Manning City Council receives comprehensive plan

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Manning City Council received a draft of the plan for goals for the city from Susan Landfried, a planner for Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments, on Monday at its meeting.

Landfried presented an overview of the comprehensive plan to council, telling members the plan has taken about nine months to prepare and is meant to document public goals for Manning in the next 10 years. Each municipality and county is required by the state to adopt a comprehensive plan every 10 years.

Planners began by doing a current conditions inventory, gathering data and seeking social input, Landfried said.

"Our goal was to go out in the community instead of having them come to us," she said.

She said several major goals were identified in the plan, including maintaining a vibrant downtown, providing service opportunities and amenities for all, creating a healthy and safe community and expanding job opportunities consistent with a stable and efficient pattern of growth.

Landfried said one difficulty often mentioned by residents interviewed for the plan was a lack of public transportation.

"We heard consistently there is no transportation to jobs or even to the grocery store," she said.

According to City Administrator Scott Tanner, the plan sets a goal of assessing the area's transportation needs and identifying gaps but does not call for any specific actions.

Landfried said the plan does not include any major land-use changes.

Tanner said the council must have at least two readings of the comprehensive plan to adopt it, and after its presentation the first reading was approved. All council members received a copy of the plan, and they were urged to study it before the plan is voted on again, most likely at the monthly council meeting in May.

In other action, council overruled a vote by the Clarendon County Planning Commission concerning a fence around the sally port, or protected entryway, at the Althea Gibson Center on Commerce Street. Clarendon County is remodeling the center to be the home of the S.C. Department of Social Services; S.C. Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services; and the county coroner.

According to Clarendon County Administrator David Epperson, the planning commission had insisted on an enclosed sally port for the coroner's office instead of only fencing. The sally port is where the coroner's office will be bringing bodies, he said.

"We have been multiple times to the planning commission," Epperson said. "We felt reasonable plans had been proposed. It would be $32,000 to enclose the sally port."

Epperson asked council to approve an 8-foot vinyl fence option instead, which council approved.