THANK YOU BILL CHUMLEY – the only Spartanburg Representative to vote NO on this tax increase!!!
Those who voted to increase your taxes without an audit of the SCDOT and amid questions of mismanagement at best: Rita Allison, Doug Brannon, Derham Cole, Mike Forrester, Donna Hicks, Eddie Tallon (but hey! at least the CHAMBER told them it was a good vote!)
According to the South Carolina Republican Party platform, â€śThe Party calls on the General Assembly to significantly reduce the income tax burden on our economy and our taxpayersâ€ť and â€ścalls on our Statehouse and Congressional delegations to stand firm in opposing new tax increases … .â€ť
All six S.C. House members from the Spartanburg delegation recently voted for a 63 percent state gasoline tax increase, estimated at an additional $400 million in revenue per year, to repair South Carolinaâ€™s abysmal roads. But what has the state of South Carolina done with its previous annual budget surpluses of more than $250 million in previous years?
According to articles from the S.C. Policy Council in 2013, the S.C. Department of Transportation spent 33 percent of its State Transportation Infrastructure Bank money on Charleston County alone, and 95 percent of the STIB funds were spent exclusively on six counties, while 35 counties received none.
South Carolina already has the fourth largest highway system in the USA, yet we are only 40th in size and 24th in population. Nothing has been done to significantly reform the SCDOT or the State Transportation Infrastructure Bank.
Gov. Nikki Haley said in her State of the State address last year, while campaigning for re-election, that we didnâ€™t need to raise taxes to fix the roads. If you vote to re-elect these incumbents, regardless of party affiliation, you are part of the problem.
Want to hear what the candidates and potential candidates are saying? CLICK BELOW for the videos from this weekend’s event.
Brian Adams with a guest blog. Brian is a certified search and rescue volunteer, who has taken many classes, participated in numerous real life search and rescue efforts in SC and NC, and is also an instructor.
The South Carolina Senate Judiciary Committee is currently considering Bill S498 designed to prevent unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVâ€™s) from being flown over private property and being used by law enforcement agencies without warrant.
Protecting privacy of individuals is an admirable goal â€“ however the law has the unintended consequence of criminalizing the use of UAVâ€™s by Search and Rescue (SAR) Teams.
UAVâ€™s are a recent addition to the tools that searchers have to locate and rescue missing persons. UAVâ€™s offer a number of unique benefits to the SAR community:
Force Multiplier â€“ Rapidly searching large areas of land with only two people (UAV operator and spotter)
Safety â€“ Ability to search potentially dangerous or inaccessible areas from the air
Lower Cost â€“ An UAV is much more economical to use than other air assets such as helicopters or fixed winged aircraft
Unique Capabilities â€“ Use of infra-red (IR) or thermal cameras from the air provide a search technique that is not always practical from the ground
Rapid Delivery of Emergency Survival Gear â€“ New UAVâ€™s are being developed that will allow rescue teams to drop critical emergency supplies to subjects that cannot be reached immediately due to terrain, weather or darkness
Failure by the Senate to include an exemption for Search and Rescue use of UAVâ€™s will hamper future search efforts and may result in the needless loss of life.
Contact your SC state senators and let them know that a Search and Rescue exemption must be added to Bill S 498.
A note from Janet Spencer on her visit to Trey Gowdy’s office:
When you are an activist, you get to know many different groups and individuals. Several of us that volunteer with FreedomWorks have been visiting local congressmen’s offices.
Several weeks ago we visited Rep. Tom Rice’s office in Horry County to discuss the EX-IM Bank reauthoriation act.
On Monday I contacted several individuals in the Spartanburg area and ask if they would join us at Rep. Trey Gowdy’s Spartanburg office to discuss the Patriot Act.
Evan Mulch, Carole Martin, Neil Martin, Doug Cobb, Nicole Cobb, Artie Brito, John Fowler, William T Clark and Robert Merting from Spartanburg joined us. We had a great discussion and expressed our concerns with Gowdy’s staff.
The only individual I personally knew was Evan Mulch, and was so pleased to have 8 more individuals to join us. This just goes to show that different parts of the state(from the coast to the upstate) can work together to better our state and country. I look forward to working with my new friends in the future.
Below are some Quick Facts on Surveillance Reform – Patriot Act
â€˘ Government whistleblowers have proven that the NSA and other government agencies have been collecting massive quantities of information on millions of Americans without a specific warrant and for many years.
â€˘ The USA PATRIOT Act passed in the wake of 9/11 has been one of the big tools the government has used to justify this mass surveillance.
â€˘ Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act is set to expire on June 1, and a bill to reauthorize it is set to come up for a vote by the end of April.
o Section 215 is being used to justify the mass collection of Americansâ€™ telephone
ď‚§ This data (what numbers youâ€™ve called, for how long, possibly from where and to where the calls were placed, etc.) can be used to construct a stunningly detailed narrative about you
â€˘ The bill to reauthorize Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act should be an opportunity to restore constitutional limits on the governmentâ€™s spying.
