Jan 28 Section A1-10.indd

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Jan 28 Section A1-10.indd
COASTAL OBSERVER
Vol. XXXIV No. 32
Pawleys Island, South Carolina ~ January 28, 2016
50 cents
Council changes direction to cut highway setback
BY JASON LESLEY
COASTAL OBSERVER
Georgetown County Council
reversed a decision its members
made during a committee meeting and passed the first of three
readings necessary to reduce the
setback on Highway 17 and part
of Highway 701 from 90 to 50
feet this week.
Meeting as the Administrative and Finance Committee last
week, council members voted
to include the setback question
into a corridor study planned by
the Grand Strand Area Transportation Study for the Waccamaw Neck.
Council Chairman Johnny
Morant suggested consolidating the setback issue with the
GSATS corridor study during
the committee meeting, and a
majority agreed that more information would be welcome. The
remainder of the county affected by the 90-foot setback rule
could be considered separately,
Council Member Austin Beard
said.
With Morant absent from this
week’s meeting, Beard moved to
reconsider the action taken during the committee meeting, and
Council Member Steve Goggans,
who proposed reducing the setback to 50 feet, seconded.
Goggans had opposed delaying the setback decision by
including it in the GSATS study.
“I thought we’d be hearing a few
facts but didn’t have the opportunity,” Goggans said at this
week’s council meeting. Including the setback with the GSATS
corridor study would only complicate matters, he said. “What’s
controversial today will be
SEE “HIGHWAY 17,” PAGE 4
PAWLEYS ISLAND
ROADS | Petigru Drive
Town moves
to Plan B
for repairing
sand dunes
Litchfield C.C.
Paving will open
a new option
for local traffic
OP
EN
LO
AS P
River Club
Stables
Park
BY CHARLES SWENSON
BY JASON LESLEY
COASTAL OBSERVER
COASTAL OBSERVER
RD.
ILLE
HW
AY
1
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RSV
High
school
HIG
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Elementary
school
PETIG
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RD
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.
.
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Residents of Litchfield Country Club told
Georgetown County officials they were concerned
that paving Petigru Road will bring more traffic to
their neighborhood during a public information
session for the upgraded intersection at Petigru
and Martin Luther King roads Wednesday evening
at the Waccamaw Regional Recreation Center.
The proposal combines a state Department of
Transportation project to add turn lanes at Martin
Luther King and Petigru and pave a .2-mile portion of Petigru with a county project to pave the
remaining half-mile dirt road to Aspen Loop at Litchfield Country Club.
Right-of-way acquisition to widen the roads
is expected to take about 11 months, and bids are
scheduled to be let next January. Completion of
the project is expected in the fall of 2017, according to Ray Funnye, the county director of Public
Services.
Tilley Bull of the engineering firm of Davis and
Floyd said the state portion of Petigru will have
12-foot traffic lanes with 4-foot shoulders. The
county’s portion will have 11-foot travel lanes with
4-foot shoulders. Two large oaks in the state’s portion of Petigru will be preserved with a raised median that splits the north and southbound lanes.
Ed Quillian of Litchfield Country Club said residents are worried that the paving of Petigru will
.
M.L. KING RD.
Rec
center
Charles Swenson/Coastal Observer, Georgetown County GIS
invite more traffic from Kings River Road. “Our
concern is a tremendous amount of traffic coming
through our neighborhood,” he said. “The 25 mile
per hour speed limit is not being enforced.”
Quillian asked if a traffic study had been done
to estimate the impact on the country club.
County Administrator Sel Hemingway said
a traffic study, while expensive, wouldn’t reveal
SEE “PETIGRU,” PAGE 4
Petigru Drive
parallels Highway 17. The
section in
yellow will be
paved.
ZONING | The poultry ordinance
New rule provides a chicken in every lot
BY JASON LESLEY
COASTAL OBSERVER
Supporters
of
backyard
chickens argued for and against
a county poultry ordinance before it was adopted by Georgetown County Council this week.
Council members agreed
to add a chicken, allowing four
hens on 10,000-square foot residential lots, and letting owners
have a coop within 50 feet of an
adjoining property line rather
than 100 feet before approving
third and final reading of the ordinance. It allows a maximum of
16 chickens on larger lots but no
roosters.
Ken Moran Calhoun said the
ordinance was “bureaucratic
overreach” by the county, and
restricting homeowners in residential neighborhoods to hens
only is “a defacto chicken ban”
because roosters are necessary
to produce biddies and replace
the flock.
“This is a grab for authority
on an issue that does not exist,”
he said. “I don’t want anyone at
the Planning Commission making decisions about my property. I want people to make decisions.”
Calhoun said limiting the
number of chickens is prejudicial to the economically disadvantaged. “I thought the day of
Jim Crowe was passed,” he said.
“They can’t have chickens because they can’t afford a 10-acre
spread.”
