Estate Planning Attorney inLadson, SC

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Securing Your Legacy in South
Carolina

Did you know that one in two U.S. citizens have yet to create a plan for their estate? Just about everyone knows they need to get their affairs in order, but most people procrastinate when it comes to estate planning. It's an uncomfortable subject to think about. After all, nobody wants to ponder their death and what happens to their assets when they pass. However, working with an estate planning lawyer in Ladson, SC, protects you, your loved ones, and your assets, both while you're alive and after you have died. There isn't a perfect time to plan your estate, but there is a right time and that time is now.

We understand that there is no "one-size-fits-all" solution to your estate planning needs. That's why, at CDH Law Firm, we make a concerted effort to speak with our clients personally so that we can create an estate plan that is as unique as they are. Our estate plans are comprehensive, cost-effective, and catered to you. That way, your family is provided if you are incapacitated or pass away.

At the end of the day, our goal is to make sure that every one of our clients leaves our office feeling less stressed and more informed. Peace of mind is valuable currency these days. Why worry about the future of your loved ones when you can use South Carolina law to ensure their stability?

Many of the clients in Ladson that walk through our doors have significant questions that require serious answers. They're filled with doubt, stress, and worry. They're worried about their children, their spouse, their relatives, or all the above. They ask questions like:

  • How much does estate planning cost?
  • What kind of results can I expect?
  • How long will this process take?

If these questions sound familiar, know that you are not alone. At CDH Law Firm, we have worked with hundreds of clients just like you. Sometimes, these clients are unsatisfied with their current estate planning attorney in Ladson. Other times, they have been served with confusing papers or documents that leave them feeling overwhelmed. In either case, clients come to our office knowing they need to manage what is often a sudden, foreign situation.

The good news? We sit down with all new clients for an hour at no extra cost. We do so to get a basic sense of their situation and help steer them in the right direction. That way, they can leave our office feeling a little wiser and a lot better about the future.

Estate Planning Law Ladson, SC
Service Areas

Our firm specializes in several areas of estate planning and family law, including:

  • Estate Planning
  • Last Will and Testament
  • Living Wills
  • Heath Care Power of Attorney
  • Living Wills
  • Irrevocable Trusts
  • Revocable Trusts
  • Retirement Trusts
  • Special Needs Trusts

The CHSA Law
Difference

At CHSA Law, LLC, estate planning is like second nature to us. Having worked hundreds upon hundreds of cases, we have the knowledge and experience to assist with all the estate planning needs that you or your family have.

As our client, you will always work directly with your attorney. We do not pass cases off to paralegals or junior associates. Because your concerns and questions don't end when our office closes, we encourage our clients to contact us at any time.

Because we limit the number of cases we accept, we have the time and resources to truly dedicate ourselves to each of our clients. Unlike some competitors, we care about the outcome of every case because we know that our clients' future depends on it.

 Estate Planning Attorney Ladson, SC The-Cobb-Dill-Hammett-Difference
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What Our Clients Say

What is Estate Planning in
Ladson, SC?

The word "estate" might make you think of a sprawling mansion in the French countryside. The truth is, you don't have to be rich to have an estate. In fact, most people already have an estate. An estate comprises the assets that a person owns like cars, bank accounts, real estate, businesses, and other possessions. Everyone's estate is different, but we all have one thing in common: none of us can take our estates with us when we die. When that does eventually happen, you will need legal instructions that state who gets what from your estate in plain terms.That, in a nutshell, is estate planning building a framework in advance that names the organizations or people that should receive your assets after you die. Planning your estate now helps make life much easier for your family down the line.

 Estate Planning Lawyer Ladson, SC
A good estate plan covers more than fiscal assets, however. A comprehensive
estate plan should include the following:
  • If you have children who are minors, instructions as to who will be their guardian when you die.
  • Long-term care insurance if you suffer from an extended injury or illness.
  • Instructions that dictate what happens to you and your financial affairs if you become incapacitated before death.
  • Instructions on the transfer of your business after retirement, incapacity, disability, or death.
  • Instructions on how to provide for loved ones who might need help managing money or who need protection from creditors.
  • Probate and tax avoidance that help minimize court fees, taxes, and legal fees.
  • Planning Medicaid payments.
  • Instructions that help complete or update beneficiary designations.
  • Assist family members who have special needs without disqualifying them from government benefits.

