The Buzz

FIRST ON BUZZ: S.C. House speaker appoints developer to Infrastructure Bank

Bo Aughtry
Bo Aughtry

S.C. House Speaker Jay Lucas has appointed Bo Aughtry to the S.C. Transportation Infrastructure Bank board.

Aughtry, of Greenville, is a former board chairman of the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control. A graduate of The Citadel with a degree in business, Aughtry is also a real estate developer, best known in the Midlands for building the Columbia Hilton.

Aughtry said he brings business experience to the board that he hopes will prove beneficial. “My vocation is dependent on infrastructure of all types — water, sewer roads, storm water — and my business revolves around financing as well.”

Aughtry replaces Max Metcalf, also of Greenville, who had been a Bank Board member since 2003.

The Infrastructure Bank has been under fire recently as state senators consider whether to increase the state’s 16.75-cent-a-gallon gas tax and other driving fees to pay for repairs to the state’s crumbling roads.

Critics say the Infrastructure Bank wrongly uses its money to build new projects, rather than focusing on road maintenance. Bank opponents also say projects are chosen based on politics, not need.

The Infrastructure Bank meets at 2 p.m. Thursday.

Cassie Cope: 803-771-8657, @cassielcope