Monthly Archives: July 2023

‘Stuck with the bill’

City, county seek $37K to recoup Trump rally costs

By Riley Morningstar
Courtesy The Journal

PICKENS — Two government entities are on track to receive a combined $40,000 in tax reimbursements to cover expenses related to former President Donald Trump’s campaign stop in Pickens earlier this month.

A motion to approve the reimbursements at the Pickens County Council Committee of the Whole meeting last week was not unanimous, as the lone Democrat on the body voted against the requests supported by her five Republican counterparts in awarding accommodations tax (ATAX) money to the county and city of Pickens. ATAX money is generated from tourism events, which are generally collected when someone stays in a hotel or spends money at a restaurant.

Councilman Alex Saitta made the initial motion to award $7,000 to the city and $30,000 to the county for police and

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County attorney: No contract, no reimbursement

By Riley Morningstar
Courtesy The Journal

PICKENS — The legal advisor to Pickens County Council published a legal memo one day before former President Donald Trump visited the county saying that without a contract, the local government shouldn’t expect a reimbursement.

The 20-page memo dated June 30 obtained by The Journal was shared with council by Les Hendricks of the Hendricks Firm in Easley to address one issue.

“Can Pickens County request reimbursement of expenditures for the city of Pickens’ Independence Day Spectacular wherein former President Trump has been invited to speak at a

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A new begining

Adam Lambert sworn in as Pickens County’s first Master-in-Equity

PICKENS — In a historic ceremony July 18 at the Pickens County Courthouse, Judge Adam B. Lambert was sworn in as the first Master-in-Equity for Pickens County.

The swearing-in marked the beginning of a new division of the judiciary for Pickens County. The equity court is part of the state circuit court and generally involves foreclosures, partitions and similar matters. Masters are appointed by the governor, with the advice and consent of the

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$12.5M bonds set to help fund Highway 183 fix

By Jason Evans
Staff Reporter

COUNTY — The issuance of general obligation bonds not to exceed $12.75 million will pay to upgrade S.C. Highway 183, a project area officials have been trying to fund for years.

Pickens County Council members discussed the project during their July 10 meeting, before first reading of an ordinance providing for the issuance of the bond.

County administrator Ken Roper said he wanted to discuss “the overall strategy

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Man heading to federal prison for abuse material

By Jason Evans
Staff Reporter

GREENVILLE — A Pickens man was sentenced Monday after pleading guilty to possession of child sexual abuse material.

Matthew Leon Arotin, 63, was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison, according to a release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, District of South Carolina.

Arotin was also ordered to pay $68,000 in restitution to the victims whose images he

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Special city council election scheduled

PICKENS — A special election to fill the seat of a Pickens City Councilman who resigned earlier this month has officially been placed on the calendary.

In a letter to the mayor and other city council members dated July 4, Patrick Lark resigned the seat he’d held since 2010.

The Pickens County Board of Voter Registrations and Elections announced last week that the special election to fill the unexpired city council

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Tournament Time


EASLEY — Coming off a rousing return to Easley last summer after a two-year COVID-19 layoff, the Senior League World Series will be returning to Pickens County this weekend.

The tournament, which pits the best 13-16-year-old baseball players from around the world against each other, will feature six international teams and six U.S. teams and will kick off this Saturday, July 29, at the J.B. “Red” Owens Complex and run through Aug. 5.

As of press time Tuesday, the international division’s qualifiers had all been chosen, while all United States division teams remained in qualifier play.

The first team selected for the tournament was host S.C. District 1. The team, which is comprised of 16 of the area’s best young players, is looking to build upon its 2-2 finish in the 2022 tournament. District 1 will play the winner of the Central regional at 7:30 p.m. on opening night.

