Official referred to pre-trial program

A North Charleston fire captain charged with criminal domestic violence has been referred to a pre-trial intervention program for first-time offenders.

Capt. David Lombardi, 42, was arrested by Dorchester County sheriff's deputies April 24 after his wife and daughter told police that he pushed his wife down on their couch and choked her before letting go.

Lombardi told police that he pushed his wife down on the couch and held her down after she attacked him.

He had a trial date set for Wednesday but was referred to the pre-trial intervention program that allows first-time offenders to have their arrest record expunged after completing a program consisting of counseling, education and community service, according to the Dorchester County clerk of court office.

North Charleston Fire Chief Greg Bulanow said Lombardi remains on active duty, as he has since his arrest.

Folly Beach Public Safety Chief Terry Boatwright said Lombardi also remains a contract firefighter for his department. Boatwright said Lombardi, who is also a reserve police officer for the department, will not function in a law enforcement capacity until the charge is resolved.

School counselors get state honors

Two Lowcountry counselors are among six statewide who have been honored by the State Commission on Higher Education and the S.C. Department of Education for success in promoting higher education awareness.

Three counselors won the 2010 S.C. Higher Education Awareness Readiness Transition award, one at each grade level -- elementary, middle and high school. Crystal Lynn Halley, who works at Alston Middle in Dorchester District 2, received the award for middle school counselors.

Three counselors also were named finalists for the award, and Carolyn Aarons from the Daniel Island School was among those recognized.

S.C. HEART Award recipients received a $3,500 award and a $1,500 incentive grant for their schools' counseling departments. Finalists received a $1,000 incentive grant for their schools.

The award is funded through the U.S. Department of Education and the College Access Challenge Grant.

Carnival Fantasy to return Sunday

The Carnival Fantasy returns to Charleston on Sunday for passengers to debark in the morning and another group to set sail later that day.

Drivers should take note of a street closure on Concord Street from north of Market Street to the intersection south of Hasell Street on Washington Street beginning about 11 a.m. To reach areas north of Union Pier Terminal, including the S.C. Aquarium, drivers may use Laurens, Calhoun and Charlotte streets.

Embarkation should end by 3:30 p.m. The Carnival Glory arrives for an embarkation only on Monday afternoon. The street closing will last from about 2 p.m. until the embarkation is finished.

Utility to test dam warning sirens

MONCKS CORNER -- State-owned utility Santee Cooper will conduct semiannual testing of its 15 Santee Dam warning sirens in Berkeley, Clarendon and Williamsburg counties at 10 a.m. Monday.

Company workers will set off each siren in test mode, which includes about a one-minute siren, a prerecorded message and a live announcement concluding the test. Employees will record information on wail time, message clarity, completeness and volume for both the prerecorded and public-address announcements. The tests will last just a few minutes.

Oak Terrace plans block party today

The Oak Terrace Preserve neighborhood is hosting a public block party 11 a.m.-4 p.m. today at 100 Dolphin St. in North Charleston.

The block party will celebrate the The Sustainability Institute winning the first Home Depot Award of Excellence for Sustainable Community Development in December as well as other honors. There will be free food, live entertainment, games and kids activities. A tour of the neighborhood also is planned. For information, visit www.otpblockparty.com.

Concert in the Park on Daniel Island

DANIEL ISLAND -- The Concert in the Park returns to Daniel Island's Smythe Park at 6 tonight.

This free concert is open to the public and will feature Jeremy Davis and the Equinox Jazz Orchestra. Jeremy Davis of Savannah and his 16-piece orchestra will entertain with music from the likes of Frank Sinatra, Michael Buble, Harry Connick Jr. and more.

The Daniel Island Community Foundation will host a picnic competition for attendees. The winners of the best overall picnic spread will receive a $500 contribution toward the charity of their choice. Picnic judging begins at 6 p.m.; the orchestra performance begins at 7 p.m. Food vendors also will be on-site.

Law school dean gets Miss. post

OXFORD, Miss. -- Richard Gershon, founding dean of the Charleston School of Law, has been named the new dean of the University of Mississippi School of Law.

Gershon's appointment begins July 1, pending approval by the state College Board. He replaces Samuel Davis, who is returning to teaching.

He earned his Master of Laws degree in taxation from the University of Florida, his juris doctorate from the University of Tennessee and his bachelor's degree from the University of Georgia.