Post Tagged with: "Horry County"

International Drive Battle Continues – Update

September 13, 2016 7:09 AM
International Drive Battle Continues – Update

Update

The most important decision in the Administrative Law Court hearing yesterday was no decision.

Administrative Law Judge Ralph Anderson declined issuing a restraining order from the bench to stop construction on International Drive. Anderson said he needs more time to study the legal points argued and will issue a ruling later.

Meanwhile work to construct a road bed continues on International Drive.

Since work on the roadway began after Anderson ordered a state permit to be issued in August the issue of stopping that work became more complex because a federal permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was also issued.

Anderson said he doesn’t know if he, as a state judge, has the authority to issue a stay on a federal permit.

It’s a pretty sure bet he doesn’t and work will continue on the road bed for at least 30 more days as an appeal of Anderson’s August decision winds its way to the S.C. Court of Appeals.

——————————————————–

Not ready to give up their obstruction attempts, the Coastal Conservation League and the SC Wildlife Federation are taking the battle to federal court with a new lawsuit filed against Horry County, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Environmental Protection Agency.

Read more ›

Horry County Council’s Cowardly Road Decision

September 8, 2016 5:06 AM
Horry County Council’s Cowardly Road Decision

Horry County Council took the coward’s way out from making potentially controversial decisions when it passed third reading of a county road maintenance ordinance Tuesday night.

In passing the ordinance, council shifted the decision making process to county staff on which roads currently maintained by the county should be removed from further maintenance with county tax dollars.

The excuse is the county is maintaining some roads that are actually driveways or serve no public benefit.

There’s no question taxpayer dollars should not be spent on private driveways or other roads that do not generally benefit county taxpayers.

But what exactly is a public benefit?

In the past, county council allowed private gates to restrict access to public roads in the Myrtle Trace sub-division. Those roads were paved and maintained by the county but restricted to use by sub-division residents only.

When that issue was exposed in the media, Horry County Attorney John Weaver attempted to justify that it was perfectly legal to restrict access on public roads.

Ultimately, Myrtle Trace residents agreed to remove the roads from the county system and maintain them privately. But, that decision only came after the roads were repaved with county tax dollars one more time.

Council member Al Allen was correct in his criticism of county council being taken out of the decision to remove roads from county maintenance.

It takes a majority vote of county council to accept roads into the county road maintenance system. Why should it take a decision of only a few members of staff to remove roads from that same system?

Allen said the idea behind county staff making the determination of which roads to remove from the county road maintenance system was to take the politics out of the decision.

Read more ›

Environmentalists Spin International Drive Issues

August 30, 2016 5:54 AM
Environmentalists Spin International Drive Issues

It appears that a last ditch effort by the environmentalists to confuse the facts about paving International Drive is in motion.

Several recent reports in local, state and social media show the Coastal Conservation League and its allies are in spin mode about what is really happening.

After Horry County announced it was starting work on the International Drive road bed so it would be ready to handle emergency vehicles in 40-60 days, a post on the South Carolina Environmental Law Project Facebook page stated, “Yesterday we filed a notice of appeal and a motion for stay in our Bays & Bears case after we learned that Horry County began clearing for the construction of International Drive on Monday.”

Continuing legal action by the environmentalists is no surprise. This case has gone beyond the issues involved to a mano a mano showdown between the environmentalists and county officials.

However, it appears that the only avenue left for legal action by SCELP and the groups it represents is challenging the permit issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in federal court.

For the time being, Horry County has the necessary permits in hand and is using county employees for the work on the road bed.

The spin on the issue, however, started with the second sentence in the post, which read, “Still excited by the bulldozer photo-op, County Officials “told it like it is” about the whole project: hundreds, even thousands of new homes to be built along the road. So much for the public safety and emergency access invocations during the March trial.”

The post was apparently referring to a comment Horry County Council member Paul Prince was quoted as making to The State newspaper.

Read more ›

Zika Virus Case Confirmed in Horry County

August 26, 2016 4:34 PM
Mosquito sucking blood on a human hand

The first confirmed case of travel related Zika virus in Horry County has been reported in Plantation Point.

DHEC officials notified the county yesterday.

Nearby Florence County also has one reported case of travel related Zika virus.

In most instances, Zika virus is not fatal, but can be very damaging to fetuses.

According to local officials, Horry County has been working on a plan to combat Zika virus for approximately four months. In the case of Plantation Point, the county has reportedly been going door to door with information, eliminating areas of standing water and using foggers on properties.

