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IOP Special City Council Budget Meeting 5:30, IOP City Council Meeting 6pm

June 25, 2019

Thank you for allowing me to serve as your mayor. Please note, this budget was very challenging. We had to deal with hiring both a police chief and a city administrator, while at the same time, working on drainage issues, the rebuilding of a public safety building which is only 10 years old and dealing with the marina docks that, because of the way the lease was written, the city is responsible for. Both the drainage cost and marina require OCRM and DHEC permits, which will push these projects out into the following year’s budget. However, while waiting for the permits, the city is working on designs so as not to lose time. Our city hall staff along with council have been very aggressive in seeking income from very limited sources, and have created a building maintenance fund for city assets. Please make sure to thank our city hall staff and council members who all worked hard in preventing a tax increase, that we thought was imminent but were able to hold off another year while maintaining our city services, and city assets. Lastly, this is an election year, if you have ever thought of giving back to your community, now is the time to start preparing your campaign. Happy 4th of July, and please be safe!

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IOP Special City Council on adopting a budget and lot coverage 5:30 pm, IOP City Council Agenda 6 pm Tuesday June 25, 2019

June 22, 2019

As always, I want to thank our city staff for the incredible job and many hours they put in on this budget. This has been a trying year, but we have accomplished more in this past year than in any year I’ve been on council. Plus, we had to take care of issues that we inherited, ie, a 10 year old public safety building that is basically being rebuilt, a marina lease that requires us to rebuild the docks and working on drainage. Two of the projects, the drainage outfalls and the docks, require permits from the OCRM that will take us into the next fiscal year, so we dodged a bullet by not having to raise taxes this year, but it will probably happen in our July 1, 2020 to June 30th, 2021 budget. Our city staff and council all deserve Kudos for a job well done. Thank you for allowing me to be your mayor.

IOP Ways and Means Agenda June 18, 2019

June 18, 2019

As many on council have been talking about for over a year, we have the 3.9 million we know we need to build in drainage outfalls, plus we inherited a Public Safety building that is only 10 years old and cost 6.5 million to build, but are faced with almost the same amount in repairs. This in inexcusable. Plus, because of leases the city entered into at the marina, we have to rebuild the docks when those cost should have been put on the tenant through a triple net lease. Before we start raising taxes, we need permits for the outfalls, and for the marina dock rebuild which will take us out another year. This council has cut, trimmed, increased areas of limited revenue, so I am hoping to be able to maintain another year without a tax increase. This has been a great council who has worked hard to be forward thinking, to save 1% a year in city asset maintenance and all the while, maintaining city services to highest of quality. Thank you for letting me serve as your mayor.

IOP Special Council Workshop June 13, 4pm

June 8, 2019

As we close in on our passing a budget, we keep finding more challenges, but before I go into this, let me say first, CONGRATULATIONS to our new City Administrator, Desiree Fragoso and to our new Police Chief, Kevin Cornett. We went through a lengthy process to seek applicants, more than a 100 applicants per position, and both Desiree and Kevin stood out as easy choices who will be taking our island community into the future. Now, back to the fun stuff, the budget. We knew we have drainage problems that are growing more frequent. We finished our Phase II project last year, and now we are working on Phase III which will be 3 drainage outfalls at 41st Ave, 36th Ave, and 31st Ave. These are just the outfalls and will cost 3.9 million, but we still have a lot more to do on the interior of the island. We also have $500,000 in our budget for smaller projects during the next fiscal year. On top of this, we increased our ditch maintenance contract with Eadies Construction from once a year to 3 times a year. We finally met with SCDOT who came out with several crews and worked on some hot spots around the island and have agreed to come back quarterly. Drainage is something we will be having to deal with for decades to come. We just introduced new ordinances that will make lot subdivisions harder and we are decreasing our lot non-pervious coverage from 40% to 35% and requiring pervious driveways, sidewalks, and pool surrounds. The IOP is taking the lead in becoming more resilient. Drainage was one of my campaign promises, however, we have discovered, after a lawsuit settlement on our Public Safety Building by front beach, that we have serious construction defects that were unknown. We have a building that cost us 6.5 million to build 10 years ago, and will now cost us almost the same amount to repair. The problems are similar to the ones we had in the previous building that we tore down and replaced. Just so everyone knows, this building was built before the current council was serving, this is just something we have to deal with. Lastly, because of poorly written leases, the city is responsible for the replacement of the docks for the marina tenant. Usually, one does a triple net lease where the tenant is responsible for the docks, taxes, and insurance, however, this wasn’t done. The city is seeking a dock rebuilding permit from the OCRM, which could take upwards of a year or longer for such a large project. The marina’s 5.5 million dollar bond referendum was what got me elected, we would have borrowed all this money to improve the marina, but because of 2 of the leases, which run till 2045, we would have got nothing in return. We do have 2 leases that expire at the end of the summer of 2020. The city has hired a professional commercial real estate company that will seek RFPs, (Request for Proposals) on the Morgan Creek Grill property. Any of the current tenants may also put in a proposal, but this time, we will think ahead about the city’s vision for the marina, its traffic flow and parking. These are just some of the big ticket items we are faced with. We are a small community that has the lowest tax rate around with limited income streams. Please look at your tax bill and see the portion that the Isle of Palms gets, and you’ll see that you are getting police, fire, sanitation and recreation for next to nothing. On my tax bill, I pay less than $100 a month for all of these services. Our taxes are low because of the tourism industry and 2nd home property owners. I’m extremely pleased with the results of our parallel parking along Palm Blvd and our protecting our residential neighborhoods from day visitor parking. It is still a work in progress, but if you want to compare our plan with the other 2 public beaches, please ride around both Folly and Sullivan’s Island on a weekend and then compare. It’s been a tough first 18 months, but I could not be more proud of what we have accomplished in spite of all of our challenges. Now that our major city positions have been filled, it’s time to take care of our city and our assets. Thank you for allowing me to serve as your mayor, and please remember, this is an election year, please consider running. It’s not easy, but it is rewarding giving back to our community.

