Tom Ervin Rips USC President’s Pay Raise

CANDIDATE CALLS FOR CAP ON HIGHER ED COMPENSATION Self-styled “independent Republican” gubernatorial candidate Tom Ervin blasted the University of South Carolina for awarding president Harris Pastides hundreds of thousands of dollars in raises. Ervin also called for a cap in compensation for all university presidents in the Palmetto State. Pastides…


Self-styled “independent Republican” gubernatorial candidate Tom Ervin blasted the University of South Carolina for awarding president Harris Pastides hundreds of thousands of dollars in raises.

Ervin also called for a cap in compensation for all university presidents in the Palmetto State.

Pastides – who received a $125,000 raise less than two years ago – is poised to earn more than $1 million in 2017.  The 60-year-old Queens, New York native currently earns $286,200 from state taxpayers and $395,000 from the University’s foundation for a total salary of $681,200.

Under a deal approved by the USC board of trustees, Pastides’ foundation salary would increase by $108,800 this year to $503,800 a year – putting his total salary at $790,000.  On top of that, Pastides would receive two separate bonuses of $100,000 of July 1, 2015 and July 1, 2016.  On July 1, 2017, Pastides would receive a $250,000 bonus.

These pay hikes come despite USC’s plummeting academic position and its ever-escalating investment in failed command economic boondoggles.

They also come as tuition costs have skyrocketed.

Insanity, huh?

We think so … and so does Ervin.

“It’s unconscionable that state university presidents are being paid million dollar salaries while many students can’t afford the cost of tuition, and more than 70 percent of our college seniors are graduating with almost $30,000 in student loan debt,” Ervin said.  “We must cap total compensation for all state university presidents and lock in tuition for incoming college freshman. These are common sense solutions that will make higher education accessible, affordable and transparent so we can create a world of opportunity for our youth.”

Actually we need to do what this website has been proposing all along – set the state’s government-subsidized colleges and universities free to pursue their destinies as private institutions.

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gregorybgeddings August 10, 2014 at 4:38 pm

Maybe he should do a hazy ad featuring the ghosts of USC presidents past emerging from a misty woods while his wife mumbles yet more silly bullshit.

Sandi Morals August 10, 2014 at 8:01 pm

‘traitor’ Tommy proves once again he is a lying, hypocritical liberal. Ain’t he worth a couple of million or more? Who paid his salary as a judge? Loaned his campaign $425,000 while his ambulance chasing wife preys on personal injury victims for HUGE settlements which apparently allows her to donate hundreds of thousands to the SC Democrat Party and its candidates including Democrat Vincent Sheheen.

Paul August 10, 2014 at 10:25 pm

and Sandi earns her $1 for the day from the Haley campaign

Sandi Morals August 10, 2014 at 10:52 pm

Is there anything I posted that was FALSE? Didn’t think so.

Nölff August 11, 2014 at 8:53 am

Do you have a link from a website with decent reputably to prove it?

Sandi Morals August 11, 2014 at 9:08 am

I have provided the link previously in regards to Ervin’s loan to his campaign and his wife’s campaign donations to the SC Democrat Party and Vincent Sheheen.

Ervin has loaned his campaign $420,181, according to state records. He had $271,172 on hand after spending money on a consultant and automated robocalls.

….. his wife, attorney Kathryn Williams, has contributed…. $4,500 to Sheheen’s 2010 gubernatorial campaign and $50,000 to the S.C. Democratic Party that same year, according to state records.

