The Van Wyck News

Volume 7 Number 11
A Voice for Freedom      26 August 2015
County Council Lunacy
McClancy Seasoning
     The situation is that McClancy Seasoning owns a tract of land immediately adjacent to a large, high end residential development that is about built out. The entire area, including the McClancy tract, is zoned residential, but the McClancy tract contains a manufacturing facility which has been in active use since before zoning came to the area. The  manufacturing facility is a nonconforming, preexisting use and can continue in that use as long as it is unchanged.
     McClancy now needs to expand that manufacturing facility, but cannot do so without rezoning the property to light industrial. Rezoning the McClancy property will have a substantial negative impact on the value of the residential properties in the immediately adjacent high end housing development and would therefore be an example of illegal "spot zoning."
     To add a little spice to the mix, the County is taxing the McClancy property as industrial even though it is zoned residential.
     The County's response to this situation? Go ahead and rezone the property to industrial, knowing that this is illegal and that the residential property owners will sue. Second reading of Ordinance 2015-1365 to accomplish this illegal rezoning passed 6-1 at the Council meeting on 24 August 2015 with Mr. Carnes dissenting. On passage of third reading of this illegal ordinance, McClancy Seasoning will immediately begin building its manufacturing facility under the industrial zoning apparently in place.
     By the time the property owners can get their case heard McClancy Seasoning will have its new warehouse finished. County Council will then restore the residential zoning, the claims of the residents will become moot, the lawsuit will be dropped and McClancy Seasoning will have its new warehouse as a new nonconforming use.  McClancy Seasoning will eventually move its entire operation to an area zoned industrial and sell the land to a residential developer at a very nice profit.
     Your Council at work. Sleazeball City or a brilliant legal solution to a difficult situation? Certainly a dangerous gamble with taxpayers money. If someone decides to sell a house and is negatively affected by the industrial zoning,  there is an open and shut case for damages against the County probably with heavy penalties because the County knowingly violated the law. On the other hand, if no one is negatively affected by the industrial zoning and the County can remember to rezone the property back to residential as soon as McClancy gets its facility built, it may work out.             `

UDO Rewrite
Community Meetings

     The UDO rewrite is moving along and community meetings will be held in September as follows:
8 September, 6 PM - AJ Recreation Center
10 September, 6 PM - Buford Recreation Center
17 September, 6 PM - Springdale Rec Center
22 September, 6 PM - Indian Land Rec Center
Maps, zoning classifications, land use standards, etc. will be available for public comment. Come to any or all of the community meetings, bring your ideas and comments. Remember that those who do not come and present their views at these meetings will live with the preferences of those who do.       
Indian Land Schools
      More than 100 people showed up for the ILAC meeting on 20 August for a discussion of the school situation in Indian Land featuring James Brooks, District 1 representative on the Lancaster County School Board and Brian Endres, author of a recent column in the Gateway concerning the formation of a new Indian Land School District.  A two hour, wide ranging, sometimes heated discussion was held on alternatives to the School Board's response to the growth in student population in Indian Land Schools, generally agreed to be grossly inadequate. 
     Alternatives discussed included forming a new Indian Land School District, building a new high school, building a new school campus and busing students from Indian Land to schools with excess capacity.
     Some relevant information: property taxes are about 35% of the total revenue to the School District. The area north of Rte 5 provides about 54% of the property tax paid in Lancaster County (County Assessor, August 2015). Indian Land schools register about 25% of the total students in the Lancaster County School District (2014 School Report Cards, SC Department of Education). Rte 5 is the present southern boundary of the School District's attendance area for Indian Land Schools.
     Given this information, it seems that creation of an Indian Land School District is likely to take 54% of the property tax money and only 25% of the students from the Lancaster County School District. Such an action would severely penalize students in the portion of the Lancaster County School District remaining after the division. Such an action is very unlikely to be approved by either the State or the voters.
Privacy Policy

Celebrate Van Wyck
Fall Festival

     Saturday, 12 September 10 AM - 4 PM at the Van Wyck Community Center, 5036 Old Hickory Road, Van Wyck (Lancaster), SC  29744. Food, crafters, activities for kids including the Gold Mine and train. Always a lot of fun.     
CDC Activities   
1 Sep 2015 - CDC Meeting 7:30 PM
12 Sep 2015 - Fall Festival - 10:00 AM-4:00PM
24 October 2015 - Halloween Party
28 Nov 2015 - Put up poles - Lighting the Way
12 Dec 2015 - Christmas Parade - Noon
13 Dec 2015 - Lighting the Way - 4:00 PM   

CTC Road Paving
     The County Transportation Committee gets money from the State each year to pave County roads. This has been running about $1MM per year for the last several years, but this year the Legislature provided extra funds from the surplus funds that came in above the FY 15 budget estimates.  Lancaster County's share is about $3.9MM. This plus some funds from the 1% sales tax passed by the voters last year will provide a substantial amount of road paving activity over the next year. The specific schedule as adopted by the CTC at its meeting on 25 August 2015 may be found here.
     In addition, SCDOT has announced plans to repave the entire twelve mile length of River Road between Rte 5 and Rte 9 during CY 2016.
     Rep. Ralph Norman and his Legislative Oversight Committee are working hard to come up with a plan to overhaul SCDOT so that taxpayers will have some assurance that road repair funds coming in to DOT will actually be spent on road repair. If this bill should overcome the Senate obstacle and become law, a rational increase in the gas tax may be a way to provide a rational road repair program in South Carolina.  

J.R. Wilt Editor