Council considers diverting money away from Maybank project - WCIV-TV | ABC News 4 - Charleston News, Sports, Weather

Council considers diverting money away from Maybank project for Folly Road

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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) – Charleston County Council's finance committee met Monday evening to talk about possibly diverting money from a proposed project on Maybank Highway to a project to alleviate problems at Camp and Folly roads.

County officials are deciding if they should increase funding to fix the intersection of Folly and Camp roads and reduce the amount to improve Maybank Highway.

The committee says federal funding for Maybank Highway is stuck because of problems with the project's design, so members are thinking about shrinking that project and saving $15 million.

Then there would be more money to improve the area around Folly and Camp roads.

Officials said even though funding may decrease for Maybank Highway, it would still get attention.

"Tonight, we're going to ask county council to revise the scope, to change it so that we can move forward with the project in an expedited manner, which would be just for the parallel pitchfork roads, a second inbound lane onto Johns Island, and improvements with resurfacing from River Road to Main and Bohicket," said county project manager Molli Lemin.

County leaders have said reallocating the money avoids losing the money completely. They argue that changing where the money goes will help taxpayers get more bang for their buck.

The council is also considering a request from the Charleston County Sheriff's Office. It's seeking thousands of dollars in grant money.

The sheriff's office wants to council to approve its applying for a grant worth more than $30,000. Officials say the department needs to money to cut down on a 300-case backlog.

The funds would cover an equipment upgrade they say would extract and analyze evidence from cellphones and tablets. They said the money would also pay for more than 300 hours of employee overtime.

"If we get this additional machine we'll be able to run twice as many tests and cut down on the backlog significantly, hopefully wipe it out all together," said Assistant Sheriff Mitch Lucas. "We will probably be able to solve more cases with this tech as the years go by."

Just like with any technology, the new machines would have to be updated again in a few years.

The committee should have decisions on the two measures sometime Monday night.

  • Bill Burr

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