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IOP City Council Agenda July 28, 2020, 6 pm

July 25, 2020

Thank you all for watching our virtual meetings, we all miss our face to face interactions, however, we need to continue until we know we have the COVID-19 under control. We are fortunate to have well over 600 viewers during these virtual meetings and we have had a ton of email suggestions. While we have been accused of being “elitist” for closing the beaches for a temporaru emergency measure, as discussed with all local Charleston County Mayors, all wanting drastic steps to stem the tide of the COVID-19. This has nothing to do with our wanting the beach to ourselves, it is a public safety attempt that is due to an unprecedented pandemic that is affecting the world. These folks creating protests because they can’t park at the beach for 30 days should be ashamed. Ride a bike to the beach, take an Uber, you can still come to the beach. Everyone and most food and beverage businesses are being hurt the most. However, we are looking to take further steps as you can see on our agenda, we are looking to restrict parking further. According to the South Carolina Beachfront Management Act, we are to provide 6 parking places for every 1/8th of a mile of beach. We far exceed this requirement and are looking at reducing this number because of the total number of cars coming out here, and restricting the safety of emergency vehicles driving down Palm Blvd. SCDOT has given us the permission to do what is best for the health and safety of their community. Our emergency trucks getting stuck in traffic is a life and death situation when every second counts when someone has a stroke, heart attack or near drowning. By keeping day visitors cars to the oceanside of Palm, it opens up a safe pathway for our emergency vehicles. Plus, when we have our daily thunderstorms, everyone drives inland knowing that there is a secret shortcut to get off the island by driving through our neighborhoods. Well, let me say, after 60+ years living here, there are no short cuts, cars back up all over the interior roads, but what is worse, a child riding a bike or walking in the street is going to get hurt or worse. It is time for the IOP to take control because of the unbridled growth across the tri-counties by developers all telling their condo projects, apartment complexes and subdivisions that they are only 10-20 miles away from the 3 public beaches. Our 3 beaches are not growing, and we cannot handle more cars, so it is time to take control, limit parking and start charging for parking. All I keep hearing is that we are blocking everyone’s access to the public beaches, well, we will be controlling accesses for a safer beach experience and everyone will start having to pay for their day at the beach. It is not fair for our residents to have to cover police, rescuing, and picking up their trash. It is past time for everyone to help pay the cost. We want everyone to enjoy the beach, but remember, it is here 7 days a week, 12 months a year, so everyone does not have to all come on the weekends. So, please, quit thinking of yourselves, and start thinking about better transit methods to the beach, think about the communities you are impacting. We are all in this together, instead of protesting, lets work together in making the beach experience better. Several apps have been created and are improving with time. Download SCDOT511 to see the cameras as per traffic. Also, the tri-county council of Governments has created “BeachReach” which will by next year, tell you how many spaces are left to park in. In closing, carpool, ride a bike and come enjoy the beach. Mt Pleasant Councilman Gary Santos met with me last week to help create a better safer way to cycle to the beach. We, in conjunction with the counties Transportation Tax funds just made it safer to come off the IOP connector and not be in traffic, but created a safe sidewalk through a shaded park. Thank you all, and remember, these are first world problems, we have life pretty damn good. Thank you for allowing me to serve you as mayor. Excuse any grammatical errors, I am who I am. Cheers! Jimmy

IOP Ways and Means Agenda, July 21, 2020, 5 pm

July 20, 2020

IOP Ways and Means Agenda July 21 Thank you for allowing me to serve as your mayor and for a council who are working their tails off to do what is best for you, our residents. It is times like this, that we have to make hard decisions, that some may not like, but what we feel is best for the community based on sound medical expertise. And please, thank every city employee for the jobs that they are doing. Jimmy Carroll

IOP Special Revenue Public Hearing 5:45 Followed by Regular Council at 6 PM on June 23, 2020

June 20, 2020

Thank you everyone for understanding that due to COVID-19, we are having to hold our council meetings through Zoom and seen on live YouTube. We cannot have more than 10 in a room with proper social distancing, and now, actually, more of our residents are watching council and committee meetings than ever before. Please understand, when we go into Executive Session, which we try to do at the end of council, it is to discuss sensitive matters that require legal advice or for personnel matters. It is intended to to protect the innocent, assure confidentiality about sensitive matters. No decisions are made in Executive Session, but any decisions are made after coming out of Executive Session. Thank you for understanding that we are all experiencing this unprecedented pandemic and that we are all in this together. Please wear a mask when going into closed areas such as stores and maintain the proper social distancing of at least 6′. I’m proud of our city personnel and how well they have all done. In closing, please look at the Leola Hanbury Memorial Park at the foot of the connector. We used TST (Transportation Sales Tax) funds to make accessing or exiting the connector safer for pedestrians and cyclist. The park was paved with pervious sidewalks and has the grand oak tree lit up at night. We just planted some palm trees along the Public Works building to soften that look and we still have a little more landscaping to do, but it looks great! Be safe, Happy 4th of July! Jimmy