What everyone should know:

Zika infection during pregnancy is linked to birth defects. Pregnant women should avoid or delay travel to areas with Zika.
Zika is primarily spread through the bite of an infected Aedes species mosquito.
Most people infected with Zika don’t even know they have it. People usually don’t get sick enough to go to the hospital.
In most cases Zika is not life-threatening.
The best way to prevent Zika is to prevent mosquito bites. Tips include:
– Apply EPA-approved insect repellent.
– Wear pants and long-sleeve shirts that cover exposed skin. In warmer weather, wear lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that covers exposed skin.
– Use screens or close windows and doors to keep mosquitoes out of your home.
– Remove standing water in and around the home. This includes water in cans, toys, tires, plant saucers, or any container that can hold water.
– Cover trash cans or containers where water can collect.
See a health care provider if you develop a fever, rash, joint pain, or red eyes during a trip orwithin 2 weeks after traveling to a place with Zika, or if you have had sexual contact with someone who has traveled.

Citizens with questions can call the county’s road and drainage hotline at (843) 381-8000 for more information.

Read more ›

Guns and Where to Fire Them

August 24, 2016 5:04 PM
Guns and Where to Fire Them

Where guns can be fired is a question Horry County Council will struggle with over the next several months.

Infrastructure and Regulation Committee Chairman Johnny Vaught told a group of concerned citizens from the Hillsborough sub-division Tuesday that the county would not be locating a public firing range on Horry County Solid Waste Authority property near their development.

This announcement ended months of concern for those citizens that their peaceful community would be disrupted with the sound of weapons being fired nearby.

Vaught said the county would continue to look for a suitable piece of property in the more rural sections of the county in which to possibly locate a firing range.

Whether the county should get into the firing range business at all is a legitimate question being asked by citizens throughout the county. There are several privately owned firing ranges already in the county and there is strong feeling among some citizens that government should not compete with private business.

The Horry County Public Safety Committee discussed a different gun problem the day before. There is increasing concern among the county’s many sub-divisions of residents taking target practice on their property even though they are in close proximity to neighboring homes.

Horry County Council member Paul Prince said something should be done to prohibit such activity in sub-divisions where the houses are close together.

It’s been slightly over four years since Horry County Council decided not to vote on an ordinance that would restrict gun usage on private property in close proximity to other residences.

At that time, the ‘Duck Dynasty crowd’, in full camouflage, packed council chambers to protest any restriction on their 2nd Amendment rights with respect to where they could fire their guns in the unincorporated areas of the county.

Read more ›

International Drive Construction Begins

August 22, 2016 1:23 PM
International Drive Construction Begins

(Pictured above Horry County Council member Johnny Vaught (left) and Horry County Council Chairman Mark Lazarus.)

After a series of legal delays orchestrated by the Coastal Conservation League and its allies, Horry County is moving forward on constructing the road bed on International Drive.

According to sources familiar with the court proceedings, a SC District Court judge ordered the permits issued after Horry County won the latest round in court.

Now, with the SCDHEC water quality and US Army Corps of Engineers wetland fill permits in hand, county officials hope to have the road bed ready for emergency vehicles within 60 days.

Further court challenges from CCL could be forthcoming. But, for the present, work on International Drive is moving forward.

The entire project will not be completed for approximately 12 months. Requests for Proposals from contractors desiring to bid on the project are expected to be advertised in October.

Meanwhile Horry County employees from the county’s Infrastructure and Regulation Division are completing preliminary work such as right of way clearing and getting the road bed up to standards that can handle emergency vehicles. This is expected to be accomplished over the next 60 days.

The picture accompanying this post shows Horry County Council member Johnny Vaught and Horry County Council Chairman Mark Lazarus standing in front of a bulldozer with a picture of Vaught’s late uncle, Lt. Gen. James B. Vaught, on the blade.

Read more ›

Heroin Epidemic Raises Awareness of Community Problems

August 19, 2016 8:57 AM
Heroin Epidemic Raises Awareness of Community Problems

The heroin epidemic in Horry County has reached proportions that seems to finally have spurred local government agencies to begin addressing violence and other problems throughout Horry County.

Six months ago, community activists Bennie Swans, Jon Bonsignor and Tim McCray approached Myrtle Beach City Council for help in addressing violence in the community.

They were essentially turned away with Mayor John Rhodes giving his impression of a Donald Trump style ‘gotcha’, blaming the community for the problem, attacking the activists and claiming the focus on community violence would hurt tourism.

The three got a better reception at the Horry County Council level with the establishment of a Community Violence Subcommittee formed to investigate the problem and make a report including recommendations for ways to counter the rising problems of violent crime and drugs in the communities.

To date, that committee has floundered by becoming involved in a comparison study of minutiae related to Horry County and counties in other states, but, at least, it is doing something and, hopefully, will eventually find its way.

Tuesday night, the City of Myrtle Beach hosted an overflow crowd to a community meeting on the heroin epidemic at the Base Recreation Center near Market Common.

By all reports, the meeting was a good one. One could argue it was six months late, but at least a positive acknowledgement that there is a problem and it is going to take the entire community – citizens, community activists, law enforcement and other government agencies, the schools and various non-profits – working together to address the problem.

Read more ›

Community Violence Subcommittee Stuck in Neutral

July 24, 2016 5:39 AM
Community Violence Subcommittee Stuck in Neutral

For the last three months, the Horry County Community Violence Subcommittee appears to have been stuck in neutral rather than moving forward to address the problems of violent crime in communities throughout the county.

