SUMMERVILLE - Thousands of motorists passing through this historic town were forced Thursday to drive through a gantlet of protesters.
On one side of West Richardson Avenue, in the shadows of Town Hall, was a small contingent from the S.C. Secessionist Party, waving large Confederate battle flags on poles 20 feet long and handing out smaller versions to passers-by.
Secessionist Party Chairman James Bessenger said his group did not plan to "flag" Summerville on Thursday, but changed their minds after Community Resource Center founder Louis Smith called them out on social media Wednesday.
On the other side of the street, a larger crowd with signs protesting the Confederate flags handed out American flags while songs like "We Are the World" blared from a speaker set up in Hutchinson Square.
Read more: http://www.postandcourier.com/news/protesters-face-off-against-confederate-flag-supporters-across-busy-summerville/article_8a2d998a-366e-11e7-9e89-83a964dd5e8a.html
The utilities building new reactors at a Midlands nuclear plant aren't saying what impact a potential Toshiba Corp. bankruptcy filing could have on the troubled construction project, even as more questions are being raised about the Japanese conglomerate's financial health.
"We havent been informed about a Toshiba bankruptcy filing, and we wont speculate about one," Rhonda O'Banion, spokeswoman for South Carolina Electric & Gas parent SCANA Corp., said this week.
Toshiba's business partners told The Wall Street Journal that they are bracing for a bankruptcy filing that could wipe out many of the Tokyo firm's commitments, including a guarantee to pay up to $1.7 billion in cost overruns at the V.C. Summer Nuclear Station in Jenkinsville.
Toshiba pledged to make those payments after its Westinghouse Electric subsidiary, the South Carolina power plant's main contractor, filed for bankruptcy reorganization in March. The guarantee plays a key role in whether V.C. Summer partners SCANA and Santee Cooper finish the $14 billion project, which is already over budget and behind schedule.
Read more: http://www.postandcourier.com/business/reports-of-impending-toshiba-bankruptcy-raise-new-doubts-about-s/article_86a02b3c-35b7-11e7-a195-1fa7bc44ac18.html
COLUMBIA Only weeks after passing a bill to shore up South Carolina's troubled pension system, state lawmakers are looking to make more changes to public employee retirement benefits.
A joint committee of House and Senate members met Tuesday to schedule more meetings where they could decide how to further repair a state retirement system that impacts one in nine South Carolinians.
The same committee was responsible for recommending changes to the state pension this year by requiring public employees, school districts, hospitals, police departments and state agencies to pay more into the system underfunded by an estimated $24 billion.
While the successful legislative effort this year is expected to help save the ailing pension plan moving forward, many conservative lawmakers believe the state needs to go further by moving public employees toward a 401(k) type system.
Read more: http://www.postandcourier.com/news/future-of-state-pension-being-studied-months-after-lawmakers-voted/article_ec9f66b2-34c9-11e7-a9b3-bf70c515b90f.html
After nearly a decade, legal wrangling continues over a $12 million settlement paid to victims who were sexually abused by Catholic priests in the Charleston area more than 30 years ago.
A lawsuit on behalf of one of the victims, identified only as John Doe 10, was filed in September 2010, according to court documents. The plaintiff was molested at his church school and parish beginning in 1983 according to the suit.
"The priest involved, Frederick Hopwood, had an extensive history of molesting children that covered the decades before 1983," the documents said.
Hopwood pleaded guilty on March 21, 1994, to one count of a lewd act upon a minor. As part of his plea agreement, the 9th Circuit Solicitor's Office gave Hopwood statewide immunity from further prosecution.
Read more: http://www.postandcourier.com/news/nearly-years-later-conflict-over-million-settlement-between-catholic-diocese/article_a65fa40c-3742-11e7-9e55-13e7f998fd01.html
ORANGEBURG Gentle applause greeted Gov. Henry McMaster at the outset of his speech Friday at South Carolina State Universitys commencement ceremony, but he quickly rankled members of audience at the mention of his political ally, President Donald Trump.
Speaking to the graduating class about the importance of never giving up in order to achieve a dream, McMaster relayed the story of his ascension to the highest executive office in the state.
