MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Myrtle Beach City Council candidate Gregg Smith moved to Myrtle Beach with his family when he was 8 years old.
He's an Eagle Scout and a graduate of Myrtle Beach High School. In 1998, he received a degree from the University of South Carolina in 1998.
Smith is also on the board for the Grand Strand Miracle Leagues and is involved in Habitat for Humanity of Horry County, Wellspring Church and Substitutes for Santa.
He serves as a realtor with with Century 21 Broadhurst.
Smith on redevelopment:
Smith said he wants to focus not just on downtown Myrtle Beach redevelopment, but also neglected properties on the south side. Specifically, he said lodging on the south end is a tough business he wants to improve.
He added he is in favor of the plans for a library in the Superblock.
"Downtown Myrtle Beach has been struggling for years and they need a huge catalyst to help improve the area, and I think the library and children's museum would be a great start to that," Smith said. "I'm not in favor of eminent domain and I hope the city can come to an agreement with the property owners down there because a library and a children's museum can start the redevelopment of that area and improve life for everyone."
Additionally, Smith's other stances are: protecting beaches and the ocean; protecting tax dollars and eliminating waste; revitalizing the downtown and the south end; and supporting a library in the Superblock.
Smith on public safety:
Smith wants to increase Myrtle Beach's police force and community policing, specifically with younger people. He said he wants relationships to be cultivated between police and young adults for a positive relationship.
He wants to provide better outreach to addicts to improve safety and thinks the city's drug and crime problems are linked.
"A few weeks ago, Chief Prock came out with a plan to add more officers to Myrtle Beach. I think everyone running for council can agree we need more officers," Smith said. "That's a great idea to stop crime, halt crime efforts after it's already committed, but a lot of this crime is coming from heroin and drug use. But locking up drug addicts is not the answer. We need to find treatment and beds for these people for rehabilitation," Smith said.
Smith on why he should be elected:
"I've been in Myrtle Beach for 30 years, and I've been working to make it a better place the entire time. I'm an Eagle Scout with Troop 850. Yesterday was my 20-year anniversary of becoming an Eagle Scout at St. Phillips Lutheran Church. Currently, I'm on the board of directors for the Grand Strand Miracle League. We're at their field right now, and I'm also on the board of directors for Habitat for Humanity. I'm not running because one single thing made me mad. I'm running because I love Myrtle Beach, and I've been working to make Myrtle Beach a better place for all of my life," Smith said.
For Smith's full answers to the questions, watch the clips above.
This is the sixth of WMBF News' profiles of Myrtle Beach City Council candidates. The series began Oct. 16, and will run nine days, with the last candidate being profiled Oct. 26. WMBF News will interview each of the nine candidates in alphabetical order, and will ask the same three questions to each. Those questions are about re-development, public safety and why he or she should be chosen for city council.
Here are the air dates for each candidate:
- Oct. 16: Ann Dunham
- Oct. 17: Matthew Hardee
- Oct. 18 Mike Hobeika
- Oct. 19 Mike Lowder (incumbent)
- Oct. 20 Brooks Myers
- Oct. 23 Gregg Smith
- Oct 24 Kevin VanWinkle
- Oct 25 Jackie Vereen
- Oct 26 Randall Wallace (incumbent)