Divorce Attorney in Seabrook Island SC

Let's Talk!

Platform Lifts-phone-nuber 843-936-6680

If there were one universal truth it would be that every family is different. We all have our own set of challenges to face and changes to go through. Sometimes those changes are happy like when a new baby is born. Other times these changes involve uncertainty and loss like in the event of a divorce.

If you are having to go through the pain of divorce deal with a complicated custody issue or are handling a different family-related legal matter you might need help. At CHSA Law LLC we understand that family issues are hard. Many of the family law clients that we work for have big questions about the future leaving them over-stressed and full of worry. They are concerned about their children their marriage or both. They are wrestling with uncertainty and anxiety having been served confusing documents that don't make sense. Sound familiar? A family law attorney in Seabrook Island, SC can help whether you need a level-headed moderator or a trusted advocate in the courtroom.

At CHSA Law LLC we have decades of combined experience serving the needs of families from divorce proceedings to family formation issues. Our team is fiercely committed to our clients and with a dedicated focus stays up-to-date on the nuanced world of family law in Seabrook Island. If you're looking for personal attention unbiased representation and a responsive family law attorney look no further than our law firm.

Divorce Attorney Seabrook Island, SC

If you're unsure of whether you need a family law lawyers in Seabrook Island" ask yourself these questions:

  • Are you getting married?
  • Are you thinking about divorce?
  • Has your spouse served you with legal papers?
  • Are your kids not receiving the support that they are entitled to?

If you answered yes to any of the questions above know that we are here to help you figure out your next steps. With CDH Law Firm by your side you can have the confidence to face even the most difficult family law issues. All of our attorneys have years of experience are incredibly responsive and fight for your family's rights. We are happy to take as much time as you need to answer questions and help put your mind at ease for whatever lies ahead.

 Law Firm Seabrook Island, SC

Our firm specializes in a wide range of family law cases including:

  • Divorce
  • Child Custody
  • Alimony
  • Adoptions
  • Child Support
  • Mediation
  • Property Division
  • More

If you have been left to manage a foreign family law situation it's time to call CHSA Law LLC. We will sit down with you for an hour at absolutely no cost - because we understand what you're going through and know that you need answers not another bill to pay.

To help provide you with a basic understanding of family law keep reading for in-depth explanations on our areas of expertise.

The-Cobb-Dill-Hammett-Difference

Divorce lawyer in
Seabrook Island SC.

At CHSA Law LLC we know all-too-well that a one size fits all approach isn't going to work very well for your unique situation. That's why we approach each divorce case from a personalized standpoint - something that we feel like each of our clients deserves.

 Attorney Seabrook Island, SC
Our goal is to help solve your family law issues and focus on your needs when your divorce is finalized. We will help develop a strategy for:
  • Meeting your post-divorce needs and objectives
  • Dividing marital property for maximum benefit
  • Maximizing time spent with your child as part of your divorce's parenting plan
  • Strengthen your role as a decision-maker for your child
  • Navigating your divorce proceedings and minimizing financial and emotional costs

By working together our divorce law firm will help you rebuild your life and secure a better future for your family.

Divorces in South Carolina
- Different Than Other States

Unlike divorce law in other states South Carolina divorce law doesn't allow spouses to receive an instant no-fault divorce. One or both spouses in the marriage must establish a legally acceptable reason for a divorce to happen. Grounds for a divorce in Seabrook Island, SC include:

  • Desertion
  • Physical Cruelty
  • Habitual Drunkenness
  • Separation for One Year or More
  • Adultery
 Divorce Lawyer Seabrook Island, SC

If you or your spouse do not have the necessary grounds for divorce in Seabrook Island our family law firm can file a Separate Maintenance and Support action. This step lets the court order child custody alimony and marital bills until you can file for your divorce. During this period CHSA Law LLC gathers pertinent info on your spouse's character and assets that can strengthen your case should it be necessary.

Common Issues Associated
with Divorces in Seabrook Island

A divorce in Seabrook Island means more than the end of a marriage. It involves dividing the parties debts and assets determines child support and custody parameters and can establish alimony. At CHSA Law LLC many of our clients are able to reach agreements with their spouse to resolve these issues. Reaching an agreement lets both parties customize the terms of their divorce to conserve resources avoid trial and meet the family's needs.

