Richland County “Penny Tax” Being Audited

SC REVENUE DEPARTMENT LAUNCHES PROBE || By FITSNEWS || Remember the “penny tax?” We do … This $1.2 billion tax hike became law in 2012 via a rigged Richland County, S.C. election – which by the way remains the most scandalous thing we’ve ever covered. No really … in all our years…


|| By FITSNEWS || Remember the “penny tax?” We do …

This $1.2 billion tax hike became law in 2012 via a rigged Richland County, S.C. election – which by the way remains the most scandalous thing we’ve ever covered.

No really … in all our years of exposing corruption in the Palmetto State, we’ve never seen anything quite like what happened in the run-up to that vote.  Or in the miscarriage of justice which followed it.

Yet while there has been no investigation into the “robbery” itself – which involved corrupt local officials deliberately causing illegal voting machine shortages in anti-tax regions of the county – there is now an investigation into the loot that was stolen.

According to reporter John Monk of The (Columbia, S.C.) State newspaper, officials at the S.C. Department of Revenue (SCDOR) have launched an audit into the county’s collection and disbursement of the first $100 million or so in “penny tax” revenues.

According to Monk, SCDOR officials “are looking for possible conflicts of interest in how Richland County has been spending money raised by its transportation penny-on-the-dollar sales tax.”

Monk’s story says the audit – which began a month ago – “is far more extensive than any audit (SCDOR) has done of any county’s tax collections.”

Our sources have confirmed as much.  In fact, we’re told SCDOR director Rick Reames – appointed by governor Nikki Haley in the aftermath of the agency’s 2012 data breach debacle – is personally responsible for launching the investigation.

“Reames decided to start this investigation himself,” a source close to the agency told FITS.

“I haven’t ever seen (SCDOR) go after a local government like this,” the source added.  “This is big.”

Another source confirmed the gravity of the situation.

“It is big that the state is reaching down,” the source said.  “It is like when the feds investigate the state – there is a reason and it gets your attention.”

Indeed it does …

So … what might the auditors find?

According to our sources, there has been “rampant cronyism” associated with various “penny tax” projects – including alleged nepotism involving at least one member of Richland county council.  Additionally, our sources have described “layers of conflicted interests” – fueled by a secretive bidding and scoring process.

Obviously we’re pleased to see Reames and his agency getting involved – and we sincerely hope they are successful in their efforts.

More fundamentally, though, this is an election which should never have been allowed to stand in the first place.

Even Monk – whose liberal paper championed the tax hike – acknowledges the 2012 race was “marred by broken election machines, lines that lasted for hours, ballots that went missing and numerous other irregularities.”

That’s putting it politely.  The 2012 “penny tax” election was stolen, people.  And the fact no one has been held accountable for that theft is the real tragedy here.


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jimlewisowb May 15, 2015 at 8:31 am

Fucking Cockroaches

GrandTango May 15, 2015 at 8:34 am

Looks like Kenny Bingham turned the lights on…and the REAL Cockroaches went a-scurrying…LMAO…

Enjoy that Roach Motel waiting for your Stupid @$$….

If FITS can blame ANYONE besides himself…it’s Dumb@$$#$ like you…who encourage him to post stupid $#!t that emanates from the minds of the ignorant and inexperienced…like yours….

Wild and uncontrolled hate – with no reason – is folly….

jimlewisowb May 15, 2015 at 8:39 am


Real Cockroaches May 15, 2015 at 8:48 am

They haven’t left, I mean here you are posting. I’m sure your cockroach buddy Pogo isn’t far behind.

GrandTango May 15, 2015 at 9:10 am

All you got is hate…
Fortunately our legal system has an answer for people like you…LMAO…

LMAO!! May 15, 2015 at 9:29 am


All you got is hate May 15, 2015 at 10:16 am

Most ironic statement of the year. Hi pot, meet kettle.

GrandTango May 15, 2015 at 10:20 am

Least ironic…you taking what I write, and ignorantly trying to use it against me…Dumb@$$…

On the bright side: when you copy me, it is the most RELEVANT comment you’ve EVER made in your simple-minded life….LMAO…

All you got is hate May 15, 2015 at 11:06 am

If I take what you write, use it against you and this is all you got then that means I hit the nail on the head and slapped the shit out of you. That’s why you’re so pissed. Bottom line still: “All you got is hate”…LMAO!!!!!!!!!!!

order in da court May 15, 2015 at 10:48 am

I see boz is on the attack below calling us terrorists.Traveling however when I get in tonight I wiil treat you to a couple of golden oldies from boz about Tom Rice and his wife.

The Clerk Of Courts may need more room on the court docket after Rice reads these hidden gems…..Oh my!

