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Mayor's Greeting- May 2021

Mon, 06/07/2021

Mayor Pat O'Neil

Dear Island Neighbors,

It’s great to be back after our very energetic Town election campaign season!

Now it’s back to work. Our new Councilmembers, and our not-quite-so-new Mayor, will be sworn in at our regular Council meeting on June 15. We hope to be back for in-person meetings by then, so please watch the Town website for details.

I look forward to swearing in Scott Millimet, Justin Novak and Gary Visser as our new Councilmembers. I also want to express my gratitude, and ask you to do likewise, to outgoing Councilmembers Sarah Church, Chauncey Clark and Tim Reese. All of them have worked extremely hard in their terms on Council!

Now for some other info...

WHO YA GONNA CALL?: PART 1

Recall that our roads, road shoulders, and stormwater system are all the property of SC Department of Transportation. Because of that (and although it sounds like buck-passing), when you encounter problems with the conditions of roads, shoulders, stormwater drainage, and the like...involving those DOT properties...your first go-to agency should be DOT.

There is a handy link to report such problems to DOT:

http://bit.ly/scdotfix or you can go to www.scdot.org and at the bottom of the page, click on the “Maintenance work request” tab (a little picture box on the bottom right) to get to the same form.

However you get there, that official SCDOT link for requesting maintenance or repairs is really quite simple and user-friendly. In fact, our Town Director of Planning and Zoning Administrator, Joe Henderson, offers this endorsement: “You can report everything from dead tree removal to sidewalk/ road repairs. I send this link to citizens on a daily basis and the DOT is actually quite quick in getting in touch with folks.”

WHO YA GONNA CALL?: PART 2

If you see a dangerous situation that requires immediate attention by police, fire or emergency medical personnel, you of course know to call 911. However, if you become aware of a situation of concern that is NOT a time-sensitive emergency, please call the police non-emergency number: 843-743-7200.

Calls to that number, like those to the 911 emergency number, are handled by the professionals at the Charleston County Consolidated Dispatch Center. They are required to follow a protocol in taking your call, and will have several questions. However, what may not be obvious is that while they are asking follow-up questions, they may be dispatching an Island police unit silently, via their keypads. (For those of us of a certain age: No more “Car 54, Where Are You?” over the radio.) Just remember that these folks are hired to serve the entire county and thus may not know our familiar landmarks, so please try to give a street address or at least the closest intersection. They won’t know “where the pizza place used to be”.

And to answer the next question, although Sullivan’s Island and Isle of Palms used to share their own dispatch services where you could use such familiar descriptions, a stand-alone operation like that is no longer financially feasible. More important, in this age where interagency connectivity is so crucial for emergencies, that sort of operation would not ensure the level of protection that a consolidated public safety communications system affords.

HOW CAN YOU GET TIME-SENSITIVE ISLAND INFORMATION FROM THE TOWN?

For a number of years, the Town has used the Nixle notification system to alert residents to conditions that may have an immediate impact on them. It doesn’t cost you anything. Further, you can select the kinds of information you wish to be alerted about, and whether you wish to hear via text and/or email. You can sign up here: https://www.nixle.com .

You can choose among several categories of info for which you wish to get alerts: severe weather, traffic situations, water/sewer disruptions, suspicious activity, missing persons, etc. You’re in charge! Please visit the Nixle site to learn more and consider signing up.

AND OF COURSE, IT’S THAT TIME OF THE YEAR

Yep, hurricane season impends, although the storms don’t always hew to the neat boundaries of the NOAA National Hurricane Center definition of hurricane season as June 1 – November 30.  Please be sure you and your family have a plan in place should we have a serious threat...BEFORE we have a threat!

CAUSEWAY PIPE

We’re starting to become accustomed to that nearly mile-long pipe squatting on the pedestrian/bike path on the Causeway. As a reminder, it will ultimately be used to provide additional drinking water supply to Mt. Pleasant, once it is connected to the Charleston Water System (CWS) main line that runs the length of Middle Street. That line originates at the CWS plant at Ft. Johnson on James Island, travels under the harbor, surfaces on our Island and runs the length of Middle Street to supply us and to some extent, the Isle of Palms. As noted, the Causeway project will supplement the water supply for our neighbors in Mt. Pleasant. Here is more information on this interesting project (which does not cost the Town of Sullivan’s Island a dime): https://bit.ly/MtPWaterMain

To answer the question on everyone’s mind...the contractor tells us that the pipe should be pulled through by Memorial Day. Here’s hoping that’s on target!

See you around the Island!

Pat O’Neil
Mayor
843 670 9266
Twitter: @oneilpm1
oneilp@sullivansisland.sc.gov