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Two Coastal Cities On Tilt

Tuesday, March 26th witnessed two coastal towns, Myrtle Beach and Surfside Beach, equally in full tilt.

Myrtle Beach City Council authorized the city of Myrtle Beach to go into secret inter-governmental meetings with Surfside Beach, North Myrtle Beach, and Horry County [among others] over I-73 funding. However, shortly into the city council meeting it became clear that the process was being run by the city attorney, Tom Ellenberg, who is leaving office in June.

The town did not release the name of who the city’s representative would be in holding these negotiations. The town preferred to keep that identity secret, leaving Horry County Council Chairman Johhny Gardner as the only named person negotiating these secret meetings.

This lack of transparency allows the city to lay 100% of the blame on the Chairman when the funding negotiations either do not occur or fall apart. Sources close to city government informed us Myrtle Beach would prefer the $15 million in new tax revenues above funding I-73. The city made a token offer of $7.5 million annually, but is looking for a way out of that offer.

Current city of Myrtle Beach lawsuits with Horry County government allow the county to become the perfect patsy when the funding negotiations collapse.

SURFSIDE BEACH LAWLESSNESS

Last night in Surfside Beach, Surfside Beach City Council dismissed all but one on the city’s planning commission. This after the planning commission sued the city for risking the town’s CRS [flood insurance] rating when removing storm water requirements for the E District.

The town quickly reversed itself and put the storm water requirements back in place.

However, Surfside Beach Mayor Bob Childs, Councilman Randle Stevens, Councilwoman Debbie Scoles, and Councilman Bruce Dietrich voted to terminate practically the entire group last night. A packed auditorium felt the vote was payback for the lawsuit.

In a most appropriate surreal twist, on that same night, the Surfside Beach police chief put in a request that included closing the city’s jail.

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About David Hucks

Born in 1961, David is a 12th generation descendant of the area we now call Myrtle Beach, S.C. David attended Coastal Carolina University and like most of his family, has never left the area. David is the lead journalist at MyrtleBeachSC.com

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