Civic-minded locals are stepping up to save the crime and drug committee, which was in danger of disbanding because of poor attendance.
The effort to reinvigorate the committee was spearheaded by Councilman Curtis Leak, who reported to council last year that attendance at the meetings had been poor and that something had to be done for it to continue to exist.
“The committee is an asset to the community,” Leak said.
Leak recently sought to gauge the interest of Scotland County’s leaders, asking that the board of commissioners also discuss whether the committee should continue.
Made up of area residents as well as representatives of local law enforcement and representatives of city and county government, the committee is tasked with coordinating law enforcement’s efforts to curb crime by encouraging teamwork with citizens.
Response to Leak’s call-to-arms has been encouraging, he said.
The most recent applicant to the committee is community leader Mary Evans.
“She will help get the word out in the community about (what the committee is working on),” Leak said, praising her credentials and calling Evans a valuable addition to the committee. “Her work at the radio station will help.”
Citing her ability to coordinate community activities, act as a spokesperson for the group and her role as an activist in Scotland County, Evans first applied to the committee last year when its fate was still up in the air.
Three of the city’s eight appointees to the committee have already expressed an interest in continuing to serve, according to city officials.
Evans’ application to the committee will be considered at tonight’s meeting of the city council.
Also during tonight’s meeting, city council will vote to finalize the date for advertising tax liens. Prior to the meeting there was approximately $300,104.36 in outstanding taxes.
Tax collector Diana Chavis has requested that the city advertise the outstanding taxes during the week of March 4-8.
“We typically try to do it a week before the county advertises theirs,” said Cindy Carpenter, city finance officer.
If the city approves the conditional use permit of the entertainment professionals at Michael’s Amusements, Inc. the carnival will be returning this year to the lot at 900 US 15-401 Bypass.
According to city officials, the same group has organized a carnival at the site each of the last six years without incident.
Planning Director Brandi Deese reported to council that the planning committee voted unanimously to recommend the conditional use request at their January 15 meeting.
In his request to the city, Robert E. Lee of Michael’s Amusements said that the company will hire local off-duty law enforcement workers to provide security while the carnival is operating in Laurinburg.
If approved, the carnival would roll into town on April 4 and stay through April 14 of this year.
The city will hold a required public hearing at the council meeting tonight.
The Laurinburg City Council will meet tonight at 7 p.m. at the Municipal Building on West Church Street.