• New revenue source would bolster ethics investigations

    Larissa Johnson
    Carolina Reporter

    Lobbyists fill the second-floor lobby of the State House while the S.C. legislature is in session.
    Relationships between legislators and lobbyists, especially when money is involved, is a key focus of the State Ethics Commission.
    The commission, responsible for enforcing ethics laws for more than 24,000 elected officials and candidates, has been without a lawyer since October, a vacancy that could hamper enforcement of ethical-conduct laws.

  • Democrat Smith stumps in IL

    At his first campaign stop in Lancaster County, Democratic gubernatorial candidate James Smith introduced himself to about 100 attendees Thursday night with a story about 9/11.
    “We all remember where we were on that day,” said Smith, an 11-term S.C. House member from Columbia. “I had the chance to visit Ground Zero, and it just assaulted all the senses, sight and sound.”

    While he was there, crews removed a victim’s body from the rubble.

  • Kershaw town council denies $25K KCPC request

    KERSHAW – The Kershaw Community Park Council on Monday asked the town council for $25,000 to secure an equal grant for the playground-replacement project at Stevens Park, but the council turned down the request.
    The $25,000 would have won KCPC a matching amount from the J. Marion Sims Foundation, a big step toward the community group’s $375,000 goal.
    “We just don’t have it,” Kershaw Mayor Mark Dorman told anxious KCPC board members after council discussed the matter behind closed doors for more than an hour.

  • Morrow lone candidate in Heath Springs race

    Tameka Morrow, a teacher at North Elementary School, is running unopposed in the race for the open seat on Heath Springs Town Council.
    “Everyone has a voice, but I’d like to put the voice of the younger generation – the generation of the offspring of the retirees,” Morrow said. “It’s time for a younger generation to come in, and I would like to put a fresh face on council.”

  • Quinn Jr. gets fine, probation, no prison

    Former House Majority Leader Richard Quinn Jr. has been sentenced to two years’ probation after pleading guilty to misconduct in office.
    Circuit Judge Carmen Mullen delivered the sentence 9 a.m. Monday at a hearing in Beaufort. In addition to probation, Mullen sentenced Quinn to 500 hours of community service and a $1,000 fine.
    Special Prosecutor David Pascoe, who argued for Quinn to receive the maximum sentence of one year in prison, objected to Mullen’s sentencing, but the judge didn’t let him get far.  

  • Filing ends Monday for Heath Springs council

    Noon on Monday is the deadline for individuals to file as candidates for the upcoming Heath Springs Town Council special election.
    A special election will be held April 17 to fill the unexpired two-year council term of Eddie Moore, who was elected as Heath Springs mayor last November. The at-large nonpartisan council seat became vacant in January after Moore was sworn in as mayor.

    To file, candidates must be a resident of Heath Springs and must be a legal resident of the town 30 days prior to the election.

  • Rick Quinn Jr. to be sentenced in corruption case

    Sentencing is expected Monday for former House Majority Leader Rick Quinn Jr., who pleaded guilty to corruption charges in December as the result of the State House corruption probe.
    Circuit Judge Carmen Mullen is expected to take up the case during a hearing in Beaufort at 9:30 a.m., according to the Charleston Post and Courier.

  • Glitch causes $1M tax shortfall

    An unexplained computer glitch caused 24 Indian Land industrial properties to receive no county property tax bills, throwing off incoming tax revenues by more than $1 million and sending officials scrambling for answers.

  • House votes to protect SCE&G ratepayers

    COLUMBIA – The S.C. House has temporarily pulled the plug on the $37 million that SCANA gets each month for two nuclear reactors that will never generate the first kilowatt of electricity.
    On Wednesday, the House voted 119-1 to drop the $27 per month fee that SCE&G electric customers are paying for a now-abandoned reactor project at V.C. Summer Nuclear Generating Station in Fairfield County. SCANA is the parent company of SCE&G.
    Rep. Brandon Newton (R-Lancaster) said it was time for the legislature to take a stand on behalf of beleaguered ratepayers.

  • Rep. Gowdy won’t seek reelection

    Trey Gowdy, who led the Benghazi investigation in the U.S. House that uncovered Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server, is getting out of politics.
    “There is a time to come and a time to go,” Gowdy wrote Wednesday on Twitter, announcing that he would not run for reelection this year. “This is the right time, for me, to leave politics and return to the justice system.”