Tag Archives: featured

Little-known S.C. public railroad pays its executives well

February 24, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT It’s a railroad that most South Carolinians probably never have heard of. The Charleston-based “Palmetto Railways” is classified as a “short line railroad,” which typically runs shorter distances and connects shippers to larger freight railroads. Officially, Palmetto Railways, which was established in 1969, is a division of the S.C. Department of Commerce, […]

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Golden parachute for state attorney general?

February 19, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Longtime state attorney general Alan Wilson could receive bigger retirement paychecks under legislation sponsored by two House leaders who also are lawyers. The bill, sponsored by Reps. Murrell Smith, R-Sumter, who is the House Ways and Means Committee chairman, and Chris Murphy, R-Dorchester, who is the House Judiciary Committee chairman, would allow […]

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Gas tax credit still unpopular, state concedes

February 17, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT An income tax credit that S.C. lawmakers created in 2017 to offset the state gasoline tax hike has been relatively unpopular so far, records show. And state revenue forecasters are now admitting it. After two years of wrongly predicting that taxpayers would claim the maximum-allowed amount of income tax credits, the state […]

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Commerce approves hundreds of large-crowd events amid Covid outbreak

February 12, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Since Gov. Henry McMaster in August gave the state Department of Commerce – which isn’t a public health agency – the authority to allow large-crowd events in South Carolina amid the coronavirus outbreak, the agency has approved more than 1,300 applications, records show. Through Thursday morning, Commerce approved 1,345, or 90%, of […]

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Legislative delegations again exert control over local schools

February 10, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT In another power move by county legislative delegations, a Spartanburg County lawmaker has proposed legislation that would establish base pay for members of a local school board. It’s not the first time in recent years that a county delegation, made up House and Senate members representing that county, has inserted itself into […]

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State court system won’t reveal key details on judicial discipline

February 5, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT For the second time in recent months, the S.C. Judicial Department has sided with secrecy about how the court system operates. In October, the department denied The Nerve’s request under the state Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) for a list of judicial staff making at least $50,000 annually – records which are […]

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A first with the gas-tax-hike law – and it’s little to celebrate

February 3, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT 2020 ended with a first in the 3½ years of the gas-tax-hike law, though many South Carolina motorists probably won’t be happy about it. As of Dec. 31, more revenues were collected under the law, which took effect July 1, 2017, than the total estimated cost of all road and bridge projects […]

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Top lawmakers’ campaign spending didn’t stop with re-election

January 29, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Over the last three months of 2020, the November general election wasn’t the only expense that top S.C. lawmakers covered with campaign funds. The Nerve’s review of the latest campaign-spending reports filed this month by Senate and House leaders found that a number of them spent some of their campaign funds on […]

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Health agency slowly spending Covid money

January 27, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT A state House proposal would send an additional $63 million out of state surplus funds to the Department of Health and Environmental Control to speed up COVID-19 vaccinations and continue testing statewide. But DHEC has spent only about 60% of the $45 million in state surplus funds awarded to the agency last […]

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Plenty of pork in governor’s proposed state spending plan

January 22, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT In touting Gov. Henry McMaster’s proposed fiscal 2022 state budget, his office in a recent news release contended it “significantly invests in the state’s core functions of government” while “maintaining his commitment” to “fiscally responsible practices.” But although emergency spending in response to the coronavirus outbreak in South Carolina likely will continue […]

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