Sometimes however two spouses cannot or will not come to terms with an agreement. In these situations a trial is possible and litigation is necessary. Our family law attorneys in Seabrook Island, SC. are highly experienced litigators and are well-equipped to handle any disputes revealed in the conference or courtroom.

Common divorce issues include:

Divorce Attorney Seabrook Island, SC
1.

Child Custody and Visitation

One of the most heart-wrenching difficult decisions for parents going through a divorce is resolving child custody and visitation issues. Child custody refers to how much time each parent will spend with their child and whether they can make decisions for them. According to South Carolina law child custody and visitation time are based on what is best for the child.

 Law Firm Seabrook Island, SC
2.

Child Support

Like other U.S states a formula is used in South Carolina to determine how much child support a person must pay. This formula recommends the amount of child support based on factors like how much income the parents make the cost of childcare and the obligation to support children from other relationships.

 Attorney Seabrook Island, SC
3.

Alimony

In South Carolina there is no formula to determine how much alimony a person must pay. However courts consider several factors when deciding if alimony is needed how much alimony should be paid and how long a spouse must pay it. Those factors include each spouse's ability and need to pay alimony how long the marriage lasted and any marital misconduct that occurred. To make matters more confusing there are different alimony types including lump sum rehabilitative and reimbursement.

 Divorce Lawyer Seabrook Island, SC
4.

Distribution of Property

In South Carolina marital property is the property that each spouse amasses from the date of the wedding to the time a spouse files for divorce. That property can often include marital debt. In a South Carolina divorce the courts will order an equitable division of property meaning fair under all circumstances but not necessarily equal.

Divorce Attorney Seabrook Island, SC

Understanding Child Custody in Seabrook Island, SC.

As mentioned above decisions that involve child custody and visitation can be contentious for parents both emotionally and legally. As experienced empathetic divorce lawyers we understand how difficult this process can be. When we work with clients going through child custody battles we always make it a point to be with them through the ups and downs to help them stay centered. Whether you are the husband or wife in your divorce we share a common goal: finding an effective way to support your children and assure their wellbeing.

In South Carolina child custody is a loaded term. In the most general definition child custody determines when each parent is responsible for the physical care of the child and how much authority each parent has to make decisions in their child's life.

No two child custody cases are the same but a negotiated custody arrangement is usually preferred in the judge's eyes as each parent has input in the process. If the parents cannot come to an amicable resolution their fate is left in the hands of a Family Court Judge in South Carolina. The focus of child custody law is always on what is in the best interests of the child. What the judge determines to be the best interests changes depending on the judge.

There are different variations of custody in South Carolina (or custody arrangements) each with varying degrees of authority. When you consult with our family law attorneys at CHSA Law LLC we will go over the child custody process in detail and touch on each distinction to eliminate any confusion you have.

  • Help develop cooperative solutions to disputes or mediate when needed
  • Create an equitable parenting plan
  • Discuss the implications of the different forms of joint and sole custody
  • Problems related to child support
  • Modify court orders if you or your child's circumstances change
  • Enforcement of visitation and custody agreements
  • Much more
Many of the family law clients that walk into our office have big questions that are leaving them full of stress and worry. <

Many of the family law clients that walk into our office have big questions that are leaving them full of stress and worry.

 Law Firm Seabrook Island, SC

Understanding Child Support
in Seabrook Island, SC.

When children are involved in divorce cases child support is often ordered. Several factors can impact whether child support is ordered like the income-earning potential of the child's parents any custody arrangements that are created and what needs the child may have.

At CHSA Law LLC we have years of experience with child support issues relating to:

  • Cases where child support is needed for stay-at-home parents
  • Modifications and enforcement of child support mandates
  • Resolving support and custody disputes
  • Mediation arrangements to reach an agreement on child support. Compared to litigation going
  • the mediated route often means less stress and is more cost-effective than trial.

When you trust our family law firm in Seabrook Island for representation we can help calculate an estimate of how much child support you or your spouse may be ordered to pay. We can also perform a needs-based analysis in cases that involve large amounts of income. At the end of the day our goal is to make this frustrating process as stress-free as possible for you so that you can focus on living life and caring for your child.

Understanding Alimony in
Seabrook Island, SC.

Alimony (sometimes called spousal support or maintenance) is ordered by the court or negotiated between parties. This kind of spousal support has many factors like the income of both spouses how long they were married and the age of each spouse. Like child custody and child support trusted legal guidance is strongly recommended if you are facing potential alimony payments. Our family law attorneys will help you reach amicable arrangements for fair and appropriate alimony payments.

