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THE ONE TO WATCH: Hotel task force team announced
The team has been assembled. A group of 13 members and one alternate will, over the next several weeks, tackle one of Charleston's most talked-about topics: the growing number of hotel developments on the peninsula.
After a Charleston City Council meeting last week where members voted to defer Mayor John Tecklenburg's most recent proposed changes to the city's accommodations rules, he announced that a task force with representatives from Council, the visitor industry, preservation groups and other stakeholders would have about a month to put together new recommendations.
Here's the lineup:
- Mayor John Tecklenburg
- Gary White, District One Councilmember
- Dudley Gregorie, District Six Councilmember
- Mike Seekings, District Eight Councilmember
- Helen Hill, CEO at Explore Charleston
- Winslow Hastie, president of the Historic Charleston Foundation
- Susan Bass, president of the French Quarter Neighborhood Association
- Deborah Powell-Anderson, owner at the Fair Deal Grocery
- Kristopher King, executive director at Preservation Society of Charleston
- Jim Palassis, Palas Hospitality
- Tim Muller, Charleston Peninsula Neighborhood Consortium
Jacob Lindsey, the city of Charleston's planning director, and Leonard Krawcheck, chair of the Board of Zoning Appeals, will act as advisory participants for the group.
The group also has one alternate, Historic Ansonborough Neighborhood Association president John Marsland.
The three members of Council who will serve on the task force all expressed concerns with the proposal Tecklenburg brought before Council last week. Gregorie described the proposal as "too vague," and White said the plan should have been discussed more with members of Council. Seekings said that beginning with a proposed a moratorium — Tecklenburg had suggested a one-year moratorium on hotels when he ran for mayor — had been the wrong way to start the conversation.
Both White and Seekings, along with Tecklenburg, are running for mayor.
The task force will meet for the first time this Friday at 11 a.m. in the City Council Chamber at 80 Broad Street. The team is expected to bring a proposal to Council at its May 28 meeting.
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OPENINGS AND CLOSINGS:
- Revelator poured its last cup of coffee on upper King Street this week.
- A new Vietnamese deli, Ha Long Café, opens soon on Meeting Street.
- Five Burger King restaurants in the Charleston area have recently closed.
- The West Ashley Farmers Market is now open on Wednesdays.
- A Summerville shopping center is getting a makeover and a slate of new tenants, including a Parker's convenience store and gas station, a Grayco Hardware & Home store and a Dunkin’ donuts shop.
OTHER STUFF YOU SHOULD KNOW:
- A Charleston property manager was sentenced to federal prison for defrauding local homeowner groups of $700,000. (Post and Courier)
- A complaint says attorneys are asking for "outrageously high" fees for their work fighting SCE&G over its failed nuclear project. (Post and Courier)
- IBM Corp. executives tried to reassure investors at its yearly shareholders meeting, which was held Tuesday in North Charleston. (Post and Courier)
- NPR looks inside Volvo's plant in Ridgeville, S.C. as an example of the continued importance of people in advanced manufacturing. (NPR)
- The billionaires and executives at this week's Milken Institute conference are worried about a growing backlash against capitalism. (L.A. Times)
SOUND SMART AT WORK:
"Hey boss, did you know that if 4 percent of Charleston-area commuters changed their behavior to avoid rush-hour completely, it would take about 6,700 cars off the roads — enough to clear an entire lane of Interstate 526?"
A new regional initiative, "Reboot the Commute," was launched this week, and 18 of the area's largest employers have said they'll back the recommendations, which encourage workplaces to offer flexible schedules, more opportunities to work from home and incentives for carpooling or taking public transit to work.
HIRES AND PROMOTIONS:
- Charleston County Public Library's executive director is Angela Craig.
- Adam Smith is now assistant superintendent at Frampton Construction
- Lisa M. Saltzburg was promoted to senior counsel at Motley Rice LLC.
- The social media manager atGotcha is now Michael Stettner.
- Bob Kodrzycki joined the Charleston Area Small Business Development Center as a technology commercialization consultant.
- The senior development officer at the Preservation Society of Charleston is now Jane McCullough.
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