Guess who’s behind those misleading “Vote YES for Lower Taxes” signs that have been scattered across Dorchester County for the past few weeks?
The same folks on County Council who pushed it on November 5’s ballots, that’s who, and apparently for their own gain.
The initial proponents of the Local Option Sales Tax (LOST), which lowers property taxes but adds one percent to sales, are councilmen Bill Hearn and Jay Byars.
Both are members of and/or affiliates with the Charleston Trident Association of Realtors (see images).
And while the road signs don’t identify who’s paying for them, the print version of that same “Vote YES” ad, which is on the front page of the October 30 Journal Scene, declares it was “paid for by” the Association.
Next Tuesday, Dorchester County voters can vote on this option that will raise sales taxes by one percent while also slightly reducing property tax.
The Association’s claim of lower taxes resulting from this referendum is false. (Sorry, but “truth in advertising” laws don’t apply to political ads, which are protected in the category of free speech.) The one-percent increase in sales tax far surpasses savings from the lower rate on most property in the county. It will only reduce net taxes for owners of houses with far above-average values in tax appraisal.
And persons who don’t own their own houses (or vehicles or boats or vacation homes) will be paying a new tax with absolutely no tax break.
The lower property tax could be used by realtors (and real estate attorneys…and mortgage brokers) as a selling point, though, even to instigate new development in our already over-crowded/under-highway-ed Dorchester County. And which would only benefit those realtors (and real estate attorneys … and mortgage brokers).
Don’t let them force you to pay for their own gains.
Vote NO on November 5.