Town of Lexington SC
111 Maiden Lane
Lexington, SC 29072
August 21, 2015
Dear Mr. Mayor and Council:
Like you, the members of the Greater Lexington Chamber are concerned about the rapidly increasing volume of traffic on roads in and around the Town of Lexington. This increased volume, which has been caused in large part by Lexington’s superior schools, business-friendly environment and overall quality of life, has resulted in a situation that if not addressed will adversely affect the flow of goods, services, customers, emergency services personnel, and overall economic development.
The Chamber commends Council for its efforts to address this extremely important issue through the imposition of a hospitality tax within the Town. We recognize Council’s frustration that there are limited to no funds available from federal or state sources to assist local governments with needed road and infrastructure improvements, and acknowledge that the imposition of a hospitality tax is the only available source which at the present time has the potential to raise the necessary funds for the improvement projects. While no citizen or business embraces the idea of a tax increase, the hospitality tax will allow for a majority of those using our roads–Town residents and non-residents alike–to contribute to funding these much needed improvements.
We are pleased that Council has selected projects that will complement the soon to be implemented “smart signaling system”. Moreover, the key components of Council’s proposal that underlie our support of the plan include:
- The three projects are clearly defined and address key traffic concerns in the Town that will help our membership better serve their customer base;
- The inclusion of a “sunset” provision to eliminate the tax on December 31, 2023. Such a provision evidences the Council’s commitment to constructing only the three identified projects;
- The commitment to continue to seek alternative funding options from state or federal sources; and
- Council’s indication that you are committed to eliminating the tax prior to the sunset date should these additional federal or state funding options come available.
Moreover, the citizens and businesses of the Town should be pleased that their property taxes will not be increased to pay for these improvements that benefit the entire region.
Again, we thank the Council for your efforts to address this important issue for our community and welcome the opportunity to be of continued support to Town Council in its economic development and quality of life initiatives.
Chair, Board of Directors
cc: Board of Directors
Randy Halfacre, President & CEO