In its last three meetings, Community Violence Subcommittee members have been discussing collection of data, both demographics and crime, from various websites in order to compare Horry County to counties from North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida.

Will this data collection and comparison help?

One assumes what is happening in communities such as Burgess, Poplar, Socastee and Racepath is more important than what is happening in Chatham County, Georgia or Orange County, Florida if the goal is to counter crime and its effects in Horry County.

(If the goal is to complete a report on how Horry County stacks up to other counties in relation to those statistics, then the current work of the subcommittee is on track.)

It would seem that meetings with pastors and other community leaders as well as parents and citizens would yield better information about what the problems are and what the community can do to counter those problems as well as what help it needs from sources such as police and other government agencies.

At one time, Horry County had effective Crimestoppers, D.A.R.E. and community policing programs that have fallen by the wayside in recent years.

The committee is currently scheduled to make a report on its progress at the September 26, 2016, meeting of the Horry County Public Safety Committee. At that time, it plans to present a survey form, presumably developed from its data mining, for citizens, at least in designated high crime areas, to fill out and return.

After receiving the completed survey forms, there seems to be some desire among subcommittee members to meet with citizens and leaders in various communities in the county.

Read more ›

Enjoying the CLEAC Cookout

July 20, 2016 7:13 AM
Credit: JASON LEE jlee@thesunnews

Let me give you a first-hand account of the fabulous Saturday we had at the Cook-Out themed “Connecting Cops, Kids and the Community” sponsored by CLEAC.

Over 500 guests from the communities, Sheriff & Police Officers, Fire Fighters and First Responders enjoyed thrill of the kids interacting, with the Fire-Sheriff-Police and politicians, at the magnificent North Myrtle Beach Sports Complex.

Everyone had a fun time and played sports and games assembled by the efficient personnel staff from the NMB Recreation department. Sheriff Phil Thompson, with an assist from Chief Deputy Sheriff Tom Fox at their booth, greeting everyone who came by plus the Sheriff’s staff handed out silver Junior Sheriff badges to the many kids who came by to say ” Hi Sheriff”.

Horry Police Deputy Chief Maurice Jones and Capt Bob Carr went around greeting and getting to know the people of the community and children. Carr went one step further throwing and competing with the kids at bean ball, and fishing at a simulator provided by DHEC.

Public safety Director Jay Fernandez standing by the new Fire Rig, with its ladder soaring high above the truck, looked quite happy at the many people who came by to where he greeted them with a big smile. Director Jay and the Fire personnel guided the kids to the Fire truck to blare the fire siren, shoot the water cannon, receive red fire hats, and run through water sprinklers.

The Myrtle Beach P D brought along their K-9 unit and SWAT team..naturally the kids and adults adored the German Shepard, a big gorgeous looking dog. The Shepard was calm, friendly and beautiful and was unfazed by the petting, kisses and of the huge attention it was getting.

The weather was perfect for a cook-out. There were plenty of games, sports activities. The looks on the happy faces of the kids showed their delight.

What was as joyful was to see Chairman Mark Lazarus playing football with the young future stars, with Councilman Harold Worley as an impartial spectator looking at the action.

Read more ›

Vote for Reese Boyd in Senate District 34

June 24, 2016 4:44 AM
Vote for Reese Boyd in Senate District 34

The right choice to represent the people in Senate District 34 unquestionably is REESE BOYD.

Reese is a fair-minded, no nonsense politician. He is a leader who will vote for the best interests of his constituents, not for the Columbia BOSSES and special interests who line campaign coffers of his opponent.

Reese Boyd was born in Conway, graduated from Davidson College & University of S C School of Law. He is a member of the: Horry County GOP, South Strand Republican Club, the Grand Strand Opera Workshop, Palmetto Family Council. Reese lives in Murrells Inlet with his wife Lee, and two children Leila & Reese IV.

Despite what you have heard from his opponent and third party PACs who support his opponent, Reese Boyd is the true AND ONLY Conservative in the runoff election for Senate District 34.

Reese Boyd supports:

Term limits
Less government bureaucracy and interference in people’s lives
The Southern Evacuation Lifeline
Overhaul of Medicaid in the state
A real plan to fix the state’s roads
Fixing the erroneous FEMA flood plain maps
Protecting our beaches
During this campaign, Reese has been subjected to vicious attacks by his opponent and his opponent’s supporters, all of which are untrue. His opponent’s campaign is a classic example of – if you have nothing good to say about yourself, attack your opponent.

In this election, you have a clear choice between Reese Boyd, a conservative who will look out for the interests of his constituents, and his opponent who only looks out for himself.

I URGE YOU, to GO to the polls on Tuesday June 28th and vote again for REESE BOYD. He is an honest, true blue champion of the people, a person you can trust and the right man to be our NEW Senator.

Thank you for your consideration.

Read more ›