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A few changes are taking place at Folly Beach—all to improve the area for residents and visitors. There’s a new limit on leashed pets, a change to the towing ordinance and a Styrofoam restriction. The changes are very timely and appropriate, considering the residents of Folly Beach are constantly working to improve and maintain their beautiful neighborhood.

Along with the other beaches in the Charleston area, Folly Beach typically allows leashed pets. However, there is a new restriction in place regarding the northeastern end of Folly Beach, an undeveloped area commonly known as a former Coast Guard base. All animals are banned from this area effective immediately.

The property is owned by the Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission and is not open to the public. The area is officially zoned as a “protected area for birdlife in general and particularly for all shorebirds,” according to the city.

The official rule: “There shall be no domestic animals whatsoever allowed starting at the gate on the east end of Folly Beach and continuing on the entire parcel known as the Old Coast Guard Base and below and above the high tide line.”

In addition to the new animal restriction, the city of Folly Beach is working to pass an ordinance to prohibit the use of Styrofoam at the beach. The reasoning, according to a city rep, “These products break into tiny pieces all over the beach and make it difficult to pick up and when said Styrofoam is washed into the ocean, it poisons the fish; and … it takes Styrofoam a million years to decompose, which is not good for our environment.”

The final change is aimed at protecting people from “unscrupulous” towing companies. When a person’s car is towed off private property, without the owners’ knowledge, the process of getting their car back is often more than a challenge. There’s apparently been a problem with the towing companies acting in “price gouging and other overly stringent requirements for the return of their vehicles.”

The ordinance lays out six pages of regulations that include a requirement that towing companies have city permits and sets a maximum towing charge of $150. A similar ordinance deals with companies that immobilize vehicles with a “boot” device, also requiring permits and setting top charges.

For more information, contact the City of Folly Beach through their Web site or at 843-708-9474.