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Wednesday
Apr242019

S.C. Unlikely to Pass Abortion Bill, Education Reform

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina House is debating a bill that would ban almost all abortions once a fetal heartbeat can be detected.

But unlike efforts in other states, this ban has little chance of passing in 2019.

A heartbeat typically can be detected around the sixth week of pregnancy, so early that many women aren't yet aware they're pregnant.

Proponents of the bill say all life should be considered sacred once a heartbeat can be detected.

Advocates on both sides expect Wednesday's debate to be extensive. Supporters will need a two-thirds vote from the House and the less conservative Senate ahead of a legislative deadline.

Other states like Kentucky, Ohio, Georgia have passed heartbeat abortion bills this year.

Meanwhile, rhe lawmaker leading an education reform bill through the South Carolina Senate says he doesn't expect the proposal to pass this year.

Senate Education Committee Chairman Greg Hembree gave a briefing on the bill to his colleagues Wednesday.

Hembree says a Senate subcommittee removed several items from the bill passed by the House, including a Student Bill of Rights and a Zero to Twenty Committee that would oversee education.

The Republican says the subcommittee held 15 meetings including four public hearings across the state that helped them trim the massive legislation.

Hembree said he hopes to get the bill out of committee and on the Senate calendar, but does not expect a vote because senators are debating the future of Santee Cooper and other items.

Wednesday
Apr242019

AU President's Gala Scheduled for Saturday

Anderson University will host the annual President's Gala, Saturday at 8 p.m. in the Henderson Auditorium of the Callie Stringer Rainey Fine Arts Center. AU musicians, dancers, actors, and vocalists at Anderson University will perform at this year's event, presented by the South Carolina School of the Arts.

The gala is the culmination of the academic year at the South Carolina School of the Arts.  The evening's entertainment will range from orchestral arrangements to West African drums and dance to show tunes. 

Admission is free, but tickets are required and can be obtained through the AU Box Office. For more information call 864-231-2080.

Wednesday
Apr242019

Belton Landing Gets $100,000 Grant for ADA Kayak Launch

The City of Belton and Anderson County have been awarded a $100,000 grant from the Duke Energy Foundation’s Water Resources Fundto provide an ADA-accessible kayak launch and other improvements at Belton Landing on the Saluda River Blue Trail. 

“The City of Belton has been working very hard to attract cultural and nature-based tourism to the community, and this announcement is yet another sign of their success." said Anderson County Council Vice Chairman Ray Graham.  "I am very proud that Anderson County is able to partner with the city on developing the Belton Landing site, and I am confident that the Saluda River Blue Trail will continue to grow into a beloved and nationally-recognized regional amenity.”

Belton Landing will serve as the southern anchor of a 20-mile segment of the Blue Trail that begins at Dolly Cooper Park in Powdersville. The Belton Access is located about 3 miles south of Duke Energy's new 750-megawatt combined-cycle natural gas plant at the W.S. Lee Station.  Over one million people live within 50 miles of the Belton Access. The site’s convenient location make it an attractive destination for kayakers, anglers, wildlife watchers, and those seeking more passive recreational interests.

“The Saluda River Blue Trail directly serves hundreds of my constituents and benefits several cities, towns, and unincorporated communities in our region," said S.C. Sen. Mike Gambrell. "I offer my heartfelt congratulations to the City of Belton on this accomplishment and my sincere thanks to our friends at the Duke Energy Foundation for their support.”

This project represents the second major investment in a Saluda River Blue Trail Project and the third grant award overall for an Anderson County-based project by the Duke Energy Foundation’s Water Resource Fund.

“The Belton Landing project will serve to enhance access to and awareness of one of South Carolina’s most important natural resources." said Belton Mayor Wendell Page. "The Saluda River Blue Trail attracts nature-based tourism from around the globe, and we are proud to serve as the host site for this major expansion of recreational opportunities in our region.” 

The improvements at Belton Landing will represent the third major improvement along the Anderson County portion of the Saluda River Blue Trail over the last 36 months. Conceived by a consortium of public entities, private sector interests, advocates for the physically-challenged, environmental groups, and other stakeholders, the blue trail enhances water recreational access for six South Carolina counties along the Saluda River. Along with its two sister sites in Powdersville and Pelzer, this improved facility will promote and preserve our local natural resources by creating river access and resource awareness.

Belton Landing will serve as the southern anchor of a 20-mile segment of the Blue Trail that begins at Dolly Cooper Park in Powdersville. The Belton Access is located about 3 miles south of Duke Energy's new 750-megawatt combined-cycle natural gas plant at the W.S. Lee Station.  Over one million people live within 50 miles of the Belton Access. The site’s convenient location make it an attractive destination for kayakers, anglers, wildlife watchers, and those seeking more passive recreational interests.

Located on Cooley Bridge Road at the Saluda River crossing into Greenville County, Belton Landing is owned and operated by the City of Belton and currently serves as an informal public access point.  The City will continue to own and operate the facility after improvements are completed.  

