Post Tagged with: "city elections"

Storms Near as Myrtle Beach City Elections Filing Closes

September 8, 2017 9:01 AM
Storms Near as Myrtle Beach City Elections Filing Closes

It seems appropriate that filing closes for the upcoming Myrtle Beach city elections as the area awaits the possibility of tropical storm conditions.

This election cycle has already been stormy with more to come.

The incumbents running for reelection, Mayor John Rhodes and council members Randal Wallace and Mike Lowder, have received justified criticism of decisions made by council over the last several years.

I was looking back on stories from the election cycle two years ago. In one, I quoted an op-ed column by Mande Wilkes written three weeks before the 2015 election.

Wilkes criticized the “Asian fetish” of Myrtle Beach City Council while stifling local business investors with “the bizarre zoning laws, the oppressive signing ordinances, the climbing licensing fees, and the restrictive parking policies.”

“All of these rules add up to a suffocating environment for businesses, and that’s why Highway 17 is littered with empty storefronts and dilapidated buildings,” Wilkes wrote.

While the “Asian fetish” appears to be in the midst of a severe ‘crash and burn’, many of Wilkes’ other criticisms have not only not been addressed, but instead have been added to.

Shootings on Ocean Boulevard, indeed throughout the city, have been on the rise and city council responded with barricades along a section of Ocean Boulevard it apparently wants to redevelop.

The city surreptitiously bought up property in the Superblock area and, when it was exposed, threatened remaining private landholders with the use of eminent domain to acquire their properties.

The publicly stated reason for this land acquisition by the city – a new building for Chapin Memorial Library, a private-public partnership entity, and a new building for the totally private Children’s Museum.

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Changes Needed From City Elections

November 1, 2015 5:55 AM
Changes Needed From City Elections

City elections in three local municipalities could bring much needed changes to the way those communities work for their citizens.

Those three communities are Conway, Atlantic Beach and Myrtle Beach.

Below, we have highlighted the candidates we believe are most likely to bring new ideas that will lead to much needed positive change for those municipalities.

Conway

Mayor and three council seats up for election.
City council member Barbara Blain-Bellamy is continuing to build momentum in her attempt to unseat incumbent Mayor Alys Lawson.
Blain-Bellamy is well known to Conway voters. She has been elected to city council three times and has led the ticket each time. This is not an outsider attempting to unseat an incumbent mayor.

Blain-Bellamy’s message of finding new ways to ward off the influence of gangs and crime in Conway’s neighborhoods and listening to the concerns of citizens throughout the city highlight her message.

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Myrtle Beach Fantasyland

October 23, 2015 7:00 AM
Myrtle Beach Fantasyland

Fantasyland has arrived in Myrtle Beach.

No, it’s not a new attraction or theme park.

It’s the attitude and atmosphere that surrounds the biennial Myrtle Beach city elections.

Mayor John Rhodes (who is not up for reelection until 2017) stepped into the middle of this year’s election rhetoric a couple of nights ago at a Neighborhood Watch meeting at Market Common.

According to numerous sources at the meeting, Rhodes attacked non-incumbents running for the three city council seats in this year’s election cycle by claiming the challengers were lying to voters.

Rhodes said these challenger candidates were misleading citizens by claiming crime is an increasing problem in the city and using independent rating reports to substantiate their claims.

Rhodes referred to a city generated report which, reportedly, said crime is the lowest it’s been in the city since the city began keeping statistics 20 years ago.

According to Rhodes, crime in Myrtle Beach is at a 20-year low!

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Myrtle Beach City Election Runup

October 10, 2015 7:17 AM
Myrtle Beach City Election Runup

The Myrtle Beach city elections are just over three weeks away and the game of keep the incumbents in power is in full swing.

There were competing op-eds in local media recently between local writer Mande Wilkes and Myrtle Beach public information officer Mark Kruea that are of note in this election season.

The opinions expressed in the two columns demonstrate the current disconnect between Myrtle Beach city officials and the people who live and work in the city.

Wilkes criticized the “Asian fetish” of Myrtle Beach City Council while stifling local business investors with “the bizarre zoning laws, the oppressive signing ordinances, the climbing licensing fees, and the restrictive parking policies.”

“All of these rules add up to a suffocating environment for businesses, and that’s why Highway 17 is littered with empty storefronts and dilapidated buildings,” Wilkes wrote.

“I wonder if it’s common for a relatively small-town mayor to be paid to jetset across the globe,” Wilkes speculated.

We agree with Wilkes’ assessment. Myrtle Beach City Council ignores locals while looking for big hitters from abroad.

She stung council enough that an official response was deemed necessary.

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Myrtle Beach – A Tale of Two Cities

October 10, 2013 6:00 AM
Myrtle Beach – A Tale of Two Cities

Two neighborhood watch meetings in Myrtle Beach in recent days highlight the great divide that separates the city, according to several candidates in this year’s city election.

A meeting of the Withers Swash Neighborhood Crime Watch group was filled with complaints about three home invasions, one that included a rape of a woman with a gun, an armed robbery, drug deals in church parking lots, prostitution arrests and a shootout on Maple Street, among other incidents all in the last month.

To say the group attending the meetings was irate is to minimize the feelings in the room. However, being on the south end of the city, the neighbors are used to serious crime and minimal police presence.

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Myrtle Beach Government Fit for Middle Ages

August 25, 2013 8:00 AM
Myrtle Beach Government Fit for Middle Ages

As Myrtle Beach prepares for its 2013 city council elections, the city continues its regressive governance slide to more closely resemble an English town of the Middle Ages rather than a modern American town.

Four incumbents on Myrtle Beach city council filed for re-election last week. Incumbent Mayor John Rhodes was joined by incumbent council members Wayne Gray, Randal Wallace and Mike Lowder at city hall on August 22nd to file their candidacies.

Rhodes is seeking his third consecutive term, Wallace his fourth consecutive, Gray his fourth overall and Lowder his second.

And right now, those four plus challenger Keith Van Winkle may be the complete slate sent to the voters in the November 5th general election.

There was a time when Myrtle Beach elections were raucous affairs, but in the last decade, the town has gone back in time to match a more rigid, hierarchical structure.

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