News briefs for January 12th-19th

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Council members are sworn in at ceremony 

Reelected and newly-elected members of Beaufort County Council were sworn in recently by Marvin H. Dukes, III, Beaufort County master-in-equity.

County council members Michael E. Covert (District 7) and York Glover Sr. (District 3) took their oaths of office for the first time. Gerald Dawson (District 1) and Brian E. Flewelling (District 5) reaffirmed their oaths.

Paul Sommerville (District 2), a Lady’s Island resident was reelected as Beaufort County Council chairman for a two-year term. Sommerville was nominated by Brian Flewelling.

“Sommerville is a steadfast advocate for the people of his district and for the entire county,” said Flewelling during his nomination for Sommerville. “We’ve grown as a county under his leadership and he’s done an admirable job.”

Sun City resident Jerry Stewart (District 6) was reelected as vice chairman.

Sanford to hold office hours on St. Helena

Rep. Mark Sanford’s district staff will be conducting January satellite office hours at 2 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 12, at the St. Helena Branch Library at 6355 Jonathan Frances Sr. Road in Beaufort County.

Satellite office hours are conducted around the district by the representative’s staff in order to be as accessible as possible to constituents who require assistance with federal agencies, including Medicare, Veterans Affairs, Social Security, the Internal Revenue Service or even help processing a passport.

Additionally, anyone wishing to express an opinion or ask a question is welcome to stop by. Sanford is not scheduled to be in attendance.

Library joins project focused on literacy

The Beaufort County Library has partnered with The Literacy Center and the University of South Carolina Beaufort (USCB) to offer classes that teach English to parents and their children ages 4 to 10.

Family Literacy 360 is an initiative that uses the Parents and Children Together (PACT) model of instruction, was developed by Dr. Elizabeth Brinkerhoff, assistant professor and assessment coordinator at the USCB Department of Education.

The goal is to establish and sustain a network of common literacy services across Beaufort County addressing family literacy and providing skills promoting the growth of English capability within the family.

The services are designed to improve language development and reading skills, transforming the home into a more active learning environment.

Lessons of one and a half hours in length occur once a week for six weeks. Ten families can be accommodated at each site. The classes focus on reading skills parents can use at home, vocabulary and language complexity growth for both parents and children and adhere to South Carolina State standards.  Parents are given a book at each class to read at home to their child and to add to their own collection.

The program is seeking volunteers to serve as Family Literacy tutors.  The Literacy Center provides training as well as all lessons, supplies, and materials needed to conduct classes. Tutors need not be teachers.

Volunteers are also needed as site coordinators responsible for overseeing the program and collecting data designed to evaluate the impact of the program.

For more information on Family Literacy volunteers or on the Family Literacy 360 initiative, contact Jan O’Rourke, Beaufort County Library assistant director, at 843-255-6464 or jorourke@bcgov.net.

Lady’s Island forum to be held Jan. 12

Lady’s Island Community Forum: Designing A Future for Lady’s Island will be held from 6-8 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 12, at the Lady’s Island Elementary School cafeteria at 73 Chowan Creek Bluff in Beaufort.

The Sea Island Corridor Coalition and the Coastal Conservation League will host this event, which will focus on rethinking the future of Lady’s Island and the S.C. 21/Sea Island Parkway corridor.

The public is encouraged to attend to discuss issues related to development, traffic, and community preservation.

WJCL continues to work on DirecTV agreement

Hearst Television, parent of WJCL, is continuing its efforts to renew its carriage agreement with DirecTV after reaching an impasse on New Year’s Eve.

As a result of the ongoing impasse, WJCL is not being carried by DirecTV.

Nonetheless, viewers may continue to receive WJCL for free, over the air, and, where available, from their local cable or other satellite operators.

The channel impacted is 22.

Viewers can determine the type of antenna needed to receive the signals of Hearst Stations at www.antennaweb.org. To contact DirecTV, call  800-531-5000.

Beaufort County offers free secure shredding 

The Beaufort County Public Works Department Solid Waste and Recycling Division continues to offer secure document shredding for county residents.

The next event will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 21, at the Public Works South Site located at 9 Benton Field Road in Bluffton.

Any types or colors of paper, file folders or envelopes are acceptable. Staples or paper clips do not need to be removed. Materials can be brought in any container or bag and will be emptied into roll carts for immediate shredding.

All materials will be shredded on site for as long as the trucks have capacity. Only residential quantities will be accepted. No materials from commercial businesses will be accepted. No electronics will be collected at this event.

For more information, contact the Solid Waste and Recycling Division at 843-255-2736 or visit www.bcgov.net/recycle.