IOP Ways and Means Agenda, June 16th, 6pm, 2020 (Because of Covid-19, watch live on YouTube, by liking the City of Isle of Palms)

June 13, 2020

This is budget crunch time, lots of delays because of the Covid-19, but we are moving along, cannot be more proud of our city staff and council for pulling this together. Couple of big things, wage study for city employees wages to surrounding communities and also, the cost of moving the Wild Dunes sewer plant to 41st and Waterway. Even though the Water and Sewer Company are a stand alone enterprise, we have to approve any bonding. Thank you for allowing me to serve you, Jimmy

IOP City Council Agenda, Tuesday, May 26th, 6 pm

May 23, 2020

Wow, what a wild ride this has been but I cannot thank our city staff and employees for a job over, above and beyond what they thought their jobs were considering the Covid-19. I want to personally thank Charleston County Council Chairman Elliot Summey and Sheriff Al Cannon for helping us when we needed it. They sent out upon our request, extra deputies, 3 ATVs to supplement the ones we have, several portable messaging boards and an EMS stationed on the island for the Memorial Day Weekend. While throughout my life, Memorial Day Weekend, the 4th of July and Labor Day weekends are always busy, this year started off a week earlier due to the Governor’s stay at home mandate expiring, and his opening up the beaches. Yes, we were warned in writing that we could be subject to a lawsuit if we did not open up the public beach accesses, so we did what we had to do. On Friday, May 15th, we had a Zoom meeting with Folly Mayor Tim Goodwin, Sullivan’s Island’s Mayor Pat O’Neil, Chairman Summey to discuss our plans for a media campaign to promote social distancing, obeying parking regulations, and respecting our beaches and communities. Because of the pent up demand to be outside, after two months of forced stay at home, Saturday, May 16th was the most people I have ever seen on the beach, at any time of my 60+ years of living here, including holidays. In all of the city’s 67 years history, we held our first ever Saturday night, 8 pm council meeting with Chairman Summey, and Sheriff Cannon and we sped up what we had planned for the following weekend. They delivered everything we asked for within 12 hours, my hat is off to these leaders. But the blame is not with local leaders or the police, but I place the blame on the unbridled growth across the tri-county to every developer of condos, apartment complexes, and subdivisions, who all say the 3 public beaches are but a few miles away. Our beaches are not growing any larger. We all have limited parking. We cannot handle more people. Because of this, the Isle of Palms passed its first reading of increased parking fines from $50 to $100 and increased parking fees on the weekends from $12 to $15 in our lots and from $2 a hour to $2.50 at the meters. We will have second and final reading of the increased fees on the 29th, which will go into effect immediately. Next year, you will see the Isle of Palms go to paid parking at all public accesses. It’s past time for everyone to help us pay for police, rescue, public works and traffic for the public beaches. I truly wish we could do it by this summer but it is impossible. Just know, your council hears you and is taking fast actions. Thank you, Jimmy Carroll

IOP Ways and Means Agenda, May 19, 2020, 6 pm

May 16, 2020

The Isle of Palms was incorporated in 1953 by an act of the South Carolina Legislature. My parents moved here in 1959 after hearing about it from a shipmate of my father’s while in the Navy. He heard it was a utopic place to raise a family. In 1959, we had about 300 residents. Today, we have about 5,000 residents which quadruples in the summer due to vacation renters plus the thousands of day visitors, many changes have occurred over the last 67 years. While the island is basically built out, it is always changing, older houses going down, larger new ones being built. But to me, it is still a utopia, the place that will always be my home. People move here because they like what they see, the lifestyles, and low taxes. However, just this past year, we have had newcomers wanting to change the way we have done things over the last 67 years, because they know better. Our taxes are low because of non owner occupied homes and vacation rentals. Because of this unprecedented pandemic, the Covid-19 virus, we have lost revenue. However, we have weathered many storms over our 67 years of existence, hurricanes and recessions, yet here we are today, still the Isle of Palms. Just this year, we had committee assignment challenges that we never have had in our 67 years of history, now we have some wanting to change the number of council members, to save money. We do have a tight budget, we do have major projects that need to be done, a poorly built public safety building that cost 6.5 million to build, and 12 years later, costing somewhere between 5 and 6 million to repair. We have to rebuild the marina docks because of a horrible lease extension that lasts till 2045, and requires the city to pay for the cost of the docks that will cost the city around 3 million. We have sea level rise which is only increasing our flooding problems. We are now looking at our Phase III drainage project which entails building 3 drainage outfalls at 41st Ave, 36th Ave and 30th Ave. They will have flapper valves that prevent water intrusion and only let water flow out. This cost, 2.9 million. However, the drainage problem is much larger than just those 3 spots, we have to do the whole island. That alone could cost tens of millions. We have over 1300 homes with septic tanks, the estimate for sewering the island is around 45 million, not on our priority list right now. Other costly issues, cost of living increases for our personnel, they can’t afford to live out here, but have to travel daily to get here through all the traffic, not to mention, being courted by surrounding communities offering more money and less driving distances. (Please thank our city personnel every time you see them for a job well done) We have a beach that will always have to be re-nourished every 8-10 years, we have city assets that we need to maintain. This is the part that hurts, we will be seeing a tax increase sometime soon, we have to. Cutting two council positions is not the solution to our budget, we need diversity on council. We are raising parking fees shortly. Next year, we will see all day visitors paying for parking. This far offsets two council seats. We need to maintain those with history on the island to help those who recently moved here to better understand how the Isle of Palms became as great a place to live as it is. Is a tax increase bad, hell no, in fact, I currently pay $5,500 on my house, of which, the Isle of Palms gets just under $1,200. That means that I get police, fire, sanitation, recreation and a city staff for less than $100 a month. Yes, it is well past time to raise taxes. Even with a tax increase, we will still be the lowest in the area. Thank you for allowing me to serve as your mayor.

