Columbia Free Times
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Legislators Approve S.C. Government Restructuring Bill

Plus, Council Votes to Explore Baseball Further
By Eva Moore
Wednesday, January 22, 2014 |
The state House and Senate both passed a bill that would demolish the Budget and Control Board and create a cabinet Department of Administration. The long-hoped-for reforms, though less than some had hoped for, would fundamentally change the way South Carolina's government operates, giving more executive authority to the governor and more oversight power to the Legislature. Haley has supported a Department of Administration in the past, but it remains to be seen whether she'll sign the current bill.


Columbia City Council took some tentative steps Tuesday toward bringing minor-league baseball to Columbia, voting 5-2 to begin formal negotiations and information gathering about a stadium at Bull Street. The vote came near the end of a six-hour public hearing, at which a majority of the speakers told Council they're none too psyched about paying for a stadium.


Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin gave the State of the City address Tuesday night, and though you might have been expecting him to say the state of the city is "strong," or maybe "sound," Benjamin opted for, "You ask, 'What is the State of our City?' and I say 'We shine.'” Among the plans the mayor rolled out in the speech: building a new baseball stadium; generating more property tax revenues; launching an initiative to help African-American boys succeed; and more.


Gov. Nikki Haley gives the State of the State address tonight at 7 p.m. Watch it on SCETV.


A Clarendon County court is holding a hearing into whether 14-year-old George Stinney got a fair trial 70 years year ago before being executed for murder.



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