Contrary to popular belief, estate planning isn't just for adults who are approaching retirement age. Estate planning is for everyone. After all, we're all getting older, and none of us know exactly when it will be our time to go.

The Basics of Estate Planning
in Ladson, SC

Although estate planning can be complicated, a well-rounded plan makes a huge difference in what is left to your beneficiaries. Before you start planning your estate, it's important to know a few common topics that may arise as you detail your needs.

1.

Working with a Tax Advisor and Estate Planning
Attorney in Ladson, SC

Working with a veteran estate planning lawyer is a no-brainer, but you should consider working with a tax advisor too. Your attorney's role is to help guide you through the creation of your estate planning documents. Common documents include your will, health care directives, and power of attorney. Your tax advisor will help guide you through tax issues associated with your estate planning needs.

In this relationship, you make the decisions while your attorney and tax advisor help you understand and think through the options you're considering. As a team, they will help you state your wishes clearly while minimizing mistakes and adjusting your plans as they change. Because significant savings can result from thorough, informed planning, you should seriously consider working with a tax advisor in addition to your estate planning attorney.

 Law Firm Ladson, SC
2.

Maximizing
Your Estate

If there were one overriding theme of estate planning, it would be maximizing what you plan to leave behind. Thinking through how each of your assets will be distributed is crucial to your estate. Your decisions may change depending on the type of asset, its size, how old you are, and several other factors. With an attorney on your side, you will gain a thorough understanding of what actions you should take to care for your family while minimizing expenses like taxes and court fees.

Estate Planning Law Ladson, SC
3.

Inheritance, Estate,
and Gift Taxes

One of the biggest parts of maximizing what you're leaving behind is to minimize taxes. Federal taxes on estates and gifts are incredibly high. Both forms of taxes usually have exemption limits, which means you can give up to a specific amount without being taxed. Your lawyer can achieve that by using the gift tax exemption to move assets while you are still alive. This strategy maximizes how much your beneficiaries will receive.

Inheritance taxes are often based on the value of your estate and paid prior to asset distribution to your beneficiaries.

 Estate Planning Attorney Ladson, SC

Choosing the
Executor of Your Will

The executor of your estate plays a key role in your affairs. Their responsibilities include carrying out the terms of your will and seeing the estate settlement process through until the end. Obviously, such a role demands a qualified person. Choosing your executor isn't an easy decision. The person you select should be great at managing money, be savvy financially, and show an ability to be patient. That's because the executor is tasked with:

  • Collecting Your Assets
  • Paying Outstanding Bills
  • Submitting Tax Returns
  • Petitioning the Court for Documents
  • Distributing Assets to Your Beneficiaries
 Estate Planning Lawyer Ladson, SC

If the person that you choose as executor is inexperienced with the estate settlement process, it is recommended that they lean on an estate planning attorney in Ladson, SC for guidance. It should be noted that you may appoint more than a single executor to your estate. This is common when two individuals have complementary personalities or skill sets.

The Benefits of Estate Planning
in Ladson, SC

One of the biggest benefits of planning your estate is the peace of mind it brings to you and your family. With the help of our expert estate planning attorneys, you have the power to protect your assets, privacy, and children's welfare. You can also potentially save money on taxes or even avoid probate. By having your wishes legally documented before death or incapacity, you can minimize any impact on your beneficiaries and take control of your legacy. Without a comprehensive estate plan, you're leaving the future of your loved ones in the hands of the South Carolina court system.

With an estate plan in place, you can plan for incapacity by using a power of attorney or advanced medical directives. Doing so relieves your loved ones of the burden of asking the court for the authority to fulfill your wishes.

At CDH Law Firm, we are committed to helping you prepare for both the expected and unexpected through years of experience and a fierce dedication to our clients. From establishing trusts to designing business succession plans, we are here to fight for you.

At CDH we offer a "Will Package" that includes 4 necessary documents.

If a husband and wife each purchase reciprocating will packages we give a discount. Reciprocating just means the husband names the wife and the wife names the husband. Those four documents are:

  • Last will and testament
  • Healthcare power of attorney
  • Durable power of attorney
  • living will

Common Documents Included
in Your Estate Plan

As mentioned above, everyone's estate planning needs will be different. However, most plans include one or more of the following documents:

1.

