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Latest News in Seabrook Island, SC

Seabrook Island neighbors push for short-term rental cap, mayor says no cap needed

SEABROOK ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - Seabrook Island neighbors are petitioning their leaders to cap the number of short-term rentals, stating there is overcrowding due to what they called over-tourism, but the mayor said the town has no plans to do so.Seabrook Island homeowner Ted Flerlage says over 700 of his neighbors want to cap the number of short-term rentals on the island.“What we’re trying to do is cap, not end the process of short-term rentals, cap at roughly the present numbers, evaluate what happens after that,&...

SEABROOK ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - Seabrook Island neighbors are petitioning their leaders to cap the number of short-term rentals, stating there is overcrowding due to what they called over-tourism, but the mayor said the town has no plans to do so.

Seabrook Island homeowner Ted Flerlage says over 700 of his neighbors want to cap the number of short-term rentals on the island.

“What we’re trying to do is cap, not end the process of short-term rentals, cap at roughly the present numbers, evaluate what happens after that,” Flerlage said, “and then, determine whether or not we should lower the number of short-term rentals.”

As of June 19, there are 484 of these properties on the island, which residents said has led to overcrowding on the island’s streets and amenities.

Mayor John Gregg said for this year, data gathered over the past few months suggest otherwise.

“We’re not going to be looking at imposing limitations on the number of short-term rental units,” Gregg said.

Coastal Getaways owner Nancy Buck said more people are starting to call the island home, and good rentals are full for around 40% of the year.

She says all of her clients are property owners who rent to help offset the costs of the amenities, taxes and insurance.

“We’ve also gone from 35% permanent residents to 60% residents in the last two years,” Buck said. “Twenty-five percent of the properties have turned over since 2019.”

Buck also adds the majority of the amenities are mostly used by members and not rental guests.

However, the homeowners want the town’s government to hear them out.

“I’d like him to reconsider,” Flerlage said. “I’d like him to look at the reality and listen to the people who are property owners here, the residents on the island. You know, 700 people is a big number.”

“Let’s wait and see how this year goes,” Buck said. “They instituted the short-term rental ordinance couple of years ago, or actually, last year, so let’s give it a full year to see how it goes.”

Both Buck and the homeowners said they want to work out their differences over the next several months to come up with a solution that works for everyone.

Copyright 2022 WCSC. All rights reserved.

Some Seabrook Island residents call for cap on short-term rentals

SEABROOK ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - An ongoing battle over short-term rentals is brewing on Seabrook Island, where homeowners say uncontrolled growth of properties is affecting their quality of life.Homeowners Ted Flerlage and Paul McLaughlin said although they do not want to end short-term rentals on the island, the effects of recent growth have prompted them to call for a cap on short-term rentals.“If you come here in July, around July Fourth, as a resident walking out boardwalk one, let’s say, to north beach, there&rs...

SEABROOK ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - An ongoing battle over short-term rentals is brewing on Seabrook Island, where homeowners say uncontrolled growth of properties is affecting their quality of life.

Homeowners Ted Flerlage and Paul McLaughlin said although they do not want to end short-term rentals on the island, the effects of recent growth have prompted them to call for a cap on short-term rentals.

“If you come here in July, around July Fourth, as a resident walking out boardwalk one, let’s say, to north beach, there’s no space, and that is a rental issue,” Flerlage, who has lived on the island since March 2020, said. “That is a noise issue. It is a parking issue because every spot on the limited parking area is taken.”

The two homeowners have spearheaded the Preserve Seabrook effort. A letter sent to residents as part of the effort says concerns “center on the uncontrolled growth of short-term rentals, especially on streets where there are many full-time and private residential properties.”

“We aim to retain a reasonable offering of properties that can be rented by guests who love to visit and vacation on our beautiful island, while ensuring Seabrook does not gradually morph into a resort community,” the letter states. “We believe adding a cap on the number of resort properties on Seabrook would protect the unique qualities of our island while allowing revenue generated through rental properties to continue to flow back to the town through state and county accommodation taxes that the renters pay.”

Over 300 residents have signed a petition to cap the number of short-term rentals on the island, according to McLaughlin.

The petition seeks a single question on the Nov. 2, 2021 ballot that asks if voters support:

“Seabrook, when I bought here in 2002 and built our house here in 2009, it was more like ‘Cheers,’” McLaughlin said. “Everybody knew your name. Now, with the influx of 500 rental properties and growing, it’s changed a lot, and the quality of life on the island has changed a lot.”