Isle of Palms Covid-19 Update #24

May 9, 2020


These last several months beginning in mid March have been trying. As promised, the city’s job was to lower the curve of the spread of the virus. We have constantly updated our residents, on March 20th during an Emergency council meeting, through our first Emergency Order 2020-01, we limited access to the island beginning March 21 to help protect both our residents and public safety officers and first responders. On March 26th through Emergency Order 2020-02, we eliminated short term rentals of 29 days or less. On March 31st, as per the Governor’s Executive Order 2020-16, all beach and waterway accesses were closed. On April 19th, the Isle of Palms, Sullivan’s Island, Folly Beach and Edisto Island issued a joint statement in contrast to the Governor’s opening of beach access, all 4 communities remain committed to maintain their checkpoints to just those who live on the island or who have business here on the island. On April 20th, the IOP through Emergency Ordinance 2020-03 began allowing residents and property owners to have access to the beach between 7am and 7pm for exercise, dog walking, surfing and other recreational activities. Non residents may do the same before 7am and after 7pm. There shall be no sitting in chairs or laying on beach towels or groups larger than 3 unrelated. On April 28th and starting on May 1, the IOP extended the beach access for non residents from 7am to 8am and beginning at 5pm as opposed to 7pm, to give non residents 3 more beach hours. On May 4th, the IOP city council decided to lift checkpoints as of May 5th to allow non residents access to the beach. Also, restaurants may start serving food outside using proper social distancing. Finally, on May 8th, the IOP city council rescinded the “Keep it Moving Policy” for the beach and based on several meetings of our short term rental task force, will be allowing short term rentals as of May 13th using proper guidelines for cleaning. This has been a constant fluid process because of this unprecedented pandemic with over 24 updates. Please go to http://www.iop.net and click at the top of the page at latest news. Please know, we are having yet another information giving Zoom meeting about Dominion Energy’s tree removals on Monday, May 11th starting at 1pm. Please visit our site mentioned above to read about Dominion Energy’s tree removal plan or go back on this site to see the list of trees planned to be taken down. From my perspective, yes, the trees are planted on SCDOT right of ways, but have been there for decades. The right of ways are there for utilities, but damn it, why can’t they bury these lines. They have an underground main power line from Porchers Bluff under 5 miles of marsh and the waterway to the IOP, so doing so on high ground should be easy, albeit, expensive. Find a way to work with the residents to offset the cost. Please send council your comments and or, call Dominion and have them come to your house. You can find the contact info on this site on an earlier posting or on the city’s site. Thank you for allowing me to serve you.

IOP Covid-19 Update #23 and Charleston County Letter to the IOP

May 6, 2020

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As we slowly work our way through this unprecedented event, we find ourselves with a fluid target. The city is constantly meeting, all meetings results can be found at http://www.iop.net and click on latest news at the top of the page and if you would like to watch all the meetings council has held, go to YouTube and like the City of Isle of Palms. Sadly, we find some who spread negativity, while others appreciate the time that city staff and council have put into this to keep us protected. Remember, we are all in this together. Thank you for electing a good city council and for allowing me to serve as your mayor. Remember, social distancing, wash your hands frequently and please, stay safe.

Dominion Cutting Trees

May 5, 2020

Thank you Dominion, you could not have picked a worse time to trim, cut, or butcher trees. Here we are under a pandemic event with Covid-19 and all the problems we are faced with. Why can’t you think long term and put your power lines under ground. Surely, if you can come under the marsh from Porcher’s Bluff in Mt Pleasant to the Isle of Palms under the marsh of Gray Bay and including under the Intracoastal Waterway, you can certainly underground our power lines on high ground. I’d be pissed too, if you were cutting trees in my yard.

IOP Special City Council Meeting on Beach Access, Monday, May 4, 5 PM

May 4, 2020

Go to YouTube to watch, like the city of Isle of Palms. Also, follow the latest updates at http://www.iop.net under latest news at the top.