Will

Your will is an essential piece of documentation and is often considered the cornerstone of a proper estate plan. Generally speaking, your will is a document that dictates the distribution of your assets after your death. Having an iron-clad will is one of the best ways to make sure that your wishes are communicated clearly. As is the case with most estate planning, it is highly recommended that you work with an estate planning attorney in Ladson, SC, to create and update your will.

The contents of a will typically include:

  • Designation of the executor, who is responsible for adhering to the provisions of your will.
  • Designation of beneficiaries the people who will be inheriting your assets
  • Instructions that dictate how and when your beneficiaries will receive assets.
  • Instructions that assign guardianship for any minor children.

Without a will in place, the State of South Carolina will decide how to distribute assets to your beneficiaries. Allowing the state to distribute your assets is often an unfavorable route to take, since the settlement process may not include what you had in mind for your survivors. Having a will drafted that reflects your wishes will prevent such a situation from happening.

 Law Firm Ladson, SC
2.

Living Will

Despite its name, a living will does not instruct your survivors on what assets go where. Also called an advanced directive, your living will allows you to state your end-of-life medical wishes if you have become unable to communicate. This important document provides guidance to family members and doctors and solidifies certain issues like whether you should be resuscitated after an accident.

For example, it's common to direct that palliative care (care to decrease pain and suffering) always be administered if needed. Conversely, you may state that certain measures are not allowed, like CPR.

Estate Planning Law Ladson, SC
3.

Trusts

Traditionally, a trust is used to minimize estate taxes and maximize other benefits as part of a well-rounded estate plan. This fiduciary agreement lets a trustee hold your assets on behalf of your beneficiaries. There are many ways to arrange a trust to specify when and how your assets are distributed.

With a trust in place, your beneficiaries can avoid going to probate. That means they may be able to gain access to your assets quicker than when they are transferred with a standard will. Assets placed in a trust can pass outside of probate, which will save you and your family time, money, and stress.

There are two distinct trust categories that you should be aware of: revocable and irrevocable.

 Estate Planning Attorney Ladson, SC

Revocable Trust:

Also called a living trust, a revocable trust helps assets circumvent probate. With this trust, you can control your assets while you are still alive. These trusts are flexible and may be dissolved at any point in time. This type of trust becomes irrevocable upon your death. Revocable trusts can help you avoid the pitfalls of probate but be aware that they are usually still taxable.

Irrevocable Trust:

This kind of trust transfers assets out of your estate so that they are not taxed and do not have to go through probate. However, once an irrevocable trust has been executed, it may not be altered. That means that once you establish this kind of trust, you lose control of its assets and cannot dissolve the trust. If your primary goal is to avoid taxes on your estate, setting up an irrevocable could be a wise choice.

When drafted with the help of an estate planning lawyer in Ladson, SC, your trust can also:

Protect Your Legacy:

When constructed properly, a trust can protect your estate from your heirs' creditors. This can be a huge relief for beneficiaries who might need to brush up on money management skills.

Privacy and Probate:

Probate records are made available for public consumption. With a trust, you may have the choice of having your assets pass outside of probate court so that they remain private. In the process, you may also save money that you would lose to taxes and court fees.

Control Wealth:

Because you can specify the exact terms of a trust, you have more control over who receives your assets and when they receive them. As an example, you can set up a revocable trust so that your assets are attainable while you're alive. When you pass, remaining assets are distributed, even in complex situations involving children from multiple marriages.

The Top Estate Planning Law Firm in the Lowcountry

If you know that you need to provide for your family and loved ones after your death, it's time to develop your estate plan. With CDH Law Firm by your side, planning your estate doesn't have to be difficult. However, it does need to be accurate and executed exactly to your wishes something that we have been helping clients achieve for years. Don't leave your legacy up to chance contact our office today and secure your future generations.

CONTACT US

Latest News in Ladson, SC

Berkeley Co. deputies investigating after shooting leaves 1 injured in Ladson

The Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office is investigating after a shooting in Ladson left one person injured.The shooting occurred on Miami Street, off College Park Road.Just after 1 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 10, Berkeley County Communications received a 911 call about a shooting that occurred with one person injured. Responding deputies located the victim in the parking lot of Food Lion after the victim attempted to have someone drive them to an emergency room.The victim was transported to an area hospital for treatment....

The Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office is investigating after a shooting in Ladson left one person injured.

The shooting occurred on Miami Street, off College Park Road.

Just after 1 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 10, Berkeley County Communications received a 911 call about a shooting that occurred with one person injured. Responding deputies located the victim in the parking lot of Food Lion after the victim attempted to have someone drive them to an emergency room.

The victim was transported to an area hospital for treatment.

The Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office continues to investigate this case.

Dar Shokri and Fred Robinson each hit a hole-in-one in January to start 2024 off with a bang at Goose Creek’s Crowfield Golf Club

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Goose Creek Mayor Greg Habib, left, was joined by John Matthews of the Goose Creek NAACP at city hall to officially proclaim Monday, Jan. 15, as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the city of Goose Creek. King was born Jan. 15, 1929, and the day has been celebrated as a federal holiday for 38 years. The proclamation praises King for “working alongside people of all ages, races and backgrounds” and encouraging Americans “to come together to strengthen communities and empower the impoverished.”

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By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: The Post and Courier, 148 Williman Street, Charleston, SC, 29403, US, https://www.postandcourier.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact.

What drives you crazy? The intersection of Lincolnville Road and Ladson Road

LADSON, S.C. (WCBD) – Are you frustrated with traffic backups in Ladson? One resident has what they feel would be a simple fix to help alleviate a major intersection.The traffic pattern and potholes at the intersection of Lincolnville and Ladson roads have been a source of frustration for many drivers in the Ladson area. The area sees backups during the morning and afternoon rush hours often.One News 2 viewer who drives through the intersection daily believes a turn lane could make all the difference.Karen Fonkert ...

LADSON, S.C. (WCBD) – Are you frustrated with traffic backups in Ladson? One resident has what they feel would be a simple fix to help alleviate a major intersection.

The traffic pattern and potholes at the intersection of Lincolnville and Ladson roads have been a source of frustration for many drivers in the Ladson area. The area sees backups during the morning and afternoon rush hours often.

One News 2 viewer who drives through the intersection daily believes a turn lane could make all the difference.

Karen Fonkert said that with so many neighborhoods on Lincolnville Road – and even more being built – backups in Ladson are only getting worse. Especially at the Lincolnville/Ladson Road intersection. She said what is normally an eight-minute commute with no traffic, is often much longer.

“Usually, it’s about a 20-minute wait, just at the light. It backs way up, about a half mile, normally. And so if there’s an accident anywhere along there, it’s even worse,” said Fonkert.

As it stands now, cars move left to leave space for those turning right. But instead of a right turn lane, cars have to traverse a mess of dirt and potholes where the road drops off.

In fact, Fonkert said she once saw a truck break its axle when its tire fell into a pothole. But she says some new pavement could solve the problem.

“What I really think would help, and a lot of people have said this too, if there were a right turn lane. That would allow traffic to keep going through, and it maybe wouldn’t back up so far back on Lincolnville Road,” she said.

The roadway is maintained by the state. News 2 asked officials with the South Carolina Department of Transportation if they would be willing to look into paving a legitimate turn lane – but unfortunately, they only came up with this response:

“There are not any upcoming projects planned for this intersection.” They encouraged any concerned residents to reach out to their customer service center.

If this intersection drives you crazy, you can let SCDOT know. And if there’s any other roadway issue, you’d like for us to look into, send an email to mfee@wcbd.com.

Leidos announces new manufacturing facility in North Charleston, South Carolina

Facility will insource production of key security products and bring new jobs to the region(RESTON, Va.) July 6, 2023 – Leidos (NYSE:LDOS), a FORTUNE® 500 science and technology leader, today announced plans to establish a new security systems manufacturing facility in North Charleston, South Carolina. This will be the company’s third security systems manufacturing location in the U.S., expanding its presence and support to customers. Le...

