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Council to apply for loans for wastewater treatment plant

Posted on Wednesday, May 17th, 2017 at 12:04 pm. Posted to Community.

The Chapin Town Council Tuesday heard an update from Utilities Director Andy Metts on a plan from funding engineering and construction of a new waste water treatment plan estimated to cost $14.5 million over 30 years.

Council approved a resolution to apply to the State Revolving Fund for a $10.5 million bond issue for 30 years at 1.9 percent to construct concrete and steel, and  a $1.45 million bond issue for 20 years at 1.9 percent to construct mechanicals and electricals.  Total debt service on the bond issues over the first 20 years is projected to be $548,880 per year.   After 20 years the debt service rate rises to $2.4 percent, and amounts to $472,524 over the last 10 years of the loan. The Town of Chapin would be asked to contribute $1,981,558 million, with $1 million to be used for equipment purchase.

The financial plan as presented by Metts assumes tap fees of $3,900 each through 2018; $4,200 through 2022, $4,500 through 2027, with a $300 increase every five years thereafter.  The initial monthly user fee rate would be $35, with a $5 increase in 2018.   Monthly user fee rate increases would be 1.5 percent per year.

Details of the plan are outlined by Metts in the attached vide0


The new plant can serve 8,000 customers. Metts projects that the town will add an average of 120 new taps each year over 30 years.

In other business, Metts reported on the Murray Lindler Road/Old Lexington Highway Roundabout.  SCDOT continues their review of the proposed utility relocation plan as presented by the Utility Department staff.  To date, the DOT project engineer has not responded to several calls from Town staff nor provided any written communication.  The utility relocation is at a standstill until Chapin receives further communication from DOT.

Metts reported resolution of another legal issue. A few years ago, a Town-owned sewer pump station was mistakenly sold by Lexington County at a delinquent tax sale. Subsequent court action determined that the Town should retain ownership of the pump station.  This court action was appealed and on April 19, 2017, the appeals court has affirmed the grant of summary judgment. This means the Town has won the case unless there is a petition filed with the Supreme Court.

Town Council voted to create a new RS-3 zoning District and to re-zone all of Revelstone Subdivision from RG to RS-3.

Council voted to re-zone property at 161 Columbia Avenue (across Lexington Avenue from Wells Fargo Bank) from RS-1 (Residential) to General Commercial.

Council proclaimed May 14-20 as “Food Allergy Awareness Week” and resolved to commend Chapin’s American Legion Post 193 for their support of We Care, the Community Food Bank.

Gerald Meetze and Eagle Scout Jake Powers reported on recently completed welcome sign projects, and on plans for redesign of the Town Square at a cost estimated at $54,000.  The Arbor Day committee homes to fund the proposed improvements through grants and donations, and is requesting contributions from the town in next year’s budget.

Council also approved a contract to lease a town-owned house and property (formerly the Cholie Slice residence) for a base fee of $850 per month.

After executive session, council voted to offer the McNair Law Firm a contract for legal services for the Waste Water Treatment Plant Project.



Public Meeting on Proposed Widening of I-26

Posted on Wednesday, May 17th, 2017 at 9:12 am. Posted to Community.


The South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) has scheduled a public information meeting for the proposed widening of Interstate 26 in the Midlands area of the state.  The proposed interstate widening would be for approximately 16 miles and would extend from approximately 1.6 miles west of the SC 202 (Exit 85) interchange to approximately 0.4 miles west of the  US 176 (Exit 101) interchange in Lexington, Richland, and Newberry counties.

The meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 23, 2017, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Chapin High School, 300 Columbia Ave., Chapin. The meeting will have a drop in format with displays for viewing, informational handouts and comment forms. Project information, including meeting materials and comment forms, will also be available on the SCDOT website http://www.dot.state.sc.us/inside/i26_wide_85-101/i26_85-101.aspx.