At CHSA Law LLC your family law attorney in Seabrook Island, SC will help protect your interests and rights regarding:

 Attorney Seabrook Island, SC
  • Alimony and business assets
  • Permanent or long-term alimony
  • Significant alimony in high-asset divorces
  • Modifications to alimony arrangements when you or your spouse's circumstances change
  • Enforcement of spousal support mandates when needed

Understanding Division of
Property in Seabrook Island, SC.

When there are no children marital property or issues of alimony divorces often proceed smoothly between amicable spouses. However most divorces in South Carolina are much more complex. Typically divorce involves a union between spouses that lasts for years and involves substantial marital property. This property can be personal property real estate family businesses debts out-of-state property debts bank accounts and more.

In these nuanced situations the applicable parties need assistance dividing their property. This help most often comes from seasoned family law attorneys like CHSA Law LLC.

When it comes to distribution of property certain types of properties that are controversial even under the property division rules in South Carolina. South Carolina is an equitable distribution state meaning that marital property is divided equitably but not always equally.

If you are going through a divorce it's important that you are aware of the following assets and the common issues their division presents:

 Divorce Lawyer Seabrook Island, SC
Pensions

Pensions:

Generally pensions are the second-largest asset in a marriage. When there are sufficient alternative income sources to compensate the non-pension holder South Carolina divorce courts may leave the pension rights with the spouse who earned it with future distribution available. Otherwise a divorce court may enter a Qualified Domestic Relations Order requiring the pension administrator to pay both the former spouse and worker.

Family Home

Family Home:

The family home or the primary residential property owned by the divorcing couple is usually considered a marriage's biggest asset. Dividing this kind of property can be complex and frustrating especially when there are kids involved.

Many divorcing couples have a hard time reaching an agreement on property division. Because the division of property depends on the complexity of you or your spouse's assets and liabilities it is crucial to consult with an experienced family law attorney to provide guidance.

Latest News in Seabrook Island, SC

First-ever committee addresses Seabrook Island short-term rentals

SEABROOK ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - A first-time special committee on short-term rentals is hearing Seabrook Island residents’ concerns and hopes for the island’s future.The Seabrook Island Town Council established a Special Committee on Short-Term Rentals on Jan. 4 with the members being appointed on Jan. 23.The committee’s purpose is to study short-term rental activities and trends within the town. This could involve limiting the number of short-term rentals, limiting the ownership of multiple short-term rentals,...

SEABROOK ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - A first-time special committee on short-term rentals is hearing Seabrook Island residents’ concerns and hopes for the island’s future.

The Seabrook Island Town Council established a Special Committee on Short-Term Rentals on Jan. 4 with the members being appointed on Jan. 23.

The committee’s purpose is to study short-term rental activities and trends within the town. This could involve limiting the number of short-term rentals, limiting the ownership of multiple short-term rentals, what fees are reasonable, etc.

Seabrook Island is home to 2,345 family homes and villas and 588 of those are short-term rentals, according to the town.

With about 25% of the island being taken up by short-term rentals, some residents say there are issues that need to be addressed.

“Agitating alligators,” Seabrook Island resident John Lagna said during Wednesday’s first public forum. “Secondly, speeding. Thirdly, ignoring stop signs... Lastly, ignoring amenity rules.”

However, not everyone agrees.

“There are a number of factors that have entered into it, but short-term rentals seem to be an easy target,” resident Debra Hardick said.

The committee says they are referencing data from peak COVID-19 times from when the number of renters significantly increased.

Resident Paul McLaughlin says the growth of the island has impacted the overall sense of community.

“If you don’t know who your neighbors are, it’s just not a very good feeling,” McLaughlin said.

The committee is made up of a town councilman, homeowners and even short-term rental owners who have been on the island for around a decade or more. They say the town has previously had an Ad Hoc Committee to address this topic, which was allowed to be done privately, but they want this one to be public to increase transparency.

Darryl May is the only town councilman on the short-term rental committee while the other seven are residents.

“So, the goal of this committee is to develop a set of proposals for the town council to pass an ordinance,” May said.

During the public forum, some shared ideas for what that ordinance may or may not look like.

“I think we should allow renters,” resident Ann Laporte said. “I think we should allow a minimum of three nights. No more than that.”

