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Friday
Jul202018

County to Ask Voters to Consider Hospitality Tax

Anderson County officials will give voters the chance to help the county fund the county's 37 parks and other projects by putting a question on the hospitality tax on November's ballot.

"This is important for Anderson County," said Anderson County Administrator Rusty Burns. "The need is there."

The non-binding, advisory referendum question will ask voters to weigh in on the 2-percent hospitality tax on meals served by restaurants in unincoporated parts of the county. A study last years estimated the tax could raise $3.5 million annually for recreation and other projects. 

Most of the cities and towns in the county already have a hospitality tax in place. The City of Anderson generates nearly $3 million annually from their hospitality tax.

A county hospitality tax would not be added such areas, and would instead only be applied to unincoporated areas not currently a part of any other hospitality tax.

"The ablilty to rasie approximately $3 million each year for parks and other recreation projects is a big deal," Burns said.

 

Friday
Jul202018

Alcohol Driving Increase in Young Adult Liver Disease 

FRIDAY, July 20, 2018 -- The Great Recession continues to take a grim toll: Since 2009, a growing number of Americans have died from liver disease and liver cancer.

The increase among 25- to 34-year-olds is especially troubling because the deaths are due to cirrhosis, a disease caused by excessive drinking, the authors of a new study said. The researchers suspect the economic downturn in 2008 prompted people to comfort themselves with alcohol. 

"These are deaths of despair," said lead researcher Dr. Elliot Tapper, an assistant professor of gastroenterology at the University of Michigan.

It's similar to overdose deaths from the opioid epidemic. In both cases, people are trying to relieve the emotional pain they feel, Tapper said.

He cautioned, however, that because this is an observational study, it cannot prove cause and effect.

Cirrhosis scars the liver and causes damage that can lead to deadly conditions such as liver cancer and liver failure.

The most common causes of cirrhosis are drinking too much over many years, hepatitis C or a build-up of excess fat in the liver, known as fatty liver disease, the study authors noted.

While young people are dying from alcohol-related cirrhosis, older people are dying from liver cancer and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, Tapper explained.

The conditions affecting older people are most likely due to the obesity epidemic, he suggested. In many cases, liver disease can be prevented by living a healthy lifestyle.

If cirrhosis is caught early, the liver will repair itself, Tapper said, and losing weight can reverse fatty liver disease.

More Here

Friday
Jul202018

U.S. Labor Chief to Visit S.C.

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - The United States' top labor official is visiting South Carolina to see firsthand the company's commitment to workforce development and training.

Boeing says U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta is making a trip Friday to the aerospace giant's plant in North Charleston.

The visit follows on President Donald Trump's signing Thursday of an executive order asking companies to pledge to invest in work-based education and training, including apprenticeships.

Thursday
Jul192018

McMaster Steps Up Efforts to Sell State-Owned Utility

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster is stepping up efforts to sell a state-owned utility that was the minority partner in the abandonment of the construction of two nuclear reactors last year.

News outlets reported McMaster has appointed himself to a nine-member committee that will study whether South Carolina should sell Santee Cooper, which accumulated $4 billion in debt in the failed project.

McMaster has been pushing for the sale of the utility since the project failed last summer. He says it's a way for Santee Cooper to pay its nuclear debt and protect customers.

The committee includes four state senators and four House members. The panel has not set its first meeting yet.

The other partner, South Carolina Electric & Gas Co., is attempting to merge with Virginia-based Dominion Energy.

Thursday
Jul192018

Groucho's Deli Expected to Open before End of Year

Renovation on the Grey Building downton, which will house the Anderson location of Groucho's Deli is under way, and is expected to be completed by late fall.

"We hope to be open before the end of the year," said Traywick Duffy, the owner of the Groucho franchise.

Duffy said hiring for the 20-25 employees should begin by late fall.

The sandwich chain was founded by Harold “Groucho” Miller in 1941 in Columbia. Miller started with a handful of original recipes for potato salad, cole slaw, and various salad and sandwich dressings, most of which were thought up during his childhood in a Philadelphia orphanage.

Groucho’s began franchising in 2000, and currently has 30 locations, including Clemson, Easley and Greenville. 

Duffy, who currently is part of the Clemson location, said the decision to open a restaurant in Anderson was not difficult.

"One of the reasons we wanted to come to Anderson is we already do so much catering there," Duffy said. "We were spending so much time driving to Anderson, we figured we might as well open a Groucho's there."

Groucho's downtown will be open Monday-Saturday 11 a.m.-9 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.

To see a sample menu of what the restaurant will offer, visit here.

Groucho's is part of new downtown growth and will be located next to the new home of the Anderson location of Grace Church at the corner of East Whitner Street and North McDuffie Street. 

