Why should Aiken County residents care about a one-cent sales tax initiative that provides an avenue for new school construction financing for Aiken County? After all, according to Aiken’s Wikipedia page, in 2010, the national census revealed that 28.1 percent of households had children under the age of 18. It would suggest that Aiken is not one of the top destinations for folks with young families to settle.

As a 35-year-old Aiken resident since 1990, a local family business owner and a father of two toddlers, I can tell you that this sales tax increase initiative has everything to do with Aiken’s vision toward growth. Growing up in Aiken, I was a student of the Aiken County Public School System in the 90s. Even then, I can remember my classmates complaining about the outdated facilities. Driving by today, I can still see that Aiken County is falling way behind many other S.C. counties that have voted “yes” to a one-cent sales tax referendum.

Aiken County Public School District’s purpose states that their mission is to “create in students a passion for learning and achievement that will serve them as they complete and contribute in a global society.” Well, are we as citizens giving these students, our kids, our future, a true chance to complete in a global society in Aiken County? A “no” vote would certainly send a message that we are not.

The Aiken Chamber of Commerce’s website quotes, “It is often said that ‘you can’t have it all’ but whoever first uttered those words obviously had never been to Aiken. Come and see a place where you can have it all ... and perhaps more than you expected.” In November, vote yes to the one-cent sales tax so we can truly say that you can have it all in Aiken.

E. Ryan Reynolds