sc_state_house_corruption.jpg

STATE HOUSE CORRUPTION

GOVERNMENT MISMANAGEMENT

We need our state government to provide education, roads, business opportunities, and so on for South Carolina residents. Our tax dollars need to go towards the things that make our lives better and improve the prospects for the state. Even Republicans admit we do not have a revenue problem in Columbia; we have a financial distribution problem. I would add, we also have a management and corruption problem.

“Since 2009, 20 current and former lawmakers reported ties to about $16 million in contracts with state and local government, an analysis by The Post and Courier and the Center for Public Integrity shows.”

The SCANA/Santee Cooper failed nuclear power plant is a prime example of legislative mismanagement. First, our Republican-controlled legislature approved the Base Load Review Act in 2007 which allowed SCANA to charge customers for the reactors before they were finished. The average SCE&G customer pays $27 per month for the failed nuclear reactor construction. Second, legislators failed to provide adequate oversight on Santee Cooper, a state-owned public utility. Our citizens end up paying for this mismanagement and our State is impacted in lost infrastructure.

“South Carolina elected officials and candidates have what amounts to a personal ATM that dispensed nearly $100 million since 2009 for such things as car repairs, football tickets, male-enhancement pills, GoPro cameras, overseas junkets and gasoline.”

LINING THEIR OWN POCKETS

According to the Post & Courier, legislators are using their elected positions “as their personal ATM” and “The money funding this political cash machine comes from candidates' campaign accounts, reimbursements from state government and outright gifts from special interests.” These “ATMs” have “dispensed nearly $100 million since 2009 for such things as car repairs, football tickets, male-enhancement pills, GoPro cameras, overseas junkets and gasoline.”

Legislators also take advantage of the gray area of consulting to supplement their incomes. The Post & Courier reports that “Lawmakers could choose what to disclose beyond the meager requirements. Harrison, longtime chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, listed dozens of his law firm's clients on ethics reports, even those paying him several hundred dollars, while not revealing the $900,000 he earned over 12 years from Quinn that stopped when the Columbia Republican left office in 2012.”

“...despite the most recent ethics reform, state laws remain porous...they must be clarified to eliminate blatant conflicts of interest and the gray areas and loopholes lawmakers employ to circumvent the spirit of ethics laws. And...lawmakers need a full, no-compromise income disclosure law.”

IT’S GOT TO STOP

Republicans have controlled our State legislature since the 1990s. The corruption and mismanagement has gotten out of control on their watch.

I INVITE YOU TO VOTE FOR ETHICAL LEADERSHIP FOR OUR STATE ON JANUARY 16th.

VOTE CINDY BOATWRIGHT FOR STATE HOUSE.


PRESS COVERAGE OF THE STATE HOUSE CORRUPTION

S.C. lawmakers seek to stop SCANA from taking $37M a month from customers for failed nuclear project | Oct 30, 2017

http://www.postandcourier.com/politics/s-c-lawmakers-seek-to-stop-scana-from-taking-m/article_2739a826-bd7f-11e7-b15f-4b5d4cd04125.html

Law provides loophole for South Carolina legislators to be paid for 'consulting' work | Oct 29, 2017

http://www.postandcourier.com/politics/law-provides-loophole-for-south-carolina-legislators-to-be-paid/article_f77b9c3e-ba8b-11e7-a4a5-cfef2b63e5fd.html

S.C. Supreme Court suspends law license of former legislator charged in Statehouse corruption probe | Oct 25, 2017

http://www.postandcourier.com/news/s-c-supreme-court-suspends-law-license-of-former-legislator/article_78ff7860-b9c0-11e7-93c4-87e87139c154.html

Prosecutor: GOP powerbroker Richard Quinn paid $1.3 million to S.C. legislators who helped clients | Oct 24, 2017

http://www.postandcourier.com/news/prosecutor-gop-powerbroker-richard-quinn-paid-million-to-s-c/article_5abc96b6-b831-11e7-84d3-abd08672f994.html

Rep. Jim Merrill pleads guilty to misconduct, agrees to assist investigators in Statehouse corruption probe | Sep 1, 2017

http://www.postandcourier.com/news/rep-jim-merrill-pleads-guilty-to-misconduct-agrees-to-assist/article_8bec18cc-8e85-11e7-9e9d-27efad3582f1.html

Charleston state Rep. Jim Merrill resigns ahead of hearing in Statehouse corruption case | Aug 31, 2017

http://www.postandcourier.com/news/charleston-state-rep-jim-merrill-resigns-ahead-of-hearing-in/article_7998f620-8e50-11e7-bbc6-af2525eb6ee5.html

FBI investigating South Carolina Statehouse corruption, could expand scope of state probe | July 22, 2017

http://www.postandcourier.com/politics/fbi-investigating-south-carolina-statehouse-corruption-could-expand-scope-of/article_954c1d06-6ca5-11e7-953d-9f2de89f849c.html

Smarter corruption: How Lost Trust evolved into 'Capitol Gains' | Dec 17, 2016

http://www.postandcourier.com/news/smarter-corruption-how-lost-trust-evolved-into-capitol-gains/article_1bf64526-c3bd-11e6-b224-c3715a17f65a.html

CAPITOL GAINS | Sep 24, 2015

http://www.postandcourier.com/politics/capitol-gains/article_3c9071a2-c201-5e0b-8f77-fb1722a6535e.html