Fort Mill Times

$55,000 business tax error fix in works

Sales tax money mistakenly sent to York County rather than Lancaster County may soon be returned.

The South Carolina Department of Revenue calculated the total amount of taxes misdirected as $55,000, according to York County Treasurer Beth Latham. Last week was the first time since the error was detected in August that a dollar figure was released.

Latham said she is waiting for an official letter from the department of revenue confirming the total.

When that letter is received, York County Council Chairman Buddy Motz said the council will make an official motion to send the funds to Lancaster County.

York County District 1 Councilman Paul Lindemann (R-Fort Mill) said he expects it to be a unanimous vote in favor of giving the money to Lancaster County.

"We've already discussed it as a council and all are in favor of sending it back," Lindemann said.

Thirty-one businesses in the Indian Land area paid their taxes to York County instead of Lancaster County. The department of revenue said the businesses were at fault for filing their taxes with the wrong county.

However, a department of revenue publication that listed 29707 - the ZIP code covering Indian Land - as a York County ZIP code could have contributed to the error.

That error has since been corrected.

The 31 Indian Land companies, whose names were supplied by the department of revenue, range from large businesses, including Cemex Construction Materials on Shelley Mullis Road, to small businesses, such as home-based carpet cleaning company Green Clean Steamer.

Taxes paid to York County in error were applied to the Pennies for Progress program rather than being used to roll back Lancaster County residents' property taxes via the Local Option Sales Tax.

Pennies for Progress can only collect $173 million over a seven-year period. If it is collected before the seven years is up, the county cannot collect any more money for the program.

Latham is still working with the department of revenue to ensure the $55,000 will be deducted from York County's Pennies for Progress total.