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You Paid For It: $360K of accommodations taxes funding PGA shuttle system

Updated: Feb. 23, 2021 at 5:02 PM EST
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KIAWAH ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - Some attendees traveling to the 2021 PGA Championship on Kiawah Island could use a shuttle bus system paid for at least in part by people who previously vacationed on the island.

The Town of Kiawah Island’s most recent check report included a $360,000 payment on Jan. 6 to PGA Tournament Corp., and according to the municipal government this expenditure is for the transportation system for ticket holders that will run between May 17 and May 23.

Town administrator Stephanie Monroe Tillerson said the municipality’s State Accommodation Tax Committee previously approved allocations of $120,000 per year over a three-year period to help with the cost of the service.

The three allocations were combined into the $360,000 payment in January, according to Kiawah Island communications manager Stephanie Braswell Edgerton.

Tillerson noted that the state accommodation tax “is paid by tourists for rental charges on accommodations when staying on the Island” and that “revenues must be spent on tourism-related expenditures.”

The shuttles that are receiving this tax funding will run between the Freshfields Village lot and The Ocean Course, according to Tillerson.

PGA of America announced on Tuesday that around 10,000 spectators per day will be allowed to watch the championship in person. The organization has not yet responded to a request for comment about what percentage of the shuttle bus system’s cost is being paid for through accommodations tax revenue or other public funding.

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