Charleston tax increase passes
Charleston City Council passed its emergency tax increase for public safety issues Tuesday following a multi-hour public hearing and debate over whether it was the best approach.
Some members of council tried to put the brakes on the proposal for more study and to find other sources of revenue in the city.
The measure ultimately passed on a vote of 7-6, with Mayor Joe Riley in support. Others backing the increase were council members James Lewis, Robert Mitchell, William Dudley Gregorie, Keith Waring, Dean Riegel and Bill Moody.
City property taxes will go up by $3.48 million a year. A house valued at $250,000 would increase $35 per year.
Riley requested the tax increase to pay for 19 new police officers to patrol elementary schools in the city, and to build and operate two new fire stations, in West Ashley and on Daniel Island.
Council also passed new skateboarding rules for downtown in a six-month pilot program.