Tag Archives: Department of Parks Recreation and Tourism

As South Carolinians’ income shrinks, state agency surpluses grow

September 3, 2020

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By RICK BRUNDRETT The S.C. Department of Commerce started fiscal 2021 with a $103.1 million general-fund surplus – more than double its reserves from a year ago. The S.C. House of Representatives had a $23.7 million surplus as of July 1 for its 124-member chamber – nearly $1 million more than its entire budget, records […]

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Tourism advertising funds, manufacturer incentives sought in covid’s wake

June 5, 2020

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Spending more tax dollars on tourism advertising and incentives for manufacturers are among proposals to jump-start South Carolina’s economy, which took a severe blow with government-imposed shutdowns following the coronavirus outbreak. The recommendation for increased tourism advertising is contained in a final report released last week by “accelerateSC,” an advisory committee created […]

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Lawmakers continue to push their pet projects – at taxpayer expense

March 10, 2020

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By RICK BRUNDRETT In debating next fiscal year’s state budget, House members could decide this week whether to funnel $23 million through the state’s tourism department and nearly $2 million through the S.C. State Museum for projects or programs that neither agency formally requested, records show. Most of those funding requests are included on an […]

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SCPRT secretive about renters at Governor’s Mansion complex

December 20, 2019

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Since Henry McMaster became governor in 2017, the state’s tourism agency has received more than $675,000 from renting the historic Lace House at the Governor’s Mansion complex in downtown Columbia, records show. But the S.C. Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism (SCPRT)  ) – whose director, Duane Parrish, is a member of […]

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Plenty of pork in proposed state agency budgets for 2020-21

November 22, 2019

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By RICK BRUNDRETT With $1.8 billion more in projected general funds in the state budget for next fiscal year, state agencies are hoping to fulfill their growing wish lists. Their taxpayer-funded requests collectively include millions for such things as promoting private sporting events, businesses and products, along with potentially generous handouts to select companies. Consider […]

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State agencies sitting on big reserves; lawmakers returning little to taxpayers

September 11, 2019

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By RICK BRUNDRETT If the S.C. House of Representatives decided to forgo its entire $22.7 million budget this fiscal year, it could still pay all of its expected bills – with more than $650,000 left over. That’s because the 124-member chamber carried over nearly $23.4 million in general funds into this fiscal year for its […]

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Southern 500 in Darlington racing with plenty of tax dollars

August 30, 2019

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By RICK BRUNDRETT The thousands of fans who are expected to attend the Bojangles’ Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway on Sunday aren’t the only folks supporting the annual NASCAR race. For years, taxpayers have subsidized the private stock-car racetrack dubbed “The Track Too Tough to Tame.” State comptroller general records, for example, show that the […]

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Taxpayer tab for Volvo deal far bigger than public pronouncements

June 29, 2019

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By RICK BRUNDRETT When S.C. officials announced in 2015 that Volvo would locate its first U.S. plant in rural Berkeley County, the total incentives offered to the Swedish car maker were pegged at about $200 million. An investigation by The Nerve, however, found more than $250 million in incentives spent or offered so far by […]

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Panthers’ summer camp got $150K through state sports marketing program

May 19, 2019

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By RICK BRUNDRETT In 2015 and 2016, S.C. lawmakers approved spending a total of nearly $4 million for a “Sports Development Marketing Program,” $150,000 of which was used for the Carolina Panthers’ summer training camp, records released Friday to The Nerve show. In an email response, Dawn Dawson-House, spokeswoman for the S.C. Department of Parks, […]

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Proviso pork spending: A longstanding legislative tradition

April 27, 2019

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By RICK BRUNDRETT As S.C. lawmakers head into the final weeks of adopting an approximately $30 billion state budget for next fiscal year, their taxpayer-funded goody bag keeps growing bigger. For years, lawmakers have slipped in funding requests – often for their own pet projects – through obscure state budget provisos. The latest budget cycle […]

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