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City of Myrtle Beach statement regarding Horry County's dismissal of lawsuit seeking to enjoin sale of city property

The City of Myrtle Beach has learned that Horry County has dismissed its December 2020 State court lawsuit seeking to prevent the city from selling two tracts of real property (the “Seascape Properties”) to the current lessees who are operators of two campground sites. 

The County’s April 15, 2021, news release states that it dismissed this lawsuit because:  (1) “[a]t Horry County’s request” the “FAA will open an investigation into the City’s proposed sale of the federally-obligated Seascape Properties,” (2) “the current [State] court action is unnecessary” and (3) the “County anticipates that the FAA will direct that all funds derived from any sale of the Seascape Properties must be transferred to the County for the specific benefit of the airport.”

  As the city pointed out in its filings in the now-dismissed State court action, for years the County repeatedly, but unsuccessfully, sought to have courts declare that the County possesses some interest in the Seascape Properties in lawsuits it has filed in both State and Federal courts, dating as far back as 1982.  Confronted with deadlines to appeal from the recent State court orders denying it an injunction to prevent the sale – which orders were based in part on the State court’s conclusion that the County has no interest in the Seascape Property – and to respond to the city’s motion to dismiss the lawsuit for that reason, the County appears to be asking the Federal government to overcome deficiencies in its legal position. 

Horry County filed what it now concedes was an unnecessary lawsuit.  As the city has consistently pointed out in multiple filings in the State court lawsuit, the Federal government has the right to make a claim in Federal court against the city if it believes that the Seascape Properties are subject to any restrictions imposed on the property by the Federal government.  

In its filings, the city also asserted that any restrictions on the Seascape Properties imposed by the Federal government never required that the city use the property for the benefit of Horry County.  Further, any restrictions were long ago released by the Federal government and waived by Horry County.