The Riley Files: Corrected


Published on

  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

The Riley Files: Corrected

  1. 1. MISLEADING! • Three times the South Carolina State Supreme Court has declared the Town of James Island illegal. During the period of litigation each time, the Town received funds that were taken from the taxpayers of Charleston, Mt. Pleasant, North Charleston and the other legally incorporated areas in the county. WRONG! • 17,847 James Islanders have already joined the City of Charleston. The City has always welcomed new citizens and will continue to welcome the many James Islanders who are now petitioning to join. WRONG! • What is causing concern in the areas of James Island that were part of the defunct town is crime. A major reason for the current wave of annexation requests is the police protection offered by the City of Charleston. Our 412-officer police department has devoted Team 3 to James and Johns Island – 44 patrol officers and CSI, SWAT, Traffic, Underwater Recover Unit, Victim Services and special units responding 24/7 to citizen needs. • The quotes included in these articles come from the former Mayor and a former Councilmember of the defunct town. The automated phone call from their web site is, of course, patently meaningless.
  2. 2. WRONG AND MISLEADING! • This reference from a blog is to a 4-year-old story, although it attempts to imply that the proposed increase is a current one. • The City of Charleston has increased property taxes only once since 1999 – in 2008, and the increase was quite modest. Few cities can match Charleston’s record of fiscal prudence and accomplishment. – Charleston was the first city in South Carolina to get a Triple A credit rating from Standard and Poor’s. And Charleston got this rating at the height of the economic downturn. – Charleston’s property tax rate has decreased from 129.8 mills in 1999 to 79.1 mills in 2011. MISLEADING! • The truth is that Mayor Riley opposed the repeal of the point of sale provision of the 2006 legislation. The repeal of this legislation would have made our tax code patently unfair by giving a huge tax advantage to the wealthiest property owners and shifting the burden of property taxes to middle class and working class homeowners. Mayor Riley supported compromise legislation, which protected the middle class from this unfair tax policy, and it passed the General Assembly in 2011.
  3. 3. WRONG! • These figures are for the Charleston-North Charleston- Summerville Metropolitan Statistical Area – in other words, they are meaningless for the City of Charleston. WRONG! • This is a quote from a two-time, unsuccessful candidate for Mayor, who has been a long-time opponent. • Riley’s record on job creation is outstanding and ongoing. As recently as October 24th, he announced the relocation of a high tech company—PeopleMatter—to King Street. The project will add 265 jobs and $18.8 million in capital investment over the next four years and will be the largest privately held technology company on the peninsula. • The Digital Corridor’s accomplishments in the City have been remarkable. Flagship I and Flagship II, the City’s premier co- working facilities, have housed and/or graduated nearly 40 knowledge-based companies. The Digital Corridor now has 70 businesses and more than 3,000 jobs. • The City’s Horizon project, in concert with MUSC and SCRDA, is working to turn the groundbreaking research at MUSC into a major biotech center close by that will provide hundreds of new, high-paying jobs in private industry.
  4. 4. WRONG! • Another unsupported quote from a long-time opponent. • The City has set up a program through the Planning Department to provide every significant development or business project an individual staff member to shepherd them through every step of the permit process. It has been very successful. • Businesses are not staying away, but coming in large numbers. And the City also takes great care to assist existing as well as new businesses, large and small, throughout the City. Last year our Office of Business Services provided significant business assistance to 560 businesses in the City. • The Local Development Corporation lent nearly $1.5 million to 44 businesses in 2010. Just this month it received $1 million in new Federal financing that will enable it to offer more loans.
  5. 5. MISLEADING! • This matter was on Sullivan’s Island and had nothing to do with the City of Charleston. WRONG! • This attempted smear cites a 4-year-old column and shamelessly cuts out the first eleven words of this very sentence: “To my knowledge, no one has ever accused him of corruption, …”
