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      Richland County penny sales tax becoming a reality

      RICHLAND COUNTY, SC (WACH) - Ground breaking for the first project funded by the Richland county Transportation Penny Sales Tax program was held Wednesday morning.

      The event took place on Pilgrim Church Road, and for residents like Teronal Wilson who has been in the neighborhood for more than 30 years, she says it has been a long time coming.

      "Living on the dirt roads, it's a lot of dirt. A lot of dust. It's damaging to cars. You have to get tires more often," said Wilson.

      Richland County officials say the sales tax will last for 22 years, generating $1.1 billion in funds.Of that money, $45 million will go towards paving more than 250 miles of dirt roadways.

      "They live with this traffic. They live with the dirt coming on the houses," said Councilman Torrey Rush, who represents the district. "The means to have a road for transportation that is safe for one and efficient makes sense for the citizens, so that's why they're excited."

      Council member Norman Jackson says more dirt road to pavement projects will take place in the coming weeks, with several projects finishing in the next two to three months.