• City council OK's increasing waste fees, rejects salary increases

    Garbage cans, a grant and no pay increase for any employees may hold the answers to saving the city from its presumed deficit.
    Factoring in new numbers recommended by city council last Tuesday, City Administrator Jeff Kerr and City Finance Director Barbara Swierszcz crafted a new budget proposal devoid of a 3 percent salary increase for high achieving city employees, but containing a change to city garbage collection.
    The result was a $324,000 or so reduction in the city's deficit, whittling it down from $360,000 to $36,000.

  • Fighting a deficit: Discussions of layoffs, hiking waste fees begins

    “Downsize” and “outsource” were the buzzwords at city council's second budget workshop Tuesday night, and may become familiar terms for residents and employees as city leaders brainstorm plans to cushion a burgeoning deficit's impact.  
    With roughly a $368,000 shortfall to work through, City Administrator Jeff Kerr and City Finance Director Barbara Swierszcz hit the ground running by meeting with department heads and discerning methods of adjusting the budget to increase the city's revenue next fiscal year.

  • In money cruch, some streets get no love

    The same morning a major storm thrashed Chester two weeks ago, residents of Nella Lane were left with a fallen Oak tree that smashed a fence and power lines, and a transformer that fell into a neighbor's house.
    But the street's residents say a downed Oak and transformer aren't the only problems they face every time a strong-enough wind blows.
    The street and surrounding areas suffer from broken pipes, rainwater that wades in residents' yards and on their porches and overall neglect, said Bubba Jackson, a 30-year resident of the street.

  • Candidate filing for Fort Lawn council seat opens today

    Candidate filing for the seat vacated earlier this month by Fort Lawn Town Councilwoman Linda Roddey opens noon today and closes June 3 at noon.
    On May 3 at the regular monthly meeting of the Fort Lawn Town Council, Mayor John Rumford read Roddey's letter of resignation to the council.

  • Lucas talks turkey (feathers)

    A snowstorm in Chester in May?
    Chester County Councilman Archie Lucas said he has seen several lately and he's tired of them. This kind of "snowstorm" doesn't fall from the sky, though, it blows out the back of trucks.
    At Monday night's meeting of Chester County Council, "disbursements of turkey feathers from trucks" was on the agenda. Lucas said he frequently encountered turkey trucks on the road. So many feathers blow off the birds, he said, that it literally looks like a big snowstorm.

  • Councilman expresses disapproval of city procedures

    Chester City Council has failed to operate properly in the last couple of years.
    That's the opinion Chester City Councilman George Caldwell aired Monday night in response to several in-house decisions and changes occurring without what he considers the entire council's approval.
    In the six-year council member's view, the council hasn't lived up to its obligations in conducting proper procedures.
    "We as a council have failed to make sure we implement the proper form," he said.

  • Richburg Council approves budget

    The Richburg Town Council voted unanimously last week to approve its $117,946 budget for the 2011-2012 fiscal year. Four members of the five-person council, Mayor James Harris and Council members Saye McCrorey, Flora Barber and Ed Sharpe, were in attendance at the May 4 monthly meeting. Councilman Barney Nichols was absent due to hospitalization, the mayor said.
    “Mr. Nichols is improving but keep him in your prayers,” Harris said to the council.

  • Two new faces joining city council

    When Chester City Council convenes its next meeting, two new council members will be seated on the dais.
    In the Ward I council race, William "Budda" Killian, running for the third time, defeated one-term incumbent Alan Clack 556 to 492. Killian said he wanted to focus on bringing jobs to Chester and on giving young people productive recreation options. He said he would serve the entire city.

  • Stringfellow returns to mayor's office

    The order of succession in the Chester mayor's office will now read Foster, Stringfellow, Foster, Stringfellow.
    In Tuesday's municipal election, former Mayor Wanda Stringfellow defeated incumbent Mitch Foster by a count of 579 to 503. Stringfellow defeated Foster in 1999, then fended off a close challenge from him (by three votes) in 2003. Foster defeated Stringfellow to reclaim the office in 2007.

  • Fort Lawn town council meeting offers "shockers"

    New business at Tuesday's monthly meeting of the Fort Lawn Town Council included first-reading of the 2011-2012 budget, a council member's resignation notice and information about a $2,000 unpaid invoice for equipment received by the Fort Lawn Fire Department.
    All council members, with the exception of Councilwoman Linda Roddey, were present at the 7 p.m. meeting chaired by Mayor John Rumford.