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SC Retirement System: One Easy Fix



There are plenty of things wrong with South Carolina’s government-run pension fund. For starters, our state pays the highest investment fees in the entire nation – yet the fund consistently ranks among the worst-performing pension funds in America.

Typical Palmetto State performance, huh? “Less for more.” Might as well be our state’s motto …

On top of that, the individuals who manage this $25 billion account are notoriously corrupt – especially Reynolds Williams, the ringleader of the S.C. Retirement System Investment Commission (SCRSIC). But again … rampant corruption is nothing new in South Carolina, either.

We’ve outlined numerous reforms that ought to be made to this fund – none of which have been adopted by the S.C. General Assembly or endorsed by S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley (whose appointee to this commission is a major part of the problem).

Another reform we’d humbly submit? Not letting private sector lobbyists have access to the government’s retirement system.

According to the Associated Press, South Carolina is one of twenty states in which “private lobbying groups” are allowed to participate in public employee pension funds.

Wait … private lobbyists? In a public employee fund? Huh?

Indeed … in fact one entity which avails itself of this benefit is the uber-liberal S.C. Association of School Administrators (SCASA), one of the Palmetto State’s most reform-resistant unions.

Crazy, isn’t it?

There is no universe in which this is appropriate, people. When there is a shortfall in the state’s pension fund, taxpayers are forced to make up the difference. That means any group which avails itself of this “benefit” is stealing from the taxpayers.

It is disheartening to see South Carolina’s “Republican” governor and “GOP-controlled” General Assembly continue to ignore long-overdue reforms to this fund. At the very least, though, can they agree to stop forcing taxpayers to subsidize retirement payments for private sector lobbyists?

Doesn’t seem like too much to ask …