Resident Bill Boissonalt has another idea, adding that the town shouldn’t still be referencing data from peak COVID in 2020.

“I just don’t believe that we need any new regulations regarding the overnight stay, the capped rentals, based on history,” Boissonalt said.

As far as what the committee thinks the ordinance could look like, May says he doesn’t want to jump the gun.

“I won’t hazard to guess because we’re just starting out this process and we want to have a very open mind,” May said. “But we do anticipate getting an ordinance by about June.”

There are still three more public hearings over the next two weeks and the committee encourages Seabrook Island residents and those who rent on the island to speak.

Click here to read more about past short-term rental data and sign up for public comment.

Read below for the details on the next three public forums:

Public Forum #2

Public Forum #3

Public Forum #4

Copyright 2024 WCSC. All rights reserved.

The Best Islands In South Carolina, According To Our Readers

From celebrated golf courses to unspoiled beaches, these destinations have it all.South Carolina is often referred to as the Palmetto State, so named for the abundance of the trees in the area, but it could just as easily be dubbed the Barrier Island State. With 34 barrier and tidal islands peppering its shoreline (more than any other state ...

From celebrated golf courses to unspoiled beaches, these destinations have it all.

South Carolina is often referred to as the Palmetto State, so named for the abundance of the trees in the area, but it could just as easily be dubbed the Barrier Island State. With 34 barrier and tidal islands peppering its shoreline (more than any other state except for Florida), South Carolina spills over with natural wonders, beautiful beaches, and unique destinations to explore. In our 2024 South's Best awards, readers voted on some of the very best of them. Here are the best islands in South Carolina, according to our readers.

The South's Best 2024

01 of 10

Hilton Head Island

With 12 miles of public beaches, more than 24 championship golf courses, and around 250 restaurants, Hilton Head's numerical stats alone prove why it's one of the state's most beloved islands. But the real magic, of course, belongs to its community—a mix of transplants and born-and-breds who are sure to make you feel right at home, whether you're sampling local oysters at Hudson's on the Docks or watching the boats come in at Shelter Cove Marina.

Explore Hilton Head

02 of 10

Isle of Palms

There’s nothing sleepy about this mile-wide destination just a short drive from downtown Charleston, where the activity and restaurant offerings belie its small size. Catch a concert at beachfront venue The Windjammer, play golf or tennis at nearby resort Wild Dunes (where you can book a stay in one of the property’s two inns or numerous vacation rentals), or shake out your towel on a sliver of the island’s six miles of sandy beaches for a leisurely day in the sun.

Explore Isle of Palms

03 of 10

Kiawah Island

While much of this tree-shaded barrier island is accessible only to those staying at Kiawah Island Golf Resort (either at The Sanctuary hotel or in one of their many rental properties), Beachwalker Park on the island’s west end is home to one of the state’s most beautiful beaches. Here, you’ll find both ocean-fronting shoreline and river views and can rent chairs and umbrellas for a no-fuss beach day. On your way, pick up deli sandwiches from The Station, an old-school convenience store in Freshfields Village, for an easy picnic.

Explore Kiawah Island

04 of 10

Edisto Island

This sea island about an hour’s drive from Charleston feels like a throwback in all the best ways. You won’t find high-rise hotels here, and the wildest nights are Tuesdays and Thursdays from the end of May through the beginning of August when the Edisto Island Lions Club hosts bingo (no booze allowed). For seasonally driven fare made with locally sourced ingredients, settle in for a meal at Ella and Ollie's (pictured above). The area’s crowning jewel is Botany Bay, a 4,600-acre nature preserve with nearly three miles of unspoiled shoreline, where erosion has left dead trees in its wake, resulting in a beautiful, otherworldly span referred to as the “boneyard beach.”

Explore Edisto Island

05 of 10

Sullivan’s Island

Just two-and-a-half miles long, Sullivan’s is a secret that Charleston locals are keen to keep. First settled in the late 17th century, the island can claim an embarrassment of riches when it comes to both historical significance and natural beauty. The wide beaches are pristine, and there’s nary a trace of touristy kitsch on Middle Street, the town’s main drag—just a handful of memorable eateries (we’re partial to The Obstinate Daughter’s house-made pastas) and well-curated shops (visit Sandpiper Gallery to peruse the work of local artists). The bitty beach town is big on curb appeal too: thoughtfully maintained historic homes and storybook cottages with flower-swamped trellises line the streets that crawl toward the beach.

