SC

WTF, Inept-O-Vista?

MORE S.C. TAX MONEY IS “GONE BABY, GONE” One of the greatest scams in South Carolina history stems the unfounded belief that the Palmetto State’s institutions of higher learning ought to be playing a lead role in “economic development.” They shouldn’t … as the spectacularly failed Innovista (a.k.a. “Inept-O-Vista”) boondoggle demonstrates. The…

MORE S.C. TAX MONEY IS “GONE BABY, GONE”

One of the greatest scams in South Carolina history stems the unfounded belief that the Palmetto State’s institutions of higher learning ought to be playing a lead role in “economic development.”

They shouldn’t … as the spectacularly failed Innovista (a.k.a. “Inept-O-Vista”) boondoggle demonstrates.

The brainchild of S.C. House Speaker Bobby Harrell and University of South Carolina President Harris Pastides, Innovista has already cost taxpayers at least $150 million (including over $40 million in state funds). The project was supposed to usher in the “hydrogen economy of the future” and bring “thousands of high-paying jobs” to downtown Columbia, S.C., but it has failed spectacularly on all counts.

Amazingly, this “research campus” is still being funded by state and local taxpayers to the tune of millions of dollars a year – and that’s just its direct appropriations. The facility also recently received a $154 million bailout from Columbia, S.C. taxpayers – and will get $50 million from a Richland County sales tax hike (approved via a rigged election).

Earlier this week SC Biz News – a mouthpiece for the Palmetto State’s command economists – published a report indicating a Greenville, S.C.-based company called Selah Genomics Inc. had purchased EnGenCore LLC, a DNA sequencing company located on the Innovista campus.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but EnGenCore LLC’s purchase was “supported” by the University of South Carolina’s Office of Foundations, the S.C. Research Authority (SCRA) and its subsidiary, SC Launch.

“Supported?”

For those of you unfamiliar with SCRA and SC Launch, both are public-private entities which survive by ripping off tax credits intended to pay for loans to entrepreneurs and small businesses in South Carolina.

Of course what’s especially interesting about this “purchase” is the fact EnGenCore LLC was created in 2007 with a $2 million grant from the S.C. General Assembly. Not only that it also benefited from research grants received by the University (which were used to purchase its DNA sequencing equipment).

So to recap, a company founded with public dollars has been purchased by a private company using money routed from public-private entities.

Where do the taxpayers figure in all this?

We’re picking up the tab, naturally … twice.

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again … “economic development” is not a core function of government. Tax money should never be spent on speculative investments, whether they bring a positive return or not. If government really wants to create jobs, it would immediately route any money spent on such nonsense into individual income tax relief.

***

Related posts

SC

News Flash: Jesus Is Not Your Boyfriend

Will Folks
SC

Upstate Elementary School Sexual Assault Case Headed For Trial

Will Folks
SC

Palmetto Past & Present: South Carolina’s ‘Buckeye Rebel’

Mark Powell

19 comments

coolhandluke January 17, 2013 at 2:31 pm

FITS/Slick Wille, you gonna be writing about the ineptness of the other school upstate sometime soon? It has been fully financed by taxpayers ala USC to include an abundance of costly questionable things and, get this, board-wise it is a private institution. Almost half or more of the board members are elected for life and unaccountable to the state government while all of USC board members are appointed by the state. Seems Mr. Clemson left a will for the agriculture school designating how the members of the board would be selected and their tenure. Technically, it should conform to the same rules as USC or it should not be receiving zilch in terms of taxpayer monies. But, of course, slick willie, you knew this. P.S FWIW, I agree that the Vista, a bad research idea created and sold to the USC board by Sorenson, has been a total waste. But, there is way way too much waste/duplication in the SC schools of higher learning. First off, we have perhaps more colleges per captia than any other state and little to show for it in terms of academic success. In fact, we are regressing so much that we might be the ‘first third-world state’ at some time not too far in the future. Whatta you think, Smirks and BigT? For I go, gotta say this, “We have without a doubt the damn best looking and hottest gorverness in the nation” and that outta be worth something.

Reply
CNSYD January 17, 2013 at 4:16 pm

coolhandluke,

The SC Legislature approved the BOT setup of Clemson over 100 years ago. Case closed unless you would like to challenge it via the courts.

Reply
G_Goodman_Upstate February 21, 2013 at 8:06 pm

And, it could be changed via the state legislature, not the courts. But, I would imagine in today’s time, the courts would not look favorably at a state school which is allowed to have permanent board members who can choose their successor.

Reply
G_Goodman_Upstate February 21, 2013 at 7:06 pm

And, it could be changed via the state legislature, not the courts. But, I would imagine in today’s time, the courts would not look favorably at a state school which is allowed to have permanent board members who can choose their successor.

Reply
VoiceofReason January 17, 2013 at 4:51 pm

You keep dreaming! CU ICAR and the other research units have been a huge success. Jealous you are!

