UNION COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – In the wake of a state investigation into the Union County Sheriff’s Office, county council voted unanimously Tuesday night on two issues.
In addition to asking for the sheriff’s resignation, Union County leaders also discussed the possibility of changes in the power structure at the sheriff’s office.
State investigators cleared Sheriff David Taylor of wrongdoing, but their report uncovered a lot of allegations.
The first vote asked for Sheriff David Taylor’s resignation.
“All in favor right hand… The motion carries unanimous,” Union County Supervisor Frank hart said.
The second vote would change the power structure within the sheriff’s office. The referendum introduced would ultimately ask voters to help put checks and balances in place at the sheriff’s office.
“We want the people to know that we’re not going to tolerate stuff like that,” Union County District 5 Councilman Tommy Hill said.
The new ‘County Police Force’ would have to be approved by voters.
“County council could step in and say ‘you’re no longer over day-to-day operations at the police force.’ Now that would be a last resort,” Hart said.
Under that referendum, deputies would become county employees and council would have full oversight of the operations and how money is spent at the sheriff’s office.
“They should have power over that. He’s not indispensable. If he did wrong, he don’t need to be in there,” voter Carolyn Beard said.
Some voters said house cleaning shouldn’t stop with the sheriff.
“Yes I think it’s fair. Everybody that had something to do with it should be out of there. That’s what I’ve got to say,” Union County resident Shirley Littlejohn said.
Council members and the county supervisor said even though the vote calling for the sheriff’s resignation is not binding, officials wanted their votes for his removal to be on record.
According to the county supervisor, state law supports councils efforts to strip the sheriff of his day-to-day duties, should the need arise. He said Horry County currently operates under this system.