§ 156.430  ORGANIZATION.
   (A)   Creation.
       (1)   Pursuant to S.C. Code Title 6, Chapter 29, as amended, the Historic District Preservation Commission, composed of five members appointed by the Mayor and Town Council, was established by Ordinance No.    , passed    , having replaced and superseded the previous Old Village Historic District Commission, which was established by Ordinance No. 06052, passed June 21, 2006, having replaced and superseded the previous Town Appearance Commission, which had been established by ordinance passed May 5, 1986.
      (2)   It is the declared policy of the Town Council that it will consider and approve only those persons who:
         (a)   Reside in the historic districts and shall have been residents of the town for a period of at least two years prior to appointment provided, however, that one of the current five seats shall not be required to reside within the historic districts. Each Historic District shall have at least one resident on the HDPC;
         (b)   Have  demonstrated  their  general  knowledge of the community and concern for the welfare of the total community and its citizens;
      (3)   Members shall have a demonstrated interest and knowledge of the historic district.
      (4)    In general, and to the extent that there are local resources in the community, members shall be knowledgeable in architecture, architectural history, planning, archeology, history, building arts, and any other areas of knowledge that would benefit the mission of the Commission and community.
      (5)    Members shall serve without compensa- tion except for reimbursement for authorized expenses related to the performance of their duties.
      (6)    Town Council shall fill at least one seat with a professional in architectural history, preservation, history, archaeology, building arts, or any other area of knowledge that would benefit the mission of the Commission and meet the state-certified-local- government-membership requirement.
      (7)    The HDPC shall oversee the Old Village Historic District and any future historic districts established by the town.
   (B)   Term of office.
      (1)   The term of office for each member appointed shall be two years.
      (2)   A partial term of 12 months or more shall constitute one term.
      (3)   In order that terms may be staggered, the following initial terms according to seat numbers shall apply: Seats 1 and 2 shall be two years; Seats 3, 4 and 5 shall be one year.
 
Seat Number
Expiration
1
January 1 of odd years
2
January 1 of odd years
3
January 1 of even years
4
January 1 of even years
5
January 1 of even years
 
      (4)   Members shall assume their duties at the first regular meeting after their appointment.
      (5)   Each member shall, however, serve until his or her successor is appointed and installed.
      (6)   The Town Council shall act promptly to make appointments in order to avoid vacant seats, the continued service of members with expired terms, or the clustering of more than three term expirations in a given year.
      (7)   While serving on the Board, none of the members shall hold any other public office or position in the municipality or county.
   (C)   Vacancy, absence, and removal.
      (1)   A vacancy in the term of office shall occur whenever it is found that a member has resigned, is unable to serve for whatever reason, or is removed in accordance with the provisions of this section. Any vacancy in the membership shall be filled for the unexpired term, as soon as may reasonably be accomplished by the Mayor and Town Council, in the same manner as the original appointment.
      (2)   Any member of the Commission may be removed by the Mayor, upon confirmation of the Town Council, for just cause, including neglect of duty or misconduct in office.
      (3)   Each member is required to attend 75% of called meetings per year on a rolling-year basis which shall be measured on the first of every month for the preceding year. Each member shall be afforded one excused absence which shall not be counted towards the attendance requirement.
      (4)   Excused absences include medical or family emergencies or unavoidable business or personal conflicts. Each member anticipating an excused absence shall notify the Chairperson and Secretary at least two full working days prior to the meeting that will be missed, and shall state the reason for the absence. Emergency situations that arise within the 48-hour period can be considered excused by the Chairperson.
      (5)   If removal for cause, except due to attendance, appears eminent, the Chairperson shall contact the member and ascertain whether removal should be considered by the Mayor and Town Council. The Chairperson shall then make a recom- mendation to Council prior to Council's acting on the matter.
      (6)   If removal due to attendance is necessary, the Town Administrator shall remove the member from the Commission prior to the next scheduled meeting and shall notify Town Council.
   (D)   Chair; Secretary; rules of procedure.
      (1)   At the first regular meeting of each calendar year, a Chair and Vice-Chair shall be elected by secret ballot.
      (2)   Staff mem bers of the town's Planning and Development Department shall serve as Secretary and Recording Secretary of the Commission
      (3)   The Commission shall adopt rules of procedure at the first meeting of each calendar year.
      (4)   The Recording Secretary shall keep minutes of its proceedings, showing the vote of each member upon each question.
   (E)   Meetings and quorum.
      (1)   Meetings of the Commission shall be held at the call of the Chairperson, and at such other times as the Commission may determine.
      (2)   Three members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum for conducting business, including members who have recused themselves for conflict of interest.
      (3)   Public notice shall be given for all meetings of the Commission in accordance with the requirement outlined in S.C. Code, Title 30, Ch. 4, also knows as the SC Freedom of Information Act, and all meetings of the Commission shall be open to the public.
   (F)   Professional advisor.  The Commission may consult with an architect, architectural historian, a person with an expertise in the building arts, or any other professional on an as-needed basis to receive professional advice. This advisor may be appointed by Town Council at the request of the Commission.
   (G)   Liability of members.
      (1)   Any member of the HDPC acting within the powers granted by ordinance is relieved from all personal liability for any damage and shall be held harmless by the town.
      (2)   Any suit brought against any member of the Commission within their official capacity shall be defended by a legal representative furnished by the town until the termination of the procedure.
(Ord. 06052, passed 6-21-06; Am. Ord. 09041, passed 7-14-09; Am. Ord. 09053, passed 8-12-09; Am. Ord. 10080, passed 1-11-11; Am. Ord. 14047, passed 8-12- 14; Am. Ord. 17026, passed 6-13-17; Am. Ord. 18035, passed 6-14-18; Am. Ord. 19062, passed 11-13-19)