County may repeal impact fees
Unpopular impact fees could be on the way out.
Tuesday night, Georgetown County Council adopted a resolution that could do away with the impact fees enacted three years ago.
The vote was 5-1 in favor of the resolution.
Councilman Ron Charlton cast the lone no vote, and councilman Leona Myers-Miller was absent from the meeting.
The resolution would eliminate portions of the development impact fees that were designed to fund some new parks and recreation facilities, libraries, law enforcement and road facilities.
That repeal would be dependent on approval of a referendum to add a one-cent sales tax in Georgetown County.
Charlton tried to get Council to end the fee on Dec. 31 this year. County administrator Sel Hemingway said that could not be done.
Charlton and Bob Anderson both said they didn’t like tying the repeal of the impact fee to the proposed sales tax increase.
Chairman Johnny Morant said this resolution clarifies the council’s intention with the public for the sales tax.
There has been much vocal opposition to the sales tax, which will be on the ballot in November.
If approved, the sales tax would levy a one percent increase on retail sales. Over an eight-year period, the penny-per-dollar increase would pay for about $44 million in capital improvements.
Those projects include $5 million for dredging the Port of Georgetown, and a list of other projects including road paving, libraries and park improvements and more.
The referendum also states that the one percent sales tax increase would be eliminated at the end of the eight-year period.
With the approval of the resolution, an ordinance will be presented to Council for first reading at its Oct. 9 meeting.
Staff writer Chris Sokoloski contributed to this story.
By Tommy Howard
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