Tag Archives: Gov. Henry McMaster

Gallo Winery project: No cheap buzz for SC taxpayers

August 27, 2021

0 Comments

  By RICK BRUNDRETT E.&J. Gallo Winery, a multibillion-dollar global corporation, will get at least $25 million in assistance from the state of South Carolina to locate a plant in Chester County – plus could receive tens of millions more in taxpayer-backed incentives over decades, records released to The Nerve show. And the California-based wine […]

Continue reading...

State surpluses keep growing. Taxpayers likely won’t get any of it back

August 25, 2021

0 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT Lawmakers have far more state tax dollars to play with this fiscal year, though there has been no serious interest in returning any of it to taxpayers. In an annual report released earlier this month, S.C. comptroller general Richard Eckstrom – the state’s top accountant – said the state had a $1.024 […]

Continue reading...

Lawmaker: Little vetting of governor’s pick for DOT Commission

August 3, 2021

0 Comments

SCDOT

By RICK BRUNDRETT Gov. Henry McMaster quietly appointed the owner of a well-known Columbia restaurant – and generous campaign donor – to a vacant state Department of Transportation Commission seat, but a lawmaker is questioning the selection process. The 2nd Congressional District Legislative Delegation is scheduled this morning to vote whether to confirm McMaster’s appointment […]

Continue reading...

Some state agency heads start new fiscal year with big pay raises

July 7, 2021

0 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT A legislatively controlled committee has given five-figure pay hikes to a group of state agency heads, and a new law empowers the panel to recommend raises next fiscal year for certain statewide elected officials. The Agency Head Salary Commission (AHSC) on Thursday– the start of the new fiscal year – approved the […]

Continue reading...

Earmark secrecy continues as state budget goes into effect

June 30, 2021

0 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT In vetoing 226 budget earmarks totaling $152.5 million, Gov. Henry McMaster last week wrote that the “bulk of these earmarked appropriations still lack sufficient context, description, explanation of merit, or justification as to how the recipient intends to spend the funds.” That might be one of the biggest understatements on how lawmakers […]

Continue reading...

Lawmakers approve massive state budget stuffed with pork projects

June 22, 2021

0 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT Lawmakers on Monday sent a strong message in adopting a state budget for the fiscal year that starts next week. Let the spending party begin – with your tax dollars. The Legislature overwhelmingly approved a $32.3 billion total budget for fiscal 2022, which includes state, federal and “other” funds, budget records show. […]

Continue reading...

Santee Cooper board still has expired, vacant seats despite ‘reform’ law

June 18, 2021

0 Comments

Santee Cooper

By RICK BRUNDRETT Of the 12 seats on the board governing state-owned utility Santee Cooper, two are vacant while seven members are serving past their expired terms. A new law that purportedly will reform Santee Cooper – pushed by lawmakers after they couldn’t decide to sell the debt-burdened utility – doesn’t change the selection process […]

Continue reading...

Lawmakers bypassing normal budget process to spend $600M settlement

June 16, 2021

0 Comments

Gavel on Money

By RICK BRUNDRETT Proceeds from a $600 million settlement with the federal government over plutonium storage in South Carolina weren’t included in any state budget versions crafted by lawmakers for the upcoming fiscal year. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t planning to spend the massive windfall. Last month, a joint resolution was quietly introduced in […]

Continue reading...

House poised to spend millions more on pork projects

June 8, 2021

0 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT The S.C. House this week could pass a revised version of the fiscal 2022 state budget, which includes $1.8 billion in “new” state funding. But the total $32.1 billion budget version passed last week by the House Ways and Means Committee doesn’t authorize any refunds to state taxpayers. Budget writers, however, designated […]

Continue reading...

Taxpayers on hook for road- and bridge-naming legislation

May 14, 2021

0 Comments

SC Statehouse

BY RICK BRUNDRETT S.C. lawmakers routinely approve naming road sections and bridges for living or deceased persons, including ex-legislators and other former public officials. Not only does it take up a lot of collective time that could be spent working on larger, more pressing issues, but it also comes with a cost to taxpayers – […]

Continue reading...