Barnwell begins search for new police chief

First Byline: 
David Purtell - Staff Writer

Barnwell City Council received some sad news during its regular meeting, Jan. 6.
Barnwell Police Chief Todd Gantt announced he will be retiring at the end of February.
"I want to say it's been a great run," Gantt told council. He thanked everyone, especially his fellow officers, for all the support they've given him over the years.
Gantt joined the department in 1998 and became chief in 2003. In all, he has spent 31 years in law enforcement.
Gantt said he feels it's the right time for him to step down.
Mayor Edward Lemon thanked Gantt for his many years of service and told him he will be missed.
The search for a new chief has started. City Administrator John Zawacki said the city will look inside and outside the Police Department for a replacement.
In other business:
Zawacki said the city received the environmental report for the Hagood Avenue water project. He said he reviewed and sent it back to the Lower Savannah Council of Governments, who will send it to the state Department of Commerce so the grant funds for the project can be released.
Zawacki said he does not know exactly when work will begin on the project, which will replace aging water lines and add fire hydrants to the eastern part of Hagood Avenue and some side streets.
Zawacki also said the town received a $5,000 grant from Palmetto Pride - a state organization focused on keeping communities across the state clean. He said the money will be used to buy permanent trash receptacles for Lemon Park.
Fire Chief Tony Dicks said his department has been awarded a $2,200 grant from the South Carolina Forestry Commission. He said the money will be used to buy portable radios.