Former Pickens mayor Shehan airs concerns to county council

By Ben Robinson
Staff Reporter

COUNTY — Former Pickens mayor Ted Shehan had an opportunity to address Pickens County Council during the public input session of its meeting Monay night to share his concern about the county’s plan to take over fire protection duties currently assigned to cities.

In Pickens, the city’s fee to taxpayers has been $50 per home, the lowest in Pickens County, except for Rocky Bottom, which charges $40 annually. Under the county’s new plan, Pickens city residents will pay $100 annually.

The county has built three new fire stations. Those stations will be unmanned most days.

Shehan said the residents in these areas could be covered by the city fire department as long as the homes fall within a two-mile radius of the city station.

The City of Pickens has an ISO rating of 4.

“What the county needs to do is sit down with the city of Pickens and work out what is best for the taxpayers,” Shehan said.

Pree Hamilton also addressed council, speaking in support of the Pickens County Humane Society.

Hamilton praised new director Samantha Gambrell for making the most of a bad situation.

Gambrell has three employees including herself, yet the shelter manages to stay open six days a week.

What she really needs is a new facility, Hamilton said. $35,000 has been set aside in the new budget for new kennels.

Hamilton reported that the society’s board meets four times a year, which is not nearly enough to address the shelter’s needs. Hamilton suggested the board should meet at least monthly.

“You’ve got people there now who really care,” Hamilton said. “There’s a lot of animals in Pickens County. People need to step up to the plate and give to this.”

The county also recognized paramedics Michael Wade, T.J. Galloway and Michelle Adams for excellence in their jobs.

Council chair Neil Smith praised Missionary Baptist Church for celebrating its 150th birthday.

“It’s been around longer than Pickens County has,” Smith said.