Tag Archives: Senate Ethics Committee

Lawmakers routinely tap campaign funds for ‘other’ expenses

August 27, 2020

1 Comment

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 […]

Continue reading...

Lawmakers making the green after getting green light from ethics panel

December 13, 2019

0 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT Almost three years ago, the state House Ethics Committee quietly gave written approval to an unnamed House member who is an insurance agent to sell insurance policies to local disability boards and county hospitals. The Jan. 25, 2017, “advisory opinion” also said the lawmaker didn’t have to abstain on voting on any […]

Continue reading...

S.C. lawmakers spending campaign funds on favorite charities, other ‘gifts’

November 13, 2019

1 Comment

state house

By RICK BRUNDRETT During this year’s legislative session, S.C. Sen. Hugh Leatherman spent a total of $14,769 for constituent “gifts” through ChemArt, a Rhode Island-based ornament company, plus another collective $1,364 for constituent meals at the upscale Palmetto Club near the State House – all paid for with campaign funds, records show. The Florence County […]

Continue reading...

S.C. lawmakers paying for trips to Egypt, other countries with campaign funds

November 8, 2019

3 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT As many as 17 S.C. lawmakers traveled to Egypt last month, most of whom paid their way with campaign funds, State Ethics Commission records show. Two legislators who used campaign money for the trip – Reps. Todd Rutherford, D-Richland, and John King, D-York – also tapped their campaign accounts for costs related […]

Continue reading...

Landing on easy street: Sen. Campbell’s airport contract offers generous pay, perks

July 31, 2019

0 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT Longtime state Sen. Paul Campbell gets plenty of perks as the Charleston International Airport director – on top of his growing six-figure salary, according to his current contract released last week to The Nerve. He can get reimbursed, for example, for “reasonable entertainment expenses,” and receives a $1,000 monthly car allowance. Under […]

Continue reading...

How S.C. lawmakers try to intimidate citizens and groups they don’t like

February 8, 2019

0 Comments

state house

By RICK BRUNDRETT For years, S.C. lawmakers have repeatedly tried through legislation and other means to intimidate citizens who run for legislative seats, raise ethical questions about legislators’ official or campaign activities, or criticize their positions on issues. And lawmakers show no signs of letting up – at least not in this legislative session. The […]

Continue reading...

Senators continue tradition of keeping magistrates on short leashes

February 5, 2019

0 Comments

south carolina judicial department, judiciary

By RICK BRUNDRETT In South Carolina, state senators largely control the selection of more than 300 county magistrates, who handle thousands of relatively minor criminal and civil cases annually. That power is amplified when magistrates finish their terms without being reappointed, a period known as “holdover” status in which they can serve indefinitely – and […]

Continue reading...

S.C. lawmakers treated to out-of-state conferences on taxpayers’ dime

January 19, 2019

0 Comments

By RICK BRUNDRETT South Carolina taxpayers last fiscal year shelled out more than $50,000 to send 27 lawmakers to “educational” conferences across the country, travel records reviewed by The Nerve show. Most of those lawmakers who took trips in 2017 didn’t specify the reimbursed expenses on their latest annual income-disclosure reports, The Nerve’s review found […]

Continue reading...