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Volume 3 Number 6                                                                        21 May 2011
Basic Ideas

J.R. Wilt
From the Editor
      This newsletter is published as events warrant. Subscribers receive an email when updates are published. The email is very brief and contains a link to the new edition.  If you have news, pictures. links or comments  please let me know.  Note that the link on the Resources page now includes a way to check out the voting records of members of the SC legislature.
    To subscribe, click here.

    J.R. Wilt, Editor and Publisher


School Choice Needs Help Now
    The School Choice bill, H 3407,  has been favorably reported out of committee  and will be on the House floor within the next few days. The best information available indicates that the vote will be on Thursday 26 June. Success depends on a flood of messages to SC House members to counter the flood of taxpayer funded lobbying put forth by the educational establishment. Watch the video - it is your legislators asking for your help.  FreedomWorks can provide some help with letters via email; if you need help click here. One way or another everyone needs to add to the pile of communications available to your legislators.
School Districts to Borrow Without Voter Approval
    H4149, S884, S785 and S877 and a joint resolution sponsored by Rep. Leon Stavrinakia (R - Charleston) would allow five SC school bistricts to borrow money without voter approval to fund operations. This adds to the three local school districts that received such approval last year. Details are here.
    These bills are disturbing from two viewpoints, school districts should not be able to borrow without the approval of the taxpayers who will pay the bill. Short term cash flow difficulties do happen and there is nothing wrong with borrowing short term to fund them, but school districts should be seeking standby authority to do this from their own voters.
    The more distressing aspect to the situation is the way these matters come up in the legislature. They are presented as "Local Issues" and only the local legislators involved vote on them, all others abstain. This allows the 4-6 local state legisators to use the authority of the state to override local protections. This means that even a veto by the governor can be overridden by a single legislator because no one else votes on the matter. The legislature abdicates its moral responsibility in this situation.


Legislature to Adjourn 2 June
    Matters that need to be resolved before adjournement are the budget, redistricting, School Choice and Immigration Reform. The Legislature is expected to reconvene later in June to deal with any vetoes and redistricting. 

    Current redistricting information is available here courtesy of the Charleston TEA Party.  The redistricting plan proposed by the SC House is available here.
 Immigration Reform
    The S 20 Immigratiion Reform bill has been favorably reported out of the House Judiciary Committee and will move to the floor in the next few days. This bill passed the Senate on 10 March. This bill will require employers to employ only individuals who can prove their citizenship on the date of employment and provide substantial penalties for employers who employ non-citizens. The bill will also allow police to verify the citizenship or immigration status of an individual stopped, detained or arrested in connection with another matter. Local jurisdictions will be authorized to enter into agreements with the Federal Government that will result in the deportation of individuals illegally in the US.

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