Letter to the Editor
Last year Edgefield established a community based group called “TEAM,” Together Edgefield Achieves More, to formulate and implement economic development projects. Our two major goals are to:
- Build a strong and stable economic base through the attraction of jobs, investment and develop a diverse mix of business.
- Enhance the downtown’s role as the Town’s business and cultural center by assisting existing businesses and attracting new business and uses.
We feel the best way to achieve these goals is for the Town to establish a TIF development plan to reverse the declining tax base and improve the economy throughout Edgefield County . The TEAM endorses the plan, which should increase tax revenues, create jobs and reverse the decline for areas both inside and out of the TIF.
We have enclosed a list of answers to questions that have been raised about the TIF which should help you understand why we endorse this plan. We hope that you will help us in communicating the benefits of the TIF Development Plan with our community’s citizens through your widely-read newspaper. We would welcome the opportunity to discuss this project with your staff or any citizens who would like additional information about the TIF or the TEAM’s future plans.
James Earl Kennamer Roger Timpson Doug Timmerman
Gloria Bynum Susan Yarborough David Tollison
Rev. Jasper Lloyd Caroline Bland Rev. Stacy Williams
Alva Lewis John Ellis Jim Martin
Sam Crouch Richard Shaffer Beth Padgett
Beth Worth Jennifer Sumner Craig McMullin
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
- Why should the Town of Edgefield pursue the TIF development plan? Currently the property values in the TIF are declining or stagnant. The TIF will help improve the economy and increase employment within and outside the TIF area.
- I don’t live in Edgefield so why should I support the TIF development plan? The improvements in the TIF area will induce private investment and development which will increase the tax revenue long term for the County and Schools. Those not living in the TIF area will not experience any tax increases.
- Regardless of where I live in the County will my taxes go up? No, only property that is improved within the TIF area will see their taxes increase.
- Will any county or school money be used on the TIF projects? No, only money from the Town of Edgefield will be used to support these projects.
- I don’t own property within the TIF designated area; will any of my taxes go toward the funding of the TIF instead of the schools or county? All of the tax dollars from property outside the TIF designated area will continue to support the operations of the schools and county. Only the 105 properties within the TIF area will support the projects planned for the TIF area.
- Will the 105 properties within the TIF continue to support the school and county at their current level? Yes, the property taxes currently collected will continue to be distributed to the school and county operations and are not reduced by the TIF creation.
- Will any of the TIF money be spent on private property? TIF funds can only be spent on public improvements and public property.
- Who will decide on where the TIF money will be spent? The TIF requires a redevelopment plan that details where and how the money will be spent. The Town will follow this plan.
- What are the future benefits to both the County and the Town of Edgefield? New development will increase tax revenues and create jobs for areas both inside and outside of the TIF area.
- If the TIF development is not approved what are the future projections for tax dollars to the schools and the county based on recent history? Over the past ten years tax revenue has increased by 1.1% versus inflationary increases of 21.9% for the TIF properties. Thus producing a property tax loss of 20.8%. If this is projected over another 10 years the revenue loss to the county and schools will be about $40,000 per year.