Post Tagged with: "Horry County Council"

International Drive Delay SCDNR Fault

May 21, 2015 6:03 AM
International Drive Delay SCDNR Fault

Recently several members of Horry County Council reported receiving inquiries why there is no work being done on International Drive.

The questioners mean well. The road is needed, but they are asking the wrong people.

The delay in finishing International Drive can be laid directly at the feet of overreaching state bureaucrats.

Specifically, SC Department of Natural Resources officials have, seemingly, intentionally held up finishing and paving the road bed of International Drive for over 10 years.

Initially the SCDNR attempted to keep Horry County from even considering expanding International Drive from its original dirt track through the woods into a passable, two lane road because of alleged red cockaded woodpeckers supposedly nesting in the right of way.

It was ludicrous, but underneath lay a bigger problem – for whatever reason, SCDNR did not want the road built.

After several years of being stalled, the county managed to solve problem by changing the position of the International Drive right of way to avoid the alleged woodpecker habitat.

As the county got into serious planning and acquired the funds to complete International Drive, SCDNR shifted its concerns to black bears in the woods near the road. This included forcing the county to plan for bear crossing tunnels underneath the road, raising the cost of construction and further delaying the start.

This SCDNR roadblock was, again, ridiculous. By this logic, most roads in Horry County, at least west of the waterway, should include bear crossing tunnels.

Retired Army Lt. Gen. James Vaught, a strong supporter of the International Drive project, asked a meeting of Horry County Council the question, “Where is a black bear going to cross the road?” He provided the answer in his own inimitable style, “Any damn where he pleases!”

Read more ›

Horry County Airport Advisory Board Dissolution

May 16, 2015 6:00 AM
Horry County Airport Advisory Board Dissolution

The proposed dissolution of the Horry County Airport Advisory Board currently being considered by Horry County Council is a mistake.

This has not always been my attitude.

From the late 1990’s through approximately 2008, the board was a rubber stamp for some of the worst decisions made by Horry County Department of Airports staff.

Read more ›

Horry County Council Tax Increase

May 1, 2015 9:15 AM
Horry County Council Tax Increase

As Horry County Council continues talks on next fiscal year’s budget, a large increase in county taxes will be part of the deliberations.

According to county sources familiar with budget planning, a tax increase of approximately 6.3 mills for the county’s general operating fund is being considered by Horry County Council.

The plan amounts to a 17.7% increase in county tax millage for the general operating fund, which is expected to bring in an additional $13-$15 million in new tax revenue.

Read more ›

Overseeing Horry County Department of Airports

April 28, 2015 7:00 AM
Overseeing Horry County Department of Airports

Oversight of the Horry County Department of Airports may change based on an ordinance that will be considered by the county’s Administration Committee.

The ordinance, if approved by Horry County Council, would eliminate the Horry County Airport Advisory Board.

The Airport Advisory Board is appointed by Horry County Council. It meets once a month to provide input and recommendations to council about airport matters.

In the past, the Airport Advisory Board has been a rubber stamp for airport staff and Horry County Council, especially on issues like new terminals at Myrtle Beach International Airport. Frankly, it failed to perform its advisory oversight mission.

More recently, however, it was questions by several board members that led to not tearing down portions of the old terminal complex at the airport.

Read more ›

Horry County Council Delays Airport Work

April 23, 2015 6:00 AM
Horry County Council Delays Airport Work

I was happy to see Horry County Council table a budget amendment Tuesday for façade work on the old passenger terminal at Myrtle Beach International Airport.

The action keeps $3.5 million from being spent needlessly since plans for what to do with that portion of the old terminal don’t exist.

Saving $3.5 million is a drop in the bucket of money that has been spent needlessly at the airport over the last 15-20 years.

Read more ›

Coast RTA 4th Quarter Funding Approved

April 22, 2015 6:00 AM
Coast RTA 4th Quarter Funding Approved

Coast RTA will receive its 4th quarter funding from Horry County despite not completing some required tasks in its funding agreement with the county.

However, if Horry County Council comments Tuesday night were any indication, it is still unclear if Coast RTA will receive the same level, or any, funding from the county in the new fiscal year that begins July 1, 2015.

By an 8-3 vote, council followed the suggestion of council chairman Mark Lazarus to release 4th quarter funding “for the public’s benefit, for riders and for employees (of Coast RTA).”

Read more ›

Horry County Department of Airports Terminal Expenditures

April 15, 2015 6:00 AM
Horry County Department of Airports Terminal Expenditures

The Horry County Department of Airports is preparing to spend at least $10 million refurbishing the old passenger terminal building.

This is on top of the approximately $120 million spent in the last few years for a new terminal building.

There should be some justification for these expenses, but it’s hard to fathom what that is when looking at passenger numbers at Myrtle Beach International Airport.

Read more ›

Blaine Garren Announces Candidacy for District 6

April 10, 2015 5:30 AM
Blaine Garren Announces Candidacy for District 6

Blaine Garren announced his candidacy for the open Horry County Council seat in District 6 during a press conference Friday.

The press conference was held at 3 p.m. at the Socastee Library on Hwy 707.

A special election will be held to select a new member to fill the unexpired term of recently deceased council member Bob Grabowski.

Read more ›

Coast RTA Funding Problems Continue

April 8, 2015 8:00 AM
Coast RTA Funding Problems Continue

If perception is reality in politics, Coast RTA funding from Horry County is in deep trouble.

That is the perception I have after watching last night’s Horry County Council meeting.

It centers around one huge public relations gaffe and several shortfalls on the part of Coast RTA.

It’s not a good thing when the chairman of Horry County Council says to Coast RTA representatives “it’s almost as if we don’t exist up here” and “that board (Coast) is not taking this county council seriously.”

Read more ›

Horry County Council Looks at Airports

April 7, 2015 6:00 AM
Horry County Council Looks at Airports

One of the more interesting discussions at the recent Horry County Council budget retreat dealt with the county’s Department of Airports.

Concerns were expressed about the county’s three general aviation airports, Grand Strand, Conway and Loris, all losing money.

The Department of Airports showed a net operating loss of approximately $150,000 last year. The three general aviation airports accounted for a total loss of approximately $400,000 while Myrtle Beach International Airport showed a profit of approximately $250,000.

Read more ›
Skip to toolbar