LindaMHorton May 16, 2015 at 4:22 am

????$77 /hr on the computer@md18//


GrandTango May 15, 2015 at 8:31 am

But I’m guessing the game plan is to carry on as if there is NO GIGANIC Elephant in the room…ready to STOMP…

Deo Vindice SC May 15, 2015 at 8:35 am

Just more pubs at work. Why bother ?

GrandTango May 15, 2015 at 8:36 am

So your genius contribution is to claim Republicans control Richland County…

If FITS as STUPID as you…no wonder he is getting sued….LMAO…

Deo Vindice SC May 15, 2015 at 8:35 am

Just more pubs at work.

RogueElephant May 15, 2015 at 10:16 am

If you care to check, Richland Co. is run by the Dims. They shoved the penny sales tax increase down the throats of the voters by whatever means necessary. Typical Dims. “We know what is best for you. Shut up and pay.” If I’m not mistaken Cola. also has a penny tax on prepared food or some such crap to get their “fair share” of our money. I’m sure the city is run by Dims. The RINO Republicans are guilty of enough. Please put the blame where it belongs.

sparklecity May 16, 2015 at 8:43 am

Just about every town in Spartanburg County has the “food” tax and not a damn one of the council members (that I know of anyway) is listed as a Democrat.

I can’t recall seeing a Democrat at the end of any member serving on any council (town/city or county) and we are eat up with “fees” and such just like a lot of counties in South Carolina.

Never enough of others money May 15, 2015 at 8:47 am

I find the irony of the wine sipping progressives(many of which are probably USC professors) stewing in the juices of their own making(decreasing property values, high taxes with corrupt use of them) to be fun to watch.

shifty henry May 15, 2015 at 9:08 am

Which classes at USC did you fail this semester ——- CONFESS..!!

FastEddy23 May 15, 2015 at 9:45 am

“Gimme that wine, unhand that bottle! Gimme that wine …”

My Two Cents May 15, 2015 at 8:50 am

Something has to be done about all of this out of control corruption that has polluted our government and public servants. People in government are in positions not to be friends with others in local or other state governments. Of course, they must get along. However, this is the people’s business, and not some social settings where government entities are to rub elbows having drinks with other entities and making friends. All that does is cause more conflicts of interest, abuse and illegal activities to fester in to nasty situations. But the biggest thing, it also causes our money to be stolen and dished out through elaborate and well thought out illegal schemes. Who wouldn’t want a slice of SC’s citizens almost 30 Billion dollar budget. And tax payers money is also inviting to crooks looking for ways to avoid detection. In a self policing system, it is clear that it is mostly easy to do things without detection nor any punishment when caught. Cover ups are rampant, perhaps. And based on many recent reports in the media, it is. But when people who are charged with investigations work at lower levels under the power freaks in high places within out system, the threat of being blackballed and having employment terminated is real just for doing the right thing.

shifty henry May 15, 2015 at 9:06 am

You may be right….

My Two Cents May 15, 2015 at 8:53 am

Mr. Folks. Will you please ban the poster “Grand Tango” from your website? It is warranted now. A vast majority of your visitors are fed up with his bitter rants and posts. They are all hate filled and slanderous.

shifty henry May 15, 2015 at 9:05 am


easterndumbfuckistan May 15, 2015 at 9:38 am


shifty henry May 15, 2015 at 9:48 am

NO..!! SAVE THE GRANDTANGO ..!! ( This message sponsored by the residents of Bub Schumpert Road)

Timmy Tebow May 15, 2015 at 12:31 pm

…and the Gilbert Rotary Club.

shifty henry May 15, 2015 at 12:39 pm

Ha-Ha-,,, I was originally going to say Gilbert CofC but more people may be familiar with Pelion and Bub Schumpert Road….

WestMetro May 15, 2015 at 1:13 pm

The 44 Truck Stop and Pond Branch Telephone welcome you.

shifty henry May 15, 2015 at 1:38 pm


jimlewisowb May 15, 2015 at 12:44 pm

and by the contractor who installed a toilet in the basement of his momma’s single wide whereby GT would not have to tippy toe through the tuplips to tingle

shifty henry May 15, 2015 at 1:41 pm

the tuplips ? — yep, that’s Pelion alright!

FastEddy23 May 15, 2015 at 9:38 am

Mr. Folks. Will you please give the poster “Grand Tango” an honorarium for stirring the juices and creating a counterpoint to the lame and tawdry g’ment handouts so often posted here by the clueless willing dupes on your web site?

Buz Martin May 15, 2015 at 10:28 am

NO to banning GT.

