Horry County Council moving forward after recent tension

Horry County Council moving forward after recent tension

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Tension between Horry County Council members seems to have cooled down since last week’s heated special meeting, which resulted in no action taken against county administrator Chris Eldridge.

After speaking with several county council members, including Horry County Chairman Johnny Gardner, what happened last Friday is behind them.

Gardner and the council realized the only way to move forward is by working together and putting differences aside.

“I think everybody was ready to roll and I think that showed tonight,” said Gardner.

After a week of uncertainty and confusion as to how this council can work together, council members Johnny Vaught and Al Allen said it’s all about learning and adjusting to change.

“We’re veterans and we will put it all together and we’ll make it work,” said Vaught.

“We need a lot more communication between council members, the chairperson and a lot more transparency with the public,” said Allen.

Several residents did voice their displeasure with the behavior of council, one man comparing the recent actions to children.

“I’m going to make some people mad tonight and I brought some pacifiers, if you need them I have more in my pocket,” said Drexel Drew.

Compared to last week’s meeting, no major disputes were made between council members on Thursday night.

However, Councilman Dennis Disabato voiced displeasure with Gardner’s committee assignments, specifically naming Danny Hardee head of public safety over him.

“Not only did you offer the position to me, but you reiterated that on multiple occasions,” said Disabato.

He went on to call Gardner’s choice, “the go along to get along politics” and was concerned that this is a sign of things to come.

Gardner did not react to Disabato’s comments but said it was a difficult choice putting the committees together, but stands by his final decision.

“I may have made a mistake, time will tell,” said Gardner.

As council adjourned, he assured that council is on the same page and will continue learning and working together.

“The seats belong to the people, this business belongs to the people, we’re just the people trying to manage it and move it forward and do the best for the people,” said Gardner.

Council will meet next on Tuesday, January 22 at 6 p.m. for their next county council meeting.

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