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Today's Opinions

  • 12 S.C. school districts spend $87,000 on trip

    School districts across South Carolina spent more than $87,000 last April to send board members to a three-day conference in San Francisco.
    Board members from at least 12 different districts used public money to attend the three-day long National School Boards Association (NSBA) Annual Conference in California.
    Several brought spouses with them. Expenses included airline tickets, lodging, conference registration, meals, ground transportation and, in some cases, unitemized daily per-diem checks for the three-day event.

  • South Carolina needs CPAs in its government accounting positions

    As a certified public accountant (CPA) for a major international public accounting firm in the 1980s, I wrote a proposal to audit the state’s books for the first time ever.
    The proposal was accepted, and I assembled a team of CPAs to accomplish this colossal task.
    Needless to say, this experience gave me unique insights into state finances.
    One of those insights is that there are far too few professional accountants working in the accounting departments of government agencies.

  • Don’t let heat ruin summer for you

    We really don’t need the temperature, heat index and ozone forecast to tell us it’s hot. All we have to do is step outside and get slapped with heat and humidity.
    Weather forecasters could just hit rewind each morning for the next couple of months. But that is to be expected because it is summer – the time of the year that allows us to do so much of what we love to do outdoors – play ball, swim, camp, cook out and much, much more.

  • Are we losing our place in the world?

    Do you feel the massive earthquake that is shaking up the Middle East? According to the Washington Post, the U.S. relationship with Saudi Arabia is at an all-time low.
    There is an increasing friction with the Obama administration and the Saudi government feels that America has proven to be an incompetent ally, incapable of conducting a coherent foreign policy.
    Did Obama make a mistake in driving Mubarak out of Egypt? Now Egypt is headed down a path to an Islamic fundamentalist takeover.

  • Be safe, have fun on Fourth of July

    The United States of America will celebrate its 235th birthday on the Fourth of July. And since Independence Day falls on a Monday this year, most of us will have a long weekend to enjoy the federal holiday.
    The midsummer holiday commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring America’s independence from Great Britain.
    It is a day of celebration, from the backyard to the pool, river or beach. Popular forms of celebration and observance include picnics, parades, cookouts, concerts, baseball games and family reunions.

  • Judicial halls give a glimpse of past, future

    You would figure, as sure as Lancaster County sports a new courthouse with its recent grand opening, I could provide stories aplenty of the old courthouse next door.
    I say that being a lifelong county resident, and even more since my father, the late Jim Howey Sr., was a Lancaster defense attorney who had more than his share of cases in the old building. Toss in the fact that he served some 16 years as the county’s probate judge, and I would probably have enough to write a book.

  • Blackmon-Brace to share her business acumen

    As a woman, I know only too well how few tributes are made to women in our mostly male-oriented business arena.
    I learned recently that a local, female, public servant, whom I personally respect for her many years of service in our communities, was offered an opportunity that most women can only dream of.
    A group of professional women from Myrtle Beach, aptly named Phenomenal Women, requested this phenomenal woman, out of many candidates, to honor them by speaking at a seminar that extols the business acumen of women in a male-dominated arena.

  • Literacy Council appreciates support

    The 10th Annual Family Literacy Fair was a success again this year thanks to the agencies that participated and the community members who came out to enjoy the event.  
    On behalf of the Lancaster County Literacy Council, Lancaster County Library and BEST AmeriCorps, I would like to thank the following local businesses for making it possible for this family friendly event to remain free to everyone:  Sonic, SnoBiz, CarQuest and Food Lion.