By Al Dozier
Car break-ins in the Irmo area average around 100 a year, according to a report presented to the Irmo Town Council Tuesday by Police Chief Don Perry.
Perry said the break-ins and thefts usually do not result in damage to vehicles and often occur in unlocked cars.
In 2016 there were 102 break-ins, but only 16 resulting in damages. In 2017 there were 89, with only 17 resulting in damage. In 2018, 111 break-ins were reported, with 18 resulting in damages.
“We are averaging what would be normal,” Perry said.
But he said citizens should know their car doors should be locked.
In other action, the council approved a resolution allowing Substitute Municipal Judge Kim Hoffman to perform duties as the court administrator. She will be authorized to perform all duties except signing warrants.
The council also received an update on the new Fire Department facility from Irmo Fire Chief Mike Sonefeld. He said bids for the project will be received in January, and construction should be completed by June.
The council gave final reading to an ordinance update that provides zoning officials the authority to provide “reasonable accommodations” for people with disabilities.
The council decided to delay action on a contract with TEAM Logic IT to upgrade the town’s website for ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) compliance until February. The town would have to pay a one-time fee of $3,700 and a monthly maintenance contract of $700. The delay would place the expenses in a new budget year.
The council also approved a policy for advertising openings on the town’s boards and commissions. Councilman Barry Walker Sr. sought the changes because he said potential applicants are unaware of the vacancies.
The new policy would require notice be posted on the town’s website of a vacancy two weeks before it is to be filled. The policy would also require that each year the town post quarterly updates of positions and their expiration dates.
The council made two new appointments at Tuesday’s meeting. Larry Slaughter, chairman of the Okra Strut Commission, was reappointed to his post. John Lindower was also reappointed.
The council approved a Letter of Credit in the amount of $100,610.76 for the Shoals Landing project, Phase 11, with an expiration date of Oct. 31, 2021.
Mayor Hardy King led a discussion on council meeting “decorum.”
King said “we have been guilty” of disrespectful comments.
“Name calling has been a problem,” he said, noting that it’s often hard when people are being disrespectful of each other.
“Let’s try to do a better job of being respectful to one another,” he said.
During the public participation period, Irmo resident Michelle Carpenter said true leadership calls for the council to listen to citizens and address their concerns.
The council also continued to hear concerns about the well-being of disabled resident who is seeking court action against the town. Questions have been raised about whether she can be safe without the carport roof she has requested
Irmo resident Patrick Donlon and others have urged the council to allow the resident to go ahead with the improvements so she will no longer be endangered by wet grounds that have caused her to fall. They say waiting for a court settlement would take too long.
Councilwoman Kathy Condom said the council would have to get permission from their attorney to allow the improvements.