Anderson County moves forward with economic development projects.

Vocal crowds may have stretched out the latest Anderson County Council meeting with concerns over a countywide mask ordinance and relocation of a Confederate monument, but the council made headway on the budget and several economic development projects.

The county's proposed budget was passed unanimously by all councilmembers except Gracie Floyd who, despite being live streamed into the meeting, was not able to vote due to her physical absence.

The total $83.8 million general budget includes $27 million for county administration, $39.9 million for public safety and $9.6 million for public works, stemming from an expected $45.5 million in revenue from the special revenue fund. Capital project allocations included $1.5 million for the County's Green Pond Landing Event Center, $9.4 million for a general obligation bond from 2019 and $2.7 million for general economic development.

The council also approved a lease agreement that opens a county facility at 1428 Pearman Dairy Road for county startup and economic development projects which was also passed unanimously. Allocations in the budget set aside $885,000 for the development.

"We have all 130,000 square feet right now taken by several incubator projects, and we should have announcements on those shortly," Burriss Nelson, economic development director for Anderson County, said at the meeting. Additional projects are in the works for 2021 at the space, he said, while thanking the council for its continued support.

Plans to expand Anderson and Greenville counties' joint industrial and business park, Project Unity Gateway, and the execution of a fee agreement between Anderson County and BMW Manufacturing for the benefit of the company's suppliers in the county received a second reading.

Project Unity Gateway includes a mixed-use development slated for the juncture of W. Washington and Academy streets in...

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