GEORGETOWN COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – The Georgetown County Council voted on Tuesday night to reopen public beach accesses on Friday.
County leaders announced that those accesses will be back open at noon on May 1. They added that adjacent parking lots to those accesses will also be open.
They did decide that the popular Murrells Inlet Marshwalk, along with the Veterans Pier and Jetty View Walkway, will remain closed until May 15.
The news had some feeling disappointed about not being able to return to a full life of normalcy. Suzanne Yed said she’s happy that leaders decided to open public beach accesses, but wants more area to reopen.
“Please open. Please open. Please let people be adults and practice social distancing and use sanitizer and practice common sense,” said Yed.
Meanwhile, some told WMBF News they’re happy with the council’s decision.
“It would have been nice for everything to be open right now, but not at the safety of others,” said beachgoer Chris Spano.
Leaders said that they made the decision to reopen public beach accesses because they trust that everyone will practice social distancing.
The Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office said it will be out in full force in order to disperse crowds that are deemed a public health hazard.
As for short-term rentals, the county council didn’t take any action to extend the ban, so it will expire on April 30, which means places like hotels and motels can start taking reservations on May 1.
This also means that Pawleys Island public beach accesses will open on Friday as well.
RELATED COVERAGE | Pawleys Island leaders extend public beach access ban to May 1
The Pawleys Island Town Council voted to keep beach accesses closed until May 1 so that they could see if Georgetown County would open up its accesses. Town leaders were worried about a large influx of people on the beach if they were the only municipality to lift the ban ahead of the county.