Horry County Council Chairman Johnny Gardner told MyrtleBeachSC news today, based on advice from legal council, Horry County will continue collecting 1.5% hospitality fees in all cities, with the exception of Myrtle Beach.
A court ruling by 15th circuit Judge William H. Seals, Jr. on Friday, June 21st, stated that the county could not collect hospitality fees within the city of Myrtle Beach or among any other plaintiffs. The hospitality fee sun-setted, and was re-newed by former Horry County Council Chairman Mark Lazarus and the “then” council in 2017 without approval from any local city governments.
Horry County’s legal team of Henrietta Golding and Arrigo Carotti told county council they believe there are no other stated city plaintiffs.
However, City of North Myrtle Beach Public Information Officer, Pat Dowling emphatically told us, “There is no doubt in our mind that what the county is doing is illegal. We sent out a letter on Friday to all city of North Myrtle Beach businesses telling them to discontinue collecting the 1.5% hospitality tax as of Monday, July 1, 2019.“
Dowling said that the cities of Surfside Beach, Conway, Aynor among other cities sent out a similar letter to all of their city business owners as well.
“Horry County is not authorized to collect this tax in our city,” said Dowling, “and businesses in our city will not be adding those fees on to customer purchases.”