Equitable Development

Strategy #1 - Equitable Development

Intent

This performance area seeks to provide opportunities for all residents – regardless of income, race or ethnicity – to live in healthy, viable and prosperous communities. The Equitable Development team will bring residents, businesses, organizations, planners, housing officials, government officials and developers together to form a community wide vision for the future of the neighborhood guided by locally defined needs and quality of life priorities.  Project development must be done in an equitable and just way that brings direct benefit to those currently living and working in the neighborhood.

Goal

Promote equity and opportunity for all residents.

Objectives

  1. Ensure diverse neighborhood and stakeholder involvement in all activities and decision making
  2. Maintain affordability in area
  3. Foster an inclusive community with a great diversity of housing and business opportunities for all
  4. Ensure neighborhood investments provide direct community benefit through job creation and investment opportunities
  5. Increase workforce development program opportunities

Projects

Energy Audits and Retrofits

A program geared to assisting low income homeowners in the Upper Peninsula to save on monthly utility bills by reducing energy consumption/waste and improve their comfort and quality of life.   The program involves energy audits to identify areas of energy waste, and also energy retrofits to fix the identified areas of need, both are free for income qualified homeowners.  The program is ongoing and is managed by the Sustainability Institute, homeowners are welcome to contact SI to see if their home qualifies.  More information is available on our blog.

Affordable Housing

Our team is working hard to find ways to protect the current affordable housing stock and incentivize new affordable housing units as possible.  In addition, many new developments in the area are part of the City’s Mixed Use- Workforce Housing zoning district, and will have 15% of their units dedicated to workforce housing.

Incorporating workforce housing units into new building construction is encouraged and incentivized in the new Upper Peninsula Zoning District thanks to efforts from this group of stakeholders.

Affordable Commercial Space

Protecting commercial affordability of the area is important in addition to residential affordability.  Our team of stakeholders, inspired by and including Enough Pie, are working on creating an Affordable Commercial Space program in Charleston.  Currently there is a pilot project in action that is being studied at the office space at 1600 Meeting Street thanks to Flyway.

Projects Others Manage and We Champion!

S.C. Homestead Tax-Exemption Program

A state law beginning in 1972 offering a $50,000 tax exemption for residents living in their homes for over a year that are: 65 or older, or totally disabled, or totally or legally blind.  To get the S.C. Homestead Tax-Exemption Program, you must file an application with the Charleston County Auditor’s Office.

Check to see if you have an exemption on file by searching for your home at Charleston County Property Search and clicking on the “parcel” tab.  If you would like more information about how to check your status or apply for this exemption, please contact us and we can guide you.

S.C. 15% Reassessment Cap

A state law is in place when homes go through reassessment that prevents the taxable value from increasing no more than 15% over the previous taxable value.  Find out more on assessment here.