City Council recognized Captain Burt Mohler for his retirement Tuesday after 26 years with the Newberry Fire Department. Mayor Foster Senn said it was a bittersweet moment to recognize an outstanding staff member and fireman that had served with great dedication and leadership for many years.
Mohler began working with the department on July 3, 1993 and had previously served as a volunteer with the Newberry Fire Department before making it his career.
Fire Chief Keith Minick said Mohler had done many good things within their department and for the community including helping with the goodfellow basket program, the department’s golf tournament and Kids Fun Day.
“He’s put in countless hours of educational training,” Minick said. “We appreciate the time and energy he’s put into serving the community.”
Mohler was presented with the helmet he wore as captain which is now retired along with a fire service window decal.
Senn updated council Tuesday of a recent proclamation signing designating July as Park and Recreation Month in the City of Newberry. In 1985, the U.S. House of Representatives designated the month of July as Park and Recreation Month, with the aim since then being to promote the benefits of local parks and recreation centers to the community, encouraging people to get outside, explore local parks and trails and enjoy outdoor activities.
“We’re proud of the city’s Parks, Recreation and Tourism department,” Senn said.
The official proclamation was presented to Parks, Recreation and Tourism Director Scott Sawyer Tuesday before council.
“We stay very busy, but we couldn’t do it without every other city department’s support,” Sawyer said.
Utility Director Tim Baker was also recognized Tuesday for his recent election to the South Carolina Association of Municipal Power Systems (SCAMPS) Board.
“With only five people on the board, it’s quite an honor to have someone on the board that represents our town,” Senn said. “We’re honored they’ve chosen Tim.”
Assistant Utility Director David Eldridge provided his monthly update for council Tuesday on the fiber rollout within the city limits. Eldridge said that zone one was approximately 75-80 percent completed. Within zone one, are five fiber distribution areas, with three previously being released for service.
Eldridge said for customers within this zone, there was currently about a ten-day process from putting an order in to being hooked up to the fiber network.
Under new business, council approved a request for outside water service for a property located at 5682 SC Highway 34-121. Senn said the property owner had agreed to execute an annexation covenant indicating a willingness to annex if the property became contiguous to the city limits and council determined it was in the best interest of the city to annex the property.
The property is adjacent to an existing city water line and will require no extension beyond a standard tap.
Motion was made to approve by Councilman Lemont Glasgow and seconded by Councilman Thomas Louis Boyd.
Also under new business:
- Motion was made by Boyd and seconded by Councilman David DuBose to approve a request to allow alcohol (beer and wine only) in designated events areas of Newberry Oktoberfest on Saturday, October 5 sold by the designated event vendors and venues with proper permitting using pre-approved plastic cups to be no larger than 16 ounces. The event area includes Main Street from Nance to Holman Streets, Boyce Street from Nance to Lindsay Streets, McKibben from Boyce to Main Streets, Caldwell from Boyce to Friend Streets, College from Boyce to Main Streets and Lindsay from Martin to Main Streets.
- Motion was made by Boyd and seconded by Councilman Edwin Wicker to allow the city’s police department to execute a mutual aid agreement with Saluda County Sheriff’s Office. Senn said the Saluda County Sheriff’s Office approached the Newberry Police Department to sign a mutual aid agreement for the purpose of securing to each other the benefits of mutual aid in the event of natural disaster, disorder, special events, emergency situations or any other law enforcement activities.
- Council approved first reading of an ordinance to amend the city’s flood damage prevention ordinance. Recently, Senn said city staff received communication from the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) – Flood Mitigation Program requesting an update to the Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance to safeguard the public interest by protecting the health, safety and welfare of the citizens of the city. The Legislature of the State of South Carolina has in SC Code of Laws, Title 5, and amendments thereto, delegated the responsibility to local governmental units to adopt regulations designed to promote the public health, safety, and general welfare of its citizenry. The adoption of these changes to the model code would align the City with the state regulation. Motion was made by Glasgow and seconded by Boyd to approve first reading.
- Following executive session, council entered into open session with a motion made by Glasgow and seconded by Councilman David Force to appoint Corbett Miller to a three-year term of the Planning Commission. Motion was then made by Councilman Zebbie Goudelock and seconded by Boyd to appoint Kevin Clamp to a two-year term of the Architectural Review Board.
Mayor Foster Senn, Mayor Pro Tem Zebbie Goudelock, Captain Burt Mohler, Fire Chief Keith Minick, City Manager Matt DeWitt.
Sarah Mohler, Laura Mohler, Lynn Mohler, Burt Mohler, Noah Mohler, Fire Chief Keith Minick.