Georgetown City Council members pitch idea to merge some government services

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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD)- Two Georgetown City Council members want to see if merging some city and Georgetown County government services would decrease taxes for residents struggling with poverty.

Councilman Jonathan Anger and councilwoman Carol Jayroe want to see if a committee can be formed to explore more partnerships between the City of Georgetown and Georgetown County to save money for taxpayers.

“Anything that is hard cost that could possibly be saved, shaved, efficiencies. But before we take the first step down the path of having a discussion we don’t know if there is an opportunity,” said councilman Angner.

Angner and Jayroe want to see if the city and the county can use equipment they both need.

“Let us borrow it instead of paying five hundred thousand dollars for another piece of equipment. That’s pretty much what we’re talking about, what they have and what we have,” said Jayroe. “Looking at both of our assets and seeing how we can work together with them.”

They suggest that courts, human resources and information technology be added to a list of jointly used services.

Georgetown Mayor Brendan Barber says he wishes Jayroe and Angner announced their idea in a more professonal way. Barber says that city employees found out about this idea in the news and not through internal discussion.

“Now people are questioning with this opinion that’s out there whether they’re going to have jobs and how this is going to impact their future along with their families,” said Barber.

The mayor also says despite the concerns of the council members, Georgetown is not in as bad of a place as some might think.

“We have tremendous growth in housing, a 35% increase in building permits, we have people who are moving here. If you look at our business here in the city it’s a vital operation,” said Barber.

The city and county do share some services already, such as parks and recreation, 9-1-1 call management and detention centers.

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