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Past Chairmen's Council endorses approval of Capital Project Sales Tax

The Past Chairmen’s Council of the Laurens County Chamber of Commerce (LCCC) was established in 1995 as a forum and sounding board for past chairpersons of the LCCC to discuss pertinent issues, policies and programs important to the work of the LCCC and, ultimately, important to the long-term improvement of the quality of life in Laurens County. The Past Chairmen’s Council supports approval of the referendum on the Capital Project Sales Tax (CPST) in Laurens County. It is important to note that, while the Past Chairmen’s Council supports the ongoing programs of the LCCC, it neither receives funding from nor contributes funding to the LCCC. While not every past chairman of the LCCC is on record in support of approval of the CPST, a majority of the Past Chairmen’s Council is in favor of CPST approval to fund capital projects that will clearly improve the health, safety and economic opportunity for the citizens of Laurens County.

Through the summer and fall of 2020, the LCCC Past Chairmen’s Council has participated in an extensive discussion and review of the Capital Project Sales Tax (CPST) referendum that will be on the ballot for consideration by Laurens County voters in the General Election on November 3, 2020. The CPST is a funding mechanism that allows county and municipal governments and other public interest groups to fund specific capital projects through the imposition of a one penny sales tax on certain goods and services sold within Laurens County. Items such as unprepared food, prescription drugs and gasoline are exempt from the tax but, upon approval by the voters, the CPST is projected to generate up to $35 million to fund 16 specific projects that will be listed on the ballot November 3, 2020. A listing of the projects is included as part of this statement.

The Past Chairmen’s Council fully endorses and supports the approval of the CPST in the election this November. Following is a statement, issued by the Council:

The capital needs of Laurens County are many, diverse and expensive. In an effort to address some of the most pressing of these projects, Laurens County Council and the governing municipal councils within the county launched an effort earlier this year to bring the CPST before the people in a public vote. A six-member CPST Commission, appointed by Laurens County Council with a specific number recommended by municipal councils, has met many times since December 2019 to receive and review applications from governments and groups from throughout the county.

The 16 projects vetted and approved by the CPST Commission include major capital projects totaling in the millions of dollars and smaller, more targeted projects that will immediately improve the health, safety and economic growth of our county. The CPST allows the county to impose a more broadly based sales tax to fund these projects, rather than the narrower and more severe property tax that is the traditional method of funding such projects locally. It is estimated that up to 40 percent of the revenue for the CPST will be paid by persons from outside of Laurens County.

The Past Chairmen’s Council of the Laurens County Chamber of Commerce supports and endorses the approval of the CPST and urges the voters of the county to vote in favor of the referendum this November.

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