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Local News

  • '08 election candidates lining up: Three council, three county offices to be on ballot

    Three seats on Chester County Council will be on the ballot in November, as well as three constitutional offices -- Chester County Sheriff, Coroner and Clerk of Court.

    Sheriff Robby Benson has said he will run for re-election.

    Coroner Terry Tinker has filed to run for the seat to which he was appointed in 2005.

    Chester County Council District 4, held by Tommy Martin, Council District 3, held by Joe Branham, and District 6, held by Alex Oliphant are on the ballot. Martin has served a full-four year term. Branham and Oliphant are filling out other terms.

  • VIDEO & STORY: Former gang member inspires students
  • Foster declines pay for administrative duties

    Chester Mayor Mitch Foster has declined an offer to receive payment for additional duties he has assumed at city hall since the resignation of David Mobley as city administrator in November.

    In January, Chester City Council voted unanimously to pay Foster a $500 a week stipend for taking on some duties the city's administrator would normally handle. At the time, Foster agreed to accept the money, but at Monday's meeting he said he would "like to respectfully decline the stipend."

    Foster said he was unsure of the legality of the payment.

  • WEB EXCLUSIVE: City implements fines at Evergreen Cemetery

    Chester City Council's vote to institute a $100 fine to funeral homes that do not follow normal protocol when it comes to burials at Evergreen Cemetery has gone into effect.

    Last June, the council heard from public works director Raymond Douglas, who said funeral homes were calling him during off-hours to mark graves. Douglas said he was sometimes called just hours before a funeral was to take place.

    "We are called out quite often," Douglas said then. "Sometimes it is two or three times a month."

    Public Works office hours are 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

  • UPDATE: Great Falls fire captain charged with arson

    Great Falls Fire Capt. David Dutton was arrested Tuesday and charged with arson.

    Chester County law enforcement officials also consider Dutton a person of interest in two other fires.

    An arrest warrant from the S.C. Law Enforcement Division said David Allen Dutton of 10 Farrow St. was charged with third degree arson.

  • Chester woman charged with embezzlement

    A federal grand jury in Columbia has indicted a Chester woman.

    The grand jury indicted Michelle Waters Dawkins, 37, of Chester. The indictment charges her with embezzling from First Citizens Bank, while employed there between January and June 2007. The indictment says she stole more than $1,000.

    The maximum penalty on the charge is a fine of up to $1 million and imprisonment for 30 years.

    The case was investigated by the FBI and is assigned to Assistant U.S. Attorney Dean A. Eichelberger of the Columbia office for prosecution.

  • Tinker says he will run for coroner

    Chester County Coroner Terry Tinker announced Monday night he is running for the office he has held since June 2005.

    Tinker sought the office in 2004. He forced a runoff against incumbent Watson Wright, but came in second.

    Wright died in 2005, however, succumbing to congestive heart failure. Tinker was appointed by Gov. Mark Sanford to succeed Wright.

    Tinker will run as a Democrat for the office.

    While in office, he has hired deputies and worked with other agencies.

  • WEB UPDATE: Chester asked to join IBT lawsuit

    The City of Chester may contribute to a legal dispute over a transfer of Catawba River basin water, but only if the price for pitching in comes down.

    Chester, along with all other counties and municipalities in the Catawba region, is being asked to give money to help pay for a lawsuit that will keep the North Carolina towns of Concord and Kannapolis from removing millions of gallon a day from the Catawba.

  • UPDATE: City finally gets '03-4 audit report

    After years of work, the City of Chester finally received its 2003-4 audit on Monday.

    The audit was prepared by Camp Moring and Cannon LLC. Connie Cannon of the firm addressed city council on Monday to highlight some of the audit's findings.

    The finding that Mayor Mitch Foster bemoaned as "very disappointing" was a $436,000 net loss in city assets from 2003-4. Foster said the loss came from budgeting problems, sales of properties and other transactions.

  • EXCLUSIVE: Graham says Montrose coming along

    A lengthy approval process for Montrose Plantation is ahead of schedule, according to the developer, and a recent state grant is helping it proceed.

    Montrose Plantation is the massive 6,300-acre mixed use project owned by Charlotte real estate investor Mel Graham.

    The property is located along Interstate 77 just 38 miles south of Charlotte in Chester County.

    "The lengthy approval process is going extremely well," Graham said. "We are about mid-way through the approval process which we originally expected to take several years to complete. We are ahead of schedule."