Letter To The Editor: Misdirected Funds?

Dear Editor,

With the upcoming election we are all being asked to vote yes or no on spending IOP dollars to revitalize the marina and its facilities. For sure 100% of the funds for this project are/will be Isle of Palms funds. But, what percentage of the island population uses the marina? As we continue to bicker about the marina and fight over funding a project that will (in my opinion) benefit only the portion of Isle of Palms residents that use the marina, there is an infrastructure project that will benefit the environment and the long-term livability of all island residents and keep this island beautiful and safe for all people. I wonder how many residents on the Isle of Palms realize there is a large portion of the island where there is no sewer service? And even more incredibly, a large population of the septic systems homes are on the “fragile” waterways surrounding the island.

If we are going to spend money on infrastructure doesn’t it make sense to explore a worthwhile project? Sewer for the whole Island. Have we considered the environmental impact of sewer? I read a lot about the efforts council and island residents have made in cleaning up the environment by banning plastic bags, etc., protecting the sea turtle nests, management of water/drainage and interestingly enough about maintaining healthy waterways and shellfish beds adjacent to the barrier islands. Shouldn’t we do more? In speaking with a representative at the water department, I learned that there has been a plan in place since 1990 to provide sewer service to the entire island. I also learned that the council has voted down implementation of this plan on several occasions. The price in 1990 was five million dollars with the cost increasing to 50 million dollars today. How long are we going to put off one of the most important infrastructure needs of this island?

Mark Baty

Isle of Palms

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