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Columns

  • With legislature ending, lawmakers consider cuts

    After six months of meaningless resolutions, behind-the-scenes negotiations with lobbyists, lengthy “debates” over bills that don’t matter to anyone, and early adjournments to attend receptions hosted by multibillion-dollar corporations, lawmakers have finally noticed that the state budget contains things that shouldn’t be in the state budget.

  • Tax paying now more convenient

    In the Lancaster County Treasurer’s Office, we pride ourselves on providing quality customer service. While no one enjoys paying taxes, one of our top priorities is to make paying your taxes simple and easy.

  • Roads, ethics, more top legislative agenda

    As the S.C. General Assembly approaches the end of the first year of the two-year session, much remains to be done. Finding additional funding for our roads, overhauling ethics laws and strengthening penalties for criminal domestic violence are the issues receiving the most attention.

    To date, though, resolution has yet to be reached on any. What follows will bring you up to speed on those issues as well as some others legislators are debating this year.

    Roads, roads, roads

  • Noble column: Fix higher education so grads can dream big

    Back many years ago when I graduated from high school, my father made me a promise that changed my life and we should make the same promise to all of our children in South Carolina.
    As a callow youth with my brand-spanking-new diploma in hand, I was simply excited about graduating and looking forward to celebrating with my friends. But before things got too far out of hand, my father pulled me aside, looked me straight in the eye and made me a serious and solemn promise.

  • Wilt column: Revised budget better, but it still has problems

    The fiscal year 2015-16 Lancaster County budget version 6 (second reading) has been finalized with a 1.8 mill tax increase, using $1.3 million from the fund balance to cover what would ordinarily be a 4.6 mill additional tax increase. This allows council to claim that taxes have not been raised the maximum amount (2.8 mills), while actually spending 6.4 mills worth of tax money (228 percent of the maximum tax increase). More to the point, it camouflages County Council’s serious difficulty in living within its means.

  • Schmidt column: Real threat is the truth

    The real threat to America is not from some terrorists, it is from the truth. When truth is told,  people die.
    Liberals do not view Muslims as real people with real beliefs and culture. They are viewed as the loser victims in a game of power. These are the lies about Islam and Muslims the liberals accept.

  • Blackmon column: Help save young black men through prayer

    God, through his anointing and answering of prayers, has put a mandate in my heart.
    On May 23, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., there will be a Young Black Men Prayer Banquet (YBMPB) at Preston Blackmon’s Park, formerly Southside Park. We will pray for two hours.

  • Noble column: Great disparity in kids’ well-being across state

    On Sunday, May 17, in this space, we reported on the annual Kids Count study on the status of children in the country and for each of the 50 states. For our kids in South Carolina, the results were not good, as we as a state had slipped two places in the rankings.
    Last year, South Carolina ranked 45th of the 50 states in the well-being of our children, the same place as in 2013, but down two places from 2012, when we ranked 43rd.
    We are gaining speed in the wrong direction.

  • Noble column: S.C. kids doing worse (Part 1)

    I have written this column before. In fact, I’ve written this same basic column about this time every year for the past several years.
    And I’ll write it again next year, and every year for as long as I do this column because it’s so important. It’s about how well the children of South Carolina are doing. The answer in a word is – worse.

  • Wexler column: Needed: Sunlight on trade deals

    Sunlight is sorely needed in our nation’s capital as Congress considers an expedited process for approving trade agreements that are being done largely in secret. For the past several years, representatives of our government have been negotiating trade deals with Pacific Rim nations and the European Union behind closed doors, pacts that will affect every American family and worker.
    The only people privy to inside information about the trade talks have been 566 trade advisers, the overwhelming majority of whom represent corporate interests.