06 of 10

Folly Island

About a dozen miles from downtown Charleston, this 12-square-mile barrier island is best known for being home to Folly Beach, a laid-back surf town that departs from the Holy City’s tucked-in approach in favor of flip-flop casual. With the Folly River on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other, there’s no shortage of opportunities for waterfront fun: Paddle through tidal creeks with a local outfitter, stretch out on the sand (there are six miles of beachfront here), or cast a line from the historic Folly Beach Pier, which recently reopened after extensive renovations.

Explore Folly Beach

07 of 10

Hunting Island

Just a 25-minute drive from downtown Beaufort, explore the seaside charmer's wilder side at Hunting Island State Park (South Carolina's most popular state park). Here, five miles of unspoiled beaches unfurl along the Atlantic and sandy trails wind through dense maritime forest.

08 of 10

Daufuskie Island

As the crow flies, the southernmost of South Carolina’s barrier islands is just miles from Savannah and Hilton Head, but it might as well be worlds away. Daufuskie is accessible only by boat (the official ferry offers four shuttles from Bluffton a day, five on Fridays), which is likely one of the reasons its 500 or so residents have been able to so carefully preserve its natural environment and its rich Gullah history. And while the island remains untouched in many ways, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to see or do here: Tour the island with sixth-generation Daufuskie native Sallie Ann Robinson for an education in Gullah culture; go for a horseback ride on the beach; shop indigo-dyed goods at Daufuskie Blues; and cap off the day with a plate of deviled crab at Old Daufuskie Crab Company.

Explore Daufuskie

09 of 10

Fripp Island

About 20 miles from Beaufort, Fripp Island is a 3,000-acre designated wildlife sanctuary, home to more than 175 species of birds, plus endangered loggerhead turtles who use its beach as a nesting ground. The private island is accessible only to homeowners and those staying in vacation rentals, but once you're here, there's plenty to do, from guided kayak eco-tours to pickleball and golf.

10 of 10

Seabrook Island

Right next door to Kiawah Island, Seabrook has stunning saltmarsh vistas and celebrated golf courses, along with a full-service equestrian center that offers guided horseback rides. Its nearly four miles of beaches are private, accessible only to residents and those renting, though Bohicket Marina (just before the property’s gates) welcomes anyone and everyone to enjoy its river views. Snag a table on the upper deck of Salty Dog Cafe to tuck into fresh seafood with one of the area’s most memorable sunsets.

Editorial: Seabrook Island, other beach towns, should respect Johns Island growth boundary

There are several powerful reasons why Seabrook Island Town Council should reject a proposed annexation that would pave the way for a new boat dock, private clubhouse, boathouse, pool house and 10 rental cottages near the town's northern limits.The additional boat and car traffic would create more congestion on Betsy Kerrison Parkway in particular and Johns Island in general, as well as more pollution to the otherwise pristine Bohicket Creek. But the biggest reason Town Council should reject the 18-acre annexation is the dangerous pre...

There are several powerful reasons why Seabrook Island Town Council should reject a proposed annexation that would pave the way for a new boat dock, private clubhouse, boathouse, pool house and 10 rental cottages near the town's northern limits.

The additional boat and car traffic would create more congestion on Betsy Kerrison Parkway in particular and Johns Island in general, as well as more pollution to the otherwise pristine Bohicket Creek. But the biggest reason Town Council should reject the 18-acre annexation is the dangerous precedent it would set, a precedent that would erode the rural character of southern Johns Island.

Decades ago, local governments, led by the city of Charleston and Charleston County, agreed on an urban growth boundary across Johns Island and other areas. The big idea was to ensure their zoning and other policies were synchronized to allow suburban development to continue to spread, but only up to a point, beyond which the existing rural nature would be preserved. The boundary has generally worked well, but as with so much other conservation work, it needs to be embraced and reaffirmed by each new generation.

Seabrook Island's potential move would mark one of the first and most dramatic annexations by a municipality into the rural portion of the island; if it succeeds, it almost assuredly wouldn't be the last, and it could hasten the unraveling of the boundary line — and increase development pressures on the shrinking amount of land on the rural side of the boundary.

