The Palmetto Insider

The blog of the South Carolina Policy Council

Governor’s Cabinet Meeting

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Governor Sanford held a Cabinet Meeting last Tuesday at the Wade Hampton Building on the State House grounds. Among other agency representatives, cabinet members from the Department of Revenue, Department of Commerce, Department of Employment and Workforce and the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism spoke at the meeting on behalf of their respective departments.  
 
Ray Stevens of the Department of Revenue spoke on the South Carolina economy, saying the economy is slowly progressing and consistent with other trends. “The fact that there’s been an increase from where we were a year ago is not anything to be celebrated about; it’s just that we’re simply noting we’re a little better off right now than we were a year ago,” Stevens stated. Sanford spoke on the current economic conditions saying it was too premature to state the economy is recovering and stating that there is a presumption of a recovery in the past quarter; the Governor stated that he believed there would be years of economic recovery on the whole—while noting that the next administration would encounter a bloated debt system and the possibility of increased inflation. He also noted the discrepancy of comparing the current economic climate in South Carolina for this quarter to that of a year ago, especially noting the seasonal influences having possibly been a contributing factor to the better economic conditions this past quarter.  
 
Joe Taylor, Secretary of the Department of Commerce, listed rankings of South Carolina and the State’s economy from sources conducted by various publications—all portraying South Carolina’s economic development, business climate and conditions in a positive light. Again, Governor Sanford reiterated the public versus private costs for such rankings and underlined the key component of “perception versus reality.” The Governor also pointed out that there existed tough economic conditions both on the state, national and international level.
 
John Finan and Courtney Nowak spoke on behalf of the Department of Employment and Workforce. Finan pointed out that South Carolina’s unemployment rate was 6th highest in the nation and 2nd highest in the Southeast. Nowak provided a presentation of the Department’s newly developed Virtual One-Stop website and program, one that links jobseekers and employers online and can narrow a job search via geographical location, markets and by categories. As of Monday, 45 000 jobs had been posted to the website according to Finan.
 
Chad Prosser, Director of the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism, gave the highlights of the State’s tourism industry for the quarter, focusing on the areas that experienced increased travel during the summer months.  He stated it was attributable to many factors including the summer months and leisure travel, the increased out-of-state targeted marketing efforts undertaken by the private sector with the 2-for-1 matching by the State.
 
It was noted throughout the meeting that although the current economic conditions in the State of South Carolina were slowly ameliorating, much more is needed and that this past quarter is not reflective on a whole of solid progression of economic recovery.

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Written by SCPC

October 19, 2010 at 10:10 am

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