Lexington County

West Columbia City Council approves resolution to allow police chief to campaign for sheriff

West Columbia Police Chief Dennis Tyndall will be allowed to campaign for Lexington County Sheriff while retaining his current role. West Columbia Council members at Tuesday’s meeting (photo by Allen Wallace) City Council voted 8-1 Tuesday to approve a resolution granting the chief that permission. Tyndall made the request in accordance with city policy, stating his intention to run for…

Update: Metts pleads not guilty, released on $100,000 bond; pretrial conference scheduled

Suspended Lexington County Sheriff James Metts is free on a $100,000 bond after pleading not guilty to charges of corruption in office and accepting bribes. Suspended Lexington County Sheriff James Metts leaves court Tuesday. (photo by Allen Wallace) Metts appeared in federal court for an arraignment Tuesday. He waived the formal reading of the charges against him. Prosecutors asked for…

Local high schoolers chosen for Partners Program internship at Lexington Medical

The first session of this year’s Partners Program at Lexington Medical Center, a summer internship for future medical professionals, just completed with about 30 of the selected students. (photo provided) Aspiring medical professionals from around the Midlands are getting a firsthand look at how local healthcare works this summer. Lexington Medical Center has announced the newest class of the Partners…

3 finalists selected for Lexington School District Two superintendent job

One day after sitting down with the last of the semi-finalists, Lexington Two school board members announced their top three picks for district’s next superintendent. Board members interviewed nine semi-finalists Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. They then selected three to introduce to the public and district staff as they consider each one to replace Dr. Venus Holland, who is retiring. The…

Lexington School District Two passes balanced budget, updated supplement schedule for coaches

Board members for Lexington School District Two on Thursday unanimously passed a balanced budget for the coming school year. They approved more funding for district coaches in addition to operational costs. The board asked district staff in May to put together two options to reward the countless coaches in Lexington Two. Administrators recommended a supplement plan that aligns Lexington Two’s…

Lexington County Council begins process to put repeal of Sunday alcohol sales ban on ballot

Lexington County residents likely will have another big issue to vote on at the polls this November. County Council members gave first reading approval Wednesday to an ordinance placing a repeal of Sunday alcohol sales limits on the ballot. If passed by voters, the referendum would eliminate restrictions on stores and allow them to sell beer and wine on Sunday…

Old Wire Road bridge near West Columbia to close for repairs

Drivers who cross the bridge on Old Wire Road near West Columbia in Lexington County will need an alternate route for about two months beginning in July. The South Carolina Department of Transportation will close the bridge for repairs July 15. The work is expected to take about eight weeks and includes raising the bridge. Inclement weather could cause the…

City of Cayce, Rohdie Group break ground on apartment complex

City of Cayce council members and Rohdie Group officials break ground on new apartments in Cayce. (photo by Rachel Ham) Hundreds of local residents will call a brand-new apartment complex home after the project reaches completion next year. Cayce city officials and members of the Rohdie Group broke ground Tuesday on the 299-unit project. Otarre Pointe Apartments is just off…

Ned Tolar nabs Lexington County Council seat in Republican primary runoff

Two weeks after one incumbent was defeated in the race for Lexington County Council’s open seats, another lost out in the Republican primary runoff. Ned Tolar defeated incumbent Republican Bill Banning in District 8 with 55 percent of the vote. According to unofficial results Tuesday from Lexington County, Tolar received 1,084 votes to Banning’s 874. District 8 required a runoff…

Investigators seize items related to Metts case from Lexington County Sheriff’s Department

Agents of the FBI, South Carolina State Law Enforcement Division and Department of Homeland Security searched two rooms Friday at the Lexington County Sheriff’s Department, seizing items and documents related to the charges of bribery and corruption in office against former Sheriff James Metts. Former Lexington County Sheriff James Metts (file photo) The agents executed a warrant issued Thursday by…

Lexington-Richland Five School Board adopts 2014-15 budget with slight millage increase

Taxpayers living in the areas served by Lexington-Richland School District Five will see a slight increase in their taxes after the school board adopted the 2014-15 budget Monday. Board members were advised to implement a millage increase to cover a large projected deficit. Chief Finance Officer Len Richardson said the district faced a $2.2 million shortfall because of decreased funding…

Lexington Two School Board to interview slate of semi-finalists for superintendent job

The Lexington Two School Board will meet four times this week to prepare for the coming school year. The members’ objectives will be to finalize the 2014-15 budget and continue the process of selecting the district’s next superintendent. Superintendent Venus Holland announced her retirement in January, and the school board began working with the South Carolina School Boards Association shortly…

Chapin Town Council approves direct deposit for payroll, contract for utility attorney

Chapin Town Council members voted Wednesday night to approve a new contract that includes back pay for the town utility attorney, and they took the first step toward payroll direct deposit for town employees. Utility attorney David Knight agreed to drop a lawsuit against Mayor Skip Wilson once the new contract was approved. Knight will be paid $1,500 per month…

Lewis McCarty takes oath of office as Lexington County sheriff

For the first time since 1972, Lexington County has a sheriff other than James Metts. Lexington County Sheriff Lewis McCarty (photo provided) Lewis McCarty was sworn in as sheriff Wednesday at the county courthouse. He was appointed by Gov. Nikki Haley to serve as interim sheriff after Metts was indicted on corruption and bribery charges Tuesday. McCarty declined to speak…

Cayce City Council approves new hospitality tax, budget

Cayce City Council members Wednesday unanimously approved a new 2 percent tax on sales of prepared meals and beverages in city establishments. Cayce City Council members and City Manager Rebecca Vance (right) at Wednesday’s meeting (photo by Allen Wallace) The new hospitality tax is expected to generate an estimated $644,000 per year based on existing restaurants. The money will be…

Lexington County residents speak out on both sides of Penny for Progress at council meeting

Second reading of the ordinance to place the Penny for Progress resolution on the November ballot was before Lexington County Council on Tuesday. After the vote, and before the third and final reading takes place, residents spoke for and against the proposed penny sales tax. The State Budget and Control Board estimates the tax will generate $290 million over the…

Lexington County Sheriff James Metts indicted on federal corruption charges, suspended from office

South Carolina’s State Grand Jury on Tuesday indicted Lexington County Sheriff James Metts on charges of corruption and accepting bribes. Gov. Nikki Haley issued an executive order late Tuesday afternoon suspending Metts from office immediately and appointed Alfred Lewis McCarty as interim sheriff. Lexington County Council Chairman Johnny Jeffcoat said McCarty will be sworn in Wednesday and that a special election…

Pelion Middle School principal announces retirement

Dr. Sandy Jowers is retiring from Pelion Middle after nearly a decade as the school’s principal. (photo provided) Lexington School District One administrators will be looking for a new principal this summer for one of the district’s middle schools. Dr. Sandra Jowers, principal at Pelion Middle, has announced her retirement effective June 30. She has taught in three of the…