Facility will insource production of key security products and bring new jobs to the region

(RESTON, Va.) July 6, 2023 – Leidos (NYSE:LDOS), a FORTUNE® 500 science and technology leader, today announced plans to establish a new security systems manufacturing facility in North Charleston, South Carolina. This will be the company’s third security systems manufacturing location in the U.S., expanding its presence and support to customers. Leidos will invest $31.7 million in the new facility, creating up to 170 new jobs in the region over time.

“This facility brings more manufacturing back into the U.S. and expands Leidos’ global security capabilities for the aviation and critical infrastructure markets,” said Jim Moos, Leidos Civil Group president. “We’re thrilled to expand into the North Charleston area and look forward to making a positive impact in the community.”

The new facility will produce security systems for Leidos’ Security Enterprise Solutions (SES) operation. SES offers a comprehensive suite of fully automated and integrated products for aviation, shipping ports, border crossings and critical infrastructure customers. These systems provide threat detection by screening baggage, cargo and people at checkpoints around the world.

“Leidos’ $31.7 million investment in their new facility here in the Lowcountry will lead to significant job growth and economic development,” said Congresswoman Nancy Mace (R-SC-1). “We congratulate them on their expanding operation and thank them for putting their faith in South Carolina.”

Located in Ladson Industrial Park, the new 150,000-square-foot facility will enable Leidos to onshore more manufacturing increasing the company’s critical capacity to support its growing customer base. The new plant will optimize manufacturing efficiency, quality and safety through application of best-in-class manufacturing processes. The facility is currently under construction and is expected to be fully operational by the first half of 2024.

About Leidos

Leidos is a Fortune 500® technology, engineering, and science solutions and services leader working to solve the world’s toughest challenges in the defense, intelligence, civil, and health markets. The company’s 46,000 employees support vital missions for government and commercial customers. Headquartered in Reston, Virginia, Leidos reported annual revenues of approximately $14.4 billion for the fiscal year ended December 30, 2022. For more information, visit www.leidos.com.

Certain statements in this announcement constitute “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). These statements are based on management’s current beliefs and expectations and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. These statements are not guarantees of future results or occurrences. A number of factors could cause our actual results, performance, achievements, or industry results to be different from the results, performance, or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, the “Risk Factors” set forth in Leidos’ Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 30, 2022, and other such filings that Leidos makes with the SEC from time to time. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. Leidos does not undertake to update forward-looking statements to reflect the impact of circumstances or events that arise after the date the forward-looking statements were made.

Ladson defense manufacturer making weapons for Israel, U.S.

A major foreign defense manufacturer has been operating in Charleston County for more than six months, but it has disclosed very little about the nature of its work since the facility first opened for business.Elbit Systems America — a subsidiary of Israeli-owned Elbit Systems Inc., which has 10 sites in the U.S. mostly located on the East Coast — officially started operations in Ladson in May. As a whole, the company supplies up to 85% of land...

A major foreign defense manufacturer has been operating in Charleston County for more than six months, but it has disclosed very little about the nature of its work since the facility first opened for business.

Elbit Systems America — a subsidiary of Israeli-owned Elbit Systems Inc., which has 10 sites in the U.S. mostly located on the East Coast — officially started operations in Ladson in May. As a whole, the company supplies up to 85% of land-based military equipment to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Elbit has recently seen growing demand from the Israel Ministry of Defense (IMOD) for its “solutions,” according to a Dec. 18 press release. The company’s American subsidiary also offers products and services related to commercial aviation, homeland security monitoring and night vision technology.

The S.C. manufacturing facility stands at the end of Sightline Drive, a short road just off Ladson’s Palmetto Commerce Parkway. The building is buffered from the parkway by a line of trees, equipped with a traffic light. In other words, it doesn’t stand out as a defense manufacturing plant. And yet, Elbit’s Ground Combat Vehicle Assembly and Integration Center of Excellence is exactly what it sounds like — a plant that builds truck-mounted artillery systems and command post support vehicles.

Longtime Charlestonians might remember General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS) — known before a buyout as Force Protection, Inc. — as a defense plant also in the Ladson-area industrial zone. The company, once a major Charleston manufacturer, supplied millions of dollars of contracted equipment to the U.S. Department of Defense and foreign armed forces, profiting from high demand for Iraq and Afghanistan war-era battlefield vehicles. GDLS spokesperson Robin Porter told the Charleston City Paper the plant was sold to Pegasus Steel, LLC., a company first established in South Africa in 1994.

