Tag: Mark Lazarus

WestJet Guarantee to Cost Horry County Half Million

If current passenger expectations remain valid through the end of October, Horry County will pay WestJet over $500,000 pursuant to a guarantee to the airline county council approved in February 2013.

According to a source familiar with airport operations, the county is already in the hole to WestJet to the tune of $325,000 and expects the bottom line, after WestJet ends this year’s operations October 31st, to be approximately $510,000.

County council approved setting aside a contingency fund of up to $1 million that would be used to guarantee WestJet 60% occupancy, the break-even point for WestJet, on each flight to Myrtle Beach. The county would buy up empty seats on each flight so WestJet would not lose money.

WestJet won’t lose money, but the county did.

The Adult Entertainment Issue Churns On – Udated

After the meeting between county government officials and members of the Carolina Forest Civic Association on adult entertainment sites Wednesday night, we received the following email from Todd Martin, Corporate Spokesperson for Adult Entertainment Video, LLC:

Press Release

Representatives of our organization were in attendance at tonight’s Carolina Forest Civic Association meeting. Janet Carter offered, yet again, another vague and misleading presentation. She cannot identify specific parcels of property on the Carolina Forest 501 corridor, yet she continually refers to them. While these overly broad, Constitutionally defective proposed ordinances were discussed, the folks in Carolina Forest did not receive one bit of clarification or further information than what has already been reported by the media.

Second Reading of Adult Entertainment Ordinances Passes

Horry County passed second reading of its new adult entertainment ordinances at its regular meeting Tuesday night bringing its day in court closer.

Passage of third reading seems assured next month and as council chairman Mark Lazarus said, the next day he expects the current adult entertainment establishments operating in the unincorporated areas of Horry County to be in Florence filing for injunctive relief.

While all of the current adult entertainment businesses will be out of compliance with the new ordinances, adult entertainment will not be removed from the unincorporated areas.

Mark Lazarus Hits a Grand Slam

With just a few appearances as Horry County Council chairman under his belt, Mark Lazarus hit a grand slam home run at Tuesday night’s regular meeting of council.

After many years of despairing over poor to non-existent leadership on Horry County Council, Lazarus has quickly stepped into the void, in my opinion.

He runs a good meeting and the other 11 council members seem comfortable with him at the helm. That’s certainly not a statement that could have been made very often, if at all, over the last several decades.

Republican Nomination to Mark Lazarus

Mark Lazarus earned the Republican nomination for Horry County Council chairman Tuesday night defeating Al Allen by a 55% – 45% margin in a special primary election runoff. With no Democratic candidate, Lazarus should be guaranteed a win in the special election April 30, 2013.

I say ‘should be’ because voter turnout was so horrible it’s not beyond the pale that someone could put together a last minute write-in campaign to make general election voting interesting. I don’t expect this to happen, because it would take a candidate who could fire up the voters to make it happen and such a candidate has been sadly lacking in this special election season.

Both of these campaigns certainly underwhelmed voters. Despite estimates that both Lazarus and Allen went over the $100,000 threshold for campaign spending, less than 7 percent of the voters countywide bothered to cast ballots – actually 6.45%.

Horry Chair Special Election Runoff Hijinks

Republican challengers Mark Lazarus and Al Allen will square off Tuesday March 26th in a special election runoff for the party nomination for Horry County Council chairman.

The election will effectively decide the next council chairman as there is no Democratic candidate and a write-in campaign that could defeat the Republican nominee is not in the cards.

Lazarus led the first round voting with 41 percent of the vote to Allen’s 24.5 percent, which just squeaked out second place over first time candidate Debbie Harwell who finished with 24 percent

Paying for Special Election Campaign Pledges

The two candidates in a special election primary runoff for the Republican nomination for Horry County Council chairman spoke of the need to continue to address the same issues that brought them this far.

With those pronouncements in mind, Mark Lazarus and Al Allen, the two surviving candidates, owe some explanations to the voters how they will pursue their earlier pronouncements without raising taxes.

Both were very vocal about re-instituting county paid health insurance for retired county employees. County council voted to phase this coverage out as a benefit too costly to continue.

Threats, Intimidation and Censorship

Every so often, especially in Horry County, threats and intimidation are used in attempts at censorship of the press.

You be the judge if the following qualifies.

For those of you wondering what happened to the story about Mark Lazarus and the Good Ole Boys the following e-mail string between Wrenzie Rice and myself should be self explanatory.

Paul Gable

Special Election Primary – Who Cares?

We are at the weekend before the special election primary for Horry County Council chairman and there is very little buzz “on the street” about the race.

Is it that voters are electioned out or that the five candidates have failed to generate any real excitement about themselves?

I suspect both of the above are part of the problem.

Two things I am hearing on the street from average citizens are no matter who becomes the next chairman, there is little support for giving government money to private businesses in the name of economic development and there is little support for building I-73.

Little Difference in Special Election Candidates

If I learned anything from Tuesday night’s televised forum of candidates in the special election for the vacant Horry County Council chairman seat, it’s that very little separates these candidates on issues.

Mark Lazarus, Liz Gilland, Al Allen, Debbie Harwell and Fonzie Lewis are not going to raise taxes except in cases of extreme emergency. Yet, all are going to push hard for I-73, the Southern Evacuation Lifeline and other major road projects in the county.

More major road projects with no tax increases.

Things like hospitality fees, road maintenance fees and local option sales taxes, all of which have been added or increased through the years, don’t count as taxes in this thought process.