Local fire departments helping in Columbia

Firefighters from several Anderson County Departments were deployed to Columbia Sunday to assist with rescue and water supply efforts following catastrophic flooding. Whitefield Fire Department provided a tanker truck to support water supply Read More »


Saluda River at Pelzer roaring, but below flood stage

The Williamston, Pelzer and Piedmont area, along with most of the upstate may have dodged a bullet, escaping most of the heavy rainfall experienced across the state over the weekend. The Saluda Read More »


Electrical fire after tree fell on power line

West Pelzer firefighters work at the scene of an electrical fire after a tree fell onto a power line Sunday afternoon. Firefighters had to detour traffic for more than an hour from Read More »


Three vehicle accident – Anderson Hwy.

A Whitefield firefighter stands by at the scene of a three vehicle accident on Saturday afternoon on Anderson Highway. The three car rear end collision blocked one lane of the highway for Read More »


Big Creek full

Big Creek in Williamston’s Mineral Spring Park reached bank full status mid-day Sunday, however it had not flooded Sunday afternoon. Read More »


Gatewood entrance erosion gets worse

Williamston Mayor Mack Durham along with town and county officials continue to monitor the Gatewood subdivision entrancway in Williamston for continued erosion. The volumn of water in Big Creek resulting from recent rains is contributing Read More »


Tree falls on car – West Pelzer

A large tree fell on a car at a residence on a Railroad Boulevard in West Pelzer Sunday afternoon. The tree blocked part of the roadway and was removed by a West Read More »


One injured – Freeman Drive and Shiloh Church Road

Wren firefighters work at the scene of a two vehicle accident Sunday afternoon. A car and truck collided at the intersection of Freeman Drive and Shiloh Church Road. Pelzer EMS transported one person Read More »


Taking care of Ace – River Road at Hwy. 20

Pelzer EMS paramedic Julia Nichols holds Ace while other paramedics check on his owner following a wreck Saturday evening. One person was transported to an area hospital following a two vehicle collision Read More »

Williamston Fire Department collecting hygeine items

The Williamston Fire Department will be collecting personal hygiene products for flood victims in Columbia from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday. Local officials say these items are needed more than water. The donated items will be delivered to Columbia by the Fire Department.

Anderson County personnel assisting in flood relief

Anderson County Emergency Management, Emergency Medical Services & Special Operations and Sheriff’s Office staff are already on scene and active in flood relief efforts in the midlands. The South Carolina Emergency Management Division is coordinating relief efforts throughout the disaster area with the assistance of the South Carolina National Guard and local emergency management and law enforcement officials in affected areas.

Anderson County personnel are assisting with:

· Restoration of communication & internet services in Manning

· Tracking mutual aid costs in Richland County

· Assisting with Emergency Operations Center in Richland County

· Updating Media/Social Media

· Planning & Logistics

· Security detail at water distribution sites in Richland County

“County Council applauds our staff for their willingness to assist our neighbors throughout the State of South Carolina,” said Council Chairman Tommy Dunn. “We acknowledge their sacrifice to be away from their families in order to help those in need in the aftermath of emergency situations. Anderson County is fortunate to have escaped the brunt of the flooding and we are more than happy to take part in relief efforts. Please stay tuned for updates. As days turn into weeks, our citizens may have opportunities to make donations of water and other necessities until our neighbors are back on stable ground.”

Obituaries week of Oct. 7, 2015


Audit shows Williamston in good financial position

By David Meade

During their regular monthly meeting Monday, Williamston Town Council heard a positive audit report which Mayor Mack Durham said reflected his focus to get the town in strong financial position and ready for future growth.

Ken Meadows, of Greene Finney and Horton CPA, said the town received an “unmodified opinion”, or the best they can receive, on their 2014-15 financial audit. Meadows said the town’s General Fund balance had increased by $245,000 to $2,014,000 as of June 30, 2015. A portion of that amount, $140,000 is restricted funds for the cemetery and the hospitality tax fund.

The remaining balance of $1,874,000 is unassigned and amounts to 71 percent of the town’s yearly budget. The minimum fund balance recommended by auditors to keep in reserve is 16.7 percent, or about two months expenditures.

With reserves enough to cover eight months, Meadows said, “It is a very good level to have.”

Williamston approves landscape ordinance

By Davi d Meade

During their meeting Monday, Williamston Town Council approved first reading on a landscaping ordinance and decided the town’s historic civil war cannon will no longer be allowed to be used or displayed outside the county.

Williamston Mayor Mack Durham said council, acting on a request by the Macbeth Light Artillery group, decided they want the cannon to be on display only in Anderson County. Durham said the cannon will be used locally to attract visitors and that council wanted it to stay in the area.

Properties identified for blight program

In Williamston

By David Meade

Anderson County Council District 7 representative Cindy Wilson told Williamston Town Council Monday that the county has $2.5 million available to help demolish structures in areas suffering from blight. “It is another tool in the arsenal for public improvement,” she said.

Mike Foreman of Anderson County Planning and Community Development told council that twenty properties in the Williamston area have been identified for possible acquisition and demolition under the Neighborhood Initiative Program (NIP).

Foreman explained the program to council stating that Williamston was one of eleven targeted areas in the county that could participate in the program. According to Foreman, the NIP, with the consent of property owners, pays a negotiated price for dilapidated properties, demolishing them and provides upkeep for three years.

