Courier Letters to the Editor 1-14-16

No repeating our mistake

Dear Editor,

Recent news on economic development in the Upstate has omitted the fact that Pickens County is not a member of the Upstate Alliance. The county dropped out of the alliance two years ago.

S.C. Commerce Department officials have stated publicly that they only want to work with regional alliances, not individual counties. Commerce has $5 million annually to market the state and only shares that with regional alliances. Pickens is one of only a few counties that don’t belong to an alliance.

This isolationist attitude is not healthy. It makes sense to take a regional approach to growth. There are far too many “silos” — special-purpose districts are one example. Regional approaches to infrastructure and growth planning allow economies of scale and reduce redundant infrastructure such as utility billing and service provision.

Groups like Ten at the Top (TATT) and the Upstate Alliance promote regional collaboration, because it has proven to work. Visit their websites to see what success stories they have made possible.

The reason Highway 123 is so crowded at 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. is because of all the people going to and from jobs in Greenville County.

Residents should encourage their county council member to rejoin the Alliance and become active participants in Ten at the Top. We missed all of the BMW ancillary economic growth because we weren’t ready for it and had no industrial sites. Let’s not make that mistake again.

Tom O’Hanlan


Where’s the roads plan?

Dear Editor,

During the last election, our governor promised us that if she was re-elected, then in January she would present a plan to the citizens of South Carolina on how she was going to get the roads of South Carolina fixed.

Here it is the middle of January, and we have not heard a peep out of her or seen her grandiose plan. Nor has she said on what date she was going to reveal this great plan.

Well, governor, you were re-elected, so where’s the plan?

Larry Allen


Who let the dogs out?

Dear Editor,

Recently, I attended the annual Pickens County Legislative Delegation meeting in Easley. There were several very well-thought-out, important speeches given to inform the delegation of we the taxpayers’ wishes for the upcoming legislative session.

I think it is important for the Pickens County citizens to know what the newly elected School District of Pickens County Board of Trustee member Dr. Henry Wilson thinks about citizens who are truly concerned about their tax money.

He thinks you are “barking dogs.” We all know that barking dogs are a nuisance and that you just want them to shut up so you can have peace and quiet.

If you are one of the many taxpayers in Pickens County who is concerned about how your tax money is being spent and you dare complain to your elected officials, then Wilson refers to you as “barking dogs.” He also thinks that concern over how your taxes are being spent is a “little bitty nit-picking issue.” And that’s a direct quote!

This type of elitist attitude is not in the best interest of we the taxpayers of Pickens County. He is basically stating that you are a nuisance — he only wants to focus on what he thinks is best and let him have peace and quiet.

Sen. Larry Martin confirmed to me that Wilson had not even signed up to speak — that he just impulsively stood up and started speaking. This proves this elitist attitude of “I don’t have to follow rules and protocol, I’m Dr. Henry Wilson. I’m special.”

Wilson needs to apologize to we the taxpayers over his name calling. I think it is time to “let the dogs out.” Contact him and tell him you don’t appreciate being called a barking dog.

Johnnelle Raines