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During an interview with Sky News’s Backstage podcast, the award-winning film director discussed his decision to cast singer Halle Bailey as Ariel in the new live-action version of The Little Mermaid.

Calhoun County Council is moving forward with an ordinance establishing rules for council meetings.

The proposed ordinance would require people to contact the clerk to council five days before a county council meeting if they want to officially appear on the agenda.

The five-day deadline is only for individuals wanting to officially make an appearance on the agenda.

Individuals who want to speak at a meeting, but do not want to formally be on the agenda, can still do so by filling in a sign-up sheet at council chambers prior to the meeting.

The comments will be limited to three minutes per person, or ten minutes per group/organization, unless additional time is granted in advance by council.

Individuals will not be allowed to speak more than twice on the same matter and no more than ten people will be allowed to speak at a meeting.

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Council gave second reading to the ordinance last week.

In other business:

• Council unanimously selected ClearWater Solutions for the contract to be on call after hours to help provide water and sewer emergency services to the county. The contract will be for $75 an hour as needed. The company has a Lexington location.

• Council unanimously agreed to the purchase of a generator for the Creston Emergency Medical Services and Creston Fire Station.

There is currently no back-up power at either EMS or the fire station.

The total cost for the generator is $81,256.

The county received Duke Energy and Dominion Energy grants totaling $47,756 and a United States Department of Agriculture Mini-Grant for $33,500 to help purchase the generator.

• Council unanimously agreed to contract with Blake Boland Residential Builders LLC to upgrade THE agricultural building located near the courthouse complex in St. Matthews.

County Administrator John McLauchlin said the county is required to renew its contract with the USDA every 10 years and that the USDA is requiring the county to remodel and update its facility.

Upgrades will include new flooring, paint, additions to the building’s information technology room and the addition of heating and cooling in the IT room. The contract is for $35,025.

• Council gave unanimous second reading approval to tax incentives for Columbia-based Red Rock Developments to build another speculative building at the Sandy Run Industrial Park. The company plans to build a 519,000-square-foot speculative building. The amount of the investment is still pending engineering and design work.

In addition to the fee-in-lieu of taxes incentive, the ordinance also provides the company with special source revenue credits and includes the project in a multi-county industrial park.

• Council gave unanimous approval to an ordinance that would allow the county to recover costs associated with fighting commercial and industrial fires.

County officials say the cost recovery ordinance will help the county recoup money spent fighting commercial and industrial fires, especially fires that require the county to use foam. The cost of using foam and other materials is not covered by insurance, McLauchlin said.

The Calhoun County Fire District Board would be responsible for distributing the funds to the department that incurred the cost.

• Council unanimously appointed at-large member Austin Cope to the Calhoun County Fire District.

• Council was informed the county’s community paramedicine program was featured on South Carolina Educational Television’s Wednesday morning broadcast. The county EMS program works with private ambulance services to provide patient convalescent transport in non-emergency situations. County officials have said EMS cannot handle the patient load of all those needing transportation to doctors’ offices or dialysis transports.

• Council entered into closed session to discuss a personnel matter.

Upon returning to open session, council came out with a letter of commendation for McLauchlin related to his work in bringing Blanchard Equipment to Calhoun County.

Contact the writer: gzaleski@timesanddemocrat.com or 803-533-5551. Check out Zaleski on Twitter at @ZaleskiTD.

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