It's not to late. Census 2020. https://www.2020census.gov/?fbclid=IwAR1_yiVqaydicaPiFBN6JMrmIzK4sOBAyzGJe4YHRBVxXPYn51F_Oh5KYUw
Lower Savannah Council of Government (LSCOG) is a regional organization which coordinates cooperative development among local governments in Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Calhoun and Orangeburg counties of South Carolina.
2748 Wagener Road
|Monday||08:30 - 17:00|
|Tuesday||08:30 - 17:00|
|Wednesday||08:30 - 17:00|
|Thursday||08:30 - 17:00|
|Friday||08:30 - 17:00|
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As early as 1966, over a year before Governor Robert E. McNair would sign legislation dividing South Carolina into ten official planning districts for area-wide programs, a small group of local leaders were preparing the designation of the Lower Savannah Economic Development District. These men, who united Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg and Barnwell counties toward the common goal of promoting the various economic resources of their region, could hardly have known that after 50 years their efforts would lead to over $588,502,615 in state and federal grants being secured for cities and counties in the Lower Savannah Region.
The office was officially established on June 20, 1967 by an EDA grant of $31,450 and local funds of $10,500. Mr. P.E. Brabham of Bamberg was elected the first Chairman of the Board, and the administrative staff consisted of an Executive Director and a Secretary. This staff was housed in the basement of the “Farmers and Merchants Bank” in downtown Aiken, a space donated by the bank’s president – James D. McNair. The first executive director of Lower Savannah was Mr. Joel B. Gunnells – a public administrator from Georgia with a background in farming and a strong desire to make a difference.
On January 1, 1969, Calhoun and Orangeburg counties were added to this regional network, broadening the abilities of Lower Savannah to serve its member governments. It was at this time that the Lower Savannah Economic Development District became the “Lower Savannah Regional Planning and Development Commission.” The “Commission” would change its name again in 1972, becoming known as the “Lower Savannah Regional Planning and Development Council.”
Quickly, the scope of Lower Savannah broadened to include not only economic development, but also Law Enforcement Assistance Programs (LEAP); comprehensive local and regional planning; Health, Education and Welfare (HEW); comprehensive health planning; services to older Americans; review of federal applications; and recreation/historic preservation planning. It was now becoming clear that regional councils were indeed the answer to efficient administration of government funds within a given area.
Flash forward 50 years, and Lower Savannah Council of Governments still holds the same vision of our founders. The original two-person staff has grown into nearly 50 personnel and volunteers, who work on various programs to improve the region’s quality of life. The Board of Directors current membership of 40 greatly surpasses the original board of 18. The staff and Board of Directors are dedicated to ensuring that the needs of all six counties are served - regardless of land size or population. It’s this dedication and community support that has led to the Council of Governments’ success year-after-year. Over the next 50 years and beyond, the Council will continue to promote unity between the six counties, keep a positive vision for the future and seek innovations to advance the region.