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Unemployment Rate Down Slightly

South Carolina's unemployment rate was down for the fourth straight month to 11 percent in May, but at least one expert said Friday the state continues to see a troubling decline in its labor force.

Last month's jobless rate was a half percentage point lower than a revised 11.5 percent reported for April and down from 11.7 percent in May 2009. The unemployment rate peaked at 12.5 percent in January.

The national jobless rate for May was 9.7 percent. South Carolina had the nation's seventh-highest unemployment rate behind Nevada (14 percent), Michigan (13.6 percent), California (12.4 percent), Rhode Island (12.3 percent), Florida (11.7 percent) and Mississippi (11.4 percent), according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Part of the improvement in the unemployment rate came from a decrease of almost 7,700 people in the state's total labor force, Coastal Carolina University research economist Donald Schunk said in a report Friday. It was the third straight month of declines in the labor force, adding up to about 27,000 fewer workers than in May 2009.


Dr. Haddock Dies at 80

ANDERSON, SC – Dr. Samuel Thompson Haddock, age 80, husband of Doris H. Haddock, passed away on Saturday, June 19, 2010.

The funeral arrangements will be announced by The McDougald Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, it is suggested that memorials be made to G.A.M.A.C., P.O. Box 2365, Anderson, SC 29622; the Building Fund of St. John’s United Methodist Church, 515 South McDuffie Street, Anderson, SC 29624, or to Hospice of The Upstate, 1835 Rogers Road, Anderson, SC 29621.


Children Can Make Family Trees at Museum Saturday

On Saturday, June 19 at 11 a.m. children are invited to come to the Anderson County Museum (ACM) to participate in a family tree craft. Children will use their hand prints and green paint to make the leaves and branches of the tree. Foam apples will be provided for children to write the names of their relatives. This program will introduce the children to the concept of genealogy. All art supplies will be provided by the ACM. Children can also bring small pictures of relatives if they choose to use on their trees. Parents are strongly encouraged to call ahead and reserve a spot for their children.

The ACM staff will also present a fun artifact from its collection in a “show and tell” fashion. This will teach children the definition of an artifact and intrigue them to further investigate the ACM’s gallery 

The Anderson County Museum is at 202 East Greenville Street, in downtown Anderson. The Fred Whitten Gallery and Museum Store hours are Tuesday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Wednesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Reading and Research Room is open 1 to 4 p.m. on Thursdays and by appointment. ACM is handicap accessible and admission is free. Donations are always welcome. For more information, contact the Anderson County Museum at (864) 260-4737.  


AIM Needs Children's Furniture for Benefit

In preparation for the Women AIM High Benefit luncheon in September, we are seeking donations of children’s chairs, tables, stools, rockers, etc.!  They don’t have to be in perfect shape.  AIM has several creative souls that would like to redo & decorate them for our children’s chair auction at the luncheon.

If you are interested in decorating a chair or providing a chair for the event contact AIM to add the item to our list.  This is a great project for a mother & daughter to do together, a class or a service project for youth groups! 

Call 226-2273 x101 for more information or to donate.


Anderson to Participate in Statewide Civil Defense Drill

County Council to Hold Meeting for Declaration

Anderson County Council will hold a special called meeting Thursday at 1:00 p.m. for the "ENACTMENT OF A LOCAL EMERGENCY DECLARATION BASED ON THE PALMETTO SHIELD RED DRAGON DISASTER EXERCISE"



A series of statewide full-scale emergency drills entitled Palmetto Eagle and Palmetto Shield will be held throughout South Carolina starting this week. The state-wide drills will include Palmetto Eagle for coastal counties and Palmetto Shield for the Upstate of South Carolina. 

A concurrent military exercise entitled Red Dragon will occur, which is designed to help improve U.S. Army Reserve defense support of civil authorities (DSCA) operations during an emergency response to a large-scale chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear (CBRN) disasters--encompasses the following diverse military skill sets: chemical, medical, signal, engineer (firefighting), quartermaster, transportation, mortuary affairs, chaplain, and public affairs. The U.S. Army Reserve Units, including the 415th Chemical Brigade and the 335th Signal Command (Theater) will be supporting civilian authorities involved in the Palmetto Shield Operations.  