Elbit America planned to invest approximately $31 million into its project, including construction costs, according to its Charleston County contract, which the City Paper obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request. Elbit’s facility uses 135,000 square feet of a 175,500-square-foot building. The remainder of the space is currently available for rent. The $31 million also accounted for machinery and site design, consisting of “36-foot cast-in-place, tilt walls … [and] 14 overhead cranes used to add armor to military vehicles,” wrote Choate Construction, the group contracted to build the plant.

Charleston County first became involved in Elbit’s relocation project in 2019, when it entered negotiations with Elbit under the company’s requested code name, “Project Thunder.” Code names are a common statewide practice of assigning a made-up project name to keep relocation deals anonymous. Charleston County Council described Project Thunder as a “leading global source of innovative, technology-based systems for diverse defense, homeland security, and commercial applications.” Elbit America would use this name to “begin its tax incentives process.”

In September 2021, the S.C. Coordinating Council for Economic Development authorized Charleston County to use a $700,000 set-aside grant to assist Elbit in business operations. The county and the state’s Department of Commerce also created an “attractive package” for the project. Incentives included a fee in lieu of tax credits, known as a “FILOT,” and Special Source Revenue Credit (SSRC), two tax-lowering incentives regularly applied to major businesses.

The Elbit site qualified for FILOT, which is available to companies that invest at least $2.5 million. The FILOT can save 40% or more in property taxes. FILOT savings are even greater when, as applies to Elbit, a business is designated inside an industrial park.

The SSRC incentive is taken from FILOT revenue: Counties “award credits to taxpayers to be applied against their property taxes.” Essentially, companies get more tax credits from the tax credits they already have. Dollars saved provide a competitive advantage to relocated businesses, but at a price. A 2019 fiscal year report disclosed that companies’ extra revenue diverted $423 million from public schools across the state, disproportionately low-income schools with mostly Black and brown students.

Elbit publicly announced its 135,000-square-foot Ladson site in November 2021. Project Thunder was not revealed as Elbit until a March 2022 “public hearing prior to final action.” This was several months after the county’s economic development director had committed to granting the subsidiary tax incentives.

In earlier council discussions, county officials projected that Project Thunder would bring 302 full-time jobs to the area “during annual operation,” but Elbit America Communications Specialist Amy Hartley told the City Paper on Dec. 6 that the site had only around 50 full-time workers.

Hartley declined a City Paper request to tour Elbit’s Ladson plant “given heightened security concerns.” In recent weeks, there have been pro-Palestine demonstrations outside some of its locations. A security guard, however, said the South Carolina plant hasn’t had any recent issues.

Another statement from Hartley explicitly mentioned the site’s contract with the U.S. Army to manufacture Command Post Integrated Infrastructure trucks, despite recent press releases indicating that its main operation was fulfilling contracts from the Israeli Ministry of Defense (IMOD) to build an automated vehicle mounted with an artillery system called a howitzer.

Elbit advertises the South Carolina-built howitzer vehicle as having “high firepower and long-range lethality.” The IDF reportedly has used the vehicle to launch white phosphorus artillery strikes in “densely populated areas of Gaza,” which Human Rights Watch says “violates the requirement under international humanitarian law to take all feasible precautions to avoid civilian injury and loss of life.”

In March 2019, Elbit America received $125 million from IMOD to build “automatic self-propelled howitzer gun systems” for the IDF over a 12-year period, and the group secured a $200 million “further to” the 2019 contract one year later. In November 2023, Elbit announced that it was increasing deliveries to IMOD from various sites, including U.S. subsidiaries, to support the IDF’s invasion of Gaza.

That same month, a United States Field Artillery Association news release reported that, while the Ladson site is continuing production and delivery of U.S. Army vehicles, “Elbit America has recently started production of the Sigma-Next Generation Howitzer at their Charleston, South Carolina facility and will begin deliveries to the Israeli Defense Force in 2025.”

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CARTA’s plans to build facility at fairgrounds sparks controversy

LADSON, S.C. (WCSC) - Representatives of the Coastal Carolina Fair are voicing their concerns about Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority’s plans to build a park-and-ride facility at the fairgrounds.This park-and-ride facility is a part of CARTA’s Lowcountry Rapid Transit Plan – the first-ever large-scale transportation project in the region.CARTA Chairman Mike Seekings, says this $600 million plan is the result of over a decade of regional planning.“Large-scale transit projects are a ...

