Surfside Beach leaders considering stormwater utility fee

Increased SSB stormwater fees

SURFSIDE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Homeowners in Surfside Beach may soon have to pay a new fee to help with drainage and flooding issues.

Town leaders discussed implementing a storm water utility fee during their budget workshop last week.

Many who live in Surfside Beach say all it takes is some heavy rain to cause flooding.

“When the heavy rains come and the hurricanes come, it can be quite a problem depending on what neighborhood you live in. There have been many days I couldn’t even get out of the neighborhood to go to work,” said Ruth, a Surfside resident.

Some in the community say the flooded streets are concerning.

“I think every resident in town is concerned about stormwater. Particularly when we have a heavy rain. We get many calls, the town hall gets a lot of calls," Surfside Beach Mayor Bob Childs said.

But solutions to the problem is something the town says it simply can’t afford.

“We have about four or five big projects that are going to need to be done in the future and we just do not have the money to do it,” said Childs.

The town is now looking to property owners to keep its head above the water. Town leaders are considering a stormwater utility fee to help pay for what Childs says is hundreds of thousands of dollars in projects.

The proposed fee would be $6.83 per month for residential properties which equals about $82 per year. Town officials estimate those fees would bring in about $465,000 dollars a year.

“They’re not small projects but we have to plan for the future and for the people that will be here in the future," said Childs.

If approved, the town will tack the fee on to property tax bills sent out by Horry County government in October.

Copyright 2019 WMBF. All rights reserved.