Chapin council calls special meeting to amend ordinance conflict - - Columbia, South Carolina

Chapin council calls special meeting to amend ordinance conflicting with state law


A special called Chapin Town Council meeting was scheduled by three council members to amend a town ordinance that conflicts with state law.

Mayor Pro Tem Vivian "Bibi" Atkins and council members Kay Hollis and Robert Frick called for the Thursday meeting to have a first reading to amend a town ordinance that is currently interpreted to allow the mayor veto power over all agenda items. The conflict between the town ordinance and state law came to light after Judge G. Thomas Cooper Jr. dismissed a lawsuit filed by the same three council members against Mayor Skip Wilson and Councilman Greg White. Cooper cited a town ordinance that allows Wilson to have final say over agenda items.

Last week, the majority of council filed a motion for Cooper to reconsider his previous decision. In that motion, plaintiffs' attorney Spencer "Andy" Syrett wrote that "town ordinances in conflict with state statutes are invalid."

The suggested changes to the town ordinance:

• remove the current section stating the agenda shall be approved by the mayor before distribution;

• adds that the agenda shall include the date, time and place of the meeting with notice to the media and others requesting a notice;

• and any items requested by council 24 hours before the meeting are to be considered by council for placement on the agenda.

Also at Thursday's meeting, council plans to appoint a municipal attorney for the town since the town's former attorney resigned several months ago.

Thursday's meeting will be at 7 p.m. at Chapin Town Hall, located at 157 Northwest Columbia Ave.

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