Myrtle Beach and Horry County ordered to enter mediation regarding ongoing hospitality tax issue

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HORRY COUNTY, SC (WBTW) – A judge has ordered the City of Myrtle Beach and Horry County to engage in mediation within 20 days regarding the ongoing hospitality taxes issue, according to a court document filed Wednesday afternoon.

15th Circuit Court Judge William H. Seals, Jr. wrote that Florence attorney Karl A. Folkens has been appointed to serve as mediator, with the cost to be split between the City and County.

In the document, the judge also said the Court denied the County’s motion for a stay in the battle. This comes days after the County’s request. The Court concluded that Horry County failed to establish any basis for relief.

However, the Court also modified its injunction to require that Myrtle Beach, ‘which has adopted three ordinances dealing with the imposition of new local accommodations taxes and local hospitality taxes, to escrow the new tax revenues collected’ to provide security to the County.

Last week, Judge Seals clarified his June 21 decision, by stating that his previous order preventing Horry County from being able to collect hospitality tax money from Myrtle Beach, be applied to all county municipalities.

In March, the City of Myrtle Beach filed a lawsuit against Horry County, claiming the County has been illegally collecting “tens of millions of dollars per year” through the hospitality fee.

You can read more from the court filing here:

Mark Kruea with the City of Myrtle Beach says the City will continue to charge its Local Accommodations Tax, Hospitality Tax and Hospitality Fee.

Kruea also wrote, in a statement to media outlets Wednesday evening, that City officials look forward to a resolution in the case:

The city is prepared to participate in the ordered mediation in good faith and looks forward to an opportunity to discuss a possible resolution of its dispute with the county in a confidential setting…

Mark Kruea, City of Myrtle Beach Public Information Director

Count on News13 to continue to follow this ongoing tax issue and how it impacts residents.

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