County Council's priorities mixed up

info@islandpacket.comNovember 14, 2013 

Beaufort County Council works hard on pet projects while other projects are ignored. For example, seven months have elapsed since siphoning of library funds ($590,000 in the past two years) was discovered. The county's Finance Committee refuses to close loopholes which permit this to continue. And four months have elapsed since errors by the Finance Committee chairman derailed the promised partial restoration of library hours. It has been years since the discovery of $2 million in general fund money going to the airport. Repeated requests for cures have been stalled by the Finance Committee.

Contrast that with council's vigor on pet projects, including the Finance Committee chair's push for $31,000 in Heritage tournament loan interest forgiveness, the $850,000 Project Robot, for which no analysis has ever been seen, plans for a terminal expansion at Hilton Head Airport despite shrinking business there and the push to include a controversial runway in the plan for the Lady's Island airport. Now, an agricultural tax exemption is being rushed through without analysis. How much will this cost the rest of us?

Councilmen Stu Rodman, Paul Sommerville, and Jerry Stewart are key players in condoning these activities. Candidates in Districts 2, 6 and 11 should register March 16-30, 2014, to oppose their third terms.

Steven M. Baer

Hilton Head Island

Editor's Note: Baer is a former member of Beaufort County Council.

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