We would like to see the entire Patriot Act eliminated, but at the least Section 215 should not be reauthorized.
Calvin is running for Duncan City Council and recently gathered enough signatures to get on the ballot!
For those of you who knew I had 2 Â˝ days to gather 84 signatures to get on the ballot for Duncan Town Council I just wanted to let you know that I did squeak in. Out of the 129 gathered 89 were valid signatures. I do have an opponent and the election will be on June 9, 2015.
From: Spartanburg County Republican Party
You will not want to miss this exciting opportunity! We hope you will join us as we welcome former US Senator and Potential Presidential Candidate Rick Santorum to Spartanburg.
Palladian View Bridging the Gap Event
Former Senator Rick Santorum visits Spartanburg County
The Spartanburg County Republican Party will be hosting a breakfast reception for Rick Santorum on Tuesday, May 5th beginning at 9:00am. Palladian View’s “Bridging the Gap” Quarterly Leadership Series will be held immediately following the breakfast. All events will be held in the auditorium of Spartanburg Community College’s downtown campus.
Breakfast hosted by the Spartanburg County Republican Party
Media Rountable with WYFF-TV4, Fox Carolina, Spartanburg Herald Journal, WSPA-TV7, Spartanburg Chamber CEO and SC Representative Rita Allison. Moderated by Former Chair of the SCGOP, Karen Floyd.
Public is invited
Entrance to the event is free.
Sponsorships available for the Spartanburg GOP Breakfast.
Those interested in Sponsorships can contact Bill Conley at firstname.lastname@example.org or Alexia Newman at email@example.com.
The drumbeat for a state gas tax hike is deafening. The S.C. Chamber of Commerce and the Manufacturersâ€™ Alliance support it. So does the state trucking association. Editorials appear almost daily across the state in endorsement.
This level of consensus should send chills down the spines of concerned citizens and taxpayers, especially when the rationale for the tax hike is both specious and deceptive.
No one can dispute the poor condition of our road system. But the proposition that things will improve by imposing one of the largest tax increases in state history is demonstrably wrong. Letâ€™s count the reasons.
To begin with, the S.C. Department of Transportation (DOT) has wildly inflated its financial needs. When asked to calculate the funding â€śbacklogâ€ť necessary to bring the system up to standard, the department delivered the figure of $1.5 billion a year over 30 years, for a total of $42 billion. Road advocates have adopted this staggering amount â€” almost $10,000 for every man, woman and child in South Carolina â€” as the battle cry for their campaign. Virtually no one has bothered to question publicly what, actually, is included in this number.
The number includes, as it turns out, just about everything. To reach $42 billion, the DOT threw in every boondoggle project conceived in every county in the state, including, but not limited to, the $2.4 billion Interstate 73 project from Rockingham to Conway, the $600 million extension of I-526 to rural Johns Island, and the four-laning of S.C. 51 from Florence to Pamplico (more about this shortly).
The DOT project list is, simply, the mother of all slush funds. Besides padding the books on the amount of money they need, for the past quarter century the DOT and its covert and unruly twin, the S.C. State Transportation Infrastructure Bank (STIB), have failed to spend the considerable resources they already receive on projects that address true state needs. (The DOT budget is now about $1.3 billion annually and the STIB has directed more than $4 billion to projects over its 20-year life). Instead, weâ€™ve gotten bridges to nowhere and miles of massacred trees in interstate medians.
There is a reason for this. It is called politics.
Last week, the House debated a series of amendments that would curb these abuses. It overwhelmingly rejected every single one. Notably, the biggest loser â€” by a margin of more than 2-1 â€” was an amendment by Rep. Ralph Norman, R-York, requiring the STIB to prioritize its projects, using the same standards the DOT uses, in contrast to none, which is currently the case. The only amendment that passed was one to add $25 million to a pot of money available for rural areas, from which funding would be exempt from any ranking standards.
Read more at the link above. You and I MUST understand the math behind all the cries of WE MUST DO THIS!!! by our legislators. Six Spartanburg House members voted FOR this recently. Did you ask them why they voted yes? Each of them? And were any of them able to give you an answer that didn’t quote “The Chamber” or some VERY large business like Sunoco?
Did you ask them about the $42 Billion dollar figure? Can they explain those projects to you?
That’s an awful lot of “yes” votes from Spartanburg.
Come hear Rafael Cruz, father of US Senator and Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz (R-TX) in Spartanburg County!
Rafael Cruz was born in Cuba, where he grew up suffering under the countyâ€™s oppressive dictator. As a teenager, he took up arms against Batistaâ€™s regime, and was subsequently imprisoned and tortured simply because he wanted to be free.