Amber Bradshaw, who has
chickens in her yard off the
South Causeway, said she’s not
violating any laws until this ordinance goes into effect. “The
law restricts the majority of us,”
she said. “By limiting chickens
you help the wealthy who have
over an acre of land.” She said
it takes a flock of 18 to 20 chickens to supply a family of six with
eggs. “You are leaving out the
minority,” she said. “We can’t
afford to sell our home and buy
acres of land.”
Shannon Davis of Hagley
said she felt bullied and threatened by zoning officials when
her neighbor complained about
her chickens. She opposed the
ordinance. “There’s no reason
to regulate chickens,” she said.
“They are not livestock. They
are pets.”
Flo Phillips of the Pawleys
SEE “POULTRY,” PAGE 4
POLITICS | GOP presidential primary
Republican officials aren’t concerned about ‘Trump effect’
The town of Pawleys Island
has applied for a state permit to
extend its project to scrape sand
from the beach to rebuild its
dunes. The town has an emergency permit from the state
Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management to push up
sand in front of 58 houses on
the island’s south end and at
Pawleys Pier Village. It wants
to extend the work through the
middle of the island and on the
north end.
The town is still waiting for
approval from the Army Corps
of Engineers for the emergency
permit to repair damage caused
by storms nearly four months
ago. “This is for the expedited
emergency permit,” Mayor Bill
Otis said. Despite the delay, “I
think we’re making progress,”
he said.
Town Council could meet as
soon as next week to approve a
contractor for the emergency
scraping. The town sent requests for proposals to three
firms this week and wants to be
ready to start pushing up sand
as soon as it has the corps permit. The town also needs approval from each property owner. “We’re short about 15 of those
letters and we can’t start until
we get them,” Otis said.
The 58 lots covered by the
emergency permit at among 81
lots on the island’s narrow south
end. Not all were approved for
dune repair under the emergency permit. That means the repairs will leave gaps in the dune
that could make it vulnerable to
winter storms.
Otis hopes that the new permit request will be approved
in time to allow work at all the
south end lots before the end
of March. After that, work must
halt for sea turtle nesting season.
“If we aren’t able to get that
in time, we would fall back on
SEE “PAWLEYS,” PAGE 3
INSIDE THIS ISSUE
BY CHARLES SWENSON
COASTAL OBSERVER
A month before the state’s
presidential primary, local Republican leaders see the nomination of Donald Trump as inevitable. Unlike other members of
the GOP establishment, they say
they aren’t worried about the effect that will have on the party.
“People want somebody
who’s strong and who will do
something,” said Randy Hollister, the Georgetown County GOP
chairman. “The frustration is so
great they don’t want somebody
who just believes in something.
Go do something.”
A poll released last week
by CBS News/YouGov showed
Trump with 40 percent of the
vote. Second was Sen. Ted Cruz
of Texas with 21 percent.
While Hollister and other
officials are cautious about the
polls, the numbers match his
own informal metric. “I haven’t
had a single call about signs and
stickers, except for Trump,” he
said. “I get them all the time.”
Hollister isn’t supporting
any of the candidates. He wants
to maintain a level playing field
in order to get the candidates to
The art of the bowl: Two
artists had a hand and a
brush in this year’s Habitat
for Humanity Souper Bowl.
SECOND FRONT
Tanya Ackerman/Coastal Observer
Republicans are seeing a mix of new faces along with party regulars at events such as this rally
for Carly Fiorina in Litchfield last month.
campaign in Georgetown County. Jerry Rovner, who chairs the
GOP in the 7th Congressional
District as well as the Waccamaw Neck Republican Club, is
also staying uncommitted. But
he doesn’t think that will help
get Trump to the county. “We
couldn’t have Trump here because we don’t have a building
big enough,” Rovner said.
He has seen more people
coming out to GOP events this
year than in the past. But no one
draws the crowds like Trump
and Cruz, he said. He saw that
earlier this month at the S.C.
Tea Party Convention in Myrtle Beach. Not only were there
standing-room-only crowds for
the top two candidates, there
was a huge continent of media.
After they left, “there was still a
good crowd, but it wasn’t as intense,” Rovner said.
“This is the first time in many
years the conservative aspect
has been out there fighting,”
said Judy Clarke, who is president of the Georgetown County
Federal of Republican Women.
While she acknowledges she is
part of the GOP leadership, she
disputes the label “establish-
ment.” “I’m very conservative,”
she said.
That may be why she has
heard more people raise questions about Trump. “We have
a lot of people who voice their
concern,” Clarke said. “They
question his demeanor.”
But Rovner said he has heard
from people who find that aspect of Trump refreshing. “People my age can’t spell PC,” he
said. “It’s not even political.”
There is a sense that people
are simply afraid to talk, not to
mention afraid to speak their
SEE “GOP,” PAGE 3
Education: A career nurse
now answers to “doctor” after earning another degree.
PAGE 9
Crime................................. 7
Opinion ............................. 8
Crossword ........................12
What’s On .........................13
Classifieds ........................15
Sports ...............................18
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