Read more here:

RHood2 August 12, 2014 at 6:04 pm

Donating to the person and party running against Nikki Haley do not by themselves make someone a Democrat. They might make them, being anti-Nikki, SMART.

delbert norquest August 13, 2014 at 5:53 am

Finding Charlie Thompson Passed in 2009 Has 2 surviving children Had his own business

GrandTango August 10, 2014 at 4:42 pm

Yet I’ve YET to hear Davis complain about pro-gay propaganda being FORCED on students, so gay industry profiteers can get a government-paid kickback. Where does Davis stand on Common Core or USC’s over-quota Diversity officer?…(Read our stories on that to get truly educated)…

You can’t just rail over money. You have to have some bona fides over the actual rot, corruption and hate being packaged as education. If money is all you S#!t yourself over over, it makes you look Greed-based…which is the motivation behind most selfish Liberal-Tarians…

truthmonger August 10, 2014 at 8:24 pm

Trial lawyers are a NECESSARY part of the judicial system. Judges make the decisions and LAWMAKERS (like Tricky Nikki was) make the laws. Put the blame where it REALLY belongs.

mob bosse August 10, 2014 at 8:58 pm

Just as corrupt cops are a necessary part of the judicial system. How much did you steal?

GrandTango August 10, 2014 at 9:22 pm

Trial lawyers have too much become agents for the dangerous and the guilty. They threaten freedom more than defend it. The law profession has become a corrupt enemy of justice too many times.

Didn’t Vincent Sheheen get an easy road for a child molester? If you support that, you are lower than feces. You just better hope I never have one of you DIRT Bags try to allow some sicko or killer around my children. The law you pervert ain’t going to help your sorry @$$…

vicupstate August 11, 2014 at 4:42 pm

It is YOU that doesn’t understand the legal system. Everyone is entitled to a defense, dumb shit.

GrandTango August 11, 2014 at 5:02 pm

But you’re not entitled to pervert justice, like liberal judges let corrupt attorneys do. Dumb@$$….

vicupstate August 12, 2014 at 4:58 am

And YOU and you alone are the judge of what that is, right?

Your stupidity knows no bounds.

Professor Smarty Pants August 10, 2014 at 5:45 pm

That pay is a joke. USC and keeps lowering admission standards and raising tuition. The baby USCs all have huge problems. USC Upstate stays in the news for wasting money and being a waste taxpayer money. He should earn his pay by firing Tom Moore.

Inciteful August 11, 2014 at 1:17 pm

Prof; git chur fax straight. US News and World Reports ranks USC 112th in the country and 55th of all public universities, Pretty darn good. Considering 1. How little state support USC gets, 2. That most of Pastides salary comes from the foundation, and 3. How well it performs; Pastides is worth every penny. And regarding Tom Moore, he’s made some unpopular, strategic budget cuts and is forcing the faculty to actuslly work (ie, teach). He’s going to be unpopular with some-and that may be a good thing. Want to pick on a state supported school president? How ’bout targeting the failing USC-State and College of Charleston? Now there’s some real state support of incompetant and unqualified leadership in full bloom. Please, prof, go after the right president.

Barbarossa August 10, 2014 at 6:09 pm

My God, talk about an absolute joke! This loser is receiving pay increases while USC’s academic reputation plummets.. as noted in the article. Instead of receiving pay increases, he should be fired immediately!… he’s so desperate for cash at USC-Columbia that he is cheapening the school through its online programs as well as stealing under/unqualified students from the satellite campuses. The school’s academic quality/reputation is plummeting to 1970’s lows where pretty much anyone could get in. (It took decades to improve the school’s reputation from that crappy era) Meanwhile, Clemson must be happy with all of this as their reputation just keeps on improving. I’d say that if this was occurring in the private sector, he’d be fired; however, everyday we see this kind of BS in the private sector as well with CEO’s getting obscene salaries while their companies suck it up, all because of their cozy relationships with their Boards. And ladies/gentlemen, that is the crux of the problem, the Board. THEY SHOULD ALL BE REPLACED!

Squishy123 August 10, 2014 at 9:21 pm

It’s becoming a University of Phoenix campus.

