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Resolution: Preserving City Council's right to address county millage on P&R services

Published on Thursday, January 30, 2014

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Resolution: Preserving City Council's right to address county millage on P&R services
RESOLUTION NUMBER 1-2014


A RESOLUTION TO PRESERVE THE CITY OF GREER COUNCIL’S

RIGHT TO ADDRESS A COUNTY MILLAGE LEVIED UPON

PROPERTY WITHIN THE CITY’S JURISDICTION FOR RECREATION

AND PARKS SERVICES

 

WHEREAS, S.C. Code §4-9-30, which designates the powers and limitations of county governments, provides: Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary, the county council shall not finance any service not being rendered by the county on March 7, 1973, by a countywide tax where the service is being provided by any municipality within that municipality or where the service has been budgeted or funds have been applied for as certified by the municipal governing body, except upon the concurrence of the municipal governing body.

; and

WHEREAS, Greenville County Council was not providing recreation and parks services on March 7, 1973, nor has it undertaken to do so in the intervening years until 2013;

and

WHEREAS, the city of Greer had been providing and paying for parks and recreation services for several decades prior to March 7, 1973, was doing so on that date, and has continued to budget such funds at all times since then, including the current fiscal and tax years;

and

WHEREAS, Greenville County Council and the Greenville County Recreation District Commission, which was established under Act 1329 of 1968, collaborated in their support for the passage of Act 20 of 2013, which allows a recreation commission to transfer to a county council the district’s assets and liabilities, and which allows the County Council to accept those assets and liabilities;

and

WHEREAS, Greer City Council did not support or endorse the passage of Act 20 0f 2013;

and

WHEREAS, the Greenville County Recreation District Commission and Greenville County

Council, by separate resolutions adopted in the summer of 2013, achieved the transfer of assets and liabilities from that recreation commission to that council, and the Greenville County Government thereupon absorbed the personnel and programs of the Greenville County Recreation District;

and

WHEREAS, the millage of the Greenville County Recreation District for the most recent tax years had been 4.7 mils, that millage was listed on tax notices as a tax for that district and not as a “county tax,” and that millage was not levied on properties situated inside the boundaries of municipalities providing their own recreation and park services, including the city of Greer;

and

WHEREAS, the most recent tax notices of the Greenville County Tax Collector’s Office establishes the Greenville County Council has raised county taxes for properties in the municipal boundary of the city of Greer by 4.6 mils, and it is clear that such increase is solely because Greenville County Council has now undertaken to levy a countywide tax for recreation and parks services, but without first seeking or receiving the concurrence of Greer City Council even though such concurrence is required by S.C. Code §4-9-30;

and

WHEREAS, a representative of Greenville County and a representative of the city of Greer have nevertheless had exploratory conversations on how to apply the additional 4.6 mils in county taxes being levied on owners of property in the city of Greenville for recreation and parks purposes, but no mutually agreed upon plan has yet been achieved;

and

WHEREAS, Greer City Council sees an opportunity to re-evaluate in a collaborative manner the scope of city and county recreational programs and the location of their respective parks and facilities in order to improve the efficiency and availability of such programs and locations without regard to the jurisdiction of the users;

and

WHEREAS, the two governing bodies have not yet reached mutually satisfactory arrangements on those issues but could do so in the ensuing months, if both parties act with reasoned judgment;

and

WHEREAS, Greer City Council nevertheless desires to establish for the public record its position on this important issue and to preserve its right to withhold its concurrence from the newly levied county taxes if such taxes in the long run do not accrue to the interests and well-being of city residents and property owners;

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED BY THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF GREER, SOUTH CAROLINA, Greer City Council declares its intent to preserve its statutory entitlement to withhold consent and at the appropriate time to challenge the levy of a county tax for recreation and park purposes on property within the jurisdiction of the city of Greer. No consent shall be provided until a satisfactory plan stating the uses of funds derived from the new county tax is agreed upon by and between Greer City Council and Greenville County Council. City Council authorizes the City Administrator, or his designee, to continue discussions with authorized representatives of Greenville County on the short and long range goals to be achieved by the county tax for recreation and park purposes on property within the City’s limits. In the event the County provides no services or makes available no facilities to city residents in a manner commensurate with the new taxes being required, then the City reserves the right to take further action as may be reasonable and appropriate. The City Administrator is instructed to report to City Council on an ongoing basis as to the progress, if any, being made. Nothing contained in this Resolution shall be construed to limit the right of an adversely affected taxpayer to address the matter in any other way.

This resolution shall be effective upon approval by the Council of the City of Greer.

CITY OF GREER, SOUTH CAROLINA

_________________________

Richard W. Danner, Mayor

ATTEST:

___________________________________ Approval Date:

________________________

Tammela Duncan, Municipal Clerk

 

 

 

 

___________________________________

Edward R. Driggers, City Administrator

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