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SCDSS Hearing: Test Of Womanhood




This Wednesday, South Carolina lawmakers will hold a hearing into a myriad of alleged abuses at the S.C. Department of Social Services (SCDSS) – arguably the worst-managed agency in S.C. Gov. Nikki Haley’s cabinet.

The hearing – convened by a subcommittee charged with providing oversight of this cabinet agency – is chaired by S.C. Sen. Tom Young (R-Aiken). Driving the questioning? Senators Katrina Shealy (R-Lexington) and Joel Lourie (D-Richland).

At issue?

Well … there’s no shortage of issues to discuss. There’s the colossal and ongoing failure of this agency’s child support enforcement database, the total lack of follow-through with regard to a food stamp waiver touted by Haley, questionable consultant payments, allegations of cooked books at its “welfare to work” program (as well as its food stamp system) … and of course child deaths.

“This panel is the beginning of the end for DSS,” one lawmaker told FITS. “After this DSS will no longer exist as it is currently configured – because it’s that bad.”

Ouch …

The only question is whether the woman who has run this agency into the ground – Haley’s political appointee Lillian Koller – will bother to show up for the hearing.

Koller was briefly hospitalized last month with what was originally described as a “mini-stroke.” She’s been out of her office ever since.  Of course sources close to the agency tell FITS Koller’s “mini-stroke” was really “some sort of bi-polar episode,” and have suggested the point of her illness (and extended taxpayer-funded convalescence) was/ is avoiding accountability for the sorry state of her agency.

Hmmm …

That would make this quite the test of womanhood …

Both Senators Shealy and Lourie have gone on the record saying Koller should attend Wednesday’s hearing.  We concur.

Given the disaster unfolding at the agency, we would argue that if Koller is unable to face the music on Wednesday – she should be fired. In fact she should have been fired months ago.

Anyway, Wednesday’s hearing will be held at 9:00 a.m. EST in room 308 of the Gressette Senate Office Building – located on the grounds of the S.C. State House in downtown Columbia, S.C.

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