“It is hard to overstate the importance of this project to our community," said S.C. Rep. Jay West. "These Blue Trail amenities serve not only to improve river access, they also provide economic stimulus to the region and serve to raise awareness to the fundamental importance of preserving our pristine natural resources.” 

Wednesday
Apr242019

Crappie Pro/AM Tournament May 3 at Green Pond

Observer Reports

Pro and amatuer Crappie anglers from several states will travel to Green Pond Landing on Hartwell Lake May 4 to participate in a Crappie USA (CUSA) Tournament Trail event presented by Bass Pro Shops Cabela’s. Local and traveling anglers will be vying for cash, prizes, and an opportunity to compete at the 2019 CUSA Classic which will feature a guaranteed payout of $125,000 in cash and prizes.

Hartwell Lake's 56,000 acres of surface water is well-know for it's large population of crappie.

Teams may consist of one or two anglers, with a third member allowed if the angler is under the age of 16 years old. Early registration can be accomplished on the CUSA website at https://www.crappieusa.com/Tournament_Registration.cfm. Teams may also enter by calling (502) 384-5924 or by entering at the mandatory pre-tournament seminar on the night before the tournament begins. 

Participating anglers must be a member of the American Crappie Association. Each membership will include a subscription to the official publication of Crappie USA, one of the top crappie fishing publications in the nation .https://www.crappieusa.com/Membership_Information.cfm

Wednesday
Apr242019

Walgreen's/Golden Harvest Food Event Set for Saturday

Observer Reports
Walgreen's Anderson Distribution Center and Golden Harvest Food Bank are teaming up for the 'Deliver a Difference' event Saturday, from 9-11 a.m. at the Golden Harvest distribution center at 311 Alliance Parkway in Williamston.
Walgreens employees in Anderson have spent the last month collecting food at its nearby distribution center and will be packing family food boxes for delivery to a local food pantry as part of its partnership with Feeding America and its food banks. Walgreens also regularly makes food and other household product donations to Golden Harvest, which are passed on to families in need through local food pantries.
One in six people in South Carolina and one in five children struggle with food insecurity and getting enough to eat.
Tuesday
Apr232019

Anderson County Students to be Honored at Cory White Awards

Greg Wilson/Anderson Observer

The Anderson County Human Relations Council will honor the following Anderson County students as recipients of the 2019 Cory White Diversity Award in recognition of their efforts to promote the qualities of diversity and acceptance within our community tonight beginning at 6 p.m. at the Anderson Civic Center: 

  • Alivia Hahn—Palmetto Middle School 
  • Matthew Froedge—Palmetto High School 
  • Alicia Kober—Powdersville Middle School
  • Cole Bracken—Powdersville High School
  • Robert Harkness—Wren Middle School  
  • Anna Wright—Wren High School
  • Quamel Edwards—Belton Middle School
  • Victoria Langlo—Honea Path Middle School  
  • Betty Breazeale—Belton-Honea Path High School
  • Sydney Broadwell—Starr-Iva Middle School  
  • Rayanna Cape—Crescent High School
  • Zoe Gutierrez-Granados—Riverside Middle School  
  • Matthew McMillan—Pendleton High School
  • Dusty Maxwell—Glenview Middle School  
  • Abby Cartee—McCants Middle School
  • Madelyn Alcott—Robert Anderson Middle School
  • Kellse Flores—Southwood Middle School
  • Jasmin Patel—T.L. Hanna High School  
  • Kerrington Johnson—Westside High School
  • Justin Shirley—Anderson County Alternative School
  • Nesrill Holley—Anderson Five Charter School

“These young people represent the best aspects of our community”, said Human Relations Council Chairman Maria Torres.  “Through their everyday actions they demonstrate an understanding that every person has worth and dignity, and the Human Relations Council is honored to celebrate them as we also celebrate the life of Cory White.” 

These students will be recognized at the dinner event, which will include a keynote address by Ms. Angel Wheeler, 2018 Miss Black South Carolina, and founder of Angel ELITE Model Troupe. More than 200 attendees are expected, including students, their families, school principals and staff, school district superintendents, and special guests. 

The awards wll be presented by Anderson County Council Chairman Tommy Dunn, Anderson County Administrator Rusty Burns, and Human Relations Council Executive Committee Members Elise Hind and Doris Reed.

The Cory White Diversity Award program was established by the Anderson County HRC to honor the memory of the student designer of the Anderson County Human Relations Council logo, Cory White.  It was only after Cory’s death in an automobile accident that the HRC became aware of what an outstanding young man he was and how he demonstrated love and acceptance of all people, going out of his way to make others feel important and valued. 

The HRC established the Cory White Diversity Award to honor his memory and recognize young people within the community who share his values and strong character.  Area schools are invited to nominate students who make a positive impact on peers, teachers, and /or school staff in the areas of human rights, special needs and disabilities, and/or cultural inclusion and acceptance. 

The Anderson County Human Relations Council seeks to improve human relations by building bridges and lowering barriers among all races and ethnic groups represented throughout Anderson County.  The HRC was established as a commission to aid the county and municipal governments in efforts to improve relations among all races, ethnic, and age groups represented in Anderson County.  The HRCs membership is comprised of volunteers appointed by the Anderson County Council and Mayors from the nine municipalities in the county.

