Finding Common Ground

New Administrator Has Record of Uniting County, Town

WINNSBORO (June 2, 2016) – When County Council officially voted last week on their new County Administrator, they selected Jason C. Taylor from a list of five candidates from across the state.

Taylor has been the Town Administrator for Ridgeland since 2002, where he has overseen a staff of 52 employees and a budget of $8 million. During his tenure, Taylor told The Voice last week, he has worked closely with the Jasper County government – a spirit of unity he said he hopes to bring with him to Fairfield County, which has a history of divisiveness between County and municipality.

“It was the same way here for a long time, too,” Taylor said. “It’s just a matter of reaching out and finding common goals and knowing what is good for Winnsboro is also good for the County.

“I’ve worked closely with Jasper County,” Taylor said. “We have a great group of elected officials at the County and the Town, and they’ve all been great. We’ve worked hand-in-hand with our County.”

Taylor’s resume, obtained by The Voice from the County through a Freedom of Information Act request, includes a long list of accomplishments over his 14 years in Ridgeland, not the least of which is partnering with Jasper County for the renovation of the 15,000-square-foot Jasper County Farmers Market building, the renovation of Town Hall and the construction of Tuten Park. The latter, a walking trail project, won the 2010 Municipal Association Award for Economic Development.

Taylor, who earned his Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of South Carolina, served as the Executive Director of the Saluda County Economic Development and Planning Office from 1998-2002, and worked for the Lexington County Department of Social Services from 1990 – 1998.

Taylor and his family have lived in Beaufort for the last 14 years, but he is originally from the Lexington area and his parents still live in the Prosperity area.

“It will be like coming home,” Taylor said.

According to additional documents obtained by The Voice through a Freedom of Information Act request, Taylor was picked over the current Director of Administrative Services and Special Assistant to the Mayor for the Town of Summerville, the Darlington County Administrator, Darlington’s City Manager and the Assistant to the County Administrator of Greenville County.

“We had an interesting group – on paper,” County Council Chairwoman Carolyn Robinson said. “He (Taylor) did an excellent job with his interview.”

Taylor singed a three-year deal with Fairfield County worth $120,000 a year. He begins his term on June 6.