November 2020

A Note from our Mayors

Author:  | Photographer: Krisztian Lonyai

A Note from John McCann
Our Island’s Future: 2020-2040 Comprehensive Plan Guides the Way

You may be familiar with Benjamin Franklin’s quote, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” What I know for sure is our town is never planning to fail, and we never fail to plan. Planning is synonymous with all of our actions, and we rely on the planning process to guide our path forward to the future.

During our most recent Town Council meeting, we unanimously passed Our Plan, the 2020 to 2040 comprehensive plan for the Town of Hilton Head Island. Our Plan is foundational for the island’s growth and development. It provides a baseline of existing conditions and outlines goals, strategies, and tactics for the future of the town and island community. This document is crafted as a dynamic and informational guide that reflects integral components of the island community fabric. It also serves as a tool for the town and community leaders to strengthen and preserve the island culture, image, character, and unique sense of place. Finally, it embodies a vision towards the revitalization and modernization of our economy and infrastructure while building an inclusive and diverse community.

You may ask why such a document is needed. South Carolina’s Local Government Comprehensive Planning Enabling Act of 1994 requires that all planning commissions develop a comprehensive plan to guide development and redevelopment of its municipality. We could not have completed Our Plan without community engagement. Over 100 citizens representing a broad and diverse cross section of our community joined us in the process of developing this comprehensive plan. The outcome of many meetings held over the last 12 months is a very thorough plan that reflects diverse thoughts, historical perspectives, and future guidance on every aspect of our community, from parks and recreation to the economy and regional partnerships. It shows that we all have a stake in how our community is preserved and developed over the next 20 years.

With this plan approved, our next step is bringing the strategies and tactics entailed in it to life. This is not a plan that just sits on a shelf. It is a 370-page document filled with the ideas we want to use in making Hilton Head Island a better place when it comes to embracing our culture and our residents, protecting our environment, addressing issues such as workforce housing, and improving our parks, recreation, bridges and other facets of our community. I encourage you to take some time to peruse this comprehensive plan and get a feel for what’s in store for the future of Hilton Head Island.

As I close, I want to thank our town staff who dedicated themselves to completing this plan. They worked side-by-side with citizens and facilitated the process to fine tune the ideas, strategies and tactics that emerged through various teams. They were led by a group of citizens who made up the Our Plan Development Team, which was tasked with making sure all the teams worked in a manner to create a cohesive plan and met the goals of the process. On behalf of Town Council, I express my sincere appreciation to our citizens who served on the Development Team and the other work groups as part of this planning process.

To review the 2020-2040 comprehensive plan for the Town of Hilton Head Island, visit

A Note from Lisa Sulka
Welcome Police Chief Stephenie Price!

Bluffton’s new police chief was sworn in on Monday, October 12, and on behalf of Town Council, Town Manager Marc Orlando and all the men and women who serve the Bluffton community, we are thrilled she is here. Chief Price was the former assistant chief of police for Savannah, Georgia, and she plans to make Bluffton her new home. Her conviction, compassion and dedicated to best practices made her shine among the more than 100 candidates who applied for this position.

Throughout Price’s career, she has built a strong reputation for responsiveness, accountability, and innovation. She has extensive public safety experience with an emphasis in community-oriented policing and using innovation as a part of process improvements and problem-solving. As assistant chief of police for Savannah, Price supervised the administration and management bureau of the department, which includes the budget, canine unit, collateral duty, emergency management, fleet services, mounted patrol, recruiting, technology, traffic division, and training.

Price has more than 21 years of law enforcement experience, with the majority of her career serving the Kansas City, Missouri Police Department. While in Kansas City, she served as a detective, sergeant and captain in the following divisions: patrol, property crimes, internal affairs, domestic violence, narcotics/vice, regional training academy, and fiscal services. Prior to law enforcement, Price also served her community as an emergency medical technician (EMT), paramedic and a licensed practical nurse.

Price earned a Bachelor of Science degree in law enforcement from Park University in Parkville, Missouri and a master’s degree in business administration from Benedictine University in Atchison, Kansas.

Chief Price is looking forward to a long career as Bluffton’s police chief. She said she is very impressed with Bluffton’s high level of community pride, and she is excited to meet residents and listen to their needs and concerns while preparing the department for the future to meet those needs and concerns.

She places a high priority on wellness programs and said they are crucial components of building healthy relationships and partnerships with the community. She is dedicated to creating a culture of caring and compassion within the department and throughout their interactions with the Bluffton community.

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