The York County Council, which opens its meetings with a prayer and the pledge of allegiance, will soon do its work under the banner of “In God We Trust.”
Six council members – District Three representative Joe Cox had left the meeting – voted Monday to add a plaque with the national motto to their meeting room at the county’s Agricultural Building.
Chairman Britt Blackwell made the request.
“We need to stand up for the values that made this country great,” he said. “This is one small step for the country.”
Blackwell said the country has become so politically correct that is has forgotten the Christian, moral principles the country was founded on.
Blackwell said he got the idea from Greenville County, which voted this month to put the motto in its chambers. The Greenville council got the idea from “In God We Trust America,” a nonprofit organization that encourages local governments to display the motto.
Councilman Bruce Henderson said faith has guided this nation. “It it wasn’t for God, this country wouldn’t have been born.”
Councilman Curwood Chappell made the motion to approve the motto. He said if “the book” (the Bible) were thrown away, America would become a nation of heathens such as Germany, Italy and Japan during World War II.
Blackwell said he hopes York County’s action will convince all other South Carolina counties to do the same.
No cost or location for the plaque was mentioned. Blackwell said the motto might be displayed behind the council. He said he was not concerned about any possible blacklash from the decision.
In other action Monday, the council:
• Voted down a moratorium for development along S.C. 49 in Lake Wylie. Several residents asked for halt in growth and the rezoning of some properties. The county is reviewing a development proposal for 173 houses in Lake Wylie. Henderson requested the moratorium. Other council members agreed with the need to study the problem. County Attorney Michael Kendree said it took more than a motion to pass a moratorium. Henderson said he will continue to press for action.
• Approved on first reading the rezoning of 15 acres on Jim McCarter Road near York. Phat Bottom Speedway operates lawnmower races at the site. Residents spoke for and against the rezoning, some complaining the races are too noisy. Kendree said the speedway is not permitted under current zoning and if the property is rezoned, it would need a variance. Two more approvals are needed before the property is rezoned.
• Approved a resolution for economic development project codeword “Pes.” The prospect would invest $2.5 million and bring 40 jobs to York County.
• Took action to construct two “spec” buildings for economic development at the East York Industrial Park and near the intersection of S.C. 160 and Interstate 77.