Tag: Surfside Beach

Sun Sets on I-73 Funding

Nearly two years ago Horry County Council voted to remove the sunset provision on the countywide 1.5% hospitality tax that was passed 22 years ago to pay for Ride I projects, in order to provide a long term funding source for construction of Interstate 73 within the county.

Two days ago, the sun set on the I-73 project when Myrtle Beach city council called BS on the county’s right to extend the tax beyond paying off Ride I bonds by unanimously passing first reading of an ordinance to keep all the hospitality tax collected within its corporate limits for its own projects.

Yesterday, word began circulating around the county that North Myrtle Beach and Surfside Beach would soon mirror the Myrtle Beach initiative by voting to keep hospitality tax revenues collected within their respective jurisdictions for their own uses.

Ending the county’s ability to collect a 1.5% hospitality tax countywide will force county council to immediately terminate a financial participation agreement it signed with SCDOT on December 13, 2018, to provide funding for the I-73 project.

It appears county council was seriously misinformed about its ability to continue to collect a 1.5% hospitality tax ad infinitum when it voted to end the sunset provision of the original law. As a result, available county funding for important initiatives may suffer a serious setback because of the greed of a few proponents of the I-73 project and the rush in which they moved to extend county hospitality tax collections.

According to state law, hospitality tax revenue must be spent primarily within the local jurisdiction in which it is collected.

State law allows for local governments to impose up to a 2% hospitality tax with counties able to enact a 1% countywide hospitality tax. However, the county cannot collect more than 1% within the municipalities without permission by the municipality.

Section 6-1-720(A) of state code provides: “A local governing body may impose, by ordinance, a hospitality tax not to exceed two percent…The governing body of a county may not impose a local hospitality tax in excess of one percent within the boundaries of a municipality without the consent, by resolution, of the appropriate municipal governing body.”

Gingrich, Myrtle Beach, Oil and Interstates

Beach Tent Bans Drawing Criticism

The recent beach tent bans deliberated by three local governments in Horry County have drawn criticism from both locals and tourists as more big government intrusion on individual rights.

North Myrtle Beach passed final reading on an ordinance earlier this week banning tents in the peak summer season, May 15th – September 15th. In addition, beach umbrellas may provide shaded area of no more than 9 ft. diameter circle.

Myrtle Beach has passed first reading of an ordinance banning beach tents from Memorial Day to Labor Day while Horry County has passed first reading of an ordinance banning beach tents year around.

Surfside Beach Dog Park – No Barking Allowed!

Just when you think you’ve heard it all, some elected official does a little thinking and comes up with the brilliant idea of outlawing barking at the Surfside Beach Dog Park.

We know ‘elected official thinking’ is an oxymoron, but the proposal by Surfside Beach town council member Randle Stephens is, frankly, nuts.

He has submitted a resolution, which would outlaw the name “Barc Park”, at the town’s dog park, because it encourages barking by the dogs visiting it. Stephens also submitted an accompanying sign that reads “Please be courteous and respectful to your dog park neighbors. No dog barking and loud noise.”