High drama surrounding Surfside Beach City Council continued again today. Three of the five current City Councilmen walked out of Executive Session when two newly elected on council were invited into a closed meeting. The council meeting then abruptly ended.
The newly elected members, Debbie Scoles and Bruce Dietrich, have not yet been sworn into office and do not legally take office until early May. Surfside Beach operates under a Council form of government.
Surfside Beach City Councilman Randle Stevens told our news team, “During a scheduled meeting for an Executive Session at 6 PM on April 19th, 2018 to discuss a new administrator, Mayor Bob Childs tried to circumvent the Council Form of Government. There were 5 members of Council present at the meeting which constituted a Quorum. After the motion was made to go into Executive Session, Mayor Childs inform Council members and announced that both Council members elect Dietrich and Scoles would be attending the Executive Session. This matter should (under a Council Form of Government) been presented as a vote by a majority of Council. There had to be a motion made, discussion on the matter of Dietrich and Scoles attending the Executive Session, and either a vote taken or a consensus of Council Members present. This is the proper way under Roberts Rules of Order to handle this matter. Mayor Bob Childs on his own accord tried to circumvent and usurp Surfside Beach’s Council form of Government. An Abuse of Power by Mayor Bob Childs. No doubt about it. Looks like the dye has been cast and the collusion has started.“
Surfside Beach is a 1.6 mile beach town. It is one of the smallest municipality beach towns on the Grand Strand. The town is known for its family charm and outstanding community spirit. Locals there are highly involved in the community at large. Political infighting, however, has been a constant theme for the town for some period.
Surfside Beach City Council fully transitions in May adding the two new council members.