Columbia, SC — Roll out the “victim” band wagon. State Sen. John Matthews, D-Orangeburg, says it’s “war on the African-American community” and “war on the rural community” because of Gov. Nikki Haley’s cuts and consolidations in the Department of Employment and Workforce.
The state taxpayer is on the hook for this department’s $675 million debt. The offices designated for consolidation take only 7 percent of the initial monthly claims. That type of debt and under-utilization of personnel justified her sound, proactive leadership, a foreign concept to Matthews.
The senator criticizes because 12 of the 17 offices losing workers are in counties with majority-black populations. Gov. Haley did not draw county borders; efficiency of operations, not racial demographics, drove her decision.
Finally, I offer the Fairfield County model — rural, poor, majority black — for the added travel this might impose. We field a countywide transit system that includes travel to Columbia. Call one day in advance, and book your trip. Cost ranges from free to a maximum of $2, round-trip. We get away with it, because our “misguided” leadership holds no regard for the taxpayer. This contrivance is the paragon of waste and inefficiency.
Whatever happened to family, church, friend or self-reliance to get a man from point A to point B? I recommend the senator spend his time trying to instill some integrity and accountability into his alma mater, S.C. State University, and leave the governor alone.
Oliver R. Johnson Sr.