Action Alert!!! Stop State Agency Competition with Business

State agencies are not required to receive permission from elected state officials to pursue the development of goods and services that compete with the private sector. Consequently, businesses have no protection from unfair and unjustified competition from taxpayer supported public agencies and their related organizations. The most recent egregious example of this problem is the University of South Carolina Development Foundation’s hotel, which when complete will take up to 4 million dollars from locally owned hotels.

While some goods and services produced by state agencies are justified (ex. prison inmates growing food for their own consumption), many are not and need to be stopped.

On Tuesday, January 27th, an amendment will be offered to Senate Bill 560, the Life Sciences Act. This amendment will give small business the protection we need from unfair and unjustified state agency competition.

This amendment is being sponsored by Senators Arthur Ravenel, Glenn Reese, John Kuhn, John Drummond and Jake Knotts. Senators already indicating they will vote for the amendment are John Land, David Thomas, William O’Dell, Bill Branton, Ronnie Cromer and John Hawkins.

The amendment would require any state agency that wants to produce goods and services that compete with the private sector to get permission from the Budget and Control Board. To receive permission, the Budget and Control Board has to find that:

l. The “goods and services to be offered are not or cannot be made readily and competitively from private sector businesses or other organizations in this State; and
2 offering of these goods and services will measurably enhance the ability of the state agency in the performance of its primary governmental purpose.”

Please contact the state Senators listed below before noon on Tuesday, January 27th and ask them to support the Knotts amendment to S.560. Tell them that small businesses need protection from unfair and unjustified competition from state agencies.

Senators Email State House Telephone
Glenn McConnell 803-212-6610
Hugh Leatherman 803-212-6640
J. Verne Smith 803-212-6350
Nikki Setzler 803-212-6140
Harvey Peeler 803-212-6430
Warren Giese 803-212-6250
Kay Patterson 803-212-6048
Yancey McGill 803-212-6132
John Matthews 803-212-6056
Robert W. Hays 803-212-6410
Greg Ryberg 803-212-6400
Linda Short 803-212-6100
Thomas Alexander 803-212-6040
Larry Grooms 803-212-6024
Clementa Pinckney 803-212-6056
Thomas Moore 803-212-6156
Robert Ford 803-212-6124
Maggie Glover 803-212-6116
Darrell Jackson 803-212-6048
Luke Rankin 803-212-6132
Dick Elliott 803-212-6000
Robert Waldrep 803-212-6230
Michael Fair 803-212-6420
Brad Hutto 803-212-6140
Ralph Anderson 803-212-6108
Scott Richardson 803-212-6040
Jim Richie 803-212-6008
Danny Verdin 803-212-6016
Gerald Malloy 803-212-6148
John Courson 803-212-6220
Greg Gregory 803-212-6330
Larry Martin 803-212-6340

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