Georgetown County Council heard and subsequently passed the first reading of an ordinance to regulate filming in the county at their bi-monthly meeting tonight.
If permanently passed, the ordinance would require a permit prior to filming, a schedule for the application process and an application fee for the permits. Regulations and restrictions on the time, place and manner of filming would be decided by the council before the cameras start rolling.
The proposed law comes after CMT announced a reality show filmed in Murrells Inlet over the summer, shuffling the cast in from all over the south and housing them at Kings Krest, an old waterfront home on the marsh. Residents complained to council about the noise, trash and obscene language coming from the cast and crew, and many pleaded for council’s intervention.
At a County Council meeting last month, Warren Stedman, who lives two houses down from where the show – for which a formal name has not been released – is being filmed, said the crew and characters are ruining his life.
“It has affected my family greatly,”” Stedman said. “I don’t know what can be done, but this has consumed my life for the past two weeks.”
Though the filming has wrapped up and the trailers are gone, Murrells Inlet residents are petitioning council for zoning regulations and community input when granting a permit for filming.
Councilman Jerry Oakley requested the ordinance and said he will advocate it’s passing, to prevent “a recurrence of the problems we suffered associated with the recent film production activities in Murrells Inlet,” Oakley said.
The text is being developed by the Georgetown County attorney with help from Charleston and Horry counties and the S.C. Film Commission in Columbia.
The specific text of the ordinance was not available, but will be drafted by the second reading on September 24 at the next council meeting, Oakley said.sssss
Contact CLAIRE BYUN at 626-0377 or follow her on Twitter @NeckNews.