Cottageville gets new drug dog, discusses renting park facilities

by | March 15, 2019 5:00 am

Last Updated: March 13, 2019 at 9:22 am

Several new topics were raised at Cottageville Town Council’s regular meeting on Feb. 25.
 New hire: Ruby, a Belgian Malinois, was introduced by Chief Jeffrey Cook. Tautly muscled and high-strung, Ruby is a passive-alert drug detection dog; she will sit or lift a paw when she detects drugs. In the two weeks since her hire, Ruby has made five drug busts with handler Lt. Frankie Thompson. She replaces Tigger, a Dutch shepherd that became the department’s first drug dog in July 2018. Tigger “didn’t work out,” Cook said, without elaboration.
• New discussions of lights and rental fees for the new town park at Salley Ackerman Drive were held. The park, frequented by families, teens and fitness buffs, is on the site of the former Cottageville High School gym, which burned to the ground in February 2018. Amenities include a cement walking/jogging trail, stationary fitness equipment, a playground, basketball courts and a restroom pavilion, with a gateway and columns made of brick salvaged from the former gym. Mayor Tim Grimsley told council that South Carolina Electric & Gas estimated a fee of $25,000 to install decorative lights, plus $400 per month for electricity. Grimsley indicated council will not pursue that opportunity.
• Council also discussed renting the covered restroom pavilion for birthday parties, reunions and other events. While nothing was approved, officials debated charging a $100 refundable deposit and $25 per hour per event. The public restrooms, intended to be accessible 24/7, will now be opened and closed each morning and evening by police. The unattended restrooms “were trashed,” Grimsley said. “We have to lock them.”
• Cook also showed council the latest in edible cannabis — professionally wrapped and labeled treats resembling Rice Krispies and Fruity Pebbles bars. While the THC-infused treats are legal in 10 states where recreational marijuana use is allowed — including Colorado, Oregon, Nevada and Washington — they are illegal in South Carolina under the state’s simple possession law. State residents still buy them, but Cook said his primary concern is that children would eat the edibles. “Regardless of what you do in private, I don’t want kids getting access to these drugs,” he said. “They think it’s candy.”

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