Mammoth New State Agency On The Horizon

government chains weigh down the free market
Families and businesses are struggling just to make ends meet and reducing expenses in order to survive.  Yet, South Carolina’s state government is creating a new multimillion dollar agency.

We have one chance to stop its creation.

On June 1st, 2011, the General Assembly ratified the creation of the I-95 Corridor Authority.

According to the legislation, the I-95 Corridor Authority “must carry out economic development and educational improvement activities which, in the opinion of the authority, will improve the economic conditions” along the I-95 corridor or South Carolina.

Yep, you read that right!  The General Assembly is about to create a new agency for centrally planning the economy of the 17 counties along I-95.

Have they forgotten the Soviet Union?  Don’t they know that bureaucratic central planning of the economy doesn’t work?

The new law also mandates that the I-95 Corridor Authority must “oversee the implementation of the recommendations contained in the I-95 Corridor Human Needs Assessment”.

This Assessment is a 189 page document created by an out of state group.  It outlines how the government needs to intervene to help improve chronic problems with struggling schools, cyclical poverty, and health and social well-being, as well as other areas.

It recommends six different areas of intervention ranging from local leadership, to economic development, to health care and social services.

The last thing we needs is a new government bureaucracy to help where we are already burdened by too much “government help”.

Fortunately, the governor vetoed the I-95 Corridor Authority Act.

Unfortunately, the Senate soundly overrode the governor’s veto 30 – 10.  You can see a list of who voted to override the veto here on the Palmetto Liberty Senate report card.

The House will vote on the veto on January 10th when they reconvene for the new year.  

We need 1/3 of SC House to vote to sustain the governor’s veto so we can stop this agency before it gets created!

Though this has largely flown under the radar, it is a monumentally bad piece of legislation that must be stopped.

Please contact your Representative and tell him or her to sustain the governor’s veto on S211, the I-95 Corridor Authority Act.

You can find who your State Representative is at this link by entering your zip code.

Because this new bureaucracy has not received much attention we must make repeated contacts in order for the lawmakers to realize we are serious.

The scope and authority of this new agency are wide ranging.

It will have the authority to:

  • hire employees, consultants, officers, etc. and to decide their salary and compensation;
  • partner with any other government agency from federal down to local to implement the Authority’s agenda;
  • buy and sale anything (land, property, assets, etc.) and to manage, lease, rent, or otherwise do whatever they determine is necessary with the property they acquire in order to implement the Authority’s agenda;
  • enter into contracts, agreements, etc., with anyone or anything in order to implement its agenda;
  • sue and be sued in its own name;

The I-95 Authority will, in essence, have the authority to do whatever it thinks it needs to do in  “furtherance of its own purpose”.

Remember, its purpose is to implement the recommendations of the 189 page I-95 Human Needs Assessment and to “carry out economic development and educational improvement activities which, in the opinion of the Authority, will improve economic conditions.”

Wow, the only limit is its own opinion of what will improve economic conditions.  Unbelievable!

Now consider that the Human Needs Assessment identifies these six areas of need: (1) Leadership and Local Capacity; (2) Regional Economic Development; (3) Education; (4) Infrastructure; (5) Tax and Finance; (6) Healthcare and Social Service Disparities.

Again… Wow!  The scope of the I-95 Authority covers nearly every aspect of our life.

Make no mistake, this new agency will have the authority to do whatever it thinks is necessary to “improve” your life at almost every level.

As I said earlier, we don’t need more government to fix the problems created by government.

In order to make real improvements in the 17 counties of the I-95 Corridor, indeed, for all of our state, government needs to get out of the way and unburden the opportunities of the people.

I have great faith in the ingenuity and work ethic of the people of our state. If government simply gets out of the way, we can, and will, take care of ourselves and our neighbors.

The SC Policy Council (SCPC), in a 2010 report, specifically addresses the I-95 Corridor Human Needs Assessment and its failings.  The SCPC goes on to make alternative suggestions for improving the I-95 Corridor.

Among their suggestions are:

  • implement true school choice,
  • eliminate tax exemptions and reduce the tax rate,
  • remove barriers to private investors who use objective cost-benefit analysis to determine how to best utilize resources to serve the needs of the communities.

It’s not just the growth in government size and spending that must be stopped!  We’ve gotta stop the monumental growth in how the government bureaucracy is trying to control every detail of our life.

Government simply does not have the ability to successfully plan our life.  Experience and history shows that governments always fail miserably and the people suffer more because of their attempt, and their failure.

Contact your State Representative today and tell him to sustain the governor’s veto of S211, The I-95 Corridor Authority Act.  It is vital to the future wellbeing of our state!

Our State Representatives are our last chance to prevent this huge growth in state government size,  spending, and authority!

You can find who your State Representative is at this link by entering your zip code.

Remember, in order to stop this unprecedented growth in the size, scope, and spending of South Carolina’s state bureaucracy, contact your State Representative today and tell him or her to sustain the governor’s veto of the I-95 Corridor Authority.

We must stop the creation of this new state agency that will be given almost unlimited authority to “improve” the lives of people that live in the 17 counties around I-95.  We know that anytime the government tries to “improve” our lives, we suffer the miserable consequences!

Contact your Representative today!

About Talbert Black

Talbert Black Jr is the founder of Palmetto Liberty PAC. His education in state politics & citizen lobbying began in 1999 with his membership in GrassRoots GunRights SC. In 2008 he joined the Campaign for Liberty and within a year he was the Interim State Coordinator for South Carolina. His goal for Palmetto Liberty PAC is to change to composition of South Carolina’s General Assembly so that it consistently supports conservative principles.

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