The program allows up to $35,000 per property, but participation is on a first come, first serve basis, county wide, Foreman said. Foreman said each of the twenty property owners will be contacted by the county to determine if any of them are interested in having their property bought and cleaned up as part of the program.

ACTC reviews requests from West Pelzer, Williamston

Anderson County Transportation Committee

By Stan Welch

Members of the Anderson County Transportation Committee, or ACTC, heard from the county’s engineering consultants, CoTransco, at a Monday workshop concerning the various projects requested by the county’s municipalities.

The projects are restricted to secondary state roads, and are being funded by a one time allocation of approximately $216 million across the state. Anderson County’s share came to approximately $7.5 million.

West Pelzer had requested repairs, which will basically consist of patching and paving, for seven roads. The total mileage requested came to .87 miles, with an estimated total cost of $234.500, but the engineering firm recommended removal of one project.

Anderson County resources assisting in Lexington County

By Stan Welch

Taylor Jones, Director of Anderson County’s Emergency Preparedness Division, is well aware of how lucky Anderson County was during the remarkable weather events of the last week or so.

He is even more aware of that now, because after cleaning up the relatively few loose ends in Anderson following the storms that absolutely drenched most of the state, he and several other emergency management personnel are in the Midlands, assisting in Lexington County.

“The folks down there called us Monday and asked if we could help. We were on the way by that afternoon. We had been in contact with different management units all over the state since Thursday. We had been preparing here for forecasts of up to sixteen inches of rain, with most of it coming during the Clemson game, which meant maybe a hundred thousand people in the midst of a tremendous storm.”

Jones said that his department and the county public works department responded to one hundred sixty six calls between Friday afternoon and midnight Saturday. “We were blessed because even then we got off light. We had some trees down and roads underwater. We barricaded thirty three roads temporarily but by Monday, the worst was over. We had no major issues or dangerous situations.”

County approves first reading on ordinances

By Stan Welch

Anderson County Council took up several ordinances Tuesday night, though none were up for final approval. Two ordinances advanced to that point after being given second reading approval, and will be given final consideration at the next meeting. One of those would redefine the terms of boards and commissions which are appointed by the Council. The proposed ordinance would set those terms as being at the pleasure of the Council, meaning that they could be replaced at any time.

Around the County . . .

Anderson County Public Works Division reported the following for week of Oct. 7, 2015:

·         Several Public Works Division departments were represented at the Emergency Operations planning meeting in preparation for the weekend’s predicted heavy rains.

Building and Codes

·         Plan Review Staff Meetings: 1) Met with Engineer/Contractor to discuss preliminary plans to be submitted for Up-Fit to Walker Farm Store.

·         Required staff attended the Planning & Public Works Meeting in the Administrator’s Conference Room. Concerns were brought up regarding Quality Construction Standards and how they were addressed. The International Residential Code (IRC) Anderson County Enforces, which is required by State Law, is the only minimum standard that has to be met in regards to construction. Any other more stringent standards would be required to be approved by County Council through an Ordinance Process.

Around the County . . .

Anderson Couty Public Works Department reported the following projects for the week of Sept. 30, 2015:

Building and Codes

·         10 Structures that were targeted for our 2015-2016 Substandard Housing Demolition Plan has been awarded to Moats Construction and will begin on October 1st, 2015. This includes; 1008 Kings Road, 7 River Street, 10 Q Street, 11 R Street, 15 River Street, 113 Glenn Street, 115 S. Smythe Street, 1157 W. Franklin Street, 2104 Whitehall Road and 4024 Whitehall Road. Thanks to County Council, we continue to make progress in addressing these blighted properties.

Drug bust in Piedmont Tuesday night

Anderson County Sheriff’s Deputies are in the process of obtaining warrants in connection with a drug bust on Haynes St. in Piedmont late Tuesday night. Two people were taken into custody during the incident which involved methamphetamine and several guns and may involve the recovery of stolen items. Additional information will be posted on The Journal website at when more details are available.

WPD September Report

responds to 1926 calls

Williamston Police Chief Tony Taylor reported the following statistics for the Williamston Police Department for the month of September:

Uniform Patrol Officers had: 1926 Calls for service

Williamston Police Report

Williamston Police investigated the following incidents:

Sept. 29 – Kayla Gail Eaton, 28, 562 Old River Rd., Pelzer was placed on trespass notice for 100 Williamston Court after officers were dispatched to the location. No additional information reported. M. Beeman, M. E. Simmons investigated.

Sept. 29 – Joshua Michael Deese, 33, 120 Bellview Ave., Pelzer was arrested for driving under suspension 3rd and outstanding warrant with Williamston PD after officers observed him driving a vehicle on North Hamilton. J. Sargent investigated.

Anderson County Sheriff’s Report

Anderson County Sheriff’s Deputies investigated the following:


Oct. 2 – J.D. Sparkman responded to 106 James Rd. where Joseph Tallyen reported that someone had kicked in his door and entered his home. They stole firearms valued at $1500.

Oct. 2 – J.T. Smith was dispatched to 142 Denise Rd. where Jamie Galloway reported that someone threw rocks at his home, breaking a bedroom window.

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