Forsenic Audit For USC August 10, 2014 at 6:22 pm

Regardless that advocates and placaters for Pastides condone his pay and package, it is just absolute insane. The people of South Carolina will condemn this action, regardless of what you may say in support. And they will condemn it with an iron fist.
I await for Pastides’ defenders to say, ‘this is in line with what other universities pay” or “this is still less that other presidents,”
Judgment Day Cometh.

well-i-am into it August 10, 2014 at 6:42 pm

MUSC board of trustees approved its president’s (David Cole) salary of just over $ 1 million too. USC has at least multi-campus presence and one of the nations’s top athletics programs that makes tons of money, provides huge entertainment and has strong alumni backing. I tend to be a little less concerned about USC president’s salary, but also agree that student’s tuition and concern for the job market for graduating students must be top priority.
On the other hand MUSC president’s salary is a total waste of money considering the size of the enterprise and the fact that most of the revenue-making efforts/decisions are made at the department level. MUSC has been cited for high tuition fees and that is a slap on its face. MUSC also has a systemic problem with low quality leadership, aging faculty (and their stagnant knowledge base) and entrenched interests. Not to talk about the stem cell scandal involving state legislator Stephen Goldfinch, which has propelled MUSC to infamy to all over USA. I travel extensively, and where ever I mention that I am from the Charleston area, I am asked about the scandal at MUSC involving a state legislator Stephen Goldfinch. The fact that MUSC has not addressed the issue is embarrassing and shows lack of even the basic leadership skills.
USC thankfully is viewed very positively everywhere I went and that could only be the product of collective leadership skills at all levels, I must say. So, president Pastides salary in my view, though a bit high, is OK, if he spends some more effort in making sure that the graduating class has access to good jobs.

Gamecock August 10, 2014 at 7:33 pm

Sorry, don’t know about MUSC; however, you are wrong about USC. Sure its athletics are in a golden age, yet, it’s academic rep is plummeting. Don’t believe me? Then just ask any top ranked SC high school senior where they’re going to college. Unless they’re essentially given a free ride to USC via a Carolina Scholarship, they’re headed to the upstate. Sorry to say this, but, I see it all the time. In fact, it’s gotten so bad that these same Tiger students have lots of jokes about passing up Carolina college admission offers. As a Carolina grad, it’s sickening.

truthmonger August 10, 2014 at 8:28 pm

Why would ANYONE waste time and money going to school in SC?

Orange/White August 10, 2014 at 9:29 pm

Sorry, don’t understand your point… where should they go?.. UGA, UT, NC State, Alabama, Auburn, Ohio State, Iowa State, etc? Seriously, unless we’re talking UVA, UNC, Berkeley, UCLA, etc, if you’re a smart kid, paying out-of-state tuition at another state’s state university is probably stupid when compared to sending your kid to Clemson. Clemson is pretty damn high ranked for public universities. So again, what’s your point?

Squishy123 August 10, 2014 at 9:27 pm

I know USC faculty and administrators who won’t allow their children to attend USC because of the low quality academics. Two of the ones I know send their kids to College of Charleston and Furman.

Gamecock August 10, 2014 at 7:33 pm

Sorry, don’t know about MUSC; however, you are wrong about USC. Sure its athletics are in a golden age, yet, it’s academic rep is plummeting. Don’t believe me? Then just ask any top ranked SC high school senior where they’re going to college. Unless they’re essentially given a free ride to USC via a Carolina Scholarship, they’re headed to the upstate. Sorry to say this, but, I see it all the time. In fact, it’s gotten so bad that these same Tiger students have lots of jokes about passing up Carolina college admission offers. As a Carolina grad, it’s sickening.

nitrat August 11, 2014 at 9:06 am

” I travel extensively, and where ever I mention that I am from the Charleston area, I am asked about the scandal at MUSC involving a state legislator Stephen Goldfinch.”
Oh, yeah, sure. Most people outside this state have never heard of MUSC, much less a piss ant SC legislator.
You know, when you make up a statement THAT stupid, everything you say comes into question.

well-i-am into it August 11, 2014 at 9:54 am

I would have agreed with your statement a year ago. But, FITSnews stories about MUSC-Goldfinch traveled far and wide. With other blogs, social media and local news picking up the stories, it surely translated to wide readership. Obviously, the stories themselves were also captivating and shocking too. The Goldfinch idiot would not shut his mouth either…he went on a numb-headed offensive and those stories also carried far. So, I say that “MUSC, much less a piss ant SC legislator” popularity is enormously enhanced by FITSnews coverage and others.