Seabrook Island Mayor John Gregg said a petition from those calling for a cap has been sent to a committee, which will conduct a factual inquiry and then report to town council with recommendations.

“The object for the ad hoc committee was to identify inquiries of factual matters that could inform council as it considers whether or not it is warranted to do further regulation,” Gregg said.

The mayor added that to operate a short-term rental on the island, homeowners need to have a business license and a permit from the town.

McLaughlin and Flerlage said they welcome the data-driven effort but want more communication from the town and to work with them on a solution.

“Our question to them: What is the tipping point? If 500 isn’t the tipping point, is it 600? Is it 700? Is it 800? So, in the meantime, we need to figure it out,” McLaughlin said. “We need to halt what’s going on. Everybody keeps what they currently have, and we study the problem, and we figure out what the solution would be. We don’t make the problem worse while continuing to study it.”

“These are people who live in South Carolina and vote in South Carolina who live on the island and vote on the island,” Flerlage said. “These are the people who are their direct constituents – the people who vote for the mayor and the town council. It’s more than 300 of those people who signed up, which is nearly as many as who voted for them in the last election on Nov. 2, and in our opinion, there has been no communication and we’ve been getting fairly short-tripped on the issue.”

Copyright 2021 WCSC. All rights reserved.

10 South Carolina Beaches You Should Visit This Summer

Breathtaking beaches may be found all along the beautiful South Carolina coast. Tourists shall try one of the secret beaches on seldom frequented barrier islands if they want to escape away to their own quiet stretch of heaven. These sandy sanctuaries may be found all along the state's coastline, from SC's southernmost point to North Myrtle Beach, and offer a peaceful location to wander down the beach, look for shells, or...

Breathtaking beaches may be found all along the beautiful South Carolina coast. Tourists shall try one of the secret beaches on seldom frequented barrier islands if they want to escape away to their own quiet stretch of heaven. These sandy sanctuaries may be found all along the state's coastline, from SC's southernmost point to North Myrtle Beach, and offer a peaceful location to wander down the beach, look for shells, or simply soak up the sun. Only accessible by boat, most of the mesmerizing islands have remained undeveloped, preserving the beach in its natural state. Here are the best 10 underrated South Carolina beaches.

Charleston's Barrier Islands

Charleston has evolved to become one of the most popular tourist destinations in the United States, garnering several honors from travel journals. The interesting history, enchanting charm, and tasty gastronomy are all appealing, but tourists can also extend their vacation by a few days to visit some of the greatest beaches in the South. Only 45 minutes to an hour from downtown, the splendid peninsula of Charleston is encircled by barrier islands. There are several beautiful beaches to visit in the area!

Bulls Island

Bulls Island is the biggest of four barrier islands in the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge, and it stands along with one of the most pristine stretches of shoreline on the east coast. The famous and unique Boneyard Beach, where the remnants of surf-battered trees are sprawled over the sand, is one of its seven miles of beaches. A ferry to the island is available for tourists, as well as a variety of guided excursions such as a Bulls Island sunrise tour, beach drop, kayak trip, and multiday adventure.

Capers Island

Travelers shall visit this state history preserve, located 15 miles (24km) north of Charleston at the southwestern edge of the Cape Romain National Wildlife Refuge, on a picturesque kayak or boat tour. Along with a beautiful beach, they will be able to see a variety of dazzling birds, including endangered brown pelicans and ruddy turnstones. On the island, 294 different kinds of migrating birds have been sighted. Capers Island, like Bulls Island, features a "Boneyard Beach" formed by years of erosion.

Daufuskie Island

The splendid Daufuskie Island, located directly over Calibogue Sound from Hilton Head Island, will make its visitors feel a million miles away from society. It's not uncommon to observe no one when walking along the bewitching white sand beaches. To get to Daufuskie, travelers have to take a boat or water taxi from Hilton Head to Freeport Marina's public pier, then hire a golf cart and drive all the way across the island to the beach. They should not miss out on seeing the astonishing remainder of this remote South Carolina sea island and its numerous wonderful historical monuments while they're there.

Morris Island

This amazing 840-acre deserted island is located at the mouth of Charleston Harbor, across Lighthouse Inlet from Folly Beach, and is known for its historic 19th-century lighthouse. The incredible 150-foot brick structure now remains in the ocean just offshore after years of degradation. The stunning beach, on the other hand, is as lovely as ever, and it's an awesome place to hunt for seashells, especially sand dollars. Morris Island may be visited on a boat or kayak excursion organized by local outfitters.

