Anti-tax group tries to put the brakes on sales tax increase

The group Citizens Against the Tax Increase is campaigning against the ordinance that aims to raise money for transportation

RICHLAND COUNTY (WACH) -- For voters who don't see the need for transportation improvements in Richland County, officials want to help.

According to spokeswoman Stephany Snowden, Richland County Council approving on Tuesday the first reading of a plan to spend $25,000 in public money to advertise the proposed penny sales-tax increase.

It was insult to injury, said Richland County resident Michael Letts.

Letts is a member of Citizens Against the Tax Increase, a grassroots effort to get citizens to vote no on a proposal that would generate more than a billion dollars over 25 years for transportation.

We feel like the economic situation the way that it currently is, says Letts, citizens of Richland County simply cannot stand any additional taxation.

Letts is also against Richland County Council's publicly-funded educational campaign idea.

$25,000 can certainly be utilized for other things that are essential to the county, says Letts.

Officials say the money would be used for informational materials only, so that voters could learn how the penny sales tax-increase would be used.

Richland County Council will hold a public hearing in September to allow residents to voice their opinions. The proposal must survive two more votes with council before it's approved.

WACH FOX tried reaching all eleven council members, but none of them were available for comment Thursday.