‘Zero Tolerance’ traffic enforcement under way

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

CAMERON – Cameron Police Chief Chris Hales Monday night announced the implementation of a “Zero Tolerance” policy for enforcement of the town’s traffic laws. He noted that particular emphasis will be given to enforcing the speeding and seat belt laws as well as cracking down on driving under the influence.

Hales said traffic stops conducted by elements of the Law Enforcement Network and sponsored by the South Carolina Office of Highway and Traffic Safety will begin this month. A large, yellow sign will be placed at each of the four entrances into town on S.C. Highway 6 and U. S. 176.

Also during Monday night’s Vance Town Council meeting, Councilwoman Amanda Jenkins requested an update on a new property cleanup ordinance, which has been pending for quite a while. Town Clerk Cathy Wiles said

“The delay is with the (town) attorney,” Town Clerk Cathy Wiles said, adding that she will continue to contact him for action on the ordinance.

Mayor Russ Middleton said, “Maybe we need to get another attorney.”

In other business, Wiles reported that CSX Director of Public Affairs John W. Dillard had contacted the town to verify the closing of the two railroad crossings in Cameron. She said she was told that as soon as the town sends them photos of the barricades, the railroad will pay the town $10,000 per crossing as agreed.

Also during the meeting, Hales reported that 29 tickets were written in January, which included one arrest for driving under suspension, one arrest for simple possession of marijuana, 14 calls for service, three assists to the Highway Patrol, four EMS first responder calls and five fire calls.

Fire Chief Charles Polin reported eight fire calls for January: one structure fire, three false alarms, one woods and grass fire and three assists to EMS. He also reported that the tanker brake repair had been completed and the tanker was returned to service. The repair cost was $6,500, which was paid from Lost Revenue Funds at no cost to the town.

In addition, Polin said reported that the Orangeburg Department of Public Utilities gave an estimate of $9,241 to put in a fire hydrant at the Cameron Fire Station. He said the hydrant is needed to keep the fire trucks off the road when taking on water. Polin said that he had a lower estimate from a contractor but DPU would not allow anyone else to install it.

“I think that’s too steep,” Middleton said of the $9,241 estimate from DPU.

Polin responded, “DPU is making money.”

“I don’t think you will ever get them (DPU) to (do) better than that,” Councilman Johnny Wesner said. “It’s a cash cow for the City of Orangeburg.”

The mayor said he would talk to the DPU contact, Gene Ulmer.

In other business:

# The town’s financial report ending Jan. 31 showed revenues of $35,116.61; expenses of $24,621.50; a checking account balance of $128,668.45; a fire department checking account of $6,146.66 and a savings account balance of $37,220.36, for a total balance of $172,035.47.

# In response to a question about putting sidewalks along Cemetery Road, the mayor said, “Engineers are working on it.” He said it is a huge project that will take some time.

# During public comments, resident Phyllis Ulmer said the county had responded to Marion Black’s request that something be done about the cats around his house and had captured 23 cats.

T&D Correspondent Larry P. Jordan can be reached by phone at 803-874-3276. Discuss this and other stories online at TheTandD.com.