IOP City Council Agenda 5-28-2019 6 pm

May 25, 2019

As always, thank you for allowing me to serve as your mayor. This meeting has several topics that we have been working on. Drainage is always there with 3 drainage outfalls being designed for 41st Ave, 36th Ave, and 31st Ave. We also installed some new pipes at Marginal Rd across from Wildwood. These will all help the New Forest Trail area. Not to mention, Eadie’s Construction was increased from once a year to 3 times a year, and SDCOT will be coming out quarterly. Friends, we need to be proactive and stop using concrete driveways, sidewalks and pool surrounds, we need to become more resilient, sea level is rising, we need to work together. One more topic is the Wild Dunes asking to give them special permits to have 35 city sanctioned permits to run cement trucks down Palm starting at 2am in the morning to prevent traffic jams in our busy summer time traffic, this is a tough one, but residents come first. Do we want back ups in the daytime or do we want to have cement trucks starting at 2am in the morning. Thank you and please come to council and speak up. You are our bosses! Jimmy Carroll

IOP Special Budgeting Workshop @4, followed by Ways and Means Committee Meeting May 21, 2019

May 21, 2019


As always, thank you for allowing me to serve as your mayor. I love what I am doing for our island, however, this past year has been a daunting task, it is not a job for the feeble, nor is it really a part time job. I spend half my days working my regular job and half my day for the city. Whoever follows me, I hope they put into it, their heart and willingness to give up a lot of time. When I ran, I stressed that we needed to be fiscally responsible, to be prepared for when a storm hits and not if, and that we need to take care of our needs as opposed to our wants. As one council member once suggested, that we are flush with money, well, we are not. The city is faced with several large dollar projects which our Ways and Means Committee is diligently working on. My top priority was drainage and remains such, however, we have several other projects sharing the top “must do” list. Right now, we have Thomas and Hutton working on 3 drainage outfalls for 41st Ave, 36th Ave, and 31st Ave. known as our Phase III project. The estimated costs of this phase is 3.9 million. The planning committee is looking at strategies to make our island more resilient. It is time for us to start using pervious sidewalks, driveways and pool surrounds. Last year, we increased expenses associated with maintaining our drainage ditches more frequently throughout the year. Also, SCDOT performed significant improvements earlier this year to assist in stormwater management within SCDOT right of way infrastructure and they are committed to return to the city every quarter to continue working on these priorities. The Public Safety Building on J. C. Long Blvd built in 2009 has serious construction deficiencies that need to be addressed now. We have had Trident Construction, who built Station 1 on 41st Ave. doing investigative work and testing to identify all the repairs needed. The actual work will likely not start until January 2020 and won’t be completed until the next fiscal year. We are trying to keep paying without borrowing. Another “must do” project are the marina docks which the city is contractually obligated to replace. The city is pursuing the permits now, which could take up to year to get for a project this large. This is yet another project that will cost millions. In the future, any leases the city considers will be triple net where the tenant is responsible for taxes, insurance, ordinary and extraordinary maintenance. It would be nice to have island wide sewer, but we can’t afford it at this time based on our needs mentioned above. This is the first summer where our new parking regulations where parallel parking is required on both sides of Palm Blvd from 22nd to 40th Ave. I recently visited other public beaches and saw first hand how great our plan is working as opposed to where we were several years ago. We still have tweaking to do, but beach parking is much better organized and we have successfully reduced the impact on our residential neighborhoods. This council, of which I am proud to serve with, understands this, and we are working as hard as we can to keep our costs down while taking care of city assets. Our goal is not to have a tax increase, but that day will be coming eventually.
I pay $5,500 for my home’s taxes, of which, less than $1,200 comes to the Isle of Palms. That means, I get police, fire, sanitation and recreation for less than $100 a month, a steal and far less than all of our neighboring communities. Hope to see y’all tonight.

IOP Special Council Meeting followed by regular Council Meeting April 23, 2019, starting 5:30

April 22, 2019

As always, thank you for allowing me to serve as your Mayor. Yes, it has been extremely challenging, however, this council has come through with flying colors. We are faced with drainage issues that will continue to get worse, we inherited a public safety building that has major construction defects, we had two key positions come open, yet, we are tackling everything. We have limited revenue streams for our projects, but have been prioritizing our challenges. We have to be thinking not for just the next year, but design for decades to come. We are looking positively into the future and know we are doing what is best for our residents. We appreciate the public’s attendance and comments at our council meetings over the past one and a half years, something we have not seen for years. Thank you. Jimmy