Counties Reeling In South Carolina's Boat Tax

Wilmington, NC – A pair of coastal South Carolina counties is aiming to pass a tax break that could bring back certain boats docked in North Carolina.

Boats are considered personal property in South Carolina and are taxed 10.5% of their assessed value.

Lawmakers concerned about the number of boats docked outside the state passed legislation allowing counties to consider certain boats as real property, allowing them to be taxed at 4% if considered primary residence and 6% if considered a secondary residence.

Georgetown County Councilman Jerry Oakley says several marinas have come before the council worried about so called boat flight.

And I think it's probably prospective as much as it is retrospective, a concern that boats will be leaving in the future more so than those who may have already left for lower taxes.

Oakley says Georgetown and Horry counties are the first to float changes to the statewide boat tax.