Irmo Council approves three projects for "Pennies for Progress" - - Columbia, South Carolina |

Irmo Council approves three projects for "Pennies for Progress" list

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Irmo town council members discuss Pennies for Progress projects Irmo town council members discuss Pennies for Progress projects

After withdrawing all previous suggestions, the Irmo Town Council has approved three projects for the Pennies for Progress list.

At its meeting Tuesday night, the council voted on three local improvement projects to be funded by the proposed penny tax, if its approved by Lexington County voters.  Originally the council approved five projects, but withdrew them.

"The first five projects were not as worthy as the next three projects," said Mayor Hardy King after the meeting.

The projects include improvements to the Thames Valley Road intersection with St. Andrews Road, The Lake Murray Boulevard intersection with Woodrow Street and Saint Andrews Road, and a new public works building.

Lexington County municipalities have until Thursday to submit their lists of public projects that they want the proposed penny tax to pay for.  From those submissions, a consulting firm will compile a master list that will go before voters.

King says the more realistic projects there are on the list, the better chance the referendum will have of passing.

"I hope the consulting firm throws a bunch of that stuff out so the list that goes to voters is all worthy projects," he said. "As a citizen and I look at that list and there's a lot of stuff on there, I might look at that list and say, 'There's nothing I would vote for.'"

King hoped other towns and cities would put projects on their list that they could not pay for any other way.

"I was hoping they would only put things on the list that they couldn't find funding for," he told council.

In addition to submitting five projects for the list, municipalities had to prioritize them. Council thought the Thames Valley-St. Andrews Road intersection had highest priority, followed by the Lake Murray Boulevard project.

"If there's stuff on there like intersection improvement, bridge replacement, road widening, major safety infrastructure issues, I might vote for that," he said. "When the list comes out, everyone can look at it and decide, 'Will I vote for this or will I not vote for this?' based on that list, because it's a good list. It's gonna' be a hard sell in a conservative county to get it passed."

"Hopefully the consulting firm will come up with a good list and everyone can agree that these are good projects and we need to pay an extra penny to get things done."

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