Dorchester County Council got the message Tuesday night: don't mess with recreational vehicles and boats.

Nineteen residents spoke in front of the body during a planning committee meeting public hearing in Summerville, urging County Council not to pass the boat/RV ordinance.

The plan would have made it illegal to park a boat or RV in plain sight on someone's property for more than two hours. But, the committee voted it down unanimously, and then council accepted the recommendation for denial.

Residents raised questions of practicality with the ordinance.

"It's un-American...This (ordinance) ought to be thrown in the trash," said John Dangerfield.

Suzanne Chastain wondered where the plan came from. She believes RV and boat storage facilities will make money if everyone is forced to store them.

"We've never had a problem with people complaining about RVs and campers. When ideas like this come up there is always a money trail," said Chastain, a Quail Arbor resident.

Neighborhoods in the county that are without covenants and restrictions currently offer no shield as to where someone can park a RV or boat.

Councilman Jamie Feltner agreed with residents that people move to these neighborhoods because of lax restrictions, so the county has no business adding them on.

"Some people choose to live in neighborhoods without covenants and restrictions. I'm for property owners' rights as long as it doesn't unduly impact infrastructure," Feltner said.

Councilman and planning committee chairman Chris Murphy said the plan leaves too many unknowns. He had questions about grandfathering, contractors doing work in yards and those choosing to live where there are no restrictions.

Councilman Mike Murphree saw humor in the proposed ordinance.

"What's next? Are we going to prohibit blue and pink houses?" Murphree said.

Contact Ryan Castle at 873-9424 ext. 216 or rcastle@journalscene.com.