By Paul Gable
One clear choice has emerged in the race to replace retiring council member Carl Schwartzkopf in Horry County District Eight. That choice is Candace Howell.
Howell brings a new voice and a new perspective to Horry County issues rather than the same old, tired mentality of too many candidates. She is focused on improving Horry County, especially in the area of jobs, so that today’s children can have a bright future in their home area.
Schwartzkopf recently said of Howell, “Candace Howell would bring a breath of fresh air and a change in perspective to Horry County Council. She is far and away the most impressive candidate in the race.”
Schwartzkopf said at a recent candidates’ forum in Carolina Forest, Howell’s answers to questions ” knocked the ball not only out of the park, but out of the parking lot.”
Howell came to Horry County as a television news reporter for WPDE-TV 15 in the early 2000’s. Deciding to make Horry County her permanent home, Howell moved into marketing and public relations for Lakewood Resort, Coastal Uncorked and the Myrtle Beach Regional Economic Development Corporation before assuming her current position as Department Chair and Associate Professor of the Department of Business at Horry-Georgetown Technical College as well as Adjunct Professor of Public Relations and Special Topics at Coastal Carolina University.
“I love being in the classroom,” Howell said. “The college is at the heart of the community and it is great to be a part of the teaching process. I want my children to have the opportunity to go to college and find a good job in Horry County if they want to stay here and be part of the community.”
To work toward that goal, Howell supports diverse job creation in Horry County to build a stronger economy.
Howell’s main competition in the race, Johnny Vaught, is telling voters what a good ole Horry County boy he is and is another candidate trying to parlay long associations into votes.
Several issues that Vaught has mentioned during his campaign are troubling. He claims to be for less intrusive government yet he has supported solid waste flow control, a program that established a government monopoly over the flow of solid waste in the county at the expense of several private businesses who lost jobs as a result.
Vaught advocates expanding the Myrtle Beach International Airport. Has he been in a coma for the last 10 years?
After an absolutely ridiculous one-half billion dollar proposal to expand the airport to three runways and build a 32 gate terminal was defeated in 2007, a smaller, yet expensive, terminal built.
That $130 million terminal, which includes $70 million in 30 year bonds, was opened last year, but the passenger count into Myrtle Beach remains stagnant around 800,000 per year.
Does Vaught believe if you build it they will come or does Vaught have another WestJet deal in mind to waste taxpayer dollars?
He sounds much more like a big spending, big government advocate.
The third candidate in the race is Daniel Cochrane who has been a Republican Party functionary and a leader in the Fair Tax.org movement, but doesn’t seem to be inspiring much attention outside his known circle.
It’s time to elect someone with a fresh vision, new ideas and the motivation to see them through. Horry County does not need the same old, tired, recycled ideas of the past.
The Coastal Carolina Association of Realtors obviously agrees. Despite Vaught having some long-time friends in the association, CCAR endorsed Candace Howell in the District Eight Race.
The voters in the Republican Primary for Horry County Council District 8 should support the candidate who will serve both their and the county’s interests best in the June 10th Republican Primary.
That candidate is Candace Howell.