April 6, 2020 — 7:00 pm
Governor Issues “Home or Work” Order
On April 6, 2020, Governor Henry McMaster issued Executive Order No. 2020-21, which implemented a mandatory “Home or Work Order” for the State of South Carolina. The order, which will take effect at 5:00 pm on Tuesday, April 7th, requires that all South Carolinians must remain at home or work unless participating in one of the following “Essential Activities”:
- Caring for or visiting a family member in another residence or transporting or travelling with a family member, provided that such activity is conducted with appropriate consideration of, and adherence to, guidance issued by state and federal public health and safety officials, to include the CDC, with regard to “social distancing.”
- Obtaining necessary supplies and services for family or household members, such as food and supplies for household consumption and use, medical supplies or medication, supplies and equipment needed to work from home, and products needed to maintain safety, sanitation, and essential maintenance of the home or residence. Preference should be given to online ordering, home delivery, and curbside pick-up and delivery options and services wherever possible as opposed to in-store shopping.
- Engaging in activities essential for the health and safety of family or household members, such as seeking medical, behavioral health, or emergency services.
- Caring for pets, provided that such activity is conducted with appropriate consideration of, and adherence to, guidance issued by state and federal public health and safety officials, to include the CDC, with regard to “social distancing.”
- Engaging in outdoor exercise or recreational activities, provided that a minimum distance of six (6) feet is maintained during such activities between all persons who are not occupants of the same Residence.
- Attending religious services conducted in churches, synagogues, or other houses of worship.
- Travelling as required by law, to include attending any court proceedings and transporting children as required by court order or custody agreement.
The new order does not mandate the closure of any additional businesses beyond those which have already been closed by previous orders. The order also requires that all retail stores which are allowed to remain open must allow the lesser of 5 customers for each 1,000 square feet of retail space, or 20 percent of their maximum fire rated capacity, inside at any one time. Violations of the Governor’s order are considered a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, are subject to a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or imprisonment for not more than thirty days.
More Information: View Governor’s Executive Order No. 2020-21
Additional Restrictions on Short-Term Rentals
On April 1, 2020, Seabrook Island Town Council adopted Emergency Ordinance 2020-01, which prohibited the acceptance of all new short-term rental reservations for a lease term of 28 days or less between April 2nd and April 30th. The ordinance also prohibited all new check-ins between April 5th and April 30th. Under the ordinance, owners and managers of rental units could continue to accept reservations for a lease term of more than 28 days (such as monthly rentals) and guests could continue to check-in to such units.
On Friday, April 3, 2020, Governor Henry McMaster issued Executive Order No. 2020-19, which established additional restrictions on short-term rental units and other types of lodging across the state. The order, which was effective immediately, prohibits owners and managers of all types of lodging (including short-term rental units) from “making or accepting new reservations or bookings from or for individuals residing in or travelling from any country, state, municipality, or other geographic area subject to or identified in a CDC travel advisory or other CDC notice as a location with extensive community transmission of COVID-19, to include the Tri-State Area (consisting of the States of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut).” The Governor’s order applies to any such reservation or booking for a rental term of less than 90 days and will remain in place for the duration of the state of emergency.
On Monday, April 6th, Mayor John Gregg issued Executive Order No. 2020-03 to prohibit owners and managers of all types of lodging (including short-term rental units) from making or accepting new reservations or bookings for a lease term of less than 90 days for individuals residing in or travelling from any location included in the Governor’s order.
The town’s prohibition on the acceptance of all new reservations until April 30th remains unchanged. Owners and managers of rental properties within the town may continue to accept new reservations and check-ins for lease terms longer than 28 days; however, new reservations for individuals residing in or traveling from areas with extensive community transmission of COVID-19, including the States of New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and countries with a “Level 3 Travel Notice” (China, Iran and most European Countries) are prohibited unless the term of the lease is for 90 days or more.
Governor Orders Closure of Additional Businesses
On Friday, April 3rd, the Governor also issued Executive Order No. 2020-18, which expanded the list of “non-essential” businesses which must be closed to the public. Effective Monday, April 6th, at 5:00 pm, the following types of retail establishments must be closed:
- 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
The Governor’s order does not prohibit the continued operation of retail stores for the limited purpose of fulfilling online or telephone orders or providing alternate means of purchasing or delivering products or services—to include curbside purchase, pickup, or delivery and home or off-site delivery—provided that such options or measures can be implemented in a manner that facilitates and maintains effective “social distancing” and is consistent with any applicable guidance issued by state and federal public health and safety officials.
More Information: View Governor’s Executive Order No. 2020-18
Seabrook Island Town Hall Closed
As a reminder, Town Hall remains closed and members of town staff are working remotely to provide “virtual services” to residents and business owners. For assistance during normal operating hours (Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 4:00 pm), please contact us by phone at (843) 768-9121 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The town’s Code Enforcement Officers and Beach Patrol will remain active on the island as long as it is safe for them to do so. All public meetings have been cancelled through April 30th, with the exception of emergency meetings.
Protect Yourself and Others
To minimize the risk of exposure and to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the CDC recommends that individuals take the following precautions:
- Hand Hygiene: Wash your hands with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds, use hand sanitizer, avoid of touching your face and mouth, and avoid shaking hands with others.
- Social Distancing: Maintain at least six feet of separation between yourself and others.
- Travel: Avoid unnecessary travel, especially to areas of high concentrations of cases of infection.
- Limit Contact with the Sick and Elderly: Cease visits to nursing homes and other extended care facilities, except in the case of end-of-life circumstances.
For general questions about COVID-19, please contact the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) Care Line at (855) 472-3432. Staff will be available to answer calls from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm seven days a week.
For the most reliable information about COVID-19, including what to do if you or a loved one is experiencing symptoms, residents are strongly encouraged to visit official resources, including the SCDHEC and CDC websites.
Official updates from the Town of Seabrook Island will continue to be posted on the following channels:
- Town WEBSITE: www.townofseabrookisland.org
- Town TWITTER feed: www.twitter.com/seabrookislnd87
- Town FACEBOOK page: www.facebook.com/townofseabrookisland
Property Owners with rental guests should forward this notice to their rental guests.
-Submitted by Joseph M. Cronin, Town Administrator, Town of Seabrook Island.