County suing Clemson

COUNTY — After the city of Clemson refused Pickens County Council’s offer to resolve an ongoing dispute regarding tax increment financing (TIF) funds, county council has decided to pursue litigation against Clemson.
According to a release from clerk to county council Donna Owen, council was informed by its legal counsel Monday night at a meeting that the city of Clemson had rejected the offer.
“The county council believed their offer was generous and reasonable and, if accepted, would have resolved this issue without resort to the acrimonious environment of litigation,” the release said. “ While the county council wishes that this matter could have been resolved without litigation, the county council cannot acquiesce to the city’s continued expenditure of county and school district taxes on projects that are unrelated to the city’s stated redevelopment goal of removing conditions that threaten the economic health of the community.”
Owen’s release said that although council members regret the outcome, they believe litigation is the only course of action that protects taxpayers’ interests.
County council considered resolving the matter through mediation, but felt after further consideration that mediation would be “fruitless.”
“Moreover, mediation is a closed process, hidden from public scrutiny,” Owen’s release said. “County council believes that pursuing litigation will shine light on the city’s use of county and school district taxes collected within the Clemson tax increment financing district.”