Barnwell Mayor issues statement on masks and confederate monument in area

CSRA News

BARNWELL, S.C. (WJBF) — NewsChannel 6 is getting a better idea of how officials in the city of Barnwell wants to proceed with two items in the City, masks and a confederate monument near the center of town.

Mayor Marcus Rivera issued a statement on Facebook that said that the mask discussion continues to grow as the number of COVI-19 cases rise. He’s in favor of having to wear a mask whenever entering any public building but the city has yet to make it an ordinance.

Meanwhile, officials learned the confederate monument near the center of town belongs to Barnwell County and not the City. The mayor said quote “anything that creates divisiveness, or puts fear in some its citizens, doesn’t represent what county stands for, should not be celebrated or posted in the center of our town. I do understand that it’s history.”

It went on to say Barnwell County has a public museum and that’s where it belongs.

If you have any questions or concerns about wearing mask, contact your local elected official in your district or contact Mayor Rivera at (803) 571-7008

Questions or comments about the monument should be directed you’re asked to contact your County Councilman who represents you or County Administrator Tim Bennett at (803)541-1010.

Full Statement:

These two items have been the topic of discussion and interest for me as Mayor over a month or so. Several people from different religious groups, ethnicities, and leaders in the community have contacted with their concerns for both.

The mask discussion continues to grow as the number of COVID-19 cases rise. I am in favor of having to mask up whenever entering any public facility to try and slow the spread of this pandemic. When you think of the amount of traveling along with the number of people we come in contact with daily. It seems to be the only reasonable thing to do, however we have not “yet” made this a city ordinance. At some point we must care enough for those around us and those we love regardless of the party you claim.

For any questions or concerns about mask coverings please contact your city councilman  in your district or contact me at (803)571-7008

Secondly the “Daughters of Confederates” Monument in the middle of downtown Barnwell. After about a three days of research I was able to uncover that the monument does not belong to the City of Barnwell, but is the property of Barnwell County. Here is my opinion and we all have one. As a citizen of the county I feel that anything that creates divisiveness, or puts fear in some its citizens, doesn’t represent what county stands for, should not be celebrated or posted in the center of our town. I do understand that it’s history and because Barnwell County is fortunate enough to have a public museum I feel that’s exactly where the monument should reside. There is no better place to share the stories of the past along with celebrating how far we have come. I’d honestly like to see some of the pioneers of Barnwell statues (Solomon Blatt and his team) (James Brown who Augusta continues to benefit from claiming)

If you have any concerns about the monument please contact your County Councilman that represents you or County Administrator Tim Bennett at (803)541-1010.

These are some of the topics and dialogues that we have to have in order to continue moving forward. Some will like and some won’t. I’m fine with that, but we won’t stop working until Barnwell works for us all. Happy 4th and enjoy!!

#BarnwellStrong
Marcus Rivera for Barnwell

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories