SC

Lexington SC Seeks Tax Hike

TOWN CLAIMS REVENUE IS NEEDED FOR ROAD PROJECTS … || By FITSNEWS || The town of Lexington, S.C. is looking to impose a new two-cent “hospitality tax” on prepared food within its city limits – a $2.1 million annual levy it claims will fund various road projects. Sheesh … this…

TOWN CLAIMS REVENUE IS NEEDED FOR ROAD PROJECTS …

|| By FITSNEWS || The town of Lexington, S.C. is looking to impose a new two-cent “hospitality tax” on prepared food within its city limits – a $2.1 million annual levy it claims will fund various road projects.

Sheesh … this scam again?  Seriously?

A gasoline tax was defeated at the state level earlier this year (thanks to S.C. Senator Tom Davis) while Lexington County voters rejected at county-wide sales tax hike last November.

Voters will have no say in this tax hike, however …

It will be decided exclusively by Lexington’s town council – which consists of mayor Steve MacDougall, mayor pro-tem Hazel Livingston and council members Kathy Maness, Todd Shevchik, Todd Carnes and Ron Williams.

And if they approve it, it could begin being collected as early as next month.

We don’t live within the town limits of Lexington, nor do we have occasion to visit the town often.  So the tax hike doesn’t directly affect us.  But those who would be affected by it aren’t pleased.

In fact one local resident made her displeasure perfectly clear to us …

“If that tax passes, I may buy my groceries in Lexington County, but I won’t be spending a PENNY in restaurants,” she told us.  “I’ll cook my own damn food that’s taxed enough already.”

Good for her …

***

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43 comments

False Bravado September 9, 2015 at 9:08 am

“If that tax passes, I may buy my groceries in Lexington County, but I won’t be spending a PENNY in restaurants,” she told us. “I’ll cook my own damn food that’s taxed enough already.”

People who claim this annoy me to no end. Within a week she’ll be picking up coffee and a muffin from Starbucks for breakfast, a quarter pounder meal from McDonalds for lunch, and a burrito from Moe’s for dinner.

She’ll cook her own food that’s taxed enough already… at 0%. How do these mouth breathers think government affords to maintain shit? Magic?

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CorruptionInColumbia September 9, 2015 at 2:05 pm

Proper (honest) budgeting, maybe?

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Maybe, Maybe Not September 10, 2015 at 8:59 am

Balanced budgets are great, and we should definitely have one. The problem is that people who are anti-tax pretty much think this is the proper solution every single time. At some point you are limited by your budget no matter how balanced it might be, though.

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CorruptionInColumbia September 10, 2015 at 2:51 pm

This is because of people such as are found on Lexington Town Council and people on LexCo Council such as Johnny Jeffcoat and Debbie Summers who believe that raising taxes is the proper sout ion to every single issue, every time.

Many of us barely keep our heads above water from day to day, as it is. These ass holes don’t care that they may literally be nickle-and-diming us to death.

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Charlie Speight September 10, 2015 at 10:57 pm

Hmmm, even though the Town has not raised property taxes in 28 years and the millage rate has been REDUCED twice.

Charlie Speight September 10, 2015 at 10:55 pm

The Town of Lexington always has a balanced budget. It’s the law.

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DBL07 Consulting September 30, 2015 at 11:23 am
False Bravado September 9, 2015 at 9:08 am

“If that tax passes, I may buy my groceries in Lexington County, but I won’t be spending a PENNY in restaurants,” she told us. “I’ll cook my own damn food that’s taxed enough already.”

People who claim this annoy me to no end. Within a week she’ll be picking up coffee and a muffin from Starbucks for breakfast, a quarter pounder meal from McDonalds for lunch, and a burrito from Moe’s for dinner.

She’ll cook her own food that’s taxed enough already… at 0%. How do these mouth breathers think government affords to maintain things? Magic?

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No New Taxes September 9, 2015 at 9:15 am

How do these mouth breathers in government think the tax payers can afford new taxes? Magic?