Robby Maynor of the Coastal Conservation League agrees that annexing and rezoning this property on the rural side of the urban growth boundary would set a disastrous precedent on the county's Sea Islands and could lead to annexation battles such as those that are playing out along the most rural stretches of the upper Ashley River, whose rural historic district remains in jeopardy from encroaching homes, stores and the traffic they bring. Approving the marina project would be "like kicking an anthill and hoping you don't get bit," he says.

The case that the property's owner and other supporters have made for the annexation is that it would give Seabrook Island future control of the site and limit future development there, according to reporter Warren Wise. But the proposal appears to us as designed to facilitate development, not to curb it. Annexing the site, which is next to Bohicket Marina, would allow it to tie into the town's sewer system.

Unfortunately, Seabrook Island's Planning Commission has recommended annexing the site and rezoning it for a mixed-used development. We urge Town Council members to reject that move when they consider the matter Aug. 22.

As Mr. Wise noted, the project is a scaled-down version of a 30-year-old Andell Harbor project that state environmental regulators rightly and mercifully rejected. While this is smaller, with only about 4 acres of development near the creek and the rest set aside for open space, it still would represent an unwelcome and disturbing encroachment into the rural area between the barrier islands of Kiawah and Seabrook and the suburban growth from the city of Charleston.

Last year, we urged elected officials, neighborhood leaders and planners with Charleston County and the two beach towns to come up with a mutually agreed-upon overlay for their shared area at the southern tip of Johns Island. That overlay should guide future development toward the kinds of uses — and the sizes and scale — residents of all three jurisdictions would most like to see, and help address growing real estate pressures in a way residents prefer. We repeat the call for regional cooperation, and Seabrook Island's rejection of this annexation would be an important first step.

Code enforcement reports show violations of short-term rentals on Seabrook Island

SEABROOK ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - The debate on short-term rentals continues on Seabrook Island as the special committee met with code enforcement and the property owner’s association to see how much of a burden short-term rentals are causing them.The purpose of the committee is to study short-term rental activities and trends within the town. This could involve limiting the number of...

SEABROOK ISLAND, S.C. (WCSC) - The debate on short-term rentals continues on Seabrook Island as the special committee met with code enforcement and the property owner’s association to see how much of a burden short-term rentals are causing them.

The purpose of the committee is to study short-term rental activities and trends within the town. This could involve limiting the number of short-term rentals, limiting the ownership of multiple short-term rentals, what fees are reasonable, etc.

Seabrook Island is home to 2,345 family homes and villas and 588 of those are short-term rentals, according to the town.

Town councilman Darryl May, who’s also the chair of the committee, said they have heard over 450 comments both written and at the public forums.

He said they show how divided the island really is over whether or not to cap the number or push any more enforcement.

“There probably should be better enforcement of our rules, nuisance-type rules, on the island,” May said. “More understandable enforcement. Things of that nature.”

Town of Seabrook Island Mayor Bruce Kleinman said one of the main takeaways for him was that people are assuming what they want is the opposite of what they think the committee will do. However, he said there’s just no way of knowing that without an outcome and people need to be patient with the process.

“The process is working,” Kleinman said. “I think people in the town need to be a little patient.”

Members of the town’s code enforcement team presented their findings over the last nine months of alleged and identified violations during Wednesday’s meeting.

They found that only 7% of the identified coming from STRs. However, town administrator Joseph Cronin says some of the nuisance violations could overlap.

“There’s probably more violations that are out there,” Cronin said. “But if it’s not reported to us, it’s not observed by us, it’s obviously not going to be reflected in our data.”

Short-term rentals have 27 out of the 378 total found violations. Out of those, just over half came from vehicles parked in a yard or landscape area. The next most were overnight occupancy exceeding the permitted amount. Three violations were found for advertising a non-permitted short-term rental unit.

The team said if they discover a short-term rental has three violations, which they either admitted to or were found guilty in court, they can be suspended. Only then can the town revoke its short-term rental license.

“We felt like that was a little too lenient,” Cronin said. “...A couple incidences where we thought it may be more appropriate to be able to take more dramatic action earlier.”

He said there’s another idea.

“Three violations could be immediate revocation,” Cronin said.

May say he’s heard the argument that STRs lead to people wanting to move full-time to the island. But both he and Kleinman also understand that nuisances, like trash and noise, can be a big deterrent.

The committee has several more meetings before they take their recommendations to the town council which gives the final approval. The goal is to wrap this up by the end of June.

