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SC Realtors Association Addresses Greenville Tax Flap




By FITSNEWS || This week we ran a guest column from Upstate, S.C. limited government advocate Joshua Cook blasting the S.C. Realtors (SCR) for its involvement in a tax hike vote in Greenville County.

According to Cook, the Realtors ran an advertisement inaccurately claiming that groceries would be exempted from the proposed levy – which the group is supporting (and Cook is opposing).

We received a response to Cook’s column today from Nick Kremydas, who referred us to a statement from the Realtors about the discrepancy released earlier this week.

According to the organization, the Realtors’ association based its ad on materials disseminated by Greenville County government. In fact, government leaders presented a fact sheet on the tax hike to the public in which it expressly claimed that food was among the exempted items.

“The sales tax would not be collected on rent payments, mortgage, food, medicine, income taxes, property taxes, gasoline or utilities,” the document stated.

The only problem?  The government lied.

Unless food purchases in Greenville County are made with government subsidies, they would still be subject to an additional one cent tax per dollar.

“SCR is disappointed that information provided by local government about one part of the one-penny sales tax was incorrect,” a statement from the Realtors reads.  “SCR has updated our information to reflect this clarification. SCR has asked local officials to correct this information and ensure voters have all the correct facts as they prepare to vote on this important issue.”

Beyond the statement, Kremydas took issue with Cook’s characterization of his group’s mail piece.

“(We) discovered the county’s error and issued a press release days ago addressing the error,” Kremydas told FITS.  “We weren’t ‘busted’ – we brought the error to light.  I don’t like our association’s integrity being questioned, when we make mistakes we admit and correct them.”

Fair points …