  6. 6. WRONG! • The UDAG program was designed to encourage new private investment in cities experiencing severe economic distress. The Charleston Place loan was structured to create the incentive for the revitalization of downtown Charleston. The loan agreement was like many others in the U.S. at the same time. Interest is accruing on the loan and will be repaid to the Local Development Corporation for the benefit of the citizens of Charleston. The loan is not in arrears. • The impact of Charleston Place has been beyond our most optimistic expectations. Besides the job creation and direct impact ton the tax base as a result of the project, other benefits haven derived through the increased private investment in the downtown, indirect job creation, and improved quality of life.
  7. 7. WRONG! • Specific Charleston Place numbers include: – In 1979, there were 32 businesses in the surrounding area – in 2009, there were 266. – In 1979, the average appraised value of properties was $118,221 – in 2009 the average was $2,582,405. – In 1979, the total appraised value of properties in the area was approximately $13 million – in 2009, it was $392.1 million. – In 1979, the assessment for the area was $791,595 – in 2009, it was $22,122,900. – Other financial benefits to the City have been realized from fees – business license, hospitality, accommodation, local option, etc. • In 2010, Charleston Place alone provided the following numbers: – 402 employees - $11.8 million payroll – 100 jobs in the retail spaces – 2009 property taxes - $1.477 million – 2009 sales, use & hospitality taxes - $4.027 million – Local hotel purchases $12.56 million.
  8. 8. WRONG! • Charleston was put on a ‘watch list’ by two organizations that were heavily pressured by a small group of Charleston citizens who oppose cruise ships. The ‘watch list’ status does not label Charleston as a ‘threatened cultural site.’ Charleston is, in fact, a heralded cultural site as evidenced by its placement by Conde’ Nast Traveler readers as the Number One most favorite city to visit in the United States. Charleston has also been named the Most Livable City in America, the Best Southern City, and among the Best Cities in Which to Do Business, the Top 10 Cities for Technology Jobs, the Best Performing Cities, the Best Places to Live and Work for Young Professionals; the Best Food and Wine Destinations in the World, and the Best Places to Retire in the South. WRONG! • The SELC representation is totally wrong. Cruise ships do not pollute Charleston harbor. They are regulated through extensive federal and international laws and regulations, governing every waste stream and discharge. • There is no evidence that existing regulations are either ineffective or insufficient to protect our environment. MISLEADING! • There is broad-based support throughout the community for the Union Pier Concept Plan and Mayor Riley’s support of it. The vast majority of Charlestonians recognize and appreciate the value of the opportunity to have this property available for public and private use, to have more access to Charleston’s historic waterfront, and to have the benefit of the jobs and economic vitality that the Union Pier plan can provide.
  9. 9. WRONG! • Gaillard Auditorium is not taking one dime from the Septima Clark – it’s actually increasing the funds available by allowing the City to extend the tax increment financing district. • The Crosstown is U.S. 17 – a state and federal highway and responsibility. Nonetheless, the City has put together a comprehensive funding plan that involves state, federal and city resources. Complete funding approvals are expected within the next several months. • Meanwhile, the City has spent or committed $125 million on 33 major drainage capital improvements. Largest projects completed include: – Ardmore drainage improvement project – Concord Street Pump Station – Byrnes Down drainage improvements – Playground Road Pump Station – Church Creek drainage improvement project • The next major projects to be completed are: – Forest Acres ─ Market Street – Septima Clark/Crosstown ─ Calhoun Street West • Annually the City cleans 132 miles of ditches and 131 miles of storm drain pipes. • Another unsupported quote from the aforementioned long- time opponent.
  10. 10. WRONG! • Infrastructure has always been a high priority for Mayor Riley. He fought hard to get the new Cooper River Bridge built and was instrumental in the new bridge including special lanes for walkers and bicyclists. • Drainage has been a very high priority. The issue is complex, and the solutions are extremely expensive. Nevertheless, the City has spent or committed more than $125 million on 33 major drainage capital improvements. • The largest projects completed include: – Ardmore drainage improvement project – Concord Street Pump Station – Byrnes Down drainage improvements – Playground Road Pump Station – Church Creek drainage improvement project • The next major projects to be completed are: – Forest Acres – Market Street – Septima Clark/Crosstown – Calhoun Street West • Even though the Crosstown (Highway 17) is a state and federal highway and responsibility, the City has put together a comprehensive funding plan that involves state, federal, and city resources. Complete funding approvals are expected within the next several months.