How about new revenue streams. a lot of small towns across the country are establishing their own highspeed internet utility companies to compete with ATT, Comcast, Charter, and all the other companies that dont compete with each other so they can price gouge you. And they are making a killing off of it.

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Taxpayers Anonymous September 9, 2015 at 10:30 am

Taxpayers can afford it, this is Lexington after all, not Allendale. Lexington has been growing for years now, more people means more costs to keep things running. The population has increased to the point where a nominal increase could result in plenty of money.

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truthmonger September 9, 2015 at 10:41 am

There’s a LOT of people in Lexington who CAN’T afford it. Not everyone is rich, and not everyone has gotten cost-of-living raises to keep up with expenses. And it isn’t about keeping things running, but rather buying flashy new toys and making sure that excess money goes into the pockets of certain people. I grew up in Lexington, and it’s a crying shame to see it go the way of Columbia.

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CorruptionInColumbia September 9, 2015 at 1:45 pm

^ What he said!!!! ^

If You Can't Afford It... September 10, 2015 at 8:54 am

“There’s a LOT of people in Lexington who CAN’T afford it.”

Come on. Be real. If they can’t afford a small hospitality tax added to their restaurant bill then it is questionable whether or not they were able to afford going out to eat without it. The only way you are going to spend tons of money on this tax is if you go out to eat all the time, and if you’re doing that then chances are you are well off. If this were an unavoidable, across the board tax increase for everyone like sales tax or property tax I would agree with you, but it isn’t.

Agree or disagree with the tax, but leave the hyperbole for another issue.

Charlie Speight September 11, 2015 at 4:03 am

Two cents on the dollar. That comes to a buck more for a $50 meal. It’s 34 cents more of an extra large Papa John’s deluxe pizza.

CorruptionInColumbia September 9, 2015 at 1:42 pm

How about proper budgeting and prioritizing of the funds they do have, with more money used on necessities and less on frivolous stuff? That is what the citizens who are being robbed by the self-serving scum listed in the article have to do when they find that their funds are running low. Unlike city or county councils, taxpayers cannot just decide to make somebody else give them more money under threat of armed force when they run low. If they did, the same thing would happen to them that should happen to these crooks on council. At a minimum, they would be in jail.

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Charlie Speight September 10, 2015 at 10:54 pm

Cut where? Look at the budget posted online and find the fluff.

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Clem September 9, 2015 at 9:20 am

No vote? What’s up with that?

I can avoid buying stuff in Lex. and I will. They will survive without my business, but I will stop anyway.

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TroubleBaby September 9, 2015 at 9:33 am

No one should be surprised that gov’t will take your money whether you vote for it or not.

The taxpayer is their servant, not the other way around.

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Superfly September 9, 2015 at 9:34 am

The SC General Assembly routinely strips revenue from local governments, i.e., property tax “reform”, guts Aid to Subdivisions funding from previously agreed to formulas, mandates provision of all kinds of services to be provided by locals, fails to maintain state owned roads, bridges, rights-of-way, and residents/taxpayers demand/require more services.

You have to pay for it some kind of way, and they can’t increase millage rates on property, beyond state government determined rates of inflation every year, unless a new service is added, i.e., new fire station in a growing area of town. There aren’t many choices for local leaders, and they sure as hell are more accountable to voters than any other level of government.

This way, the free riders from the unincorporated areas that ring the Town will contribute when they eat dinner in a restaurant. I might add, that if annexation laws were rationale in South Carolina, this would alleviate some of the fiscal pressures on local governments.

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nitrat September 9, 2015 at 9:57 am

This is what happens when legislators (and, Congressmen) sign Grover Norquist’s No New Taxes pledge.

THEY are hogtied and THEY hogtie every city and county government and citizen that they CLAIM to represent…and, the ONLY person they REALLY represent is Grover Norquist.

BUT, this would not be possible if the VOTERS didn’t willfully and ignorantly turn the operation and control of their local governments over to a Washington lobbyist by voting for the people who sign his pledge.

Take. Your. Government. Back…from Grover Norquist.

Stop voting for his pledge signers!

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hooka shoes September 9, 2015 at 12:31 pm

aka gambling ring revenue gap insurance.

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Philip Branton September 9, 2015 at 1:40 pm

Hmm………the gas stations in Lexington need to be GEO tagged on a FITNEWS map and have the monthly fuel delivery monitored to keep accurate tabs on just how much gas taxes are being generated and then use FOI to track how the funds are spent in REAL TIME….!! We are FED up…..!!!!

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Charlie Speight September 10, 2015 at 10:52 pm

Town gets NOTHING from gas taxes.

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Philip Branton September 11, 2015 at 12:21 am

Charlie, there are other dominoes to consider. The city may not actually touch the tax funds but roads do get built and upgraded and those roadways have EASEMENTS..!

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Charlie Speight September 11, 2015 at 3:55 am

Easements don’t play in these projects as much as if they were new construction. Much of the easement issues were negotiated when the roads were first built. Understand these are intersection improvements. There will be some minor redirection for one and more involved in another. It is necessary for people to also understand that the projects as depicted are CONCEPTUAL. Extensive traffic studies, computer modeling and engineering reviews must first be done to determine the final design. Easement issues will be included in those studies.

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Philip Branton September 11, 2015 at 8:01 am

Bravo Charlie……..Bravo! +50 points…! You do realize its the political “clout” by those involved with having certain “royalty” residual background that enables political leverage. Its the very VOTERS that have no clue of this type of taxation double dipping. Much like you buying property in Michigan and never being told about the SHALE value beneath the property you bought unless you LOOKED at a map and started wondering about that fracking taxation revenue and profit potential. Dare to wonder why Detroit is so poor when in fact it is just like ALASKA…!! You go Charlie…..

Charlie Speight September 11, 2015 at 9:54 am

Uh…. yeah. Sure.

Charlie Speight September 14, 2015 at 6:26 pm

They’re moving to Michigan and specifically Detroit because of the collapsed economy and cheap real estate. If they wanted oil, why aren’t they moving to Alaska.

Guest September 9, 2015 at 2:16 pm

The joke is that sign posted in this article – the cost was nearly 3/4th of a cool million – but that sign is really very important since the “TOWN” of Lexington had recently incorporated all land (including a bunch of commercial property) all the way to I-20 on 378. And nothing better than to announce that new boundary with a VERY EXPENSIVE SIGN. We voted against these numbnuts increasing the sales tax to pay for roads in the last election (by a 2 to 1 margin) – I suppose it will be up to us to vote to displace these numbnuts during the next election – it appears that the last numbnut mayor that we voted out of office is in favor of the tax – that would be half-brain Halfacre. Amazingly, they voted for a traffic circle yet have no clue if that is the best option yet (these idiots will probably want to put STOP signs at each entrance vs. Yield signs and make the circle spin on a dime (i.e. too small) – the county/town continues to issue building permits but still have NO long term infrastructure plan. I like that old Richard Pryor movie where the motto was to vote for “None of the Above” and it certainly applies in this case and especially true for ALL politicians

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TroubleBaby September 9, 2015 at 4:27 pm

$750K for a sign with some water art & plants?

Sometimes I wonder if I’m too cynical, then I read something like your post and I realize if anything I’m not cynical enough.

SMH.

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Charlie Speight September 10, 2015 at 11:05 pm

The sign was paid for by a special grant.

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Guest September 11, 2015 at 10:44 am

I know it was paid for by a special grant – but my goodness, do you not have a clue who pays for that “special grant” – that would be you, me and other joe taxpayers. What ever happened to the standard green signs of “Welcome to X” – yes it is pretty but do you not think that these monies could have been spent more efficiently.

Again, the issue that I have Lexington and Lex County is that there is quite frankly no long term infrastructure plan. Have you looked at your cable and phone bills lately and looked at the ever increasing “franchise” or other like fees – these are tax additions piled on by your local politicians. But instead of these politicians trying to figure out why the road tax increase failed at the ballot box this past year, they decided to short cut and circumvent the process by taxing us directly (and still not fixing the underlying issues). Where are the studies that these THREE road fixes is going to greatly improve traffic flow in Lexington County? Drive out to the Saluda circle on 378 and see how badly they have screwed that up and think about what will happen at an even busier circle especially if it is not multilane and big enough – folks from Europe know how to drive on these circles, but not folks in the US – I have driven on rotaries in the UK and even in Madrid (where a few have 4 to 5 lanes and they are somewhat a CF with folks changing lanes in the circle but folks know how to navigate these rotaries. This will simply not happen. It may improve localized traffic in the area being improved but for overall improvement, it will not make a dent. This set of 5 politicians will understand taxpayer fury at the next election.

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Charlie Speight September 11, 2015 at 10:59 am

I get it. You’r one of the entitlement class – like welfare. You want the government to provide serviced like police, fire protection, water sewer and roads, but you don’t want to pay for it. This is why we can’t have nice things. You want a house at the lake but not pay for more than a double wide in the woods.

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Lone Ranger September 9, 2015 at 5:32 pm

As Lexington Town Council ahem somehow omitted mention of
that 8 bil for roads they’re getting from S.C.

They joined the flag-ripping legislators—Joe Wilson—Nikki Haley
in that surprised November look…who?…me???

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Charlie Speight September 10, 2015 at 10:51 pm

Not true. The town got zero, the county got the 8.5 SPECIFICALLY for state-owned SECONDARY roads. Those conditions imposed by SCDOT. The projects for which this money is intended do not qualify for that money.

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Lone Ranger September 14, 2015 at 6:02 pm

Charlie kept shilling for Lexington’s TAX & SPEND
council members and was dumb enough to try to have you believe

That the 8.5 BIL Lexington County got for roads won’t be
used by the TOWN OF…what a web when you stoop to deceive !!!

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Charlie Speight September 14, 2015 at 6:24 pm

Million, not billion. Read the letter and the restrictions.
After this long, if it still has to be explained, you must be uncapable of understanding.

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Lone Ranger September 14, 2015 at 6:38 pm

Charlie was capable of graduating 8th grade but the reason he missed the ceremony was a beauty
He was busy out selling his SNAP for marijuana and–wait for it–he had to get to…jury duty !!!

Charlie Speight September 14, 2015 at 7:56 pm

Don’t be an asshole because I’m smarter than you.

Lone Ranger September 15, 2015 at 7:05 pm

Charlie like to use profanity a lot and smoked deceiver dope just like Obama
And when you do that–and are dumb as dirt–it’s a reflection on your mama !!!

Charlie Speight September 10, 2015 at 11:04 pm

Calls to council members were overwhelmingly in favor of the tax because it is the only way to fund needed traffic congestion. So to claim that those affected by it are not happy is not true.

And you left out Councilman Ted Stambolitis who is in the record as having favored the tax IF 10% of the revenue – $1.5 million – goes to an “industry committee.” That is a group of restaurant owners. Stambolitis owns the Flight Deck restaurant in Lexington. He also wanted another 10% to go for items not part of the intersection construction. It is the rest of the council that shot that down and mandated that 100% of the funds go to the purpose intended.

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Bingo Bob September 11, 2015 at 2:50 am

Charlie Speight–go back to your own blog that advocates taxes and spending and get off of FITS News. Town council should have put this out for a vote of the citizens. They didn’t because they knew the citizens would vote it down just like they voted down that pork-filled penny sales tax referendum. That’s not representation. The town has many ways it can cut costs. The police force is much larger than it needs to be. Why doesn’t the town and the county talk about consolidation of services to avoid duplication. Also, the town has bloated administrative staff. There are more administrators in Lexington than there are in other towns of this size. Third, crap like that stupid outdoor ampitheatre is the kind of pork that the voters rejected in November. If the council has money for something like that, as well as dog pissing parks then they don’t have roads as a priority and should. The town also invested in that traffic light signal system that has yet to be rolled out because after the money they spent they aren’t sure that it really does what they say it will do. Voters need to clean house in that town of tax and spend liberals, including McDougall who failed miserably trying to run restaurants as well as Maness, Carnes, the lady with all those last names, and Shevchik.

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