Myrtle Beach's purchase of a gyrocopter, a $207,000 light aircraft intended as an additional eye in the sky, is on hold as the city pursues a new plan to beef up policing.
The expenditure, which uses drug forfeiture funds, was first approved in early April. Then-Police Chief Warren Gall originally said the craft would be useful in drug operations and in assisting officers in times when travel on the street was difficult.
But by April 25, officials like Councilman Wayne Gray were criticizing the expenditure, as the city grappled with a string of shootings around Easter weekend.
City Manager John Pedersen then presented a plan to increase police visibility and make the work of police more nimble in early May.
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The package, which includes five new officers and a mobile command center, totals over $1 million, and could lead to a 1.4 mill property tax increase.