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IOP Ways and Means Agenda, Tuesday, August 20th, 5 PM

August 17, 2019

It feels good to finally have the city going in the right direction. We can actually see light at the end of the tunnel as for our needs and how we are going to be paying for these needs. Our 11 year old public safety building that cost 6.5 million to build in 2008 has so many major construction defects, that this has become a top priority in getting it repaired. We have to have a healthy safe environment for our public safety personnel. We are looking at about 6.2 million in repairs, of which, we received just over 1.2 million from litigation with the contractors. This should never have happened, and it will not happen again. We will have proper supervision of the repairs which will be starting after the first of the year. Of course, our other top priority, is our drainage Phase III design and construction. The permitting that we need to be secure can take upwards a year or more. We are not looking at just the immediate drainage needs, but looking decades out, knowing we will be having more and more flooding events due to sea level rise. Even though permitting alone could take upwards of a year or more, we are not sitting around doing nothing, we have increased our Eadies Drainage Contractors from once a year to three times a year. Also, SCDOT has been out working on areas that we feel are priority spots, they are sending several crews out every quarter. The city recently passed several recommendations from the Planning Commission to slow down growth and to start becoming more resilient. We increased minimum lot sizes from 17,500 sq ft to 35,000 sq ft as a way to slow down recent lot subdivisions we were experiencing. On top of that, we are reducing the maximum impervious lot coverage from 40% to 35%. Plus, any new driveways, sidewalks and swimming pool surrounds shall be pervious. I’m proud that our planning commission is helping us lead the way in becoming more resilient. Recently, Charleston County has been having round tables with representatives of SCDOT, OCRM, and county level managers in trying to streamline hot spots that flood. I saw several Sullivan’s Island properties on the list and one from the Isle of Palms. I reached out to the county to see how we could add more, and have attached the questionnaires. If you have a drainage problem, fill it out and send it is to the Charleston County Legislative Delegation Office. 3 island residents I gave this questionnaire to, are now on the list. It’s the squeaky wheel that gets the grease. I hope this helps you. It never hurts to ask, and the ones who have sent this questionnaire in, have been contacted. Thank you for allowing me to serve you as your mayor.

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Council Meeting Decorum during Citizens Comments

August 8, 2019

The citizens comment period of government meetings is an essential part of local government. The Isle of Palms Code of Ordinances has in it, Section, 1-3-10, #2-B. “Citizens wishing to speak before city council shall notify the City Clerk at least 30 minutes prior to the start of the meeting and shall be allowed to speak in the order of requests received”. (We will allow citizens to sign up as they enter council chambers instead of the 30 minute rule) The total time allotted for citizens comments shall be 30 minutes, and the allotted time for each citizen shall be 3 minutes. Disrespectful or personal remarks will not be allowed and the chair may stop that citizen at such time. Nor, are council members allowed to engage in dialogue with the citizen during this period, we are there to listen and to remain neutral. I personally take full responsibility for allowing the July comment period to get out of hand, and we, the city, will follow our code of ordinances hereon. Please, if you come, and we reach the end our 30 minutes citizens comment period, and you were not able to speak, please bring your comments to be left with the city clerk to be dispersed to all council members afterwards. I’ve tried to be as transparent as possible, and to let everyone speak who wanted to, however, we have had several meetings which were overwhelmed with the same topic, over and over again. In future meetings, if someone has already said what you wanted to say, and you are signed up, please feel free to stand up when it’s your turn from the sign up sheet and say you concur. If there is a group, all with the same topic, please have one person speak for the group and everyone who supports such, may stand during their representative’s 3 minute comment period as a show of support. Starting this month, we will begin timing the comment period to be fair to everyone. Thank you for understanding this and I am honored to be the mayor of the Isle of Palms. Please don’t forget, if you want to be involved with city government, this is an election year, you have until August 19th to fill out your application and filing fee at city hall.

IOP Special Council 4pm, Public Hearing 5:45pm, Regular Council July 23, 6pm 2019

July 22, 2019

Thank you for allowing me to serve as your mayor. I will say it has been an interesting 18 months with unique challenges, but we never lost a beat. Currently, we are working on getting OCRM permits for both the 3 drainage outfalls for our Phase III project, the marina docks which the city is required to do by the terms of the lease, and we have started the preliminary work on our major renovations of our public safety building #1 down on J.C. Long Blvd. These are the big ones, we have many other moving parts that we are always working on. Please, this is election time, if you have ever considered giving back to your community, now is the time to start you council campaign. Again, thank you for allowing me to serve you.

IOP Ways and Means agenda, July 16, 2019, 5pm

July 12, 2019

After an extremely challenging year, one where new issues kept popping up, we were still able to pass a budget, without a tax increase. Yes, we have major drainage issues, which we are tackling in phases. We have 3 drainage outfalls that will cost 3.9 million, but council is deferring this amount until we get the OCRM permits to build which will easily fall into the next budget cycle. In the meantime, are still working on smaller drainage projects throughout the year. The same applies to our marina docks, because of the leases, the city has the responsibility to rebuild at an estimated cost of 2 million. But like our drainage outfalls, more OCRM permits are needed, which can easily take a year. Once received, those projects will be in the following year’s budgeting process. What we were able to do within this recently passed budget is to move forward with our repairs to our Public Safety building at front beach. While it cost us 6.5 million to build 10 years ago, it has major deficiencies that have to be corrected and these repairs are going to cost us almost as much as the building cost to build! Because of this building, the city hired Hill Construction to evaluate our city assets, and found we had 1.6 million in deferred maintenance. Because of this, we have now created a sinking fund to start maintaining city assets, so we are not caught with huge budget shortfalls due to not keeping up with our assets. Please do not blame this council for the issues they inherited, but thank them for being forward thinking for preventative maintenance. We have a new fire department ladder truck on order, it required too much work to rebuild whereas, the other ladder truck made the cut in being able to be refurbished, so instead of having to buy a new one, we are completely overhauling the truck for half the cost of a new one and still getting the same warranty as a new one. This is a council that is working as hard as they can, to give you, our taxpaying residents the best in services while trying to keep our/your costs down. In closing, remember, this is an election year, if you want to serve your community, run for IOP City Council. And please thank those that serve you with their time and expertise. And please, thank all of our city employees for the great job they do in providing the best in services to you.

Happy 243rd Birthday America!!!!!

July 3, 2019

Our Declaration of Independence was adapted on July 4, 1776, what a great country we live in!

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!

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.