January 10, 2019

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S.C. agriculture agency wants millions for ‘build-it-and-they-will-come’ program

By RICK BRUNDRETT The S.C. Department of Agriculture, which for years has been involved with taxpayer-backed economic development projects, now wants millions to construct buildings statewide in hopes of attracting new agribusinesses. In his written budget request for the 2019-20 fiscal year, Agriculture Commissioner Hugh Weathers said the agency needed another $1 million to “continue […]

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January 8, 2019

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Private individuals’ financial records fair game under S.C. House bill

By RICK BRUNDRETT Private citizens could be forced to testify before and turn over their financial records to S.C. House or Senate committees under a House bill filed for the new legislative session that starts today. Contacted Monday by The Nerve, former Rep. Mike Pitts, R-Laurens, who announced last month he was resigning from office […]

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December 24, 2018

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Happy Holidays, Y’all!

state house

  To Our Readers: The Nerve will not be publishing this week and early next in observance of the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. Thank you for all your support this year; we are planning many hard-hitting stories for 2019 to hold politicians and other public officials accountable. So stay tuned!

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December 20, 2018

Comments Off on Bill would divert gas-tax-hike money to interstate widening projects

Bill would divert gas-tax-hike money to interstate widening projects

  By RICK BRUNDRETT A proposal by a longtime S.C. senator would siphon millions from a main source of gas-tax-hike revenues that lawmakers promised would go toward fixing the state’s crumbling roads and bridges, and instead earmark that money for widening interstates. It also could be a way around what the state transportation chief previously […]

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December 18, 2018

Comments Off on Special corruption prosecutor won’t seek release of Harrell file

Special corruption prosecutor won’t seek release of Harrell file

By RICK BRUNDRETT The special prosecutor assigned to investigate legislative corruption won’t seek the public release of the long-closed file on the former S.C. House speaker whose case launched the State House probe, according to an attorney representing news media in South Carolina. The State Law Enforcement Division, which assisted special prosecutor David Pascoe, denied […]

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December 14, 2018

Comments Off on Little-known S.C. panel regularly OKs requests to release sensitive information

Little-known S.C. panel regularly OKs requests to release sensitive information

By RICK BRUNDRETT For at least two years, a few members of an obscure state panel have routinely approved requests by public- and private-sector researchers for sensitive information contained in a massive health “data warehouse,” records reviewed by The Nerve show. The medical records database, managed by the state Revenue and Fiscal Affairs (RFA) Office, […]

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December 11, 2018

Comments Off on Big pay hike sought by S.C. judges also would fatten their retirement wallets

Big pay hike sought by S.C. judges also would fatten their retirement wallets

south carolina judicial department, judiciary

By RICK BRUNDRETT A little-known state law allows eligible judges in South Carolina to receive generous retirement pay for as much as a dozen years at the same time they’re collecting their regular six-figure salaries. S.C. Supreme Court Chief Justice Donald Beatty, who heads the state Judicial Department, is now asking for a 33-percent pay […]

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December 3, 2018

Comments Off on Pot of unspent gas-tax-hike revenues grows to nearly $361 million

Pot of unspent gas-tax-hike revenues grows to nearly $361 million

By RICK BRUNDRETT As of the end of October, nearly $361 million in collected gas-tax-hike revenues had not been spent – 16 months after the law authorizing the increases went into effect, recently released records show. The $360.9 million balance represented about 45 percent of the $802.2 million in “project commitments” identified by the state […]

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November 30, 2018

Comments Off on Secrecy surrounds incentives info for Amazon HQ2 search, other S.C. projects

Secrecy surrounds incentives info for Amazon HQ2 search, other S.C. projects

By RICK BRUNDRETT The S.C. Department of Commerce says it didn’t formally offer any taxpayer-backed incentives to lure Amazon’s second national headquarters to the Palmetto State, but instead provided general incentives information to counties if any of them wanted to compete for the project. Commerce spokeswoman Adrienne Fairwell told The Nerve on Tuesday she didn’t […]

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November 16, 2018

Comments Off on SCDOT honored by national group that received over $3M from DOT since FY15

SCDOT honored by national group that received over $3M from DOT since FY15

By RICK BRUNDRETT S.C. Department of Transportation chief Christy Hall was in a bragging mood at last month’s DOT Commission meeting, announcing that the agency had won three “President’s Transportation Awards” from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. “I’m proud to announce that once again – once again – the South Carolina […]

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