Skip to main content

SC House passes DOT Reform Measure

The SC House has recently passed a reform bill on SCDOT by a 104-3 margin. The bill moves to the Senate where the bill could possibly stall.

The push to reform SCDOT is a result of an agency audit that showed mismanagement of over $50 million in funds and also testimony that two DOT employees were ordered to hide cash balances. As a result of the audit and inquiry; last December, then SCDOT Executive Elizabeth Mabry resigned.

Although the bill passed the House nearly unanimously, there were some reservations. Most of the reservations came from how the members of the Highway commission would be seated. Under the bill, there would be seven commissioners - one for each highway engineering district. The commissioner candidates would have to go through a screening panel and then elected by a joint session of the legislature.

Currently, there are six commissioners - determined by US Congressional Districts - elected by lawmakers within their districts, and there is not a screening panel.

Proposals to have the seven members elected by lawmakers within their district, and one to totally abolish the DOT commissioners were shelved.

Some legislators are worried that urban areas will have more of a say than rural districts in a joint session approval.

The bill now moves to the state Senate where the body has worked on their own version of a DOT reform bill for the past three weeks.

The Reform Bill Main Points:
  • Gives the Governor the power to appoint a Secretary of Transportation which would be seated in his cabinet.
  • The Secretary would have the power to propose DOT strategies and priorities. The Commission would approve these, but will not have the power to change them.
  • The commission would increase from six to seven members. The members would come from each of the DOT's Engineering Districts.
  • The commissioner must live in the district and have transportation related experience.

Story Link:
House passes DOT reform bill ---Myrtle Beach Sun News

Commentary:
The reform bill has some I-73 supporters nervous, as they worry that the new panel or Secretary will move I-73 off the top of the priority list. Also, the bill will put the DOT under more control of the Governor. However, the DOT will still have a great deal of autonomy as the Governor will have no input on the commissioners. The independence of SCDOT was one thing former Executive Directory Mabry fought for strongly.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

California State Route 38

California State Route 38 is a fifty-nine-mile State Highway located entirety in San Bernardino County and a component of the Rim of the World Highway.  California State Route 38 begins at California State Route 18 at Bear Valley Dam of the San Bernardino Mountains and follows an easterly course on the north shore of Big Bear Lake.  California State Route 38 briefly multiplexes California State Route 18 near Baldwin Lake and branches east towards the 8,443-foot-high Onyx Summit.  From Onyx Summit the routing of California State Route 38 reverses course following a largely westward path through the San Bernardino Mountains towards a terminus at Interstate 10 in Redlands.   Pictured as the blog cover is California State Route 38 at Onyx Summit the day it opened to traffic on August 12th, 1961.   Part 1; the history of California State Route 38 California State Route 38 (CA 38) is generally considered to be the back way through the San Bernardino Mountains to Big Bear Lake of Bear Valley

The original alignment of California State Route 33 in Firebaugh

Firebaugh is a city located on the San Joaquin River of western Fresno County.  Firebaugh is one of the oldest American communities in San Joaquin Valley having been settled as the location of Firebaugh's Ferry in 1854.  Traditionally Firebaugh has been served by California State Route 33 which was one of the original Sign State Routes announced during August 1934.  In modern times California State Route 33 is aligned through Firebaugh on N Street.  Originally California State Route 33 headed southbound passed through Firebaugh via; N Street, 8th Street, O Street, 12th Street, Nees Avenue and Washoe Avenue.  The blog cover depicts early California State Route 33 near Firebaugh crossing over a one-lane canal bridge.  The image below is from the 1935 Division of Highways Map of Fresno County which depicts the original alignment of California State Route 33 in Firebaugh. Part 1; the history of California State Route 33 in Firebaugh The community of Firebaugh is named in honor of Andr

Driving the Watkins Glen Historic Road Course - New York

  Situated at the south end of Seneca Lake in the Finger Lakes region of Upstate New York, Watkins Glen is well known for wineries along Seneca Lake and waterfalls at Watkins Glen State Park . But one thing that gives the town much renown is its connection to the world of auto racing. The raceway at Watkins Glen Internationa l holds a number of big races every year, such as Six Hours at the Glen and the NASCAR Cup Series . The history of auto racing at Watkins Glen starts during the 1940s when the race followed a course on local roads and also through the streets of downtown Watkins Glen. It's a course that you can follow today, preferably at a more moderate speed than the auto racers of yore raced at. Let's explore the history of the original course, how it came to by and why it is no more. Organized races through the village of Watkins Glen and surrounding roads were first proposed and started by Cameron R. Argetsinger in 1948, marking the beginning of post-war sports car