Reply
G_Goodman_Upstate February 21, 2013 at 8:01 pm

LOL……………..ICAR a success. Out of the 700 jobs at ICAR, over half moved to ICAR from other parts of Greenville. The only success at ICAR is marketing.

Reply
G_Goodman_Upstate February 21, 2013 at 7:01 pm

LOL……………..ICAR a success. Out of the 700 jobs at ICAR, over half moved to ICAR from other parts of Greenville. The only success at ICAR is marketing.

Reply
G_Goodman_Upstate February 21, 2013 at 8:07 pm

ICAR is also funded by tuition…….Clemson’s tuition was very similar to Carolina in 2000. Today, it is 2k higher annually while educational spending has not risen as much. Tuition at Clemson has risen by 250% since 2000.

Reply
G_Goodman_Upstate February 21, 2013 at 7:07 pm

ICAR is also funded by tuition…….Clemson’s tuition was very similar to Carolina in 2000. Today, it is 2k higher annually while educational spending has not risen as much. Tuition at Clemson has risen by 250% since 2000.

Reply
BradWarthenSucks January 17, 2013 at 3:33 pm

So what has this high-dollar executive director been doing this past year to promote the Innovista? I haven’t heard of one person moving into this location.

Reply
johnb January 17, 2013 at 4:08 pm

Agree—That dude should be questioned

Reply
jimlewis,owb January 17, 2013 at 5:09 pm

Lately every time I read about the Unicorns who Suck Cock I feel like I have fallen into a fucking bowl of maggot infested alphabet soup.

EnGenCore,LLC is a private company
EnGenCore,LLC has been sold
EnGenCore,LLC has a USC mailing address
Dr. Joe Jones is the principal of EnGenCore,LLC
Dr. Joe Jones is identified on the USC website under Staff as Joe Jones , Ph.D. Director, Environmental Genomics Core Facility LLC. University of South Carolina Department of Environmental Health Sciences 
Dr. Joe Jones’ EnGenCore email server is managed by sc edu. mail system
Selah Genomics Inc. is a private company
Michael Bolick is CEO of Selah
Selah is a Private Sector Partner of USC’s NanoCenter
Michael Bolick is on the External Advisory Board of USC’s NanoCenter

Goddamn, are all these mother fuckers related by acronyms.

Even in third world countries the sons of bitches don’t eat out of their ass wipe hand.

Then it seems every time the Unicorns are criticized there a chorus of “it is a private institution, it is a private institution”.

If it is so goddamn private, then why are USC employees under the “State” Retirement Plan, the “State” Health Plan and the “State” Employee Classification Plan. All funded by taxpayers.

If USC is private then let them go out and totally fund their employee’s benefits packages without sticking taxpayers with the bill.

May be wrong, but I am sure that Bob Jones University is PRIVATE. Don’t think their employees can draw State Retirement nor State Health Insurance Benefits.

Unicorns who Suck Cock ain’t private.

At best USC is a Piss Poor Bastardization of the public and private sectors pimping both sides of the street with $2 whores.

Reply
shifty henry January 18, 2013 at 7:46 am

WOW! That’s fascinating because I haven’t followed any of this, except for occasional headlines. Will watch for further postings on this from you – keep at it.

Reply
? January 18, 2013 at 8:50 am

Fantastic post Jim.

You can see the fascism/crony “capitalism” aspects our society has been driven toward even on a state level via your post.

Reply
CoastalJoe January 18, 2013 at 6:20 am

This ain’t over and is going to reveal more about the ‘innovation mafia’ at USC.
The space in the Horizon building marked for Innovista is empty and internally known as “Pam’s space”.
Faculty in my college have no labs and are crammed into offices but “Pam’s space” is empty! When you bring it up you get no straight answer. This ” innovation bitch” ( as she is also known) is actually a staffer not faculty, doesn’t teach or do research but got a permanent job with a fancy title because hubby managed to get himself a ‘smart state’ chair – nepotism and conflict of interest anyone. Of course her hubby was the first to move into that building and got a whole floor…

Reply
Pretttycool66 January 18, 2013 at 6:45 am

Oh yeah – we all known Pam. I know two people that used to work with her and left that office.
She is a piece of work – arrogant, self- absorbed , loves to give people “the evil eye” – another useless administrator in Osborne that adds no value to USC – wish she would follow Luanne Lawrence and ” do innovation” somewhere else

Reply
Facrebel January 18, 2013 at 6:48 am

She is a big gamecock fan and gets wasted at tail gate parties. Seen her stumble out of the Hunter & Gatherer a few times.

Reply
G_Goodman_Upstate February 21, 2013 at 8:04 pm

Tax credits were also used to partially finance the One project in Greenville, the only possible way it could be built per the developer. Not surprisingly, Clemson purchased space in the subsidized building.

Reply
G_Goodman_Upstate February 21, 2013 at 7:04 pm

Tax credits were also used to partially finance the One project in Greenville, the only possible way it could be built per the developer. Not surprisingly, Clemson purchased space in the subsidized building.

Reply

Leave a Comment