Post Tagged with: "lawsuits"

Eldridge’s Tangled Web of Contradictions

March 10, 2019 4:31 AM
Eldridge’s Tangled Web of Contradictions

Horry County Administrator Chris Eldridge spun a tangled web of contradictions with his responses to council at last week’s special council meeting during which Eldridge told his version of how SLED was called to investigate Chairman Johnny Gardner.

Eldridge was grilled by council members Al Allen, Johnny Vaught, Danny Hardee, Orton Bellamy and Paul Prince on why all members of council were neither consulted prior to calling for a SLED investigation nor told about a request to SLED after it was made.

Most of council had to read about the matter being referred to SLED and SLED investigating the allegations in articles published by Columbia media outlet Fitsnews. And it was those articles that caused Eldridge the most difficulty last week.

As demonstrated by his December 12, 2018 email to Neyle Wilson and Sandy Davis of the Myrtle Beach Regional Economic Development Corporation, county attorney Arrigo Carotti, county chairman Mark Lazarus and council member Gary Loftus, Eldridge already had his story firmly in mind about what happened during a lunch meeting between Gardner, Luke Barefoot, Davis and her co-worker Sherri Steele.

Eldridge accused EDC of not allowing him access to a tape recording of the meeting after Wilson had already offered twice to allow Eldridge to listen to the recording in an email of December 7, 2018 with a follow up email December 12th. It was Wilson’s December 12th email that elicited Eldridge’s confusing accusations to Wilson.

One other interesting point, while Eldridge used the business emails of Wilson, Davis and Carotti, he used the personal emails of Lazarus and Loftus. Was he trying to hide this from other council members?

After ultimately listening to the recording on December 19, 2019, Eldridge sent a five-page memo, authored by Carotti, by email to all council members after 6 p.m. at night. The Carotti memo was leaked to Fitsnews virtually immediately and appeared less than 12 hours later on the media outlet’s website.

Eldridge stated several times during the special council meeting that no council members other than Lazarus and Loftus knew about his allegations until they received Carotti’s memo.

Read more ›

The Consent of the Governed

July 4, 2018 7:19 AM
The Consent of the Governed

Among its many memorable phrases, the Declaration of Independence states, “…That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it,..”

Too often, governments, or the people who run them, forget about the people. They become too concentrated on personal agendas or too impressed with their own perceived importance.

In the United States, we have a form of representative democracy in our local, state and federal governments. When governments become destructive with respect to the ends desired by the people, the people vote out representatives and replace them with others more in tune with their wishes.

We have seen this result in recent local elections where incumbent officeholders were voted out in two different city elections, the school board, a state legislative seat and the Horry County Council Chairman.

None of the losers are bad persons, they just lost touch with the people whose consent they needed to stay in office.

A few of their transgressions include:

Questionable land purchases with public dollars, often discussed in secret, while public infrastructure needs are ignored
Selective use of the Freedom of Information Act provisions to avoid disclosing information the public has a right to know
Ignoring public safety needs at the expense of the welfare of first responders and the citizens they protect
Public disagreements with other elected officials resulting in needless lawsuits that waste public dollars rather than using those dollars for improved service
Economic development trips to China with no results
Strict adherence to boondoggles such as Interstate 73 while more pressing infrastructure needs go unmet

Read more ›