City Council approves new insurance carrier | News | The Press and Standard

by | April 13, 2018 5:00 pm

Last Updated: April 11, 2018 at 11:17 am

Members of Walterboro City Council approved first reading of an ordinance to change the city’s insurance carrier to the S.C. Municipal Insurance Risk Fund at the April 3 meeting. The city has been insured by the S.C. Insurance Reserve for the past seven years.
Heather Ricard, SCMIRF director of risk management services, and Leigh Stoner, SCMIRF underwriting manager, spoke to council about the program. SCMIRF will charge the city $234,053 per year for insurance services including general liabilities, automobile, property/equipment, excess liability, risk control services, employee dishonesty and public official bonds. IRF’s bid was $242,488.
They noted that the city had a 20% surcharge added for “loss experience over the last five years, but that percentage could be reduced if the city addressed and corrected certain issues. Councilman Bobby Bonds proposed the city wait to adopt the new carrier until after this prospect was investigated, noting the city had until July 1 to fix problems, make a decision and hopefully save money. Councilman Carl Brown agreed, and both voted against the ordinance.
In other business:
• The city approved two resolutions giving notice to SCE&G and Coastal Electric Cooperative of the city’s intent to terminate their franchise agreements. The resolutions are the first step in negotiating new agreements with the two companies for permission to use the city’s rights-of-way for running electrical infrastructure.
• Gave second reading and adopted an ordinance amending the city’s unified development ordinance to require new businesses to have clear glass first floor storefront windows. Clear glass is defined as “either true clear glass or Low-E Glass with maximum visible light transmittance (VLT), unencumbered by blinds, curtains or other window-blocking treatments.”
• Approved the first reading of an ordinance to established a special property tax program for historic commercial properties.
• Discussed and approved priority usage for Community Development Block Grants as follows:
1) Public infrastructure and facilities including improvements to the wastewater treatment plant, upgrading water and sewer lines as needed and other projects as identified.
2) Community enrichment projects including the I-95 Loop Project, adaptive reuse of existing structures, demolition of properties deemed attractive nuisances and other projects as identified.
3) Multiple neighborhood improvement projects including North Lemacks Street and other neighborhoods as identified.
4) Special projects as identified.
5) Economic development projects as identified.
• Council voted to accept a bid from Palmetto Sitework Services of Orangeburg for the North Lemacks Street Project. Palmetto Sitework’s total bid was $300,820 with IPW Construction Group LLC of Charleston coming in second at $346,593.
The work will include demolition of existing asphalt pavement and installation of grate inlet aprons, grass seeding and 18 crape myrtle trees; removing the existing asphalt roadway, installation of overlay paving and paint striping; and installing two entry gateway signs at the intersections of North Lemacks and Sweat streets and North Lemacks and Colleton Loop.
The project must be approved by the S.C. Dept. of Commerce before work can begin.
Work on the planned park and trail was put on hold until additional funding can be secured.
• Approved street closures for the annual Cubmobile Race on April 28 from 6-11 a.m. on Forest Hills Road; a 5K Color Run fundraiser for USC Salkehatchie’s women’s volleyball team on May 19 from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. starting on Strickland Street in front of Salk; the first Farm Fresh Meal on Main scheduled May 24 on East Washington Street from Walter to Lucas streets, sponsored by the Colleton Farmers Market and local downtown restaurants; the annual Memorial Day Ceremony on May 28 at the waterfall plaza on Washington Street; and the Carolina Cycling Association Regional Criterium Championship on Aug. 11.
City Manager Jeff Molinari expressed his appreciation to Bobby and Billy Syfrett who repaired the gates at the DeTreville Street entrance to the Walterboro Wildlife Sanctuary at no cost. The gates were damaged in a recent vandalism.
He also noted the appointment of Hank Amundson to the city’s Civil Rights Committee, joining Melissa O’Quinn and Darren Sisk. The committee is required as the city participates in the Federal Community Block Grant Program.
Council then went into executive session to discuss the provision of water and sewer services encouraging the location or expansion of industries and/or other businesses served by the city; potential purchase of property; and personnel matters including appointment of an associate municipal judge and city manager evaluation; and legal advice on city trademarks.
Charles Horton was appointed associate municipal judge. No action was taken on other items.

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