I am happy to open this week’s message with some hearty congratulations. Officer Josh Caulder was recognized by the American Legion Post 193 as the 2016 Traffic Safety Officer of the Year, and he will be honored at the Legion’s April meeting. Josh has been with our department for five years and has been very helpful in promoting public safety and traffic control in Chapin. In addition, Chief Zeigler reported to town council that the police department had received a Certificate of Appreciation from Homes for Our Troops for their assistance with the recent home that was built for Sgt. Robert Barber in Chapin.
Our Utilities Director Andy Metts reported that his department received an Award of Excellence at the SC Environmental Operations conference for its wastewater treatment plant operations. This recognition for the second year in a row by the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control commended our Utilities staff for their ongoing excellence in protecting the environment and exceeding compliance expectations of the department through meeting our discharge limits, avoiding any permit violations and operating in a safe and productive manner. Many thanks to our entire Utilities team for their continued professional excellence and going ABOVE & BEYOND!
Thinking about the environment, Lexington County is hosting an Electronics and Scrap Metal Recycling event on Saturday, April 8 from 9 am to 1 pm. The collection will be held in the parking lot at Chapin United Methodist Church, 415 Lexington Avenue. You can bring up to eight old electronic devices, such as old computers, laptops, TVs, video game systems, printers, etc. and any scrap metal materials, including old appliances. We appreciate Lexington County and Eight Acres Recycling for offering this free event for our Chapin residents.
I received a telephone call from one of our Beaufort Street merchants who was appreciative of our Public Works staff and their efforts to clean up the Clark and Beaufort Street areas. He wanted to let me know that he and the other business owners were glad to see the shrubbery being trimmed and new mulch being put in the beds. He said he was glad to see the town looking better. I want to personally thank our Public Works employees, Anthony Andrade and Ashton Miles for their great work and giving us all another reason to be Chapin Proud of our community.
Several of our staff have been keeping abreast of the latest trends and issues in their respective areas through the attendance of continuing education workshops and conferences. Finance Director Laura Culler and Town Clerk Julie Hammond recently attended the Municipal Clerks and Treasurers Institute where some of the topics discussed included municipal accounting, audits and special election procedures. Clerk of Court Inga Whelchel attended the SC Summary Court Judges Association annual seminar where they focused on domestic violence laws and cases, active shooter protocols and e-tickets management. Zoning Administrator Chris Clauson attended the SC Chapter of the American Planning Association’s spring meeting, where they focused on historic preservation, adaptive reuse and downtown development. Communications and Economic Development Director Karen Owens participated in the Palmetto Economic Development Conference where they concentrated on best practices for local developers, the importance of marketable certified sites and a comprehensive labor study being conducted for the entire state to address underemployed workers and gaps in workforce. Part of having a skilled team that excels in operating our town is allowing them to continue their professional development through workshops and conferences like these.
Just a reminder to come out Thursday night to Town Hall for the Public Safety Community Night being hosted by Lexington County Public Safety and Chapin Police Department. We’ll have our first responders on hand with vehicles, educational materials and demonstrations from 5- 7 pm in the Town Hall parking lot. This is a great opportunity for you to learn about what services the county provides and who to contact when an emergency arises. At 7 pm, we will come inside for a presentation by each public safety department as well as a discussion about the county’s new Pro QA dispatch system. The medical director from Lexington Medical Center will talk about how they triage emergency calls to ensure the right people respond to each incident. And there will be an opportunity for questions from citizens as well.
I hope to see many of you at our Prayer Breakfast at town hall on Friday 7:30 am, featuring Dr. Akil Ross of Chapin High School as our guest speaker. And don’t forget to come out for Community Service Day on Saturday, April 1. The Volunteer Thank You lunch will be at noon at Crooked Creek Park, with our American Legion volunteers cooking hot dogs and desserts. It’s free and the food is always delicious!