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South Carolina TODS Eligibility Criteria

AgriTourism Facilities

    To be eligible for a business panel, an agritourism-oriented facility shall:

    1. be located in a rural area;

    2. be located on or accessible from a paved rural highway on the state highway system;

    3. offer agricultural activities related to production, harvest, processing, preservation, management, cultural, historical, recreational, educational, entertainment, and commercial activities, services and/or products to the general public;

    4. be unique and local in nature and not part of a chain of businesses having a common name under common ownership and management or under a franchise arrangement;

    5. have a permanent location and the agritourism-oriented activity shall be associated with a permanent building:
      1. constructed principally of brick, concrete block, stone, concrete, metal, or wood, or some combination of these materials; or
      2. from a mobile home or trailer which the applicant can prove is considered part of the real estate and taxed accordingly:
    6. be open to the public on a regular schedule and have at least one employee attendant at the activity site, performing work and available to the public for at least five (5) days per week, for at least six (6) hours per day (holidays excepted), for at least forty-eight (48) weeks per year; provided, however, that an agricultural operation open on a seasonal basis may be eligible for participation in the program provided it is open for business on a regular schedule with at least one employee attendant at the activity site for at least five (5) days per week, for at least six (6) hours per day (holidays excepted), for at least three (3) months out of the year;

    7. post its hours and days of operation at or near the main entrance so that they are visible to the public during closed as well as open hours;

    8. have electricity, public telephone or telephone with published phone number and answered at the activity, excluding call forwarding systems, running water, restrooms, drinking water, and adequate heating and cooling; provided, however, that this requirement may not apply to seasonal agricultural activities, services or products where it is not practical;

    9. if any general admission is charged, the costs of admission shall be clearly displayed to the prospective visitors at the entrance to the business;

    10. be located within five (5) miles of the intersecting route with a rural state primary highway were the program sign is to be erected;

    11. be an agritourism business qualified to participate in the SC Department of Agriculture promotional programs;

    12. have on-site signage that is visible from the fronting, paved rural highway;

    13. have driveway access from a paved public highway;

    14. provide off street parking accommodations with an exit having sufficient sight distance for motorists to safely enter the fronting roadway;

    15. be open to the general public and not by appointment or reservation only;

    16. to qualify a business shall list its location, operating season and hours, contact information with the Department of Agriculture and have one of the following;
      1. a reception structure;
      2. a controlled gate;
      3. a staffed reception and orientation point; or
      4. permanent interpretation panels or displays.
    17. To be eligible for the program, if an agritourism-oriented facility is located on a local paved road and more than one intersection from the nearest state route, the facility shall provide written documentation to ensure that the local government will provide similar directional signs on the right of way of the local system sufficient to guide motorist to the business.

Tourist Oriented Facilities

    To be eligible for a business panel, a tourism-oriented facility shall:

    1. be located in a rural area;

    2. be limited to the following services: gas, food, lodging, camping, educational, cultural, recreational, and entertainment activities, or a unique or unusual commercial or non-profit activity;

    3. be a business or facility that derives greater than 50% of its income or total visitors during a normal business season from road users not residing in the area of the business or facility:

    4. meet current compliance with all applicable laws concerning the provision of public accommodation without regard to race religion, color, age, sex, national origin or lifestyle or laws concerning the licensing and approval of public facilities;

    5. adhere to the safety standards and procedures that apply to the industry to which the operation belongs;

    6. be local in nature, and represent the unique cultural, historical, natural or recreational resources of the area and not be part of a chain of businesses having a common name under common ownership and management or under a franchise arrangement;

    7. be located within five (5) miles of an intersection with a rural primary route on the state highway system where the program sign is to be erected;

    8. have on-site signage that is visible from the fronting, paved rural highway;

    9. be ADA compliant;

    10. have available the following public services: electricity, public restrooms, drinking water, public telephones or telephone with published phone number and answered at the activity, excluding call forwarding systems, permanent flooring other than dirt, gravel, sand, etc., and adequate heating and cooling:

    11. post hours and days of operation at or near the main entrance so that they are visible to the public during closed as well as open hours;

    12. be open to the general public and not by appointment or reservation only;

    13. unless otherwise stated, be open to the public and have at least on employee attendant at the activity site, performing work and available to the public for at least eight (8) hours a day, for at least six (6) days a week, for a minimum of six (6) months a year;

    14. to qualify a business shall market its location, operating season and hours, contact information and have one of the following;
      1. a reception structure;
      2. a controlled gate;
      3. a staffed reception and orientation point; or
      4. permanent interpretation panels or displays.
    15. be willing to provide visitor information for surrounding area and region;

    16. have a driveway access from a paved public highway;

    17. provide off street parking accommodations with an exit having sufficient sight distance for motorists to safely enter the fronting roadway; and

    18. for bed and breakfast lodging, provide a minimum of four (4) sleeping units complete with private bath facilities for each sleeping unit and offer one or more meals to guest in a dining area separate from the sleeping rooms and provide lodging services for at least five (5) nights per week.

    19. To be eligible for the program, if a tourism-oriented facility is located on a local paved road and more than one intersection from the nearest state route, the facility shall provide written documentation to ensure that the local government will provide similar directional signs on the right of way of the local system sufficient to guide motorist to the business.

*Applications are reviewed and approved by the oversight committee at its semiannual meetings. Applications can be found at South Carolina TODS Applications.