Folly Beach

Folly Beach, South Carolina, is renowned as the "Edge of America" and is one of Charleston's most beautiful, well-known, and famous beaches. The Washout is a notable surfing area on the island's awesome eastern edge. If tourists continue walking until they reach a cul-de-sac, they may stroll to an abandoned road with hurricane-damaged foundations covered in colorful graffiti. A rookery of pelicans may also be seen where the Atlantic Ocean meets the clear water of Folly River.

Seabrook Island

The magnificent Seabrook Island has been home to soldiers, pirates, and well-to-do Charleston families over the years. The Seabrook Island Club is now a private community with beach access and vacation rentals. The splendid beaches are exclusively available to members and visitors due to the island's setup. The bewitching untouched sand is unlike any other beach in South Carolina. Aside from the beaches, Seabrook Island's tourists may ride their bikes throughout the land. Marsh rabbits, sea turtles, whitetail deer, and alligators are just a few of the fauna worth seeing.

Isle of Palms

The unique Isle of Palms is a high-end destination. Although the beautiful beach is still available to the public, there are several places that are only accessible if visitors stay at a resort or rent a unit. Beach access is available at Isle of Palms County Park, along with expert seasonal lifeguards and a dedicated swimming area for children. An exciting playground and marvelous picnic areas are also available.

The Grand Strand

The astonishing "Grand Strand," which runs between the Little River and Georgetown on the northern coast of South Carolina, is the state's greatest stretch of beautiful beach. The Waccamaw tribe used to live here until Europeans arrived after the American Revolution. Every year, millions of people visit this area, particularly the impressive Myrtle Beach. Unlike several other regions of the state, the Grand Strand has public access to all of its marvelous beaches. Family-friendly attractions are well-known in the area.

Pawleys Island

The tranquil and magical area of Pawleys Island, one of the region's oldest resort areas, is the first stop on the tourist's route north on King's Highway. There are a few fancy golf clubs and resorts on the "mainland" side of town, but visitors cannot access the beach from there. However, if they cross a beautiful little inlet, they will be on the wonderful island itself. They can also visit Otis Beach, which is a popular public beach.

South Carolina's Best Beaches, Ranked By Popularity

South Carolina is a stunning place to visit not just for its rich history and mesmerizing landscapes but also for its magnificent beaches. The state's coastline, which stretches for 187 miles along the Atlantic, is home to some of the most splendid and p...

South Carolina is a stunning place to visit not just for its rich history and mesmerizing landscapes but also for its magnificent beaches. The state's coastline, which stretches for 187 miles along the Atlantic, is home to some of the most splendid and pristine beaches in the United States. The Grand Strand includes some of the most dazzling and popular beaches for summer tourists. In addition to all this clear blue wealth, South Carolina also possesses enchanting islands. Here are the 10 most popular beaches in the state.

Kiawah Island

Kiawah Island is characterized by its 10 miles (16 kilometers) of wonderful beaches harmonized by splendid lush marshes, breathtaking white sand, and exceptional maritime forestry. Tourists will enjoy the beautiful water beaches of South Carolina by visiting Kiawah Island, which offers them exciting aquatic activities such as kayaks and SUP rentals. They can also play golf at the resort and satisfy their food cravings at the Bohicket Marina Market.

Coligny Beach Park, Hilton Head Island

The enchanting sea breeze in Coligny Beach will carry all tourists' worries and allow them to explore one of the most popular and astonishing beaches in South Carolina. Visitors can spend time in the spectacular public garden equipped with amazing amenities. It is important to note that the location is the safest beach for children due to the presence of active lifeguards. Around Coligny Plaza, visitors can enjoy tasty food and buy beach accessories and clothing as well as unique souvenirs.

Seabrook Island

Tourists will explore the quiet beaches and spectacular wetlands of Seabrook Island, known for its marvelous and greatest swimming beach in South Carolina. Incredible coastline and beautiful trail rides, a health center with aquatics and fitness, mesmerizing beachfront pools, and a hypnotic deep-water marina are all available on the lovely island. Vacationers do not want to miss the most wonderful sunset seen from Pelican Beach. Moreover, friends and families can gather around mouth-drooling food in award-winning eateries.

