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Government

  • County may lease office space in IL

    Panhandle residents might get some sort of satellite county government offices in the not-so-distant future.
    Lancaster County Council directed staff Monday night to flesh out the concept of leasing office space in Indian Land.
    “From a customer-service standpoint, it’s something we need to do, but we are under financial constraints,” said Lancaster County Administrator Steve Willis.  

  • Tinkering with stormwater ordinance sets off Carnes

    It didn’t take Lancaster County Councilman Brian Carnes long Monday night to vent his frustration over the proposed stormwater ordinance that would add $75 to the tax bills of Panhandle homeowners.
    Before the third and final reading on the ordinance, council members were presented a number of changes to the proposal, but had no time to study the 30-page document.
    An indignant Carnes immediately made a motion to postpone the final reading of the controversial ordinance until Sept. 11. The public hearing was held as scheduled Monday.

  • Van Wyck’s 1st municipal election Nov. 14

    With a successful vote for incorporation wrapped up two weeks ago, Van Wyck residents will take the next step in their historic journey as a community the second week in November with an election to choose the new town’s first government.  
    Lancaster County Director of Elections Mary Ann Hudson said the non-partisan election to choose Van Wyck’s first mayor and four at-large council members is Nov. 14.

  • Lancaster makes job offer to finance director finalist

    The city of Lancaster could have a new finance director in the next few days.
    Lancaster City Council unanimously agreed to offer the job to Daniel Driggers on Tuesday night after meeting behind closed doors to discuss finalists.
    A Columbia native, Driggers is the former chief financial officer for Richland County, where he oversaw an annual budget of more than $300 million.

  • Probate judge will not seek another term

    Sandy Estridge, Lancaster County’s probate judge for 22 years, announced Tuesday that she will not run for reelection next year.
    “I’m ready to retire…. I didn’t plan on working this long,” said the 70-year-old Estridge, who is serving her sixth term in office.
    “My children want me to spend more time with the family, so that’s what I’m going to do,” she said.

  • Heath Springs might do without municipal court

    HEATH SPRINGS – Now that Heath Springs no longer has a law enforcement officer on regular patrol – a move to save the town money – officials are considering doing away with municipal court and asking county magistrates to handle any cases that come along.
    After all, the logic goes, without police patrols, chances are there won’t be a lot of cases for municipal court to handle.

  • Grumbling council votes for $75 IL fee

    In a decision that didn’t seem to please anybody, Lancaster County Council passed second reading of an ordinance Monday night that would add a $75 stormwater fee to the tax bills of homeowners in the north end of the county.
    The fee would also impact commercial property, varying by size.
    The fee, which requires one more council vote, would raise $1.57 million in the first year, to be used to start a new county department that would address stormwater issues.  

  • Ballots set in Heath Springs, Kershaw

    Election filing closed Tuesday in the nonpartisan Heath Springs and Kershaw town council races set for Nov. 7.
    Five candidates filed to run in Heath Springs, including three for mayor. The town has a mayor and four at-large council seats.
    Mayor Ann Taylor and longtime council members Ted Sowell and Mark Bridges announced last month they would not seek new terms.
    Taylor has been mayor since 1991. Bridges has 33 years on council, and Sowell has served three terms.

  • Voters OK town of Van Wyck

    Van Wyck residents overwhelmingly voted to become a town during Tuesday’s incorporation election.
    Residents of the community’s 1.4-square-mile “original incorporation area” voted 67-7 to incorporate, according to Lancaster County elections officials. Incorporation is the first step in a plan that calls for the new town to grow through voluntary annexation of adjacent properties.

  • Kershaw zoning proposal would allow adult day-cares, nursing homes

    KERSHAW – Town officials are moving to change Kershaw’s zoning regulations so that adult day-care facilities and nursing homes can locate in the town.
    Day-care facilities for children were already allowed, but because of an odd oversight in the town’s 18-year-old Unified Development Ordinance, there was no provision for adult day-cares and nursing homes.
    Now, county and Kershaw officials are working together to correct an omission that no one knew existed until recently.