Edgefield County As It Happens
Edgefield County, South Carolina

July 22, 2005

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Some people just do not know when to quit


web posted July 22, 2005

During the last few weeks the revelation that Administrator Wayne Adams had drafted ordinances that quietly zoned the entire county, which were approved on a first reading by the county council, has turned into a huge backlash on his office and the county council.

The county council has stepped back from the issue and indications from several councilmen are the ordinances will never receive a second passage. The Edgefield County Planning Commission also rejected the ordinances at their regular meeting held Thursday night.

However, in order to support his actions and his ordinances, Administrator Wayne Adams brought in attorney Roy Bates, who is considered a “zoning specialist”, to promote the admittedly “unpopular” zoning, as Bates said.

In typical Adams fashion the intentions he has is never “on the agenda” of the meetings and he tried, as he successfully did with the zoning ordinances, to have Roy Bates added at the last minute to the meeting. Building and Planning Director Howard Gibson rightfully refused the unscrupulous attempt to insert a paid advocate for Adams’ agenda. Adams then tried to have the planning commission vote Mr. Bates on to the agenda; they also refused the underhanded move.

The same process was used by Adams to insert the zoning of the county to an unsuspecting council who trusted him. The planning commission seems to be a bit quicker on the “uptake” than council.

We cannot help but notice that even Administrator Wayne Adams’ strongest supporters of the zoning have backed away from his corner. Nadine Horne, Mark Roberts, and Keller Harmon who led the contingent from the Trenton Lakes area supporting the ordinances have now backed away from offering their support. “It is not my right to zone people I don’t even know,” Mrs. Horne stated to the planning commission on Thursday night. Adams is all alone.

As any good unelected official with power over the purse strings does, he simply uses county funds to pay an expensive advocate of zoning to tell officials how zoning is the end all, be all, do all for controlling what people do on their property. Attorney Roy Bates’ “opinions” do not come cheap and they are directed at the sole agenda of zoning.

We find it interesting that Adams is able to expend county funds consistently to pay someone to support his agenda, zoning the entire county, yet never pays to have equal paid representation of the non-zoning side. Adams has a history of doing just that to further his own personal quest for control over the use of all property in Edgefield County.

County Council Chairman Monroe Kneece asked the Editor of Edgefield Daily.com to focus less attention on Administrator Wayne Adams. We explained that the only time we focus attention on any public official is when they are doing things improper. We agreed that we would make every effort to continue to provide the people of Edgefield County with the fullest and most complete coverage of events and that as long as Adams did nothing that merited our attention we would not mention him.

However, the very next day Administrator Adams did what we fully expected he would do, and had been tipped to, he brought in Roy Bates to try to support his obviously flawed, unpopular, and obviously dead ordinances.

Why throw good money into a bad idea?

Basically, to try to save face with the council he left embarrassed over the misinformed vote on July 22, he can only find support if he pays for it. Of course, he is paying for it with taxpayer funds. Basically, the overwhelming majority of the citizens who oppose zoning are paying to have someone support Adams’ agenda of zoning the entire county.

The real issue is, in our opinion, to provide developer Bettis Rainsford with the zoning he wants that would increase his property values in the Mount Vintage and the newly constructed Shaw Estates subdivisions located on Sweetwater Road.

That effort to zone, instigated by Adams, has failed to be granted with public approval.
This presented a problem for Adams because the process did not give the desired results and did not meet his handler’s wishes and the bold move was taken to subvert not only the council, but the planning commission. With the ability to exploit the concerns over a chicken farm Adams was able to try to zone the county to achieve a goal the process instituted was defeating.

Some people just do not know when to quit.    

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