Letters to the Editor

Duckworth did nothing wrong in contracts

We are all familiar with the ‘60s TV series, “Dragnet,” in which Sgt. Joe Friday would always state, “Just the facts, sir.” Consequently, I would like to state the facts regarding Greg Duckworth and his involvement with the North Myrtle Beach sports complex that our firm is designing.

Our firm, Mozingo and Wallace Architects, was awarded the sports complex based on merit. Awards to design professionals of publicly funded projects in South Carolina are never done as a bid process, as such a process is not allowed. Our firm’s selection was based primarily on the success of the recently completed North Myrtle Beach Central Park, which was brought in on time and under budget.

Our firm was selected for that project after an extensive submission process involving more than 20 firms. In addition, our firm has enjoyed a more than 25-year history of working with the city of North Myrtle Beach.

It should be noted that Mr. Duckworth was not a member of our central park design team. It was my decision, and my decision only, to have him on my team for the sports complex. This is a complex project, with many team members, and Mr. Duckworth’s firm plays only a small professional role. The professional fees going to Mr. Duckworth’s firm and Wood and Partners will be less than 10 percent of the total project fees.

Our firm’s professional relationship with Mr. Duckworth goes back 20 years, long before he ever became a North Myrtle Beach city councilman. During this time, Mr. Duckworth’s firm has consistently done the majority of our landscape architectural and planning work. Greg Duckworth recused himself from all votes pertaining to the sports complex, therefore having no vote on the outcome of the city’s decisions on the complex. The fact is, as a councilman, Greg Duckworth has never had any contracts with the city of North Myrtle Beach, while having done considerable free work that he has provided to the city at no cost to its citizens.

I do not live in North Myrtle Beach nor can I vote in this election. Greg Duckworth is my friend and he is a man who is highly committed to his family and the North Myrtle Beach community. He is honest, hard working and has the highest of ethical standards. With respect to him having been very well off due to his position on council, I have not seen or experienced this statement of wealth from Greg. It is unfair and unfortunate for letter writers to discredit him by insinuating that Greg has done something unethical.

This is just the facts, sir.

The writer lives in Myrtle Beach.

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