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Emergency Declarations

During the current state of emergency, the South Carolina Office of the Governor has made emergency declarations to help protect and keep us all safe.

As of May 20, 2020: 

Governor Henry McMaster today announced that attraction facilities will be permitted to open throughout South Carolina beginning Friday, May 22nd. The governor’s announcement comes after AccelerateSC has been meeting for nearly a month to determine the safest ways to reinvigorate the state’s economy.

The “Response” component of AccelerateSC has established exhaustive safety guidelines for businesses that have been allowed to reopen. Guidelines for attraction facilities can be found here and on the AccelerateSC website, along with guidelines for all recently re-opened businesses. 

Examples of attraction facilities include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Zoos
  • Museums
  • Aquariums
  • Planetariums
  • Historic buildings and sites
  • Waterparks
  • Amusement park rides
  • Go-Kart tracks
  • Bingo facilities (specific guidelines can be found here)
  • Miniature golf facilities

For the full press release announcement, click here

As of May 11, 2020: 

Governor Henry McMaster announced that close contact service providers, fitness and exercise centers, commercial gyms, and public or commercial pools will be able to open in a limited capacity on Monday, May 18. 

Close contact service providers include the following businesses: Barber shops, hair salons, waxing salons, threading salons, nail salons and spas, body-art facilities and tattoo services, tanning salons, massage-therapy establishments and massage services.

Commercial gyms will include group exercise facilities such as yoga studios, barre classes, and others.

For the full press release, click here

As of May 8, 2020: 

Governor Henry McMaster has announced that restaurants throughout South Carolina will be allowed to reopen for limited dine-in services beginning on Monday, May 11.

Additionally, Governor McMaster announced that he has lifted all boating restrictions, as defined by Executive Order 2020-25, effective immediately. All laws and regulations concerning the safe operation of boats in South Carolina will now return to normal.

The governor’s announcement follows two weeks of meetings of accelerateSC – a group created by the governor to develop a coordinated economic revitalization plan which includes healthcare professionals, representatives from large and small businesses, local government officials, and education professionals.

The announcement also comes after the governor was joined by the state’s public health officials to announce a new statewide testing plan, which will dramatically increase the number of South Carolinians tested.

Based on advice and recommendations from the “Response” component of accelerateSC, which includes input from the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control and the South Carolina Restaurant & Lodging Association (SCRLA), Governor McMaster has established guidelines for restaurants to follow if and when they choose to open for dine-in services. Those guidelines include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Only allow 50% of posted occupancy inside, as determined by fire marshals
  • Tables should be spaced 6-8 feet apart
  • Additional cleaning and sanitizing guidelines for equipment, tables, chairs, etc.
  • Additional guidance for health checks for all employees
  • Social distancing guidance for employees and customers, including recommended

For a full list of guidelines, click here.
For the full release, click here

As of May 1, 2020:

Governor Henry McMaster has announced that the statewide “Work-or-Home” order will be lifted and returned to voluntary status on Monday, May 4th. The governor also announced that beginning on May 4th, restaurants throughout South Carolina may provide outdoor customer dining services in addition to existing take out, curbside, and delivery services. 

The governor also announced that he has lifted Executive Order 2020-19 because CDC guidance identifying “hotspots” throughout the country, which constituted the basis upon which short term rental companies were to deny reservations, has since lapsed and was not renewed. The governor has also lifted Executive Order 2020-14, which required individuals entering the state from the same “hotspots” to self-quarantine for two weeks.

Governor McMaster has established the following guidelines for restaurants to follow if they choose to open for outdoor seating.

Existing approved outdoor seating areas:

  • Tables are to be spaced a minimum of 8 feet from each other (measured from all edges of the table);
  • Limit table groups to 8 individuals;
  • Eliminate gatherings in the building when entering or exiting outdoor seating area;
  • Maintain strict social/physical distancing guidelines;
  • Tables, chairs, and seats should be sanitized after every customer

    If open areas and/or temporary tents are utilized by existing, permitted restaurants, all sides of the tent must be open and the following conditions are required:
  • Tables are to be spaced a minimum of 8 feet from each other (measured from all edges of the table);
  • Table groups are to be limited to 8 individuals;
  • State-approved fire extinguisher within 75 feet of tent area;
  • Minimum of 7-foot-6 inch headroom (ceiling height)

These guidelines, along with a list of frequently asked questions, can be found here.

For the full press release, click here.

As of April 20, 2020: 

Governor McMaster issued Executive Order 2020-28, which removes restrictions on public access points to the state’s beaches, public piers, docks, and wharfs, while delegating to local officials the authority to restrict access, as they see fit. 