Palmetto Shield, the upstate portion of the state-wide drill, will be conducted in Abbeville, Oconee, Pickens, Greenwood and Anderson counties June 16 – June 20, 2010 to test the operational and communications capability of the areas’ first responders in a real-time, stress environment, in which personnel, equipment and resources are mobilized and deployed. The exercise will begin June 8, with information delivered to law enforcement officials regarding potential terrorist activity throughout the upstate and along the I-85 corridor. 

Thousands of emergency response personnel from over 108 different agencies representing fire departments, law enforcement agencies, Emergency Medical Services, multiple hospitals, the Red Cross and other mutual aid organizations will take part in the exercise and test their procedures at the same time. Emergency personnel from the SC State Law Enforcement Division, the South Carolina Emergency Management Division, the US Army Reserve 415th Chemical Brigade, the Department of Health and Environmental Control, FEMA Region IV and the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms Bureau will be on hand to participate in the exercise. In addition to the emergency response agencies, local corporations and businesses will also have active roles in the exercise. 

The exercise will involve multiple incidents from multiple counties in the Upstate with scenarios ranging from domestic disturbances, hostage situations, findings of bomb-making materials and information gathering regarding additional plans for terrorist activity throughout the upstate. The exercise comes to a paramount peak on June 19 when improvised explosive devices are detonated throughout Anderson City and Anderson County.  


Clemson to Face ASU in World Series

Arizona State won the College World Series when it last played Clemson in its first game.

For that historical precedent alone, No. 1-ranked ASU welcomes the Tigers as its opening opponent at 4 p.m. Sunday at Rosenblatt Stadium, in its final year as home to the CWS that will remain in Omaha, Neb., in new stadium near downtown starting in 2011.

No. 20 Clemson (43-23) held off Alabama 8-6 in its super regional finale Monday to earn a rematch against ASU (52-8), who swept the Tigers, 7-4 and 8-2, in a 2009 super regional.

Clemson is making its 12th CWS appearance and first since 2006. ASU is playing in its 22nd CWS, second straight and fourth since 2005. The Sun Devils were third in 2005 and '09.

At the 1977 College World Series, the Sun Devils beat Clemson 10-7 on their path to the fourth of their five national titles, the most recent in 1981.

ASU returns to Omaha with 11 contributors from a 2009 team that went 51-14. First-year coach Tim Esmay was an assistant on five ASU teams that reached the CWS and played second base for the Sun Devils in the 1987 CWS.

Read more:


Detention Center to Get Local Produce

On Monday, June 14th, the Anderson County Detention Center received its first shipment of fresh local produce. Long-time Anderson farmer Louis Keasler arrived at the Detention Center with a truckload of cabbage and tomatoes. Future deliveries will take place on a weekly basis. The Farmers Market will work with Detention Center staff to provide produce that is in season throughout the year.

“We are thrilled to work with the County to provide our fresh produce for the Detention Center,” said Keasler, who is also a Farmer’s Market board member. “This is a great and very beneficial relationship for both Anderson County and our local farmers.  The Farmer’s Market Board wants to encourage more partnerships with government and community organizations that desire to provide their clients with a healthy diet of local, fresh produce. We are available to talk to you about these local options and encourage the community to help us spread the word.”


Cleveland Road to Close for Two Weeks

Cleveland Road will be closed for two weeks beginning on June 28th. Anderson County’s Roads and Bridges Department has scheduled pile foundation repairs to Cleveland Road Bridge near Richland Drive. Traffic will be detoured onto US 29 and Richland Drive during the interim.

SCDOT notified the county that some of the timber piles supporting the bridge were deteriorated and repair or replacement work was needed. The County had the piling evaluated to determine the extent of repairs needed and it was determined that the County’s bridge crew could accomplish the repairs in-house.

Since the completion of the Old Mill Road bridge rehabilitation in May, the bridge crew has been preparing for this pile repair project, while also working on other bridge maintenance repairs and guardrail installations throughout the County.

For more information, contact Judy Shelato, Principal Engineer at 864.260.4190 or        


SC Health Cooperative Offers New Approach for Small Businesses

The South Carolina Health Cooperative (SCHC), announced today, is a new nonprofit, nonpartisan organization whose mission is to serve small businesses across South Carolina as they begin to deal with the new federal healthcare insurance legislation and its impact on their ability to offer healthcare insurance to their employees. Its primary goal is to serve as an advocate for small businesses in the complex healthcare insurance environment, according to the company's president and CEO, Cooper Littlejohn.

