Council Hears Plea for Cemetery Street

WINNSBORO – A Winnsboro woman made an appeal to Town Council last week during their July 2 meeting asking for help to restore her Cemetery Street community.

“I want to apologize for not having got here earlier, because it’s out of control down there now,” said Betty Gunthrope, who lives in the 300 block of neighborhood. “Cemetery Street is the worst looking street in town. It is horrible down there. A majority of the properties are uninhabited, dilapidated. The lots are overgrown, they’re covered with weeds and grass and whatever.”

Gunthrope said the services provided by the Town are not in question, as the police are always on patrol and Streets and Sanitation always respond to calls for clean-ups.

“It’s bigger than that,” Gunthrope said. “It’s out of their scope.”

Gunthrope said the majority of the homes on the street belong to the McMaster family, and asked Council if they could possibly reach out to the McMasters to tear down the vacant homes and perhaps donate the occupied homes to the residents. Barring that, she asked that the Town consider taking ownership of the properties there. She also asked Council to remember Cemetery Street the next time grants are applied for.

“Let’s bring the street back into the town,” Gunthrope said. “We don’t want to be left out. We want to be a part of the community. The people down there are decent people.”

Council took no action nor made any recommendations on Gunthrope’s comments.

Council did vote unanimously to appropriate $64,310 for the painting of the outside of the 11th Street water tank. The contract went to E&D Contracting Service, Inc. of Savannah, Ga., which will guarantee the work for up to 30 years. Council had the option to expend $44,880 for a lower quality paint that was only guaranteed for 15 years, but went with Town Manager Don Wood’s recommendation for the higher quality paint.

Councilman Clyde Sanders contributed $100 from his crime prevention fund to a neighborhood crime watch meeting in Forest Hills, and Councilman Danny Miller contributed $300 each to back to a pair of school events, one held by the family of Tillie Armstrong and one by Betty Young, in the Zion Hill community.

Following a brief executive session, Council recommended to pass along to the Planning and Zoning Commission a review of fees paid by vendors at Winnsboro’s new farmers market. The review should take place within the next 30 days, according to Councilman Jackie Wilkes’ motion.

Wood said the Town’s current ordinances do not encompass farmers markets and that some type of fee will have to be devised to cover vendors there.

“We want to find something that’s compatible with what other communities have done,” Mayor Roger Gaddy said.

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