Thursday, March 9, 2017

COG Employees and Board Members Participate in the Honorary Commander Program

Fourteen civic leaders including COG Executive Director, Dr. Michael Mikota; Economic and Community Sustainability Director, Kyle Kelly; and board members Alfred Mae Drakeford (Chair), James T. McCain, and Vivian McGhaney, joined the ranks of honorary commander on March 3, 2017. The honorary commander program gives community leaders and their corresponding commanders the opportunity to share information, learn from one another, and participate in special events. To find out more about the program and see photos, visit the Shaw Air Force Base website.
Photo Source:

Thursday, March 2, 2017

COG Staff Outreach Project

Santee-Lynches RCOG staff collected and delivered canned goods to United Way in Kershaw County as part of our quarterly community outreach. The goods will help families who are in need within the county. Thank you to COG board member Brad Hanley for his assistance in delivering these items. COG staff will be completing outreach projects quarterly for other communities in our region.

Friday, February 3, 2017

Santee-Lynches Regional Long Range Transportation Plan

The Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments (Santee-Lynches) is providing public notification of proposed updates to the 2040 Long Range Transportation Plan, originally adopted in 2014.

The proposed revisions to the LRTP include additional data on pavement quality, traffic volume, and crashes occurring in the region, as well as updates to the proposed project list and rating criteria to ensure continued compliance with SCDOT and State of South Carolina Law.

Pending consideration of public comments, the updated LRTP will be reviewed by the Santee-Lynches Economic and Community Sustainability Committee and considered by the Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments Board of Directors).

Public Comments will be accepted until the close of business on March 2, 2017.

The document for public comment can be found at the following website, which also includes a link to the comment form Citizens may also send comments via mail or may provide them in person at the Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments offices located at 2525 Corporate Way, Suite 200, Sumter, SC 29154.

Friday, January 20, 2017

The Santee-Lynches Area Plan

The Health and Human Services staff is meeting today to work on the Area Plan for the Santee-Lynches region. The Area Plan is a document that is updated and maintained by HHS department and submitted to the Lt. Governor's Office on Aging. It identifies how services will be rendered to seniors in Sumter, Lee, Clarendon, and Kershaw Counties and how funds will be spent to provide these services and supports. For more information on the Area Plan and the services provided by the HHS Department, visit our website at or call our office at 803-775-7381.

City of Manning Comprehensive Planning

The COG is currently assisting the City of Manning as they write their new 10 year Comprehensive Plan. The Plan documents the current physical, social, and economic characteristics of a community and provides a vision and series of goals and objectives to guide community development in the future. Comprehensive Plans help facilitate and coordinate local decision-making, involve residents and stakeholders in the planning process, and inform landowners and developers about the community and its goals.
A critical component of developing an effective Comprehensive Plan is strong public engagement. The City needs feedback from residents about the current conditions in the community and about the aspirations residents have for Manning. The opinions offered by residents provide the basis for developing a vision for Manning and establishing a set of short-term and long-term objectives.
There are multiple ways for residents to get involved in this process. Throughout the month of January, a
survey is available online, at the Harvin Clarendon County Library, at City Hall, and at various restaurants and businesses throughout the city. You can find a list of participating businesses below or follow the link to the online survey on the City's website (, the Facebook page, "Tomorrow Together:Planning Manning for the Future"( or on the Santee-Lynches Council of Governments' website, ( Additionally, planning staff from the COG will be available at the library on Monday, January 23 from 4-8pm, Wednesday, January 25 from 9am-12pm, and Thursday, January 26 from 12pm-3pm to collect in-person feedback and answer any questions.
If you would like more information, please visit the Facebook link above or contact Santee-Lynches planner Susan Landfried via email at

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Santee-Lynches RCOG Attends Annual SCARC Conference

Board members attended the annual South Carolina Association of Regional Councils (SCARC) Conference in Myrtle Beach last week. This year's theme was "Celebrating the Past - Welcoming the Future" where presenters focused on 50 years of history for the ten Council of Governments (COG) within the state. Staff presented their COGs history on display during the conference for attendees to view.

Staff joined board members for their annual dinner at Rioz Brazilian Steakhouse. Dr. Mikota presented awards to board member legislators Senator Kevin Johnson, Rep. Laurie Funderburk, Rep. Grady Brown, and Rep. David Weeks for their support to the Council of Governments. Rep. Grady Brown was recognized for his many years of service in the House of Representatives and to the COG. Board member perfect attendance awards were also presented to Senator Kevin Johnson and Sammie Tucker.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Santee-Lynches COG Hosts Annual Summit and Banquet

On November 7th, 2016, the Santee-Lynches Regional Council of Governments hosted the Annual Summit and Awards Banquet for our Board members and regional partners.

As a federally designated Economic Development District, Santee-Lynches must review the strengths and weaknesses of our region, identify opportunities to advance economic vitality and promote new strategies for economic development through public and private partnerships. At the Summit, we worked with the participants on three exercises designed to help with that review process. The first was a group exercise to identify the identity of the region 20 years ago, today, and 20 years from now. Next, the participants broke into groups of about 8 to conduct an economic development focused SWOT exercise in which they were asked to articulate the region's positive and negative features to a prospective industry. Finally, each participant was asked to take some time to individually write down as many economic development related activities to pursue as they could think of on sticky notes. Once that was done, the groups then used an Eisenhower Matrix to prioritize the activities in four categories based on urgency and importance. The exercise resulted in a set of "pursue now" items, "plan for later" items, "partner" items, and "park it" items.

During the banquet portion of the event, Dr. Michael Mikota, Executive Director, presented several awards. Rep. Grady Brown was recognized for his dedicated service and leadership on the COG Board as he retires from the South Carolina House of Representatives, Sharon Durden was presented an award for 20 years of service as an employee of the COG, and COG staff along with the Santee-Lynches Workforce Development Board, Central Carolina Technical College, Sumter Economic Development, Kershaw County, South Carolina Department of Commerce and Santee-Lynches Regional Education Center were recognized for receiving three National Innovation Awards from the National Association of Development Organizations.