Last updated: July 18. 2014 10:10AM - 746 Views
By Kevin Boozer kboozer@civitasmedia.com

Officer Stephen Selestino, right, is sworn in by Mayor Derek Underwood, left.
Officer Stephen Selestino, right, is sworn in by Mayor Derek Underwood, left.
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PROSPERITY — Leash rules, a smoking ban on town property and signage/pedestrian crosswalk on Main Street were among the action items addressed at the July 15 meeting of Prosperity Town Council.

Council unanimously approved second reading of an ordinance to prohibit smoking or use of tobacco products on town property. The ordinance passed with the understanding that smoking would be prohibited within 20 feet of a building entrance.

Council also discussed a dog leash policy for town properties and parks, particularly the language that would be included in any ordinance addressing the matter. Council members weighed options concerning the rights of dog owners versus the obligation to protect the public.

“I want to be sure that whatever we decide upon, we accommodate people who live in apartments and need a place to walk (and play) with their dogs,” Councilman Mike Hawkins said.

Councilman Robert Martin suggested the town concentrate on a specific area, such as no dogs allowed where children are at play, but that idea had ramifications that others on council questioned.

Attorney Tim Savage will look for an ordinance to model after to help incorporate language to help the town in its efforts at clarifying the leash policy.

Town council members also discussed at length various options for improved pedestrian crosswalk signage for Main Street.

Councilman Chad Hawkins reported on a talk he had with SCDOT about an LED sign which was deemed cost prohibitive.

DOT offered to put a yellowish green sign with down arrows.

Hawkins did not recommend breakaway signs, questioning their durability in such a narrow, high traffic area.

But Mike Hawkins said he hoped a flexible sign in Main Street could help some. He proposed the council wait another month to let a new DOT sign be put into place before taking other options such as the town purchasing a mobile sign for about $300 that supposedly could withstand 21 hits or more.

Council approved that course of action and also asked Town Administrator Karen Livingston to research other sign options in case they are needed in a month.

Martin also requested a greater police presence in that area of Main Street during high traffic times. Later in the meeting Officer Jimmy Richardson told council that more radar is being put in place and more tickets have been written now that the department has more staff to enforce the speeding laws.

Committee reports:

• Chad Hawkins said the town is moving forward with its recycling program and anticipates it being on the streets by December 6 or 8.

• Council agreed to consider making a parking lot out of property most recently used by the now closed Friendly Frog Cafe.

• Councilman Allen Gallman mentioned how well people were enjoying the seven-team summer baseball league. He also brought up the Christmas parade and reminded everyone volunteers are needed for the event.

• In the absence of Ed West due to his work commitments, Town Administrator Karen Livingston said that right now the town utilities department’s main tasks are tree clearing and performing preventative maintenance.

In other business:

• Officer Stephen Selestino was sworn in to the Prosperity Police Department.

• A veteran of law enforcement since 2002, Selestino said he hoped to work in Prosperity until he retires and that he felt very welcomed by the community and town officials.

• Attorney Tim Savage, who practices with Prosperity Town Attorney Hank Bufkin, sent Gateway to Prosperity sign specifications and plans to the bank for review which the bank said had to be done by its Columbia headquarters. Savage also sent a licensing agreement that would license the town to use the property for signage, because he said the town needed a legal basis before tax money were invested on an expenditure placed on private property.

• Council met in executive session for legal advice and received an update to agenda/public information protocol in light of recent S.C. Supreme Court rulings which currently state a public body can change an agenda in the course of a meeting. No action items were voted upon after council emerged from executive session.

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