Sandi Morals August 11, 2014 at 11:56 am

+10!!!!! I stopped in a Flagstaff, AZ truckstop one time and the lady asked me where I was traveling from. I said ‘Isle of Palms’ and she said she was from the Phillipines as well. :-)

idcydm August 10, 2014 at 7:02 pm

And people complain about corporations.

Mark August 10, 2014 at 7:03 pm

The Ervin move is the single best thing that has happened this political season. i never thought I would vote for, or even consider him, but I tell you the truth when I say the Dem and Rep candidates would not say anything so courageous. They both think that the pay is high, but won’t cross their rich supporters.
Go, Mr Ervin, go, Show them actual fortitude.

Sandi Morals August 10, 2014 at 8:20 pm

Fortitude? SOB has come out in support of state sanctioned gay marriage, used a veteran’s widow for political purposes so his old lady can appear on television and attacked the Shamecocks?
He is dumber than I thought. :-) All this for 2% of the electorate? Gee wiz.

Centrist View August 10, 2014 at 7:22 pm

How does he feel about $1 Million football coaches. 4 of 10 Top taxpayer funded compensations go to Athletic Coaches.

SC Budget and Control Board
Query State Salaries Over $50,000 – Top 10 in the State

Agency Lastname Firstname JobTitle


$ 1,050,000.00
$ –
$ 1,050,000.00

$ 306,000.00
$ 300,000.00
$ 606,000.00

$ 239,700.00
$ 190,000.00
$ 429,700.00

$ 405,313.00
$ –
$ 405,313.00


$ –

$ 404,000.00

$ 400,000.00
$ –
$ 400,000.00

$ 384,911.00
$ –
$ 384,911.00

$ 380,095.00
$ –
$ 380,095.00

$ 357,980.00
$ –
$ 357,980.00

$ 350,000.00
$ –
$ 350,000.00

Download Complete Data as CSV File
Data current as of: June 30 2014

truthmonger August 10, 2014 at 8:26 pm

Yep cronyism and overpaid political thugs.

Sandi Morals August 10, 2014 at 9:19 pm

Why would Tom Ervin and his wife say anything about this? You don’t think they have more assets or money than the people you listed?

Tom Ervin is using his wealth to divide people in SC along racial, socioeconomic and moral/cultural boundaries.

Just like Obama.

vicupstate August 11, 2014 at 4:41 pm

His wife earned her money in the private sector, so where is the relevance to what a public employee makes? If this were happening under a D Governor, you WOULD have a big problem with it.

Squishy123 August 10, 2014 at 9:24 pm

Shhh, I’ve brought up Spurrier’s state salary increase from $350,000 to $1,050,000 at least twice and nobody says a word. How many other state employees got a 200% salary increase? How many others got a $700,000 state salary increase? If Spurrier stays another two years his state retirement jumps from around $60,000 to nearly $200,000. You don’t think someone informed him of the state retirement calculation is based on the highest 12 quarters.

carls jr August 10, 2014 at 10:54 pm

Nobody needs to say a word b/c you are too stupid to understand the answer. How about you tell us why your fiscal responsibility tentacles don’t tingle when your stupid ass coach gets a huge raise (8 years, over $3 million per and escalating) AND still needs two of the highest paid coordinators in the country. All that money for a cheerleader who gets pushed to the bench from 1st through 3rd downs until Chad & Brent allow him to decide whether to punt. You have no problem with that, right? Spurrier doesn’t get paid enough.

Beartrkkr August 11, 2014 at 1:38 am

The answer is quite clear if you overlook your obvious bias.

