City of Beaufort | June 2020
Your monthly news & updates
Welcome to the City of Beaufort's monthly newsletter. Any feedback? Please send to Kathleen Williams,
1st Sgt. Trish Brubaker of the Beaufort Police Department gives a high-five to one of the children at Sunday's demonstration.
A letter from Mayor Keyserling
From Mayor Billy Keyserling's Monday newsletter:

After watching the devastating news about cities across the country in disarray and turning violent over the murder of George Floyd among other reports of police brutality toward African American men, when I heard about a demonstration brewing in Beaufort I did not really know what to expect. But I did know that as Mayor it would be best for me to be front and center and not hiding at home.

Sunday morning I masked up, hopped on my Vespa, equipped with extra face masks for those who did not have them, and headed to the intersection of Boundary Street and Ribaut Road where a group of people were assembling.

I arrived a little earlier than most, some of whom were there all day and others for an hour or two at a time, to meet with the original organizers who were polite and positive assuring me their mission was only to "build up and not tear down their hometown."

Over the course of the day, they provided water so people would not become dehydrated and snacks for those who did not have anything to eat. It was a well organized orderly gathering of people hoping for change.

At this point the group plans to continue at that location and I urge all to respect and support them. They are doing their best to be part of the Beaufort team wanting us to move forward rather than backwards divided.

If nothing else give them the benefit of a "Honk" when you pass them

Be safe and stay well.
Reopening begins in City of Beaufort
We’re not back to the old normal yet, but everyone is adjusting to the new normal.

Covid-19 has not gone away, and it will be a while before there is a vaccine, but people, businesses, and governments are adjusting accordingly.

Local merchants
As we all know, merchants who cater to tourists and visitors have been particularly hard hit by the shutdown. And for the near future, they will not be able to count on the same number of customers as in years past, as fewer tourists visit and social distancing is observed. Recognizing these hardships, the City of Beaufort has adopted measures to help merchants. These include:

  • Restaurants whose property is contiguous to City-owned property, such as Waterfront Park, can lease an outdoor parcel up to 650 square feet for $10 a month for 90 days beginning June 1 (and were allowed to set up earlier). This will allow restaurants to expand outdoor dining. (See photo above of extra space at Plums.)
  • All-day free parking will be allowed in the Marina parking lot on Fridays and Saturdays beginning June 1 through Aug. 31. Metered paid parking on streets and in other city lots will be enforced. Curbside pickup zones outside restaurants will still be allowed.
  • New guidelines have been issued allowing more leeway on signage, banners, and sidewalk sales.

The Safe Commitment
The City of Beaufort is excited to be one of the partners in the Beaufort Area Hospitality Association’ s Safe Commitment. Other partners include the Beaufort Regional Chamber, Beaufort Memorial Hospital, the Beaufort-Port Royal CVB, Technical College of the Lowcountry, Town of Port Royal, and Beaufort County.

By making the  Safe Commitment , a business pledges to develop, implement and maintain a plan unique to its enterprise to properly clean and disinfect public spaces and follow recommended CDC guidelines to mitigate spread of COVID-19.

Businesses that sign up online will receive a Safe Commitment decal for their storefront and a Safe Commitment packet loaded with resources to help fulfill the pledge.

Find out more at . (We’re happy to report that every downtown business we visited recently had masks on hand and asked customers to spritz with sanitizer as they entered the retailer!)

Mask up, Beaufort!
Mayor Keyserling took the lead in helping local businesses provide masks for customers who entered without one. He personally bought 1,000 masks, and has helped raise more than $10,000 for several thousand more masks. More than 2,500 masks have been delivered to various establishments.

If you are interested in contributing, please do do through Beaufort Pride of Place online or by sending a check through the mail: Make payable to City of Beaufort, Pride of Place, 1911 Boundary Street, Beaufort, SC 29902.