“The South Carolina Health Cooperative is committed to helping small businesses in the state find and implement solutions to providing their employees quality healthcare insurance at affordable prices,” Littlejohn said. ”Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy. In South Carolina alone we have more than 80,000 small-business employers. There is no reason they should be penalized for wanting to provide the same benefits to their employees that their larger counterparts are able to provide.”

The cooperative will serve as a clearinghouse for information on health and wellness issues as well as healthcare insurance issues. Littlejohn said the company will help formulate new ideas for legislation to help small businesses provide healthcare insurance to their employees and work with small businesses to help them understand what they can do to negotiate better prices with insurance companies.

The South Carolina Health Cooperative has applied to the South Carolina Department of Insurance (DOI) to become the first healthcare insurance cooperative in the state since the South Carolina General Assembly passed the enabling legislation in 2008. Littlejohn said SCHC is working hard to fully comply with the law and the Department's mission to provide safe insurance products for the citizens of South Carolina. The company began the application process last fall, and Littlejohn said DOI has requested some revisions and additional information before completing the license.

Once approved, the Cooperative would offer small businesses the opportunity to join together to form one large group for the purposes of obtaining healthcare insurance. The Cooperative proposes to offer 5-year memberships to qualifying small businesses and to guarantee maximum yearly rate increases for each year. Small businesses could join the insurance program knowing what their rates would be in five years. Membership in the co-op would be available to businesses ranging in size from two to 50 employees, based on current state law.


Anderson County Council May Ask for Immigration Laws

Anderson County Council may ask the South Carolina Legislative delegation for stricter immigration legislation as part of Tuesday's meeting.

Complete agenda here.


County Mourns Loss of Ike Brissey

Anderson County bids a sorrowful farewell to county employee and long-time community servant, Ike Brissey, who passed on Wednesday, June 9, 2010. Captain Ike Brissey was assistant coordinator of emergency services for the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department. Obituary here.

Ike was known and loved throughout the Anderson Community and the State. He joined the Hopewell Fire Department as a volunteer fireman in 1982 and dedicated an enormous amount of time and effort in protecting the lives and property of Anderson County residents. He served as Hopewell’s Fire Chief for six years. His selfless dedication and service earned Ike the distinction of being chosen Anderson County Fireman of the Year in 1989.

He served as president of the Anderson Area Chamber of Commerce from 1980 to 1986 and has actively represented Anderson County throughout the State of SC in many capacities including emergency planning and communication roles.

“Ike was an adoring father, an adoring husband and one of the most dedicated individuals I have ever known,” said Anderson County Interim Administrator Rusty Burns. “Ike was a servant leader. He led by example and because of his kind, gentle spirit, many followed in his footsteps. He will be sorely missed. His position with the County will be filled, but make no mistake, Ike Brissey could never be replaced.” 

“My sympathies go out to the Brissey family and friends,” said County Council Chairman Tommy Dunn. “Ike was a good man. We shared a commitment to protecting our community from the hazards of fire and we had the opportunity to work together at the County. But most of all, I had the honor of calling him my friend. We will miss him, but his impact on this community will last forever.”

“Anderson County has lost a true public servant,” said Anderson County Sheriff John Skipper. “Ike Brissey has meant so much to so many. His life left a lasting imprint on the future of Anderson County.  My sincerest sympathies go out to his family and to all those who called him friend.”

Ike leaves behind his loving wife, Diane and two daughters and one son.

Ike also leaves a legacy of community service, which includes:

  • He was voted Anderson County Fireman of the Year in 1989
  • He was past Chief and Chairman of the Board of Hopewell Fire Department
  • He was included in the Top Ten Leaders of Anderson County in 1985, 1986 and 1987
  • He co-founded Anderson Area CrimeStoppers n 1985
  • He founded Leadership Anderson, a leadership development program of the Chamber of Commerce
  • He implemented the Anderson division of Positive Management Leadership, a program for top management to learn win/win type management skills
  • He was co-founder and a past chairman for the Anderson Summer Soiree
  • He was founder of the Golden Goose Society, a community pride organization
  • He was co-founder of the Anderson Area Touchdown Club
  • He was a past president of the Anderson City Rotary Club
  • He provided a lifetime of service to his church, serving in various capacities

Clemson Playwriting Workshop this Month

During Clemson University's annual playwriting workshop this month, Clemson
theater students will have the opportunity to help Russian playwright Maksym
Kurochkin adapt one of his plays for American audiences.

Read the entire news release at:


WYFF: Two County Council Seats in June 22 Runoff