050516 News for Pawleys Island, Litchfield and Murrells Inlet
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Utilities: Santee Cooper will turn out the lights at Pawleys office

By Jason Lesley
Coastal Observer

Norman Reid says Santee Cooper’s decision to close its small Pawleys Island office on Tiller Drive will hurt people with limited transportation.

“I can handle myself, paying my bills,” Reid said, “but a lot of people in this community can’t do that, senior citizens and so forth.”

Santee Cooper spokeswoman Susan Mungo said the Pawleys Island office is one of four the state-owned utility is closing. She said Conway National Bank branch on Highway 17 and five Western Union branches in the Pawleys Island area will accept Santee Cooper payments.

The Santee Cooper office at 900 Inlet Square Dr. in Murrells Inlet will remain open for people wanting to talk directly with a customer service representative. It is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Reid, a former utility employee, said getting to Inlet Square is a problem for people without transportation. They are within walking distance of the office on Tiller Drive. Allowing customers to make payments at Conway National Bank is fine for those with cars, he said, but crossing Highway 17 on foot is dangerous. “We are going to have accidents,” he said.

People are still trying to adjust to Time Warner’s decision to close its Pawleys Island office, Reid added.

Reid contacted County Council Member Steve Goggans about making an appeal to Santee Cooper to keep the office open. “We definitely need support with this,” he said.

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