Horry County ordinance attempts to balance gun rights, stray bullets

CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – Nearly 100 people showed up to Horry County’s public workshop for a proposed gun ordinance on Wednesday night.

Right now, there are no restrictions in place that limit where residents can and cannot fire their weapons. Several community members have complained that the shooting is becoming a danger to residents as more homes are developed, and what was once vacant land, fills with families.

The proposed ordinance aims to regulate where people can shoot firearms in the county.

Horry County Council has come up with a few different versions of the ordinance, but the latest proposal says no one can shoot a firearm within or into a residential area. You can read more about the ordinance presented here.

“We understand that people have a right to have firearms and to discharge them properly and safely,” said Barbara Eisenhardt, who hears gunshots near her home in Wild Wing Plantation. “But I think it’s not fair to the people who do not want to be subjected to stray bullets.”

Andrew Wiseman said he’s passionate about shooting and just bought a new home on an acreage so he could shoot in his backyard. Wiseman also said he’s not sure how this ordinance could be enforced.

“The way I see it, if the shooting is being done safely and the shooting area has been properly checked and inspected by officials, there should be no room for this shooting range to be stripped away,” Wiseman presented to council.

Timothy Irving said he doesn’t want responsible shooters in the county to be punished by this ordinance.

“What we have to do is, when we do pass ordinances and laws, that we do it in a smart way and in a way that’s not going to affect the good citizens,” Irving explains.

County officials did not make a decision regarding the ordinance Wednesday night, but Chairman Mark Lazarus said he appreciates everyone who came to the workshop.

“Something has to be done,” states Lazarus. “Even the ones who are against the ordinance were like, ‘We really need to do something,’ so we’re going to work towards it and hopefully come up with an ordinance that works for everybody.”

Lazarus said the council will continue discussions and bring an updated ordinance to the Public Safety Committee. They will also hear from Horry County Police Chief Joseph Hill on how this can be enforced.