Rafael arrived in Texas in 1957 on a student visa, with nothing but the clothes on his back and one hundred dollars sewn into his underwear. He got a job as a dishwasher making 50 cents an hour, and worked his way through the University of Texas while learning English. He later built a small business.
Rafael Cruz became active in conservative politics during Ronald Reaganâ€™s 1980 presidential campaign. Today, he is an ordained minister, a professor of Bible and Theology, and the Director of Grace for America. Rafael is a sought-after speaker for GOP Reagan and Lincoln dinners across the country, was a keynote speaker in over 50 pastors conferences in 2014, and highlighted several Republican women events. He is passionate about returning America to the biblical, Constitutional and historical foundations that made this country exceptional.
For more information, contact Michelle Wiles at
From Alan Clemmons FB page:
Please join me in saying thank you to the 90 members of the South Carolina House of Representatives who today, by a vote of 90 to 18, gave second reading to the Clemmons, Yow, Hixon South Carolina Second Amendment Empowerment Act (H3025), with an amendment by Rep Mike Pitts and myself to authorize permitless concealed carry by every South Carolinian who can legally purchase a handgun! The bill, as now amended, allows SC CWP holders to carry in 27 states (instead of the current 20) Including GA and opens the door to recognizing every state’s CWP. Additionally, the amendment authorizes every law abiding South Carolinian who can legally purchase a firearm, to carry it concealed without a permit! The bill awaits third reading in the House next Tuesday and then passes to the Senate for consideration. Thank you to every member of the SC House who supports the Second Amendment!
NOW CALL YOUR SENATORS!!!!!!!!
Justin had a short quote in today’s SHJ article, but I’m not certain it accurately captured his views on this issue, he’s been working on this for quite a while. Below is Justin’s full statement from his website:
Due to an incorrect paraphrase of my stance in recent article about the refugee settlement, I want to be sure you hear directly from me about this issue.
Since the Herald-Journal first reported on this in March, I have spoken with many of my constituents and other concerned citizens in the community, as well as pastors involved in this ministry and our community.
I have had an opportunity to speak with the pastors involved and share their desire to care for those in need. As a teenager, I began going on missions trip to minister to those in need, including in other countries. One of the first issues that I addressed when I was sworn into county council was supporting efforts to protect victims of human trafficking and stop this horrible crime from plaguing our community. My reason for doing this is that my faith drives me to give a voice to those that that do not have the ability to speak out. I understand the heart of the local ministers involved in this project and trust the judgment of many of them that I know personally. I am not in any way attacking their desire to minister to these individuals physically and spiritually and hope that they are successful in sharing the gospel with anyone who needs to the hear the good news.
Since the refugee settlement efforts in Spartanburg were first reported in March, I began asking questions about the program. I also reached out directly to the organization World Relief, who informed me that I was the first elected official to do so. Because there was very little information, I wanted to make sure that I understood the implications of this for our community. After looking at the legal requirements, I realized that Spartanburg Countyâ€™s role in this process was limited, since this is an issue of federal and state law and benefits. I determined that I would continue to seek additional information for my constituents and to answer my questions and concerns about the program so that we could evaluate this proposal as a community.
My concerns are primarily in 2 areas:
1. Like many of you, I am concerned about the our current immigration system and the recent issues of terrorism posed by groups like ISIS who are taking terrible actions against Christians overseas and have targeted our homeland. Has homeland security and the state taken appropriate steps to review individuals that are coming into our community? Have they consulted with local law enforcement to provide this information to them?
2. In addition to the security concerns, I also have issues with our immigration system generally that too often results in downward assimilation of individuals who immigrate into our country into a cycle of government dependence over upward mobility and opportunity. I am also concerned about whether these individuals, if they are using government services, will be a burden on our local governments and agencies who are already trying to manage limited resources for our residents.
When Congressman Gowdy sent a letter earlier this month to Secretary of State John Kerry to ask for additional information about the program and seek detailed answers, I wrote to Congressman Gowdy to ask that he share any information that he obtains on the federal level with our county council and our community. I also joined Congressman Gowdy in requesting that the proposal be placed on hold while we have a chance to receive more information. I also reached our to my local state representative to ask for sharing of any information they obtain from the Governorâ€™s office. To date, I have not received any new information from the state or federal government. Pastor Jason Lee with World Relief has graciously spoken with me on a couple of occasions to answer my questions directly and provided the information that he can share, but he also pointed out the the nature of the work they are doing through DSS prevents the non-profit organization itself from sharing some of the information specific to these individuals.
Because the Governorâ€™s office and DSS, as well as federal authorities, have been involved in this process for many months, I wish they had consulted with local officials and the community about this process from the beginning so we could have an open and honest discussion about the concerns and the plan that can only be addressed by the state and federal government.
I will continue to seek more information about the refugee resettlement plans for Spartanburg and share with you as I receive it. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have additional questions.