Wow, what a summer, what a year or for that matter, 2 years. Today, on Labor Day, I am sitting at my office to beat the deadline for my Message from the Mayor. As I drove here, I stopped by the grocery store, the tellers and manager were finally able to stop and talk, the summer rush is over and everyone can breathe a little clearer again. Don’t take me wrong, while tourism is good for the island, it keeps our local businesses in the black, and keeps your taxes way down. It’s always a sigh of relief when Labor Day gets here. Labor Day is known as the “unofficial end of summer.” A few decades ago, we used to have a “Seize the Island Back” party celebrating this time of the year. But, before I go any further, let’s all give a shout out and a big sign of recognition for the American workforce. Look around the world and we are the country everyone looks to for success, looks at our achievements and always for our help. Labor Day became a Federal Holiday in 1894. And since then, look at the advancements in every aspect of American life. We should all count our blessings for being Americans. This past Friday, Sept. 3, the candidate deadline for the Isle of Palms’ mayor race and council seats topped off at three for mayor and 10 for council. I applaud everyone who threw their name in the race, thank you! The scary part, only a few have actually lived here for any amount of time, and very few have actually attended a council meeting. Plus, there is a monied group who is spending big bucks so they can take back the island and fix a do nothing government. Interesting. Plus, they are supporting their own slate of candidates. I’m not sure who they are taking back the island from nor have I ever seen a council working under such incredible amounts of pressure in preserving the island with so many challenges as we have seen over the last four years. If I were a candidate, I would separate myself from any slate, especially one who hosted a fundraiser for the governor who threw us under the bus with S-40 and then amazingly can get a bridge restriped taking out our emergency lane in record time. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, without the emergency lane, it is just a matter of time before someone gets hurt or worse. I ask our residents to ask each candidate how long have they lived here, have they ever had to evacuate the island due to a hurricane and have they gone out, talked to the residents to see what the issues are, instead of having some big dollar, newly arrived “resident’s group” tell them to fight for the resident’s rights when that’s all this council has done. Mostly, I see a type of corporate bottom line talking, when in fact, the Isle of Palms has always been a small community that has a mixture of year round residents, second home residents, vacation rental homes, and, of course, our day visitors. I hope our candidates will go back to our minutes of the April 2015 council meeting and continue to fight for our parking plan. Yes, we had to give up some parking along Palm Boulevard, but we kept our parking plan in place. We need independent thinkers, not alliances who rely on special interest in the background, who have their own agendas. Maybe I am biased but I don’t see anything wrong with the way we have run our city since 1953, but there are some who move here because they fall in love with our paradise,
my lifelong home, and then decide to tell us how to do it better. Sorry, I had to get that off my chest. Enough politics, let’s talk about health and fun. On Sept. 17, we have our Community Wellness Fair at the recreation center. Please go to iop.net and look under the recreation department for all the details for each event that follows. First up in October is the IOP Connector Run for the Child on Oct. 2, which has generated over $100,000, to be donated to various nonprofits that benefit Lowcountry children. On Oct. 15 we have a very fun for the family Ghostly Tide Tales down on the beach at front beach starting at 6 p.m. On Oct. 30 we have our very fun to watch Halloween Golf Cart Parade and Carnival. Again, please go to our website to sign up and to make sure your golf cart is registered. Then, in December is our annual Holiday Street Festival from 2-7 p.m. at Front Beach, arts, crafts, children’s activities, music and of course Santa Claus followed by the lighting of our trees.
Lastly, please everyone, whether you believe in the virus or not, please get vaccinated. Not only is Covid-19 still lingering out there, but the highly contagious variant, the Delta Variant is coming on strong. What is a little shot compared to risking getting sick. Not to mention, our regular flu season is getting started, if not for yourself, please get a shot for your family, friends and neighbors. Thank you all for letting me serve you and I look forward to cooler weather and cooler water temperatures to keep the storms away.
Jimmy Carroll, Mayor