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Surfside panel OKs public works director

Surfside Beach Town Council has hired a new public works director.

John Adair of Carolina Forest, a former deputy chief of New York City's Department of Sanitation, Manhattan, will start as the town's public works director on Monday.

The Town Council voted to approve his hiring Tuesday.

"We were looking for somebody who is well-rounded, who can act as a project manager and supervisor, and who is able to interact with the public," said Town Administrator Ed Booth about his decision to recommend Adair to the post.

Adair will make about $62,000 a year, Booth said.

Adair was chosen out of four finalists including Chris Bolster of Surfside Beach, the town's current maintenance director; Michael Doughtery of Surfside Beach, a superintendent of construction for a private company; and Bobby Radford of Surfside Beach, who is a project supervisor for a private company. Radford also is a former Surfside Beach public works director.

In addition, the Town Council decided Tuesday to put off consideration of dividing its public safety department.

Having a separate police and fire department would allow the town to seek more grants. When it comes to grants for such things as protective and safety gear, some federal and state agencies only give money to units officially called fire departments, say officials.

The issue will come up again at a workshop planned for April 27, Booth said.

The council also considered whether to move the skateboard park from an underutilized parking lot on 13th Avenue South due to some noise complaints from nearby property owners.

The council voted to leave the skateboard park where it is until June 1 and have engineers design a park, Booth said.