Dozens of James Is. residents attend open house for City of Charleston

JAMES ISLAND, SC (WCSC) - About 100 people came out Wednesday night for the City of Charleston's open house to welcome James Island residents to annexation.

As long as their property touches a current part of the city, residents of James Island can become a part of the City of Charleston. Right now, Charleston provides police and fire protection to city residents on the island.

Last month, for the third time, the State Supreme Court struck down an effort by some on James Island to form its own town.

The open house was held at the Lowcountry Senior Center on James Island.

"If people look closely at the options, they will realize they should not annex," James Island Mayor Bill Woolsey said in a brief statement Wednesday.

Woolsey promises he is working to make better use of taxes and improve services for residents who incorporate into the Town of James Island in the future. He says until James Island is officially incorporated, he is working with Charleston County for services like law enforcement.

"We're going to lose some but continue to fight for our rights," said Rev. Parris Williams. "We have a right to have another town, this town, the town of James Island."

People who want to annex into city limits must have property that is adjacent to an existing part of Charleston and need to fill out one of an application, which was available at Wednesday's meeting.

"They asked us about 10 years ago, my wife and I turned it down," said resident Robert McKelvey. "Now it's back again. Like I said only way I'll join is if I have to."

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