Proposed road improvements would include increasing interstate capacity, improving interchanges and exit ramps, and replacing overpass bridges. The purpose for this highway widening effort is to increase vehicle capacity, improve safety and upgrade to current design standards.

For more information, the public may contact SCDOT Program Manager Michael Hood at (803) 737-3485.

Agenda Chapin Town Council Tuesday May 16

Posted on Saturday, May 13th, 2017 at 9:51 am. Posted to Community.


The Chapin Town Council will hold Public Hearings on Tuesday, May 16, 2017 at 5:45 p.m. and its Regular Town Council Meeting at 6:00 p.m. (or upon the completion of the Public Hearings) in the Council Chambers at Town Hall (157 NW Columbia Avenue, Chapin, SC 29036).



Posted on Tuesday, February 28th, 2017 at 5:51 am. Posted to Community.
  • The Caines Family, Genuine Folk Artists

    By Tom Poland, a Southern Writer (Published by Chapin Media Group with permission of the author)

    As I turned off Highway 17 onto West Virginia Road, snowy mountains and the blue-green Kanawha River came to mind, but neither snow nor mountains waited in Carolina Rice Country. Legendary folk artists waited—The Caines Boys. Now right here let’s get clear on names. The Caines Brothers are dead and gone. The Caines Boys, Jerry and Roy, live on. The first time I heard of Caines decoys, it was a reference to the Caines Brothers who came to fame in Georgetown in the first half of the last century. They worked as gunners, made moonshine, and toiled as watermen. Built boats. Whatever put bread on the table.1Blue Ribbon Winner

    The Caines Boys’ granddad and uncles were early rising weather-beaten outdoorsmen and they knew the land here like the back of their hand, as they should. Their ancestors came here in 1735 and owned a lot of land until “carpetbaggers came in” as Jerry put it. So, the Caines have lived here nigh 300 years in the vicinity of a point of land known as the Waccamaw Neck. Think of this region and you think of water: Winyah Bay and rivers, the Waccamaw, Sampit, Great Pee Dee, and Black, Indian names all, ’cept for the Black. Indians called it Wee Nee, “Dark Water.” Looked like black coffee to settlers, thus Black stuck.

    Far as duck hunting goes, in the early 1900s if a man wanted to draw ducks in, he made his o2Jerry Caines Bestwn decoys or someone made ’em for him. Weren’t any plastic, store-bought decoys back then. The Caines Brothers answered the call, turning blocks of gum tupelo into snaky-necked mallards. They got really good at it. Today, Caines Brothers descendants, Jerry and Roy, carry on the family tradition of carving decoys. (Sportsman Alert: They don’t carve gunning decoys; they carve decorative decoys for shows and collectors.)

    Just off West Virginia Road, that road resurrecting mountain memories, I spent two afternoons with the Caines Boys February 9 and 10 talking about the path that led them to their grandfather’s calling. Before carving, Jerry and Roy Caines worked the coastline as shrimpers. “We’re married to the sea,” said Jerry. Neither man has ever been married and that’s fine with them. They’re independent souls. “We’ve always been self employed,” said Jer3Roy Cainesry, reminding me of something my granddad used to say. “If you can make money for the man, you can make it for yourself.” My granddad was born about the same time the Caines Brothers were, at the turn of the last century, an era producing self-reliant, wood-and-water-savvy men.

    As for the Caines Boys’ dad, he worked the salt. He was a commercial fisherman, no carving for him. He taught his boys to treat fish like they’d treat themselves. Things like how to hold a fish without grabbing its gills and bloodying it up. Folks preferred buying their cleaner, healthier fish as a result.

    The Caines Boys fished and shrimped but things they do change, and shrimping’s no exception. Now a lot of folks far removed from the coast don’t know just how much shrimping has changed. Shrimpers today have to compete with imported shrimp, and it isn’t easy. That and onerous regulations make shrimping a losing deal nowadays. The Caines Boys never crabbed but they did some shad fishing and fished for sturgeon and caviar. Regulations made those pursuits difficult too, so when the pickings got slim, when The Little Shrimper, the Caines Boy’s boat, met its demise, 1Six Decoysrot, in their back yard, a local hardware store owner made a suggestion. “Why don’t you carve decoys like your granddad did?”

