UPDATE: On Tuesday, November 14, 2021, this ordinance was sent back to committee for review. After concerns were raised by Horry County residents, this ordinance is likely NOT to pass as originally written.
On November 16th, Horry County Council passed first reading of a fireworks ban ordinance which South Carolina state law makes illegal.
This ordinance, as written, directly contravenes both the spirit and letter of state law.
The proposed ordinance, 155-2021, sub-section c states: “County No Fireworks Areas shall be any geographic location, as determined by County Council, wherein the prohibition against fireworks under this section is deemed appropriate. Such areas may be designated only by Resolution of County Council and must state with adequate specificity the area encompassed as to be readily identifiable by the general public and Horry County officials and employees.”
State law, section 23-35-175 (C) states “an owner, a lessee or managing authority of real property may establish a Fireworks Prohibited Zone by (1) filing a Discharge of Fireworks Prohibited Agreement with the law enforcement agency having jurisdiction over the subject property.”
As Paul Gable of the Grand Strand Daily correctly published:
State law goes on to say the zone must exhibit at least two signs, stating fireworks are prohibited visible from the street and any adjoining public property. In addition, the owner, lessee or managing authority of the property may request county council to extend the prohibited zone up to 500 feet into any adjoining public property such as a park or to the low water mark of a public beach adjoining the property.
State law is specific in that the initial action must come from the property owner, lessee or managing authority to the law enforcement agency. There is no provision in state law for the initial action to come directly from county council. Any direct action by county council would be a usurpation of property rights by county council on any property included in a county council initiated prohibition and is not allowed by state law.
WHY GO ROGUE?
Once again, sources close to MyrtleBeachSC News point out that it is the hotel lobby friends of certain council members pushing this illegal action.
Several council candidates are largely beholden to the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce and its cronies along the coast.
A large divide is now clear among Horry County’s 350,000 residents.
The West side of the Intracoastal Waterway is comprised of law abiding residents wanting government of the people and for the people.
A handful of about 18 concerns along the oceanfront want to write the laws that all other residents are required to live within and under.
How much longer will 18 corporate and family concerns connected to the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce continue to hold sway over 350,000 residents?
Passing this rogue law will likely lead to more lawsuits, hitting county residents in the pocketbook once again.
Horry County Council has a staff lawyer named Arrigo Carrotti at their beck and call. This man supposedly knows the law and the area.
Why would he not give wise legal council in a matter such as this?