Accommodation tax feud now in the hands of the court

Grand Strand

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WBTW) – Ongoing litigation between Horry County and its municipalities over accommodation taxes is now a court decision.

On June 21 a judge ruled in favor of the City of Myrtle Beach by exempting the city from having accommodation and hospitality taxes collected by Horry County.

The following week, Horry County e-mailed their intentions to collect accommodation taxes from North Myrtle Beach.

North Myrtle Beach said the county’s actions are “in clear violation of the law” and explained all Horry County municipalities are exempt from the collection of hospitality taxes.

A statement by North Myrtle read in part:

In overwhelming fashion, the recent Court order associated with CIVIL ACTION NO. 2019-CP-26-01732 opposed Horry County’s actions in this regard. The same Court order identified the plaintiff as “City of Myrtle Beach, For Itself and a Class of Similarly Situated Plaintiffs”, which clearly includes municipalities in Horry County.

As emphasized in that Court order, South Carolina law preserves the autonomy of municipalities within their borders, absent their agreement or consent or an express statutory provision to the contrary. The County and the City each possess the authority to enact uniform service charges but no law grants the City or the County the power to unilaterally impose uniform service charges within the jurisdictional limits of the other.

The City of North Myrtle Beach is seeking immediate legal recourse.

The City of Myrtle Beach spearheaded legal action against the county by filing a motion in court, seeking to add all municipalities to their civil lawsuit.

News 13 reached out to Horry County, Myrtle Beach, and North Myrtle Beach officials for statements, which were all denied.

Spokesperson for the city of North Myrtle Beach Pat Dowling said the city is waiting for how this will “play out” it court.

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