    They started carving in 2005. “We both work on decoys,” said Roy. “I do the rough cut and Jerry does the art.” It took six months to make their first decoy. Tupelo gum is the preferred wood although Jerry said they’ve carved some from cedar. They get cured tupelo wood from a man who makes serving trays. They use Dremel tools. The big challenges when carving a decoy are getting the tail feathers and wing positions right. Getting a duck anatomically correct is important too. The Caines Boys use a Sabre Detail Master IV to burn in fine details. They carve heads separately. “It’s so hard to carve an entire duck from one block of wood,” said Jerry. “It takes too much wood,” adds Roy. They make oversized decoys like their granddad did unless it is for a show. The decoys they make for shows are realistic sizes and highly detailed. “Every blue ribbon we’ve w1Wood Duck Detailson was justified,” said Jerry.

  • The Caines Boys sell their decoys for $2,000 and up. Their miniature wood ducks are very popular and go for $350. A fellow familiar with shows and auctions gave the Caines Boys some advice. “I don’t know what your prices are and I don’t care, but when you sell your decoys triple the price.”

    The Caines Boys’ granddad, Hucks Caines, didn’t sell decoys back in his day. He traded them for groceries. Out of some 500 decoys carved only 50 remain today, hence their value. A Hucks Caines snaky-necked mallard and its mate set a record when they went for $258,000 at an auction.

    The Caines Boys don’t know what tools their granddad used but said it took him a week to carve a decoy. He was famous for his snaky-necked decoys, with their neck elongated and flexed into an S shape. Jerry thinks his granddad carved snaky-neck decoys because they assume that position briefly when taking off.

    And take off is what Caines Brothers’ decoys did. Take off in the sense of popularity among collectors. They possess a provenance tracing back to two names synonymous over in rice country—Caines and Baruch. Investor Bernard M. Baruch, who established Hobcaw Barony, a 16,000-acre estate, hired the Caines Brothers to serve as hunting guides and to run off poachers. He owned a lot of the Caines Brothers’ decoys. Most had “BMB” on the bottom. Millionaires came to Hobcaw to hobnob and shoot ducks over those decoys but time and change marched on. The Baruchs died and somehow Caines Brothers’ decoys ended up all over the place. If you stumble across one of their old decoys, do nothing to it. An old decoy is like an old coin, clean it and you lessen its value, but the truth is there’s little chance of coming across a Caines Brother’s decoy. If you want a rice country heirloom, and you can see here how beautiful they are, contact the Caines Boys.

    One more thing. Back on a cold winter day when the woodpile was low, the Caines Boys’ granddad would toss a few decoys into the stove. If only he could have seen the future. A small fortune, a princely sum, went up in smoke. And something else. Art. What would someday be known as folk art.

    Visit my website at www.tompoland.net

    Email me at tompol@earthlink.net

    Photos by Tom Poland

    1. Blue Ribbon Winner
    2. Jerry Caine’s Best
    3. Roy Caine
    4. Six Decoys
    5. Wood Duck


    Tom Poland is the author of twelve books and more than 1,000 magazine features. A Southern writer, his work has appeared in magazines throughout the South. The University of South Carolina Press released his book, Georgialina, A Southland As We Knew It, in November 2015 and his and Robert Clark’s Reflections Of South Carolina, Vol. II in 2014. The History Press of Charleston published Classic Carolina Road Trips From Columbia in 2014. He writes a weekly column for newspapers in Georgia and South Carolina about the South, its people, traditions, lifestyle, and changing culture and speaks often to groups across South Carolina and Georgia, “Georgialina.”



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