Myrtle Beach Issues
Brenda’s Top Priorities
Make our community safe again
Create an environment to help businesses flourish
Restore and Revitalize our Downtown area
Listen to residents and business owners and come up with common sense solutions for the problems we face
Bring transparency and accountability to local government
PUBLIC SAFETY – NOT A ONE DIMENSIONAL ISSUE
The topic of our public safety is one I take very seriously. I suggest a multi faceted plan to address our needs in a proactive manner.
DEVELOP A STRATEGIC PLAN TO RECRUIT, RETAIN, AND ATTRACT NEW OFFICERS AS WELL AS RETAIN OUR CURRENT ONES
* Analyze our needs carefully and identify a rational number of officers needed
* Develop a long range plan based on population and tourism growth to address our future needs
* Implement a cost effective and competitive solution to hire and retain good employees
WE MUST DO WHATEVER IT TAKES TO FUND OUR POLICE PROPERLY
* Utilize a portion of the TDF to help fun our public safety needs
* Work to develop a Traveling Officers Program (modeled similarly to the traveling nurses program widely used in the United States). By implementing this program successfully we can solve our need of more officers during our high traffic season without adding the expense of adding full time employees.
INCREASE POLICE/SECURITY PRESENCE, LIGHTING, AND SURVEILLANCE IN HIGH TRAFFIC AND HIGH CRIME ZONES
* Place proper lighting in high traffic zones. Proper lighting can be both attractive and effective in deterring crime.
* Incorporate the use of more surveillance cameras on our boulevard in problem areas and downtown and prominently display signage notifying of their existence.
* Conduct an in-depth study of the use of Hospitality or Public Safety Officers that have been successful in other markets. The Responsible Hospitality Institute (RHI) works with the city of Charleston, SC and other major markets with much success. Not only will they help deter crime by being more eyes and ears on the street, but they will serve as hospitality liaisons as they interact with visitors, giving Myrtle Beach a more safe, welcoming and hospitable environment.
I commend our council for approving a police substation to be located on the boulevard. This will greatly increase our police presence in a high traffic zone. It will also serve as a beacon for our visitors. People will feel more safe by having this station visible and it will act as a haven where visitors can go if they are in distress or need assistance.
The continued success of Myrtle Beach hinges on our ability to attract new businesses as well as improve and maintain the ones we have. In order for our community to thrive we must have businesses that are thriving.
* Work to attract diverse businesses to locate in our International Technology and Aerospace Park (ITAP) in Market Common and in other commercial zones in the city. This will allow us to expand our job pool by offering higher paying jobs in specialized fields.
* Promote our own, highly acclaimed Horry Georgetown Technical College that’s ready to train workers in specialized areas needed for specific jobs. This scenario is a Win Win for all involved.
If the proposed Veterans Health Care Center is located in ITAP it will then become a multi-use business park. This will open the door to attracting other businesses and industries such as IT Services, Data Centers, Back Office Shared Services, Warehouse/Distribution, Call Centers, and more.
CREATE AN ENVIRONMENT WHERE BEING “FIRST IN SERVICE” IS ALWAYS PRACTICED
Those who work in city services and various departments are ambassadors of our city and are considered our living motto. Our City Council, Boards, Commissions and various other volunteer committees must also adopt our “First In Service” attitude. Let’s be the city that is known for our friendly and hospitable environment, especially when welcoming new businesses into our community.
ENCOURAGE ALL BUSINESSES TO ACHIEVE AN AESTHETICALLY PLEASING APPEARANCE
* Develop a Business Facade Improvement Plan. This may include offering financial and design assistance to our small commercial property owners in the Superblock area. Other cities have adopted this concept successfully and we can use their models to help us establish our own plan.
* Enhance the appearance of our buildings that will ultimately increase property values. The more aesthetically pleasing our businesses are the more businesses we can attract to invest in our community.
Improving the appearance of our businesses and properties helps us to uphold the quality design standards that our City continuously strives to maintain. Our visitors will value the fact that the areas where they spend their time and money are well maintained and clean. Our residents will appreciate our efforts to make Myrtle Beach clean and beautiful and our businesses will all prosper.
When I look at our downtown area I see great potential. Many cities have been successful in restoring their downtown districts to give them new life. This area can and should be the thriving heartbeat of our community as it once was.
THE “SUPERBLOCK” AREA MUST BE AN ATTRACTIVE , WELCOMING GATEWAY INTO OUR CITY
* Develop a strategic plan for our main visitor zone that gives new life and vitality to this area.
* Designate our Main Street area as “Historic Downtown Myrtle Beach” and bring the buildings that are salvageable back to their original architecture. Place historical markers that show pictures and describe their original use.
* Work with existing property owners in this area to ensure that their facades and appearance is aligned with the City’s Master plan. The success of revitalizing our downtown depends on the involvement of every business and property owner. When we strive together, we will thrive together.
THE TRUE SUCCESS OF ANY REDEVELOPMENT IS BASED ON PUBLIC/PRIVATE PARTNERSHIPS
* Create an urban plan that will attract anchor tenants and spur other investors, both small and large, to participate.
* Seek local private investors to work with the City to form public/private partnerships. I believe that we have the right people in our city who will welcome the opportunity to invest in our community.
* Offer reasonable incentives to attract new businesses to this area. A mix of small, specialty retail and boutiques, bistros and sidewalk cafes, urban living units, and art venues would ensure an exciting and successful environment that will enhance what Myrtle Beach has to offer to our residents and our visitors.
THE BUILDINGS IN OUR SUPERBLOCK AREA ARE OUR HISTORY AND WE MUST PRESERVE THOSE THAT ARE STRUCTURALLY SOUND AND VIABLE
* Facilitate a healthy balance by encouraging the preservation of our remaining historical buildings where applicable. Be it the city itself or the individual property owners.
We should never use the threat of eminent domain to entice property owners to relocate their businesses. They have invested their hard earned money, their sweat equity, and have worked diligently to be successful in their chosen location. Our small business owners should be applauded for their efforts and our city should celebrate their success and dedication.