HHI Town Council looking into property issues for native islande - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

HHI Town Council looking into property issues for native islanders

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

Several items of interest are on the agenda for Tuesday afternoon's Hilton Head Town Council meeting, including the future of beach parks on the island and property owned by native islanders. 

Some properties date back to the early 1930s before there was even a bridge connecting Hilton Head to the mainland. Now, those property owners are concerned that the island's development will either cause them to lose their property or their financial investments in the land. The topic was brought up during a discussion pertaining to heirs of these properties primarily on the north end of the island, where the original owner has passed away and there is no clear deed or title to the land. In some cases, there have been multiple claims to a property, so the town is working on cleaning up those issues so people can develop that land. The conversation grew into a larger discussion that includes the impact zoning has had on those native property owners on the island. 

“The requirements, which tie back to state code, is when you create new lots, you have the infrastructure to serve those lots so that a buyer knows when they buy a lot they can actually build on it. The roads are there, the sewer is there, but obviously, that comes with a cost, so they’re trying to find a way that they do not have to bear that cost if there are no immediate plans to build on that property," said Town Manager, Steve Riley, Town of Hilton Head Island. 

The town manager says in the past, they have rezoned some of those properties to mixed-use from its original residential designation, so council is looking into approving an ad hoc committee that will look at previous actions taken and why they didn't work, in hopes of creating new solutions to the issue. 

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