“Even if it isn’t what each Seabrooker hoped for, it will at least be a result that they perceive was reached in a fair way,” Kleinman said.

For the full list of code enforcement violations over the past nine months, read below.

Copyright 2024 WCSC. All rights reserved.

Editorial: We dodged a bullet on Seabrook. Make sure it doesn't happen again.

Everyone who cares about southern Johns Island should be pleased that a controversial annexation was pulled from the Seabrook Island Town Council's agenda last week in the face of mounting opposition over what the annexation would help create — a new boat dock, private clubhouse, boathouse, pool house and 10 rental cottages — and the likelihood that it would add more traffic and pollution to the rural side of Charleston County's urban growth boundary.But those same folks, particularly leaders on Kiawah and Seabrook islands...

Everyone who cares about southern Johns Island should be pleased that a controversial annexation was pulled from the Seabrook Island Town Council's agenda last week in the face of mounting opposition over what the annexation would help create — a new boat dock, private clubhouse, boathouse, pool house and 10 rental cottages — and the likelihood that it would add more traffic and pollution to the rural side of Charleston County's urban growth boundary.

But those same folks, particularly leaders on Kiawah and Seabrook islands and Charleston County Council, should not get complacent. Instead, they need to work together on better planning to guide development in and around where those two sea islands meet up with southern Johns Island.

It's unclear when, or if, the developer's annexation request might resurface. Even if it doesn't, there undoubtedly will be other development plans that will expose the tensions between those living on rural Johns Island and those living beyond the gates at Kiawah and Seabrook. This moment offers an important reset, one that should begin with getting all these local governments to recommit to the vision of an urban growth boundary — a line past which suburban development would not be supported through zoning, infrastructure or other local policies.

Such a recommitment wouldn't bind future councils any more than their respective comprehensive plans do, but it would send a unified message about their mutual commitment to respect the natural beauty and environmental sensitivity of the area.

It's clear that development pressures at Kiawah's and Seabrook's doorstep are increasing. A fresh series of new developments, including a senior living facility and an emergency medical facility, is cropping up. Elected officials, neighborhood leaders and county planners need to come up with a mutually agreed-upon zoning overlay for the area, one that would guide future development to ensure new uses and the size and scale of new buildings are appropriate. Such an overlay also would prevent developers from trying to play one jurisdiction against another to get the permits they seek, a tactic sometimes used in other parts of the tri-county area.

The mutual interests of everyone became clear during this recent annexation controversy, as the mayor of Kiawah Island took the unusual step of sending a letter to Seabrook's mayor and council urging them to reject the annexation and respect the urban growth boundary, which Mayor John Labriola noted "serves as a guide to direct appropriate urban and suburban development while preserving and cherishing the rural charm of the Sea Islands that we all hold dear."

Given what we've seen this summer, the existing urban growth boundary line may not continue to be enough on its own, and we believe a joint planning effort could help pin down the following: to what extent commercial development in the greater Freshfields area should be allowed to inch its way north on Betsy Kerrison; whether the towns should annex any more of Johns Island; whether any upzoning in the area might be appropriate; and how new building would affect the net traffic and drainage needs around Kiawah and Seabrook. While residents live only on Kiawah or Seabrook or in the unincorporated area, they have a stake in the answers to all those questions. This area deserves a new zoning overlay and conservation goals that offer a shared vision of how the southern part of Johns Island will — and will not — change.

Regional planning needs to take place on a large scale — such as our greater metro area from Seabrook to Awendaw to Summerville and Moncks Corner — but it's also necessary on a smaller scale, especially in those places such as southern Johns Island where multiple local governmental jurisdictions meet.

Decades ago, the city of Charleston and Charleston County came up with the urban growth boundary across Johns Island and other areas where the suburbs ended to ensure their zoning and other policies worked together to protect rural areas that residents wanted to remain rural. Kiawah and Seabrook were once seen as too distant to bring into the conversation about that line. That's not the case any more.

Click here for more opinion content from The Post and Courier.

Get a weekly recap of South Carolina opinion and analysis from The Post and Courier in your inbox on Monday evenings.

Disclaimer:

This website publishes news articles that contain copyrighted material whose use has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. The non-commercial use of these news articles for the purposes of local news reporting constitutes "Fair Use" of the copyrighted materials as provided for in Section 107 of the US Copyright Law.