Charleston County Council considering adding additional 1/2% sales tax

Tonight Charleston County Council had a look at their budget for the next year. The proposed budget does not include a tax increase. They were also told the estimated 1/2 cent sales tax dollars total for road projects is coming in as expected. 
Council’s finance committee heard that the current 1/2 cent road money is coming in steadily for current projects, but they say there are projects like the widening of Highway 41 in Mount Pleasant would cost just too much for this current 1/2 cent tax.
“That’s a much larger issue for a potential sales tax in the future.” County Council Chairman Elliott Summey says you’ll soon hear more about a proposed additional 1/2 cent sales tax, for a total of 1% on sales in the county. “We’re gonna start having public meetings June 13th. A series of them all over the county, asking folks to give us their opinion on the different types of road projects they would like to see.”
He said council could use the money for a number of road projects. “I would gather that when we have that public meeting in Mount Pleasant those folks over there will be very passionate about 41. We would see conversely over in the Ravenel, James Island or Johns Island area, folks would be really pumped up about the potential of a 17 and Main flyover or widening of Main road.”
Summey said he’d prefer to not have to add a new tax, but the state is doing very little with roads. “We feel like we are kind of on our own with what the legislature and the DOT is providing us moving forward. We’re a rapid, growing community, that is affluent and we have a fantastic quality of life, but that quality of life is in jeopardy based on our transportation needs.”
If county council decides they do want to go forward with that referendum, they will have to pass it some time in July, to get it to the state election commission by August, and then voters would decide on the referendum and whether to pass it in November. 

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