The City of North Myrtle Beach opened the public access points inside the city limits beginning at 12 noon, April 21st. At an afternoon report it was stated that there were an average of 10 cars per parking lot along the 9 miles of beach access and that social distancing was being enforced and that at that time people were observing the necessary precautions. 

This order also re-opens retail stores that were closed pursuant to Executive Order 2020-18. The businesses to be reopened are as follows:
​Furniture and home-furnishings stores: 

  • Clothing, shoe, and clothing-accessory stores 
  • Jewelry, luggage, and leather goods stores 
  • Department stores, with the exception of hardware and home-improvement stores
  • Sporting goods stores 
  • Book, craft, and music stores
  • Flea markets
  • Florists and flower stores

All other businesses previously closed by executive order will remain closed until further notice. 

Under the order, retail stores re-opened April 20, at 5:00 p.m., but must adhere to strict social distancing requirements, operating at 20% occupancy or five (5) customers per 1,000 square feet, whichever is less. In addition, businesses must not knowingly allow customers to congregate within six feet of one another, excluding families, and follow relevant CDC and DHEC guidelines.  

Public boat ramps and boat landings were previously reopened pursuant to Executive Order 2020-25

All other executive orders, including the Governor’s “Home or Work” order, remain in effect. South Carolinians should maintain social distancing practices and avoid large groups of people. 

As of March 31, 2020: 

Statement from Gov. McMaster: Governor Henry McMaster today issued Executive Order 2020-17, which orders the closure of non-essential businesses, as defined by the executive order, throughout the state in order to combat the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

The businesses that will be closed as a result of the governor's executive order are here.

As of March 30, 2020: 

The City Council for the City of North Myrtle Beach revises emergency ordinance prohibiting short-term rentals in order to, among other things: 

  • Rental or use of short-term Rentals, including, but not limited to Hotels, Motels, Condo Hotels, Rental Properties, inclusive of private management companies and HOA's, Airbnb, VRBO style lodging, public and private campgrounds and other Overnight Accommodations shall be prohibited. 

  • Beginning 7 a.m. Tuesday, March 31, 2020 through April 30, 2020 shall be prohibited.

  • Visitors currently checked-in prior to March 31, 2020 may remain as long as they are abiding by the Executive Order Number 2020-14 issued by Governor Henry McMaster to self-quarantine for 14 days. 

  • Any violation of any rule or regulation issued and set forth herein shall be punishable as provided in the Code of Ordinance for the City of North Myrtle Beach, chapter 1, Section 1-6, General Penalty; each day of any violation shall constitute a separate offense. In addition, the business license issued to any person or entity who violates section 1 above shall be subject to suspension/revocation. 

The full revised emergency order can be reviewed here.

As of March 30, 2020: 

Statement from Gov. McMaster: As a result of behavior observed this past weekend by the Department of Natural Resources and South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), it has become necessary to close public access to our state’s beaches, and close boat ramps and landings on our state’s lakes, rivers and waterways. The full executive order can be found here

As of March 26, 2020:

The City Council for the City of North Myrtle Beach passed and approved an emergency ordinance in order to, among other things 

  • suspend the rental and use of Short-Term Rentals, Hotels and other Overnight Accommodations for 29 days or less 

  • Beginning 7:00 am on Friday, March 27, 2020 through April 30, 2020. 

  • Visitors currently checked in may remain until the end of their existing reservations. 

  • Rental and use of Short-Term Rentals, including, but not limited to Hotels, Motels, Condo Hotel, Rental Property, inclusive of private management companies and HOA's, Airbnb, VRBO style lodging, public and private campgrounds and other Overnight Accommodations. 

  • Exempt: Short-Term Rentals extended to Government, Hospital, Health, Agency, Law Enforcement, Military, and other Critical Personnel actively responding to COVID-19. 

For the full emergency ordinance, please review here.

As of March 20, 2020: 

Statement by Gov. McMaster: A state of emergency exists in South Carolina to prevent the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus.  To save lives, I have directed SLED and local law enforcement to disperse crowds gathered on our state's beaches. Coastal residents can responsibly maintain social distance while enjoying our state's beaches. 

That enforcement order declares that it is unlawful for a person to, “congregate, unless authorized or in their homes, in groups of three or more and to refuse to disperse upon order of a law enforcement officer.” 

The full enforcement order can be read here

As of March 17, 2020: 

Gov. McMaster directed: 

  • Restaurants and bars must close their dine-in service. 

  • Organized events of more than 50 persons in a state, county, city, or other publicly-owned facility are prohibited, except for essential government functions

  • The entire Executive Order can be found here