SURFSIDE BEACH, SC (WBTW) -Tuesday night’s Surfside Beach Town Council meeting lasted three and a half hours. While the lengthy meetings are not uncommon, three resignations at the end of the meeting seemed to come as a surprise.
During the final public comment period, Sandra Elliott, Betty Lowrey and Harry Kohlmann all publicly resigned from their respective committees.
“To stay or not has been wrestling in my mind for the last six to 12 months,” said Elliott to town council. Elliott served on the Planning Commission. “Council has lost faith in the Planning Commission and I too have lost faith in you.”
This came after a tree ordinance, which the commission had worked on for months, was amended by council and a separate council committee was created to look over the ordinance.
“I am so mad and I don’t get mad,” said Lowery, who was also on the Planning Commission. “I didn’t know whether to laugh, scream or cry. I don’t know if you guys even read what we gave you.”
A parking ordinance was also discussed at the meeting. Kohlmann, who was the Parking Committee chair, also announced his resignation.
“It’s a disgrace what you’re doing here,” he said. “This is the most dysfunctional council I’ve seen since I’ve been here for 10 years. We thought it was a circus years ago. You guys make it pale in comparison.”
All three said they put in years of work on the committees and felt council didn’t listen to their suggestions.
After the announcements, some council members responded at the end of the meeting by thanking the group for their positive and negative comments and thanked those who resigned for their service to the town.