Tag Archives: Hugh Leatherman

House targets budget law for repeal; other old laws remain untouched

March 5, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT In South Carolina, it’s still illegal to challenge someone to a duel with a sword, pistol or other deadly weapon. Other laws on the books that date to the last century or earlier ban such things as, for example: Robbing a train after stopping it; Swindling in card or dice games; Committing […]

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Gas-tax-hike surplus expands by $250M in one year while road projects lag

March 3, 2021

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By RICK BRUNDRETT In just one year, the surplus from state gas-tax-hike revenues grew by more than a quarter of a billion dollars, or 50%, to $752 million as of Jan. 31, records show. The Nerve repeatedly has pointed out the growing reserve that the S.C. Department of Transportation has been sitting on since the […]

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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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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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No big gains over the summer in fixing SC’s bad roads

October 20, 2020

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By RICK BRUNDRETT In theory, the pace of fixing South Carolina’s pothole-riddled roads should have increased over the hot summer months. The reality, however, was different. The Nerve’s review of newly released S.C. Department of Transportation records found that through September, the total dollar value of completed “pavements” projects statewide was less than half of […]

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$20M in COVID-19 funds earmarked for tourism marketing

October 9, 2020

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Gov. Henry McMaster plans to spend $20 million in state surplus money in response to the coronavirus outbreak in South Carolina, but it’s not for more testing, treatment or protective gear such as face masks. Instead, those funds will be spent on tourism marketing – most of it going to five tourism […]

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Gas-tax-hike projects: Main contractors doing other SC jobs

September 30, 2020

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By RICK BRUNDRETT The slow pace of fixing South Carolina’s bad roads and bridges since the state gas tax was hiked more than three years ago could be tied in part to who’s doing the work and what other projects those companies are handling, records show. The 10 highest-paid road contractors with gas-tax-hike revenues from […]

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SC motorists paying more taxes at the pump, still seeing slow results

September 9, 2020

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Motorists in South Carolina are now paying 8 cents more per gallon since the state gas-tax-hike law took effect in July 2017 – and will face another collective 4-cent increase over the next two years. But repairs to the state’s pothole-riddled roads still have been moving at a slow pace. Newly released […]

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Lawmakers routinely tap campaign funds for ‘other’ expenses

August 27, 2020

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By RICK BRUNDRETT Politicians typically spend campaign funds on things like signs, billboards, TV, radio or internet advertising. But S.C. lawmakers often use their campaign money for other expenses, including out-of-state trips, donations to their favorite charities, membership dues, or gifts to their staffs and constituents. And it’s all legal – at least according to […]

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