S.C. District 1 is set to be represented by Greyson Austin (Wren), Ayden Beeco (Easley), Eli Bledsoe (Liberty), Ayden Clay (Pendleton), Landon Fowler (Powdersville), Connor Johnson (Wren), Blane Jordan (Powdersville), Tobie Lowe (Walhalla), Joey McGovern (Seneca), Jasean Perry (Daniel), Bolton Pritchard (Wren), Aedan Queen (Pendleton), Kade Scruggs (Pendleton), Jonathan Sonderfan (Easley), Trey Sutton (Easley) and Austin Vinson (Wren). Easley High School’s Cooper Sears and Banks Gambrell are listed as alternates for District 1.

Based in Ryde, Australia, the Ryde Hawks were the first team to qualify on the international side following their win in the Australian regional on May 12. The Hawks went 5-0 in regional play and defeated the Eastern Phantoms 6-4 to advance to the SLWS.

The next team to qualify was Matamoros from Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico. One of two teams from Mexico competing in the regional, Matamoros went unbeaten over the course of the Latin American tournament and beat their country mates from Guadalupe Linda Vista 6-5 in the championship.

In the Caribbean region, Pabao Little League, representing Willemstad, Curacao, earned their spot in the Senior League series by going a perfect 8-0 in regional play. Just like the Latin American champions, Radamés López found themselves in battle of compatriots, facing off with fellow Curacaons, Pariba Little League in the championship.

In early July, Kennemerland Little League, of Haarlem, Netherlands, pulled through in the Europe-Africa regional, going 4-1 on its way to Easley. Facing off with South Czech Republic Little League of the Czech Republic in the finals, Lazio Little League emerged victorious, 7-2.

In the final completed international regional, the East Nepean Little League, of Ottawa, Ontario, upset the previously unbeaten Diamond Baseball Little League team 3-2 in the regional championship to punch its ticket to Easley with a final record of 4-3.

As of press time, there was no information available on the final international regional in the Asia-Pacific region.

Stateside, there was still plenty of baseball to be played at press time Tuesday, with East regional champion Cherry Hill Atlantic Little League, of Cherry Hill, N.J., having won the lone completed U.S. regional.

Sixteen teams were still vying for the top spots in the Central, Southeast, Southwest and West regionals, which were set to be determined by Wednesday at the latest, making for a short preparation time for the trip to Easley.

The day before the series begins on Friday, July 28, the city will host a Fan Fest downtown, including a parade of the teams and a concert with a performance by Ansley Burns. The parade will start at 6:30 p.m.

SLWS games will begin Saturday, July 30, opening up with the Southwest regional champion taking on the West regional champion before finishing the night with Pickens County’s own S.C. District 1 team taking on the Central regional champions.

For more about the Senior League World Series in Easley, visit

Easley native serves aboard future Navy warship

MAYPORT, Fla. – Petty Officer 1st Class Marcus Burroughs, a native of Easley, South Carolina, serves aboard Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Marinette, in Mayport, Florida.

PCU is a designation used by the U.S. Navy to describe crews aboard vessels under construction prior to official commissioning.

Burroughs graduated from Easley High School in 1999 and earned an electrical engineering

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‘Hee Haw’ coming to Hagood Center

PICKENS — The Hagood Community Center proudly presents an all new presentation of our favorite comedy/musical show, HEE HAW.

There is a an all-new cast, some new songs, and plenty of new jokes that will send you home with a smile on your face. Showings are set for August 26, at 4 p.m. and another at 7 p.m.

There should be a full house for both presentations so get your tickets early at the center MWF from 8:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. Tickets are $7 each and are limited to auditorium capacity. All proceeds benefit the Hagood Community Center.

Community Calendar 7-26-23

• Upcountry Quilters meet 4th Tuesdays

Upcountry Quilters Guild has set meeting times on the fourth Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. at Pickens Presbyterian Church, 311 W. Main St., Pickens, SC 29671. All visitors are welcome.
For more information, visit

• Hagood-Mauldin House offers tours

The historic Hagood-Mauldin House, located at 104 N Lewis St. at Legacy Square in Pickens, is now offering free tours to the public. The

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