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Elgin audit receives unqualified opinion
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The town of Elgin’s latest audit came back with an unqualified opinion, meaning auditors had no reservations in reviewing the town’s finances. A representative from the certified public accounting firm of Dooley and Company LLC presented the audit at Tuesday’s Elgin Town Council meeting.

According to the audit, capital expenses for town hall improvements and police vehicles resulted in a general fund net decrease of $148,910 from $988,009 to $839,009. 

Mayor Brad Hanley pointed out that the actual loss of operating funds totaled a little over $5,000.

“Which is not bad considering that we got dinged for that lost revenue at the end of the year because of the law that says any town cannot receive less than the previous year,” Hanley said. “While our revenue grew, Camden and Bethune did not -- so they dinged us for it. That was for about $30,000.”

Also Tuesday, council unanimously approved Ordinance 222, adopting a revised 2012 Comprehensive Plan for the town. The previous plan was developed and adopted in 2002. Comprehensive plans generally serve as a guide to the orderly development of the town and as a basis for zoning or rezoning property within cities or towns.

Elgin Police Chief Harold Brown summarized the cost of manpower during the recent Catfish Stomp. Brown noted that overtime for officers during the event was a significant expense to the police department. Brown also suggested that the community green space be supplied with water and power connections.

Several resident complaints were discussed Tuesday. They included a hazard issue concerning a cinder block pit located on private property, a camper in the backyard of a town residence and the presence of chickens on residential property.

Councilwoman Melissa Emmons then presented a brief update on the town’s website.

“We are up from last month. We had 685 total hits, 547 are new. Out of those hits, 299 were pertaining to the Catfish Stomp,” Emmons said.

Lugoff resident Sidney Butler addressed council during the public forum portion of the meeting. Butler said he has been discussing the relocation of the Amtrak Station in Camden with Lugoff residents and U.S. Rep. Mick Mulvaney, who represents South Carolina’s 5th congressional district. Butler claimed that Mulvaney’s office confirmed that the Camden station does not meet Americans with Disabilities Act standards. 

“I am trying to relocate it across the river, because that is where the growth is,” said Butler.

Butler suggested that the town write Amtrak headquarters and propose that the depot be relocated to Elgin.

In other business, a special meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, Dec. 18 at 6 p.m. to discuss plans for a community green space. Council’s next regular meeting will take place Jan. 8 at 7 p.m.