On Jan. 9, 2009, Statehouse Report outlined 11 sweeping South Carolina policy objectives to provide lawmakers with a guide of how it could make significant changes for the people of the state. From the original proposal for the Palmetto Priorities:
“If you don’t have a policy map for where you want to be headed, you will flounder in proposal after proposal. Therefore, today we highlight 11 broad continuing objectives for state legislators to consider and use as a bipartisan guide to creating a better South Carolina.”
Here is the most recent list (2016) of Palmetto Priorities for South Carolina:
POVERTY. Develop a broad-based anti-poverty agenda by 2020 that includes the jobs, education and health care components below to help lift the almost one in five South Carolinians in poverty into better conditions.
JOBS. Approve a Cabinet-level post by 2020 to add and retain 10,000 small business jobs per year. Politicians talk about helping small businesses. This would force them to.
EDUCATION. Cut the state’s dropout rate in half by 2020.
HEALTH CARE. Ensure affordable and accessible health care that optimizes preventive care for every South Carolinian by 2020. With a Trump White House ahead, it’s unclear how Obamacare will be impacted, but more people need to be on health insurance, not less.
ENVIRONMENT. Adopt a real state energy policy that requires energy producers to generate 20 percent of their energy from renewable sources by 2020.
TAXES. Overhaul and stabilize the tax structure by 2018 through reforms that broaden the tax base and lower rates. This should include reimplementation of reasonable property taxes and removal of hundreds of millions of dollars of special-interest sales tax exemptions.
CORRECTIONS. Cut the prison population by 25 percent by 2020 through creative alternative sentencing programs for non-violent offenders.
ROADS. Develop and implement a plan in 2017 that creatively taps several sources to generate an extra $1 billion every year for investment in the state’s crumbling system of roads and bridges.
POLITICS. Have a vigorous two- or multi-party political system of governance.