Thursday
Jul192018

Anderson Police Seeking Help in Arson of Cars

ANDERSON, SC (FOX Carolina) -The Anderson Police Department is asking for the public's help in two recent arson cases. 

Officers said three cars were set on fire at Unity Mortuary on South Fant Street. All three cars were destroyed.

The second incident occurred on Tuesday morning under a shelter in D.B. Walker Park, police said. According to officers, a picnic table was set on fire at 12:58 a.m., but extinguished itself shortly afterward. 

Police said the arsonist then re-ignited the table at 1:06 a.m. and it burned until was destroyed. The shelter also suffered structural damage as a result of the fire. 

Anyone with information on the fires or the person(s) responsible is asked to contact Crime Stoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC. 

Thursday
Jul192018

Swiss Rolls, Bread Sold at Food Lion Walmart Recalled

Georgia-based Flowers Foods, Inc. is voluntarily recalling Swiss Rolls sold under multiple brand names due to the potential presence of salmonella in a common ingredient, whey powder.

Mrs. Freshley’s, Food Lion, H-E-B, Baker’s Treat, Market Square, and Great Value, distributed nationwide, and Captain John Derst’s Old Fashioned Bread distributed in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina are all included.

The products are sold locally at Walmart and Food Lion

The company advises consumers to either discard the products or return them to the place of purchase for a full refund.

Consumers with questions may call Flowers’ Consumer Relations Center at 1-866-245-8921. The center is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Consumers also may contact the center via e-mail by clicking here.

The recalled products are:

BRAND

UPC # 

BEST BY / ENJOY BY DATES

Mrs. Freshley’s – 4 ct./7.2 oz.

072250011907

10/09/18 through 10/19/18

   

309 8187 A 75 D

   

309 8187 B 75 D

   

309 8190 C 75 D

   

309 8194 B 75 D

   

309 8194 C 75 D

     

Mrs. Freshley’s – 6 ct./12 oz.

072250903233

10/14/18

   

309 8194 B 75 D

     

Food Lion – 6 ct./13 oz.

035826092779

10/16/18

     

H-E-B – 6 ct./12 oz.

041220296583

09/19/18

     

Baker’s Treat – 6 ct./13 oz.

041498188382

09/21/18 through 09/28/18

     

Market Square – 6 ct./12 oz.

087381760556

309 8194 B

     

Great Value – 6 ct./13 oz.

078742147550

Sep 17 2018 Through Sep 25 2018

   

309 8191 B

     

Captain John Derst’s
Old Fashioned Bread

071316001180

07/16/18 through 7/28/18

Wednesday
Jul182018

Anderson Democrats Event to Feature Geren, Harris-Perry

The Anderson County Democratic Party on Thursday will host Democratic Congressional Candidate Mary Geren and Maya Angelou Presidential Chair at Wake Forest University/Former MSNBC Host Melissa Harris-Perry for a cookout and school supply drive at Darwin Wright Park/Anderson Beach this Thursday evening.

The event, scheduled from 6-8 p.m. at the park, will feature grilled burgers and hot dogs and summer activities such as a potato sack race, cornhole and other family games.

The group will also collect school supplies for disadvantaged students. Back packs, notebooks, pens, paper and other items as part of the festivities.

Wednesday
Jul182018

Study: Smartphones Could Raise Risk of ADHD

Teenagers who constantly use their smartphones may have a heightened risk of developing symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, a new study suggests.

The findings offer a look at a question many parents may have: Can those ubiquitous digital devices -- and their constant pull on kids' attention -- cause mental or behavioral issues? 

The answer, the study authors said, is "maybe."

The researchers found that teens who used their devices "many times" a day were at increased risk of developing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) symptoms over the next two years.

Around 10 percent reported new problems with attention, focus or being still, which are hallmarks of ADHD. That compared with less than 5 percent of their peers who kept their device use to a minimum.

But the findings do not prove that digital media are to blame, said Dr. Jenny Radesky, who wrote an editorial published with the study.

There are many other factors that could affect teenagers' likelihood of reporting those symptoms, said Radesky, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Michigan.

The researchers accounted for the factors they could -- such as family income and whether kids had depression symptoms, smoked or used drugs or alcohol at the outset.

But there were things the researchers couldn't measure, Radesky said.

A key missing piece, she said, is how parents influenced their kids. Teens who were not glued to their phones might have had parents who set more rules at home -- or encouraged their kids to have "positive activities" that fostered their mental development.

That said, Radesky called the study important.

"It's one of the first to be able to look at this question longitudinally," she said, meaning it followed the same group of teens over time.

So, it was able to show that the higher rate of ADHD symptoms came after -- not before -- the heavy device use.

Media distractions -- from TV to music to video games -- are nothing new. But mobile technology is different, said lead researcher Adam Leventhal.

