Winnsboro denies Ridgeway refund
by Lucas Vance Staff Writer
WINNSBORO —At its most recent meeting, Winnsboro Town Council unanimously voted to decline Ridgeway’s $1,400 refund request related to a water purge. On Aug. 20, a pump failed at the water tank on Highway 34 across from Sun Belt. When the pump failed, Winnsboro employees had to restart it manually. However, Ridgeway was concerned about the potability of the water, so they purged 87,000 gallons.
“They did so without calling us or asking us about the situation,” Winnsboro’s Mayor Roger Gaddy said.
Because of the purge, Ridgeway incurred additional costs for extra hours worked by their employees, and the municipality wants to hold Winnsboro liable since the situation involved a water pump failure.
However according to Gaddy, the Town of Winnsboro is not liable for those costs.
“The pump failure was unforeseen and the contract specifically states unless we are liable, we will do what we can to return water service as soon as possible. However, we are not liable for any damages that occur or increased costs that are incurred by a customer,” he stated.
After discussing the legal and contractual matters in executive session on Oct. 1, council man Jack Wilkes said council “respectfully declined” Ridgeway’s request.
In other news:
During public comments, Fairfield County Chamber of Commerce president Terry Vickers withdrew a request that was sent to Town Manager Don Wood to pave parking lots on the east side of Congress Street. She withdrew the request because the pot holes were filled for this weekend’s Rock Around the Clock festival.
“I was concerned for people’s safety, but the major holes have been filled and I don’t think it poses an issue any longer for people parking during the festival,” Vickers said.
She invited all council members to the Rocking Chair Parade which begins at 7 p.m. tonight, and thanked them for making the 18th annual festival possible.
“We could not have this festival without all of your support,” Vickers noted.
Friends of Mt. Zion Institute (FOMZI) board member Brenda Miller asked council to focus on the the building’s auditorium because it is an important part of the property. She said FOMZI would offer a proposal by the next council meeting on Oct. 15.
“We think these renovations are an important project to take on,” Miller told council. “It would be positive for the town to preserve the history of the property.”
After a brief executive session, council decided to table the FOMZI discussion until their proposal was presented during the next meeting.
Land Tech requested two additional water taps to increase the total from 26 to 28. The housing development is located off of Langford Road in Blythewood between Adams Road and Trading Post Road.
Gas, Water and Sewer director Jesse Douglas told council the additional taps should not be a problem.
Councilman Clyde Sanders made a motion to approve the request, which was seconded by councilman Stan Klaus with no discussion.
Gaddy emphasized that the town receive payment for the additional taps before they were installed.
“The only thing I would say is that they (Land Tech) pay for them (water taps) before they get them,” he said.
The gratis use of the Armory by Relay for Life chairpersons Arthur Lathan and Tonya Green passed unanimously, pending the payment of a cleaning fee.
“Our committee is eager to begin our 2014 campaign,” Lathan wrote in letter to council. “We are asking that the normal rental fees for the use of the Armory be waived to help maximize the profit for the American Cancer Society.”
Relay for Life fund raising events help communities fight back against cancer. To kickoff the campaign, the steering committee has put together a fundraiser featuring University of South Carolina men’s head basketball coach Frank Martin and possibly Fairfield County’s own professional football player Tyler Thigpen. The event is scheduled for Oct. 10 and Lathan expects 250-300 people to be in attendance.
Toward the end of regular session, Sanders requested another street light be installed on Cemetery Street.
“The residents have done a lot on that street to make it better and nicer,” he noted.
Councilman Jack Wilkes noted that there has been “a lot of drug activity in the area,” and conceivably the additional light would prevent any further activity in the area.
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