Understand that up until now, a majority of the head coach’s pay is not on the state’s books counting towards the retirement system where the state is obligated to pay until their death. There is a big difference being paid primarily from the athletic budgets and TV money, and being on the state’s dole. Ol’ Stevie seem to be doing alright making 350K in state money and a couple million funded from elsewhere all these years. Why the big state money increase, unless it is to position him to live off the state’s tit until his death? Where is all the SEC TV money going to where the state must be obligated to pay an inflated state salary in order to boost his retirement pay?

nitrat August 11, 2014 at 9:01 am

These coaches and college presidents and appointed non-career agency heads don’t need to be in the South Carolina State Employees benefit and retirement system AT ALL. They are maggots on a system that was developed for front line state workers to make up for low pay.
Let ’em do their own 401K via the state deferred comp program and send ’em to the ACA exchange for their health care.

Squishy123 August 11, 2014 at 11:19 am

They don’t need to be, but they are eligible and it only takes 5 years to become vested. Is it a coincidence that the benefits are based on the highest 12 quarters of employment, that Spurrier likely has 2 more years to go which would put him at 12 quarters? You don’t have to be a financial genius to compute this move increased his state retirement benefits by 200%.

Squishy123 August 11, 2014 at 11:16 am

How much of Dabo’s salary is state money, last I checked it was around $240,000 whereas Spurrier’s is $1,050,000. Irregardless of where it originates, it’s the number used to factor retirement benefits.

I have to laugh at Dirtpecker fans, if anyone doesn’t drink the Dirtpecker Kool-Aid, they must be a Tater fan. I think it’s a Dirtpecker law.

chucktowngamecock August 11, 2014 at 12:51 pm

Clearly you went to Clempsin if you think “Irregardless” is a word

Squishy123 August 11, 2014 at 6:09 pm

Ha!!! Dirtpeckers are funny.

Miriam-Webster dictionary says:
Irregardless originated in dialectal American speech in the
early 20th century. Its fairly widespread use in speech called it to the
attention of usage commentators as early as 1927. The most frequently
repeated remark about it is that “there is no such word.”
There is such a word, however. It is still used primarily in speech,
although it can be found from time to time in edited prose. Its
reputation has not risen over the years, and it is still a long way from
general acceptance. Use regardless instead.

TrikkiNikki May 12, 2015 at 11:13 am


E Norma Scok August 11, 2014 at 3:23 pm

Well…Wojcik isn’t getting a salary any longer, so there is that.

Hal August 10, 2014 at 7:52 pm

High salaries and other lavish spending is made possible because of the University foundations, which are really no more than fronts for the special interest that resides in the schools. The foundations are opaque, their board members are dedicated to preserving the status quo (meaning do as you are instructed) and they are awash with cash and self-dealing. The Coastal Carolina Board and USC’s boards are especially good in keeping a low profile while enabling the school’s leadership to do as it pleases.
There is lots of self-dealing, generally taking the form of “trade-offs.” The members will often “swap” favors with the friends and families of others, and vice versa. That way the self dealing is not easily detected. Law firms are also a great way to send “special” money out of the system.
it is all so easy, so very, very easy.

Mark August 10, 2014 at 10:12 pm

The foundations are money launders for the universities. Check out the subcontractors for USC’s West Campus construction.

nitrat August 11, 2014 at 8:50 am

Do the foundations get some of their money from the same kinds of vendor ‘rebates’ that recently came to light at SCSU?
Wasn’t there some report that said the ‘rebates’ were going on at other state colleges?
BTW, ‘rebates’ = kickbacks; what the vendor businesses are shaken down for to get a contract.

Cocky1 August 10, 2014 at 7:59 pm

These things are usually run past Haley before they happen. She is a member of the board and they certainly don’t want her to use the bully pulpit against them.

Besides, she will get something for it…donations, an honorary degree…you get the idea.

a face in the crowd August 10, 2014 at 8:14 pm

State universities in South Carolina have been doing this for years. As a practical matter, their Boards are accountable to no one.

Philip Branton August 10, 2014 at 8:23 pm

That SEC Network jelly really spreads the “cream”…!

