The District Three Informer - April 2017 (Photos inserted by Calhoun Ledger)
Friends and Neighbors,
On April 10, 2017 we will hold our regular meeting of the Calhoun County Council. At that meeting, we will discuss several items that will be of special interest to our community. Below I will summarize these issues and provide my position on each of them.
Proposal for Calhoun County to Assume Control of the Calhoun Country Club (Golf Course)
Here is the specific text of the proposal/resolution:
Resolution 6-2017 Authorizing the County Administrator to Negotiate the Terms of a Lease and Option to Purchase Certain Real Property and Improvements Constituting the Golf Course Presently Owned by Calhoun Country Club on Behalf of Calhoun County.
The Calhoun County Country Club is a private organization that has come under financial distress over the last several years. This proposal will authorize our county administration to work out a lease and option to purchase arrangement with this club that will result in the county taking control of and running the golf course. The specific details of this plan and the associated structural and funding mechanisms to execute it will be explained during the Monday council meeting. These structural and funding mechanisms that have been proposed by our administration staff are sound and properly conceived. However, it is my view that the expenditure of general funds for this purpose while leaving other more critical items unfunded or funded through millage increases to be unacceptable. Additionally, the club is currently operating at a significant loss and estimates to upgrade the course to restore it to a condition that will give it a chance for solvency will cost several hundred thousand dollars. These dollars will come from our general fund and will crowd out expending these same general funds on more pressing needs throughout the county. Finally, the principle of shifting the financial burden of this club to all county taxpayers, many of whom are financially strapped and will never enjoy the benefits of this course, is very troubling to me. Therefore, I plan to vote against Resolution 6-2017.
Update on Proposed Culclasure Mine on Horsefeathers Road
SC DHEC has received a renewed application for mining operations on the Culclasure Farm property on Horsefeathers Road. During the Monday night council meeting, we will get an updated status on this application and the steps that will be forthcoming during the process. Once DHEC has answers to all its questions, they will set a public hearing date approximately 30 days later. Our best estimate is that this public hearing date will be sometime close to the June 2017 timeframe. Once the public hearing date is set, we will widely disseminate information about the hearing. Please keep in mind that DHEC has total control on the date and the location of this public hearing. The greatest sphere of influence we have as a county is the status of the road accessing this property, Horsefeathers Lane. We are very concerned that any such mining operation as the one proposed at this site will be highly detrimental to Horsefeathers Lane between the property and US21. Any mining operations as proposed would require an extensive and costly upgrade to Horsefeathers Lane. Additionally, we are concerned about safety issues related to heavy trucks entering US21 at this point and those trucks being unable to get up to safe road speeds commensurate with local traffic given the low entry point and the high hills on either side proceeding along US21. My concerns on this matter mirror the concerns of the rest of us on council and our administration. In addition, I would like to hear more about the verbal assurances from the property owners that their intention was to dig ponds and develop the property as vacation real estate. Given the current set of applications, it seems that this will be more of a mining operation than a vacation location, if approved.
We will keep you updated on any new information concerning this proposed mining operation.
If you are concerned about either or both of these issues, or any of the others on our Calhoun County Council meeting agenda, please consider attending the meeting on Monday, April 10 at 5:30 PM at 102 Courthouse Drive, Suite 108 St. Matthews, SC. A complete copy of the agenda may be viewed at either of these websites: http://www.calhouncounty.sc.gov/Pages/default.aspx or https://www.calhounledger.com/
Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns.
In your service...john.
Calhoun County District 3