Against much advice, I supported Donald Trump who won, McMaster said, as cries from the bleachers mounted. Some said it was impossible that hed never win. He did.
After President Trump won the election, he made former Gov. Nikki Haley his ambassador to the United Nations and McMaster, then the lieutenant governor, assumed her office.
Read more: http://www.postandcourier.com/news/gov-henry-mcmaster-rankles-audience-at-south-carolina-state-s/article_8338211c-368d-11e7-b172-974fd06a36e0.html
COLUMBIA The South Carolina House speaker's office is investigating an incident that happened between two Orangeburg Democrats on Thursday's last day of the session.
At least one of the lawmakers needed an ice pack afterward.
Reps. Gilda Cobb-Hunter and Jerry Govan got into a disagreement Thursday about a bill that consolidates Orangeburg County's three school districts into one.
Reached by phone Friday, Cobb-Hunter refused to elaborate on the altercation but confirmed House Speaker Jay Lucas' office is looking into the matter.
Read more: http://www.postandcourier.com/politics/ice-pack-needed-after-two-south-carolina-house-democrats-get/article_5df2f540-374f-11e7-847c-bb349125c951.html
Dylann Roof treasured his jail jumpsuit, the one with crisp and distinctive stripes. He followed jail rules, except when he hid a similar spare jumpsuit in his cell just in case he was given one that was too faded, too blended into nebulous shades of grey, for him to tolerate.
The man who sowed so much terror and chaos the night he gunned down nine people in a Charleston church long had craved order and predictability for himself. As a child, he insisted on being washed in a specific sequence, head to toe, and couldn't stand washcloths that had touched his feet first.
As an adolescent, he stood over his mother as she laundered his clothes to ensure she used a certain detergent in the precise amount, his clothes all turned inside out. And when a defense attorney fighting for his life brought him clothes to wear to court, the 22-year-old focused not on facing possible execution but rather that shed used too much detergent washing his sweater.
This is the portrait of Roof painted in newly released reports written by defense-hired mental health experts who spent hours interviewing the young man.
Read more: http://www.postandcourier.com/church_shooting/defense-experts-portray-dylann-roof-as-obsessive-delusional-loner/article_7b82038a-3687-11e7-8fc8-7b9f2fb39774.html
COLUMBIA A compromise on a road-funding bill will go to the House Tuesday after a late-night vote by the Senate to approve the measure.
The 32-12 vote came after a filibuster by Sen. Tom Davis, a staunch foe of the bill and Beaufort Republican who had filibustered previous attempts to increase the gas tax.
Senate President Pro Tempore Hugh Leatherman after the vote asked the Senate to applaud the three senators who negotiated with three House members to reach an agreement Friday.
"I think they came up with a great compromise," he said.
Read more: http://www.greenvilleonline.com/story/news/2017/05/08/senate-approves-roads-bill-compromise-house-next/101438040/
FRANKLIN - Many of the women holding signs and balloons outside Angel Medical Center earlier this week brought their children.
They talked about babies born prematurely, or complicated deliveries, or babies born so quickly they barely made it to the Franklin hospital.
The women hope to save the labor and delivery services that they say saved them and their babies.
Mission Health plans to discontinue labor and delivery at Angel Medical as of July 14. Women will have to travel to Sylva, which from Franklin is a half-hour drive over a mountain range, or to Asheville, for future deliveries.
Read more: http://www.citizen-times.com/story/news/local/2017/05/11/pregnant-women-latest-victims-rural-health-care-shortage/101425818/
ASHEVILLE - Rani Khan "caught" her first baby when she was just 4 years old. Her mother, a natural health advocate, had planned a home birth and Khan's sister came sooner than expected.
It was just Khan and a birth assistant there to help the laboring woman. The toddler had pushed a chair to the wall to reach the rotary phone and call for help, but the baby came before the midwife arrived.
Kahn's mother labored for only 15 minutes. The young girl was sitting on a futon when she witnessed her sister's first breath.
It was an experience she never forgot. By age 39, Kahn, now a certified nurse midwife, has delivered some 3,000 babies, even though she has no children of her own.
Read more: http://www.citizen-times.com/story/news/local/2017/05/12/mother-mothers-midwives-growing-north-carolina/101522978/
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