Friday, October 21, 2016

The Agenda: DHEC blames unnamed staffer in abortion law snafu; Haley calls Trump language "irresponsible"

Summey insists he supports I-526

Posted by Sam Spence on Fri, Oct 21, 2016 at 12:03 PM

Haley addresses the media during October's storms - GOVERNOR'S OFFICE
  • Governor's Office
  • Haley addresses the media during October's storms

A judge hears a change of venue request from defense attorneys for Michael Slager today. Jury selection is scheduled to start on Oct. 31. Source: AP

Answering Donald Trump's refusal to say he'll accept results of the presidential election and that the contest will be rigged, Gov. Nikki Haley said yesterday, "This election is not rigged, and it's irresponsible to say that it is." Source: P&C

DHEC is blaming an unnamed staffer for language that got into proposals for state abortion law changes, specifically saying that lawmakers did not add the proposals that would have required some women to get their husbands' permission and take an STD test before legally having an abortion. Source: P&C

But the P&C's Brian Hicks isn't buying it: "Who knew the South Carolina Legislature had so much medical expertise?"

Planners of the massive Lorelei mixed-use real estate development will unveil their designs for the high-end site at the eastern end of Romney Street that could one day include about 4,000 homes and space for businesses. Source: P&C

North Charleston officials are generally in favor of a plan to redevelop a former shopping mall site to include a new grocery store on lower Rivers Avenue, but they want more info. Source: P&C

In Abbeville, S.C., where one of the first secession proposals was signed and where Jefferson Davis plotted the final days of the Civil War, the local town council has approved a memorial marking the site of the brutal 1916 lynching of a black man. Source: AP

In an op-ed published by the P&C, Charleston County Council Chairman Elliott Summey says "I am 100 percent for the 526 extension and always will be" despite secretly recorded meetings that appear to capture him 'playing both sides.'

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Thursday, October 20, 2016

The Agenda: Gowdy in leaked Clinton camp emails; Townville shooting info reportedly withheld

Posted by Sam Spence on Thu, Oct 20, 2016 at 12:05 PM

  • File photo

The former secretary at Emanuel AME is suing the church after she was fired shortly after the 2015 shooting when she spoke up about the church's handling of donations that were pouring in. Source: P&C, WBTW

Construction has begun on Blackbaud's new Daniel Island headquarters. Source: Daniel Island News

Upstate Congressman Trey Gowdy was a topic of conversation in the days before the Benghazi hearing. Source: The State

Video and other records in the Townville Elementary shooting is reportedly not being released. Source: Anderson Independent-Mail

Sorry, North Charleston. You're not getting a new Catawba bingo hall. (Yet.) Source: P&C

If you're thinking about writing in your vote in the general election next month, think again. Source: The State

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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

DHEC to amend proposed abortion clinic regulations included in error

Agency apologizes for any confusion

Posted by Dustin Waters on Wed, Oct 19, 2016 at 4:48 PM

  • DHEC
A draft of proposed changes in regulations for licensed abortion clinics in South Carolina would have required some women seeking abortions to obtain consent from their husbands and require them to undergo additional testing for sexually transmitted diseases. But according to a spokesperson for the state’s Department of Health and Environmental Control, errors were found in the language of the drafted revisions, which the agency plans to update following comments received during the current public comment period.

A proposed change to require a husband’s consent for women receiving an abortion was included in error, as was language regarding testing for sexually transmitted diseases, which were meant to be carried forward as recommendations, not requirements, according to Jennifer Read, chief communications officer with DHEC.

“The proposed changes to the regulation were meant only to better conform to the recommendations by the S.C. House Legislative Audit Council and the S.C. House Legislative Oversight Committee, as well as to conform to recent statutory changes that were passed during the last legislative session,” wrote Read. “We apologize for any confusion or concern these errors may have caused and are correcting the language in the current draft, which will be reviewed again by stakeholders tomorrow.”

In the current draft of the first major update to regulations for clinics since 1996, DHEC requires abortion clinics to maintain at least one obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) board-certified physician on staff who has admitting privileges at a local hospital with OB/GYN services or have a signed agreement with an OB/GYN board-certified physician to ensure his or her availability during all operating hours. According to DHEC’s proposal, any new regulations would require a legislative review.

