Even in Recession Local Governments Keep Growing

Since FY02-2003, the Other Funds category of the budget – basically, statewide fees and fines – has grown by more than $2 billion. These fees and fines are a burden on individuals and businesses – draining the economy and stifling entrepreneurship. But this trend is not limited to state government alone. South Carolina localities took […]

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The Best and Worst to Come: A Review of Restructuring Legislation for 2009-2010

As we review the best and worst restructuring legislation of 2009, it’s also time to begin to consider what ideas are likely to resurface during the 2010 session. “Restructuring” generally refers to reforms designed to bring about a more equitable balance of power between the executive and legislative branches of state government. In South Carolina, […]

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The Best & Worst to Come: A Review of Property Rights Legislation for 2009-2010

As we review the best and worst property rights’ legislation of 2009, it’s also time to begin to consider what ideas are likely to resurface during the 2010 session.   As our new book, Unleashing Capitalism, explains, property rights are the secret to a vibrant economy. Without individual private property rights, people would lose the incentive to […]

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State Program Spends Millions Despite Expired Legislative Authorization

The Senior Center Improvement Program was created almost 20 years ago to finance improvements to 74 senior centers through South Carolina, but nearly a decade after the original projects were completed the SCPIP still receives and spends millions of tax dollars. SCPIP was evolved from a limited-scope initiative into a fixed part of the state’s […]

State Spending Growth Tops Southeastern Region

The Fiscal Survey of the States, a joint publication of the National Governors Association and the National Association of State Budget Officers was released this month. The reported cited South Carolinas spending growth as among the highest in the nation. Between 2006 and 2007 South Carolinas General Fund expenditures grew by 18.1 percent. South Carolina’s […]

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Predictability in Workers Compensation

Workplace safety in South Carolina is at an all time high and well above the national average. An effective Workers Compensation Commission should provide predictable and equitable settlements when accidents do occur. In South Carolina, fraud, excessive litigation, and inefficiency in the compensation process are leading to perpetually higher insurance premiums. Policy makers should adopt […]

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Comprehensive Property Rights Protection

Property rights need to be comprehensive. Simply re-working existing laws and limiting eminent domain to cases of public use is not enough protection. Disagreements about the nature of use and purpose are at the very heart of the Kelo decision. The decision demonstrates how a judicial ruling can subvert legislative intent. Over time case law […]

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Public-Private Partnerships for Our Ports

Policy makers in South Carolina should question the tendency towards centralized control or direct oversight of port development and expansion. The states inability to bear the capital costs of infrastructure development needs to be a recognized factor in port expansion. The South Carolina Port Authority has expressed interest in pursuing public-private partnerships, the model recommended […]

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Just Compensation: Myth and Fact

Following the Kelo decision legislatures throughout the nation have incorporated regulatory taking protection into property rights reform efforts. Bills in other states with such coverage include Wisconsin AB 675, Georgia HR 1054, Oklahoma HJR 1057, Michigan SB 694, Montana SB 262, and Arizona 2031. Nevada and Missouri plan ballot initiatives later this year. Proposed changes […]

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Just Compensation: A Taking is a Taking

The overwhelming grassroots response to the Kelo decision has lawmakers nationwide scrambling to protect property owners from government takings. Part of the comprehensive response is providing just compensation to those owners whose land is devalued through regulation, as well as for those whose homes are seized outright. [ Download Complete Article ]

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