In March, Lake and Main questioned the legal residence of Town Councilman Ted Stambolitis. It was pointed out that Councilman Stambolitis had built a home outside the town limits and, if he made this his primary residence, he would have to resign his seat on Town Council. It now appears he has done the former, but not the latter.
As noted in our previous post, the South Carolina Attorney General found in 2008 that
…a member of Town Council … must be a resident of the Town. Moreover, if during a member’s term he fails to satisfy the required qualifications, Section 5-7-200 of the South Carolina Code (2004) requires that he or she forfeit the office.
Current tax records clearly show that the Councilman identifies his home at 545 Pininsula Dr. in Gilbert as his primary residence. Further, it shows him taking the 4% assessment ratio, which is reserved for a primary residence.
State law clearly states:
The South Carolina Constitution provides for the following ratios to be applied to the market or use value of property to arrive at the assessed value:
Your home (legal residence) 4%
Second home (or any residential property where you do not live) 6%
The 4% ratio is for residential property -a dwelling -occupied by the owner. Not Commercial or “Business Personal Property,” but residential.
Further, Councilman Stambolitis has also listed his home on Raymond Circle in Lexington as his primary residence. The difference is that the owners of the home within the town limits are listed as the Councilman and his wife, whereas the lakefront home is owned by “Stambolitis Family Revocable Trust.” In both cases, the “December 31, 2015 Owner” is Ted and Angela Stambolitis.
Apparently, the Councilman is gaming the system by claiming his family trust lives on Pininsula Drive, but he does not. He is illegally retaining his seat on Town Council by using tricks voters in this area have long and loudly opposed. We expect and deserve more honesty from our elected officials.
It is beyond reason to believe that Stambolitis does not live on his lakefront property. The legal machination used to allow him to skirt the law are clever, but unethical and dishonest.
Councilman Stambolitis should do the right thing by and for the citizens of the Town of Lexington and resign his seat.