Myrtle Beach

In terms of the number of visitors, Myrtle Beach is, without a doubt, the most popular aquatic destination in South Carolina. People from all over the world and the country are attracted by this dazzling beach due to its amazing tourist attractions, various exciting entertainment activities, fancy beachfront resorts, and family-friendliness. Moreover, the emerald blue beach's superb white sand keeps tourists coming back. Those looking for a calmer destination should head toward the North Myrtle Beach coast.

Folly Beach, Charleston

Folly Beach is another beautiful sun location that is easily accessible from Charleston. It has a great fishing pier (fishers shall bring their rod), serving as the ideal scenery for a romantic selfie. The beach is also popular for thrilling outdoor activities such as paddle boarding, surfing, sea kayaking, and dolphin spotting excursions. It's also a wonderful beach to simply wander along while admiring the sights of the splendid ocean.

Front Beach, Isle of Palms

A nice 40-minute journey east of Charleston will take tourists to the Isle of Palms, a lovely coastal spot popular with both locals and visitors of the area. The majority of visitors flock to Front Beach, which is known for its ample public parking and quick beach access. Aside from kayaking, surfing, fishing, paddle boarding, and other aquatic activities, the beach serves as a vital stopover for sea turtles. Therefore, visitors shall watch the warning signs because turtles nest and lay their eggs in the dunes.

Pawleys Island

Travelers looking for the finest place with magnificent sculptures, splendid local plant gardens, and astonishing zoos should visit Pawleys Island's white powdery sand beach. This beach has the most pristine shoreline and is well-known for its calm waves, which are ideal for bicycling, shelling, kayaking, and canoeing with family, friends, and loved ones. Pawleys Island offers a gorgeous view of the area's famed waterway, so tourists shall not miss it!

Huntington Beach State Park — Murrells Inlet

The impressive Huntington Beach State Park is one of South Carolina's most well-known sites. With over 2500 acres of outstanding open area to explore, tourists will enjoy the delightful sea-breeze camping with magical sea waves, charming exotic birds, and bewitching sunsets on the East Coast. Art and environment enthusiasts may see endangered creatures such as loggerhead turtles and flora, as well as visit the neighboring Atalaya Arts and Crafts.

Litchfield Beach

The distinctive Litchfield Beach is another excellent option south of Myrtle Beach. The beach is known to be a quiet destination and is full of charming cottages and a nice 1.5-mile stretch to enjoy. Aside from excellent sunbathing and swimming, people looking for water sports can choose various activities from Jet Skis to sea kayaking, as well as fishing. While parking is limited and it is recommended to arrive early, the fact that only two beach access points are available almost assures a peaceful experience.

Family Beach, Surfside

On Family beach, tourists can stroll with their families down the famed 1.2-mile boardwalk that runs along the magnificent coastline of Surfside Beach and immerse themselves in the awesome landscape while dining, shopping, and participating in exciting festivals. The town provides a variety of coastal activities for people of all ages, including music performances and a water park, as well as excellent dining and shopping. Surfboard rentals and lessons are also available for thrill-seekers. Next:

MUSC Foundation receives $1M from Town of Kiawah Island in support of Sea Islands Medical Pavilion

CHARLESTON, S.C. (Jan. 13, 2022) –The Medical University of South Carolina Foundation has received a commitment of $1 million from the Town of Kiawah Island in support of MUSC Health’s Sea Islands Medical Pavilion.“We are grateful to the Town of Kiawah for its major investment in our mission and their ongoing partnership to help us enable the right care, in the right place and at the right time,” said David J. Cole, M.D., FACS, MUSC president. “This donation will make a significant differ...

CHARLESTON, S.C. (Jan. 13, 2022) –The Medical University of South Carolina Foundation has received a commitment of $1 million from the Town of Kiawah Island in support of MUSC Health’s Sea Islands Medical Pavilion.

“We are grateful to the Town of Kiawah for its major investment in our mission and their ongoing partnership to help us enable the right care, in the right place and at the right time,” said David J. Cole, M.D., FACS, MUSC president. “This donation will make a significant difference as we seek to improve the well-being of the Sea Islands community, expand access to appropriate care, and bolster connectivity to the state’s only comprehensive academic health system when patients require the most complex care.”

The donation has been designated for a healing, restful green space and garden immediately adjacent to the new facility. Construction on the Sea Islands project is expected to begin in early 2022 and conclude in fall 2023.

