towards a salary if we wanted to get a maintenance person to help around town. I know it will ultimately pay for itself, but it’s not how I would spend $16,000 when we have other things.”

Council decided to hold a workshop to further discuss the issue.  

Also during the council meeting, Hanley said he was asked by former Elgin Mayor Pete James to inform council of buzzards gathering around a local restaurant late in the evening.

“He’s already approached me about that and he wanted (the owner’s) number,” Hudson-Martin said. “I gave it to him and he would call him and let him know. We’ve been watching it; Chief Brown has pointed it out to us … (but) a formal complaint was not filled out.”

During council briefings, Emmons informed council of a project for the Elgin branch of the Kershaw County Library set to take place in late July.

“We are teaming up with Habitat for Humanity to have a community build day,” the mayor said. “We met a couple of weeks ago and they have scheduled the cleanup day for the Elgin library for July 30 from 8 to 11 a.m. They will bring in volunteers. Bethune is scheduled for August 6 and we will assist one another. I think this will be a great project,” Emmons said.

During new business, City of Camden Planner Shawn Putnam provided an update about the Kershaw County Greenway plan. Suggestions for the Elgin area included widening roads to include a bike lane.


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