Latest from DHEC
As of Monday, June 1, DHEC reported that the State of South Carolina had 12,148 positive cases of Covid-19 and 500 deaths. In Beaufort County, there have been 389 positive cases and 14 deaths. More than 206,000 tests have been performed in South Carolina. It's important to note that EVERY DAY NEW CASES ARE BEING REPORTED! Covid-19 is still spreading in the population, and it's is very important that we continue to take measures to mitigate it by washing hands, wearing masks, and maintaining social distancing. Read more here. Mobile testing units have been set up throughout the state. Read more here.
Morgan Ganoe, business licences, sits behind a plexiglass shield.
City to officially open
on June 15

The City of Beaufort will officially reopen to the public on June 15. Various safety and sanitation measures will be in place for our employees and the public.

Plexiglass shields have been installed in the departments that have face-to-face interactions with the public – planning, permits and business licenses. If a member of the public does not have a mask, a mask will be provided. Hand sanitizer will also be available for the public.

Social distancing will be observed within departments and with the public.

Guidelines will be issued shortly on meetings involving City committees, boards, and task forces, as well as City Council. During the last few months, City Council and board meetings have been held virtually via Zoom.
Public hearing on budget
set for June 9

The City of Beaufort will hold a public hearing and first reading of its FY 2021 Budget Ordinance on Tuesday, June 9, at City Council’s Regular Meeting, which begins at 7 p.m. The meeting will be held via Zoom, and streamed live on the City’s Facebook page. Public comment can be made via Facebook comments, or by emailing comments to City Clerk Ivette Burgess,

The City of Beaufort’s budget year begins on July 1, 2020, and ends on June 30, 2021.

The recommended budget of $23 million takes into consideration the financial hits from the Covid-19 pandemic, including a significant decline in the City’s Parks and Tourism Fund and State Accommodations Fund.

The belt-tightening at the City includes a freeze on vacant positions and a deferral on some infrastructure and repair projects. At the same time, expenses for tort insurance, health insurance, pension contributions and vendor contracts will increase.

To mitigate some of the revenue losses, the City is proposing a road fee per vehicle to cover some street and sidewalk repair expenses. Property tax revenues are expected to grow slightly with a millage adjustment.

Deferred taxes and renewals due June 20
Business license renewals 2020 for the City of Beaufort are due by June 20. Hospitality and accommodations taxes for February, March and April are also due by that date.

In March, to help local businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, City Council voted to waive penalties and interest on late filings for 2020 business license renewals, normally due on April 15. They also agreed to waive penalties and interest on late filings of hospitality and accommodations taxes.

Grant for Allison Road project
The South Carolina Department of Transportation has awarded a $600,000 grant to the City of Beaufort for its Allison Road Pedestrian Connector Project. This project includes building an 8-foot sidewalk on the south side of Allison Road; moving utilities underground; and repaving; and significant stormwater improvements.

Congratulations to all our high school graduates!
To our high school seniors, we wish you the best as you start on this new chapter. We know it's been a tough and often disappointing senior year. But the future will be written by you, and that gives us great hope!
Shred event June 6

The Beaufort County Public Works Department Solid Waste and Recycling Section will hold a document shredding event for county residents on Saturday, June 6. The event will be held from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. (or truck containers are full) at the Public Works South site located at 9 Benton Field Road, Bluffton.

To limit personal contact and protection against coronavirus, please STAY IN YOUR CAR during the event. Staff will unload bags and boxes and will use personal protection equipment (masks and gloves).
No watering on Mondays

Have you taken the No Watering Monday challenge? Our friends at Beafort-Jasper Water & Sewer Authority are asking that we do that to help protect fragile ecosystem.
It's officially Hurricane Season
June 1 marks the start of the Atlantic Hurricane Season, and forecasters at the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration expect a busy season. They've predicted a likely range of 13 to 19 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of which 6 to 10 could become hurricanes (winds of 74 mph or higher). Read more here.

This is the time to get ready. You can start by making sure your family has a plan, and that you have stocked an emergency kit.

Are you counted? Step up to the Census!
If you have not taken 10 minutes to complete the 2020 Census, please do! It's important that the United States, and South Carolina (not to mention the City of Beaufort) have an accurate count of all those who live here. Census data determines representation in the House of Representatives, and how billions of dollars in federal funds are apportioned.