Monday
Apr222019

Anderson County Honors Local Fishing Champions

Anderson County honored Bassmaster Elite Pro Champion Brandon Cobb and FLW Pro Champion Brian Latimer, at the "Green Pond for the Champions" event at Green Pond Landing on Hartwell Lake earlier today. Lake Hartwell event. Both anglers have local sponsors, with Cobb wearing a "Visit Anderson" patch and Latimer a "Green Pond Landing" patch on their jerseys.

 

Monday
Apr222019

State's Highest Peak Observation Tower Now Open

SASSAFRAS MOUNTAIN, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina's highest point now has a $1 million observation tower.

The state Department of Natural Resources opened an observation tower Monday that has been nearly a decade in the making on top of Sassafras Mountain in Pickens County.

The tower is the final part of a project to improve access and the view on the mountain, which officials say was on a bad road with limited parking and poor visibility because of trees.

The tower runs along the South Carolina-North Carolina state line. On a clear day, visitors can see up to 50 miles (80 kilometers) into Georgia.

Sassafras Mountain peaks at 3,553 feet (1,083 meters) above sea level.

The $1 million to build the tower came from corporate and private donations, Pickens County and conservation trust funds.

Monday
Apr222019

Weekly "The Lunch Box" Offers Good Ideas for Tasty Lunch

The Lunch Box, a weekly feature in the Anderson Observer is now celebrating it's first month of pointing the way to the best spots to grab lunch in Anderson County. 

In the weeks ahead, I'll be visiting restuarants in all corners of the county, so stay tuned for a recommendation for a good plate of lunch near you.

In case you missed the first visits the list:

Week 1: Brisket Burger at Pompous Pig

Week 2: Sullivan's Pot Roast Sandwich

Week 3: Groucho's Deli Reubun

Week 4: Turkey & Dressing at Steakhouse 41 (aka Carlee's)

Monday
Apr222019

S.C. Gets $79 Million for Medicaid from Tobacco Settlement

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina has been paid another installment from the settlement nearly all U.S. states signed with the major tobacco companies in 1998.

State Attorney General Alan Wilson said Monday most of the nearly $79 million in the 2019 payment will go to help pay for Medicaid.

Wilson said in a statement that South Carolina has received nearly $1.6 billion over more than two decades from the settlement.

The settlement was made with what were the four major tobacco companies in 1998. It restricted the advertising and marketing of cigarettes and made arrangements for yearly payments to cover health care costs from tobacco use.

Monday
Apr222019

Teachers Group Plans May 1 Walk Out Rally in S.C.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A group of South Carolina teachers organized on social media is asking all teachers to take a day off during the middle of next week and march on the Statehouse.

SC for Ed is organizing the All Out On May 1 rally, saying lawmakers have not done enough this year to help teachers after promising education reform.

In a statement, the group says a 4 percent raise for teachers in this year's proposed budget is not enough. They also are upset the General Assembly has not passed proposals to reduce class sizes, guarantee teachers at least a short break without students and add social workers and counselors.

A similar rally is planned for North Carolina on May 1, where a number of the state's larger school districts have canceled classes.

Monday
Apr222019

U.S. Measles Cases Approaches Levels Not Seen in 25 Years

NEW YORK (AP) — Outbreaks in New York state continue to drive up the number of U.S. measles cases, which are approaching levels not seen in 25 years.

Health officials say 71 more cases were reported last week, with 68 of them from New York. That brings this year's total to 626.

That is already the most since 2014, when 667 were reported for the whole year. The most before that was 963 cases in 1994.

Twenty-two states have reported cases, but the vast majority have been in New York — mainly in New York City and in nearby Rockland County. Most of the New York cases have been unvaccinated people in Orthodox Jewish communities.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the latest numbers Monday.

Monday
Apr222019

Nobel Prize-Winning Chemist to Speak at Clemson

CLEMSON, South Carolina — Nobel laureate Sir Fraser Stoddart will talk about the work that led to his Nobel Prize in chemistry in a lecture open to students, faculty and staff at Clemson April 29, from 3-4 p.m. in the Watt Center auditorium.

Stoddart was a co-recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in Chemistry in 2016 “for the design and synthesis of molecular machines.” He was invited to Clemson on behalf of graduate students in the Department of Chemistry by associate professor Sourav Saha, who received his doctoral degree under Stoddart’s supervision at UCLA. Since 2008, Stoddart has been a Board of Trustees Professor of chemistry at Northwestern University.

Stoddart is also an avid science communicator; he tweets from @sirfrasersays, with 11,500 followers. His Twitter profile says he “mingles art with science” and “wears chemistry proudly on his sleeve”. In an interview for the Nobel website, Stoddart said, “I feel that I must reach out to the young people who are coming into science at the moment. Twitter breaks down a lot of barriers and I become one of them. I was persuaded by my ex-graduate student Stuart Cantrill to start tweeting when I went to Stockholm. I took his advice and I am now labelled as a twitter monster!”