BRIEFS: South Carolina’s failing grade plus a great digital resource

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State gets F on national prosperity scorecard

The Palmetto State’s low jobless rate and huge economic development victories over the years haven’t been enough for it to escape being named the nation’s worst on jobs and business, according to a new Prosperity Now scorecard.

More than one-third of jobs in the state pay less than $24,250 per year, and the average annual pay in the state is $46,411, the report said.. The data earned the state an “F”.

The Prosperity Now scorecard gave South Carolina an F grade based on 60 outcome measures from savings and graduation rates to homeownership and health care.   Some metrics:

Prosperity.  The Palmetto State ranks 44th of 51 overall on the prosperity of its residents when compared to the 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Education.  South Carolina is 49th of 51 in education because of low high school graduation rates and low proficiency in math.

Wealth.  The scorecard also found 43.8 percent of residents have virtually no savings.

Homeownership.  South Carolina’s highest grade was a “B” in homeownership and housing, which is largely attributable to having the fifth smallest disparity in homeownership by income.  The homeownership rate for households in the top income quintile (87.8 percent) is 1.8 times higher than for households in the bottom income quintile (47.5 percent).

Other scores.  The state also ranked bottom of the pack for financial assets and income (39th) and health care (36th).

— Lindsay Street, Statehouse correspondent

Check out this updated online resource about South Carolina

For years, Statehouse Report has been fortunate to provide readers with weekly excerpts from a great printed book filled with information about the Palmetto State – The South Carolina Encyclopedia.

But the rich resources in the book generally weren’t available online as were similar efforts in other states.  Now, hover, you can find an updated, full website packed with what’s in the book and more.  The site includes more than 2,000 entries and more than 1,100 “digital assets” related to everything from politics to arts that has shaped the Palmetto State.

According to the site, “The Digital South Carolina Encyclopedia builds on the 2006 print volume, edited by Dr. Walter B. Edgar and with articles by more than 600 authors. Working with our partner institutions, we have enhanced the print version by adding more than 1200 photos, videos, documents, and audio recordings. In addition to the entries from the print version, we will, over time, add entries as well as update others as needed. Thus, not only is the Digital South Carolina Encyclopedia an essential means of exploring the past and present of the Palmetto State – fostering a deeper appreciation of its richness and complexity – but it also serves as the most complete bibliography on South Carolina ever assembled.”

— Andy Brack

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