Columbia Star

Council extends emergency mask ordinance

Richland County Council met March 1. County Council members present were: Chair Overture Walker (District Eight), Vice Chair Jesica Mackey (District Nine), council members Bill Malinowski (District One), Derrek Pugh (District Two), Yvonne McBride (District Three), Paul Livingston (District Four), Joe Walker III (District Six), Gretchen Barron (District Seven), Cheryl English (District Ten), and Chakisse Newton (District Eleven).

County Administrator Leonardo Brown reported to council the information provided by S.C. DHEC shows the COVID-19 incidence rate for current reporting period is in the high tier for confirmed cases.

Brown also stated as an employer, the county must follow the CDC guidelines. OSHA, the CDC, and SCDHEC all recommend wearing a mask in public indoor settings in areas of substantial or high transmission as guidance for employers to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace. Richland County is still considered an area of high transmission.

The council voted to extend the Emergency Mask Ordinance Requiring Face Masks for 60 days.

Council approved the following consent items on the agenda:

•Purchase of the Edgewood Library Branch property (2101-13 Oak Street) (County Attorney’s Office);

•Road closure petition (Pointe Grand Columbia, LLC v. SCDOT, RC, DPX Holdings, LLC 2021-CP-40-06246) to close Research Court for which Richland County currently provides maintenance;

•Award contract for Body Removal Services

•Business Service Center–Business License Tax Rate Schedule Rebalance (Community Planning & Development);

•Approval to award contract for two fire station roofs (Operational Services);

•Hopkins Utilities Office–sewer connection (Utilities);

•Approval of Class 2 Solid Waste Disposal Contract Amendment (Department of Public Works– Solid Waste & Recycling Division).

Council approved the recommendation from the Coronavirus Ad Hoc Committee for “the allocation of $687,949.00 in American Rescue Fund and other applicable federal grant funding sources to purchase comprehensive grant management software to facilitate the process of distributing, tracking, and processing both grant funds received and distributed.”

Council approved the recommendation from the Coronavirus Ad Hoc Committee for “an extension of the existing agreement with TetraTech to administer the distribution of any reallocated Emergency Rental Assistance 1 funds.”

The following Hospitality Tax allocations were approved by the council: (FY22– District 2 Hospitality Tax Allocations) Auntie Karen Foundation $5,000, (FY 22–District 7 Hospitality Tax Allocations) 1. Columbia City Ballet: Motown—$5,000, Auntie Karen Foundation: 18th Annual Legends Concert— $8,000, (FY 22–District 9 Hospitality Tax Allocations) Auntie Karen Foundation: 18th Annual Legends Concert— $5,000, (FY22- District 11 Hospitality Tax Allocations) Auntie Karen Foundation— $5,000.

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