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Sheriff to have control of emergency department

January 17, 2019

KINGSTREE, S.C. – The Williamsburg County Council approved on first reading Tuesday evening an ordinance to transfer control of the county’s E-911 Operations Center and Emergency Preparedness Department to the sheriff.

The ordinance provides for the transfer of personnel, equipment and budget authority of both departments under the control of Williamsburg County Sheriff Stephen R. Gardner.

During her report, Williamsburg County Supervisor Tiffany Wright told the council that she felt it best that the environmental services department also be placed under the sheriff’s office.

“Now basically what this is, is because the environmental services department has sworn officers that work within their area, there are certain components of their job that require them to be involved or be privy to certain sensitive information,” Wright said at Tuesday’s council meeting.

The council voted to transfer the control of the environmental serviced department to the sheriff’s office.

An ordinance was also passed on first reading to authorize a deed conveying interest in a portion of TMS: 45-453-003 containing 1.75 acres on Cowhead Road in Hemingway to the town of Hemingway pursuant to a fee in lieu of property tax agreement between Williamsburg County and Dart Industries, Inc., also known as Tupperware U.S. Inc., and execution of a partial release of the lien of the same.

Marcia Williams and Billy Stephens spoke to the council Tuesday about bringing their Mastermind’s Academy and U Pass It On training program to Williamsburg County. The business partners now have an operation in Hartsville.

Stephens said the root of unemployment is usually the lack of education. While there are colleges and vocational classes, there are still a lot of people without a job, he said.

“The reason for that is they’re not qualified,” Stephens said. “Everything needs a good foundation. U Pass It On, the thought behind that is, we want people to pass on the skills they have to help othesr prepare for a job.”

Stephens said the program offers training for 30 basic skills such as clerical, cooking, carpentry, masonry and electrician, among others.

Williams said the Mastermind’s Academy deals with a lot of youth who have dropped out of high school and have children.

“While we have their children in the morning time, he (Stephens) handles them with the job-training skills to provide jobs for them,” Williams said. “We do have a lot of contracts with a lot of organizations. When they pretty much finish our program, we pretty much put them on jobs. That’s what we do. We pretty much target anybody.”

Stephens and Williams are interested in bringing their operation to Williamsburg County, but have not yet secured a location.

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