From the Census: "Federal funds, grants and support to states, counties and communities are based on population totals and breakdowns by sex, age, race and other factors. Your community benefits the most when the census counts everyone. When you respond to the census, you help your community gets its fair share of the more than $675 billion per year in federal funds spent on schools, hospitals, roads, public works and other vital programs."

PostScripts on Beaufort's history
Beaufort's John Mark Verdier House, home to Historic Beaufort Foundation, continues to be closed. But its docents are providing rich histories of Beaufort in these short PostScript videos.

You can find these on Historic Beaufort's  Facebook page.
Welcome new businesses!
Every month we'll feature the new businesses that have opened in Beaufort, as described in the owners' own words.
Amidst The Alders
223 Scott St.
Current Hours: Tues-Sun 10 a.m.-4pm

Amidst The Alders is home of "the whimsical, the curious, the rare and the lovely." Part museum, part lifestyle shop and part apothecary, our store encompasses organic skin care, gourmet chocolates, caramels and teas, a dried flower bar, natural cleaning products, hand-crafted kitchen utensils, gemstone beads, greeting cards, fair trade woven bags, old sea charts, home decor, dug pottery and artifacts, locally found fossils, locally crafted furniture and circa 1910 jewelry. We only carry items from U.S.-based companies.

Tribe Nutrition LLC
129 Burton Hill Rd Ste. H
Mon-Fri: 6 a.m. - 6 p.m.
Sat-Sun: 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

Tribe Nutrition LLC is owned by Sacorra White, a Burton, S.C., native. Tribe Nutrition is about the health and wellness of the community. “When I realized that I had the opportunity to help share these amazing healthy meal replacement shakes and energy teas with my community I had to seize the moment,” she says. “We promote inner happiness and an overall healthy lifestyle. Our platform has allowed us to help many with weight management and making healthy choices."
Lost Local
705 Bay St.
Wed- Sat: 11 a.m.-midnight
Sun: 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

Lost Local is an escape from the regular and mundane. It is a place to explore new things, find new favorite dishes, and learn from the locals. Featuring a menu inspired from around the world of fresh, local ingredients, Lost Local is the perfect location for a people-watching lunch or a relaxed, eclectic dinner and cocktails. With over 30 years of experience cooking in the finest restaurants, chef Mike Chapman is excited to present our vision to you and all our guests. We source our fresh ingredients from local farmers and fishermen. Arrive lost, leave a local.
1216 Boundary St.
Tues-Sun 5 p.m. - until

Blacksheep is a restaurant where you can relax and be yourself, to eat the food the way it's plated, and to celebrate with those around you. If you're not sure about something, try it anyway--it's just food. It's a tidy 900 square feet of space with a wood-burning oven and a small dining room. It's classic cooking from a menu that's as small as the dining room. It changes a lot (every other week) and, at times, may be more adventurous than others. It's not pretentious but it's polished. It's not loud or boisterous but intentional and unapologetic. Visit us at
Congratulations to Bay Street Outfitters!
Congratulations to Bay Street Outfitters! The store was recently recognized by Orvis as the 2020 Orvis Fly Shop of the Year.

Here is what Orvis said:

"For more than 21 years, Bay Street Outfitters has set out to ensure sure that their shop features a staff with the experience and knowledge to assist each customer. As a fly shop and outfitter, Bay Street Outfitters has staff and guides on-site that have fished all over the world, spent countless hours testing knots and rigging techniques, and take time to study and use all of the equipment in the shop. As one customer summed it up:
'Great fly shop. Great people. Nothing else needs to be said. Stop in.'"

Meetings in June
City Council
5 p.m. June 9 Work Session
7 p.m. June 9 Regular Meeting

5 p.m. June 16 Work Session

5 p.m. June 23 Work Session
7 p.m. June 23 Regular Meeting

As of now, meetings will be held via Zoom and streamed on the City's Facebook page.

City boards, task forces
Historic Review Board, 2 p.m. June 10
Design Review Board, 2 p.m. June 11
Metropolitan Planning Commission, 5 p.m., June 15
Cultural District Advisory Board, 2 p.m., June 18
Parks & Tree Advisory Committee, 3 p.m. June 25

As of now, meetings will be held via Zoom and streamed on the City's Facebook page.