“The Town is proud to invest in MUSC's Sea Islands Medical Pavilion and excited about the emergent care services it will provide to Kiawah, Seabrook, Johns and Wadmalaw Islands, and the broader community,” said Town of Kiawah Mayor John D. Labriola. “Our geography has always been a challenge and concern. This new facility will make a crucial difference in life-threatening emergencies and provide the Sea Island communities with greater ease of mind. We are grateful to MUSC for their pursuit of this project, to Kiawah Partners for donating the land, and to the other community partners who have made this possible.”

During the next five years, double digit population growth is anticipated in the Sea Islands community. This growth, along with the islands' geographic isolation, demographics, and community health profiles, has created an urgent need for additional health care services in this part of the South Carolina Lowcountry.

The area also accommodates a large seasonal population of tourists, many of whom have trouble navigating local health care services.

To meet this growing need, MUSC Health is building a new medical facility on Johns Island in the immediate vicinity of Kiawah and Seabrook islands. The facility will provide residents and visitors alike with convenient and rapid access to MUSC Health’s emergency care services, select outpatient services, and some of the nation’s top providers in primary and specialty care.

“People living in this area have to travel 30 or 45 minutes to reach the nearest hospital, sometimes more depending on traffic. That’s a big problem for someone having a stroke or cardiac event,” said Patrick J. Cawley, M.D., MUSC Health CEO and vice president for Health Affairs, University. “This new facility brings that care directly into the community. We’re extremely grateful to the Town of Kiawah and Kiawah Partners for helping to make that possible.”

The project was made possible in part by Kiawah Partners, which donated six acres of land to the Medical University Hospital Authority (MUSC Health), valued at $4.85 million. The project is estimated to cost $24 million. Of that amount, MUSC is working to raise $15 million in private support.

The 22,740-square-foot facility will be located at 1884 Seabrook Island Road, near Bohicket Marina. The ED will include four exam rooms, two trauma rooms, imaging and lab services and a helicopter pad. The medical office will offer primary and specialty care. A telemedicine network will connect the entire facility to MUSC Health providers in downtown Charleston for additional care and consultation, if needed.

In mid-June 2021, McMillan Pazdan Smith (MPS) was chosen to design the project. MPS is also one of two architectural firms working on designs for a new MUSC Health hospital in rural Williamsburg County.

Renderings of the Sea Islands medical pavilion are available upon request.

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About the MUSC Foundation

The Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Foundation was chartered in 1966 as a charitable educational foundation to support the education, research, patient care and other programs at the Medical University. The foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization, contributions to which are tax-deductible.

Since its beginning, the MUSC Foundation has encouraged such worthwhile academic enterprises as endowed professorships; scholarships; the acquisition and development of campus facilities to serve student, teaching, research or clinical needs; and awards in honor of academic excellence. In addition, it has encouraged achievements in biomedical research.

The Foundation is governed by a 31-member board of directors. The president of the Medical University is an ex-officio, non-voting member of the board. Three members of the MUSC Board of Trustees also serve on the board. The remaining 27 at-large directors are not directly affiliated with the university. Five are alumni of MUSC. The foundation’s funds are invested and managed by professional money managers selected by the foundation’s Investment Committee. This committee uses a professional investment advisor to assist in evaluating its managers.

About MUSC

Founded in 1824 in Charleston, MUSC is home to the oldest medical school in the South as well as the state’s only integrated academic health sciences center, with a unique charge to serve the state through education, research and patient care. Each year, MUSC educates and trains more than 3,000 students and nearly 800 residents in six colleges: Dental Medicine, Graduate Studies, Health Professions, Medicine, Nursing and Pharmacy. MUSC brought in more than $327.6 million in biomedical research funds in fiscal year 2021, continuing to lead the state in obtaining federal and National Institutes of Health funding, with more than $220 million. For information on academic programs, visit musc.edu.

As the clinical health system of the Medical University of South Carolina, MUSC Health is dedicated to delivering the highest-quality and safe patient care while training generations of compassionate, competent health care providers to serve the people of South Carolina and beyond. Patient care is provided at 14 hospitals with approximately 2,500 beds and five additional hospital locations in development, more than 300 telehealth sites and nearly 750 care locations situated in the Lowcountry, Midlands, Pee Dee and Upstate regions of South Carolina. In 2021, for the seventh consecutive year, U.S. News & World Report named MUSC Health the No. 1 hospital in South Carolina. To learn more about clinical patient services, visit muschealth.org.

MUSC and its affiliates have collective annual budgets of $4.4 billion. The nearly 24,000 MUSC team members include world-class faculty, physicians, specialty providers, scientists, and care team members who deliver groundbreaking education, research, technology and patient care.

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