• On the face of it, it appears the deal for Capella Healthcare to take over KershawHealth with the Medical University of South Carolina is a good one. As reported Friday, Capella will pay KershawHealth $45 million (actually, $36 million following a nearly $9 million discount for "cash, cash equivalencies, marketable securities" and so forth) to lease the healthcare organization's real estate for 40 years and purchase its remaining, non-real estate assets. In addition, Capella is promising to spend $55 million during the next 10 years on capital expenditures. In effect, this is a nearly $100 million shot in the ...
Freedom of information (FOI) issues don't make for juicy reading, as some things involving the General Assembly do. They're fairly mundane and generally don't attract the interest of too many people. But such issues are extremely important, and there are several of them which are surfacing in the legislature for the coming year.
As we celebrate the holiest day of Christendom, we pause to wish our readers of all faiths a joyous season, and we hope the yuletide spirit will be pervasive throughout Kershaw County. For Christians, it is always comforting to read the Christmas story from the second chapter of Luke, and we pass that along to you, from the King James version of The Bible:
• Beverly Hope Melton's murder on Dec. 26 three years ago shocked Kershaw and Chesterfield counties. Nickolas Jermaine Miller, 26, continues to be held at the Kershaw County Detention Center (KCDC) after he reportedly confessed to abducting Melton in Chesterfield County, repeatedly raping her and then beating her death with a baseball bat in Kershaw County. Miller even led authorities to Melton's body. Despite his reported confession, Miller has yet to work out a plea deal or face a jury. And he won't, as we reported Friday, until Feb. 9, 2016, more than four years after his arrest ...
Two prominent decisions in South Carolina courts this week have been just and fair -- exactly the way most people would like to see the legal system work. The first was a decision by Circuit Court Judge Carmen Mullen to overturn the 1944 conviction of a 14-year-old boy who was sent to the electric chair back in the Jim Crow days of this state for the murder of two girls.
With police behavior having been in the news recently because of incidents in which white officers killed unarmed black citizens, there has been much discussion -- rightfully so -- about whether some officers are acting recklessly. Racial profiling, of course, has been a part of this discussion, as it should be. It's interesting, then, that the U.S. Supreme Court handed down an opinion earlier this week giving some leeway to police who make "reasonable mistakes" in enforcing the law. Of course, reasonable mistakes don't include the right by officers to act without provocation or to use undue force. And ...
• A tip of the C-I hat to Kershaw County Deputy Fred Tiah, a school resource officer at Stover Middle School in Elgin. Tiah, as we reported Friday, is from Liberia, one of the hardest-hit countries in this year's Ebola crisis. Recognizing he has been welcomed to and is finding success in America, Tiah says he wants to help children in his native country who have been orphaned by the deadly disease. He's put his idea into action, raising money to help pay for the children's education and medical supplies. Tiah also wants to be a role model ...
If people in Kershaw County had their druthers, they'd probably prefer that KershawHealth, the facility that grew out of the old Kershaw County Memorial Hospital, would be locally owned. But in a day when consolidation and economies of scale are bywords, it finally became impossible, and KershawHealth trustees voted unanimously Monday night to sell the hospital to a company partnered by Capella Healthcare of Tennessee and the Medical University of South Carolina. A caveat: some might argue with the word "sell," since the transaction is a complicated arrangement, but in essence, that's what it is.
The concept of term limits peaked and then declined a few years ago, but the basic idea of putting a stopper on the time people can spend making laws is a sound one. The S.C. House of Representatives, in the wake of the Bobby Harrell scandal, is now moving to limit a speaker to no more than five terms, or 10 years. And nationally, voices are beginning to sound alarms which would prevent career politicians from continuing to pull the levers of power for decades.
• We note Elgin Mayor Brad Hanley's decision not to run for reelection in February. Hanley said increased responsibilities with his full-time job would make it difficult to keep up with the day-to-day responsibilities of mayor. Although he will be missed as mayor, we believe Hanley is exercising great responsibility in making this decision, recognizing the need to make way for someone who can fully commit to Elgin's mayoral duties. In his four years as mayor, Hanley has performed a tremendous job, leading the way on a variety of issues -- most importantly, keeping Spears Creek free of additional pollutants ...
Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma has long waged a campaign against the excessive government spending that has become the rule rather than the exception in Washington. For several years, he has published his "wastebook," which details some of the most egregious money-wasting projects of the federal government. Coburn's stepping down from his senatorial slot, and has released the last of his wastebooks. Some, as usual, defy comprehension. Here, according to one national media outlet, are some of the most glaring examples of how Uncle Sam can throw your money away.
When Republicans took control of the Senate in last month's election -- of course, the newly elected solons won't actually take office until next month -- they were greeted soon thereafter with President Obama's decision to take executive action on immigration. That was as heavy a slap in the face as the nation's chief executive could have delivered, in essence saying he had little interest in cooperation with the GOP. Now, with a spending bill of some kind needing to be passed to avoid a government shutdown, Republicans must decide how they're going to play it.
• On Nov. 25, Walter Long and Willard Polk attended their last meeting as Camden City Council members. Both served Camden with distinction. In some ways, Long, first elected to council in 2006, began his political career a few years before when he began speaking out against the creation of mandatory historic neighborhood districts where all properties would be under the jurisdiction of the Camden Historic Landmarks Commission. While not everyone agreed with his stand on that issue, it proved he cared deeply about what happens here in Camden. That passion would play out as he brought forward several ideas -- some ...
Thanksgiving generally marks the beginning of the Christmas shopping season, though commerce in this country is a continually changing animal. Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving when many stores have kicked off big sales and deep discounts, appears to be lessening in importance. Retail experts say there's more of a trend now in discounting that starts before Black Friday and extends well beyond it. Shoppers have become so accustomed to discounting among retailers that many are determined from the outset not to pay full price for anything.
On Sept. 28, 1789, according to a government website, the First Federal Congress passed a resolution asking President George Washington recommend to the nation a day of thanksgiving. The site goes on to describe what happened: a few days later, Washington issued a proclamation naming Thursday, Nov. 26, 1789, as a "day of public thanksgiving" -- the first time the holiday was celebrated by our fledgling country.
We offer our condolences to the family, friends and all of us who benefited from Sylvia Upton "Sibby" Wood's life. Wood, also known as "Sib," supported or was otherwise involved in so many things here in Kershaw County, they are almost too numerous to count. But count them we shall try as we mourn her death last week in Michigan at the age of 81.
Tomorrow is Independence Day, the Fourth of July, when this country celebrates its birthday. This year, July 4 marks the 239th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence -- the document which signaled to the world the original 13 British colonies were breaking away from Mother England.
During the last week, we have published two reports on KershawHealth. The first, growing out of the hospital's most recent board of trustees meeting, focused on its market share. It is relatively healthy, thanks to KershawHealth's being the only hospital in all of Kershaw County. More people living in the county turn to KershawHealth for emergency care than anywhere else. However, the report -- broadly speaking -- noted a decrease in market share in outpatient services and only slight increases for inpatient services.
Page 1 of 1