Courier Letters to the Editor 11-25-15

Endorsement of governor’s Syria stance

Dear Editor,

The Pickens County Taxpayers Association has for 20 years been involved in our principal areas of work — property rights and just taxation — and related issues. We care about the people of this county and state, and work to enhance the health, safety, welfare and education of all those who live, work and raise families here.

We are concerned about the Federal Refugee Resettlement Initiative and the increase in numbers of people in this program and the subsequent increase of cost to the Pickens County taxpayers for school, medical and welfare facilities.

In order to avoid a premature reaction to this important issue, much research and discussion was conducted by the Pickens County Taxpayers Association Board. The results of our findings, and in the light of current events, along with the lack of credible examination and vetting of refugees by federal authorities are of paramount concern.

Therefore, we as an association endorse the recent action of the Governor of South Carolina, Nikki Haley, that the U.S. State Department not resettle any Syrian refugees in South Carolina due to concerns of proper and through vetting.

Our association endorses the position of the Pickens County Council. Their action was through a budget proviso that counties can participate or not in the Refugee Resettlement Program and their decision was not to participate.

Our association will continue to work toward a safe and healthy place to live and work for our citizens.

Dan Winchester

Vice president

Pickens County Taxpayers Association


Saitta talks SDPC budget decisions

Dear Editor,

In June, the Pickens County School Board passed a budget that had more expenditures than revenue coming in for the first time in 10 years.

At the Nov. 23 meeting, the district administration proposed and the board approved spending $80,000 on a second assistant principal pay raise for the year. I voted against it for a couple of reasons. Giving the second pay raise during the year was not required or necessary now under the law or by contract. It is unwise to increase spending mid-year when the budget is already spending more than is coming in.

The extra pay raise should have waited until next year. If revenue continues to grow, the new recurring $80,000 expense would then be covered with recurring revenue — an expense-revenue balance that will keep the district out of the financial ditch in the long-run.

Later in the meeting, the board approved $50,000 in additional spending. Again, I voted against the additional deficit spending. Adding it up, the budget is now spending $500,000 more than the revenue flowing in this year.

The past few years, we always budgeted to spend less than revenue flowing in. That is, a few hundred thousand dollars of revenue was set aside for mid-year costs that cropped up or if the administration came to the board wanting to spend on this or that new item. That way, extra revenue was there to cover such mid-year expenses. If all the extra revenue wasn’t spent, at the end of the year it went into savings, so savings grew over time. Prudent financial management.

With this year’s budget, the board/administration budgeted to spend more than was coming in so the budget was in deficit right off the bat.

The administration is plugging the recurring deficit with one-time money or savings. Savings are limited and run out in time, making such deficit spending a bad habit to fall into. Also, the district should be growing savings in good economic times, because we’ll surely need the extra cash when the next recession hits and revenue falls.

Alex Saitta

School board trustee


Where do we go now, America?

Dear Editor,

God was very instrumental in the founding of the USA. Men and women from across the ocean came here to get away from the tyranny in the old country. They wanted to worship God freely without the dictates of the hierarchy. Many lost their lives on their journey to freedom and liberty (which is given by God, not by the government). Do we have men and women today that would risk their lives for such as this? Many have given their lives on the battle front all over the world for the USA and many other nations, for this freedom and liberty. Today we are a nation that has left the very foundation we were built on. We have gone from being Christians to a nation such as we saw in Sodom and Gomorrah in the Scriptures. God hasn’t left us — we have left God. Many are doing as in Noah’s day; each person doing that which is right in their own eyes. The Bible states that as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be in the last days.

God: Creator of heaven, Earth and mankind is being left out of everything but curse words. We can no longer pray in schools, in public places or assemblies of many kinds. I heard on the news recently of some school in our USA where the study of the Koran was in force. How must the only true God view us as we are today, versus how he created us to be? God, Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. He commanded them to subdue all things and rule over all things. He told them to multiply and replenish the Earth. Today we have five judges who have made a law that same-sex marriage is the law of the land. No multiplying can be done with two of the same sex. The Supreme Court is not to make laws but to interpret the law in some judicial cases.

God gave us his laws in the Ten Commandments and other instructions. Read Deuteronomy 28 and Leviticus 26 very closely to see the blessings and also the curses we receive depending on our obedience or disobedience to His law.
Today we have the government, the Supreme Court and even our president telling us what to do. We ought to obey God rather than man, in Joshua 2 verse 8 what to do make our way prosperous and then have good success. In Joshua 24 verse 15, God spoke through Joshua for the people to choose this day whom you will serve, God of your fathers or this Lord and God who created all things.
Today we fund Planned Parenthood in the murder of babies and selling of body parts. This is with our taxes. God cannot be pleased with the way we live. We that are Christians need to be bold and stand up for what is right in God’s eyes and not be pleasers of men. How much longer will we be able to hear God’s word preached in our churches? Even today, many churches do not proclaim “Thus saith the Lord,” but preach a good-feeling kind of religion. People do not want to hear about their sins. All nations and individuals one day must be judged by God, and I think our nation is already seeing some of God’s wrath.
My question is: how long before Jesus Christ returns for the church (his bride) and takes us to our heavenly home? Then literally “all hell will break loose on earth” in the Great Tribulation. I’m going with Jesus, how about you?

Mark Wilson