Wednesday, January 4, 1984

Aiken County Register

Location: Aiken, South Carolina

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Aiken County Register (Newspaper) - January 4, 1984, Aiken, South Carolina Bulk Rail U S POSTAGE PAID Alkon SC Permit No M Carrier Priiort Established 1983 Volume 1 Number 7 Aiken S C Wedneiday January 4 1984 25 Per Copy Bitter Cold Winds Plague County By STEPHEN D HALE Register Editor AIKEN It was am Wednesday Dec 28 when the Augusta television sta tions broke into their broad casts to say a tornado had been seen in Martinez nor thwest of Augusta and was headed toward Aiken Coun ty At the sky over Aiken Estates grew horribly black the wind swirled fiercely stopped dead then crashed back again hurling a brief but violent rain storm at the hill Within a few moments the eerie weather convinced county employes to evacuate the upper floors of their building as the twister skimmed over Aiken A few blocks away Carl Langley stepped out of his office at the Aiken Bureau of the Augusta Chronicle on Pendleton Street to see what could have been a terrible disaster sweep harmlessly over the city It was pearshaped Langley said It was black and it looked like there was another smaller one being swept along behind the first tornado The second floor of the Aiken County Sheriffs Department was also evacuated and the storm was reported a few minutes later in Perry SC and then in Orangeburg County The tornado that chose to frighten the heart of the city but not to destroy it was on ly the most unusual of the severe weather visited on the county for the two holi day weeks Freezing temperatures were the norm with a low of 0 degrees reported on Christmas morning The record cold several days in the past two weeks set records for low temperatures claimed one casualty Christmas night The frozen body of Dora Sanders Jordan 43 of Barn well Avenue in Aiken was found on Bichland Avenue at am Dec 26 Aiken County Coroner Sue Town send said Ms Jordan died of exposure to the cold Broken water pipes plagued the county par ticularly the school system throughout the period The heating systems of many area schools had been cut off over the holidays to save money but the practice end ed up costing much more in emergency repair bills Over 25 schools were damaged by water from broken pipes over Christmas weekend and several other county buildings including the county office complex and the agricultural building suffered the same fate Broken pipes were also a ma jor problem at the Mattie C Hall Nursing Care Center Continued on Page 16 Keep Aiken Elementary By SUZY SMITH AIKEN To Keep or Not to Keep Aiken Elemen tary is the question making rounds in Aiken these days Those who want to keep the school are just as passionate about it as are those who want to replace the building Emotions are running high for retention of the school A recent facilities survey authorized by the SC Dept of Education recommended Aiken Elementary and other schools in the district be abandoned due to deterioration Built 93 years ago as Aiken Institute the school offered a full and complete education to students until the 1930s when it began housing grades onesix It presently serves children in kindergartenfifth grade Mandle Surasky attended Aiken Institute from 190415 He feels the central location of the school cuts down the cost of busing students It will be a grave injustice if they close the school he commented Another Aikenite Betty Townes Owen feels Americans are replacing too many landmark buildings The new modernistic buildings may be more func tional but our old buildings have more character Good examples are Aiken Elemen tary the old post office and the courthouse Mrs Owen attended Aiken Institute from 192031 She taught in Aiken High School both at Laurens St and Rutland Drive She emphatically supports any efforts to renovate the Aiken Elemen tary school building and re tain it as a public school Aside from the historical significance of Aiken Elementary there are prac tical reasons in favor of its retention Mrs Lawana McKenzie assistant principal at the school accompanied SC Dept of Education represen tatives on a tour of the facili ty in early 1983 The representatives recorded favorable comments during their tour and liked our spacious classrooms with Continued on Page 2 This Week In Brief AIKEN County Councilwoman Faye Hatcher has talked to Republican officials concern ing her rumored party switch If Mrs Hatcher does switch parties it would reverse the present council split of five Democrats to four Republicans Mrs Hat cher has been embroiled in a controversy over her pro posal to change the form of county government from a counciladministrator to councilmanager form That would eliminate the elected offices of treasurer and auditor AIKEN Under the in itiative of council member William Clyburn Aiken County Council voted Tues day night to attempt to reach a consensus on the long simmering debate over dual taxation with county municipalities by early March The several incorporated towns in the county have for over five years been conten ding that their residents are taxed by the county for ser vices that they do not fully receive For instance the cities contend that they sup ply their own police and gar bage collection functions and should not have to pay for the county sheriffs department or green boxes A combined countycities task force on the subject produced a plan two years ago however that effort fail ed when the county council refused to fund their sugges tions The council voted unanimously Tuesday that the time has come to resolve the issue as coun cilman Clyburn said