Chamber backing four Mount Pleasant candidates

The Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce has made its endorsements in Mount Pleasant’s upcoming Town Council races, and only one incumbent got the nod.

Incumbent Councilman Chris O’Neal won the backing of the chamber’s political action committee, which also is recommending businessmen Rodly Millet, Ben Bryson and Nick Collins. Collins previously served on council.

David Hand, chair of the chamber’s PAC, said all four candidates are aligned with the Lowcountry’s business community.

“Each candidate articulated pro-business opinions in addition to stressing the importance of properly managed growth that will preserve the town while also ensuring its future success,” he said.

Growth, zoning and related issues are expected to play a dominant role in the town’s Nov. 3 elections. Save Shem Creek —a nonprofit formed after concerns over a proposed Coleman Boulevard office building and other dense development —is holding a campaign forum at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Moultrie Middle School.

“This is a critical election year and it is of utmost importance to elect candidates who will continue to lead Mount Pleasant down a path of success,” Hand said.

The incumbents not getting the chamber’s nod include Ken Glasson and Chris Nickels. The others in the race include auctioneer Julio Avendano; motivational speaker Christian Bramson; Planning Commissioner Bob Brimmer; former councilman Joe Bustos; newspaper columnist Will Haynie; and Jim Owens, an officer with the nonprofit group Save Shem Creek.

The chamber made its recommendation after a written survey, and eight completed that and were interviewed in person about growth, infrastructure, affordable housing, the town’s Growth Management Plan and economic development.

Reach Robert Behre at (843) 937-5771 or at