The Town of Pelzer has filed required documents to exercise the authority of eminent domain and re-acquire the property that was at one time the municipal pool site.
Pelzer Mayor Will Ragland said the town has submitted $50,000, the amount the property appraised for, to the Anderson County Clerk of Court, along with the court summons and paperwork to move forward on reclaiming the property.
Ragland said plans are to make it available for public use. According to Ragland, it will be used for public benefit and could possibly be used for athletic or recreational activities, parking, a farmers market or a number of other things that benefit residents.
He said the current owners have the option of accepting the $50,000 the town has offered or they can choose to fight it in court.
The property was sold by the town in 2015 for $11,000 and a truck and the pool was filled in by the new owners soon afterward. It was resold again in 2020.
After a number of citizens residing near the property complained about plans for a tire business to locate there, Town officials began considering options and decided to re-acquire the property “for public purposes”.
Council voted in September 2021 to use eminent domain authority.
A court summons was filed with the Anderson County Clerk of Court in December, 2021 and condemnation notices were sent to property owners.
At the December Town Council meeting, Town Attorney Richard Thompson said that the property had IRS and SC Tax liens on it. The South Carolina Department of Revenue and Department of the Treasury/Internal Revenue Services are both are listed in the summons, along with Southern Cornerstone Properties and eleven other people who may have an interest in the property.
If the entities listed in the summons fail to answer the Complaint within a certain amount of time, judgment by default will be rendered against the property owners, the property will be condemned and the town will acquire it under the South Carolina Eminent Domain Procedure Act.
The summons states the Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Services may claim an interest in the property due to two Federal Tax Liens along with other tax liens.
The parcel includes 1.782 acres and is located at 321 Highway 20 North, Pelzer.