Myrtle Beach City Council to vote soon on renewal of Tourism Development Fee

(Photo from the City of Myrtle Beach)

The Myrtle Beach City Council will soon decide whether the city's Tourism Development Fee should be renewed.

The fee was implemented in late 2009 and is primarily designed to provide out-of-market advertising dollars to promote Myrtle Beach, and the Grand Strand as a whole.

Earlier this week, voters in North Myrtle Beach rejected a similar fee with one resident, Phillis Newman, telling ABC 15, "I wouldn't want to give to a nonprofit for to attract more tourists. There's other things that possibly I would be for."

Mary Jones, a North Myrtle Beach resident, also told us regarding North Myrtle Beach's try at the TDF, "South Carolina has already done a great job on tourism. So, and we already have so many tourists who liked it as a tourism place they're now moving here. So we're really just about overpopulated for the area that we have."

A date has not yet been set for when the Myrtle Beach City Council will vote on the renewal, but City Spokesman Mark Kruea said it will be happening soon.

The city published an article titled "Reasons to renew Myrtle Beach’s Tourism Development Fee" on its blog.

That blog says Myrtle Beach's fee is different that the one recently rejected in North Myrtle Beach.

"North Myrtle Beach’s proposed property tax credit was the bare minimum allowed by state law. As shown on the attached tax bill, owner-occupied homes in Myrtle Beach receive three-and-a-half times the property tax credit that North Myrtle Beach was willing to consider. In the Myrtle Beach example, an owner-occupied home valued at $199,000 received a city property tax credit of $505.46, leaving a total city tax bill of just $111.44. That’s a savings of 82 percent," the posting says.

The blog also says the fee has three goals:

First and foremost, to provide out-of-market advertising dollars that allow Myrtle Beach (and the Grand Strand) to compete with other coastal destinations, increase visitorship and boost the local economy;
Second, to provide a property tax credit for owner-occupied homes; and
Third, to provide funds for tourism-related capital improvement projects that will, in turn, draw more visitors and benefit the local economy.

It also says visitors pay most of the fee and "The public has been very pleased with the property tax credit. If the City of Myrtle Beach does not renew the TDF, owner-occupied homes can expect to pay more than five times their current city property taxes."

Opponents of the fee question exactly how it is spent by The Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce and why it is needed.

The chamber has expenditure reports for the fee on its website at

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