Why the hell would he do that? The dude is a case study in trolldom. Quite valuable to have that. pogo is an amature by comparison, which is why he latched onto GT as a mentor. Allow them to stay on. Give them something to to, so the don’t set bombs and shit.

guest May 15, 2015 at 10:54 am

That was slick Buz.Posting under one of your new aliases that you want GT banned….then posting under Buz and saying don’t ban GT.

Garbage May 15, 2015 at 10:43 am


What?? May 15, 2015 at 9:27 am

Why is a tax agency investigating? Shouldn’t law enforcement be doing this? Is no one willing to step up to the plate?

easterndumbfuckistan May 15, 2015 at 9:38 am

DOR collects the tax for Richland County so they are in the best position to investigate. If any actionable items are found they would forward them to Solicitor, County Sheriff and/or SLED.

Mike May 15, 2015 at 9:40 am

If you wait on law enforcement you will wait till hell freezes over.

sparklecity May 16, 2015 at 8:52 am

Damn straight!!!!!

SLED’s been doing a bang-up job “investigating” the SCDOR hacking and working hand in hand with SCDHEC to find out who dumped all that PCB into sewers in the upstate (not to mention Columbia’s sewer plant too).

The PCB clean-up has cost millions and the cash register is still going KA-CHING!!!!!!

sparklecity May 16, 2015 at 8:47 am

Yep, just like the first rate job they did with the SCDOR hacking

Almost 3 years and no answers or results to speak of in one of the biggest hacking of a government agency responsible for the tax administration of millions of people ………….

Just Another Guy May 15, 2015 at 9:32 am

Sic, Why don’t you look and see who filed the lawsuit against Richland county after the penny sales tax and who was the lawyer on it. It was Rick Reames. Even if he does find something, it will be buried for that reason.
Rick is doing a great job and a great libertarian and hates big government, kind of like you. But I am worried about the conflict of interest.

Same ole May 15, 2015 at 10:12 am

Will Hugh Leatherman let this happen? Doesn’t he own DOR?

Insider May 15, 2015 at 12:21 pm

Leatherman hates any Haley appointee. Reames may get a partial pass because he’s from Florence but ole Hugh has declared war on all Haley’s people.

Pissed Off May 15, 2015 at 10:38 am

Considering all of the critical transportation needs in the City of Columbia, such as train tracks, unsynchronized traffic lights/signals, poor traffic patterns and flows, why the frack did the committee pick the USC greenway to the river as its first project? Every morning on my way to work I get stuck behind trains and have long delays at traffic lights (wasting precious and expensive gas). One-party government rule in Richland County and the City of Columbia sucks!

west_rhino May 15, 2015 at 12:30 pm

wish they’d audit all the local option taxes in Charleston and up the coast…

Squishy123 May 15, 2015 at 1:28 pm

No worry, it’ll come out fine… they’re upstanding honest folks.

Laughing Hard May 15, 2015 at 1:55 pm

Richland county cockroaches running for cover. Love it.

erneba May 15, 2015 at 2:41 pm

These rats lied when they started stealing with the vote. What makes anyone now believe that they will tell the truth when they spend it. Richland County is now the most corrupt county in the state. Will anyone investigate, no way, some politicians will take paper in hand, wave it in the air, and talk of cleaning up he mess. No Democrat or Republicans has the balls to try to blow this corruption out of the water. We all know what the first cries out of the mouths of Richland County politicians will be. It won’t have anything to do with the law, morals, responsibility, integrity, etc…

Ben in Cola May 15, 2015 at 3:30 pm

Don’t be fooled folks. This story is just a plant by Rick Reames and his political advisors. Nothing will be done. Same business as always by the elite crony capitalist crowd.

Jackie Chiles May 15, 2015 at 5:03 pm

This better not stop the expansion of Hardscrabble. I visited someone there a few months back and GOOD GOD THE TRAFFIC and the POTHOLES. It’s like they saw a two lane road that was crumbling apart and decided- you know what- let’s build like 3000 houses here. It took me like 45 minutes to go 5 miles.

Noncents May 15, 2015 at 7:48 pm

Real culprits are the out of state ENGINEERING FIRMS who are supposed to be “managing” the projects for Richland County. Go back and look and see how the contract was awarded to one out of state firm who then overnight became a county firm and won the contract in the rebid. The taxpayers are paying this firm and its associated firms who are all roads and infrastructure contractors MILLIONS OF DOLLARS to “manage” the projects. This is where the accountability system got off track. Projects should be where all are accountable, not run by a carpetbagger firm and its cronies.

sparklecity May 16, 2015 at 8:35 am

If this guy Reames does a bang-up job “investigating”this scandal as great as he did for the SCDOR hacking you can forget any answers or charges against anyone coming out of the “investigation”

Almost 3 years since the DOR hacking and there ain’t squat on who done it or putting anyone in jail for doing so


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