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CCC to consider Htax for McCaa Tavern

Posted: July 5, 2013 5:15 p.m.
Updated: July 8, 2013 5:00 a.m.

Camden City Council will vote Tuesday on whether or not to appropriate $60,000 in hospitality taxes toward the restoration of the McCaa House at Historic Camden Revolutionary War Park. Historic Camden originally requested $100,000; council is considering the $60,000 as an initial appropriation with the remaining $40,000 to possibly be granted at a later date.

According to a resolution attached to Tuesday’s proposed regular meeting agenda, Kershaw County Council has already agreed to appropriate funds to the project. In addition, the resolution states that “Historic Camden provided the city with research and information that the construction of the facility will have a clear impact in promoting tourism and brining tourists into the city.”

That research and information was transmitted in both a letter with attachments from Historic Camden and an oral presentation by Historic Camden board member Tray Dunaway in March. In his presentation, Dunaway said the multi-phase project would start with restoration of the historic building. The second phase would include furnishing and equipping the building so it can be “adaptively re-used,” or interpreted, as an 18th century tavern. A third phase would allow the building to be used as a rental venue.

Council debated the request several times, with Councilman Walter Long expressing concern at possibly using city funds to assist what would be a business serving liquor and that would potentially compete with local restaurants. Dunaway said the McCaa Tavern, as it would be called, would not function as a modern bar and would use a caterer’s kitchen, not a commercial one.

It was at Long’s suggestion that council is considering hospitality tax use for the McCaa project rather than it having been a line item in the new fiscal year’s budget.

Tuesday’s agenda is a short one. In addition to the McCaa resolution, council will consider first reading of an ordinance rezoning two properties on Salmond Street from R-6 to B-2. Both properties, owned by Beard Enterprises, are adjacent to an existing B-2 shopping center. The Camden Planning Commission, which held a public hearing on the matter, unanimously recommended the change.

Also, council will consider a façade grant application for $2,275.57, including a city match of $1,137.79 for Camden Family Care on Fair Street.

Council will hold a work session ahead of Tuesday evening’s meeting. On the work session agenda are:

• Information about the S.C. Federation of Museum’s (SCFM) 2014 conference, to be held in Camden March 12-14, 2014. Camden Archives and Museum Director Katherine Richardson is chairing the SCFM’s local arrangements committee of the organization’s professional development committee. The development committee will meet in Camden Aug. 26 to discuss the conference.

• A presentation honoring Camden Fire Department explorers who earned first-place awards at a recent conference in Myrtle Beach.

• An update on the city of Camden School Resource Officers agreement with Kershaw County.

• Information about Reality Check Midlands, a program recently attended by Mayor Tony Scully. The Urban Land Institute, which hosted the program, projects that 450,000 new residents will move into the Midlands by 2040.

• An update from Arnett Muldrow, the city’s tourism/marketing consulting firm, providing a list of possible members for stakeholder and a technical committees.

The work session begins at 4 p.m.; the regular meeting at 6:30 p.m. Both meetings will be held on the second floor of Camden City Hall, 1000 Lyttleton St., and are open to the public.



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