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Lowcountry municipalities and festivals are decrying a change that would shift some $40 million per year collected from the South Carolina tourists towards marketing groups.
The general gist from those against the ideas is that it is a mistake to pump more money into marketing the state, but at
the same time slash funds or wipe out events that draw people in.
The plan is still being considered for endorsement by
the Tax Realignment Commission which would either recommend or not the
change to the Legislature. But last week there was a public hearing where many groups and governments said the change would be a bad idea.
If you'd like to read the comments of those speaking, like the Spoleto Festival, there's a wealth of materials on the Commission's website (scroll down to "Documents from October 7, 2010 Meeting.")
To give you an idea of how many dollars flow through the area, the City of Beaufort recently awarded $165,817 in accommodations tax grants and the county awarded $200,000 in hospitality tax dollars.