"Years ago there was a push to use sales taxes more so than property taxes to fund local government - I urged against this because property taxes are stable (homes don’t leave when the economy ebbs and flows) whereas sales taxes do ebb and flow - and as we now clearly see what COVID-19 has done to local sales tax revenue, it is a good thing we didn’t make this change."
While serving on Charleston County Council, I...
Led the effort to Consolidate 911 Dispatch
This required bringing together every municipality and Public Service District in the county in order to improve this most-important service to our community. The Sheriff said at the time that “consolidating 911 Dispatch was the most courageous thing he had seen his entire time as sheriff”
Helped create the Green-Ribbon Committee
Colleen Condon, a Democrat and I initiated this program. This committee went to work to study our waste management efforts, improve our Recycling Program, close the old incinerator that was hurting the quality of life in North Charleston, and prolong the life of our landfill. Charleston County has the best recycling program in the state of South Carolina.
Never voted to raise taxes
I kept the tax rate the same while preserving the quality of life for all county residents - this requires a purposeful effort to know and understand the budget, and I did. I studied the budget because I wanted to know how to provide the services our neighbors wanted while keeping the tax rate the same. No one will know the budget better than me.
Ended automatic pay increases for County Council Members
I learned that this was in place so I placed it on the agenda to end it. It passed. I just felt that if elected officials wanted to increase their pay they should place it one the agenda and give it an up or down vote
Hospitality Sales Tax Disbursements
County council receives literally hundreds of applications to receive funds for their events, from Spoleto to the Aquarium. The process was broken. I asked The Charleston Area Coventions & Visitors Bureau & The College of Charleston’s School of School of Tourism to help us evaluate these hundreds of applications. Why did I lead this effort? These groups knew which events have the most impact on tourism. By including them, we invested the hospitality ta revenue where it would have th most impact and have a multiplying effect on the fund.
Understand the importance of diversifying the tax base for our residents
I served on the Economic Development Committees while on both Mt. Pleasant Town Council and
Charleston County Council.