LADSON, S.C. (WCSC) - Representatives of the Coastal Carolina Fair are voicing their concerns about Charleston Area Regional Transportation Authority’s plans to build a park-and-ride facility at the fairgrounds.

This park-and-ride facility is a part of CARTA’s Lowcountry Rapid Transit Plan – the first-ever large-scale transportation project in the region.

CARTA Chairman Mike Seekings, says this $600 million plan is the result of over a decade of regional planning.

“Large-scale transit projects are a function on the front end of planning - a lot of planning - identifying the needs of a community, and seeing how we can meet those needs by planning out the alignment, finding the funding, and we’ve done all those things. So, we’re a good ways down the road right now,” Seekings says.

If plans go through, the facility will take up about six acres of the 180 acres available for parking on the fairgrounds. Mike Jernigan, a member of the Exchange Board as well as the former president of the Coastal Carolina Fair, says that their initial discussions with CARTA were about leasing an acre to an acre and a half of land for a bus stop, but he said that CARTA wanted more land to either purchase or take by eminent domain.

Seekings is surprised by this response. He says that they spoke with the leadership of the fairgrounds early in the process and have had conversations over many years about this area of land.

Officials with the Coastal Carolina Fair say that their issue is not the size of the facility, though, but the location. The park-and-ride facility would be located in lot 2A of the fairgrounds which is adjacent to Highway 78 and Gate 2 – one of the major entrances of the fairgrounds.

“We feel like supporting public transportation is a good thing. We’re not opposed to that in any way,” Jernigan says. We just feel like this location is the wrong location. That there are other options that are available adjacent to our property, or even at a different place on our property, but not to take our prime parking spot.”

Seekings says that throughout the conversations over the years, they have changed the intended location of this facility twice, and lot 2A was what was agreed upon.

“We’ve identified, through cooperative meetings with the Exchange Club, a number of different spaces. This last one we actually had a public hearing over at their request in August,” Seekings says. “So, we’re a long way down the road. It’s not signed, sealed and delivered, but it’s unlikely that we’re going to change the routing and change the manner in which we’ve gone through a long planning process. And now, at the eleventh hour, we’re ready, we’re ready to go implement this project - cooperatively, fairly to the benefit of all citizens in the region, including but not limited to those who are aligned with the Exchange Club and those who like to go to the fair.”

Jernigan disagrees. He says that they believe the location of the facility would disrupt patrons’ ability to enter and exit the fair, hurt fair revenue generation and impact the future success of the fair as well as their ability to support their community partners.

“This lot that would be affected by this potential park-and-ride disrupts our ability to park people efficiently. It would eliminate our ability to use one of our primary gates, and we feel like the effect of that on our parking means that we have less revenue and then less money to give away to the charities that depend on the profits from the fair,” Jernigan says.

The Coastal Carolina Fair supports about 70 different nonprofit organizations and charities in the area. CARTA and the fair representatives are not seeing eye-to-eye on this park-and-ride project. Seekings said they believe this project will actually have the opposite effect and be beneficial to the fair.

“Having access to the fair from public transit brings more people to the gate, enhances gate revenue, makes it more convenient, gives you many more local connections,” Seekings says. “It will be a very cooperative and beneficial experience for both sides of this and for the region.”

Jernigan says they just want to have more conversations about these plans and alternative solutions.

“We feel like there’s too much at stake here for the community, the charities we support and the long-term future of the fair to not have more discussion about other options which we feel like are available to CARTA in this general area - but you know, potentially even on the backside of the fair property - that need to be given consideration,” Jernigan says.

Jernigan says that even though the land is privately owned, the decision is ultimately not up to him, though, it is up to government officials.

Seekings says they want to make the plan work for everyone and enhance the experience for the community, but that it is unlikely much will change now that they are this far along. He says they want to implement this plan cooperatively and fairly and he believes there is some misunderstanding here. He says that this project is world-class public transit that works for everyone.

If plans go through, construction is slated to begin in 2026 and be completed by 2029.

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