Squishy123 August 10, 2014 at 9:19 pm

The reason the Board of Trustees likes him is because he’s a “yessa boss” employee. Whatever the BOT says, he does.

GrandTango August 10, 2014 at 9:24 pm

He has a Diversity officer..I bet you’d suck him off for doing that…That’s the kind of Bull-S#!* dumb@$$ liberals like you live for…is it not?

Squishy123 August 11, 2014 at 6:09 pm

Every school now has a “diversity officer”, it’s a way to get a black man in the administration building to do something besides empty trash cans.

GrandTango August 11, 2014 at 6:44 pm

Racist much?…evidently your stupid @$$ has never been on a college campus. That’s not surprising.

Squishy123 August 11, 2014 at 7:36 pm

Race card much? So am I wrong? Name one school with a white “diversity officer”. I work on a college campus.

GrandTango August 10, 2014 at 9:30 pm

Just like C-o-C and US-U got slapped…the legislature needs to take a LONG HARD look at what universities are spending money on (like a Diverity-officer.)

Conservatives OWN this state at the ballot box. It’s time to start TAKING what is ours from these carpet baggers and liberals. Send ’em back of to New York, or the other God-forsaken liberal H#!!-holes they fled. And send Ervin’s Trial Lawyer @$$ with them. Columbia just had a leftwing radical elected president of the national Bar (got a good story on it) ..he needs to stay his @$$ in Boston. Screw them.

Sandi Morals August 10, 2014 at 11:06 pm

Oh my! Please don’t tell me Tom Ervin’s old lady has given money to this “leftwing radical”? :-)

Slartibartfast August 10, 2014 at 9:43 pm

I never thought it would be possible, but this one article has shown, better than any other, who each writer here supports. Good job, Will!

RogueElephant August 10, 2014 at 11:13 pm

Dose anyone actually care what this POS says ????? Didn’t think so. Good night.

USC Gonna Go Down In Flames August 11, 2014 at 6:39 am

Its out of control. Corruption has deep roots at USC. Federal Criminal investigations come to mind.

nitrat August 11, 2014 at 8:41 am

The whole thing is obscene. But, what is really bizarre is that anyone gets ‘bonuses’ for the sake of getting ‘bonuses’. They give him ‘bonuses’ that don’t appear to be tied to any accomplishment…just be show up and get a bonus.
The compensation racket for college presidents across the country needs an overhaul. Taking lessons from Wall Street and corporate boards on how to do it is not working out. Particularly, since there is no accountability for the products that a college is turning out.

shifty henry August 11, 2014 at 9:13 am

Coach Dabo Swinney was called to a meeting with the president of Clemson University. President Clements tells him that the University is going to insist that he be given a substantial salary increase before the season starts.

“Good grief, sir,” protested Coach Swinney, “I already make more than the entire Engineering Department!”

“Yeah, maybe so, but the entire student body, faculty, and all of the alumni know what you have to put up with,” President Clements blustered. “Look.” He went out into the hall and grabbed a jock who was jogging down the hallway, and dragged him into his office. “Run over to Coach Swinney’s office and see if he’s there,” he ordered.

Fifteen minutes later the jock returned, sweaty and out of breath. “You’re not there, Coach,” he reported.

“Oh, I see what you mean,” conceded Coach Swinney, scratching his head, “I would have phoned.”

E Norma Scok August 11, 2014 at 3:19 pm

Re-runs already? You used this like 2 weeks ago.

shifty henry August 11, 2014 at 3:24 pm

Nobody like it then, and it fits in here. I try to do repeats only about every 3-4 months. I estimate that Fits picks up about 250 new readers monthly with 15% becoming regulars……. new to them. Thanks for remembering.

Todd August 11, 2014 at 9:21 am

Anybody figure out why USC is paying those big fees to the ABA other than to get William Hubbard elected president of that useless organization?

Tomocchio August 11, 2014 at 9:03 pm

He is underpaid!! He is greatness personified! I worship his leadership! Onetime he even let me make decision! I mucked it up, but it was mine!


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