Vicki Ringer, South Carolina director of public affairs for Planned Parenthood South Atlantic, argues that requiring physicians who perform abortions to be board-certified OB/GYNS simply reduces the number of physicians available for clinics and that other trained physicians, such as doctors of internal medicine, are capable of providing care for those seeking abortions.

According to Elizabeth Nash with the Guttmacher Institute, an organization that examines reproductive health issues and legislation, this requirement poses a problem for many clinics. As senior state issues associate with the institute, Nash says there are some states that require either the abortion provider have admitting privileges or requires the provider to have an agreement with a physician who does, but this regulation applies to OB/GYNs.

Nash calls the regulation another attempt to use admitting privileges to close clinic doors, writing, “In a sense, this requirement could be more burdensome because the provider with the admitting privileges must be an OB/GYN and there are fewer of them."

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Folly bans plastic bags from the beach

Bag ban hits the sand

Posted by Dustin Waters on Wed, Oct 19, 2016 at 10:38 AM

Folly Beach City Council has taken a strong stand on reducing litter - FLICKR USER VELKR0
  • Flickr user velkr0
  • Folly Beach City Council has taken a strong stand on reducing litter
Folly Beach City Council voted unanimously Tuesday evening to prohibit the use of single-use plastic bags, balloons, and all polystyrene foam (Styrofoam) plates, cups, and containers on the beach. Those found violating that ban could face a fine up to $500 or 30 days in jail.

Effective immediately, the new ordinance comes just one month after Folly Beach officials passed new rules that will prevent businesses from distributing single-use plastic bags to customers. With plastic bags soon to be no longer an option, stores are asked to provide or make available to customers reusable carry-out bags or recyclable paper bags.

The ordinance also prohibits businesses from selling or providing customers with polystyrene foam coolers or cups. Taking effect at the start of next year, businesses found in violation of the ban would face a $100 fine on first offense, $200 for the second, and $500 for each additional violation during a 12-month period. Repeat offenders could also have their business licenses suspended or revoked by the city.

Folly Beach efforts follow the Isle of Palms ban, which in 2015 became the first municipality in South Carolina to put in place a ban on single-use plastic bags. The Isle of Palms’ ban also passed by a unanimous vote from City Council, and the ordinance officially went into effect at the start of this year.

Hoping to gather information on how residents throughout the city of Charleston feel about single-use plastic bags, a coalition of city, county, and private environmental groups released a survey this summer. Although the survey’s introduction states that residents should not assume any foregone conclusions regarding future bans on plastics in the city, it is also written that the survey’s purpose is to “gauge support, concern, and information gaps regarding possible ways to reduce plastic bags in our communities.”

The introduction later adds, “We are interested in exploring ways to minimize the use of plastic — specifically, single-use plastic bags — to benefit the health and natural beauty of our community.”

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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Agenda: "The election's not rigged"; Another CofC fraternity suspended; Duncan says "Thank God for Wikileaks"

FBI will ask

Posted by Sam Spence on Tue, Oct 18, 2016 at 10:46 AM

  • Flickr user gageskidmore

A third College of Charleston fraternity has reportedly been disciplined due to violations concerning alcohol, drugs, and hazing. Source: P&C

The Department of Justice will be in North Charleston next month to discuss a proposal to improve relationships between local police and the community. Source: P&C

P&C editorial: "No, the election's not rigged"

Ohio State election law expert on election rigging: "I think it's extraordinarily unlikely"

Samantha Holvey, a former Miss USA contestant who now lives in Mount Pleasant, told CNN last week that former pageant owner Donald Trump regularly appeared in backstage areas where contestants were preparing and would "look you over from head to toe like we were just meat, we were just sexual objects, that we were not people." Source: P&C, CNN

The FBI will ask a judge to dismiss the lawsuit against the agency alleging negligence in last summer's Emanuel AME church shooting. Accused shooter Dylann Roof was reportedly allowed to buy a gun after a federal background check was not completed within a time window allowed under S.C. law. Source: AP

Yesterday, Congressman Jeff Duncan, a Trump supporter, assailed the media, tweeting "Thank God for Wikileaks - doing the job that MSM WON'T!" Duncan clarified that he's not praising Wikileaks leader Julian Assange, but said "MSM Major Networks" are "in collusion" with the Clinton campaign. Source: CNN, P&C

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