"It's the unrelenting access and constant engagement throughout the day," said Leventhal, a professor at the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine, in Los Angeles.

The findings were published July 17 in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Wednesday
Jul182018

AL Tops NL in Summer Classic

July 18 (UPI) -- The American League edged the National League 8-6 in a record-breaking slugfest at the 2018 MLB All-Star Game Tuesday at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C.

Baseball's best combined for 10 home runs, the most ever hit at the Midsummer Classic. Houston Astros third baseman Alex Bregman and outfielder George Springer hit back-to-back home runs in the top of the 10th inning, giving the American League a 7-5 lead in the 89th edition of the showdown. 

Bregman was named MVP for his effort, highlighted by the 376 foot longball.

Tuesday
Jul172018

IRS No Longer Requires Non-Profits to ID Donors

July 17 (UPI) -- The U.S. Treasury Department and IRS announced Monday certain tax-exempt organizations will no longer be required to provide personally identifiable information about donors.

Under the change, non-profit organizations such as labor unions, volunteer fire departments, issue-advocacy groups, local chambers of commerce, veterans groups and community service clubs will no longer be required to list the names and addresses of their donors on Schedule B of their annual returns, the department said.

"Americans shouldn't be required to send the IRS information that it doesn't need to effectively enforce our tax laws, and the IRS simply does not need tax returns with donor names and addresses to do its job in this area," said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

Previously Congress directed the IRS to collect donor information of contributors who gave at least $5,000 to charities that accept tax-deductible contributions. The IRS received a full version of this information, while redacted forms without identifying information about donors were released publicly.

Mnuchin said the change will "in no way limit transparency" and the same information will still be made available to the public, while better protecting donor information.

"The IRS' new policy for certain tax-exempt organizations will make our tax system simpler and less susceptible to abuse," he said.

Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky praised the decision as a positive development for political donors.

"The IRS' decision is a move in the right direction to end activist regulators' culture of intimidation to silence political speech," McConnell said. "More and more states were using these documents to chill political discourse, rather than encourage it."

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said the decision would give the IRS fewer tools to determine whether affected groups are following the law.

"President Trump's late-night giveaway to shady donors and interest groups makes dark money even darker," Pelosi said. "The [National Rifle Association] and other special interest groups can now fully operate in the shadows and push their corrupt agendas without any transparency or accountability."

Tuesday
Jul172018

4 States Sue Feds Over Deduction Caps on State and Local Taxes

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Four U.S. states sued the federal government on Tuesday to void the new $10,000 cap on the federal deduction for state and local taxes, included as part of the President Donald Trump’s 2017 tax overhaul. 

The lawsuit by New York, Connecticut, Maryland and New Jersey came seven months after Trump signed into law the $1.5 trillion overhaul, which also lowered taxes for many wealthy Americans and slashed the corporate tax rate. 

It also adds to the many legal battles between Democratic-led and -leaning states, including several that impose comparatively high taxes, and the Trump administration. 

Andrew Cuomo, New York’s Democratic governor, said in a statement: “The federal government is hellbent on using New York as a piggy bank to pay for corporate tax cuts and I will not stand for it.” 

The U.S. Department of the Treasury, which along with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin is among the defendants, was not immediately available for comment. 

Taxpayers had before this year enjoyed an unlimited federal deduction for state and local taxes, or the SALT deduction. 

But under the cap, individuals and married taxpayers filing jointly who itemize deductions may deduct only up to $10,000 annually for state and local income, property and sales taxes. 

Critics say the cap disproportionately harms high-tax states, many of which lean Democratic. 

Voters in New York, Connecticut, Maryland and New Jersey favored Hillary Clinton, a Democrat, in the 2016 presidential election. 

According to the lawsuit, capping the SALT deduction will force New York taxpayers alone to pay an additional $14.3 billion in federal taxes this year, and another $121 billion through 2025, when the cap is scheduled to expire. 

The states said the cap will depress home prices, spending, job growth and economic growth, and impede their ability to pay for essential services such as schools, hospitals, police, and road and bridge construction and maintenance.

Tuesday
Jul172018

S.C. Lottery Generated $435M for Education for Fiscal Year

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - The South Carolina lottery generated a record $435 million for education for the fiscal year that ended June 30.

The South Carolina Education Lottery said in a statement Monday that the increase of $30 million for education purposes comes from the continued popularity of instant "scratch-off" games.

The lottery reported that draw games like Pick 3, Pick 4 and Cash 5 and the big jackpots of Powerball and Mega Millions also contributed to the increase from the previous record of $405 million.

Most of the money raised by the lottery goes for merit-based, college scholarships. Some of the money also goes for K-12 education and to buy school buses and pay for other education programs.